No matter how expert a foodie you are, chances are you know relatively little about Romanian cuisine.

This article is dedicated to the most delicious and representative dishes of typical Romanian food, a culinary art strongly influenced by the fascinating Turkish gastronomy.

1. Mujdei

Mujdei is a garlic-based sauce from Romanian cuisine, similar to aioli, although it does not necessarily have oil like this one.

The word “mujdei” derives from “must de ai”, which translates as “garlic must”. White in color, smooth in texture and with an intense garlic flavor and aroma, it is the Romanians’ favorite seasoning for grilled meats, roast chicken, fish and potatoes.

The simplest version of the sauce is made by mashing a good amount of peeled garlic cloves and coarse salt to taste in a wooden mortar. Romanians usually use a mortar just for this purpose.

A small amount of water is then added to the pasta, depending on how light or thick the sauce is desired. It is also usual to add a little chopped dill.

Germans living in Romania invented a sweet mujdei, in which they mix garlic, sour cream, honey, apple cider vinegar and tarragon. This sauce provides a completely different culinary experience than the classic mujdei.

On the Black Sea coast they prepare a recipe for mujdei with garlic, red hot pepper and tomato.

Watch the video of how to make the Mujdei dish (although the explanation is not in Spanish xD):

2. Mititei

It is said that this recipe was invented in Bucharest’s La Iordachi bar, a place known for its sausage and charcuterie snacks. It consists of a roll of minced meat that is grilled. The cuts usually used are veal, lamb and pork and the meat is seasoned with garlic, spices and aromatic herbs. Generally mititei or mici is served with mustard and a beer.


  • 400 grams of minced beef
  • 100 grams of minced lamb meat
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Thyme, pepper and salt to taste


  • Peel and finely chop the garlic cloves.
  • Mix the minced meat in a bowl and add thyme, pepper and salt to taste, also adding bicarbonate, which has the quality of making the meat more tender.
  • Mix the garlic with 2 tablespoons of water and add it to the meat paste, kneading manually.
  • Let it rest for a while in the refrigerator and prepare sausage-like meat rolls.
  • Grill or bake rolls.

3. Zacusca

It is a typical vegetable stew from Romania and the Balkan Peninsula. The main ingredients are roasted aubergines and peppers, onions and tomato. Some cooks substitute zucchini for aubergines and add mushrooms. It is a recipe that is prepared during the harvest season and vegetables and stored in sterilized jars to eat in winter.


  • 4 medium eggplants
  • 2 large onions
  • 1 large red bell pepper and 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 large grated carrot
  • 800 grams of chopped tomato
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 6 tablespoons of sunflower oil
  • Laurel, pepper and salt to taste


  • Grill the eggplants on all sides over high heat until the skin is charred (approximately 20 minutes).
  • Let the aubergines cool, remove the skin, let them drain a little so that the bitter liquid comes out, and chop them.
  • Sauté the onions in the sunflower oil, add the pepper, mix and add the carrot.
  • Add the tomato, finely chopped garlic, vinegar, sugar, and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Let cook covered for an hour over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  • After an hour of cooking, add the chopped eggplant pulp and bay leaves, cooking for another half hour and stirring frequently.
  • Serve on slices of bread.

4. Cozonac

Cozonac is a typical sweet from some Eastern European countries, especially Romania, Bulgaria, Albania and North Macedonia. It is traditional to eat it during the end of the year festivities.

The dough is usually knotted into a large braid for decorative effects, and some versions incorporate raisins and chopped walnuts. At Christmas it is traditional to accompany it with a hot chocolate. It is prepared in a homemade way and in bakeries and pastry shops for sale.


