Indulge In the Flavors of Bali
After a long day of exploring some of the best things to do in Bali, you’ll probably be starving. Bali has certain foods that you can find in other parts of Indonesia but it can be very different. The main difference between Indonesian and Balinese food is the ingredients and spices that are used to prepare the dishes. There is a large population of Muslims in Indonesia but not in Bali. Since Muslims cannot eat pork, you will see more pork dishes in Bali.
There are so many foods you must eat in Bali but this article might be too long if we list all of it. This guide includes some traditional and authentic dishes you must eat in Bali along with some street foods and desserts. As you read this guide, you might learn a bit of Indonesian vocabulary as well.
I know you are hungry so here are 10 Foods You Must Eat in Bali:
1. Babi Guling- Suckling Pig
The most famous food in Bali
Babi guling, or suckling pig, is one of Bali’s most famous dishes. It is very unlikely to find this dish outside of Bali since a majority of the population in Indonesia are Muslim. Babi guling literally translates to “turning pig” since it is hand turned on an open fire. In the past, babi guling was only served in religious ceremonies or huge celebrations but due to the increase in tourism, you can find it many restaurants now.
The most popular place to eat babi guling is at Ibu Oka in Ubud. This restaurant was made popular by the celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain. This restaurant is so popular they decided to open 2 other locations. Many people love Ibu Oka, however, it is usually packed with tourists and is a bit more expensive.
2. Gado Gado- Indonesian Salad
A dish that is will suit everyone’s taste buds
Gado gado is a must try food if you are vegetarian. You can substitute almost any Balinese dish for a vegetarian option, however, this is a dish everyone will love. This Indonesian salad has tempeh, tofu, cucumbers, bean sprout, kidney beans, and sometimes eggs. This is topped with a special peanut sauce dressing that makes the salad a little sweet, salty, and spicy.
3. Mie Goreng- Stir Fried Noodles
A staple Indonesian food
Mie goreng, or stir fried noodles, is a very common dish in Indonesia. It is a very flavorful dish with a hint of spice. This dish is influenced by the Chinese dish chow mein, which is why it may look familiar. Mie goreng is traditionally made out of egg noodles, soy sauce, vegetables, and a variety of meat.
Since mie goreng is loved by everyone, it even inspired creators to make an instant ramen called Indomie. This dish often cooked in every household and is very easy to make. You might crave for this delicious dish after you leave Bali so why not learn how to make it?
4. Sate- Skewer
Eat barbequed meat on a stick
Sate, also written as satay, is a popular street food in Bali. You can often find vendors selling it from smokey carts almost everywhere. Types of Balinese sate include chicken, beef, goat, and rabbit. You can find this popular food almost everywhere but there are certain types of sate that can only be found in ceremonies.
Although it is a common street food, you can also find this in many restaurants. If you are in the Kuta area, a good restaurant that you should visit is Gourmet Sate House. They have a good variety of sate that is very affordable!
Address: Jl. Dewi Sri No.101, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
5. Pepes Ikan- Steamed Fish in Banana Leaf
Eat an authentic dish that is prepared traditionally
Pepes ikan is a whole marinated fish that is wrapped in a banana leaf and steamed. This is an authentic dish you must try in Bali. Although Balinese cuisine is more known for their meat dishes, people in Bali are also great at cooking fish!
The way this dish is prepared really allows the fish to absorb all the flavors from the spices. Pepes ikan can be made with any fish but the most common fish that is used for this dish is mackerel, sardines, and snapper.
6. Laklak- Balinese Cake
Eat cakes for breakfast
Laklak is a sweet traditional Balinese cake that is made out of rice flour. It usually comes in two colors, white and green. Pandan leaves are used to give it a green color and a light aroma. Laklak is often eaten for breakfast but it is also a great snack that can be eaten any time of the day.
Laklak is hard to find in big cities but it can be found in traditional markets around the island. Don’t forget to try these bite-size cakes that everyone love.
7. Nasi Campur- Mixed Rice
Sample different Balinese foods in one dish
The word campur translates to mix in English. Nasi campur is a dish that comes with a scoop of rice and a mixture of small portioned side dishes. Some side dishes include tofu, tempeh, fish, and meat. You’ll get to sample some of the best foods from this local dish. You can find nasi campur in other parts of Indonesia as well but what makes nasi campur in Bali distinctive is the typical spices that are used in many Balinese dishes.
Balinese food is known to be very flavorful but depending on where you go the nasi campur can be bland. A popular place to eat is in Kuta at a restaurant called Nook. This restaurant is very popular amongst foreigners since there are many foreign foods on the menu and it is in English. Although it is target towards foreigners, the food is still very good.
Address: Jl. Umalas 1 Gang Nook No. 1, Kuta Utara, Kerobokan Kelod, Kuta Utara, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
8. Es Campur- Shaved Ice
Cool yourself down with a refreshing dessert
Es campur is a shaved ice dessert that has a mixture of toppings. Common toppings that you will find are grass jelly, basil seeds, nata de coco, and avocado. The ingredients are mixed into coconut milk and topped with condensed milk for extra sweetness.
This colorful and refreshing dessert is perfect for the hot and humid weather so be sure to try it out when you’re in Bali. You can find es campur everywhere from street vendors to fancy restaurants. No matter where you get it, es campur will cool you down and satisfy your sweet tooth.
9. Bubur Sumsum- Black Rice Pudding
by Cook Pad
A sweet and salty dessert
There are so many foods you must try in Bali and this is no exception! Bubur sumsum is often served as a traditional dessert but can also be eaten for breakfast or as a snack. This dessert is mainly made out of coconut milk, rice flour, and topped with palm sugar syrup. Sweet potato dumplings are sometimes served with bubur sumsum.
This dessert is very simple to make, however, might require a little bit of practice to get the correct consistency. You can learn how to make this delicious dessert by taking a cooking class in Bali.
10. Pisang Goreng- Fried Bananas
Bali’s version of banana fritters
Goreng means fried in Indonesian. Pisang goreng is a deep fried banana that is covered in batter. It is a very popular snack that can be found throughout Indonesia and other parts of Southeast Asia. Many street vendors sell this on its own but you can also find it at restaurants or cafes.
It is absolutely delicious to eat pisang goreng with ice cream even though it is not a traditional way to eat it. This treat is so good you will want more.
This is it…
These were the top 10 Foods You Must Eat in Bali, hope this made you hungry. You can actually learn how to make most of these dishes in a cooking class.
If you’re interested in a booking one, here’s all the amazing experiences we have available: