Top 8 Best Austrian Dishes to Try While in Austria + Local Advice

Last Updated on March 28, 2021

Here you can read our guide guide on eating out opportunities in Austria, including top essential best typical Austrian dishes you should try on your Austria visit and eat like a local. If you like hearty, wholesome flavors then you’ll love Austria. Just a few hours flight away from the UK, Austria is the perfect holiday for those who love indulging in excellent gastronomy. Austrian food is a mix of central European flavors and produce, and it combines textures in a unique way.


Quite similar to German food (but not as heavy), Austrian food usually features meat or poultry, big root vegetables, dairy and a variety of grains. The cuisine is quite focused on desserts, with Austria producing a plethora of popular branded biscuits and cakes, not to mention the amount of cafes selling fantastic – and often elaborate – sweets to have alongside a well-deserved cup of coffee.

Best Austrian Dishes

1. Dumpling soup

Dumplings come in all shapes and sizes, with almost every country in the world having their own version. Austrians love dumplings and they enjoy contrasting the texture with a clear soup. The soup here is usually a simple broth, made out of root vegetables like turnips, parsnips and celeriac.

The dumplings are the best past, and some popular ones are bacon dumplings, liver dumplings and pork dumplings. You might find strips of pancake used as an alternative.

For an upmarket take on these, try at Himmelstrasse 4 | Grinzing, Vienna 1190, Austria

2. Tafelspitz

This is an incredibly tasty boiled beef dish that is an Austrian favorite. While boiled beef might not sound appealing, the meat used is very lean.


Tafelspitz

It is boiled in broth, usually made with root vegetables and bone marrow, and served with roast potatoes, spinach, soda bread and even something familiar to our dinner tables – horseradish!

Try some tafelspitz at aptly named Tafelspitz Frühstücksbuffet, Braunau, Austria

3. Backhendl

This is similar to breaded meat cutlets but instead it’s a whole breaded chicken! You’ll find Backhendl in most pub-type establishments and it is staple Austrian food, influenced from Hungry. It is usually served with a salad or pasta.

Backhendl

Try at Kremser Strasse 17 | 3610 Weissenkirchen, Weissenkirchen 3610, Austria

4. Bosna

These are a delicious snack, very informal, and you’ll find them served by street vendors. No trip to Austria would be complete without some form of wurst and these are the spiced variety, served in a hot dog roll. They might be fast food, but in Austria fast food is also good food. Try at a local street vendor, which most of the main streets will have.


5. Apfelstrudel

This is a long pastry-filled jacket filled with a delicious apple filling. The filling in Apfelstrudel consists of grated cooking apples, sugar, cinnamon, raisins and sometimes breadcrumbs (to bind the mixture and provide some further density). If you’re in Austria, you can’t go home without trying this very Austrian sweet.

Austria

You can get Apfelstrudel in cafes and sweet shops, which the city is littered with.

6. Palatschinken

A traditional dessert, palatschinken is similar to French crepes. If you visit Austria during Christmas time you almost certainly see these being made fresh at the spectacular Christmas markets.

Palatschinken

They are often filled with jam (blackcurrant is a particular favorite) and then sprinkled with sugar. There are also savoury versions of palatschinken which might be filled with cheese and ham or spinach.

You can get palatschinken in cafes, and there are plenty of those to find and choose from.

7. Kärntner Kasnudeln

Did you ever think that pasta could be made from cheese? Well these are exactly that! They come from the Austrian province, Carinthia, and are drizzled with butter or herbs when served. They look a bit like Italian tortellini when prepared and are extra delicious when stuffed with bacon lardons and spinach.

Try these at LOY-Stub’n in Carinthia, it always receives rave reviews.

8. Jägertee

Time for a tipple. This famous winter drink is keenly downed by those who come here to ski as it’s so warming. It’s made using sugar, spices, tea, spiced rum, brandy and orange juice.
Try Jägertee at your local tavern.