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Croatian cuisine

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In this page talks about ( Croatian cuisine ) It was sent to us on 27/07/2021 and was presented on 27/07/2021 and the last update on this page on 27/07/2021

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Croatian cuisine is heterogeneous and is known as a cuisine of the regions, since every region of Croatia has its own distinct culinary tradition. Its roots date back to ancient times. The differences in the selection of foodstuffs and forms of cooking are most notable between those in mainland and those in coastal regions. Mainland cuisine is more characterized by the earlier Slavic and the more recent contacts with Hungarian and Turkish cuisine, using lard for cooking, and spices such as black pepper, paprika, and garlic. The coastal region bears the influences of the Greek and Roman cuisine, as well as of the later Mediterranean cuisine, in particular Italian (especially Venetian). Coastal cuisines use olive oil, herbs and spices such as rosemary, sage, bay leaf, oregano, marjoram, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and lemon and orange rind. Peasant cooking traditions are based on imaginative variations of several basic ingredients (cereals, dairy products, meat, fish, vegetables, nuts) and cooking procedures (stewing, grilling, roasting, baking), while bourgeois cuisine involves more complicated procedures and use of selected herbs and spices. Charcuterie is part of the Croatian culinary tradition in all regions. Food and recipes from other former Yugoslav countries are also popular in Croatia.
Croatian cuisine can be divided into several distinct cuisines (Istria, Dalmatia, Dubrovnik, Lika, Gorski Kotar, Zagorje, Međimurje, Podravina, Slavonija) each of which has specific cooking traditions, characteristic for the area and not necessarily well known in other parts of Croatia. Most dishes, however, can be found all across the country, with local variants.

Meat and game

  • Specialities from the grill are called s roÅ¡tilja, those roasted on the spit s ražnja
  • pečeno means roasted
  • prženo means fried
  • pod pekom means that the dish has been put into a stone oven under a metal cover. The cook puts hot coals on the cover so that the meal is cooked slowly in its own juices. Specialties cooked pod pekom include lamb, veal, and octopus.
  • na leÅ¡o means boiled in broth or water (lamb, beef, fish)
, northern Croatia
Croatian meat-based dishes include:
  • Pork
  • MijeÅ¡ano meso or Ražnjići (skewers)
  • Zagrebački odrezak (Veal steaks stuffed with ham and cheese, breaded and fried)
  • Å nicle (schnitzel) – breaded veal, pork or chicken cutlets
  • – pork ham from MeÄ‘imurje County
  • Janjetina – roasted lamb garnished with Mediterranean herbs
  • Odojak – roasted suckling pig
  • Fresh game from Dalmatia
  • Visovačka begavica
  • Turkey with mlinci (flat pasta, soaked in roast juices)
  • Buncek – smoked pork hock, used in bean, sauerkraut or kale stews
  • Leg of lamb à la PaÅ¡ticada
  • Leg of venison the count's way
  • Wild duck with sauce
  • Polpete, faÅ¡iranci – Frikadeller

  • Roasted pheasant
  • Kotlovina from Samobor (kettle with knuckle of pork and other meat and sausages)
  • Boiled fillet of beef haunch with Sauerkraut
  • Escalope à la Baron Trenk (spicy-rolled Schnitzel)
  • MeÄ‘imurje Goose (stuffed with buckwheat)
  • Turopolje Goose (with corn semolina as a side dish)
  • Purgerica Turkey (Christmas dish from the bordering region to Zagreb, turkey filled with chestnuts, apples, bacon, lemons, etc.)
  • Krvavice, or čurke, blood sausages, made of blood and kaÅ¡a
  • Hladetina, a particular type of head cheese
  • Brački vitalac
  • Edible dormouse – eaten on the Dalmatian coast according to Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern.


from Dalmatia
Croatian seafood dishes include:
  • Squid – Croatian: lignje, Italian: calamari, grilled, fried, stuffed or prepared as stew and served with polenta
  • Octopus salad – Croatian: salata od hobotnice; octopus can also be prepared brudet style, with red wine, or baked pod pekom
  • Cuttlefish risotto – Croatian: Crni rižot, Italian: Risotto nero
  • Tuna
  • Scampi – Croatian: Å¡kampi, Italian: scampi
  • Common mussels – Croatian: dagnje
  • Salted cod is imported, but dishes are very popular for Christmas Eve or on Good Friday. It can be prepared either as bakalar na bijelo (Dubrovnik, Dalmatia and Istria, with olive oil and garlic, with or without potatoes), or as bakalar na crveno, in tomato-based stew, with potatoes.
  • Fish stew – Croatian brodet or brudet (Dubrovnik and Dalmatia), Italian brodetto, best made with several type of fish (red rascasse, European conger, monkfish, European hake)

