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Top 15 Australia’s most Popular Traditional Foods

Barbequed snags

If you’re traveling around Australia, and hanging around with some locals, I’m sure that you will come across some typical Australian food and while you’re here you really should try some of it! From meat you don’t normally find in other supermarkets to chocolate biscuits, to the most common Australian food you should try

Below are 15 Australia most popular Traditional food

1. Chicken parmigiana

Chicken parmigiana
Chicken parmigiana

This classic Aussie chicken dish — with roots in Italian-American cooking — is a staple offering on pretty much every pub menu in the country. Originally eggplant based (and these are still available for vegetarians), it has evolved in to a chicken schnitzel topped with tomato sauce, melted cheese and, if you’re feeling fancy, prosciutto ham. This is typically served with salad and chips, although there’s a split between those who think the chips should be under the parmy and those who think they should be on the side.

2. Barbequed snags (aka sausages)

Barbequed snags
Barbequed snags

It’s no surprise that Aussies love to grill, and nothing is more important to a good barbie than a decent sausage — whether you’re at a mate’s place or at your local DIY store. Traditional Australian sausages are usually pork or beef, but if you’re feeling adventurous, there are other animals to sample. Wrap a slice of bread around your snag and top it off with some fried onions and your favourite sauce.

According to the Australian Meat Industry Council’s Sausage King competition, the best beef snags are found in Wollongong and the best pork bangers come from Mawson, ACT.

3. Lamingtons

Lamingtons
Lamingtons

Widely recognised as the ‘National Cake of Australia’ after the National Trust of Queensland voted this sweet treat an Australian icon, named as it was after Lord Lamington, a former Governor of Queensland.

The lamington is a modest square-shaped sponge dipped in chocolate and coated with desiccated coconut. Other variations include two layers and a cream or jam filling — seen by many as a vital addition. They go perfectly with a nice cup of bush tea, or maybe one of Melbourne’s world-famous coffees, and are available in all good bakeries and cafes.

Although the cake is thought to have been first served in Toowoomba, the national success has seen it take off in cities across Australia. Kytons Bakery in Adelaide is the current award holder for best lamington in Australia.

4. A burger with ‘the lot’

If tomato, lettuce, onions and a juicy meat patty just isn’t enough burger then maybe you should try the Aussie gut-buster with ‘the lot’. Take a burger bun and stuff it with barbequed meat, salad, sauce and, for the Australian twist, add a slice of pineapple, some pickled beetroot and a fried egg. Perfect after a long day surfing or relaxing on the beach. Not ideal for those watching their weight.

According to MTV, the best burger in Australia can be found at Burger Me Fresh in Coolangatta. It might be a long way to go for a meal, but people definitely travel with less incentive than this.

5. Pavlova
Pavlova
Pavlova

Both Australia and New Zealand lay claim to inventing this famous dessert, created in honour of the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova’s visit to Australasia in the 1920s. As a truly Australian after-dinner sweet, the pavlova’s crispy meringue crust, light fruit filling and whipped cream topping ensure it’s a family hit.

Australian claims to the dish lay in a recipe written by a Perth hotel owner in 1935, however recent research says that dish began life in Germany before evolving into its current form in the United States.

Regardless of where it was created, today’s Australian offerings are perfect for those with a sweet tooth.

6. Meat pies

Meat pies
Meat pies

You may think that a pie’s a pie, available in any flavour with any filling. However, a traditional Australian pie should be hand-sized, filled with mincemeat and gravy, and topped with tomato sauce. A gourmet version with mashed potato and mushy peas is also popular, but any other variant surely falls under a different category.

In 2016, the winner of the Great Aussie Pie Competition was the Oven Crisp Bakery in Riverton, WA.

7. Barramundi

 Barramundi
Barramundi

Forget about fish and chips, feast on fresh Australian barramundi, a name which means ‘large-scaled river fish’ in the Aboriginal language in the Rockhampton area. Grilled, fried or seared skin-side first, it’s a much healthier alternative to battered fish, and a true Aussie meal.

