Hungarian Cuisine - Taste Budapest

Special Hungarian Dishes

motto: when in Rome, do as the Romans do – when in Hungary, eat like the Hungarians do

Hungarians cuisine is becoming recognised worldwide and loved by many people.

Let’s check out some of the dishes they consider to be typically Hungarian (or eaten by most Hungarians). We give you some short explanation that could come handy when trying to decide. We also include the Hungarian name of the food just in case you don’t get an English menu.

Please feel free to Contact Us to book you in a restaurant. We are locals, so we know the best restaurants that suit your needs and budget. We offer set Hungarian menus as well.
One of our most popular gastro activties:
Goulash Cooking & Wine Tasting and Be a Chef – Gastro School


  • steak tartar = tatár beefsteak / bífstek
  • meat pancake Hortobágy style (with paprika and sour cream) = hortobágyi palacsinta
  • goose liver (paté) = libamáj (pástétom)
  • cold cuts = felvágott
  • (potato / cheese) scone = (krumplis / sajtos) pogácsa


All these can be asked to be spicy.  Yumm Hungarian Paprika!

  • goulash (beware, in Hungary this is a soup not a stew!) = gulyásleves

We traditionally cook Goulash soup in big kettle.

  • fish soup = halászlé

Usually from catfish or carp. You can ask for the fish’s eggs too.

  • bean soup (á la Jókai) = (Jókai) bableves


  • beef/pork/chicken stew / ~ with sour cream= marha/sertés/csirke pörkölt / paprikás
  • Wiener schnitzel (despite the name perhaps the most traditional dish in Hungary) = rántotthús
  • letscho (thick vegetable ragout or stew of yellow pointed peppers, tomatoes, onions with sausage and/or scrambled eggs) = lecsó
  • meat Budapest style = meat with letscho
  • stuffed cabbage/green pepper (with meat and rice, sour cream on top) = töltöttkáposzta / töltöttpaprika
  • ayered potato (with sausages, eggs and sour cream) = rakottkrumpli
  • chicken/turkey in bread crumbs (or breaded chicken…); rántott csirke / pulyka
  • sauerkraut with pork = székelykáposzta
  • sirloin steak (or prime rib) with fried onions = hagymás rostélyos
  • fish in aspic = halkocsonya
  • pig-feast dinner (pork and different types of sausages) = disznótoros


  • strudel (layered pastry with fruit, or curd, or poppy seeds filling)
  • chestnut puree (with whipped cream) = gesztenyepüré
  • trifle (dumplings of sponge-cake with vanilla pudding, chocolate sauce, walnut and whipped cream) = somlói galuska
  • layered pancake (jam, walnut, vanilla pudding, etc.) = rakott palacsinta
  • pancake Gundel style (with walnut filling, chocolate sauce sprinkled with cognac/rum/some kind of alcohol and might be served flambé) = Gundel palacsinta
  • pasta with poppy seeds or walnuts (sweet!)  = mákos- / dióstészta
  • pasta with curd, sour cream and bacon cracklings = túróscsusza


4 very Hungarian and very delicious cakes

Dobos: a sponge cake layered with chocolate and butter cream, topped with hard caramel. Named afterits investor and famous confectioner József Dobos

  • Eszterházy: butter cream infused cognac or vanilla between layers of almond or walnut meringue dough and fondant glaze with chocolate stripes on top. It was named in honour of a prince from the Eszterházy dynasty, one of the main noble families.
  • Rigó Jancsi: cube-shaped chocolate sponge cake with a touch of rum or vanilla and thin layer of apricot jam in between. Rigó Jancsi was a Gypsy violinist also famous for seducing and marrying the wife of a Belgian Prince.
  • Rákóczi Túrós: a layer of short crust, topped with curd (túró) and a lattice of meringue and apricot jam. It was invented relatively recently, in the 1966, by Hungarian pastry chef János Rákoczi.


  • savoury doughnut with (or without) e.g. cheese, sour cream, onions, garlic, bacon – as you like it = lángos
  • chimney cake with cinnamon / vanilla / walnut / etc. topping (not in restaurants but mainly sold in stalls) = kürtőskalács


  • fruit brandy (of any fruit, e.g. plum, apricot, cherry) = pálinka (szilva~, barack~, cseresznye~)
  • Tokay wine (like sweet sherry, the higher number on it, 1-6, the sweeter/finer/more expensive the wine!) = tokaji aszú (1, 2… puttonyos). Hungarian wines are getting world famous for a reason. Try our wine tasting events.


  • curd snack = túró rudi

Composed of a thin chocolate-flavoured outer coating and an inner filling of sweet curd.

Useful Restaurant Hungarian Lingo:

Hello / Bye =                 ‘Sia /see’ya’ (same for both!)

Cheers =                        ‘Eggay-shay-gedrare’ (one word!)

Yes =                             ‘E-gen’ (G as in golf)

No =                              ‘Nem’

Thank you / thanx =      ‘Ker-sir-nerm’ / Kercy

Please =                        ‘Kay-rek’

I’m hungry =                 ‘Ay-hesh vod-yock’

The bill pls. =                ‘Sam-laat kayrek’

Enjoy / Bon Appetite =   ‘ˈYo et-vad-yat’

See the list of our special gastro services.