4 Foods You Should Try in The Netherlands (Besides Stroopwafel)

I feel like I’ve mentioned stroopwafel enough times already. (If you’ve somehow missed that or need a refresher, click here, here, or even here.)

But there’s other delicious food to be had in the Netherlands! SO EAT SOME OF THIS STUFF TOO.

1. Hollandse Nieuw

This is the national dish of the Netherlands! It’s raw fish, and it’s weirdly delicious. There are fish stalls all over the place, so don’t be shy! Just sidle on up to one and grab a herring. We got ours at Stubbe’s Haring.

Dutch raw herring | The Netherlands | The Travel Medley

Wait what?? Who thought this was a good idea?

Dutch raw herring | The Netherlands | The Travel Medley

The Dutch! They love this stuff, and have been eating herring like this for 600+ years.

Dutch raw herring | The Netherlands | The Travel Medley

Yep. Brined fish with chopped onions and pickles. I know it sounds gross, but it’s actually pretty good. (A thousand times better than the cow stomach I ate in Florence.)

2. Pannekoeken


Dutch pancakes are officially the most superior type of pancakes and you MUST eat them if you go to the Netherlands. This is non-negotiable.

The Pancake Bakery in Amsterdam is a great place to slip into a pancake coma.

Dutch pancakes | The Netherlands | The Travel Medley

Dutch pancakes are thin and delicious and come with all manners of toppings.

Sweet? Savory?

Dutch pancakes | Amsterdam | The Netherlands

The answer is YES. You can have both. The Dutch got you covered.

3. Rijsttafel

Backstory: Indonesia was a former Dutch colony. And over the years, Indonesian food was adopted into the Dutch culture. Rijsttafel literally translates to “rice table” and describes an elaborate meal made up of 10+ different small dishes.

We got our Rijsttafel at Aneka Rasa in Amsterdam.

Here are some prawn crackers and peanut sauce as an appetizer.

Rijsttafel | Amsterdam | The Travel Medley

And THIS was the full spread.

Rijsttafel | Amsterdam | The Travel Medley

Pictured: steamed rice, fried rice, roasted chicken in peanut sauce, spicy beef in coriander sauce, veal in soy sauce, chicken in saffron and coconut milk, green beans in a spicy coconut sauce, mixed veggies, salad with peanut sauce, mixed veggies in a sweet and sour dressing, sweet potatoes, fried shredded coconut, stewed eggs in Balinese sauce, and fried bananas.

So if you’re like me and have trouble deciding what to order at a restaurant, you can basically just order a small taste of everything at an Indonesian restaurant in the Netherlands. Happy rijsttafel-ing!

4. Appeltaart

The Dutch have a talent for taking foods that I already love and then making them even better. First the pancakes, now the apple pie.


Apple pie | Amsterdam | The Travel Medley

Notice the two forks. We totally shared one piece. (Even though I’m pretty sure I could have easily eaten an entire pie by myself.)

Dutch apple pie comes with a thick, crumbly crust, that tastes more like a streusel or a pastry than traditional pie crust. (And of course, the generous dollop of whipped cream doesn’t hurt either.)

Apple pie | Amsterdam | The Travel Medley

We got ours at Winkel.

Each piece is thick and delicious, with chunks of sweetened apples, brown sugar, and cinnamon. It’s like the deep-dish version of apple pie, and it is phenomenal.



  • Hollandse nieuw (uncooked herring with pickles and onions)
  • Pannekoeken (Dutch pancakes)
  • Rijsttafel (a million small Indonesian dishes)
  • Appeltaart (deep-dish Dutch apple pie)

And if you need recommendations for places in Amsterdam, go to: Stubbe’s Haring, The Pancake Bakery, Aneka Rasa, and Winkel.

{Note: People are not paying me to say these things. I wish they were. I just enjoyed these places and am spreading the love.}

Bon appetit! Eet smakelijk!


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