Six Very Dutch Dishes to Try in Amsterdam

Kerti Kulper • 24 Feb, 2018

Amsterdam is known for its notorious Red Light District and fun coffee shops, but it also offers dishes that are typical of the Netherlands. Here are six Dutch dishes that you can enjoy in Amsterdam.

1. Patatje oorlog

Patatje oorlog means “war fries”. They’re essentially French fries topped with mayonnaise, raw onions and special sate sauce. The sauce is of Indonesian origin and is made with ground peanuts, ginger, turmeric and many other spices.


Photo credit: Ronaldo Quercia

2. Poffertjes

Poffertjes are tiny pancakes that the Dutch love to eat as treats. They’re usually served with powdered sugar and butter, but you can eat them with syrup, whipped cream and strawberries too. During the colder months it’s very common to see temporary stands selling these tiny treats.

Photo credit: Mira Pangkey 

3. Broodje haring

Broodje haring means “raw herring sandwich”, and the Dutch love it so much that it has become a national dish of the Netherlands. The fish is usually topped with raw onion and pickles.


Photo credit: Martijn van Exel

4. Stamppot

Stamppot is a very traditional Dutch dish of mashed potatoes and other vegetables typically served with a juicy sauce. You can find it at shops and supermarkets, as well as at restaurants and cafés. Stamppotje is probably the best place to try this dish in Amsterdam – you can get a very small portion for just 90 cents (if it’s your first time trying it, it’s wise to start small).


Photo credit: Martijn van Exel

5. Bitterballen

Bitterballen are tiny Dutch meatballs made with minced beef or veal, broth, butter, flour and parsley. The mixture is seasoned with salt, pepper and sometimes nutmeg. Bitterballen are served with mustard or dipping sauce and eaten as a savoury snack.

14247129865_9663cc838d_kPhoto credit: Franklin Heijnen 

6. Stroopwaffels

You can find these super sweet waffles at every supermarket, street vendor and café in the Netherlands (the same goes for Belgium). They’re basically syrup waffles that smell heavenly. Enjoy them with a cup of coffee.


Photo credit: Sindy

For more local recommendations read:
What locals like to do in Amsterdam
Where locals like to eat in Amsterdam
Where locals like to party in Amsterdam

Special tip:
For a more authentic Amsterdam experience, get the Like A Local mobile app

Kerti Kulper
Freelance translator and editor at an online women's magazine. A Tallinn gal who previously resided in Helsinki, Brussels and Tartu.


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    I was born in the Netherlands in the town of Apeldoorn. Seeing all these dishes bring back so many memories! I'm glad many of these I have introduced to my children who also love them! Thanks for the happy memories!!
    John vanKeeken • Sep 24, 2019 • Reply
    Stroopwaffels are so cute it's hard to eat more than two. But there are great :) Just a second dish, which I tried, but in Germany called differently. You called it something else.
    Alex - bus tour krakow • Mar 06, 2017 • Reply
    Danke !vielen Dank!
    Ehsan • Jul 04, 2016 • Reply
    Thanks for the clarification, Enric!
    Jessica Braz • Feb 26, 2016 • Reply
    "Patatjesoorlog" means actually "War of the fries" And it does not refer to the fries but to the mix of sauces. You can actually get each of them alone and most people eat them "Belgian (vlaams)" style, with onions and mayo.
    Enric • Feb 25, 2016 • Reply