Nothing beats traveling the world. The excitement of experiencing new people, landscapes, sights and sounds—it’s what every jet setter lives for. And every well-versed traveler knows one of the best parts about traveling is getting to taste the best of the best every new place has to offer.
But epic food doesn’t always mean 5-star restaurants that break your bank. Most often than not, travelers simply have to roam cities on foot for mouth-watering STREET FOOD. That’s right. The delectable delights that define cultures and has world travelers scouting for more.
Street food is magic. There’s something enchanting about the on foot search, the smells and smokes breathing out onto crowded streets and the joy of tasting authentic cuisine. Top 5 is here to guide you to the magic, to the tastiest street food around the world. Follow along as we not only countdown the most popular street food but also give you locations for each dish.
Are you reading to plan out your next adventure around arancini, ramen and India’s best? You sure are.
6.) Arancini in Sicily
Where to find the best: Sicily
Specific food vendor: Panificio Ragona
Arancini, also referred to as arancina or arancine, are Italian breaded and deep fried rice balls filled with mozzarella or ragù—usually. Every region seems to have its own take on the “little oranges” (due to the circular shape and color). Other savory fillings include prosciutto, capers and eggplant, all of which are always paired with the best Italian cheese.
On Italy’s off shore land, arancini looks more like little cones than oranges. And Sicily is where it’s at for the fried rice balls. Sure, all Italy, like Milan and Naples, are popular destination spots for the cheesy delights but every 5 star foodie review points to the island below Italy’s “boot”. In Sicily foodies can get Arancino alla Norma (mushroom) or gorgonzola. Food vendors selling arancini are common in southern Italy and they sell special dessert rice balls for special holidays.
For the best reviewed vendor, visit Panificio Ragona in the coastal town Marsala in Sicily. Why? An ubiquitous this is the best arancini in Sicily can be heardon every travel site.
Location: Via Abele Damiani, 15, 91025 Marsala TP, Italy
5.) Belgian Waffles in Brussels
Where to find the best: Bussels, Belgium
Specific food vendor: Le Funambule
Ah, the waffle that says you deserve better because Belgian Waffles are no basic waffles. Belgium’s waffles, which locals refer to as simply waffles, are made with lighter batter than the ones in The States and are crispier with deeper nooks. But filling these nooks with assorted fruits and toppings is not the Belgium way.
There are two popular waffles in Belgian: the Brussels waffle and the Liège waffle. The first is a staple fair food in America, dusted with powdered sugar. The Liège differs with a layer of sugar on its surface while it cooks. The result is a sweet coat like candy apples.
Go to Brussels for the best damn waffles you have ever had. They are as street food-y as it comes so anywhere in the region is delicious. If you are a person on a mission to discover the local’s gem visit Le Funambule. It also has tourists daydreaming of their last visit when Le Funambule served them perfect Lièges.
Location: Rue de l’Etuve 42, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
4.) Pupusas in El Salvador
Where to find the best: Olocuilta, El Salvador
Specific food vendor: Pupuseria Abrego and Pupuseria El Tejano.
If you haven’t tried pupusas you haven’t lived. Sorry, but they are that good. They originate from El Salvador, a tiny country in Central America south of Mexico and Guatemala. A pupusa is made of masa flour, filled with cheese, meats like chicharróne, or vegetables and served with tomato sauce and curtido, a type of mild cabbage slaw.
Fans of cheese tamales need to visit the Salvadoran city, Olocuilta for fan favorite pupusas. Olocuilta is home to the tradtional dish and therefore knows what it takes to make it. The town is famous for having pupuserias (restaurants that specialize in the dish) on every corner—think Starbucks in any major city. Some of the most popular pupuserias are: Pupuseria Abrego and Pupuseria El Tejano.
3.) Churros in Madrid
Where to find the best: Madrid, Spain
Specific food vendor: Chocolatería San Ginés
Churros are another deep fried sugary delight. It’s not hard to see why so many tourists flock to vendors in Spain and Portugal for a bite. The traditional Spanish and Portuguese can vary in size and thickness but are always sprinkled in a heavy dose of sugar. This makes churros perfect for dipping in other sweet foodie lover things, like champurrado and café con leche.
Visit Chocolatería San Ginés in Madrid for churros con chocolate, a dish where sugary spendor gets dipped in a bowl of chocolate heaven. The chocolatier is so famous in Puerta del Sol frequently has lines wrapping around the shop. Worth it!
Location: Pasadizo San Ginés, 5, 28013 Madrid, Spain
2.) Poutine in Québec
Where to find the best: Québec, Canada
Specific food vendor: Au Pied de Cochon or Le Roy Jucep
Fries, cheese curds and a generous serving of piping hot gravy. Individually, what’s not to love about Canada’s national dish? But combined? Wah-la. Magnifique!
Canada’s national dish wasn’t always so well received. The ooey-gooey goodness emerged from Quebec in the ’50s but the rest of the nation did not approve and mocked it. Yeah, crazy right? Now the dish has evolved to multiple variants to keep mouths satisfied.
As for the best poutine, clearly go to the Montreal, Quebec for that. Favorite shops include Au Pied de Cochon for lavish gravy amplified with egg and heavy cream. Or, visit the OG “greasy spoon” diner that claims to have invented it, Le Roy Jucep.
1.) Masala Dosa in India
Where to find the best: Anywhere in India
Specific food vendor: Anand Stall in Mumbai
Of course India is our top choice for street food. The country is known for its vibrant, delicious food prepared on streets by vendors. It is foodie heaven and one sure way to getting a ticket in is Masala Dosa.
The dish is two-part. Dosa is a type of Indian pancake similar to crepes. It’s made of fermented batter, rice and black garam. The second part is the stuffing. Potato, coriandor and mustard seeds stuff the Masala Dosa served with red chutney.
Originally a southern food, Masala Dosa has sky-rocketed throughout India. You can find good dosa throughout the country but for a tried-and-true experience visit Anand Stall in Mumbai. Anand Stall even serves pizza and dessert dosa. *Drool*.
Location: Gulmohar Road No. 1, Opp. Mithibai College, Vile Parle West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400056, India
Which street food made your mouth water? Did we miss your favorite travel food? Let us know in the comments!