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Top Dutch Recipes You Should Try

It’s funny how we’re so focused on travelling and blogging about all of our destinations, we forget our own country is a great place for travelling too! To us, food is one of the important factors: it can really make or break your experience. So if you visit the Netherlands, we want to be sure you have the best food experience. Here’s our very elaborate list of traditional Dutch food and recipes!


Dutch Homemade Meals
Dutch Snacks
Sweet Breakfast
Coffee Time (a.k.a. Cookie-time)
Special Occasions

Dutch Homemade Meals

This is food you can’t find in any restaurant. Traditional Dutch food is made at home, and let’s be honest: it doesn’t look very serveable for a restaurant! We actually love to cook these meals when we’re abroad when we’re Couchsurfing! Note: these are petty much winter dishes. Dutch cuisine doesn’t have particular summer-dishes, but that’s maybe because there barely is summer in the Netherlands.


While kale is often seen as ‘superfood’, in the Netherlands it’s the base of the most traditional dish in the country: boerenkool. The name of the dish is simply ‘kale’ in Dutch. It’s best eaten with a smoked sausage from the Dutch shop HEMA.

Boerenkool, Dutch mashed potato with kale, Dutch food, mash pot
Make this traditional dish!


If you’re short on kale, do not worry. The Dutch actually have a great variety of ‘stamppots‘ (mashed potato dishes). This one is called hutspot and is made with onion, potato, and carrot and is officially served with klapstuk!

Hutspot met klapstuk, hochepot, or hotchpotch
Make this dish


Erwtensoep (pea soup), or also ‘snert‘, is a kind of soup. It’s really thick though, so it definitely looks more like a puree of some sort. This dish is perfect after an afternoon of ice skating on the frozen canals!

Hollandse erwtensoep
Make this Dutch soup


You know it’s a Dutch dish when it has potatos, meat, and vegetable (we call it AVG: aardappel, vlees, groente). Here’s another example: hachee. A beef stew traditionally served with potato and red cabbage.

Hachee, Dutch beef stew recipe
Cook this meal!

Dutch Snacks

Surprisingly, we have much more ‘signature’ snacks than meals. There’s also a very funny concept you can find only in the Netherlands: eating out of the wall. Try it out in any FEBO fast food shop in the Netherlands!


We actually never tried making these, but this snack is probably the most famous Dutch snack. It’s a deep-fried, breaded snack with a soft meat filling. Best eaten with mustard!

Kroketten (Dutch Croquettes), Dutch snack
Find the best Dutch recipe


Basically the Kroket, but ball-sized!

Bitterballen Dutch snack
Make this recipe

Patatje Oorlog

Translated to Engish this is called ‘War Fries’. It’s a combination of French fries, mayo (Dutchies eat more mayo than ketchup), raw onions and Indonesian saté sauce (we have an extensive history with Indonesia). Let us assure you: you want to try this!

Amsterdam, Dutch food, patatje oorlog, war fries
Make this Dutch recipe

Frikandel (Dutch sausage)

Do not try to look up what’s in a frikandel. There are many horror stories about the leftovers of animals that go in here. So no recipe for this one, but you should totally try it!


Deep-fried fish: yummy! Since the Netherlands is so close to the sea, you can find many fish shops (Maartje used to work in one of them!). Kibbeling is definitely our favorite fish snack.

Kibbeling, Dutch fried fish
Deep-fry that fish (recipe)

Haring (Dutch herring)

A must eat in the Netherlands: herring with onions and pickles. Either on a sandwich or just like this (eat it like a roman eating grape!). We think it’s gross by the way haha.

Herring served the Dutch way, Haring


Everyone knows Gouda cheese, right?! Make sure to visit one of the Dutch cheese cities and experience a traditional cheese market. Maartje is actually from a town near Alkmaar, and they have a great cheese market every Friday morning! The typical Dutch way to eat cheese: on a sandwich (Dutch people eat bread for breakfast and lunch!).

Dutch Gouda cheese
Cheese is the best spread!

Sweet Breakfast

Okay, you can also eat these things for lunch or even dinner. It’s simply delicious.


This is the best EVER. It’s like pancakes, but small and fluffy – like a pillow. With lots of butter and powdered sugar definitely not the most healthy, but it’s heaven so who cares? Wanna try the best ones in the Netherlands? Go to Poffertjeskraam de Haan in Laren.

Poffertjes, Mini Dutch Pancakes Dutch food recipe
Find the best recipe

Pannenkoeken (Dutch pancakes)

Okay, while creating this article we found out Norway also has these, but these pancakes are pretty Dutch. Not as thin as French crêpe, not as thick as American pancakes: right in the middle & so perfect. Best to eat with ‘stroop‘ (the much better version of maple syrup).