  • 1 kg of flour
  • 300 grams of sugar (250 + 50)
  • 30 grams of yeast (25 + 5)
  • 2 whole eggs and 2 yolks
  • 150 grams of margarine
  • ½ liter of milk
  • 100 grams of bitter cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar
  • 1 spoon of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of oil


  • Mix the flour with 250 grams of sugar, 25 grams of yeast, the eggs and the 2 yolks, the vanilla sugar, the margarine and the milk to form a moldable dough.
  • Separate a quarter of the dough, add the remaining sugar and yeast, cocoa and oil, adding a splash of water if necessary.
  • Roll out the white dough and then the cocoa dough. Put the cocoa mass on top of the white one and roll up.
  • Bake for 30 minutes in a preheated oven at 150 ° C.
  • Boil a tablespoon of sugar dissolved in a splash of water, removing from the heat when it is about to thicken.
  • Take the cozonac out of the oven and brush it with the sugar syrup.


Romania was several centuries under the rule of the Ottoman Empire and one of the legacies bequeathed by Turkish gastronomy is baklava, a pistachio and/or walnut cake bathed in syrup or honey.

Some versions incorporate almonds, hazelnuts, other nuts, and kaymak, which is a popular dairy product in Turkey, similar to whipped cream.

Although the Ottoman Turks perfected baklava when the kitchens of the imperial palace in Constantinople were the navel of the empire in terms of deliciousness, the history of the dessert dates back to Mesopotamia and Assyria.


  • 30 sheets of filo dough
  • 175 grams of clarified butter
  • 250 grams of finely chopped walnuts
  • 250 grams of sugar
  • 350 ml of water
  • 15ml lemon juice


  • Spread a square or rectangular baking pan with 2 tablespoons of clarified butter.
  • Place 15 sheets of phyllo dough in the mold, spreading its surface with clarified butter.
  • Spread the nuts on the phyllo dough and repeat the procedure with the remaining sheets.
  • Press the dough from the edges inward and cut the preparation into diamonds with a sharp knife, reaching the bottom, to facilitate the separation of the pieces.
  • Sprinkle the remaining clarified butter on top and bake for 30-40 minutes in a preheated oven at 180°C.
  • Mix the sugar, water and lemon juice in a saucepan and cook over low heat for about 20 minutes until you have a syrup.
  • Remove the cake from the oven, pour the syrup over it, let it rest for about 15 minutes and serve.

6. Salată de vinete

Salată de vinete or eggplant salad is one of the most popular dishes of typical Romanian food.

It is made from grilled or baked aubergines, similar to the baba ganush of Egyptian cuisine and the Indian baingan bharta, which are then peeled, mashed and mixed with other ingredients.

Salată de vinete is eaten hot or cold as an appetizer, spread on slices of bread, or as a side dish with meat dishes, especially lamb.


  • 4 eggplants
  • 2 spring onions
  • 2 tomatoes
  • Sunflower oil
  • Salt to taste


  • Wash the aubergines and roast them in the oven at 180-190°C for half an hour (you know they are ready when you touch them with a spoon and they feel hollow).
  • Take the aubergines out of the oven and let them cool slightly.
  • Peel the aubergines, let them drain a little and cut them into pieces.
  • Put the pieces of aubergine in a bowl and mix them with the finely chopped spring onions and tomatoes and sunflower oil and salt to taste, to form a kind of paste.

7. Gingerbread

Gingerbread or gingerbread is a cookie or biscuit known in several European countries since the 10th century. It is prepared with ginger and various spices and sweetened with honey or syrup.

It is usual to cut or prepare the cookies in molds such as hearts and human figures. The gingerbread recipe is believed to have been invented in the Greek city of Nicopolis in Epirus by the Armenian monk Gregory of Nicopolis.

The priest took the recipe to France in 992 and from there it became known in the rest of Europe.


  • 50 grams of butter
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 2 teaspoons of ginger powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spices (cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and others to taste)
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda


  • Melt the butter and honey over low heat in a small saucepan.
  • In a bowl, prepare a cream with the egg and brown sugar and add the melted butter and honey mixture.
  • Mix the flour with the previous preparation, plus the ginger powder, the baking powder and the mixed spices.
  • Prepare a mixture with the milk and baking soda and add it little by little to the previous preparation. This must be sufficiently liquid.
  • Line a loaf pan or English pudding pan with parchment paper.
  • Pour the preparation into the mold and bake for approximately 35 minutes in a preheated oven at 180 °C. Do the skewer test to see if it’s ready.

