My friends and I went to Amsterdam this weekend, and although I didn’t expect it at all, Amsterdam had a really incredible food scene! Seriously, everywhere we walked, we could not stop freaking out about how cute, trendy, and delicious all of the restaurants and cafes were. Come along with me on my food journey through Amsterdam!
1. Albert Cuypstraat Market
We started off our food adventure at the outdoor Albert Cuypstraat Market, a long street with stalls of food, clothing, and souvenirs. We wanted our first food to be the famous Amsterdam stroopwafels, a freshly made thin waffle, split in half and filled with syrup (the traditional filling), nutella, or both. So delicious! I also got a beet, apple, ginger, and cayenne pepper fruit juice to sip, and later we ate a kind of Middle Eastern flat bread wrap with cheese, spinach, and potato.
2. Chipsy King
Although you wouldn’t think it, another famous Amsterdam food is potato fries, cut thick and topped with different sauces. We stopped at Chipsy King and shared a delectable cone of fries layered with cheese sauce and mayonnaise.
3. Bulls & Dogs
For dinner we ate at a restaurant called Bulls & Dogs, which has many locations throughout the city. They specialize in hot dogs, but these aren’t your normal hot dogs! They have unique combinations like “The Coney Island Chicken Dog” with a chicken sausage, pickles, and crispy onion chips; “The Smokey Pepper Dog” with lamb sausage, harissa sauce, and arugula, and “The It’s Not a Dog,” a vegetarian dog with soy beans, hummus, and popcorn. All of the dogs are served in a unique pretzel bun. They are also known for their incredible milkshakes, served in a class jar and piled high with whipped cream and toppings. I couldn’t get enough of stroopwafels, so I got the “Dutch Cookie Wookie” shake. We also got more cheesy fries and super thin sliced onion rings.
4. Pancakes Amsterdam
For brunch on the second day, we went to Pancakes Amsterdam, another Amsterdam chain. You can choose between Dutch pancakes, which are thin and fill up the size of a whole dinner plate, or a stack of American pancakes. Both are equally decorated with tons of toppings, including sweet and savory. We had to go for the Dutch pancakes of course, and my friend and I split a savory with Camembert cheese, chicory, ham, and raspberry sauce, as well as a sweet with apple crumble, ice cream, and cinnamon. They were both incredible, and I was glad to be able to try both the sweet and savory.
An unexpected food experience, but at night we went to a comedy show at a cultural center called Mezrab. It started as an Iranian storytelling and song house, before outgrowing several venues to become what it is today. It seems they still stick to their Iranian roots because in the back of the comedy show was an old woman serving soups out of two giant cooking pots. She spoke absolutely no English, but we decided to go for it and try both of the soups. One was a green soup with beans, maybe spinach, and topped with crunchy onion bits. The other was red with lentils and cream on top. They were really warm and comforting, and I was glad to get a unique cultural experience.
We got out of the comedy show super late, and the only open place we could find around us was a low-scale food place called Corner Inn that served doner kebab, felafel, burgers, and other fried foods. I decided to forgo the Mediterranean cuisine and instead get bitterballen, a traditional Dutch beef and gravy croquette. It was hot and crispy, and the inside was a smooth paste almost like mashed potatoes. I’m not sure if the one I got at Corner Inn was exactly the traditional filling, but it was still delicious!
7. Coffee and Coconuts
For breakfast on our final day, we went to the cutest and trendiest breakfast place called Coffee & Coconuts. This place really looked like it could belong somewhere like New York or San Francisco. The interior looks like it was a repurposed warehouse, and there are three different floors with lofty ceilings, cosy furniture, and tropical decor. I really wanted the full coconut experience, so I ordered a coconut milk cold coffee and the “CT breakfast,” a combo with a blueberry and coconut pancake, toast with mashed avocado, scramble eggs, and cheese, a yogurt parfait with granola and dried coconut shavings. The pancake was a touch dry and I wish they included more than one on the plate, but it offered a great variety and experience.
8. Warung Swietie
Amsterdam is an incredibly international city, hosting an wide range of different cuisines. Two international cuisines that Amsterdam is particularly known for are Indoneasian and Surinamese. And although I previously didn’t even know Suriname was a country, for my final meal I decided to round out my Amsterdam experience at a hole-in-the-wall Surinamese Restaurant called Warung Swietie. Based on yelp recommendations, I ordered “Pom”, a kind of sweetish stew or paste made of the pom-tayer root, with bits of chicken and served with rice, green beans, and cabbage. On the side I got “sambal soup,” a flavorful chicken broth with shredded chicken and beansprouts, and “dawet” a lemon-grass infused sweet pink drink with some tiny jello pieces. It wasn’t the most gourmet experience, but the food was quite delicious and cool to try.
Thank you for following along my Amsterdam food journey with me! I hope I enlightened you about Amsterdam’s amazing food scene and some traditional Dutch foods.