25 Best Foods in Rome to Discover During Your Trip

Getting to know Rome doesn’t only imply entering the Colosseum or strolling around the Roman Forum. Even if you are not a foodie, sampling the best foods in Rome is as important if you want to delve deep into the city’s history, culture, and society.

In a meat-centered cuisine, the wealthy could afford the best cuts of the animal. But the majority of the population had to brainstorm their best ideas on how to make the most of what was left. And the recipes of cucina povera, poor cuisine, frugal and often made of scraps, are the ones that we celebrate today.

Easy-to-find legumes and grains, local veggies and offal, known in Rome as “quinto quarto”, are the main ingredients of most recipes of the former working class.

Table of Contents

Top Roman dishes to try at least once and where to find them

Let’s say it’s your first time in Rome and you are not sure where to start to sample the best Roman dishes. Find out here what are the top traditional Roman recipes, their main ingredients, and the best restaurants to try them.

If you want to get deeper into Roman cuisine, have it explained by a local expert, and manage to try small bites of more recipes, you should definitely join one of the best Rome food tours.

What are 3 foods Rome is famous for?

Rome has several dishes, but if you want to narrow them down to three, I would say the most famous recipes are pasta-based: spaghetti carbonara, bucatini amatriciana, and tonnarelli cacio e pepe.

Rome foods: First courses (pasta, risotto, soups)

Spaghetti Carbonara, what to eat in Rome for a traditional meal

Spaghetti alla Carbonara is one of the first foods in Rome to try if you are into discovering traditional recipes. Even though we know for sure it was a poor meal, the exact origins are fuzzy. While in Italy we love to claim everything we have dates back to at least a couple of hundred years ago, carbonara seems actually pretty recent. Let’s say that before the 1940s there was no sign of it.

Image: Rigatoni carbonara during Rome Testaccio food and market tour

Some appoint Tuscan charcoal workers as the inventors of this recipe, some prefer to salute the citizens of Naples and the Abruzzo region for such a gift to posterity. Even Americans tried to claim the yearned-for paternity saying that the US soldiers in Italy after WWII created the famous dish using two ingredients that were common in their diet, bacon, and eggs.

Probably the truth lies in between. It seems, in fact, that spaghetti alla carbonara is the result of contamination of cultures and habits: the simple meal of the Italian shepherds made of dry spaghetti, eggs, cacio cheese and pepper met with the American bacon, shaping the first idea of carbonara. One thing is for sure, though. If you want to make authentic Roman Carbonara, bacon is banned. You either need pancetta or guanciale.

The carbonara ingredients are a reason for debate: some prefer it with pancetta, some with guanciale. Pancetta is less fat (which doesn’t mean light), both are luscious and guilt-carrying. Beat the egg yolks in the large dish that will contain the finished pasta, add two spoons of cacio cheese, black pepper and a little of the water where the spaghetti is cooking. Keep aside half of the eggs for later and while the pasta is cooking, brown the finely sliced guanciale (or pancetta) in a pan until it is crunchy and the fat looks almost translucent.

When the spaghetti is ready (al dente, please), drop them on the dish with the eggs and cheese. If you manage, with a big fork directly from the pot to keep them moistened enough to form a delicate cream. Stir well, add the guanciale, the grated cheese, and more pepper. Keep stirring so that the egg thickens. If it becomes too dry, add some of the cooking water.

The result should be a velvety cream enriching your pasta experience. Please refrain from adding ingredients such as onion, garlic, chili or fresh cream.

Where to eat spaghetti alla carbonara?

Some of the best places in Rome to eat carbonara are Da Enzo al 29 (Via dei Vascellari 29) which we visited during our Trastevere food tour, Da Danilo (Via Petrarca 13), Roscioli (Via dei Giubbonari 21), L’Arcangelo (Via Giuseppe Gioacchino Belli 59).

