The UK tends to get a lot of negativity when it comes to food and I think it’s time to change that. Sure, most people probably won’t find British food particularly fun or innovative and it may not be as popular as Japanese food, but that’s not a good reason to simply dismiss it. There are tons of cool dishes unique to the UK that you absolutely have to try at least once in your life. Here’s a list of 15 British foods that every foreigner should try out – trust me, you don’t know what you’ve been missing!
1. Scotch Eggs
This is definitely one of my favourite British foods. A scotch egg consists of a hard-boiled egg (often slightly runny) that’s been wrapped in sausage meat and coated in breadcrumbs. It is either baked or deep-friend, and you can consume it hold or cold – it’s the perfect picnic snack.
2. Black Pudding
Another Scottish food item, black pudding is not always to everyone’s liking but it’s still worth a try. It is a type of blood sausage made with oatmeal or groats. It’s commonly used as part of a full Scottish breakfast, which is a slight variant of the English version.
3. Eton Mess
Originating in (you guessed it) Eton, this popular British desert is definitely one that you’re going to love. Usually made with only three ingredients – strawberry, whipped double cream, and bits of meringue – this simple desert will make a great conclusion to any meal.
I’m sure you’ve all heard of shortbread before because it’s absolutely delicious! This Scottish biscuit is baked using white sugar, oat flour, and butter, which makes it one of the best things to have with your tea. You have to try it if you haven’t already; trust me, you’ll thank me later.
5. Apple Crumble
You have to admit that if Britain got anything right, then it’s their desserts. One of their most popular sweet treats is the apple crumble, which is made out of delicious baked apple slices covered in streusel crust. You could also add other ingredients to the mix if you’re feeling adventurous – a possible variant is apple and rhubarb.
6. Beef Wellington
Definitely the most gourmet dish on this list, beef Wellington is more than a food item – it’s art. It is believed that this dish was named after the Duke of Wellington, who loved to eat beef fillet coated in mushrooms, truffles, and then cooked inside puff pastry. It remains one of Britain’s greatest dishes to this day.
7. Sunday Roast
As the name suggests, this meal is typically served on a Sunday and incorporates a cozy get together with the family. It consists of roasted meat (typically beef or chicken), roast potatoes, Yorkshire pudding, stuffing, vegetables, and gravy. A delicious collection of incredible flavours, the Sunday roast is definitely one to try next time you’re in the UK.
8. Fry Up or Full English (Breakfast)
Before you say anything – yes, a fry up is a legitimate dish, and it’s easily one of the best breakfasts that you could ever have. A typical list of ingredients would include pork sausages, bacon, eggs, beans, fried or grilled mushrooms and tomatoes, and some toast. What could possibly be a better breakfast than this!
9. Shepherd’s Pie
British pies have always been delicious and shepherd’s pie is no exception. A flavourful combination of minced lamb meat, vegetables (such as peas and sliced carrots), and mashed potato, this baked goodness will make an incredible hearty dinner that will be especially fitting during the colder months of the year.
10. Steak and Ale Pie
As mentioned above, there are tons of delicious pies to try out in the UK, but the steak and ale variant is one of my personal favourites. Commonly served in pubs, this puff pastry pie is generously filled with sliced steak and ale, and accompanied by a side of vegetables and/or potatoes.
11. Gammon and Egg
Another dish commonly served in British pubs, gammon and egg is pretty much self-explanatory – it’s a slice of gammon (a type of cured pork) topped with a fried egg. The saltiness of the meat is nicely offset by the egg, which gives this food its unique flavour. It is commonly served with a side of vegetables and baked potatoes.
12. Bubble and Squeak
When I first heard of this, I refused to believe that it was an actual name for a dish. Turns out, it’s very real and it’s a traditional way of preparing leftovers. It is commonly served in the morning and consists of boiled potatoes and cabbage. It was named after the sounds that the ingredients make when they’re cooking in the pan.
13. Victoria Sponge
Named after Queen Victoria, this delicious British dessert is definitely something that you should try. Also known as the Victoria sandwich, this dish is made using two slices of sponge with raspberry jam and whipped double cream in between them. The delicious sponge is perfectly completed by the sweet filling, making this one of the best British desserts in existence.
14. Christmas Pudding
Commonly eaten as part of a Christmas dinner, the Christmas pudding is either something you’ll love or hate. Made with sugar, treacle, and spices, it can be served warm or cold. It definitely has an acquired taste but it’s still worth trying if you happen to be in the UK during winter.
15. Golden Syrup Cake
This sweet treat is definitely something that every foreigner in the UK should try. Moist and rich, the golden syrup cake is filled with delicious light treacle that gives it an incredible flavour. It also tends to keep for quite some time so you’ll be able to enjoy it for longer.