What are some of the best Taiwanese Street Foods you can find in the country of Taiwan?
When you think of Taiwan, what do you normally think about?
Most people would say the Taipei 101 building, Sun Moon Lake, Alishan, Night Markets and that’s about it.
However unbeknownst to many people, Taiwan is much more than that.
This country has a thriving food culture that is constantly changing to please peoples palates.
In fact, this country is filled with so many different kinds of food with influences from all over the world. It is literally a food lover’s dream come true as you are able to taste so many different kinds of delicious foods.
It is here where you are able to find amazing Michelin star quality restaurants as well as street foods and anything else you might think of. Taiwan has it all.
It’s no wonder millions of people visit Taiwan each and every year from all around the world.
Now because there are so many different kinds of foods available here in this country, it might be hard to try them all. Especially if it is going to be your first time visiting this place.
Which is why i’m here to help you out.
In this post, i’ll be highlighting the 23 best Taiwanese street foods you need to try when you are visiting Taiwan.
Lets get started!
- Taiwanese Street Foods To Try In Taiwan
- Taro Balls
- Scallion Pancakes
- Tea Egg
- Fried Taro Ball
- Fried Chicken
- Oyster Omelet
- Stinky Tofu
- Fire and Ice Dumpling
- Gua Bao
- Bubble Tea/Boba
- Shaved Ice
- Small Sausage In Big Sausage
- Deep Fried Quail Eggs
- Candied Tomatoes
- Deep Fried/Grilled Squid
- Black Pepper Buns
- Peanut Ice Cream Roll
- Aiyu Jelly Drink
- Coffin Bread
Taiwanese Street Foods To Try In Taiwan
In no particular order, here are the best Taiwanese Street Foods to try when you are visiting the country of Taiwan.
Taro balls are basically fresh taro that has been peeled, steamed, and mixed with potato starch then diced into bite sized pieces. They are then cooked in boiling water to get that famous chewy texture.
You can find this food literally all over Taiwan. They are served either over shaved ice or a warm dessert soup. The smooth and chewy taro balls are a great snack to enjoy.
Scallion pancakes are a common street food item that can be food in many stalls and restaurants around the country. It is basically similar to a pancake except that it has layers of crispy goodness to it.
Depending on where you go to get theses, they can often times be combined with egg or ham or any other food item to make into a sandwich.
If you are ever wandering around the streets of Taiwan and suddenly start smelling some funky egg scent, tea eggs are your culprit.
Tea eggs are basically eggs that have been cooked with tea leaves and other spices. The shells are usually cracked a bit when cooking to give it an intricate design that appears after you peel the egg.
It is a favorite item to eat among many Taiwanese locals as its cheap simple and fast.
Fried Taro Ball
A new popular trend in food in Taiwan is the deep fried taro balls. Everything is made on the spot from working the taro paste around the fillings to deep frying them so they are fresh and hot. It is truly a delicious snack that everybody will enjoy.
Do know that lines for this item can be pretty long so you might have to wait awhile before you can try it.
Ba-Wan consists of a translucent glutinous dough wrapped around a filling of seasoned pork, bamboo shoots, shiitake mushrooms and shallots. Usually served either steamed or deep-fried, the “meatball” is served in a pool of starchy gravy with a drizzle of sweet chilli sauce.
As you know, every country has their own variety and take of the classic fried chicken. And the Taiwanese are no different.
In Taiwan, you can find the fried chicken specialized into two different ways.
One you are most familiar with which is called “Popcorn chicken” has its roots come from Taiwan. The small delicious bite sized pieces of juicy tender chicken with a nice crunchy exterior. Yum.
Another type of fried chicken they do here is where the chicken is flattened out into big chunky piece. In fact, some places make the chicken as big as your face.
And the taste of both of these types of chicken is top notch as they come in a variety of different flavors.
Oyster omelet is a classic dish that you must have to try in Taiwan. These yummy and delicious omelets are filled with tons and tons of oysters. It’s basically like eating oysters with a side of egg. You definitely will not be disappointed with this dish. It’s extremely thick, and also filling that will keep you wanting more and more.
Stinky Tofu is a famous item to get when you are in Taiwan. It is basically a fermented tofu that smells pretty bad. Now I know that might turn off a lot of people, however I assure you that it is incredibly delicious. The dish might also have a sauce or no sauce added on with some vegetables. It is definitely a unique dish that everybody needs to try.
Fire and Ice Dumpling
Fire and Ice Dumplings are basically a dish that consists of shaved ice with hot sesame mochi balls on top. It is then usually topped with osmanthus flower juice to give it a sweet and savory taste.
It is a new trending item that has been taking the country by storm and is incredibly delicious especially on a hot day.