8. Gogosis (Romanian fritters)

Appetizing and fluffy, these types of Romanian fritters or donuts save breakfast or a snack with the accompaniment of a cup of hot chocolate, especially on harsh winter days.

The delicious smell that emanates from the kitchen is capable of waking up children and adults from the deepest sleep, who jump out of bed to eat them warm.


  • 400 grams of flour
  • 250 ml of milk
  • 1 egg
  • 100 grams of sugar
  • 50 grams of butter
  • 7 grams of dry yeast
  • A dash of vanilla essence
  • A little grated lemon or orange peel
  • Vegetable oil
  • A little sugar to sprinkle


  • Mix all the ingredients and knead until they are well integrated.
  • Let the dough rest for 2 hours.
  • Form the fritters or donuts and fry them in oil.
  • Remove them from the pan and sprinkle them with sugar.

9. Halva

Halva is a semolina pastry confection that was very popular in the Middle East, Iran, India, and Pakistan, from where it found its way to the Eastern Mediterranean, the Balkans, and Eastern Europe.

In the Eastern Mediterranean, halva prepared with tahini paste is common. This paste is basically made with ground sesame seeds and a liquid ingredient that can be oil or water.

Sunflower halva is more common in Eastern Europe, especially in Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, Russia and Belarus.


  • 550 grams of sunflower seeds
  • 140 grams of thick honey
  • 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 70 grams of raisins


  • Wash the raisins, let them soak in cold water for 10 minutes and drain.
  • Put a dry frying pan on the heat and toast the sunflower seeds, stirring constantly, until they are evenly browned.
  • Let the seeds cool and crush them in a mortar until they are finely ground like a flour.
  • Mix the ground seeds with honey and olive oil to form a uniform dough. Add the raisins and mix.
  • Cover a mold with plastic wrap and place the dough, pressing it well. Cover and refrigerate until hardened.

10. Rahat lokum (Turkish delight)

This soft gelatinous sweet similar to gummies or jellies is another contribution of Ottoman Turkish gastronomy to Romanian cuisine.

The base of the sweet is a syrup and a thickener, typically gelatin, and in Romania and other countries in Eastern Europe and the Balkan Peninsula it is customary to flavor it with fruit juices.

Commercial versions are available all over the world in countless colors and flavors and there are basic ones and ones filled with pieces of walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios and other dried fruits.

In the 18th century it was the custom in Istanbul for gentlemen to present ladies with Turkish delight wrapped in lace scarves during courtship. Picasso ate them galore for inspiration, and they were also a favorite sweet of Napoleon and Sir Winston Churchill. In Turkey it is customary to put one next to Turkish coffee.


  • 400 grams of sugar
  • 300 ml of water
  • Zest and juice of one lemon (separated)
  • The rind and juice of one orange (separated)
  • 4 dessert spoons of unflavored gelatin powder
  • 1 dessert spoon of cornstarch
  • 2 dessert spoons of icing sugar


  • In a saucepan, dissolve the sugar in 150 ml of water and cook over medium heat.
  • Add the lemon and orange zests and juices.
  • Let it boil gently and at the same time soften the gelatin in 150 ml of water for 10 minutes.
  • Add the gelatin mixture to the sugar and zest mixture and boil for 10 minutes.
  • As soon as the syrup reaches the thread point, strain it with a metal strainer, arranging it in such a way that the strain falls directly into the mold to be used.
  • Let cool at room temperature for 2 hours, then refrigerate overnight.
  • Cut into cubes about 2.5 cm on a side.
  • Serve the cornstarch and icing sugar to roll over the cubes before eating.