  • Clams
  • Sea spider salad
  • Breaded catfish or carp
  • Grilled sardines or other fish (na gradele)
  • Salted anchovies or sardine (slana riba) are served as hors d'oeuvres or as a part of light supper with povrće na leÅ¡o, salads etc.
  • Buzara or buzzara (shellfish sautéed in garlic, olive oil, parsley & white wine)
  • Date shells or prstaci are part of the traditional cuisine, but in the 20th century their extraction was banned as a measure of ecological protection


Stewed vegetables with a small amount of meat or sausages (varivo or čušpajz) is perceived as a healthy, traditional meal. Sour cream (in Northern Croatia) or olive oil (on the coast) can be added to the plate just before serving. Stewed meat dishes are often prepared by men in open spaces, following hunting and shepherding traditions. In Dalmatian urban cuisine, spices such as cinnamon and clove, dried plums, dried figs, apples and other fruit are sometimes added to meat stews.
File:Gulyas080.jpgthumbGoulash is very popular in most parts of Croatia
  • Goulash (Croatian: gulaÅ¡, see also Hungarian gulyás)
  • Grah – pork hock bean stew (often done as grah i zelje – with sauerkraut, or grah s kiselom repom – with pickled turnip strings)
  • Varivo od mahuna – green beans stew
  • Riblji paprikaÅ¡ – also called fiÅ¡-paprikaÅ¡ (spicy fish stew from Slavonia, see also Hungarian halászlé)
  • Slavonska riblja čorba (fish stew from Slavonia)
  • Brudet (or Brodet) – fish stew
  • Chicken stew
  • Rabbit goulash
  • Ričet, also known as jačmik, orzo

  • Istrian stew (Jota)
  • PaÅ¡ta fažol – bean stew with small pasta
  • Game ÄŒobanac (Shepherd's Stew)
  • Feines Venison goulash with prunes
  • Hunter's stew
  • Wine goulash
  • Sauerkraut stew
  • Zelena menestra – traditional cabbage and meat dish – Dubrovnik and surrounding area
  • PaÅ¡ticada – Dalmatian beef stew with prunes and dried figs
  • Tripe stew (tripice, fileki)


Pasta is one of the most popular food items in Croatian cuisine, especially in the region of Dalmatia. Manistra na pome (pasta with tomato sauce) is a staple. The other popular sauces include creamy mushroom sauce, minced meat sauce and many others. Fresh pasta ( , ) is added to soups and stews, or prepared with cottage cheese, cabbage, even with walnuts or poppy seed. Potato dough is popular, not only for making (gnocchi), but also for making plum or cheese dumplings which are boiled, and then quickly fried in breadcrumbs and butter.
  • Žganci – cornmeal dish in Slovenian and Northern Croatian cuisine, also known as polenta (palenta, pura) in Istria and Dalmatia
  • Gnocchi, often served with paÅ¡ticada or goulash
  • Fuži, a typical pasta from Istria
  • Needle macaroni

  • Å trukli – baked or cooked filled pastry from Zagorje, Zagreb area.
  • Krpice sa zeljem – pasta with stewed cabbage
  • Å porki makaruli – traditional pasta with cinnamon-flavored meat sauce, from Dubrovnik and surrounding area

File:Kuhane_strukle_0210_1.jpgZagorski Å trukli


Soup is an integral part of a meal in Croatia and no Sunday family meal or any special occasion will go without it. The most popular soups are broth-based, with added pasta or semolina dumplings. They are usually light in order to leave space for the main course and dessert to follow. However, cream or roux-based soups are also popular, and there are many local variations of traditional soups.
In Dalmatia, fish soup with fish chunks, carrots and rice is commonly served.
  • ManeÅ¡tra
  • Veal soup with smoked meat
  • Beef broth with vermicelli pasta
  • Mushroom soup, especially with porcini
  • Dill soup
  • Zagorska juha with porcini mushrooms, bacon, sweet pepper
  • Prežgana juha
  • Chicken soup

Side dishes

  • SataraÅ¡ (sliced and stewed summer vegetables)
  • Mlinci (typical northwest Croatian, roasted flatbread, similar to Caucasian flatbreads)
  • Đuveč (baked summer vegetables, similar to Ratatouille)
  • Å alÅ¡a od pomidora (tomato salsa)
  • Restani krumpir (cooked potato fried with onion)
  • Blitva s krumpirom (cooked chard and potato, with olive oil and garlic)
  • Povrće na leÅ¡o (boiled vegetables seasoned with olive oil, salt and sometimes garlic) is a common way of preparing chard, kale, cabbage, green beans, potato, cauliflower, carrots, broad beans, zucchini and other vegetables as a side dish. It combines well with boiled eggs, as a lighter alternative to a meat- or fish-based meal.


