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17 Lesser Identified Istanbul Avenue Meals Past Doner Kebab

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Written by our native knowledgeable SJ

Sarah-Jane has lived in Croatia for 10+ years. SJ, as she is thought, has been touring the Balkans & past since 2000. She now shares her ardour for touring along with her husband & youngsters.

Whether or not you’re searching for one thing savory or candy, there’s some road meals in Istanbul for you. Right here is your information to 17 Istanbul road meals choices to sink your enamel into.

Turkey Travel Blog_Beyond Doner Kebabs: 17 Lesser Known Istanbul Street Foods

Istanbul’s bustling streets are well-known for his or her delectable doner kebabs, however there’s a lot extra to discover in relation to road meals on this vibrant metropolis. From savory stuffed mussels to candy sesame-covered simit bread, Istanbul is a haven for foodies trying to uncover lesser-known but equally scrumptious treats.

So be a part of us on a culinary journey as we uncover the best-hidden gems of Istanbul’s road meals scene!


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Introduction To Avenue Meals In Istanbul

Old man selling sweets on the street in Istanbul_Turkey

Istanbul is a metropolis recognized for its road meals. From doner kebabs to Turkish breakfast, there are infinite choices to select from in relation to grabbing a fast chew on the go. However what concerning the lesser-known road meals in Turkey? Those that aren’t as well-liked however are equally as scrumptious?

Listed below are my prime 4 favourite lesser-known road meals in Istanbul:

  1. Midye dolma 
  2. Kokoreç
  3. Ciğ köfte
  4. Balık ekmek

Learn on to seek out out what every of those are. Plus, now we have many extra choices so that you can sink your enamel into.

Greatest Avenue Meals In Istanbul

Istanbul is a meals lover’s paradise, and its road meals scene isn’t any exception. From hearty stews to contemporary seafood, there’s one thing for everybody to take pleasure in. And whereas doner kebabs are undoubtedly the most well-liked road meals dish, there are a lot of different scrumptious choices to select from.

Listed below are among the hottest Istanbul road meals choices:

1. Iskender Kebab

Traditional Turkish Iskender kebab_Bursa Turkey_Depositphotos_244229222_S

This dish is known as after its inventor, Iskender Efendi, and consists of thinly sliced lamb or beef served on pita bread with yogurt and tomato sauce.

2. Simit

Turkish simit bread with Ortakoy Mosque Istalbul - vegan in Istanbul

These are sesame-encrusted bread rings which can be well-liked breakfast objects. They are often eaten plain or full of cheese, jam, or chocolate.

3. Gözleme

Lady making Gozleme in Turkey - Turkish Breakfast

Gözleme is a sort of flatbread that’s historically full of spinach and feta cheese however will also be made with different fillings like floor meat or potatoes. Gözleme is a sort of Turkish flatbread that’s full of numerous toppings like cheese, spinach, potatoes, or meat (often lamb). It’s then cooked on a griddle till crispy and golden brown. You

4. Kumpir

Kumpir is baked potato topped with butter, cheese, mayonnaise, and quite a lot of different elements like corn, olives, pickles, sausage, and greens.

5. Kokoreç

This dish of spiced offal (often lamb intestines) is wrapped in a skinny layer of fats and grilled on a spit. This dish might not look appetizing, however belief us; it’s scrumptious! Kokoreç is a grilled sheep gut that’s usually served wrapped in flatbread. It’s a preferred late-night snack amongst locals and guests alike.

6. Midye Dolma

Turkish Street Food Stuffed Mussels with Lemon - Midye Dolma. High quality photo

Midye dolma is mussels filled with rice and spices and served with lemon juice or tartar sauce. Stuffed mussels are a must-try when in Istanbul. These little bites are flavorful and could be discovered at most road meals distributors.

7. Pide

Sultan palace cafe restaurant_Vladimir pide 2

Pide is much like pizza however often made with floor meat, cheese, herbs, and spices as toppings.

8. Balık Ekme

Balık ekmek - Istanbul street food

Balık ekmek is a fish sandwich served on a contemporary, crusty roll. Usually, it’s made with mackerel or anchovies however also can embrace different varieties of fish.

9. Ciğ Köfte

Ciğ Köfte

One other wonderful fast and engaging snack choice is ciğ köfte, that are fried balls of floor meat (often beef or lamb) combined with bulgur wheat, herbs, and spices. They are often discovered at most köfte stands all through the town.

10. Turkish Delight

Shopping in Istanbul - Turkish Delight - Lokum

This sugary deal with is so well-known; we all know you already know about Turkish delights or lokum. Dates, pistachios, hazelnuts, or walnuts are utilized in premium varieties; conventional varieties are flavored with rosewater, bergamot, orange, or lemon.

11. Roasted Chickpeas

Roasted chickpeas are a scrumptious and wholesome snack choice. They’re excessive in protein and fiber and low in energy. They are often loved plain or flavored along with your favourite spices.

12. Roasted Chestnuts

 Roasted chestnuts in Istanbul, Turkey

There’s one thing concerning the odor of roasted chestnuts that screams wintertime. For many individuals, that is the time of yr after they begin craving consolation meals, and what may very well be extra comforting than a heat, nutty deal with?

Chestnuts have been roasted and eaten as road meals for hundreds of years, and it’s simple to see why. They’re comparatively low cost and straightforward to organize, making a terrific snack on a chilly day. Plus, one thing about consuming them straight from the hearth feels festive.

In case you’ve by no means tried roasted chestnuts earlier than, now’s the time! You may often discover them being offered by road distributors within the colder months. Simply remember to eat them whereas they’re nonetheless sizzling – in any other case, they are often fairly bland.