11. Frigarui

The frigarui is a meat dish of the typical food of Romania, similar to the brochette, the pincho or the kebab. The meats used are beef, pork, chicken and lamb, as a single ingredient or combining several, which can be interspersed with pieces of sausage or vegetables.

Main ingredients

  • ½ kilo boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into cubes.

Ingredients for the marinade

  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • The juice of half a lemon
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 3 ounces plain yogurt

Ingredients for the sauce

  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil or sunflower oil
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste

chicken preparation

  • Prepare a marinade by mixing the indicated ingredients.
  • Coat and coat the chicken cubes with the marinade.
  • Cover the container with a plastic cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 3 hours.
  • Prepare the grill or heat the oven, assemble the chicken skewers and grill them on both sides.

Preparation of the sauce

  • Peel the cloves from the head of garlic and crush them.
  • Add the rest of the sauce ingredients and mix.
  • Sauce the chicken with this preparation.

12. Ciorba de burta

Ciorba de burta is a typical dish of Romanian cuisine equivalent to beef tripe soup. It is customary to accompany it with sour cream and mujdei, the garlic paste (which is the national seasoning).

Romania is second in the podium of the countries that consume the most alcohol in the European Union, only surpassed by Ireland, and Romanians usually recover from a hangover with a generous plate of ciorba de burta.


  • 800 grams of beef tripe, cooked and cut into strips
  • 1 Italian pepper
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 liter of liquid cream
  • 6 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • coarse salt to taste


  • Prepare approximately 2 liters of broth with water, a chopped carrot, onion and Italian pepper; add salt to taste.
  • Strain the broth and bring to a boil along with the stripped tripe and chopped red pepper. Let cook for 15 minutes.
  • Grate the other carrot and fry it in the olive oil.
  • Add the fried carrot and the garlic cloves, peeled and crushed, to the tripe, letting it cook for another 15 minutes.
  • Rectify the salt, remove the tripe from the heat and let them cool.
  • Put the liquid cream in a large bowl and add a ladle of tripe broth and then another, mixing constantly. Add this cream mixture to the tripe.
  • Heat the pot with the tripe over low heat and add the vinegar.

13. Mamaliga

Mamaliga or Romanian polenta forms, together with sarmale and mici, what is probably the most popular trilogy of dishes in Romania. It is very similar to Italian polenta, although it is thicker and is usually sliced ​​and eaten with cheese, sour cream, and as a garnish for sarmale and other more elaborate dishes.

Before the conquerors brought corn to Europe in the 16th century, mamaliga was prepared with millet flour. Maize adapted very well to the Romanian region of the Danube delta and polenta from the cereal became an alternative food to wheat bread among peasants.


  • 220 grams of coarse yellow corn flour
  • 40 grams of butter
  • 1 liter of water
  • Salt to taste


  • Put the water and salt in a pot and add the flour in the form of rain, stirring constantly.
  • When a thick dough forms, add the butter and mix until it is well integrated into the flour.
  • Lower the heat and cook for half an hour, stirring vigorously from time to time.
  • Put the dough in a container that gives it the desired shape and let cool.

14. Pomana porcului

December 20 is Ignat’s day in Romania, traditionally reserved for the slaughter of the pig that will be eaten at Christmas and other winter celebrations. It is a typical ritual of ancient peoples in which the slaughter symbolizes the end and restart of life.

The occasion brings together families and friends to eat, drink and share and one of the dishes prepared is the pomana porcului or pork fried in fat from the same animal. The accompanying drink is usually tuica, a warm and potent brandy distilled from plums, the most popular Romanian fruit.

The following recipe is a variant of pomana porcului in which the pork is seasoned with garlic and fried in oil.


  • 300 grams of pork cut into small pieces
  • 10 cloves of garlic
  • Vegetable oil


  • Peel the garlic cloves and finely chop them.
  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the pork pieces.
  • When the pork is practically ready, add the garlic and let it brown.
  • Remove from heat and serve with mamaliga.

