10 Interesting Canadian Dishes You Should Try

canada food dishes

Over 12 million Americans visited Canada in 2019.

If you’re thinking about taking a vacation in Canada, there is a wide range of activities to keep you busy. From national parks to museums to a hotel made of ice, there’s something for everyone to ensure the whole family has a blast.

Perhaps at the top of this list, however, is giving Canadian dishes a try. If you’ve always been curious about Canadian cuisine, then keep reading to find out what our top must-try dishes are.

Top 10 Must-Try Canadian Dishes

Canadian cuisine is diverse and rich. Must of the food of Canada is inspired by the native First Nations and Inuit people.

Because Canadian food is so rich with culture, Canadian chefs have a hard time pinning down a definitive dish that exemplifies the country’s cuisine. Some say it’s all about using food items that have been produced or grown in Canada. Yet others say it’s all about the poutine and ice wine

Another little known food item to try is soursop. It’s a fruit that can help with pain, lower blood pressure, soothe upset stomachs, and even fight off viral and bacterial infection. It’s considered a Canadian superfood.

It’s next to impossible to get soursop outside of Canada, though there are stores like Soursop Store Canada that are starting to sell and ship the fruit.

Here are our top 10 picks for food to try in Canada:

1. Poutine

Since we mentioned poutine already, we very well can’t leave it off this list, now can we?

Poutine is a delicious mix of crispy fries, cheese curds, and thick gravy poured on top. It’s considered a French Canadian dish and is popular all over the world.

Extra toppings are also favored for poutine. You can opt to get pulled pork, bacon, or any smoked meat of your choice placed on top.

2. Tourtière

Another French Canadian favorite, the tourtière is a savory meat pie. It’s a hearty meal that’ll fill you up after a few bites and is a preferred dish of the holidays.

The recipe for tourtière varies by region and family. Pork, veal, beef, and game are all popular choices of meat filling for the pie.

3. Pouding Chômeur

This French Canadian dessert translates to “the unemployment pudding.”

The pouding chômeur was created during the Great Depression and is considered a traditional dish. The dish was made to help families get through lean times. This pudding is comprised of cake batter topped with hot syrup and will delight your sweet tooth.

4. Nanaimo Bars

This dish was named after the British Columbian city of Nanaimo.

Nanaimo bars are three layers of deliciousness. It’s made of a soft layer of yellow custard between a coconut-graham crust at the bottom and a chocolate ganache as the topping. It is the perfect combination of crunch and soft and is a delightful dessert enjoyed by many.

The history of Nanaimo bars goes back to 1952, where it first appeared in the Nanaimo Hospital Cookbook and was labeled as “chocolate squares.”

5. Tire D’éRable Sur La Neige

Canada is the leading producer of maple syrup, holding a whopping 71% of the global market share. So it makes sense that they’d be well known for their maple taffy.

Tire d’érable sur la neige is a sugary sweet candy made by pouring boiling maple syrup over snow. The cold makes the liquid mixture harden, and then you can roll it up with a popsicle stick and eat it. 

You can find maple taffy at most sugar shacks set up throughout Quebec. The best time to enjoy maple taffy is during the sugar season, which is from March to April. That’s when the sap is the freshest and is collected from maple trees.

6. Beavertail

No, it’s not a real beaver’s tail. A Canadian beavertail is a piece of deep-fried dough that’s slathered in Nutella, Reese’s Pieces, peanut butter, and more.

If you have a sweet tooth that can’t be satiated and don’t mind a tummy ache afterward, a beavertail will be sure to step up to the challenge.

7. Saskatoon Berry Pie

The Saskatoon berry pie is one of the few meals to have an entire city named after it. The city of Saskatoon was founded in 1883 and named after the native berry found there.

This dessert has a sweet and almondy flavor and is rich with Saskatoon berries. Saskatoon berries look similar to gigantic blueberries but taste like a combination of cherries, almonds, and grapes.

8. Butter Tarts

These are much like how they sound. Butter tarts are made by using flaky pastry shells and filling them full of butter, sugar, and egg filling. They’re a Canadian staple, and no visit to Canada is complete without trying these first.

9. Bannock

Bannock is a traditional Canadian dish that was once a staple for the Aboriginal people native to the area. 

Modern bannock now comes in several varieties. You can get the bread baked, which will yield a heavy, dense dough. Or you can have the dough friend, which will result in a crispier and fluffier bread.

Bannock is quite popular as an on-the-go meal when camping. Throw some bacon on top, and you have a whole meal.

10. Nova Scotian Lobster Rolls

With Canada boasting a massive coastline and plenty of lakes and rivers to fish from, it’s little wonder that seafood is popular here. 

A Nova Scotian lobster roll consists of an artisanal hotdog bun filled with chunks of fresh lobster, mayonnaise, lemon zest, lemon juice, chopped chives, and a bit of salt and pepper.

A King’s Feast

As you can see, Canada boasts a massive variety of culturally-diverse dishes that will delight your palate. Whether you’re craving some smoked game or something a bit sweeter, Canadian dishes will not disappoint you.

The next time you visit Canada, be sure to sample all the various cuisines on hand. You never know, you might find your next favorite meal that’ll have you craving to learn how to make it for yourself.

We hope this article helped give you some ideas for what delicious dish to try on your next trip to Canada. If you enjoyed what you read, please browse our site for other interesting facts and stories!

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