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The Top 20 Traditional Slovak Recipes To Cook At Home

Slovak Food Review - 5 Things to try in Bratislava, Slovakia

The Top 20 Traditional Slovak Recipes To Cook At Home

These days, you can find food and traditional Slovak recipes from all over the world, thanks to those who left their home country searching for new opportunities and the cooking skills they brought with them.

Jump to 5 Popular food from Slovakia
Jump to 5 Frequently Asked Questions About food from Slovakia
Jump to The Top 20 Traditional Slovak Recipes To Cook At Home

Whether its sauerkraut that reminds you of home or one of the many other traditional Slovak food you love, there is no shortage of hearty, flavorful meals awaiting your taste buds. So what’s so unique about traditional Slovak recipes?

Well, traditional Slovak recipes are heavily influenced by the country’s Central European location and history. In fact, many of the dishes we now call Slovak came over with Slovak immigrants who settled in the area, particularly in northern and northeastern Pennsylvania, which has been known as the Slovak Strip since the late 19th century.

Some influencers of traditional Slovak recipes include Czech, Hungarian, and Austrian foods. As a result, you’ll see ingredients such as sauerkraut, milk products, potatoes, pork meat, or onion sprinkled on most menus. The combination of different ingredients makes Slovak food so delicious but also difficult to compare to cuisines from elsewhere.

No matter where you go, though, one thing is for sure--you’ll love it. So the best way to truly appreciate the flavor of traditional Slovak recipes is to get right into it and start try some of the at home. If you’re looking to learn more about the Slovak food and popular cuisine, listed below are five must-try dishes from this Central European country that are bound to satisfy your taste buds.

Sour Mushroom Soup (Slovak Machanka)

 

5 Popular food from Slovakia

1. Bryndzové Halušky (potato dumplings)

Containing more sheep’s cheese, the traditional Slovak recipes for these potato dumplings are one of the most popular dishes in Slovakia and a perfect example of how diverse the cuisine can be. They come with fried bacon bits, which gives them a distinct flavor that makes them perfect for breakfast or lunch. They also contain sour cream, which adds a tangy taste to the dish.

2. Bryndzové Haluscaron (sheep’s cheese gnocchi)

You may think the recipes for gnocchi is Italian at first glance, but it actually originated in Central Europe centuries ago. Traditional Slovak hood has its own version called Bryndzové Haluscaron, which is dough made from mashed potatoes mixed with sheep’s cheese that has been boiled like pasta. It sounds bizarre on paper, but when you actually try it, you realize what a delicacy this is.

3. Slovkia Buchty

This traditional Slovak recipes is made of soft dough plus rum-spiced plum jam that is then fried until golden brown. Vanilla-based sauce, melted butter, or poppy seeds make good toppings. Buchty is best served hot as an appetizer, so your stomach will be ready to take on some of the heavier dishes.

4. Kapustnica

This traditional Slovak recipes for this soup was created from meat and sauerkraut dating back to the 15th century. The word kapusta means cabbage, and nica means stew. What you’ll love about kapustnica is the way it manages to keep its balance between saltiness and sweetness. It also includes other ingredients such as mushrooms, sausages, pork, and other spices, making it hearty enough to fill you up.

5. Halukys Kyslou Kapustou

Another great Slovak food you’d want to try is the Bryndzové Haluscaron, a plate of delicious dumplings filled with sour cream and bryndra (cheese) cooked with sauerkraut. The smoked pork meat and fried bacon can be topped to give the dish even more character.

5 Frequently Asked Questions About Food From Slovakia

What is a Slovak national dish that visitors must try when visiting your country?

Bryndzové Haluscaron is the Slovak national food that everyone must try when visiting Slovakia. This Dumplings with sheep’s cheese are a Slovak food favorite and one you will not want to miss. It is made of dumpling dough, stuffed with fried bacon and onions, and topped with crispy fried onion rings.

Can you get vegan dishes in Slovakian restaurants?

Most Slovakian restaurants don’t offer many vegan choices except for salads. Traditional Slovak recipes for salads are usually made with a lot of mayonnaise and often include ham, bacon, eggs, or chicken as ingredients. However, some salad recipes without meat are known to exist, such as Kapustnica (cabbage soup), Bryndzové Halušky (potato soup), or Souvlaki or Spinach

What time do people eat dinner in Slovakia?