15. Tochitura

Transylvania is a historical Romanian region located in the center of the country, well known for being home to Bran Castle, where the Wallachian Count Vlad Dracula is supposed to have lived in the 15th century.

The thousands of fans of horror tourism, who follow in the footsteps of the historical figure made famous by the novelist Bran Stoker, have the opportunity to try tachitura in Transylvania. It is a typical dish based on beef and pork cuts, viscera and sausages stewed in a tomato sauce and other vegetables.

The following recipe is a somewhat light version of “tochitura a la Dracula”, a dish with which you will inevitably remember the famous vampire, hoping that this does not take away your appetite.


  • 900 grams of boneless pork loin
  • 450 grams of smoked sausages
  • 2 finely chopped tomatoes
  • 1 red and 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 yellow onion finely chopped
  • 6 minced garlic cloves
  • 5 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ cup of water
  • Salt and black pepper to taste


  • Cut the pork loin into cubes and the sausages into 2.5 cm pieces.
  • Heat the oil and water in a large skillet over medium heat until heated through.
  • Add the pork and cook for about an hour.
  • Add all the vegetables and sausage and continue cooking, stirring occasionally.
  • Season with salt and black pepper.
  • Serve accompanying with mamaliga.

16. Romanian salad

This salad is similar to the Russian one and the Romanians prepare it with chicken, beef, turkey and pork as a meat component. It is consumed at parties such as Christmas and on special occasions such as weddings and anniversaries.


  • 1 boneless chicken breast
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 2 carrots
  • 3 pickled cucumbers
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 handful of peas
  • 12 olives
  • Oil
  • Vinegar
  • mayonnaise and salt to taste


  • Cook the potatoes and carrots in their skins in plenty of salted water. Let cool and reserve.
  • In another saucepan, cook the breast and eggs and let cool.
  • Chop the pickles and olives into small pieces.
  • Peel the potatoes, carrots and eggs and cut them into cubes.
  • Cut the chicken into squares.
  • Place the chicken, potato, carrot and egg in a large bowl and mix carefully.
  • Stir in pickles, olives, and peas.
  • Add a splash of oil and another of vinegar and mayonnaise and salt to taste. Mix with encircling movements.
  • Refrigerate and serve.


It is a dish that Romanians prepare with lamb entrails or chicken livers, especially to eat during Easter.


  • 800 grams of chicken livers
  • 4 fresh eggs and 2 hard-boiled eggs
  • 6 stalks of green onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 handful of parsley and another of dill, fresh and chopped
  • oil or butter
  • Bread crumbs
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Boil the livers in salted water for 15 minutes, drain and let cool.
  • Chop the green onion, including the green part, and crush the garlic cloves.
  • Cut the livers into very small cubes or grate them on the coarse side of the grater.
  • Mix the liver with the green onion and garlic.
  • Lightly beat the fresh eggs and add them to the liver preparation, adding the parsley, dill and salt and pepper to taste. Mix manually.
  • Grease a mold with oil or butter and cover the surface with breadcrumbs.
  • Put half of the mixture in the mold. Peel the hard-boiled eggs and place them over the mixture the length of the pan.
  • Cover with the other half of the mixture and bake in a preheated oven at 190 ° C for 30 minutes or until ready, avoiding it drying out too much.
  • Rest, cut into portions and serve cold.

18. Sarmale

It is a popular typical Romanian food consisting of meat rolls made with cabbage leaves.


  • 1 kg of finely chopped meat (half beef and half pork)
  • 1.5 kg of cabbage
  • 2 large onions
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 300 grams of smoked bacon
  • 5 tablespoons of tomato sauce
  • 100 grams of rice
  • 150ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dill
  • 1 teaspoon cimbru (Romanian spice; thyme can be substituted)
  • 1 slice of bread
  • 1 lemon
  • Water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation of the filling dough

  • Saute the finely chopped onions and peppers in a little olive oil.
  • Add the previously washed rice and lightly toast it; stir to prevent sticking.
  • Remove the rice from the heat and add 100 ml of water and stir for a few minutes until cool.
  • Chop the bacon and mix it with the minced meat and with the previously soaked bread.
  • Add the remaining ingredients, except the cabbage leaves and lemon, and knead by hand until smooth.

