Home » Culinary Tourism Hobbyist? These 10 Typical Indonesian Foods You Must Try!

Culinary Tourism Hobbyist? These 10 Typical Indonesian Foods You Must Try!

by Maria James
typical Indonesian foods

Typical Indonesian Foods – If you’re a fan of traditional foods, then Indonesian cuisine is sure to be your favorite! Here are 10 typical Indonesian foods you can’t miss while in this tropical island country.

One of the most popular snacks you’ll find throughout Indonesia is siomay, a crispy fish cake typically made with tenggiri fish meat. It’s commonly served with peanut sauce, kecap manis and sambal.

10 Typical Indonesian Foods You Can’t Miss

Sourced from Vacation Indonesia and Informasi Wisata, here are some typical Indonesian foods that you don’t want to miss.

1. Satay

Satay is a popular Indonesian dish consisting of skewered meat, typically beef or chicken. It is served with a variety of sauces and is often paired with other dishes.

It is believed to have originated in Java, Indonesia, where it was developed from the Indian kebab brought by Arab traders. Check out this photo of a satay seller in Java in 1870.

2. Gado-Gado

Gado-gado is one of the most popular Indonesian dishes and is eaten across the islands. It is a salad made up of blanched vegetables with a spicy peanut sauce.

This salad is incredibly versatile and you can add anything you want, from spinach to potatoes or eggs. It can also be made in bulk, which makes it ideal for lunches or dinner parties.

3. Bakpao

Indonesian cuisine is rich in flavour, often a combination of different basic tastes. Typically, it is spicy and savory.

Cooking methods are fried, grilling, roasting, dry roasting and sauteing. Besides, Indonesian food also includes some dishes which are soups or hot drinks.

Bakpao is a great fluffy meat-filled buns that offer much delight in every bite. Vendors line busy roads during rush hour to serve these dumplings to hungry passersby.

4. Asinan Sayur

Indonesian cuisine has a large variety of recipes. Many of these dishes are based on regional traditions.

One of the dishes that must be tried is “Asinan sayur”, a salad with vegetables, hard-boiled eggs, tempeh and tofu served with mouth-watering peanut sauce. It’s especially common during Ramadhan (moslem fasting month) and is a favourite among locals, especially in West Java.

5. Kopi Joss

Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world, and the country is renowned for its delicious cuisine. There are a number of typical foods that must be tried, but one that deserves special mention is Kopi Joss.

This specialty coffee has a unique twist that sets it apart from other coffees. It has a burning piece of charcoal added to it directly during the brewing process.

6. Bakso

A bowl of bakso (meatball soup) is one of the most popular Indonesian street foods. It is usually served as a simple dish at a warung or humble tent food stall, but it can also be found in restaurants.

Like many other typical Indonesian dishes, bakso is a fusion of Chinese influences mixed with local Indonesian flavor. It is often served with noodles and wilted greens.

7. Sop Buntut

Indonesian cuisine is a unique blend of Southeast Asian flavors, exotic fruits, and rich meats. From swanky restaurants to modest roadside eateries, the country’s culinary heritage is one that must be experienced firsthand.

Sop buntut, or oxtail soup, is a classic Indonesian dish that must be tried. This clear beef broth includes a mix of ingredients like potatoes, carrots, leeks, celery, and fried shallots.

8. Tempeh

Tempeh is a popular Indonesian dish that is a full protein dietary alternative to meat and fish. It is also a great choice for vegans and vegetarians who want to consume minimally processed foods.

In its simplest form, tempeh is sliced into thin pieces and stir-fried with subtly sweet Indonesian soy sauce (kecap manis). It can be served as a main course or a side dish.

9. Sayur Lodeh

Traditionally associated with Javanese cuisine, sayur lodeh is an Indonesian vegetable stew that’s served hot in coconut milk. It’s a popular part of selamatan (the traditional Javanese ceremony), but also eaten as a regular meal in Indonesia.

It’s made with seven key ingredients in a coconut base; melinjo, melinjo leaf, chayote, long beans, aubergine, jackfruit and tempeh. Each has a symbolic meaning based on the sound of its syllable, and the belief that each helps to ward off misfortune.

10. Gudeg

Gudeg is a typical Indonesian food that has long been associated with Yogyakarta and Central Java. It is made from young jackfruit (gori) and cooked with coconut milk.

Dry gudeg is very sweet and reddish in color. It is prepared with palm sugar and a lot of coconut milk.

It is boiled for hours in an earthen pot and spices are added to the mix. These include garlic, onion, candlenut, coriander seed, galangal, bay leaves and teak leaves.

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