When people think of Canada, some of the first things which usually come to mind are mountains, snow, skiing and boarding, bears (grizzlies and polar), eagles, salmon, other amazing animals, Mounties, music and comedy festivals, amazing train trips, French speakers, and Niagara Falls.
However, Canada is also a destination fit for foodies. This vast country is the perfect place to try out a wide variety of interesting and tasty cuisines that you can tick off your bucket list.
If you’re not too worried about your cholesterol levels, poutine should be on your list to try when in Canada. This savory dish certainly isn’t low on kilojoules, but it’s high on flavor. Poutine is Canada’s special version of loaded fries.
Order this in a restaurant and you’ll receive a serving of fries that have been given extra toppings by way of gravy and chewy cheese curds. This step adds texture and taste and is filling to boot. Some poutine dishes are further enhanced, too. Fancy establishments add foie gras or black truffles, while the mashup can also sometimes involve bacon or other meats.
Are you more of a sweet tooth? If so, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn what beavertails are. Sounding unappetizing and more like a meat dish, beavertails are actually a type of sweet Canadian pastry.
The name comes from the fact that the treats, made from dough balls, are created in the shape of a beaver’s tail. This pastry is fried then topped with a variety of options. Often beavertails have fruit or chocolate on top, or sometimes whole candy bars, popcorn or other extras are added.
If it’s dessert wines you can’t get enough of, don’t worry, Canada also delivers. The country boasts the famous Canadian Icewine, that’s exported around the world. In particular, if you’re keen to go on a Niagara Falls foodie vacation, you’ll find the area of Niagara-on-the-Lake and nearby suburbs are just the place to taste test and stock up on Icewine.
Icewine is a unique dessert wine made from grapes frozen on the vine during winter. It has an intense, sweet flavor that pairs perfectly with after-dinner treats (or it’s delectable by itself too). Inniskillin Winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake is one of the most popular places for tourists to try Icewine. When you’re in Niagara Falls fit in a trip to this winery that is only about a 20-minute drive from the center of town.
Another treat for those with a sweet tooth is the iconic Nanaimo Bar. A slice that originated in Canada (named after the British Columbian city of Nanaimo), it’s now consumed across the globe. The no-bake dessert features three layers. It’s made in a bar shape and sliced into easy-eating pieces.
The layers include a graham-cracker crumb base, a vanilla-custard-tasting middle section, and a topping of chocolate icing or ganache. The bars are placed in the fridge to harden and consumed while still cool. Some people make variations of the slice, too. Peanut butter and mint are two of the most popular ones.
Bannock seems to conjure the image of fish or a meat dish perhaps, but in fact, this Canadian cuisine is a bread-based delicacy. Bannock is sold in many restaurants and bakeries around Canada. It’s often made over an open fire by campers, too. The name comes from a traditional Scottish flat bread.
Bannock is a versatile griddled bread choice used as a replacement for standard bread. Around Canada, you may find it served as the base for a gourmet sandwich, or the holder for a hot dog or burger. It can also be converted into a sweet dish when given toppings or fillings like icing or sugar.
Pure Maple Syrup
No vacation in Canada is complete without sampling some of the country’s most famous foodie export – fresh, pure maple syrup. You don’t have to go far to find maple syrup products, either. Everywhere you look there are maple-flavored items like toffees, doughnuts, and other candies, plus you can have the fresh sticky goodness poured over your waffles, French toast, pancakes or other foods.
As you can see, visitors to Canada have a raft of food and beverage choices that will make their taste buds happy. Try to spend enough time in the country to enjoy them all!