Preparation of the rolls

  • Carefully strip the cabbage so that the leaves do not break, discarding the damaged ones.
  • Boil the leaves in a large saucepan with enough water and lemon juice, until tender.
  • Drain the leaves and cut them into rectangular pieces of equal size.
  • Spread a sheet out on a kitchen board and put the filling in a tablespoon in the middle.
  • Roll up, folding inwards at the ends, taking care not to squeeze too much so that the rice does not burst the rolls when it swells during cooking.
  • Cut the leftover cabbage into julienne strips.
  • Put the remaining olive oil (about 6 tablespoons) in a large, deep saucepan.
  • Put a bed of julienned cabbage in the bottom of the pan and then a bed of spring rolls, without sticking together.
  • Repeat this operation until you finish with the rolls, finally covering with a layer of cabbage.
  • Add water without covering the preparation and boil over low heat for 2 hours.
  • Serve the rolls on their own or accompany them with Romanian polenta (mamaliga).

19. Coliva

Coliva is a sweet cake made from grains of wheat, walnuts and other dried fruits, which Romanians prepare to eat after funerals and to honor the deceased. Many families make it for the holidays as well and it is absolutely delicious and easy to make.


  • 500 grams of wheat grains
  • 300 grams of chopped walnuts
  • 300 grams of biscuits powder
  • 250 grams of sugar
  • 3 small packets of vanilla sugar
  • 5 ml of rum essence
  • 2 liters of water


  • Wash the grains of wheat several times (Christian Romanians do 9 washes and pray an Our Father on each occasion for the deceased who is honored with the cake).
  • Put the water to boil and add the wheat when it breaks the boil. Cook over low heat until the water almost completely evaporates.
  • Add the sugar and continue cooking until it and the wheat grains form a thick paste. Let it cool.
  • Add the vanilla sugar, rum essence and chopped walnuts to the paste, mixing with a wooden spoon.
  • On a tray, put a layer with most of the biscuit powder and place the paste on top, flattening with a spatula.
  • Sprinkle the rest of the biscuit powder on top and flatten.
  • Refrigerate for one day.

20. Varza to Cluj

It is a typical Romanian dish similar to lasagna, but prepared with chopped cabbage instead of pasta sheets. It is characteristic of Cluj-Napoca, Romania’s second city and the historical capital of the Transylvania region.

This city has two large communities, one Romanian and one of Hungarian origin, and its gastronomy is marked by both cultures. The ingredients for Cluj cabbage are cheap, which is why this tasty dish is part of the popular regional and Romanian diet.


  • 1 medium cabbage
  • 500 grams of minced beef
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper cut into thin strips
  • 4 tablespoons of rice
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 3 tablespoons of fried tomato
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • white pepper and salt to taste


  • Wash, remove the stem and chop the cabbage.
  • Cook the chopped cabbage over low heat in a glass of water with salt and a touch of oil.
  • When the cabbage softens, add the fried tomato and cumin, mix well and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and reserve.
  • Put a little olive oil in a frying pan and fry the chopped onion and the pepper in strips.
  • Add the minced meat and mix.
  • When the meat is advanced in its cooking, add the sweet paprika, the rice and salt and white pepper to taste.
  • Continue cooking over medium heat until the rice is cooked. Remove from heat and reserve.
  • Grease a baking dish with a little oil, put a layer of cabbage and a layer of meat with rice on top.
  • Repeat the operation alternating layers of cabbage and meat with rice, ending with a layer of cabbage.
  • Heat the oven to medium heat and bake until the top layer of cabbage is golden brown.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and let cool slightly before cutting into portions.

What do you eat in Romania?