Bucatini all’Amatriciana traditional Roman dish

Bucatini all’amatriciana is another famous Roman pasta recipe. Except, it wasn’t created in Rome. Amatriciana, in fact, comes from Amatrice, a town in Rieti province, still in the Lazio region. Sadly enough, Amatrice was one of the towns that were worst hit by the earthquake of August 24th, 2016, when more than 200 people lost their lives and the city was completely destroyed.

bucatini amatriciana rome dish
Bucatini all’Amatriciana in Rome

Rome and Amatrice have always dragged a cultural fight over the origins of this traditional dish. The most valid version wants the sauce to have been introduced to Rome by the citizens of Amatrice. Hence, the term “amatriciana”.

In Rome, in fact, there is an alley called “Vicolo degli Amatriciani”, where Amatrice residents used to come and sell their products. The area was filled with trattorias mainly run by Amatrice residents. Here, they initially served this dish in its “gricia” version, meaning the pasta dressed only with pecorino cheese, black pepper, and guanciale (cured pork meat), originally from Grisciano, a small town in Rieti province.

Apparently, the addition of tomato sauce dates back to the 17th Century. It first appears in the cookbook of renowned Roman chef Francesco Leonardi. He prepared it for the feast organized by Pope Pius VII at the Quirinale Palace in honor of Francis I Emperor of Austria.

The Amatriciana, made with San Marzano tomato sauce, guanciale, chili pepper, a little white wine, olive oil, salt, and black pepper, and a sprinkle of pecorino cheese on top, is best combined with pasta such as bucatini, spaghetti, and rigatoni. To make this recipe, the original recipe wants guanciale. If you can’t find it where you live, make sure you buy it when in Rome, or use bacon, even though it’s slightly different.

Where to eat bucatini all’amatriciana?

Plenty of places in Rome where you will see the Amatriciana on the menu, but not all of them will serve the original recipe. Some of the best restaurants in Rome for this dish are Armando al Pantheon (Salita de’ Crescenzi 31) and Felice a Testaccio (Via Mastro Giorgio 29).

Tonnarelli Cacio e Pepe is among the best foods in Rome

Square-shaped “guitar spaghetti” according to the Abruzzo tradition, in Rome this type of fresh pasta is known under the name of tonnarelli, the preferred one for this recipe. The original recipe of this Roman food is one of the dishes belonging to the cucina povera tradition of Lazio and Abruzzo made with the little ingredients shepherds could carry with them on the pastures.

tonnarelli cacio e pepe roman dishes
Tonnarelli cacio e pepe from Felice a Testaccio among the best in Rome

This rustic dish is easy to understand. Its main ingredients are just as the name reads: cacio (Roman pecorino cheese) and black pepper. During the cooking process, it’s crucial to pay attention to the detail. If you don’t, your effort will fail at the last minute.

If you want to make a perfect cacio e pepe, grate the cacio cheese and keep it in the bowl with the freshly ground pepper. When the pasta is ready (al dente), drain it by transferring it directly to the bowl with a slotted spoon so that it retains some of the water (now rich in starch) and creates the creamy texture distinctive of this dish. Eat it very warm.

Where to eat tonnarelli cacio e pepe?

Not all restaurants in Rome bother to make it properly. I myself had the unpleasant experience of having delivered “butter and pepper” pasta.

Some of the places in Rome where you can find the real deal are Felice A Testaccio (Via di Mastro Giorgio 29), Armando al Pantheon (Salita dei Crescenzi 31, Tel. +39 06 6880 3034, always packed, booking a few days in advance is mandatory).

Rigatoni con la pajata

The term “pajata” is used to indicate the first part of the small intestine of the dairy calf after being cleaned but still with the milk eaten by the little veal. Well, despite what you might think, this is considered a delicacy by Roman palates.

The history of the pajata is common to most traditional Roman dishes. Using parts of the animal’s entrails is a common trait of the cucina povera that defines today’s Rome typical foods. What back in the day were kitchen scraps, today make up for a treat in the restaurant.

The pajata is used to make a few dishes including a sauce for rigatoni pasta. How? By cutting it into pieces, cooking it with the herbs and seasoning typical of Mediterranean cuisines such as celery, garlic, onion, carrot, chili, tomato, and olive oil. Let the ingredients simmer for a long time on a slow fire and you will get a thick sauce. A sprinkle of pecorino romano on top and you can enjoy the treat.

