Budapest is a unique blend of culinary tradition with German, Turkish, Balkan, and Hungarian influences. Restaurants, street food, snacks, fast food, soups, bars, cafes, take away, goulash, pizza, langos, hamburger, hot dog, and much more: this is the huge food offer available in Budapest.
That is why it is impossible to provide only one answer to the question where to eat in Budapest. The city is full of restaurants of all kids and price ranges. You will be spoilt of choice. These numerous options are the result of a mix of external influences and local traditions.
When it comes to eat in Budapest, you can choose from: Street food, Ruins pubs or Classical restaurants.
Let’s try to see which are the benefits of each option, in order to find your favorite way to discover Budapest through its culinary offer.
Street food is not limited only to kebab kiosks. The street food mecca is by far the Great Market Hall: here you can find any kind of typical dishes.
The Great Market Hall, which is open from 6am to 6pm, is the best place where to eat gulash, the national dish, or lagos, a deep fried flatbread covered with cheese and served warm. The food hall is located on the fist floor; bare in mind that during the peak hours it may be crowded and there are limited seats.
Around the streets of Budapest there are not too many kioks; however, besides the Central Market there are numerous take-away restaurants, offering fast food or healthy choices. The best thing about eating at these kiosk is the opportunity to taste some authentic Hungarian food at very affordable prices.
Another option when it comes to decide where to eat in Budapest is to try one of the famous ruin pubs. These pubs are specialized in “beer-based after dinners”, but some offer also delicious national and international dishes.
Some of these pubs have Spanish or Mexican influences, such as El Rapido, which is famous for its tortillas and echiladas, or the Kuplung, famous for its Mexican dishes.
Mazel Tov, on the other hand, has some lebanese, israeli, and middle eastern influences. It opened its doors in 2014 and it soon became one of the most popular places in Budapest thanks to its delicious food and its innovative ambient, which is halfway between an outdoor garden and a ruin pub.
These typical pubs offer affordable prices, representing a less touristic choice. Opening hours are very advantageous, as the kitchen is open from the afternoon until late night.
Budapest offers numerous great restaurants of all kinds and price ranges. You will notice a number of Turkish restaurants. About that: the Turkish cuisine has great flavors characterized by some complex and historical dishes.
For instance, the famous Etterem (which in Hungarian means “restaurant”), is a place where to enjoy some meat-based dishes. If you wish to try a Micheline-starred restaurant, you should try the Costes, the most exclusive restaurant of the capital city. Located in the picturesque Raday Utca, a street full of pubs, cafes, and restaurants, the Costes restaurant represents one of the best places in Budapest.
Of course the offer of restaurants in Budapest is way wider. This is one of the best things about the Hungarian capital city: an offer of high level and exclusive restaurants. Here is a list of restaurants you should not miss during your visit to Budapest:
What better way to discover local dishes than to take part in a food tour? We have selected a few, choose the one that suits you.
Hungarian cuisine is famous all over the world because of its spicy and sweet and sour flavors. Paprika, whether sweet (csemege) or spicy (csipos), and pepper are used not only in the traditional Hungarian cuisine, but also in all those dishes coming from a real Hungarian gastronomic revolution.
Among the most famous dishes there are Gulash (Gulyas), which is a tasty soup with beef stew and pasta, lard (or oil), onions, cumin, paprika, potatoes, carrots, parsley, peppers, and tomatoes – this recipe is very different from the Check one.
Soups in general are one of the main dishes in the Hungarian cuisine; delicious mushrooms and potatoes soups – in some restaurants they are served with toasted apple slices. You should definitely try the cabbage soup as well as the catfish soup. On summer time you should not miss the sour cherry soup. Experiment with all these flavors that will definitely surprise you.
Halaszl soups are made of meat, vegetables, or fish. These are the main Hungarian dishes and they can vary according to the geographical region.
The Porkolt stew is another traditional dish; it can be made with beef or mixed meats, cooked with sauteed onions and lard, seasoned with paprika, peppers, and tomatoes. It comes in a thick red sauce. Only in Hungary it is cooked with some tejfol, a thick sour cream available only in Hungary. In addition to the famous Hungarian salami, the country offers a variety of delicious cold cuts, like the teli szalami and the Pick szalami.
In Budapest restaurants dishes like duck or goose liver are very common. Among the typical sweets and cakes there are strudel, Gundel crepe, Somlo-style cake, chestnuts puree and ricotta parcels.
Hungary has some excellent vineyards. There are plenty of high quality wines that you will be able to enjoy during your stay in the country; very often they are available at very affordable prices.
Palinka is a fruit brandy made of apricot, peer, cherry, or plum. It is usually served with the following appetizers: libamaj, goose liver pate, korozott, liptauer cheese spread, spiced scallions, and a type of bun called pogacsa.
The most famous Hungarian liquor is the Unicum, which belongs to the magyar tradition.
City Card allow you to save on public transport and / or on the entrances to the main tourist attractions.