Discover the main dishes of Belgium

Discover the main dishes of Belgium

Are you curious about the rich culinary traditions of Belgium? Look no further! In this article, we will take you on a gastronomic journey to explore the main dishes that make Belgian cuisine so unique and delicious. From the famous moules-frites (mussels and fries) to the hearty carbonnade flamande (Flemish beef stew), Belgium offers a wide variety of mouthwatering delicacies that will satisfy even the most discerning taste buds. Join us as we delve into the flavors, ingredients, and cultural significance behind these iconic Belgian dishes.

Traditional Belgian Dishes


One of the most iconic dishes in Belgium is Moules-frites. This delicious dish consists of mussels cooked in a flavorful broth and served with a side of crispy fries. Belgians take great pride in their mussels, which are typically harvested in the North Sea. The mussels are cooked with aromatic vegetables, such as onions, celery, and garlic, and seasoned with herbs like parsley and thyme. The result is a mouthwatering combination of tender mussels and perfectly golden fries.

Carbonade Flamande

Carbonade Flamande is a hearty beef stew that is a true Belgian classic. This dish showcases the rich flavors of Belgian beer and tender beef, slow-cooked to perfection. The beef is typically marinated in beer overnight, which helps to tenderize the meat and infuse it with a deep, malty flavor. Onions, carrots, and herbs are added to the stew, creating a robust and savory sauce. The dish is often served with crusty bread or, like many Belgian dishes, accompanied by a side of golden fries.


Waterzooi is a traditional Belgian stew that originated in the city of Ghent. This creamy and comforting dish is made with either chicken or fish, cooked in a broth with a mixture of vegetables, such as leeks, carrots, and potatoes. The stew is enriched with cream and thickened with egg yolks, resulting in a velvety texture and a rich flavor. Waterzooi is often garnished with fresh herbs, such as parsley or dill, and served with a side of crusty bread.

These traditional Belgian dishes offer a glimpse into the culinary heritage of the country. From the flavorful Moules-frites to the hearty Carbonade Flamande and the comforting Waterzooi, these dishes showcase the unique flavors and traditions of Belgium. Whether you are a seafood lover, a meat enthusiast, or prefer a creamy stew, Belgian cuisine has something to satisfy every palate.

Belgian Waffles and Pancakes

Liège Waffles

Liège waffles are a popular Belgian delicacy that originated in the city of Liège. These waffles are known for their dense and chewy texture, making them a unique treat. Unlike traditional waffles, Liège waffles are made with a dough that contains pearl sugar. When cooked, the sugar caramelizes and creates a deliciously sweet and crispy exterior. The inside remains soft and fluffy, making every bite a delightful experience. Liège waffles are often enjoyed plain or with simple toppings like powdered sugar or whipped cream. They are a must-try when visiting Belgium.

Brussels Waffles

Brussels waffles, also known as Belgian waffles, are a beloved breakfast item that has gained international fame. These waffles are light, airy, and have a crisp texture. They are typically rectangular in shape with deep, large squares that can hold an array of toppings. Brussels waffles are made with a yeast-based batter, giving them a slightly sweet and buttery flavor. They are often served with a dusting of powdered sugar, fresh fruits, chocolate syrup, or whipped cream. When in Belgium, indulging in a plate of warm Brussels waffles is a delightful way to start your day.


Poffertjes are miniature pancakes that have become a cherished part of Belgian cuisine. These tiny, fluffy treats are made from a batter consisting of buckwheat flour, yeast, and milk. Poffertjes are traditionally cooked in a special cast-iron pan with shallow, round indentations. The result is a batch of perfectly golden and bite-sized pancakes. Poffertjes are typically served with a generous dusting of powdered sugar and a knob of butter on top. They are a popular street food in Belgium and make for a delightful snack or dessert.

Belgium is a treasure trove of culinary delights, and its main dishes certainly do not disappoint. From the iconic Liège and Brussels waffles with their distinct textures and flavors to the charming poffertjes, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re exploring the streets of Liège or indulging in a leisurely brunch in Brussels, be sure to savor these delicious Belgian specialties.

Famous Belgian Chocolates

Belgium is renowned for its exquisite chocolates that are loved by people all over the world. The country has a long-standing tradition of producing high-quality chocolates, and its chocolatiers are highly skilled in the art of chocolate making. Here are three famous types of Belgian chocolates that you must try:


Pralines are one of the most iconic Belgian chocolate creations. These delicious treats are made by combining a variety of ingredients such as nuts, nougat, marzipan, or fruit fillings, which are then encased in a smooth chocolate shell. The pralines come in a wide range of flavors and textures, offering a delightful experience for chocolate enthusiasts. Whether you prefer dark, milk, or white chocolate, there is a praline to suit every taste.


