Lithuanian Food: 10 Traditional Dishes to Try

Lithuania is a fascinating European country that is often overlooked. This beautiful country is located in the Baltic region and has a long and rich history.

Lithuania

Lithuanian cuisine has evolved over many centuries. Today, Lithuanian food is quite hearty and features many animal products. Some of the most popular Lithuanian dishes include Cepelinai (potato and meat dumplings), Saltibarsciai (cold beet soup), and Zeppelins (stuffed potato dumplings). Lithuanian food is often garnished with fresh vegetables, bacon, and sour cream.

It’s also known for its wide variety of bread, as well as pastries such as šakotis (a tree-shaped cake) and spurgos (cream puffs). Lithuanians typically enjoy meals with their family and friends, often spending hours at the table chatting and enjoying each other’s company. Lithuanian food is meant to be shared and enjoyed, not simply eaten.

Lithuanian cuisine is based on the traditional staples of potatoes, rye bread, pork, and dairy products. While this may not sound like the most exciting food in the world, Lithuanian dishes are surprisingly tasty and varied. Here are ten traditional Lithuanian dishes that you should try:

Cepelinai

Lithuanian potato dumpling

Cepelinai

These large potato dumplings are stuffed with meat (usually pork or beef) and served with sauteed onions and a sour cream sauce. Cepelinai are sometimes called “zeppelins” due to their unique shape.

Saltibarsciai

cold beetroot soup

Saltibarsciai

This traditional Lithuanian soup is made of buttermilk, sour cream, cucumbers, dill, pickles, and beetroot. It’s served cold (hence the name, which means “chilled”) with boiled potatoes and is a refreshing dish for a hot summer day.

Kugelis

potato pudding/casserole

Kugelis

This dish is a type of potato pudding that is popular in Lithuania. It is usually made with grated potatoes, eggs, and onions, and then baked in an oven. Kugelis can be served as a side dish or main course and is often topped with bacon or sour cream.

Skilandis

smoked sausage

Skilandis

Skilandis is a smoked sausage that is popular in Lithuania. It is made from pork, beef, or lamb and is typically seasoned with garlic, salt, and pepper. Skilandis is often eaten as a cold cut or can be cooked and served hot.

lietiniai blynai su varske

Lithuanian pancakes with cottage cheese

lietiniai blynai su varske

Lietiniai blynai are thin pancakes, similar to crepes, that are popular in Lithuania. They are often made with cottage cheese (varske), which gives them a slightly sweet flavor. Serve lietiniai blynai with fruit or jam for a delicious breakfast or snack.

Balandėliai

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Balandėliai

These are traditional Lithuanian dish that is usually served during Lent. Balandėliai is made by wrapping cabbage leaves around a filling of minced meat, rice, and spices. They are then boiled in water or broth and served with a dollop of sour cream on top.

varskes apkepas

cottage cheese pudding

varskes apkepas

These little Cloud-like pudding are made from cottage cheese and cream, eggs, sometimes flavored with raisins or other dried fruit. It is served as a sweet dessert, or with a bit of sour cream as a delicious dish.

Bulviniai vėdarai

potato Sausage

Bulviniai vėdarai

These potato “sausages” are a staple of Lithuanian cuisine. They are made with potatoes, flour, and egg, and then fried in butter. They are usually served with bacon and sour cream.

Varškės spurgos

Lithuanian curd Donuts

Varškės spurgos

These delightful fried balls of cottage cheese goodness are a must-try when in Lithuania. They are often served as a side dish or snack and can be enjoyed plain or with a fruit filling.

Šakotis

Lithuanian Spit cake

Šakotis

Šakotis is a traditional Lithuanian dessert that is made by stacking thin layers of dough on top of each other and then baking them. The result is a cake that is light and airy, with a slightly crunchy texture. It is often served with fruit or whipped cream and can be made in either a round or rectangular shape.

No matter what you’re in the mood for, Lithuanian food is sure to please. So next time you’re looking for a new cuisine to try, be sure to give Lithuanian food a chance. You won’t be disappointed!


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