Florence is known as one of the most romantic cities in Italy, and maybe in the entire world but it’s not just the architecture, history, or art that brings a romantic spark, the traditional food in Florence is quite amazing too.
The traditional food in Florence isn’t just about your regular Italian food, it comes down to the quality of the ingredients from the region, Tuscany. Tuscany is famous for its beef, hare, wild boar, truffles, tomatoes, and mushrooms. Any dish you see in Florence that includes any of these is likely to blow your taste buds away.
Now collating a list of the best traditional food in Florence isn’t easy as there is so much to choose from but we have managed to whittle the options down to what we think are the best.
Pappardelle al Cinghiale translated is ribbon pasta with wild boar. This dish isn’t available all year round as wild boar hunting season only runs from September to February so if you’re in Florence during these months, you have to try some Pappardelle al Cinghiale.
Being wild, the wild boar meat is 100% organic and full of flavor. The wild board is first dry-aged and then marinated overnight in a wine sauce before being cooked the next day. It’s a mouthwateringly flavorful and tender plus when combined with perfectly cooked Pappardelle pasta, it’s one of the best traditional pasta dishes you can have while in Florence.
Ribollita is the first traditional veggie food in Florence featured and is a great one for any vegetarians out there.
Ribollita literally means reheated vegetable soup and is a kind of stew/soup that is full of authenticity and deep flavors. Traditionally, Ribollita is made with whatever vegetable is available at the time as it’s a kind of “poor cooking” or cocina povera that the less affluent locals used to make it through hard times, but has become a popular traditional food in Florence for all.
It’s usually made from healthy green vegetables, beans, and a delicious tomato sauce and served with fresh rustic bread. It’s a very warming and homey dish and something you must try, especially in winter.
Every Ribollita is different as it depends on what the chef has available, so be sure to try it more than once at different restaurants for a different taste each time.
Bistecca Alla Fiorentina, Florentine Beefsteak in English, might be one of the best T-bone steaks you will ever try and is a very traditional food in Florence.
What makes the T-bone steak so delicious is the quality of the beef. It comes from an ancient breed of cattle from Tuscany known as Chianina which gives the meat an incredibly deep and delicious flavor.
Because the Bistecca Alla Fiorentina is already so full of flavor, it doesn’t require any marinating or much seasoning to make it taste amazing. Just a dash of salt and pepper is all that it takes and then the T-bone is grilled quickly on all 4 sides to seal in the flavor.
Traditionally Bistecca Alla Fiorentina is shared and it’s a wonderful starter to have with your meal or while drinking some fine red wine. Also, eating the entire T-bone on your own is quite a task due to its large size.
Bistecca Alla Fiorentina is served perfectly caramelized on the outside and tender and rare on the inside. You have to try it while you’re in Florence, the taste might make you fall off your chair.
Another traditional food in Florence is Tagliatelle Funghi Porcini e Tartufo and it’s another great one for all your veggies out there.
Tagliatelle Funghi Porcini e Tartufo is a pasta dish served with truffle and porcini mushrooms that are found locally around the region. You’ll find this dish at pretty much every single restaurant in Florence and it might even be their city’s favorite meal.
Tagliatelle Funghi Porcini e Tartufo is very hard to make taste amazing. It’s an incredibly simple meal and ensuring each part of it is cooked to perfection is the key to ensuring a good balance of flavor. The pasta should be handmade, cooked aldente, and the mushrooms perfectly cooked so they are not soggy nor over crispy.
Each restaurant has their own spin on Tagliatelle Funghi Porcini e Tartufo. They might include different sauces or vegetables to add some texture or depth of flavors to the dish.
Lampredotto is one of the most traditional street foods in Florence and if you’re hankering for a delicious sandwich while wandering around the beautiful streets of Florence, Lampredotto is the one to try.
Lampredotto is a beef tripe sandwich and is made from the stomach of a cow, specifically the fourth stomach, not the first, second, on third. Now, knowing that it’s made from a cow’s stomach might put you off but try to stay strong because you have to try this sandwich.
Lampredotto is a very affordable meal in Florence and was once the traditional food of the working class of Florence. It’s made by stewing the beef tripe with vegetables, salt, and pepper for about an hour until it’s tender. The tripe is then cut into small pieces while still warm and served in a fresh bread bun with delicious salsa.
You’ll find Lampredotto being served by almost all the street vendors in Florence and to find the best Lampredotto, look for long cues of locals, as they know which street vendor has the best game.
Coccoli Prosciutto e Stracchino is probably one of my favorite traditional food in Florence simply due to its decadence. It merges a wonderful array of tastes and textures that I just love.
Coccoli Prosciutto e Stracchino is fried bread topped off and/or stuffed with prosciutto and stracchino cheese. Just writing about Coccoli Prosciutto e Stracchino is making my mouth water and it’s actually quite simple to make at home if you know how to make bread.
You’ll have to start out by making some dough and splitting it into small balls around the size of an almond. After that, it’s time to fry the bread balls to perfection, just them in half while they are still warm, and stuff them with both prosciutto and stracchino cheese.
Coccoli Prosciutto e Stracchino is not an old dish in Florence and it started out as street food that locals would snack on while wandering around town but quickly became very popular.
Anna is the co-owner of expert world travel and can't wait to share her travel experience with the world. With over 54 countries under her belt she has a lot to write about! Including those insane encounters with black bears in Canada.