Whether you catch your own or sit back and let someone else take care of the hard work, heading up to Queensland gets you some of the best fish in the country.

8. Vegemite on Toast

Not a particularly complicated dish but still a much-loved serving, Vegemite on toast is great for breakfast, lunch or as an anytime snack. Similar to British Marmite, Vegemite is a vegetarian alternative made from yeast extract, and actually not vegetables.

Vegemite on Toast
Vegemite on Toast

To make your own Australian delicacy toast two slices of bread, be liberal with the butter but frugal with the Vegemite. It’s not something you want to slap on like peanut butter or Nutella.

Vegemite, which was created by a Melbournian, is jammed full of Vitamin B which has loads of health benefits, including the belief that it helps keep mozzies at bay.

9. Pumpkin soup

Pumpkin soup
Pumpkin soup

Australia isn’t all about grilled meats and seafood, there are a wide range of vegetarian dishes out there too, including a hearty bowl of pumpkin soup. Best served in the colder months, and those are easiest to find when you head south, there’s something incredibly satisfying about a bowl of pumpkin soup eaten by the fire. Add a Granny Smith apple, which were first grown just outside of Sydney, for an authentic Australian version.

10. Grilled kangaroo

Lean and tasty, kangaroo is one of the healthiest meats around, as well being a national icon. But you better like your steak blue, or at least rare as Skippy is notoriously difficult to cook and can dry out quite easily if left on the barbie too long.

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11. Anzac Cookies

ANZAC stands for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps that fought together during WWI. ANZAC Day is a public holiday in Australia to celebrate the men that fought for the country. During the war, the wives baked these delicious ANZAC cookies to send off to their men at war. They were cheap to make and could stay fresh throughout long boat journeys. They are made with coconut, golden syrup and oats… yum!

traditional australian food - anzac biscuits

12. Fish and Chips

Australians do a bloody good Fish and Chips. OK most English visitors will be quite skeptical of this statement when it comes to Fish and Chips because Australians have yet to master the art of mushy peas, chips and gravy. But considering that the entire country is surrounded by ocean, you are pretty much guaranteed to always get a delicious and fresh piece of fish.

fish and chips

Image By Steven Lilley

13. Avocados

Australians LOVE their Avocados – especially with their eggs and breakfast dishes. In most cafes you will notice that you can order a side of Avocado with your poached, scrambled or fried eggs. You may even notice that the avocado is already included within the breakfast dish. I tried an avocado for breakfast for the first time, smeared on toast and topped with Rocket, Feta and Tomatoes. It was actually quite delicious! Aussies also have a fondness for avocado and Vegemite on toast… don’t knock it until you try it.

popular aussie food - avocadoImage By Kjokkenutstyr

14.  Crab Sticks

Crab Sticks
Crab sticks

This food may be familiar to many people in the world, especially those who love Japanese food. International students in Australia should keep this convenient food in their fridges. When needed, this delicious dish will be ready to satisfy any hunger.

Interestingly enough, crab sticks often contains no crab but kinds of white fish ground into power and shaped like crab legs. This dish becomes even more yummy when it is fried with oil.

15. Tim Tams

Tim Tam
Tim Tam

Tim Tams (also known as miracles) are one of Australian favorites. They are made from two layers of chocolate-malted biscuit separated by a light chocolate filling and coated in chocolate. There are several different flavours including dark chocolate, limited edition coconut, caramel, strawberry, etc., but you definitely can’t go past the original! Australians eat about 45 million packets of Tim Tams each year. The Tim Tam factory in Sydney produces 3,000 biscuits each minute. In case you don’t know about a ‘Tim Tam slam’, this is what you do; bite off the ends of the biscuit, then drink through it like a straw. Use it to drink a warm beverage. It melts the chocolate making it soft and perfect.