Best 12 Local Foods to Try in Rome

You’ve heard it before. One of the best parts of visiting Italy is the food. And this claim is one that I fully support. When I studied abroad in Rome, my dietary horizons were expanded, as a good chunk of my time was spent exploring the seemingly limitless dishes, deserts, and appetizers that the culture has to offer. And as I traveled around Italy outside of Rome, I realized that the different regions had different specialties to offer, expanding my taste in cuisine and my waistline even more. When visiting, there are so many foods to try that it may seem overwhelming to choose, but here are the best 12 local foods to try in Rome.

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1 Suppli.

This fried ball of rice filled with ragù and mozzarella became one of my favorite snacks, and it goes especially well before a meal of pizza.

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2 Fiori di zucca.

Another great appetizer is fiori di zucca, a dish consisting of fried zucchini flowers filled with anchovies and mozzarella.

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3 Carciofi alla giudia.

These Jewish artichokes will melt in your mouth and can be best enjoyed in the Jewish Quarter of Rome.

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4 Baccalà.

Another Roman Jewish specialty is this savory appetizer of fried cod.

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5 Saltimbocca.

This flavorful dish, translates to “jumps in mouth,” and consists of juicy pieces of meat, prosciutto crudo, and sage and is marinated in white wine.

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6 Quinto Quarto.

This general category of cuisine refers to the fifth quarter or the off-cuts and interiors of meat. Some dishes to try that are made with these meat parts include tripa alla Romana, tripe mixed in tomato sauce and pecorino cheese, and coda all vaccinara, a tomato-based stew with oxtail.

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7 Pizza Bianca.

This “white pizza” makes a delicious snack and consists of a light, crispy, and chewy pizza bread topped with salt and sometimes other herbs.

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8 Porchetta.

Savory pork roast filled with herbs is the secret to this dish, and it will have your taste buds bursting with flavor.

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9 Cacio e Pepe.

Simple, yet delicious, this dish is made of noodles stirred with pecorino cheese, pepper, and a touch of pasta water to produce a creamy texture.

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10 Spaghetti alla Carbonara.

This is another simple pasta dish consisting of eggs, pecorino cheese, and guanciale (smoked pork jowl) and topped with some pepper for even more flavor.

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11. Bucatini all’Amatriciana.

Made with a rich tomato sauce and guanciale, this pasta dish is one for the recipe book.

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12. Crostata di Ricotta.

For something sweet, try this tart filled with ricotta and subtle flavors of citrus and Marsala wine.

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Use this list of local Roman foods to make the most of your time in this timeless city. Buon Appetito ~ Kalina Davis

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