Discovering Dutch Cuisine ─ Top Traditional Dishes to Try in the Netherlands

The Netherlands is known for its beautiful landscapes, vibrant cities, and rich cultural heritage. But, did you know that Dutch cuisine is also something to be explored and enjoyed? The Dutch have a unique culinary culture that incorporates a variety of flavours and ingredients, influenced by their history and geography. If you’re planning a trip to the Netherlands with KLM Airways, make sure to try some of the traditional dishes that are must-haves for any foodie.

Here are the top 12 dishes that you must try when in the Netherlands!

1. Dutch Apple Pie


Dutch apple pie, also known as apple tart, is a beloved dessert in the Netherlands. It’s made with a buttery crust and filled with thinly sliced apples, sugar, and cinnamon. The pie is usually served with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Dutch apple pie is a simple yet delicious dessert that’s perfect for any occasion.

2. Herring

Herring is a popular street food in the Netherlands. It’s usually served raw, with the head removed and the tail left on and eaten with raw onions and pickles. Herring is a delicious and healthy snack, high in omega-3 fatty acids. It’s a must-try for anyone visiting the Netherlands.

3. Oliebollen

Oliebollen are small, deep-fried dough balls that are similar to donuts. They are typically eaten during the holiday season and are usually filled with raisins and dusted with powdered sugar. Oliebollen are a sweet treat that can be enjoyed as a snack or dessert.

4. Stroopwafel


Stroopwafel is a thin, crispy waffle cookie with a caramel filling. These cookies are best enjoyed when they are warm and gooey. They are a popular snack in the Netherlands and are often served with coffee or tea. Stroopwafels can be found in most Dutch supermarkets and are a favourite among locals and tourists alike.

5. Poffertjes

Poffertjes are small, fluffy pancakes that are typically served with butter and powdered sugar. They’re a popular street food and are often enjoyed during festivals. Poffertjes are made with a special batter that contains yeast, which gives them their unique fluffy texture. They’re a fun and tasty snack that’s perfect for sharing with friends and family.

6. Stamppot

Stamppot is a traditional Dutch dish made with mashed potatoes and vegetables. It can be served with a variety of toppings, such as smoked sausage, bacon, and gravy. Stamppot is a hearty and comforting meal that’s perfect for the cold winter months. It’s a staple of Dutch cuisine and is enjoyed by people of all ages.

7. Speculaas


Speculaas is a type of spiced cookie that is usually eaten during the holiday season. It’s made with a mixture of spices, including cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, and has a crunchy texture. Speculaas are often shaped into traditional Dutch figures, such as windmills and Sinterklaas. It’s a delicious treat that’s perfect for sharing with family and friends during the holiday season.

8. Bitterballen

Bitterballen is small, deep-fried meatballs that are usually filled with beef ragout. They are often served as a snack with mustard and a cold beer. Bitterballen are a staple of Dutch cuisine and can be found in almost every Dutch snack bar. They’re a delicious and savoury snack that’s perfect for sharing with friends.

9. Kibbeling

Kibbeling is a popular Dutch fast food made from deep-fried chunks of cod. It’s usually served with garlic or tartar sauce and lemon wedges. Kibbeling is a delicious and satisfying snack that’s perfect for a quick lunch or snack on the go. It’s a favourite among locals and tourists alike.

10. Kroketten


Kroketten is a popular snack in the Netherlands, made with a meat ragout filling that is coated in breadcrumbs and deep-fried. They can be found in almost every Dutch snack bar and are usually served with mustard. Kroketten are a delicious and filling snack that’s perfect for satisfying your hunger.

11. Pannekoeken

Pannekoeken is a delicious Dutch treat that resembles a large and thin pancake. The batter is made from flour, eggs, and milk and is cooked in a skillet. The pancake can be topped with a variety of ingredients, such as bacon, cheese, fruit, and syrup. It’s a popular breakfast and brunch item in the Netherlands and can also be found in Dutch restaurants around the world.

12. Genever

Genever is a traditional Dutch liquor that has been around for centuries. It’s made from a blend of malt wine and juniper berries, giving it a flavour profile similar to gin. Genever can be enjoyed neat or in cocktails and is usually served in small tulip-shaped glasses. It’s a popular drink in the Netherlands and is often enjoyed as an aperitif or digestif. Some distilleries in the Netherlands still produce genever using traditional methods, making it a beloved part of Dutch culture.

Overall, discovering Dutch cuisine is an essential part of any trip to the Netherlands. The country’s traditional dishes offer a unique taste of the local culture, and trying them is an excellent way to connect with the local people and their way of life. Whether you are exploring the bustling streets of Amsterdam or venturing out into the quieter Dutch countryside, you are sure to find a wealth of culinary delights to enjoy.

KLM Airways offers a variety of Dutch dishes on their in-flight menu, allowing you to get a taste of the country’s flavours before you even land. And once you arrive, try some local eateries or street vendors to continue your culinary exploration.

Whether you are a fan of sweet treats or savoury snacks, the Netherlands has something to offer you. From the sweet and sticky stroopwafel to the hearty and satisfying stamppot, there are plenty of dishes to suit every taste. And, of course, you can’t forget the country’s famous raw herring, a snack that is both delicious and uniquely Dutch.

So, if you are planning a trip to the Netherlands, be sure to add some of these traditional Dutch dishes to your itinerary. Not only will they give you a taste of the local culture, but they are sure to delight your taste buds and leave you with memories to savour for years to come.

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