Take a Bite From the Delightful Dishes of the Irish Food

Updated On: September 13, 2023

Irish Food

The world is a big place. While the fact that the expansiveness of our plant made us different, it worked in our favour. Our differences have helped in introducing different cultures to the world. No matter from what culture you come from, there is always a new one to explore. Cultures are usually all about customs and traditions; this involves the existence of different food types. Ireland is one of the countries that have their very own recipes and dishes. The whole world nearly shares food from everywhere; however, Irish food is the rarest type that you can come across outside the borders of Ireland. They have more than a few delicious recipes that you will definitely love to try out.

The Development of the Irish Cuisine

Every culture has its own cuisine and Ireland, definitely, is no exception. People in Ireland have developed the Irish cuisine significantly through the years. The reasons for the development involve the mixture of different cultures that have visited Ireland throughout the centuries. In the early 17th century, the English conquest had an impact on the Irish food in a very momentous way.  That was because they took away the lands of the poor people and provided the food for England. Another thing that England did was replacing the traditional Irish food with more sophisticated types. As a result, the potato was the only food that poor people could afford through the 18th century. For that matter, poor was actually the vast majority of the population. Consequently, people had often associated the potato with Ireland; they usually used the term “Irish Potato.”

Unfortunately, with the English conquest, a great portion of delicious Irish food faded away for a long time. The good news is that the revival of the Irish food took place in the 21st century. The dishes became a bit popular ever since the revival. The recovery of the traditional Irish food included Shepherd’s Pie, Irish stew, Colcannon, Coddle, Boxty and more. On the other hand, modern Irish food has shown up. Yet, they still use the old ingredients for creating a delightful experience through their dishes.

Irish Food Through The History

Food of Ireland may have not gained popularity throughout the whole world. However, early Irish literature and Irish mythology, there were many references about the most popular Irish dishes.

The tales that featured Irish food included the tale of Finn MacCool and the Salmon of Knowledge. Since Irish mythology is a mix of Celtic and Indo-European cultures, it has a mixture of different foods. One of the most popular Irish drinks is the mead. This drink is made of honey and is usually used among the Irish wedding traditions.

The Mesolithic and Neolithic Periods

The diets of Irish people have changed considerably through history. Starting from the Mesolithic period, seafood was the main component of any meal. People used to eat what was known as Middens; they were huge mounds of shellfish. Long after the Mesolithic people were gone, came the Neolithic groups. They introduced einkorn, barley, and emmer wheat. They even kept sheep, goats, and cattle for their meat and milk.

During the Neolithic period, there were cooking sites for specific things. For example, fulacht fiadh was the name of the site where people cooked deer. This site has many holes in the ground where there is hot water in it. All across the islands of Ireland, there are many fulacht fiadh sites. Archaeologists claim that they date back to the Bronze Age, but people in Ireland still use them recently.

The Most Popular Traditional Irish Food

Most of the European nations’ cuisines are quite prevalent. The same doesn’t apply to the Irish cuisine; however, that has been starting to change through the last couple of years. Ireland is popular for producing the best beef and lamb around the world. Moreover, the country possesses extremely skilful chefs that are capable of creating exciting dishes. The Irish food is no longer limited to potatoes; there are more than a few delightful dishes to indulge in. Get yourself familiarized with the best traditional dishes that you can try while in Ireland.

Irish Stew

Irish stew is one of the most prevalent Irish foods that you will ever hear about. They come in a lot of different forms. On the other hand, there are certain recipes that Irish chefs usually use while cooking Irish stew. The recipes usually revolve around potatoes, lamb, and onions; they are the main ingredients. This dish has been around since very long centuries; they are more popular in winter as well. Irish stew is a warming dish and it tastes more delicious while adding rosemary and thyme.


Pancakes are delicious, but here is a brand new form of it; boxty. This is the Irish version of pancakes. Boxty mainly consists of grated fried potatoes. Boxty is a prominent meal among the Irish food that there are even restaurants dedicated solely to this exceptional dish. There are ingredients that Irish chefs usually add, including mixed beans, chicken, smoked bacon, cheese, roasted walnuts, and chilli.

Galway Oysters

Oysters are really delicious, but you can’t say you have eaten real tasty oysters unless you taste those of Ireland. The country is known for having the best oysters; especially those that come from the County Galway. They have a superior taste that the whole world is familiar with.


