Are you dreaming of savoring the most authentic Italian dishes in the land of their origin?
Rome, the heart of Italy, is the perfect place for a gastronomic adventure. Here you can enjoy the classic comfort food of the Roman tradition, taking a journey back in time as you discover the unique flavors of this traditional cuisine.
Every dish has its own unique aroma and taste, so you’ll have plenty of choices when it comes to discovering classic Italian dishes in Rome.
From pasta dishes such as cacio e pepe and lasagna to succulent meats like agnello con finocchio and coda alla vaccinara, your taste buds will never get bored.
So what are the traditional Italian dishes you simply cannot miss when in Rome? Read on for a delicious guide to some of the most authentic dishes in Rome.
1. Cacio e pepe
One of our favorite dishes in Rome: an iconic Italian dish that has been a staple of Roman cuisine for centuries.
The dish is made with just three ingredients: pasta, cheese, and pepper. The pasta is usually bucatini, which is a thick spaghetti-style noodle. The cheese used is usually a mix of pecorino and parmigiano, with pecorino being the predominant ingredient. A generous amount of freshly cracked black pepper is added to the pasta.
The dish is typically cooked in a pan and served with a spoon. To start, you’ll need to heat some butter or olive oil in a pan. Then add the bucatini, salt, and pepper to the pan. Next, begin to stir with a wooden spoon, adding some of the cheese as you stir. Once the cheese is melted, add a ladle of the cooking water and continue to stir the pasta until the sauce thickens.
Cacio e pepe is served with a sprinkle of extra cheese, cracked pepper, and some chopped fresh parsley. The dish is an easy and satisfying Roman favorite, perfect for a quick dinner during summer evenings or as part of a larger, multi-course Italian meal.
So if you’re looking to try a delicious and traditional Italian dishes in Rome, give cacio e pepe a try. It’s a classic dish that’s sure to keep you coming back for more.
2. Carciofi Alla Giudia
Carciofi alla giudia, or Jewish-style artichokes, is a traditional Roman dish that has been enjoyed for centuries.
The dish is made by deep-frying whole artichokes until they are crispy and golden brown. The outer leaves become crunchy, while the inner leaves and heart become tender and flavorful. The artichokes are seasoned with salt and pepper and served hot, often with a squeeze of lemon juice.
Carciofi alla giudia is one the most popular appetizer dishes in Rome, especially in the Jewish quarter, where it originated. It is a delicious and unique way to enjoy artichokes, and a must-try for any food lover visiting the city.
Suppli, also known as supplì al telefono, are a beloved Roman street food that consists of deep-fried rice croquettes stuffed with a gooey center of mozzarella cheese.
The name “al telefono” comes from the way the melted cheese strings out when you bite into it, resembling a telephone cord.
The crispy exterior of the croquette gives way to a flavorful mix of rice, tomato sauce, and meat, making it a perfect snack or appetizer. Suppli can be found all over Rome, from food trucks to local pizzerias, and are a must-try for any foodie visiting the city.
Check our full article about suppli!
4. Spaghetti Carbonara
This pasta is one of the most popular dishes in Rome as well.
It is a simple and classic Italian pasta dish, made with spaghetti, guanciale, eggs and parmesan cheese. It is a hearty and delicious dish that is easy to find in many restaurants in Rome.
The dish is typically served with garlic bread and a glass of red wine, making it the perfect meal for a traditional Italian dining experience.
For those looking to taste some of the local delicacies of Rome, spaghetti carbonara is a must-try dish.
Here’s our personal recipe for spaghetti carbonara!
5. Rigatoni alla Amatriciana
This is an iconic dish that is traditionally found in Rome.
This delicious pasta dish includes a tomato sauce, guanciale, onions, and plenty of cheese. It is a perfectly balanced pasta dish that is hearty and flavorful.
This popular dish can be found in most restaurants around Rome and is a favorite among those looking for a taste of Rome’s traditional dishes.
Rigatoni alla amatriciana is sure to be a hit with any diner and is a must-try for those visiting the city.
6. Polenta con Gamberi
Another one of our most favorite dishes in Rome.