Where to eat rigatoni con pajata?

Head to places like Lo Scopettaro (Lungotevere Testaccio 7), Checchino dal 1887 (Via di Monte Testaccio 30), Da Fortunata Osteria (Via del Pellegrino 11), and Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16).

Tagliatelle ai funghi porcini

Even though not strictly a Roman dish, tagliatelle or fettuccine pasta with porcini mushrooms are served in many restaurants in the city and always very popular. Obviously the best ones are those made with fresh porcini mushrooms, but when it’s not the season, they still serve it using the frozen or the dried ones.

Image: Fettuccine ai funghi porcini among the best foods in Rome.

If you are following a vegan diet and are struggling to find plant-based foods in Rome that are not side dishes, tagliatelle ai funghi porcini is a delicious option.

The traditional version of this Roman dish is made with extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, fresh parsley, and a bit of red chili pepper for an extra kick. A sprinkle of black pepper and Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino Romano at the end are optional but match very well.

Where to eat tagliatelle ai funghi porcini?

Some of the best places to have tagliatelle pasta with porcini mushrooms in Rome are Cesare al Casaletto (Via del Casaletto 45), L’Arcangelo (Via Giuseppe Gioachino Belli 59).

Penne all’Arrabbiata

This is a very simple dish fully plant-based, so if you are a vegan, you will be happy to see it mentioned in the Roman meat-centric menus. Penne all’arrabbiata is a Roman pasta dish that became famous all over the world mainly because of its simplicity and its ingredients easy to source.

Easy, cheap, and quick to make, penne all’arrabbiata is slightly hot and a typical student favorite. Because the ingredients are so simple and few, it’s essential that they are very good quality.

After gently browning a crushed (but whole) garlic clove, the chili pepper, and a stalk of parsley in a pan with extra-virgin olive oil paying attention not to over-heat the ingredients, let everything coold down before adding the fresh tomatoes. In the original recipe, the tomatoes should be fresh, but if they are not in season, tomato sauce is also used.

Where to eat penne all’arrabbiata in Rome?

Some of the best places in Rome to try penne all’arrabbiata are Felice a Testaccio (Via Mastro Giorgio 29), Trattoria Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16), and Piccolo Buco (Via del Lavatore 91).

Zuppa di broccoli e brodo di arzilla

One of the favorite traditional foods in Rome, this is a thick soup with short pasta, Roman broccoli, and thornback ray stock. It’s served as a first course or even as a consommé before the main. Normally known as a soup, you might find it more or less thick so with more pasta or more broth depending on where you eat it.

Due to the liquid component, you will eat it using a spoon, but expect several solid pieces of broccoli and the ray.

The ray is previously cooked in water and what in Rome we call “odori”, meaning onion, carrot, and celery. When cooked and tender, it’s moved to the casserole where you have previously stir-fried garlic, parsley, anchovies, and peeled tomatoes.

Where to eat zuppa di broccoli e brodo di arzilla in Rome?

You can order this delicious Rome soup in traditional restaurants such as Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16), Gino al Parlamento (Vicolo Rosini 4), Felice a Testaccio (Via Mastro Giorgio 29) on Friday.

Fettuccine alla Papalina

“Alla papalina” because its origins are linked to Rome’s past as the city of the popes. “Papalina”, in fact, is the white skullcap used by the pope. According to the myth, fettuccine alla papalina recipe was made because Pope Pius XII requested something new from his chef, a dish that reminded of the local tradition, that was delicious but more delicate in taste and easier to digest.

We don’t know the exact date, what we are sure of is that it was invented sometime in the first half of the 20th century. There are still debates on whether the pope made such a request to the Vatican chef in charge probably to impress foreign guests with something special, or before 1939 when he was still Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli who used to go to the local restaurant “La Cisterna”.

Whatever the origins, we can spot the influence of the tradition in the resemblance with the carbonara recipe, even though many of the ingredients used are not traditional from Rome. For example, the prosciutto crudo ham replaced the Roman guanciale, Parmigiano Reggiano was used in place of the Pecorino Romano, and the fresh cream is more a northern Italian ingredient rather than from central and southern Italian regions.

