All around the world, people strive to make delicious food. Fried rice, hamburgers, baklava, the options are endless. Of course, how much someone likes a certain cuisine is completely subjective, but the Internet loves to rank things. So, according to the masses, here are the Top 10 Countries With the Best Food.
10. United States
Defining “American food” has been something many people have tried – and failed – to do. This is because American food comes from all over. Typical American foods, such as the turkey and cranberry sauce you get at Thanksgiving, were invented by Native Americans. Another example is apple pie; the apples came from Kazakhstan, and the pie crust came from England. In other words, American food reflects the United States history as a whole: it’s a mixture of thousands of cultures coming together to form…something. And ultimately, that’s what we love about American cuisine. Because it’s a melting pot of so many different things, it’s impossible to get bored with what you’re eating, and there’s always something for everyone, even the pickiest of eaters. That being said, just because there’s plenty of variety doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s all good for you. Unfortunately, American cuisine is also closely associated with processed and fast foods, meaning that you probably won’t feel great after eating it. But one Happy Meal once in a while surely won’t hurt, so if you ever find yourself peckish during a road trip across the US, why not try a cheeseburger or a chocolate chip cookie to fill your empty stomach?
Whether it’s a tortilla de patatas, paella, or gazpacho, Spain has many iconic foods. The people of Spain like to take their time when eating. They’ll often spread their meals out throughout the day and go for a walk between meals. To start the day right, there’s breakfast, known as el Desayuno, which is the smallest meal of the day and is typically light. It might include cafe con Leche (strong coffee with hot, frothy milk), sweet rolls with jam or mild cheese, or “Maria” crackers dunked in hot milk. Then, of course, there are the tapas, the little meals in between meals. They’re typically eaten well after breakfast but before the mid-afternoon lunch. They vary from region to region, as well as in-between seasons, but you can be sure that tapas will help to keep your appetite at bay. Tapas is something that is well-loved in Spain, so much so, that they made a verb out of it, “Vamos a tapear!” (Let’s go eat tapas!). The best part about tapas is that there are hundreds, maybe even thousands, of varieties, from Spanish omelets to shrimp in garlic sauce; there’s something for everybody! Lunch is the biggest meal of the day and it typically includes multiple courses and wine! Of course, because of all this food, it’s important to pace yourself. Spaniards believe in taking your time and enjoying your meal, which is why you can expect lunch to last at least ninety minutes! Plus, you get to nap afterward. No wonder people love Spanish cuisine so much!
Greece is full of blue seas and beautiful architecture. But it’s not just the landscape that’s beautiful; Greek food has its own kind of beauty. So, whether it be the glistening kalamata olives, the charming feta cheese, the colorful salads, or the mouth-watering roast meats, all of them will please your eyes almost as much as they please your stomach. Because Greece is at the crossroads between Asia and Europe, it gets the best of both worlds. The locals get the chance to pick up techniques, spices, and ingredients from their neighbors, and the visitors get to eat their tasty food! On top of that, the Greeks have been eating well for thousands of years, which means they know a thing or two about making delicious food. Unsurprisingly, Greek food was founded on the “Mediterranean triad”; wheat, olive oil, and wine. Not much has changed over the centuries, as these three ingredients are found in many Greek dishes even today. But those aren’t the only things you’ll find; there’s also an incredible array of cheeses, oils, fruits, nuts, grains, veggies, you name it! These foods add both variety and nutrition to Greek diets. You heard that right, folks; it’s healthy and tasty! And of course, we can’t forget that 20% of Greece is made up of islands, and even the mainland is pretty close to the sea. That means that fish and seafood are also pretty popular. If you don’t like fish, don’t worry, because lamb, goat, poultry, and other meats are in plentiful supply. So, whether it’s spanakopita or gyros, Greece will always have something tasty for you.
With influences from China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and a royal culinary tradition, Thai cuisine is the best of many worlds. One of the reasons Thai cuisine is so widely beloved is because of the clever combination of herbs and spices used in their recipes! Sour, sweet, salty, bitter, and spicy flavors work together to make each dish come alive, and that’s why we love it so much. Thai cooking also emphasizes lightly prepared dishes with strong aromatic components, as well as a spicy edge. Historically, seafood, plants, and herbs are the basis of most meals. Large quantities of meat were mainly avoided, in part due to the Buddhist background of the country, and instead, strips of meat were flavored with herbs and spices, or meat was cooked or roasted and then shredded. While traditional Thai cooking involved a lot of stewing, baking, or grilling, stir-frying and deep-frying became more popular after many Chinese settled in Southeast Asia. To this day, pad thai (fried noodles) and khao pad (fried rice) are considered classic Thai dishes. Thai cuisine is known for demonstrating intricacy, its attention to detail, texture, color, taste, and the use of varied ingredients, all while tasting delicious. In other words, every single part of a Thai dish has been thought through with care. It’s about fitting all the elements together to create a harmonious finish, and the result is something truly wonderful. If you’re ever in Thailand, do yourself a favor and pick up some tom yam kung!
If you were ever forced to only eat one type of food for the rest of your life, it would be smart to choose Mexican cuisine. Why? Because they have a little bit of everything, so you’ll never get bored. There are the classics like enchiladas, tacos, and quesadillas, but you can also find the zestiness of Greek salads, the richness of an Indian curry, and the heat of Thai food. The origins of Mexican cuisine can be traced back to 7000 BCE when Mexico and Central America had yet to be colonized. Back then, indigenous people roamed the area and survived by hunting animals and gathering plants. One of the most common plants in the area was the wild chile pepper, which they ate frequently.500 years later, corn was domesticated and became part of their diets, which is when tortillas and other types of corn-based bread started popping up. Meat was scarce in the area, so the indigenous people had a difficult time collecting enough protein. To make up for this, they ate a lot of beans, which would be served as a side with most meals, along with corn. When the Spanish colonized Mexico, they brought many of their own ingredients, recipes and dishes into indigenous cultures, like rice, olive oil, garlic, coriander, cinnamon, and other spices. As a result, Mexican cuisine is a blend of indigenous and Spanish cuisine. So, while it is still based on beans, corn, tortillas, and chile peppers, these are now usually served with some sort of meat and cheese. If you want to get a taste for yourself, don’t hesitate to stop by your local Mexican restaurant!