This dish is made by combining shrimp and polenta, a type of cornmeal. It is cooked and served as a stew, which can vary from a thick, creamy texture to a more runny consistency.
This dish is typically served with garlic and olive oil, and can even be topped with grated cheese or a dollop of sour cream for added richness. It is one of the most beloved dishes in Rome, and can be found in most traditional Italian restaurants throughout the city.
Its unique combination of shrimp, polenta, herbs and cheese make it a must-try dish for anyone looking to experience true traditional Italian dishes in Rome.
7. Saltimbocca alla Romana
This is a popular Roman dish that is sure to delight any visitor to the city.
Originating in the 19th century, this dish consists of veal layered with prosciutto and sage, traditionally cooked in white wine, butter, and stock.
It is often served with vegetables and risotto, making it a complete and delicious meal. When dining in Rome, trying this classic Italian dish is a must.
Saltimbocca alla Romana is a delicious example of traditional dishes in Rome, and a great way to experience the flavors of Italian cuisine.
8. Agnello con Finocchio
This meaty dish of lamb with fennel is a classic in Rome.
It blends the flavors of the herbs, garlic, and of course, the fennel to give it an earthy flavor. To prepare the lamb, it is typically marinated and then grilled, while the fennel is sautéed in olive oil, garlic and parsley.
The combination of these two ingredients creates a flavorful and comforting dish that is a staple of traditional Italian dishes in Rome.
9. Gnocchi alla Romana
This is one of the most popular traditional dishes in Rome.
This simple but delicious dish consists of potato dumplings that are boiled and served with a simple tomato sauce. It’s a indulgent comfort food that is often served as a first course.
The origins of gnocchi alla Romana are rooted in the Roman Empire. It was first served in the 19th century, with the dumplings made using flour, semolina, and butter. These ingredients were combined with cheese, eggs, and plenty of chopped herbs. Potatoes are the key component of the dish, giving it an unmistakeable flavour.
The gnocchi is usually cooked in a shallow pan with a layer of butter and a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese. The sauce is usually made with fresh tomatoes, garlic, and herbs, and served with extra Parmesan cheese to top.
Gnocchi alla Romana is popular among locals and tourists alike. It’s a great dish to share with friends and family, and it’s sure to be a hit with anyone who enjoys Italian cuisine. A must-try when visiting Rome and is sure to provide a memorable dining experience.
Last but not least.
Tiramisù is one of the most beloved Italian desserts, and it is quite popular among the traditional dishes in Rome. It is a layered dessert made with ladyfingers, espresso, and sweet cream. The traditional recipe calls for egg yolks and mascarpone, though variations of the classic recipe can include other types of cheeses and alcohol.
Tiramisù is traditionally served chilled, which makes it a perfect summer dessert. This decadent dessert is now prepared in a variety of ways all over the world, but it still remains a classic favorite in Rome.
The history of tiramisù began in the 1970s in the Veneto region of Italy. According to some sources, the name of the dish is derived from the phrase “tira mi su,” which means “lift me up” in Italian. The story is that a cook created the dessert in an effort to lift the spirits of a local restaurant patron.
Tiramisù is enjoyed by both locals and tourists in Rome, and it is often served as the dessert course in traditional Italian meals. Tiramisù is typically the centerpiece of any Roman table, and it’s a sweet way to end a delicious meal.
However you prefer your tiramisù, this classic dessert remains one of the most beloved dishes in Rome today.
Rome is a food paradise where authentic Italian dishes can be found in abundance.
Traditional Roman dishes are some of the most delicious and fragrant in Italy, with locally grown, high-quality ingredients that give an amazing depth to their flavors.
From the rich and creamy pasta dishes like carbonara and amatriciana, to the traditional meat and seafood meals such as lamb with fennel and saltimbocca alla Romana, to the sweet and creamy tiramisu and coda alla vaccinara, Rome’s traditional Italian cuisine has something to offer everyone.
Exploring traditional dishes in Rome is an adventure in itself, and an opportunity to sample some of the finest and most delicious Italian cooking in the world.
So, make sure to have a seat, grab a fork and a glass of wine and come explore the delicious traditional Italian dishes in Rome.