Romanians have a very broad diet and are good meat eaters, especially pork (fresh, smoked, sausage). They are so fond of pork that a saying in the country says “the best fish is always pork”. The long period that the country was under the rule of the Ottoman Empire left a high influence on gastronomy, especially in the national confectionery, with sweets such as baklava. Two essential components on the Romanian table are mamaliga (a corn polenta) and mujdei (a garlic dressing that they put on almost everything).

How do you eat in Bucharest?

In the Romanian capital, all the dishes of the country’s regional cuisines are eaten. The mici or mititei (highly seasoned minced meat roll) is one of the most popular snacks in the bars of the so-called Paris of the East, while the sarmale (meat and rice rolls wrapped in cabbage leaves) is one of the most common national dishes in Bucharest restaurants. In the city’s markets, shops, cafes and restaurants there is never a shortage of the emblematic sweets of Romanian gastronomy, such as Turkish delight, cozonac and baklava.

Romanian typical breakfast

Romanians have a strong breakfast and breakfast is the only meal where they drink milk. They can have breakfast from fried eggs with spinach puree, with pieces of cheese, to a smoked sausage soup, bacon, eggs and vegetables. Nettle soup with eggs, rice and vegetables is also a breakfast dish. A simpler meal to start the day is a few servings of mamaliga with hot chocolate.

Typical Romanian desserts

The cozonac, a sweet bread that is inevitable at the end of the year festivities and during Holy Week, is one of the most representative desserts in the country. Baklava, a pistachio or walnut cake, is another popular sweet. Papanasi is a sponge cake widely consumed as a snack and to accompany coffee or tea. Turkish delight are sugar-coated jelly beans that are ubiquitous and eaten in large quantities. Sunflower halva and boema prajitura are among the most appreciated Romanian desserts.

Typical things from Romania

Apart from its gastronomy, Romanian popular culture includes folk dances, such as the calus, a ritual declared Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2005. Dragobete is an entity in Romanian mythology equivalent to Cupid and its festival is similar to that of Saint Valentine, although it is celebrated on the 24th and not on the 14th of February. Martisor is a festival to celebrate the arrival of spring. People wear red garments (a color associated with the season) and women receive small gifts.

Transylvanian typical food

Tachitura is a traditional dish from the Romanian region of Transylvania, consisting of pork and beef parts and sausages stewed with tomato and other vegetables. Varza a la Cluj is the typical dish of Cluj-Napoca, head of the Northwest Economic Region and historical capital of Transylvania. Other common dishes in this region are cabbage salad, sarmale, mici with mustard and hot papanacis.

coffee romania

During the communist era (1947 – 1989), coffee became so rare in Romania that Romanians learned to appreciate it like gold dust. Brands such as Nescafé and Jacobs Krönung can now be found in Romanian stores. However, many Romanians order coffee from family and friends living in Germany, Austria and other Western European countries, believing that the products sold in the country are of inferior quality.

Typical Romanian food : Tuica to accompany

The plum is the national fruit of Romania and this republic is the main European producer of the stone fruit and one of the most important in the world. Romanians use the plum to make tuica, their national drink. It is a light-colored drink with an intense flavor, distilled from plums, yeast and sugar, with an alcohol content of 60 degrees.

When the tuica receives a second or third distillation, the palinca, an even stronger drink, is obtained. Other names used to designate the tuica are jinars, horinca and fatata. Tuica is typically drunk in a small shot or shot, one or two shots. It is consumed as an aperitif drink before meals because Romanians claim that it whets the appetite and improves the mood to enter the dishes with resolution.

Most of the tuica consumed in the country is manufactured industrially, although many Romanians make it by hand, especially between October and December, to have a good supply for the Christmas holidays. In rural areas of Romania, tuica is consumed as a substitute for wine.


If you have found this article about the typical food of Romania interesting, share it with your friends on social networks and invite them to a pleasure trip through this wonderful and enigmatic European nation.


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