There are also several variations of this Roman pasta dish. Some add green peas, some replace the raw ham with cooked one (prosciutto cotto), and some omit the fresh cream altogether.

Where to eat fettuccine alla papalina?

Honestly put, even though I have often heard it mentioned, I have never seen fettuccine alla papalina on the menu of a Roman restaurant. This pasta dish is much lesser-known than the original carbonara and also less traditional in that it uses fresh cream and raw ham.

If my memory doesn’t let me down, I remember seeing it more often during my university years in Rome, so some decades years ago. Now, you will probably find it only in very local eateries in the suburbs.

Pomodori con riso

Pomodori con riso is a delicious Roman-style risotto where a large round tomato is stuffed with rice and herbs. You will hardly find this dish on a restaurant’s menu but it’s very common in local rosticcerie and tavola calda types of eateries.

Tavola calda is where you see a series of ready dishes kept warm each inside its own tray. You can order simply by pointing at the dish you prefer which gets plated and directly handed to you. At this point, you grab your tray with the different dishes and grab the table you want.

Depending on the season, pomodori con riso is made using different herbs such as basil, mint, parsley, or oregano. The rosticceria near my house always makes it with oregano and it’s absolutely delicious: oregano and tomato are a perfect match.

The rice is placed inside the tomatoes raw and cooks slowly in the oven. Finally, pomodori con riso is served with roasted potatoes.

While tavola calda places are not chef fine-dining restaurants, this is a very convenient way to eat homemade-style dishes, tasty, cheap, and very quick because it’s a sort of grab-and-eat type of place.

I see it displayed all year long but it’s a spring/summer dish so it doesn’t need to be served very hot.

Where to eat pomodori con riso in Rome?

I have never seen this Roman dish in a restaurant’s menu but pretty much always in rosticceria or tavola calda type of eateries. Tavola calda is where you will see all the ready foods the kitchen dished out and you can simply order and eat. It’s not self-service but similar.

Pizza and pinsa in Rome

Pinsa, traditional Roman pizza

Who said pizza is only from Naples? Sure, Naples is the birthplace of pizza as the world knows it, but Rome has its own treat too. It’s called pinsa, it’s oval-shaped, thin, light and delicious. Not to be confused with the crunchy Roman-style round pizza.

pinsa roman pizza
Pinsa from La Pratolina in Rome

The current recipe of the pinsa tries to stick as much as possible to the original recipe. The shepherds of the local countryside would make a thin bread using the most common grains such as spelt, wheat, and barley, and top it with easy-to-find ingredients such as veggies or meat.

In Rome, pizza al taglio is one of the favorite street foods, and the pinsa is often found as a grab-and-go treat. There are also places where you can order it at the table and enjoy it for dinner.

Where to eat the pinsa in Rome?

Some of the very best places in Rome for pinsa are Pizzeria La Pratolina (Via degli Scipioni 248) for a lovely dinner, Pinsa ‘Mpò (Via dei Gracchi 7), street food style pinsa on the go.

READ MORE: The best places for pizza in Rome

Popular side dishes in Rome

Carciofi alla Giudìa and Carciofi alla Romana

When in season, I never miss ordering artichokes in Rome. Alla giudìa and alla romana are two ways to prepare them. Alla giudìa is Jewish style and very common in the Jewish quarter close to Largo Argentina.

carciofo alla romana food in rome
Carciofo alla romana served at Felice a Testaccio

The difference between the two recipes is that carciofi alla giudìa are deep-fried in very hot olive oil. This makes the outer leaves of the artichoke spread wide open and become nice and crunchy.

On the other hand, carciofi alla romana is cooked in a pan and stuffed with garlic, parsley and mint.

carciofo alla giudia rome
Carciofo alla giudia artichoke in Rome

Where to eat carciofi in Rome?

This is a pretty common dish on Roman tables, but I suggest you order it only when the artichokes are in season in Spring. You will find great carciofi alla giudìa in the Jewish ghetto in places like Nonna Betta (via del Portico d’Ottavia 16), Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16), Piperno (Monte de’ Cenci 9), and Giggetto al Portico d’Ottavia (Via del Portico d’Ottavia 21a).