Have you ever heard about colcannon? It is another delicious dish that the Irish food collection embraces. Colcannon is a blend of mashed potatoes, milk, butter, kale, cabbage, salt and pepper. It is obvious how Irish dishes appreciate the existence of potatoes that much. This dish in particular has always been involved among the surprises list. In Halloween, people hide surprises, sometimes rings, inside that the dish for the eater to find.

Soda Bread

Irish Food
Soda Bread

Among the loved carbs in the Irish food lies the bread. Irish people love creating their own bread. They even have a traditional Irish food known as Soda bread. The recipes of this traditional dish have always been an inheritance; it goes down from parents to children for generations. The dish includes other main ingredients like buttermilk, salt, and flour.

Barm Brack

Barmbrack is among the traditional Irish food; however, people in Ireland refer to it as just brack. To get to the main point, it is actually bread, but a sweet type. The bread contains raisins and sultanas. Among the Irish traditions, people serve this bread usually with a hot cup of tea. Sometimes, people use it to add certain objects to the dough in an attempt to make festive a fortune-teller game. These objects usually include a pea, a ring, or a coin; the trend is usually around during Halloween. According to the Irish customs, whoever get to find a ring is more likely to marry throughout the year.


Dublin is the Irish country that is most popular for making this meal. Coddle is a quite eccentric dish to try. The meal is made from several leftovers; they make use of them to make a brand new dish. However, the ingredients include bacon, onions, sausages, and potatoes. All of the ingredients should be put together then you should steam them together. The way of making up this dish is pretty strange, but, surprisingly, Dubliners love this dish dearly. Famous authors like Jonathan Swift and Seán O’Casey have mentioned that coddle was their favourite meal. Reliable sources have also confirmed the latter information.

Boiled Bacon and Cabbage

Bacon is one of Ireland’s favorite food. While boiling may not sound like the best way of cooking, this dish is tasty. The dish is all about boiling- boiled cabbage, boiled potatoes, and, of course, boiled bacon. Among the ingredients, pork is a very essential one. To have the perfect dish ever, soak salted pork the night before. Make sure the pork are pieces from the pig’s shoulder and back.

Guinness Cake

Well, Irish people surely have to satisfy their sweet tooth and cravings. The Irish food has a wide array of ingredients that don’t deny people their right to indulge on delightful meals. Guinness cake is an Irish dessert; a moist chocolate cake. There is always an icing on the cake and it is usually a cream cheese.

Cockles and Mussels

This is the cherry on top of the cake to the seafood lovers; the cockles and mussels. Surprisingly, the Wild Atlantic Way is not the only way where you can find this meal. In case you are not aware what the cockles are, they are small clams that come from salt water.

Dulse & Yellowman

Irish people, those of the Northern Ireland in particular, celebrate Lammas Fair. The latter is actually a celebration that takes place during the summer. In this ceremony, people emphasise over the importance of food. It may as well be more important than the party itself. During this annual summer gala, dulse and yellowman dish makes a huge appearance. It was one of the most traditional dishes of Ireland. Dulse and Yellowman is mostly a red seaweed chip that gets combined with a sweet, honeycomb toffee. Contrariwise, some people love to enjoy this dish on normal days and not only during the celebration.

Irish Breakfast

Around the world, breakfast usually consists of ready-made food. However, England has cooked breakfast; on the other hand, Irish food includes a fried breakfast. Over and beyond, some people may prefer sipping a cup of tea and having toast or soda bread as breakfast. A real Irish breakfast may include ingredients like bacon, eggs, sausages and fried tomatoes. Surprisingly, some people love having more additions like hash browns, mushroom, pork meat with oatmeal and baked beans.

Black & White Pudding

The Irish seemingly have some interesting discoveries that you would love to indulge in. Among those discoveries lie the black and the white pudding. Let’s get to the point; what every pudding consists of. Starting with the black pudding, it’s a mixture of pork ingredients- blood, fat, and meat- mixed with oatmeal and barely. All of the past ingredients usually include suet and sausage that has an intense flavour. On the other hand, the white pudding is quite similar to the black one. However, it does not include blood in the ingredients. The black pudding is actually more popular around the world than the white one. Conversely, any Irish breakfast usually includes a slice of each of them.