People in Slovakia eat dinner by 6:00 p.m. The night begins with eating a salad, soup, or fish dish to cleanse the palate before tasting other dishes. A typical menu might be soup, a main course of meatballs or fish, dumplings, and potatoes.

What is the national drink of Slovenia?

Schnapps is the national drink of Slovakia. It’s made of fermented fruit like cherries, apples, plums, and sugar. This combination makes for a sweet liqueur that can be found in several varieties with different tastes depending on the fruit used.

What do Slovakians eat for breakfast?

Breakfast choice for Slovak food include bread with ham, boiled or fried eggs, vegetables, butter, cheese, salami, and sausages add to a hearty morning meal. The best thing about this breakfast is that it is completely customizable. You can eat anything you want if you have the base ingredients, like bread and eggs.

The Top 20 Traditional Slovak Recipes To Cook At Home

1. Bramboracky (Czech Savory Potato Pancakes)

traditional slovak recipes - Bramboracky (Czech Savory Potato Pancakes) (1)

Bramboracky (bram-bor-atch-key) is a traditional Slovak recipe for pan-fried potato pancakes best accompanied by beer. This is a Slovak food that my Czech boyfriend and I have fun with often. Potato pancakes are commonly associated with traditional Czech, Ukrainian, Yiddish, German, Hungarian and Polish cuisines, although other cuisines (including those of India and Korea) also have similar potato pancakes.

2. Kapustnica

traditional slovak recipes - Kapustnica

I learned about this traditional Slovak recipe for a delicious soup when visiting a friend in Slovakia! This Slovak soup is usually made around Christmas and winter time in Slovakia but is great for any day if you ask me. It’s made with sauerkraut, smoked ham hock, sausage, mushrooms and flavorful spices like caraway and paprika for a unique Slovak food. Spices will vary depending on the family. Even if you can’t find some ingredients like the ham/sausage, you can probably get a similar flavor with appropriate substitutions.

3. Blueberry Bublanina | Bubbly Cake

traditional slovak recipes - Blueberry Bublanina Bubbly Cake

When there is more fruit than can be gathered in an apron, Slovakia makes Bublanina, a.k.a. Bubbly Cake.

Just one secret makes this traditional Slovak recipe for a slightly sweet cake light and fluffy: whipped egg whites. Fruit, sliced, chunked, or left whole, is scattered across the foamy surface and, as the cake puffs up in the oven, it bubbles around the fruit.

Some fruit sinks down. Once out of the oven, the whole thing is covered with a cloud of powdered sugar, until even the air around it tastes sweet.

4. Letcho

Letcho traditional slovak recipe

Letcho is a very flavorful traditional Slovak recipe for a dish served over rice. Its easy, filling and a great comfort food my whole family enjoys – especially my daughter Natasha.

I used to eat letcho (lecso) almost every Saturday during summer when I was a kid. I liked the taste of the cooked veggies and especially sausages or bacon which my mum added into it.  On the other hand, I never liked the tomatoes and especially the tomato skin. This changed only a few years back when I started to make letcho at home.

The recipe for quick Slovak food called letcho below is my most favorite version. I know that you can make other kinds of letcho too, but this one is the closest to the very traditional Hungarian one and the one I used to eat in my childhood.

5. Pogacha (Pogača): Traditional Balkan Bread Without Yeast

Pogacha (Pogača) Traditional Balkan Bread Without Yeast

Pogacha (pogača) is a traditional bread without yeast. It was once baked daily in every Balkan and Central European home. There are as many ways to prepare pogacha as there are stars in the sky. Here’s an easy, mouth-watering version.

There are many traditional Slovak recipes for differnt types of pogacha. There is the Christmas kind (e.g. česnica or Božićna pogača). And also the flower looking kind (e.g. rose or ruža pogača).

Today’s Slovak recipe is for the everyday kind. Slightly crunchy outside. Incredibly soft inside. And mouth-watering everywhere!

