Slovenia Foodie Guide
Slovenia is the only European country connecting the Alps, the Pannonian Plain, the Karst, and the Mediterranean. Its exceptionally diverse landscape and a mix of influences from Italy, Austria, and the Balkans are reflected in a colourful culture and gastronomy. Despite Slovenia being such a small country, it offers a wide variety of traditional dishes with one thing in common – they are made out of locally grown ingredients. Here are some of the most delicious culinary specialties you can taste on our Slovenia hiking tours and Slovenia bike tours.
Idrija stuffed dumplings
Idrija stuffed dumplings or žlikrofi are little pasta pockets filled with potato, bacon, onions, and spices. They are cooked in water and served as a warm appetizer, side dish, or one-course meal. Local housewives used to cook žlikrofi for their husbands who worked in a nearby mine. In 2010, Idrija dumplings were officially protected by a geographical origin as the first Slovenian specialty. You can try the tasty dumplings on the amazing Trans Slovenia 02 mountain bike tour, one of our Slovenia bike tours, which runs through Idrija.
Carniolan sausage is the most famous Slovenian food. Just like žlikrofi, Carniolan sausage is also protected by a geographical mark and can only be produced by certified manufacturers. It originates in the Gorenjska region but can be found all across the country. Only the best pork meat and hard bacon are used to make the sausage, to which salt, pepper, and garlic are added. According to the folk tradition, it is served warm with sauerkraut or sour turnip or cold with a bread roll, mustard, grated horseradish, and a mug of beer. This combination tastes even better after finishing one of the stages on our Slovenia hiking tours or Slovenia bike tours that run through the Alpine Slovenia.
Cottage cheese rolled dumplings
Štruklji are a must-try when visiting Slovenia. Well-known all over the country, these tasty dumplings are made of different kinds of dough and over 100 different sweet and savory fillings, with the most popular being cottage cheese. Štruklji are often made for festive occasions. They are prepared by either boiling, baking, frying, or steaming, and served as a side dish for meat and sauces, or a dessert. The rumour has it that the best štruklji in Slovenia can be found on Kofce mountain pasture, which you can visit on our Trans Slovenia 03 mountain bike tour or any of our tailor-made Slovenia hiking tours and Slovenia bike tours.
In Soča Valley there are many places, where traditional pastoral activities are still present. We are huge fans of alpine dairy farms under the Tolmin mountains, where the famous Tolminc cheese is produced. It is a type of hard full-fat cheese made of raw cow’s milk. Due to its excellent baking characteristics, it has become increasingly popular in the creation of new dishes. Fortunately, many of our Slovenia hiking tours and Slovenia bike tours lead through the beautiful Soča Valley, giving you the opportunity to taste home-made Tolminc cheese. The Walk of Peace hiking tour, for example, passes by several dairy farms, where one can enjoy tasting the Tolminc or its rival from Bovec, which has a distinctive aromatic, slightly spicy taste and is mostly made of pure sheep milk.
In Slovenia, cold cuts are popular appetizers and Karst prosciutto is definitely a local favourite. Another geographically protected meat product is a pork thigh that dries in the Karst bora wind. Its specialty lies in the centuries-old tradition of salting and drying. The prosciutto is praised for its rich aroma, intense ruby colour, juiciness, firm structure, and salinity. It is known in local villages that Karst prosciutto mixes best with a glass of local Teran wine. Our Trans Slovenia bike tours invite cyclers to test this theory.
Mush or žganci is one of the simplest and most widespread Slovenian dishes, particularly when made from buckwheat flour and served with pork cracklings. This traditional food can also be paired with sour milk, mushroom soup, sauerkraut, or chicken stew. Mush is especially popular in mountain huts, as it gives your body lots of energy needed for hiking and biking. While žganci are offered in restaurants, mountain huts and tourist farms found on all of our Slovenian hiking tours and Slovenia bike tours, we recommend you to try them in Pohorje mountains near Maribor, where they are made from potatoes and cornflour and poured over with milk or even white coffee.
Bled cream cake
Bled cream cake, locally known as kremšnita, is a specialty of Bled. It was invented in 1953 in Hotel Park, where, until today, over 20 million cream slices have already been sold. The legendary cake consists of three different layers – butter dough crust, vanilla cream, and whipping cream. As locals would surely tell you – you cannot truly experience the beauty of Lake Bled, its island, and castle, without trying the famous kremšnita. Bike Slovenia Green is one of our Slovenia bike tours that take you to Bled and invites you to discover its magic through all senses.