From hearty main courses like beef goulash and potato pancakes to flavour-packed snacks such as pierogi, Poland boasts a delectable menu of national dishes, and Krakow is a fantastic destination for sampling them all. The city has recently garnered a strong culinary reputation after being named the European Capital of Gastronomic Culture 2019, and its tasty line-up of classic Polish food is no doubt a big contributing factor. Further to Poland’s signature foodie favourites, Krakow is also the country’s leading street food destination with a large number of squares, courtyards and public spaces dedicated to street food vendors. So whether you’re craving a plate full of pierogi or a sandwich filled with pulled pork and pickles, read on to discover where to find the best Polish food in Krakow.
Polish food in Krakow contents:
Best Polish restaurants in Krakow
With a large number of restaurants to choose from, there are plenty of opportunities to sample traditional Polish food in Krakow, but it’s important to book in at a good restaurant in order to enjoy the cuisine at its finest. So, read on to discover the best Polish restaurants in Krakow, all of which are guaranteed to serve a delicious and authentic meal.
Kuchnia Polska Gaska
Serving traditional Polish cuisine in a warm, homely setting, Kuchnia Polska Gaska is one of the best Polish restaurants in Krakow. ‘Gaska’ translates into ‘goose’ in English, and the restaurant lives up to its name with a flavoursome menu of Polish dishes made with goose. The goose-stuffed pierogi is served with parsley garlic butter and sour cream while the goose leg served with roast potatoes and caramelised beetroot makes for an indulgent main course. Further traditional Polish dishes on the menu include beer-marinated pork knuckle, hearty beef goulash and crispy potato pancakes. The restaurant can be found next to the picturesque Podgorski Market Square – home to the majestic St. Joseph’s Church – so it’s a great option for diners looking to venture away from the old town. Exposed brick walls, white wood furniture and chintzy floral accents create a charming backdrop while the reasonable prices are a pleasant surprise given the wonderful food and friendly service.
Kuchnia u Doroty
Kuchnia u Doroty is also one of the best places to find Polish food in Krakow with a menu of tasty and affordable traditional dishes. Popular favourites like pierogi, beef goulash, potato pancakes and roast pork are all available along with beef stroganoff, Polish sausage and traditional soups such as beetroot and dumpling soup and zurek soup – a rich dish made of soured rye flour and smoked meat. The restaurant has a relaxed, casual atmosphere and a stripped back decor featuring exposed brickwork and dark wood furnishings. The reasonable prices make it an affordable place to dine while the central location – in the heart of Krakow’s Jewish quarter, Kazimierz – means it’s incredibly convenient for most holidaymakers.
Providing a more fine dining approach to Polish cuisine, Pod Aniołami puts a contemporary spin on traditional Polish food. Located on the busy Royal Route, the restaurant is set across several distinct dining rooms and boasts beautiful 13th-century interiors. On the first floor, guests can dine among glistening chandeliers and vibrant frescoes while the underground cellars offer a cosier atmosphere with historic stonework and bistro furnishings placed under low arched ceilings. Recognisable Polish dishes such as pierogi and grilled pork knuckle do feature on the menu, but classic elements like horseradish, beetroot and red cabbage are predominantly intertwined into refined, modern dishes such as pork loin with baked apple and horseradish, grilled duck with red cabbage and cranberries, and saddle of lamb with rosemary and baked beetroot.
Best pierogi in Krakow
One of Poland’s most popular national dishes, pierogi is ubiquitous on Krakow’s restaurant scene with nearly every establishment serving their take on the moreish dumplings. Most restaurants serve at least one sweet and one savoury option with everything from beef mince and onion to blueberries and sour cream used as a filling. Discover where to find the best pierogi in Krakow:
With seven different fillings to choose from, Barfly is a fantastic spot for those hoping to sample several varieties of pierogi. Savoury options include cheese and potato, beef mince and onion, and spinach and feta cheese. Those with a sweet tooth, meanwhile, can choose between strawberries or blueberries with sour cream and sweet cheese. Barfly is also extremely good value with 10 dumplings costing just 18 PLN, and the venue’s location, in the Jewish district of Kazimierz, places it in one of the most characterful neighbourhoods in the city.
Kuchnia Polska Gaska
This cosy Polish restaurant specialises in dishes centred around goose, and the pierogi is no exception. Filled with succulent minced goose and served with parsley garlic butter, sour cream and cherry tomatoes, they’re a delicious, more refined alternative to the minced beef pierogi found on most restaurant menus. Diners can also opt for the Russian dumplings, served with onion and sour cream, or a sweet alternative that comes with cottage cheese and fruit.
Upmarket restaurant Pod Aniołami is another establishment putting a fine-dining spin on the classic pierogi. Indulgent ingredients such as venison, sheep cheese, brown buttered onions, and a selection of mixed meats are used as fillings while a thin, slightly crispy coating and a crispy onion and chive topping add a delicate finishing touch.
Best Polish street food in Krakow
Further to traditional Polish food such as pierogi and potato pancakes, Krakow is renowned for its pioneering street food scene. Tucking into a zapiekanki (an open-face pizza-like sandwich) at Plac Nowy is practically a rite of passage when visiting the city while a visit to one of the street food parks provides the chance to tuck into contemporary takes on Polish classics. Here’s where to find the best Polish street food in Krakow:
Plac Nowy Square
The bustling Plac Nowy Square is a lively spot filled with bars, restaurants and market stalls, but the most popular reason for visiting is to sample zapiekanki, an open face toasted sandwich often regarded as ‘Polish pizza’. The circular brick building at the centre of the square is home to several zapiekanki traders serving their take on the delicious street food dish. Sauteed mushrooms and melted cheese form the base of a classic zapiekanki and there’s the option of adding further toppings such as crispy onions, spicy sausage and roasted peppers along with a selection of sauces. Each trader offers a different menu of toppings, so it’s worth taking a wander and looking at all of the menu boards to find one that takes your fancy. There aren’t many chairs or tables in the square, so it’s often a case of placing your order from one of the trader’s tiny windows and then tackling the sandwich right there among the crowds. It’s a messy but tasty affair.
Andrus Food Truck
Judah Square Food Truck Park in Krakow’s Kazimierz district is one of the best spots in the city to find tasty street food. Everything from juicy burgers to overloaded jacket potatoes is on offer, but for an authentic Polish experience, head for the sunny yellow Andrus Food Truck. Here you’ll find a modern take on maczanka, Krakow’s signature pulled pork sandwich. The pork is marinated for 48 hours in their signature marinade and then served in a large bread bun alongside pickles and onion. Further to the classic pickle and onion option, there’s also a selection of more adventurous toppings including beetroot and dark chocolate and horseradish and a fried egg.