Dutch Pancakes recipe
Click here for the best Dutch recipe

Wentelteefjes (Dutch French toast)

You probably think: wait, isn’t that French toast? And well, yeah kinda! Our name is much better though: it’s translated as ‘turnaround bitches’! Also, forget about ‘semi-skimmed milk’, in the Netherlands we normally use whole milk.

Wentelteefjes Dutch French toast Dutch Recipe
Make ‘turnaround bitches’ with this recipe

Hagelslag (Chocolate sprinkles)

In the Netherlands, we don’t use chocolate sprinkles for cupcake-decoration only. It’s our very typical bread topping actually! Make sure to cover your sandwich with a thick layer of butter first – otherwise, it all falls off your bread. Also really tasty with a layer of peanut butter! It’s possible to make chocolate sprinkles yourself, but we have never tried it!

Coffee Time (a.k.a. Cookie-time)

Dutch people are one of the biggest black coffee drinkers in the world. Of course, you have to eat something sweet with it, much like Swedish fika! We actually have so many (especially cookie-things), but we chose our top 6!


A caramel, molasses filling is sandwiched between thin, crispy layers of dough that have been baked between irons. The best fresh ones in the Netherlands can be found at the Albert Cuypmarket in Amsterdam!

Homemade Stroopwafels
Make stroopwafels

Appelflap (Apple Turnovers)

No clue why we couldn’t find an easier recipe in English, but we usually just mix some diced apple (peeled!), raisins, sugar & cinnamon, fold it into puff pastry, cover the top with more sugar/cinnamon and (optional) some beaten egg to make it nice, crunchy brown. But you could give this fancy version a try!

Appelflappen Apple turnovers Dutch food
Bake Dutch apple turnovers!

Appeltaart (Dutch Apple Pie)

Dutch traditional apple pie is the best. With a lot of whipped cream and – surprise – coffee! Yummy. Best apple pie in Amsterdam: Winkel 43.

Appeltaart, Dutch apple pie recipe

We created the absolute best Dutch apple pie recipe over at our food blog!


We’re actually very excited to have found a recipe for this! You will get sticky while eating this, but man, it’s good. In the Netherlands, you should try one at a real bakery (or at the HEMA).

Tompouce, Dutch sweet

Check out our best (orange) tompouce recipe!

Bossche bol

When in the Netherlands, do yourself a favor and go to Den Bosch (south of the Netherlands) and go try a Bossche bol at Jan de Groot, near the train station. If you can’t make it to the south, try a moorkop in a bakery.

Bossche bol, Dutch delicacy, Chocolate pastry balls
Make this tasty chocolate ball

Drop (Dutch Licorice)

You can find this in any supermarket and candy store. It’s licorice and in the Netherlands, we have so many options: sweet, salty, hard, soft and much more!

Dutch Candy, Drop, Licorice
Make licorice yourself!

Special Occasions

There are some things we eat on special occasions. And although there are many many more regional traditional things, we want to share three of our national traditions.

Beschuit met Muisjes

Literally translated: rusk with little mice. That doesn’t sound very appealing haha. When a baby is born, everyone who comes to see the newborn is treated on a rusk with butter (again: makes it stick) and “muisjes” in either blue or pink (depending on the baby’s sex). It’s made of aniseeds with a sugared, colored layer.

Beschuit met muisjes, Dutch food
Celebrating the baby’s genitals with blue or pink

Kruidnoten/Pepernoten (Dutch Ginger Cookies)

You might’ve heard about the Dutch Santa Claus: Sinterklaas. The North American Santa Claus is actually based on the Dutch Santa Claus: Dutch people in New Amsterdam – NYC – reinvented the Dutch tradition and made it an American one. So in December (and actually months before already), we eat pepernoten, small round cookies!

Kruidnoten, pepernoten, Dutch Ginger Nuts
Best Dutch recipe

Oliebollen (Dutch Doughnuts)

We actually made oliebollen last year during New Year’s Eve in Bangkok. It’s literally translated as ‘oil balls’, and it basically is just that: deep-fried dough balls. Incredibly delicious though.

Dutch doughnuts, oliebollen, Dutch food recipe
Bake Dutch doughnuts!

That was it! We hope you liked this list. Did we miss something? Let us know! Have you tried one of these already? Tell us!! We’d love to hear what you think of ‘our’ food!



Monday 11th of November 2019

Thanks for the interesting feed. Amazing photo. I really liked it!

Roxanne & Maartje

Wednesday 27th of November 2019

Thank you!


Friday 9th of November 2018

Dat zijn geen pepernoten maar kruidnoten. Pepernoten zijn van hetzelfde materiaal als taaitaai gemaakt en vierkanter van de vingerafdrukken. Deze kruidnootjes zijn rond en hebben een heel andere smaak. Leuk artikel trouwens!

Roxanne & Maartje

Friday 9th of November 2018

Klopt helemaal traditioneel gezien, maar kruidnoten worden tegenwoordig ook als pepernoten verkocht en wereldwijd staan ze bekender als pepernoten!

Once Upon a Journey