Do you want to sample the best Canadian cuisine My Lifestyle offers? From centuries-old soups to luscious desserts, these are 10 genuinely famous Canadian dishes and where to find them in Canada.
Poutine – best Canadian Dishes
Poutine, one of several culinary marvels from French Canada, is regarded as the archetypal Canadian meal. This popular meal (or side dish) is reported to have originated in several small villages in Quebec in the 1950s. A true poutine is made with spicy meat sauce and “squeaky” curds on fries.
Where to get it: Any Canadian diner that serves fries, including huge chains like McDonald’s, will usually provide poutine. Smoke’s Poutinerie, a national business, serves almost any protein or vegetable in calorie-heavy versions on the meal. If you want to go all out, there are annual poutine festivals across the country.
This cocktail was created in 1969 by Calgary restaurant manager Walter Chell and quickly became extremely famous. (According to Mott’s, more than 350 million Caesars are sold yearly.) The main ingredients are clamato juice, vodka, Worchester, and a salted rim.
Where to eat it: Although Caesar is a cocktail, one Vancouver restaurant has made it into a meal. The “Checkmate Caesar” comes with a complete roast chicken, cheeseburger, chicken wings, pulled pork mac and cheese hot dog, roasted vegetables, and a brownie.
Canadian bacon – best Canadian Dishes
What we call “peameal bacon” in our nation is marketed as “Canadian bacon” almost everywhere else. As opposed to traditional bacon, Canadian bacon is made from lean pork loin that has been brined and rolled in cornmeal. During the turn of the century, Canada sent pork to England, which was in short supply. It was originally rolled in yellow peas for preservation, but that was changed to cornmeal over time.
Where to get it: Carousel Bakery in Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market is famous for its Canadian bacon sandwiches, though they prefer to call them World Famous Peameal Bacon Sandwiches.
BeaverTails simply flattened donuts without a hole, are a staple of Canadian cuisine. Graham Hooker’s family had passed down the recipe for centuries, but it wasn’t until 1978 that he began to offer it to a larger audience. After a year, he launched his first BeaverTails location in Ottawa to serve the dessert, which may be sprinkled with sugar, Nutella, and a range of other treats.
Where to eat: BeaverTails has subsequently grown across Canada, with sites including Vancouver’s Grouse Mountain and Halifax’s Waterfront.
Butter Tarts – best Canadian Dishes
The origins of this rich, savory, and uniquely Canadian dish may be traced back to the late 1800s. There is continual dispute over whether raisins should be included in the recipe, which consists of a delicate, crumbly crust and a creamy center formed of a butter, sugar, and egg mixture.
Where to eat it: Most coffee shops and bakeries will have them on hand, but if you want to get serious about this delicious treat, make a trip to Ontario, the origin of the butter tart. The Butter Tart Trail, a collection of 18 bakeries selling famous sweets, can be found in rural Kenilworth, Ontario. If that isn’t enough, head three hours east to the City of Kawartha Lakes, which has its own Butter Tart Tour.
A fresh pair of eyes (not to mention taste buds) can sometimes help us comprehend what makes a dish truly Canadian. Take, for example, Canadian-style pizza, which the menu may best represent at Ron Telesky Canadian Pizza in (of all places) Berlin, Germany. How did a German pizzeria come to be known for pies inspired by the Great White North? One of the founders conducted a high school exchange in Peterborough, Ontario, and was impressed with the local pizza. Although it wasn’t as crispy and doughy as American-style, the toppings were more creative than classic Italian-style pies. The resulting pizza is in the middle on his Berlin menu: a thin-crust pizza with various inventive pizza toppings. Cronenberg Crash (cilantro pesto, tandoori tofu, mango, peanuts, and red pepper) and Wayne Gretzky are two flavors (feta, mozzarella and cheddar cheeses, Italian salami, speck and chorizo, hot peppers, chili flakes and caramelized onions). One additional (and complimentary) topping is maple syrup, boldly displayed.
Where to eat: Ron Telesky’s is located in Berlin’s Kreuzberg neighborhood.
This is a traditional French Canadian dish that dates back to the 1600s. The flaky pie is thought to have gained its name from the baking dish. Tourtière is normally filled with ground pig, beef, veal, or game, as well as herbs and spices, while ground fish is used in some coastal areas. The heavy dinner is most typically consumed around Christmas and New Year’s, but Quebec grocery stores keep it on hand all year.
Where to eat it: Aux Anciens Canadiens in Quebec City is well-known for its tourtiere. The restaurant is well-known for specialized in traditional Quebecois cuisine, particularly tourtiere.
The crumb mixture, vanilla-flavored butter frosting, and melted chocolate make up this luscious tri-layered dessert bar. The recipe for a “chocolate square” from 1952 can be found in a book called The Ladies Auxiliary at the Nanaimo General Hospital. A year later, a cookbook with what is considered to be the first recipe under the name “Nanaimo bar” was released.
Where should you consume it: At home! The Mayor of Nanaimo launched a competition in 1985 in the intention of discovering the best, most definitive Nanaimo bar recipe. Joyce Hardcastle’s recipe won, and it can be found on the city’s website.
Split Pea Soup – best Canadian Dishes
To commemorate the 400th anniversary of French explorer Samuel de Champlain’s travels, Ottawa chef Marc Miron was inspired to investigate what nourished him and other early settlers in their new home. They can be credited with originating split pea soup, a traditional French Canadian dish. The adventurers packed cured meats, dried peas to endure the lengthy journey, and vegetables grown in their new home. As a result, a Canadian dish that has been relished for centuries has been created.
Everything with Ketchup!
While ketchup is more of a condiment than a dish, there is something uniquely Canadian about it. Of course, there are ketchup chips, which are a local favorite but are unheard of in the United States. (Here are some more Canadian treats you won’t find anyplace else.) The same can be said for slathering ketchup on Kraft Dinner (another favorite Canadian meal) and dipping grilled cheese in ketchup. The latter is such a popular combination that Lay’s chose it as a winning flavor after asking people to come up with a new potato chip flavor combination.
Where should you consume it: At your dinner table.