It’s no secret that Italy is famous for its mouthwatering cuisine. From the north to the south, there’s so much diversity in Italian food that it can be hard to know where to start when exploring this beautiful country.
One of the best ways to get a taste of Italy is by visiting its regions and trying the local cuisine. We’ve put together a handy guide to Italy’s cuisine by all 20 regions.
If you’re planning to visit Italy in 2023, you might need to get the new ETIAS authorization. Once you’ve got that sorted, you can grab this guide and get started on your Italian food tour.
Val d’Aosta cuisine is a unique blend of French, German and Italian influences.
The most famous dish from this region is civet de sanglier (wild boar stew), which is traditionally served with polenta. You’ll also find dishes such as fonduta (cheese fondue), salade tressée (braided salad) and pâté chaud aux pistaches (hot nut paste).
Liguria is a small region in northwest Italy, and its cuisine is very much tied to the land. The area is known for its seafood, especially oysters, mussels, and squid and for its warm weather vegetables like artichokes and tomatoes.
Ligurians love their olive oil — which they use to dress up everything from salads to soups. The region is also famous for its pesto.
The most famous dish from the Lombardia region is risotto alla milanese, a rice dish with saffron and butter. It’s often served with chicken, veal, or fish as a main course.
Lombardia is also famous for its panettone — a sweet bread that you might think of as Italian fruitcake, which is now eaten all over Italy.
Trentino Alto Adige
In Trentino Alto Adige, the cuisine is simple and rustic. It’s based on local ingredients like milk, cheese, potatoes, apples, and chestnuts. The region is famous for its pork dishes.
The region’s culture is deeply rooted in the Alps, and the cuisine reflects that with its focus on fresh ingredients and simple preparation.
Emilia Romagna is a region in northern Italy that is famous for its rich and diverse cuisine.
The region is known for producing olive oil and parma ham. It also has a number of dishes that are unique to the region, such as tortellini, lasagna bolognese, and radicchio salad.
Tuscany’s cuisine is rich in the best of Italian traditions. The region is known for its fresh ingredients, which include olive oil, tomatoes, garlic, and basil. Tuscany also has a strong tradition of home-cooking and slow food — so you can expect a lot of comfort food here, including bread soup and ragù.
Lazio is the region that encompasses Rome, so it’s no surprise that Lazio cuisine is centred around the city. The region’s food is rustic and hearty, with lots of meat and dairy products.
While there are many dishes that are considered Lazio cuisine, some of the most popular include carbonara pasta, cacio e pepe pasta, and suppli (fried rice balls).
The Marche region of Italy is known for its unique cuisine. The region is known for its rich agricultural production, and many of the dishes are made from products grown in the area. Here you’ll find dishes like ciauscolo (spreadable salami), and crema fritta (fried custard).
The Molise region is known for its cuisine, which is largely influenced by the local ingredients that can be found there.
Molise is known for its gastronomy, with many restaurants offering traditional dishes such as pasta with wild boar sauce, stuffed aubergine and artichokes, and grilled lamb chops.
It’s known for its rich use of herbs and spices, especially oregano, which grows wild in the region. The cuisine is also influenced by the region’s proximity to the sea, with dishes featuring fish, shellfish, and crustaceans.
Calabrian cuisine is a delicious blend of Mediterranean and Italian flavours. The region’s cuisine is well known for its pasta dishes, especially lasagna and baked ziti, as well as its meat dishes and stews.
The Sicilian cuisine is characterized by a wide variety of dishes, all of which are prepared with fresh, seasonal ingredients. Popular dishes in Sicily that you must try are cannoli, fish couscous, and its locally grown nuts.