Shepherd’s Pie

Most of the Irish food is best eaten during the cold days of winter. This fact does not exclude Shepherd’s Pie from the list as well. Obviously, it is a pie made in a bulky casserole where the main ingredients are lamb or mutton. On the other hand, people of the modern days have altered some of the ingredients and make it with beef. It is one of Ireland’s favourite dishes and most famous ones as well.


Champ is another Irish food that pretty resembles the colcannon. People also refer to it as the colcannon’s cousin. However, this dish contains cheaper ingredients that those of the colcannon. Thus, it is more common among people of the lower classes in Ireland. On the other hand, the dish is also popular to show up during Halloween, just like its cousin.

Green Irish Food and Desserts for St. Patricks Day

Saint Patrick’s Day is an amazing holiday to celebrate. It has become a tradition that everything goes green on that specific day. People wear green and themes of the stores and shops go accordingly. Interestingly, food becomes green too; it has become a worldwide notion that green food is Irish food. It is not a fact for sure; however, the statement is partially right. If you are going to celebrate this day, then we need to introduce you to a list of green desserts. They are all mouthwatering and taste delicious as much as they seem.

Minty Milkshakes

Milkshakes are delicious, but you need to try out the minty ones. It is an invigorating blend of milk, vanilla, ice cream, and mint extract. Additionally, there is always food colouring that makes the drink become green. For a better green-themed drink, add striped straws, white and green.

Green Velvet Cupcake Shamrocks

Shamrocks are usually symbols that signify the big day of Saint Patrick’s Day. People in Ireland use them to create little cupcakes with green velvet to complement the theme of the day. The cupcakes come in trios and get served on a platter after adding the final finishes. The food colouring is what makes those tasty little pieces looking fascinating.

Green Velvet Layer Cake

This is pretty much similar to the cupcake, but it is all about more layers and bigger portions. It is an ordinary piece of cake, so the ingredients should depend on your preferences. However, adding green food colouring will turn the cake into a nice emerald piece of deliciousness. Don’t forget about the topping too. It always tastes better with that buttercream frosting on top for an extra fluffiness.

Shamrock Pretzels

This is the best dessert for those who love the taste of sweet and sour. Those pretzels are green due to the addition of food colouring. They are made in trios, just like the cupcakes, to present the shamrock.

Sugar Wafers

They are easy wafers that you even make on your own. All you need is vanilla sugar wafers and green candy melts.  And, it is always a good idea to add sprinkles here and there.

Peek-a-Boo St. Patrick’s Cake

This cake is a sign of creativity and deliciousness all combined in simple layers of cake. Over the cake lies a green frosting to represent the day efficiently. Then, there is a surprise that you find once you cut the cake into slices. A shape of a rainbow shamrock is inside with a delightful appearance of several colours.

Leprechaun Hat S’mores

Leprechauns were famous fairies that you can read about in tales of the Irish mythology. People have always been familiar with the fact that these creatures wear green attire. So, they are perfect for Saint Patrick’s Day. These delicious s’mores takes the shape of the creature’s funny hat. They seem too cute to eat, but they are also too flavoursome to resist.

Mint Chocolate Lasagna

People refer to it with lasagna, for it is all about layers of mint chocolate. The best part about this cake is that you don’t need to bake it. Mix the ingredients and leave it in the fridge for about an hour then they’re ready for you to devour.

Green Donuts

If everything is green on this day, so why can’t the doughnuts join the league? You can come across these doughnuts in almost every bakery shop. Some of them are made of green velvet while others are only of green food colouring. They are as yummy as a doughnut can be.

Mini Grasshopper Pies

Mini pies are cute, and green ones can get even cuter. These pies take over the candy shops all around Ireland in Saint Patrick’s Day. However, you can do them all by yourself if you have the time and inclination for so. They need no baking or oven; they are as simple as that.

More St. Patrick’s Day’s Desserts Recipe. Click Here.

With plenty of Irish chefs pursuing local produce and ingredients, Irish cuisine is going from strength to strength.

Also, Don’t forget to check out our related blogs that might interest you such as  Delightful Irish Dishes| Danny Boy Song| Famous Irish Who Made History in Their Lifetime| Digging into The Secrets of Irish Pookas| The Globally Celebrated St. Patrick Day| Irish Wedding Traditions| Famous Irish Proverbs

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