China has the largest population in the whole world, making its cuisine both incredibly diverse and impressive. Because it’s one of the oldest civilizations on earth, China has had a long time to perfect every single aspect of its dishes, and you can definitely tell. By being one of the first Asian civilizations to achieve stability and regular growth, China very quickly managed to acquire a very specific taste in food that enabled its cuisine to grow and change at an incredible pace. The development of Chinese cuisine can be attributed to many different factors, including the sheer diversity of ingredients, the constant absorption of foreign cuisine via trading, or the elaborate history of traditional medicine, which saw food as the basis of good health. Ultimately, according to archaeologist and scholar Kwang-Chih Chang, Chinese cuisine is marked by both variety and change. Because food is at the center of many social interactions in China, it makes sense that so much attention and care is put into it. China is full of good food, from sweet and sour pork to dim sum, and the regional cuisines are so varied, you’ll never get through them all. That being said, no one said you couldn’t try. It’s hard to encapsulate the entirety of Chinese cuisine, so all we can say is you better have room for seconds!
Indian cuisine is meant to be eaten socially, in groups, until everyone is satisfied. There’s plenty of variety to be found: mild, sweet, hot, and spicy, simple vegetarian dishes or ones layered with texture and flavor. Whatever the dish, one thing you can be sure of, is the fact that great care is taken in the planning and preparation of every meal. Indian cuisine dates back over 5000 years, and while each region has its own traditions, religions, and cultures to influence its food, there is a common thread that strings them together: the distinct mixing of certain spices. These spices give Indian cuisine its popular aroma. If you want something sweet, why not try kheer, a combination of basmati rice, milk, raisins, sugar, cardamom seed, and almonds? Or maybe kulfi, an Indian ice cream made by boiling reduced milk, which is then chilled and then flavored with mango juice, rose water, and sweetened with sugar. Lastly, no one could forget chai, a tea commonly enjoyed each morning. It is made by adding milk, sugar, and black cardamom pods to steeped teabags. No matter what you order, you can know for certain that the combination of spices is going to blow your mind away. Plus, the fact that they can make vegetarian food taste consistently good – something other cultures have struggled with – is definitely a plus.
Japan is known for many things: anime, cat cafes, and the busy streets of Tokyo, to name a few. But, one of the wonders of going to Japan is the food. While many people think they have a solid idea of what Japanese cuisine looks like, there’s actually a lot more to it than what meets the eye. Japanese cuisine has been influenced by many other cultures. Take, for example, tempura. This popular dish actually originates from a Portuguese word. It refers to the time or rather Quatuor tempora or ember days, which was a religious fast when people couldn’t eat meat, so they consumed fish. Typically, the Portuguese would fry their fish in batter. Even soy sauce, a staple of Japanese food, was only introduced around a century ago by people from China. In fact, many of Japan’s cultural and even culinary traditions came from China and Korea in particular. The most important of these is rice, which only arrived in Japan at the end of the Neolithic Period, about 2,400 years ago, when immigrants came from the mainland. No matter what the origin, it seems as though Japanese people have a way of perfecting their cuisine. If you’re ever in the mood for Japanese food, why not try some tempura to satiate your appetite?
French cuisine was developed throughout the centuries and influenced by the many surrounding cultures and countries, including Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, and Belgium. Undoubtedly, France is home to some of the most popular food in the world. There are even entire two-week vacations centered around exploring the combinations of wines and cheeses the country has to offer! But have you ever wondered what a true French meal would look like? Well, look no further! As always, the day starts with breakfast, le petit dejeuner. This is traditionally a quick meal consisting of French bread with butter and honey or jam. Of course, those aren’t the only options; you can have savory breakfasts as well, such as mouillettes, and sometimes the kids will even have hot chocolate along with their breakfasts! After breakfast is lunch, dejeuner, which can be a two-hour mid-day meal or a one-hour lunch break. Wow, where can we sign up for that? In larger cities, many people will eat their lunch at a cafeteria, but, like a lot of other places, many people choose to bring lunch from home. Lastly is dinner, which often consists of three courses: the appetizers, the main course, and either a cheese course or dessert. No matter what meal you’re eating, you can be sure that French cooking is always going to be good. In fact, it’s so good that knowledge of French cooking has contributed significantly to Western cuisine, and its methods are widely used in Western cooking schools and general culinary education! In other words, if you can cook French food, you can cook a whole lot of other stuff, too.
Ah, Italy, home to pizza, ravioli, and Mario. Italian food has been captivating our taste buds for centuries, and it’s doesn’t look like it’s going to stop anytime soon. Whether it be the zesty tomato sauce or the olive oil and garlic, all Italian food will have you seeing heaven. From the cheesy risottos to the crisp fried meats, Italian cuisine is a compendium of crowd-pleasing comfort food. Many people have welcomed it into their homes, especially novice cooks. This is our favorite part about Italian food: while it tastes delicious, there are plenty of recipes that are easy and accessible for everyone to make. Grab some noodles, olive oil, garlic, and tomatoes, and bam, you’ve got something tasty. So, whether you like making spaghetti or lasagna, there’s always a delicious Italian dish waiting to be made. If you’re in the mood for Italian, why not try making spaghetti bolognaise or maybe some homemade pizza? Your taste buds will thank you.