Belgian truffles, also known as chocolate truffles, are another indulgent delight that chocolate lovers cannot resist. These velvety, melt-in-your-mouth delicacies are made by rolling ganache or a mixture of chocolate and cream into small balls, which are then coated in cocoa powder, chopped nuts, or chocolate shavings. The luxurious texture and rich flavor make Belgian truffles an absolute must-try for anyone with a sweet tooth.


While not strictly a chocolate, speculoos is a beloved Belgian treat that pairs exceptionally well with a cup of hot chocolate or coffee. These spiced shortcrust biscuits have a unique flavor profile, thanks to the addition of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Speculoos are often served alongside or used as an ingredient in various chocolate desserts, adding a delightful crunch and a hint of warmth to the overall taste experience.

Belgium’s famous chocolates, including pralines, truffles, and speculoos, are a testament to the country’s passion and expertise in the art of chocolate making. Indulging in these delectable treats is a must-do for anyone visiting Belgium or seeking to explore the country’s culinary delights. So, make sure to treat yourself to some of these heavenly Belgian chocolates and experience a moment of pure bliss.

Beer and Cheese Delights

Belgian Beers

Belgium is renowned for its exceptional beer brewing tradition. With over 1,500 different beers, this small country has become a paradise for beer lovers. Belgian beers are known for their unique flavors, diversity, and quality. From strong ales to refreshing lagers, there is a beer for every palate.

Belgian beers are often brewed using traditional methods that have been passed down through generations. They are crafted with carefully selected ingredients, including malt, hops, yeast, and water. The brewing process, which can involve fermentation in open vessels, adds distinctive flavors and aromas to the beer.

Cheese Varieties

Belgium is also famous for its delicious cheese varieties. The country boasts a rich cheese-making heritage that dates back centuries. Belgian cheeses are made from cow’s milk, sheep’s milk, or a combination of both. Each variety has its own unique taste, texture, and aroma.

One of the most well-known Belgian cheeses is the creamy and mild Bruges cheese. It has a smooth and velvety texture, making it a perfect choice for cheese enthusiasts. Another popular cheese is Herve, which is made from raw cow’s milk and has a strong and tangy flavor. Other notable Belgian cheeses include Maredsous, Chimay, and Orval.

Beer and Cheese Pairings

When it comes to pairing beer and cheese, Belgium offers a plethora of options. The country’s diverse beer and cheese selections create endless possibilities for delicious combinations.

For a classic pairing, try pairing a Belgian wheat beer, such as Hoegaarden, with a soft and creamy cheese like Bruges. The crisp and refreshing flavors of the beer complement the rich and buttery texture of the cheese.

If you prefer a more robust combination, opt for a strong Belgian ale, such as Chimay, with a flavorful cheese like Herve. The beer’s complex flavors and high alcohol content balance well with the cheese’s sharp and tangy taste.

For a unique experience, experiment with pairing fruity Belgian beers, such as Kriek or Framboise, with a cheese like Maredsous. The beer’s fruity notes and acidity contrast beautifully with the cheese’s creamy and slightly sweet flavors.

Whether you’re a beer connoisseur or a cheese lover, exploring the world of Belgian beer and cheese pairings is a delightful adventure for your taste buds. So, next time you indulge in Belgium’s culinary delights, don’t forget to savor the exquisite combination of beer and cheese.

Discover the main dishes of Belgium

In conclusion, Belgium offers a tantalizing selection of main dishes that showcase the country’s rich culinary heritage. From the iconic Moules-frites, a dish of steamed mussels served with crispy fries, to the hearty Carbonade Flamande, a beer-braised beef stew, Belgium’s cuisine is a delightful fusion of flavors. The delicate flavors of Waterzooi, a creamy fish or chicken stew, and the indulgent taste of Stoemp, a comforting dish of mashed potatoes and vegetables, further exemplify the diversity of Belgian main dishes. Whether you are a seafood lover or a meat enthusiast, Belgium’s main dishes are sure to satisfy your taste buds and leave you craving for more. So, embark on a culinary journey and savor the incredible main dishes that Belgium has to offer.

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