Food is an essential part of human life and comes in different forms, tastes and cultures. With so many varieties of food available worldwide, it can be challenging to determine what the world’s best food is. However, there are some dishes that stand out and are considered the best in the world.
Understanding the world’s best food
When it comes to the world’s best food, there is no definitive answer. Food preferences are subjective, and another might disagree with what one person considers the best. However, some common factors make certain dishes stand out. These factors include taste, presentation, nutrition, novelty, cultural significance and accessibility.
According to CNN Travel, some of the world’s 50 best foods include chocolate from Mexico,
Similarly, Far & Wide’s ranking of the 75 best foods in the world includes dishes like Pad Thai from Thailand, croissants from France and tacos from Mexico.
While taste is subjective, some foods are appreciated for their nutritional value. BBC Future’s list of the world’s most nutritious foods includes sweet potatoes, rich in beta-carotene and kale, packed with vitamins and minerals. These foods not only taste good but also provide essential nutrients that are crucial for a healthy lifestyle.
Overall, the world’s best food is a subjective topic open to interpretation. However, one thing remains: Good food is good food.
Prized ingredients from across the globe
When it comes to sourcing the finest ingredients from around the globe, both in terms of flavor and cost, here are a few cherished favorites that elevate the culinary creations of some of the world’s top cuisines.
- Saffron: A spice derived from the crocus flower, saffron is known for its distinct flavor and aroma. It is also one of the most expensive spices in the world due to the labor-intensive process of harvesting the delicate threads.
- Truffles: These underground fungi are prized for their intense, earthy flavor and aroma. They can be found in various dishes, from pasta to omelets, and are often shaved or grated over the top for added flavor.
- Wagyu beef: This premium beef comes from a specific breed of cattle raised in Japan. It is known for its high levels of marbling, which results in a tender, juicy texture and rich flavor.
- Caviar: The eggs of the sturgeon fish, caviar is a delicacy prized for its briny, salty flavor and delicate texture. It often serves as a garnish or topping for dishes like sushi or blinis.
- Vanilla: A popular flavoring agent used in everything from baked goods to ice cream, vanilla is derived from the seed pods of the
vanillaorchid. It has a sweet, floral flavor and aroma highly prized in the culinary world.
- Lobster: A type of shellfish prized for its sweet, succulent meat. Lobster is often served boiled or steamed and is a popular ingredient in dishes like lobster bisque and lobster rolls.
- Morel mushrooms: These wild mushrooms have a unique, nutty flavor and are prized by chefs for their meaty texture and versatility. They are often used in dishes like risotto and omelets.
“The best food in the world for me is Armenian lahmajoun. Other countries have their own ways of making lahmajoun — there is Persian, Arabic, etc. But I feel none of them beat the Armenian one with its flavor. I know I’m biased as I’m Armenian but I did try so many in different restaurants in the U.S. and still can’t find the one for me. Unfortunately, there is no Armenian restaurant in San Francisco Bay Area where I live, so I get to eat my favorite Armenian lahmajoun only when I travel back to Armenia.”— Tamara, Thriving In Parenting
Iconic dishes around the world
When it comes to iconic dishes around the world, there are a few that stand out above the rest. Here are some of the most iconic dishes from around the world.
A staple in Indonesian cuisine, Nasi Goreng is a fried rice dish that is typically made with shrimp, chicken, and vegetables. It is seasoned with sweet soy sauce, sambal oelek and garlic, giving it a sweet and spicy flavor.
Pizza is a universally loved dish originating in Italy and with countless variations, toppings and styles. Whether you prefer a classic Margherita or loaded meat lovers, there is a
A traditional Spanish dish, paella is a rice dish typically made with saffron, chicken and seafood. It is a flavorful and filling dish for sharing with friends and family.
Originating in Japan, ramen has become a trendy dish worldwide. It is a noodle soup dish typically made with a meat or vegetable broth, topped with meat, vegetables and egg.
This Mexican dish has become a staple in many countries around the globe. Tacos can be made with a variety of fillings, such as beef, chicken, fish or vegetables, and are typically topped with guacamole, salsa and sour cream.
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A French pastry known worldwide, croissants are a buttery and flaky pastry that is perfect for breakfast or a snack. They can be filled with chocolate, cheese or ham and are typically served with coffee or tea.
Peking duck is a traditional Chinese roasted duck dish served with pancakes, scallions and hoisin sauce. It is an indulgent dish that is perfect for special occasions.
A Vietnamese noodle soup dish, pho, is a comforting dish perfect for cold days. It is typically made with beef or chicken broth, rice noodles and topped with meat, vegetables and herbs.
A popular Indian dish, biryani is a rice dish that is typically made with spices, meat and vegetables. It is a filling dish that is delicious served alongside other Indian staples.
Fish and chips
A British dish that has become a worldwide favorite, fish and chips is made with battered and fried fish, served with crispy french fries and brown gravy. It is a comforting dish that is perfect for a casual meal.
A Japanese dish that has become a worldwide favorite, sushi is a dish made with vinegared rice, fish and vegetables. It can be served as maki rolls, nigiri or hand rolls and is typically eaten with soy sauce and wasabi.
A traditional Indonesian dish, gado gado is a salad made with vegetables, tofu and tempeh, topped with peanut sauce. It is a healthy dish perfect for a light lunch.
A popular Latin American dish, empanadas are a pastry filled with meat, vegetables or cheese. They are typically baked or fried and make a delicious portable snack or meal.
A Louisiana Creole dish, jambalaya is a rice dish that is made with meat, vegetables and spices. It is a flavorful and filling dish that is perfect for large gatherings.
This Canadian dish has french fries, cheese curds and brown gravy. It is an indulgent dish perfect for a late-night snack.
An Italian dessert, tiramisu is a layered dessert made with ladyfingers, mascarpone cheese and espresso. It is a decadent dessert perfect for special occasions.
Pierogies are Polish dumplings filled with meat, potatoes or cheese. They are typically boiled or fried and are a delicious and hearty meal.
Ceviche is a Latin American seafood dish with raw fish, lime juice and vegetables. It is a refreshing dish perfect for a light lunch or dinner.
“Tacos are hands down one of the best foods in the world. Why? Because no one can eat a taco and be sad. But also, on a more serious note, the taco is a perfect street food, something that every working family has enjoyed with a variety of humble fillings and toppings, as simple as ground beef or slow-cooked shredded meat to as fancy as you want them. It’s a food that works as a vessel for regional flavors, local cuisines and generations of comfort.”— Kita Roberts, Girl Carnivore, taco connoisseur
World’s best restaurants
Countless restaurants have earned critical acclaim and a loyal following from food lovers worldwide.
One of the most highly regarded restaurants in the world is Central, located in Lima, Peru. This restaurant is known for its innovative approach to Peruvian cuisine, using indigenous ingredients and techniques to create delicious and visually stunning dishes.
Another popular destination is Disfrutar in Barcelona, Spain, which has been recognized as one of the best restaurants in the world for its playful and inventive cuisine.
Asia boasts several restaurants that have gained international recognition, including Gaggan Anand’s Bangkok-based restaurant, Gaggan, which has been named the best restaurant in Asia multiple times.
There is no shortage of exceptional restaurants in Europe for those looking for a more traditional dining experience. Lido 84 in Italy, for example, is known for its rustic, farm-to-table cuisine. At the same time, Noma in Copenhagen, Denmark, has gained international acclaim for its innovative use of Nordic ingredients and techniques.
No matter what type of cuisine or dining experience you’re looking for, there are countless restaurants around the world that offer exceptional food, impeccable service, and an unforgettable dining experience.
The world is full of diverse and delicious cuisines that are worth exploring. From the delicate flavors of sushi and sashimi in Japan to the bold and vibrant flavors of Spanish tapas, there is something to delight a food lover on every corner of the globe.
It is important to remember that food is not just about taste but also about culture and tradition. Many dishes have a long history and have been passed down through generations, making them an essential part of a country’s heritage. When traveling, it is worth exploring local cuisine and learning about the stories behind the dishes.
Overall, the world’s best food is subjective and varies from person to person. However, one thing is certain: There is no shortage of delicious food to discover and enjoy.
Kristen Wood is a photographer, writer and creator of MOON and spoon and yum and Foodventures Abroad. She is also the author of Vegetarian Family Cookbook, Fermented Hot Sauce Cookbook, and Hot Sauce Cookbook for Beginners. Her work has been featured in various online and print publications, including Elle, Martha Stewart, Yoga Journal and more.