6. Creamy Sauerkraut Stew (Slovak Segedinsky Gulash)

Creamy Sauerkraut Stew (Slovak Segedinsky Gulash)

I’ll have a post with more traditional Slovak recipes for eating sauerkraut soon, right now I have a Slovak food that uses sauerkraut. Sauerkraut in soups or stews was totally new to me when I came to Slovakia, but they quickly became some of my favorites.

Segedinsky gulash (stew from Szegedin) is apparently originally Hungarian, but the Hungarian segedinsky gulash is a different stew, with peppers and no cream. This traditional Slovak recipe is their version of segedinsky gulash.

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7. Chicken Paprikash w Sour Cream Sauce

Chicken Paprikash w Sour Cream Sauce

I really don’t remember my Slovak grandmother doing much cooking but she did have this traditional Slovak recipe. By the time I was old enough to pay attention to who was cooking, she was mostly just making the occasional pot of soup.

My version of Chicken Paprikash is a combination of my mother’s and my Aunt Ann’s. When I went to look up the recipe to make in preparation for this blog I discovered that I had never written it down! Luckily I remembered just how to do it.

8. Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki Sauce

Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki Sauce

Chicken souvlaki skewers are marinated Greek/Slovak kabobs. Fantastic flavor for chicken. The marinade can also be used for pork.

Souvlaki ( skewers / suvlaki / suflaki ) is one of the most popular street foods as well as a very popular Slovak food in Slovakia as well as in Greece, together with the traditional moussaka and for good reason. It’s stuffed with a deliciously marinated and seasoned meat, garnished with a cooling tzatziki sauce, wrapped in a delicious crispy pita and best of all? This Slovak food tastes like heaven!

9. Liptauer (Slovakian Cheese Spread)

Liptauer (Slovakian Cheese Spread) traditional slovak recipe

Liptauer is a traditional Slovak recipe for a seriously addicting, paprika-infused cheese spread that is perfect for game day or a fancy appetizer party, and everything in between. The names comes from the Liptov region of Slovakia. There, this spread is traditionally made with bryndza, a soft, sheep’s milk cheese.

The soft cheese base is blended with butter, to create a creamy and fluffy spread. Seasonings, including a good amount of paprika, capers, and minced onion, give the spread a smoky, salty, and slightly tangy flavor.

10. Czechoslovakian/Slovak Kolache Cookies

CzechoslovakianSlovak Kolache Cookies

These Slovak kolache cookies are made in the traditional manner: a yeast-flavored dough is rolled, cut and filled with fruit preserves for an attractive holiday cookie. Having come across kolachy cookies, I knew I needed to add them to the list for this year’s baking.

This traditional Slovak recipe for Kolachy cookies is typically made from a simple pastry made from cream cheese, butter and flour folded over a little jam filling. Sometimes they have a cheese or nut filling. They go by a few names depending on which language (eg kolaczki, kolache, kolacky) and can be found across Eastern Europe. Some argue they are originally Czech, others say Polish.

11. Bryndzové Halušky

Bryndzové Halušky (1) slovak food

A traditional Slovak recipe for Bryndzové Halušky (Slovak Potato Dumplings with Cheese)! Small potato dumplings are coated in a creamy sheep cheese and served with crisp bacon.

Bryndzové Halušky is one of Slovakia’s most famous dishes. Halušky, little pasta dumplings made from grated potatoes and flour, are coated in a special cheese called Bryndza and topped with bacon.

12. Slovak Haluski

Slovak Haluski slovak food

Often used during Lent, this traditional Slovak recipe is meatless has been passed down generation to generation in my family. The recipe for this Slova food makes a generous amount, which is great because Haluski tastes even better the second day. My Bubba (grandmother) made potato dumpling noodles to go with her cabbage. Also great served with any fish!

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13. Sour Mushroom Soup (Slovak Machanka)

Sour Mushroom Soup (Slovak Machanka)

In the Slovak, Ukrainian, Carpatho-Rusyn Orthodox Christian tradition, sour mushroom soup (machanka or macanka) is a meatless soup served for Christmas Eve Wigilia supper and any time fasting is required, like Advent and Lent. (Wigilia is derived from Latin “vigil” that means wakefulness.)

The traditional Slovak recipe for Wigilia is one of most important foods make for celebrations of the year, both in the old country and here in The Coal Region where many people embrace Christmas Eve traditions celebrated for generations in their families. Wigilia is a meatless meal, no doubt the result of a long-time Church mandate that a strict fast and abstinence be observed on this day before Christmas.