13. Turkish Ice Cream

Ice cream in Turkey - Istanbul 2

Turkish ice cream is a scrumptious and refreshing deal with that may be loved in Istanbul all yr spherical. Such a ice cream is made with milk, sugar, and starch and infrequently has a thick, creamy consistency.

Probably the greatest locations to take pleasure in Turkish ice cream in Istanbul is at one of many many road carts that may be discovered all through the town. These carts typically have a wide array of flavors to select from, and the ice cream is often served in a cone or cup. It is usually usually flavored with vanilla, chocolate, or pistachio.

One other unbelievable place to savor Turkish ice cream is at one among Istanbul’s many cafes or eating places. Many of those institutions serve conventional Turkish desserts like baklava, which could be loved alongside a scoop or two of ice cream. What higher option to settle down on a sizzling summer season day than by having fun with some scrumptious Turkish ice cream?

14. Macun

Macun is a sort of Turkish sweet that has been round for hundreds of years. It’s made out of sugar, spices, and nuts and has a really candy and intense taste. Macun is usually loved after a meal and is alleged to assist in digestion. It is usually mentioned to have medicinal properties and is usually used as a pure treatment for colds and coughs.

15. Borek

Borek is a scrumptious Turkish pastry that’s well-liked in Istanbul. The dough is made out of phyllo dough and is crammed with meat, cheese, or greens. Borek is often baked, nevertheless it will also be fried.

This pleasant deal with is usually served with a cup of tea or espresso. Borek is a good snack and even as a principal meal in case you wash it down with a glass of aryan. 

Whether or not you’re searching for one thing savory or candy, there’s a road meals dish in Istanbul for everybody to take pleasure in. So the following time you go to Istanbul, ensure to attempt a few of these scrumptious dishes!

16. Corn On The Cob

Corn and chestnut stand_Sultanahmet Istanbul

There’s one thing about corn on the cob that simply screams yummy. And what may very well be extra enjoyable than chowing down on some scrumptious corn whereas strolling by way of the streets of Istanbul? That’s the place the corn on the cob carts are available in. These carts are a fixture in most of the metropolis’s well-liked vacationer areas.

The corn on the cob offered from these carts is usually cooked in a big pot of boiling water proper on the spot. So you possibly can make certain that it’s contemporary and piping sizzling if you buy it.

The ears of corn are then slathered with butter and sprinkled with salt earlier than being wrapped up in paper or foil for straightforward consuming on the go.

17. Watermelon

A street stand in Turkey selling sliced watermelon. Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul is a metropolis filled with surprises, and among the finest surprises is discovering a road vendor promoting watermelon on a sizzling summer season day. These road meals distributors could be discovered throughout the town, and they’re at all times comfortable to supply refreshing slices of watermelon for an affordable worth.

In case you’re searching for a scrumptious and wholesome snack whereas exploring Istanbul, ensure to maintain an eye fixed out for these road distributors!

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Avenue Meals Excursions In Istanbul

Istanbul street food tour

Relating to road meals, Istanbul has lots to supply past doner kebabs. If you wish to discover among the metropolis’s lesser-known (however equally scrumptious) road meals, take into account signing up for one of many many obtainable Istanbul meals excursions.

On a meals tour of Istanbul, you’ll have the chance to attempt numerous Turkish dishes, all of that are usually fairly inexpensive. You’ll additionally get to study concerning the historical past and tradition behind a few of Istanbul’s hottest road meals – from either side of the continent. Asia and Europe. 

A few of the dishes you may encounter on a road meals tour embrace kokoreç (a grilled lamb gut sandwich), balık ekmek (fish sandwiches), gözleme (savory pancakes), and börek (flaky pastries full of meat or cheese). After all, no road meals tour could be full with out attempting at the least one doner kebab!

Whether or not you’re an area or a vacationer, a road meals tour is an effective way to pattern a few of Istanbul’s best-kept culinary secrets and techniques.

Suggestions for Consuming Istanbul Avenue Meals Safely

Tea maker from street cafe calling

Relating to road meals, Istanbul has lots to supply. From doner kebabs to Turkish pizzas, there are many scrumptious choices to select from. However in case you’re not cautious, road meals will also be a supply of meals poisoning.

Listed below are some suggestions for consuming road meals safely:

  • Be sure that the meals is cooked contemporary or saved cool/heat. If it’s been sitting out for some time, it’s finest to keep away from it
  • Examine to see if the seller makes use of clear utensils and cooking surfaces.
  • Keep away from something that appears prefer it may need been tampered with or is in poor situation.
  • Wash your arms earlier than and after consuming (or get out that hand sanitizer) to keep away from any tummy troubles


Is it onerous to seek out well-known road meals in Istanbul?

Nope. Roasted chestnuts, ice cream, and grilled corn could be discovered throughout and are simple to seek out. Kebabs, borek, simit, and fish sandwiches are dotted concerning the metropolis.

Is there an Istanbul road meals market?

Sadly no. But it surely ought to! However we recommend you go to Spice Market in case you love meals.

Are Istanbul road meals costly?

No method! So low cost. Cheaper than a Mcdonalds’ meal and method tastier. 

How do I discover the very best road meals locations in Istanbul?

Ask your lodge or host for his or her suggestions, however actually, as you wander the streets, you’ll discover so many to select from by yourself. 

What are the very best Istanbul road meals costs?

You will get issues for as little as 1 euro!

The place to eat road meals in Istanbul?

Throughout. There are carts, retailers, and stalls on each nook. Properly, nearly. 


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