Good carciofi alla romana in typical Roman style can be found at Felice a Testaccio, Matricianella (Via del Leone 4), and Armando al Pantheon (Salita de’ Crescenzi 31).

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Puntarelle

Puntarelle is one of the most favorite side dishes by Romans and after you’ve tried it, you’ll understand why. This is a type of crunchy greens that in Rome is used as raw as a salad. The right way to do it and how you are likely to find it everywhere is slightly marinated in white vinegar and anchovies.

Puntarelle are the sprouts of cicoria catalogna or cicoria asparago, a variant of chicory. In fact, you will immediately spot the bitter aftertaste typical of this green veggie. They are in season in winter all throughout the spring.

Where to eat puntarelle in Rome?

When in season, you will find puntarelle basically everywhere in Rome. If you happen near the Trevi Fountain, try puntarelle at Baccano (Via delle Muratte 23), they remain crunchy and tasty to the end, and Piccolo Buco (Via del Lavatore 91).

Cicoria ripassata

This is another side dishes Romans adore. Cicoria ripassata is simply sautéed chicory. It’s a very easy recipe that if you like it, you can make at home without problems.

After blanching the well-washed and clean chicory in salty water for some 7 to 8 minutes, place it in a pan where you have previously heated up extra-virgin olive oil, garlic and half a teaspoon of red chili pepper flakes (or half fresh chili). Stir it until fully coated and serve hot.

The chicory is in season in the fall and winter. Its bitter aftertaste is what makes it a digestion aid.

Where to eat cicoria ripassata in Rome?

Just like for the puntarelle, also cicoria ripassata will be ever-present on most menus in Rome.

Vignarola romana

Made with fava beans, peas, and other veggies such as artichokes and Romaine lettuce, vignarola romana is a rich side dish of the Roman tradition. Seasonal in spring and summer, even though a very famous side dish in Rome, vignarola is not often present on restaurants’ menus.

Probably because it’s so rich, you can find it more often served as pasta dressing rather than a side dish on its own.

Where to eat vignarola romana in Rome?

You can find it as a pasta condiment at Er Polpetta (Via di Tor Millina 24).

Main dishes in Rome (meat and fish)

Coda alla Vaccinara, an old Roman traditional dish

This typical Roman dish first appeared in the Regola neighborhood, the pulsing heart of Rome laid out around Campo de’ Fiori. Why? Because it’s here that the “vaccinari” (ox butchers) used to live.

coda alla vaccinara roman traditional dishes

Coda alla vaccinara is considered the top dish of the “quinto quarto”, literally translating into “the fifth quarter”. This is the offal of the ox, what was left of the animal after the best cuts were sold to the wealthy.

This traditional Roman recipe consists of a braised oxtail stew in meat broth enriched with lard, tomato sauce, celery, and seasoned with parsley, garlic, onion, carrot and a glass of red wine. The oxtail needs to simmer for hours, which makes it a pretty long dish. And this is why having it in one of the best traditional restaurants in Rome is better than trying to make it by yourself in the house.

Where to eat coda alla vaccinara?

According to some, the best place to eat coda alla vaccinara in Rome is Checchino dal 1887 (30, via di Monte Testaccio). This is a traditional restaurant near the old slaughterhouse that claims it accidentally invented the Roman dish in 1890.

Fortunately, it’s not the only place where you can have a good coda alla vaccinara. Try Felice a Testaccio, Da Enzo al 29 (via dei Vascellari 29), Tram Tram (via dei Reti 44), Armando al Pantheon (Salita dei Crescenzi 31).

Saltimbocca alla Romana

The word “saltimbocca” means jump into the mouth. Just like for every dish that reaches the top of the hit parade of the best foods in Rome, also for the saltimbocca alla romana the origins appear shrouded in mystery. Some even claim it was first seen in Brescia, northern Italy. What we know for sure is that businessman and cookbook writer Pellegrino Artusi mentioned it in the late 19th century after he tried it at the historic Roman trattoria “Le Venete”.

saltimbocca alla romana dish
Saltimbocca alla romana from Felice a Testaccio

One of the most popular traditional Roman dishes, saltimbocca alla romana consists of tender medallions of veal cutlets covered with prosciutto crudo (an Italian type of cold cuts) and sage.

Preparing this delicacy involves pounding the cutlets with the meat mallet, covering them with a thin layer of flour, and adding a leaf of fresh sage and a slice of prosciutto on top. Stick everything together with a toothpick. Melt a knob of butter on a pan and start placing the meat making both sides brown but be careful not to overcook the side with the ham.

When ready, quickly simmer with a drizzle of white wine. Serve them very hot with a side dish of your choice. In Rome, they love it with a fresh salad, bitter sautéed chicory, or puntarelle greens.

Where to eat saltimbocca alla romana?

Some of the best places to try this traditional Roman food are the very traditional Checchino dal 1887 (Via di Monte Testaccio 30), Armando al Pantheon (Salita de’ Crescenzi 31), Hostaria Romana (Via del Boccaccio 1), and Zampagna all’Ostiense (via Ostiense 179).

Trippa alla Romana

An old dish of the traditional cucina povera in Rome and central Italian regions, trippa (tripe) is nothing but the stomach of animals, usually ruminants. One of the once-poor, now redeemed foods in Rome, the tripe here is cooked with mint and Pecorino Romano cheese.

Its consistency and texture are not my favorites in a dish, but in Rome, this is now a delicacy. Tradition wants tripe on Saturdays, but now you can find it also on other days.

Where to eat trippa alla romana?

The best places to try this Roman food are the historic traditional restaurants like Checchino dal 1887 (Via di Monte Testaccio 30), which specializes in classic fares, and Amando al Pantheon, where they cook it loyal to the local tradition.

Abbacchio a scottadito

Abbacchio is the lamb, a stronghold in Roman cuisine. Cooked in many ways, when it’s scottadito, it means that the lamb’s ribs are left to briefly marinate in oil and rosemary and then grilled until crunchy. Served very hot.

Other ways you will find the lamb in Rome are roasted in the oven with potatoes and deep-fried with a bread crust.

Where to eat abbacchio allo scottadito in Rome?

Try it at Cesare al Casaletto (Via del Casaletto45), not in the city center but easy to reach with the tram 8 from Piazza Venezia or Largo Argentina, at Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16), at Matricianella (Via del Leone 4), and at Piccolo Buco (Via del Lavatore 91).

Polpette al sugo

This is the typical “grandma dish”. Very popular in the Roman trattorias, you will find it also in other regions of Italy but probably more in private homes than in restaurants. These are simply meatballs with tomato sauce.

Where to eat polpette al sugo in Rome?

You are going to love polpette al sugo from Felice a Testaccio (Via di Mastro Giorgio 29) and also as a filling in the sandwiches of Mordi e Vai stall of Mercato Testaccio (Via Beniamino Franklin 12/E) or in Trapizzino’s pizza pockets (Via Giovanni Branca 88, Piazzale Milvio 13, Piazza Trilussa 46, Via Giovanni Giolitti 36).

Pollo ai peperoni

Chicken with bell peppers is a classic main from Rome’s cucina povera tradition, and like most Rome foods, it requires few ingredients. Unfortunately, this delicious Roman dish is slowly disappearing from the menus and you can find only in a few local trattorias and in the traditional restaurants that want to keep alive their origins.

The original recipe used only tomatoes because the sweet bell peppers were introduced in the capital only around the 1960s. In fact, to make the chicken with bell peppers Roman dish, the sweet peppers are cooked separately and added only at the end after the chicken was cooked in the tomato sauce until very tender.

Where to eat pollo con i peperoni in Rome?

In Rome, eat pollo alla romana con i peperoni at Felice a Testaccio (Via Mastro Giorgio 29), strictly on Monday according to tradition, Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16), L’Oste ai Banchi Vecchi (Via dei Banchi Vecchi 140/A), and Armando al Pantheon (Salita de’ Crescenzi 31).