14. Souvlaki

Souvlaki

Souvlaki is a Slovak and Greek specialty made with tender cuts of meat. In this traditional Slovak recipe for pork kebab, the meat is marinated in a lemony olive oil mixture. Serve with rice pilaf and a Greek salad.

This homemade Slovak recipe for chicken souvlaki takes you to the streets of Slovakia and in Greece! Complete with the best souvlaki marinade; instructions for indoor or outdoor grilling; and what to serve with your souvlaki. Be sure to see the video tutorial below.

15. Amazing Recipe Slovak Nut Roll Recipe

Amazing Recipe Slovak Nut Roll Recipe

What is a Slovak nut roll recipe? Essentially, a nut roll is a sweet dough that usually uses milk. With that, you can roll it thinly. And spread it with a paste made from groundnuts and honey. Likewise, you can roll it out like a log.

In addition to that, it resembles a jelly roll but has more layers of dough and filling. This is a simple but tasty traditional Slovak recipe for the nut roll which is a delicious sweet bread with a nutty filling. For that reason, this recipe is popular in Central European cuisines. Not only that, but also you can serve this traditional pastry at weddings, Easter, and Christmas. So with that, share this recipe with your family and friends.

16. Pagach (aka “Pierogi Pizza”)

Pagach (aka “Pierogi Pizza”)

A traditional Slovak recipe for Pagach is made of a filling of mashed potatoes and encased in a bread-like dough (some cooks use cabbage or sauerkraut instead of potatoes as the filling). It originated as a Lenten dish in Slavic regions.

Pagach is popular in Northeastern Pennsylvania (the “Coal Region”) and Southwestern Pennsylvania, areas shaped by the large population of Catholic immigrants from Eastern European countries.

17. Homemade Paska – Slovak Easter Bread

Homemade Paska – Slovak Easter Bread

Growing up in a family rich with Slovak traditions, I came early to love paska as a traditional yeasted Easter bread. I believe it’s also common in other eastern European traditions. I know it based on my Slovak heritage.

My family’s traditional Slovak recipe for paska yields a pretty traditional yeasted bread, enriched with a bit of butter, eggs, and sugar for a sweet, brioche-like flavor perfectly suited to an Easter celebration.

18. Slovak French Potatoes Casserole

Slovak French Potatoes Casserole

Slovak food is sustaining food, food that was meant to support an agricultural lifestyle. It is usually fairly easy to put together and full of energy to power through another day of backbreaking farm work. Slovak French Potatoes are no exception.

As usual, there are a number of different traditional Slovak recipe versions of French potatoes. Some people boil the potatoes whole before slicing them, thus ensuring that the potatoes are cooked and a shorter baking time. Some people use whipping cream (me), others use sour cream. You can add sliced pickles to the layers, paprika, or onions.

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19. Slovak Christmas Bobalki

Slovak Christmas Bobalki

These are a traditional Slovak treat that has been on my family’s Christmas Eve dinner table since before I was born. But after you try them, you’ll want to eat them all year! Bobalki (also spelled bobalky, babalki, babalky) are Slovak baked balls of dough.

They can be served sweet with ground poppy seeds and honey, or savory with sauerkraut and onion. They are a favorite for Slovak Christmas Eve, known as velija, and during Lent, but these light and airy balls of dough are delicious any time of year. This is a traditional Slovak recipe version that I really love

20. Rice and Offal Sausages: Slovak Jaterničky

Rice and Offal Sausages Slovak Jaterničky

Next of the products made from a traditional Slovak pig butchering is jaterničky (ya-ter-nich-ky), sausages stuffed with rice, offal, and various herbs. The idea of eating offal is hard for many to digest but with these sausages, I promise you would never know you were eating any untoward parts of a pig.

Seriously, if you have trouble with the thought of the taste of organs, this is the traditional Slovak recipe recipe to try (well, besides my amazing beef liver pate, that doesn’t taste strong at all).

If you’ve butchered an animal but not known what to do with the organs, especially the lungs, honestly try this. I do not like lung, I tried it once and was not impressed; in jaternicky, any offal taste is not even detected.


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