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15 Kosovo Foods With Easy Recipes

If you stick to a three-meal-a-day plan, your meal schedule and food from Kosovo selections will never deviate much from the norm. In Kosova, regional, religious, and ethnic differences all contribute to a rich tapestry of gastronomic traditions rather than a single, unified one. Kosovans are making efforts to standardize their local cuisine through cookbooks, restaurant menus, television shows, and open discussion.

Meat, stews, baked goods, pickles, and dairy products make up the bulk of the average person’s daily dietary intake. Dishes like fli and tav are constantly held up as paragons of traditional fare. Changes in eating habits and preferences are easier to spot in public eating establishments than in private homes.

The impact of supermarkets stocking both imported and domestic convenience foods is palpable. Farmers’ markets and other small farms are also having an impact on the evolving food from Kosovo recipe scene by popularizing Kosovar cuisine and using buzzwords like “natural,” “local,” “authentic,” and “traditional” in their marketing.

Kosovar Ajvar - 15 Recipes With Food from Kosovo To Try At Home

15 Recipes With Food from Kosovo To Try At Home



1. Pasulj or Grah (Instant Pot Bean Soup with Sausage) from Balkan Lunchbox

1. Pasulj or Grah (Instant Pot Bean Soup with Sausage)

Instant Pot bean stew with sausage (kobasica) is a classic Balkan stew. Also known as pasulj or grah, this hearty and tasty soup is the perfect comfort Kosovo food for cold days. This is a quick, no-soak, no-roux version with the same amazing taste.

These buttery, soft, flavorful gems are a typical winter dish that, when you combine it with fermented cabbage and a slice of steaming homemade bread, takes you right back to your childhood snow days.

Originally this food from Kosovo recipe was made over a fire pit, today’s grah is usually made on the stovetop. As cooking it can take forever, we decided to make an Instant Pot bean soup version. (An upgrade to our pressure cooker Kosovo recipe from before.) However, you can find the stovetop version here as well.

2. Cabbage Koshimbir from BBC Good Food

2. Cabbage Koshimbir

Try a healthy accompaniment to tandoori dishes or barbecued meats. Koshimbir is an Indian slaw or crunchy cabbage salad where the chili is optional. Think of this as a slaw or crunchy cabbage salad.

3. Elbasan Tava from Turkish Style Cooking

3. Elbasan Tava - Food from Kosovo

“Tava is a traditional Kosovo and Cyprus peasant dish usually made with lamb or mutton. I have changed the Kosovo recipe slightly and used chicken instead. I think it’s much lighter and is nice even on a hot day.”

4. Beef & Sausage Stuffed Peppers from Global Table Adventure

4. Beef & Sausage Stuffed Peppers

I love presents. Surprises. Happy faces. So does my daughter. Imagine her ecstatic two-year old delight, then, when her dinner was a lidded present filled with a bounty of rice, sausage and beef? But the real surprise wasn’t her reaction – it was Keith’s.

My very own Mr. Picky has been asking for stuffed peppers ever since I made them last week. Who knew this man would fall so hard for a simple stuffed pepper. Who knew he’d be so easy to please. He’s right, though. And, for the record, so is Kosovo – the lovely country that inspired this dish.

So pull up a chair. Today we’re feasting on food from Kosovo. Festival fall food. This Kosovo recipe is beloved in Kosovo where peppers, tomatoes and eggplants are all stuffed. Feel free to add your favorite herbs. Once you try it, you’ll be hooked.

5. Kosovo Sallate from International Cuisine

5. Kosovo Sallate

Kosovo Sallate is a delicious citrus salad food from Kosovo that is light and refreshing. It has both sweet oranges and tangy lemon, it is then combined with some white brined cheese and hard boiled eggs. Topped with salty brined black olives along with some fresh mint. The whole salad is then drizzled with a good extra virgin olive oil. The result is a burst of flavors for all the senses in every bite. I loved this Kosovo food and I will make it often, I hope you do too.

6. Flija from Global Table Adventure

6. Flija - Food from Kosovo

Flija is traditionally a very plain large bread/cake slowly cooked outside near a campfire with loads of family and friends around. The campfire is used to heat a special lid covered in charcoal, which is actually what cooks the flija. I could go into a long complicated explanation, but the best thing for you to do is witness the wonderfulness here.

7. Kosovo Pitalke from International Cuisine

7. Kosovo Pitalke

Kosovo Pitalke is a soft pillowy bread food from Kosovo that comes from the Prizren region. It is delicious right out of the oven and topped with the roasted pepper spread called avjar. This is a simple Kosovo recipe and the results are super. This bread would be lovely with just about any topping. Enjoy

8. Pita Zeljanica (Savory Pie With Spinach) from Chasing the Donkey

8. Pita Zeljanica (Savory Pie With Spinach)

All the variations of burek have their origins in Turkey, and the same is said for this savory spinach pie. Without a doubt, pita (or burek, that’s what you like to call it) is a favorite of those in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia and Kosovo.

“Pita zeljanica” instantly takes me back to my childhood because my grandmother used to make the best Kosovo food in the world.

She would often ask me: “What would you like Grandma to make for you?!” And my answer was always: “Zeljanicu!” That’s how much I savor this dish.


Want more ideas to round-out your Recipe Box?
A lot of great options are in these posts!


9. Kosovar Ajvar (Red Bell Pepper & Eggplant Spread) from Farm To Jar

9. Kosovar Ajvar (Red Bell Pepper & Eggplant Spread)

Ajvar is a red pepper eggplant spread that is a popular food from Kosovo. This Kosovo recipe is a particularly robust version enhanced with a Peruvian hot spice. The video that accompanies the recipe also demonstrates a quick and easy way to roast and peel peppers.

This traditional food from Kosovo use a pepper known as Red Bull’s Horn Pepper. Red Bull’s Horn is a sweet pepper that got its name from its shape. This particular pepper is not readily available in many US grocery stores however, so we opted for sweet red “bell” peppers.

10. Kosovo Tavë Kosi from International Cuisine

10. Kosovo Tavë Kosi

Kosovo Tavë Kosi is a delicious baked lamb dish with rice and yogurt. The lamb is first cooked with garlic and rice and then seasoned with oregano. The dish is smothered in a yogurt egg mixture that turns golden brown and souffle-like in the oven. The result is almost like a shepherds pie. It is light however and has a tartness from the yogurt. A Kosovo food lovely main dish for any occasion. The dish originated in Albania. Enjoy!

11. Kosovo Style Rice Pudding from Recipe Dictionary

11. Kosovo Style Rice Pudding

This is it: the classic food from Kosovo, creamy stovetop rice pudding recipe. Simmer raw rice with milk and brown sugar, then finish with cinnamon, vanilla, and raisins. It’s like a hug in a bowl.

This Kosovo recipe calls for short-grain white rice, but let’s say you don’t have that on hand. In general, the shorter the grain, the higher the starch content…and it’s starch that helps thicken this pudding and make it so creamy. You can use brown rice, but the pudding won’t be as creamy, it will take longer to cook, and you will likely need to add more liquid.

12. Flija aus dem Kosovo from Chef Koch

12. Flija aus dem Kosovo

If you have a lot of time on a rainy afternoon or on a weekend, we have a real Kosovar insider tip for you: a food from Kosovo called a Flija . One of the traditional specialties from Kosovo is Flija, which is made from flour, water and salt.

The layered dough, placed on a cake pan, is covered with a “saç” – a metal dome over which hot ash is placed to bake the dough. The process is long, but the results are delicious!

13. Sarma from Taste Atlas

13. Sarma - Food from Kosovo

You can’t leave Pristina without trying the food from Kosovo known as a Sarma. They look like adorable cocoons but are really a mixture of minced meat, veggies, and rice rolled in cabbage leaves or vine leaves.

It is a very versatile dish, with many variations created across the centuries. A filling typically made with minced meat and rice, barley, or bulgur is wrapped in grape leaves, cabbage, chard, or monk’s rhubarb. Turkish recipes use lamb or beef, while European versions often incorporate pork as well, seasoned with onion, garlic, and spices.

After stuffing, the rolls are simmered, baked, or steamed in a lidded pot. The dish is usually served warm, with mashed potatoes and bread. It is especially popular in the winter months as a lunch or dinner and is commonly served during the holidays and for special occasions.

14. Baklava from Chasing The Donkey

14. Baklava - Food from Kosovo

A decadent Balkan dessert made with layers of filo pastry and nuts and drenched with syrup or honey. Rich in flavor, juicy and sweet, a real calorie bomb that is hard to resist – baklava. Found all over the Balkans, especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina, baklava is one of the most popular desserts found in party shops and kitchen tables.

The history of baklava is somehow complicated as there is no specific written evidence of its origins. It is believed to originate from Armenia, but due to numerous variations, some people say that baklava originates from Arabia and Greece others that it began as a food from Kosovo or at that region.

15. Djuveç from Ela Vegan

15. Djuveç - Food from Kosovo

Djuvec is a dish made of meat with vegetables like Kosovo tomato, olives, mushrooms, onions, and spices baked in earthenware pots. This dish is popular in Southeast Europe (including Kosovo, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, and other Balkan countries). It’s also extremely popular in Germany and Austria – though it doesn’t have any German or Austrian origins.

This food from Kosovo recipe for Djuvec rice is a simple, healthy, and super customizable veggie and flavor-packed side dish or main. Serve alongside a mid-week meal or at parties, potlucks, and BBQ’s. Plus, this vegetable rice recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, low fat, vegan, and uses just one pot!


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