File:Truffles white Croatia.jpg250pxthumbWhite truffles from Istria
250pxthumbrightPunjena paprika Stuffed peppersCroatian-style stuffed peppers
200pxthumbCheese Å¡kripavac
  • Zagrebački odrezak – breaded escalope stuffed with ham and cheese, type of cordon bleu
  • Punjena paprika – peppers filled with minced meat (Hungarian: töltött paprika)
  • Sarma – Sauerkraut rolls filed with minced pork meat and rice
  • ArambaÅ¡ići from Sinj – similar to Sarma, but made with finely diced beef and without rice
  • Lepinje – flat bread
  • Wild truffles, served on pasta, risotto, or fried eggs (fritaja)
  • Croatian olive oil (Maslinovo ulje)
  • PaÅ¡ki baÅ¡kotin – aromatic zwieback (rusk) from the Island of Pag

  • Potatoes from the region of Lika (Lički krumpir) – high-quality, large, red potatoes
  • Sauerkraut from the Varaždin region
  • Cabbage (zelje) from the region of Zagreb
  • Artichokes with peas or broad beans
  • Fritaja with asparagus
  • Gorski kotar filling (pieces of ham with eggs and bread)
  • ÄŒvarci

Sausages and ham

  • Kulen (Kulin) – spicy pork sausage from Slavonia
  • ÄŒeÅ¡njovka – spicy pork sausage with a harmonious garlic taste from Turopolje
  • Kobasica – spicy, air-dried or smoked sausage (Hungarian: kolbász)
  • Salami from Samobor
  • Å vargl from Slavonia
  • SuÄ‘uk from inland Dalmatia

  • Istrian and Dalmatian PrÅ¡ut – dry-cured ham
  • Ćevapčići
  • Panceta from Dalmatia
  • Å pek from continental Croatia
  • KaÅ¡tradina – smoked mutton or goat meat
  • Ombolo

Cheese (sir)

  • PaÅ¡ki sir – famous sheep's milk cheese from island of Pag
  • Farmers' cheese (Å¡kripavac) and curd cheese from the regions of Kordun and Lika
  • Cheese from the Cetina region Cetinski sir
  • Cheese from the Island of Krk Krčki sir
  • Cheese from MeÄ‘imurje TuroÅ¡
  • Cheese from Podravina Prga
  • Cottage cheese (eaten with cream, vrhnje) from Zagorje (sir i vrhnje, often seen as quintessential Croatian traditional food)
File:Poğaça bread.jpgthumb200pxPogača bread

Savoury pies

  • ViÅ¡ka pogača is a salted sardine-filled foccacia from the island of Vis.
  • Soparnik is a Dalmatian chard-filled pie.


  • Pita
  • Pogača (farmers' bread)
  • Povitica
File:Strudel.jpgthumbSavijača or Štrudla with apple
File:orehnjaca.jpgthumbOrehnjača, a variety of nut roll
File:Crepes dsc07085.jpgthumbCrêpes, in Croatia also known as Palačinke
File:Međimurska gibanica (Croatia).jpgthumbMeđimurska gibanica
  • Bučnica (summer squash and cottage cheese pie, can be savory or sweet)
  • Å trukli (made with cottage cheese, sour cream and eggs, can be savory or sweet, boiled or baked)
  • Zlevanka, simple baked cornmeal pastry with various fillings (e.g. cheese, sour cream, cherries, plum jam, walnuts, nettle)
  • Varaždinski klipići

Sweets and desserts

  • Palačinke (crepes) with sweet filling (Hungarian: palacsinta)
  • Baklava
  • KremÅ¡nita –
  • Å aumÅ¡nita –
  • Zagorski Å¡trukli – sweet pastry from northern Croatia
  • UÅ¡tipci
  • Fritule
  • Knedle – potato dough dumplings, usually filled with plums and rolled into buttered breadcrumbs
  • Strudel (Croatian: or ) with apple or curd cheese fillings
  • Orahnjača and Makovnjača – sweet breads with walnut or poppy seeds
  • Croatian honey
  • Bear's paw
  • Farmer's cheese (quark) cakes (cream cake)
  • Krafne, pokladnice – a type of doughnut
  • Croatian pancakes (with wine and egg sauce)
  • Å nenokli, paradižot (meringue in custard cream, floating island (dessert))
  • Almond filled ravioli ( )
  • Homemade fruit preserves, jams, compotes
  • ÄŒupavci (lamingtons)

Cakes (kolači)

  • Rožata or Rozata (flan, creme caramel)
  • Easter pastry Pinca
  • KroÅ¡tule (crunchy, deep-fried pastry)
  • Fritule (deep-fried dough, festive pastry, particularly for Christmas)
  • Bishop's bread
  • Guglhupf ring cake (Croatian kuglof)
  • Rapska torta (Rab cake)
  • MeÄ‘imurska gibanica (MeÄ‘imurje County layer cake with apple, poppyseed, walnut and cottage cheese fillings)
  • Makarana torta
  • Imotska torta
  • MaÄ‘arica (Croatian layer cake)



Croatia has two main wine regions: Continental (Kontinetalna) and Coastal (Primorska), which includes the islands. Each of the main regions is divided into sub-regions which are divided yet further into smaller vinogorje, (literally wine hills) and districts. Altogether, there are more than 300 geographically-defined wine-producing areas in Croatia. In parts of Croatia, wine, either red or white, is sometimes consumed mixed in approximately equal proportions with water.

Dessert wines

  • Sweet Malvazija
  • MuÅ¡kat Ottonel (see: Muscat grape)
  • ProÅ¡ek

White wines

  • Rajnski Rizling
  • Žlahtina
  • Malvazija
  • GraÅ¡evina

Red wines

  • Babić
  • Plavac Mali
  • Postup

Beers (pivo)

File:Velebitsko pivo Zg 0508.jpg100pxthumbVelebitsko pivo, beer from Croatia
Apart from imported beers (Heineken, Tuborg, Gösser, Stella Artois, etc.), there are home-brewed and locally brewed beers in Croatia. A brewery based in Split produces Bavarian Kaltenberg beer by licence of the original brewery in Germany.
  • Karlovačko: brewed in Karlovac
  • Ožujsko: brewed in Zagreb (the name refers to the month of March)
  • Pan
  • Favorit: from Buzet, Istria
  • Osječko: from Osijek (oldest brewery in Croatia)
  • Staro ÄŒeÅ¡ko: Czech beer from Daruvar (where a Czech minority lives), brewed in Croatia
  • Tars pivo: from the seaport city of Rijeka
  • Tomislav: dark beer from Zagreb
  • Velebitsko pivo: brewed near Gospić on the Velebit mountain, the dark beer has been voted best beer by an English beer fan website.

Liqueurs and spirits

thumb80pxrightA bottle of Maraschino liqueur.
  • Maraschino
  • Rakija (Croatian name for spirits), commonly made from: Lozovača / Loza (grapes) (it.: Grappa),Travarica (Loza with herbs), Å ljivovica (plums), KruÅ¡kovac (pears), Drenovac (cherries)
  • Pelinkovac
  • Orahovac (walnut liqueur)
  • Medovina (honey)
  • Gvirc (as Medovina, only more alcohol).


Croatia is a country of coffee drinkers (on average 5kg per person annually), not only because it was formerly part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire, but also because it bordered the former Ottoman Empire. Traditional coffee houses similar to those in Vienna are located throughout Croatia.

Mineral water

Regarding its water resources, Croatia has a leading position in Europe. Concerning water quality, Croatian water is greatly appreciated all over the world. Due to a lack of established industries there have also been no major incidents of water pollution.
  • Jamnica – Winner of the Paris AquaExpo for best mineral water of 2003
  • Lipički studenac
  • Jana – also belongs to Jamnica, best aromatized mineral water (Eauscar 2004)

Juices and syrups

  • Badel
  • Jamnica
  • Maraska

  • Dona
  • Vindija juices – Vindi sokovi
  • Cedevita

See also

  • Croatian wine

  • Further reading

    • "Hrvatska za stolom – mirisi i okusi Hrvatske", Ivanka BiluÅ¡ et al., Zagreb:Alfa, Koprivnica: Podravka, 1996, 192 p., illustrated in color, (Biblioteka Anima Croatarum, 2)
    • "Hrvatska vina" (Croatian wines), Fazinić Nevenko, Milat Vinko, illustrated, 159 p., 1994,
    • "Nova hrvatska kuhinja" (New Croatian cuisine), Davor Butković, Ana Ugarković, Profil international, Zagreb, 2005, 272 p.,
    • .
      Category:Mediterranean cuisine
      Category:Balkan cuisine

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