Top 5 Irish Food Traditions

irish food traditions

Many Irish dishes are the result of housewives finding ways to use up food and make a filling meal. For example, shepherds pie was first introduced to use up the leftovers of a previous night’s stew and is now a staple dish on an Irish dinner table.

Another popular meal is bacon and cabbage. The dish is inexpensive and filling.


When it comes to Irish foods, corned beef and cabbage might be the first thing that comes to mind. But it turns out that the Emerald Isle has a few more hearty meals that are just as traditional and delicious! One of these is coddle, a hearty stew that is made with potatoes, sausages, and bacon. It’s slow-cooked until everything is tender and flavorful. This dish is perfect for any day of the week, but it’s especially satisfying on a cold winter day.

This stew is traditionally served with a side of bread to mop up all the juices. It’s easy to make ahead, too!

This dish is a classic from Dublin, where it has been enjoyed since the 17th century. It even appears in two of James Joyce’s literary works! The name derives from the French verb caudle, which means to boil gently or parboil. This stew is made with rashers (Irish bacon), pork sausage, and potatoes that are slowly simmered for hours.


Champ is a traditional Irish potato dish that is very similar to colcannon. It has a very simple ingredients and can be served year round. It is a very filling food and can be eaten at any time of the day. It can be enjoyed on its own or with a variety of other dishes.

The dish was popular during Ireland’s famine times because it was cheap and easy to make. The nutritional value of the cabbage or kale mixed with potatoes helped stave off starvation for many people during those difficult times.

Today, the dish is still widely consumed in Ireland and is a staple on many Irish pub menus. The recipe is very easy to make, and can be made with a variety of add-ins. Try adding a handful of peas or a pinch of parsley to the dish for a different taste. You can also add a sprinkling of chives for garnishing.


During the Irish potato famine in the early twentieth century, farls were one of the few foods that could be relied upon to provide an inexpensive, high-energy source of protein. They are easy to prepare and can be eaten warm or cold, though they are often fried a second time with butter before serving.

A farl (reduced form of the Scots word fardel) is any flatbread or cake that is cut into quarters. In Northern Ireland, it is usually used in reference to skillet-cooked soda bread or potato bread/cakes (potato farls) that are served as part of an Ulster fry breakfast.

A berry fool is a light dessert made with any kind of berries and chilled heavy cream. It is a testament to the richness of European cuisine and is often associated with Halloween. Much like Mardi Gras king cakes, this dish is baked with a ring hidden within that whoever finds it gets good luck.


A salty, messy treat, crubeens are boiled then deep-fried pig’s feet. They’re a popular 19th and 20th century Irish street food and were commonly sold near bars to keep pub crawlers fueled up while they downed pints after pints. They’re also enjoying something of a renaissance these days, especially in restaurants where they can be deboned for more eating options.

Ireland’s climate is well suited to growing rhubarb, so it makes sense that a tart featuring this juicy berry would be a popular dessert in this country. The recipe can be varied by adding a layer of sliced apples to the filling for a flavor contrast.

These traditional Irish foods are just a few of the many delicious eats that make this island nation worth a visit. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a hearty stew, a comforting soup, or some sweet treats, Ireland has something for everyone. So why not give it a try? You won’t be disappointed.