Coratella con carciofi

Typical Roman dish common all year but especially for Easter, coratella con carciofi is for the brave eater who doesn’t shy away when it comes to a juicy mix of lamb offal that includes pieces like heart, lungs, kidneys, spleen, and liver.

Like the tripe, also the coratella offal is considered the noble part of the so-called “quinto quarto”, the pieces of the animal that was usually discarded by the wealthy families and often used as a payment for the butchers.

Coratella can be taken from the lamb (agnello) or the abbacchio, which is a little lamb that was only fed with milk and is butchered after less than a month from its birth.

The recipe doesn’t really require ingredients that are difficult to source. Cook the artichokes in a pan with olive oil and garlic and the offal in another pan with oil and onion. The final result needs to have both offal and artichokes well-cooked and tender.

Where to eat coratella con carciofi in Rome?

Try it at Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16) and Felice a Testaccio only on Thursday.

Baccalà in guazzetto alla romana

Baccalà is salted codfish and in guazzetto means cooked in a casserole with garlic, onion, tomato, capers, and in some versions also potatoes as a sort of stew.

The codfish is cooked in the tomato sauce and usually the traditional Roman versions has an addition of raisins and pine nuts, just like you will have them at Sora Lella. While at L’Arcangelo, they replaces the raisins with the dried plums.

Where to eat baccalà in guazzetto in Rome?

Some of the best are from Sora Lella (Via di Ponte Quattro Capi 16), Gino al Parlamento (Vicolo Rosini 4), and L’Arcangelo (Via Giuseppe Gioachino Belli 59).

Baccalà in pastella

This Roman dish is very versatile and pretty much a staple on the city’s menus. Depending on the restaurant, you might find it as a starter/appetizer or as one of the mains.

Another dish with salted codfish, but this time, it’s deep-fried. Pastella, in fact, is simply the flour-based batter they use to coat the fish before placing in on the hot oil.

Deep-fried codfish is a typicla Roman dish at Christmas in Romans’ homes.

Where to eat baccalà in pastella in Rome?

Try it as the main course at Felice a Testaccio on Friday, or as street food from Dar Filettaro (Largo dei Librari 88) specialized in codfish in all manners.

Street food in Rome

Supplì, typical Roman street food

In Rome, it’s called supplì, in Sicily, arancino. They are made in different nuances, but the deal is pretty much the same: a deep-fried stuffed rice ball.

suppli rome street food
Supplì from Supplizio in Rome

The classic supplì in Rome is with ragout sauce and mozzarella cheese, but most places serve it also with other Roman recipes such as cacio e pepe, one of my favorites.

Where to eat supplì in Rome?

You can find supplì in all street food places in Rome, so it’s pretty hard to narrow it down to a few addresses. Most pizza al taglio places sell it, some of the best supplì are at Trapizzino, at Pizzarium (Via della Meloria 43), one of the best pizza places in Rome, Supplizio (Via dei Banchi Vecchi 143) and delis like Castroni (Via Cola di Rienzo 196/198, Via Frattina 79, Via Ottaviano 55).

Fiori di zucca ripieni alla romana

This is a delicious starter always present on Rome’s menus but only when in season, so from late spring all through the summer. Fiori di zucca is the zucchini flowers, and Romans love them. Fiori di zucca ripieni means that the zucchini flowers are stuffed with anchovies and mozzarella curd cheese.

Sometimes you can find them just deep-fried without filling and they are called fiori di zucca in pastella, with “pastella” meaning batter.

Where to eat fiori di zucca ripieni in Rome?

While sometimes you might find it as an appetizer in restaurants, it is often sold as street food in the local rosticcerie (delis).

Do you need a sweet treat after lunch?
Discover the best gelato in Rome!

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About The Author: Angela Corrias

Hi, my name is Angela Corrias! I am an Italian journalist, photographer, and blogger living in Rome. After over ten years of living abroad, I finally came to the conclusion that in order to better organize my future adventures, I needed a base. Since I know and love Rome so much, I moved back to the Eternal City. This is how Rome Actually was born. Here, I cover everything about Rome, from the local food to the culture to Roman history.

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