Gua Bao is one of Taiwan’s most popular dishes that many people love. It is a snack that is starting to pop up all over the world. Basically it is similar to a hamburger in which it consists of a fluffy bun that is filled with meat (usually pork), and is topped with all kinds of vegetables like pickled mustard greens, crushed sweet peanuts, and coriander. You can find these baos all over Taiwan and it will leave you happy and content.
This is arguably one of the most famous Taiwanese Street Foods to come across when in Taiwan.
If you love bubble tea, then why not come to the homeland of bubble tea. This is where the drink was created. No matter where you go in Taiwan, you are bound to find a shop selling this amazing drink. Try the original milk tea with boba drink or you can opt to try the many other variety of flavors the shops might have. Overall, you will be impressed by the quality of the drinks here.
Now I don’t know about you, but I personally don’t like the shaved ice we have in America. They are basically snow cones. However in Taiwan, this is different. They take things to a whole another level. They make the shaved ice into a towering mountain filled with condensed milk and all types of fruits. They are so huge that you most likely will have to share it with another person in order to finish it. It is really a delight to eat.
You can’t go wrong with shaved ice. It is literally one of the best Taiwanese Street Foods for you to try.
Small Sausage In Big Sausage
This is an interesting food item as it consists of 2 different sausages. One sausage is made out of rice and the second sausage is usually made out of pork. They slice open the rice sausage and stuff it with the pork sausage kind of similar to a hot dog.
It is a interesting and unique take on a hot dog that is sure to have you craving for more and more.
Takoyaki is basically a fried octopus ball and can be found all throughout Taiwan. Although it is one of Japan’s most famous dishes, Taiwan makes it just as good. It is a very simple and straight forward dish. They take a piece of octopus and cover it in dough batter and cook it into a ball shape. After that they top it with a sweet sauce, bonito flakes, and also Japanese mayonnaise.
Deep Fried Quail Eggs
Deep fried quail eggs are like miniature eggs that have been fried by a street vendor right before your eyes. Flavor is added by a variety of sauces available at the table from chili sauce to wasabi, sweet-sour sauce, etc…
It is a tasty snack that is also very cheap and affordable.
Similar to candied apples, the tomatoes are dipped in a sugar syrup. It is then dried up into what is a hard candy type coating so that when you bite into it, you’ll get a nice hard crunch. The tomato is acidic followed by sugary sweet and plummy li hing taste. Which will make your mouth dance in happiness as soon as you bite into it.
Deep Fried/Grilled Squid
This food item is exactly how it sounds like. It is basically a squid that is either deep fried or grilled (depends on the vendor) and is usually topped with some type of sauce to pair with it. The texture of it is incredibly soft and a bit chewy which makes it a delight to bite into.
Black Pepper Buns
One of the most popular street food items in Taiwan is one called a Black pepper bun. It is a glorious meat bun that is packed full of black pepper, giving it that rich kick in the mouth that you been wanting to have.
Do know that lines for this item are really long so you’ll have to wait quite a bit in order to try it.
Peanut Ice Cream Roll
This tasty snack consists of a spring roll that is made from a wheat flour based wrapper. It is then stuffed with shredded pork and bean sprouts. However, this isn’t the version you want. The one you want is the dessert form of it. This is where you have a spring roll sprinkled with crushed peanuts and then have a scoop of ice cream topped in it. They’ll roll it nice and tight to serve you.
Each and every bite will be sweet and crunchy and will have you wanting more and more.
This is definitely one of the more unique and interesting Taiwanese Street Foods to come across.
Aiyu Jelly Drink
Depending on which vendor you go to, it may also be called frog’s eggs. But don’t worry, it is not from a frog. This tasty drink is basically a jelly drink that is made from the seeds of a variety of fig. It is then served with sugar water with a handful of lemons to give it that refreshing taste you been craving for.
Another Japanese item you can find all over Taiwan is one called a Dorayaki. It is basically a sweet pancake patty sandwiche on top of custard or a creamy red bean paste.
Coffin bread is a food item from Taiwan that is popular among the Taiwanese locals. It’s basically a fried piece of toast that has been stuffed with all kinds of food or chowder. Most night markets will sell their own variety and version of this tasty dish, so see if you can try them all.
The reason it is called coffin bread is because an archaeologist noted that the toast looked similar to a coffin that he was excavating.
Another Japanese dessert that can be commonly found all over Taiwan is that of a Imagawayaki. It is made of batter in a special pan (similar to a waffle iron but without the honeycomb pattern), and filled with sweet azuki bean paste, although it is becoming increasingly popular to use a wider variety of fillings.
As you can see from this list, Taiwan is an amazing place for some delicious and tasty foods.
If you are visiting this country, hopefully this list will be able to help you out in finding just what foods you are able to eat.
Also, if you are planning to visit Taiwan anytime soon, you might also be interested in some of my other Taiwan posts.
- Taipei – best restaurants in Taipei, Taiwan
- Taipei – 15 awesome things do to in Taipei Taiwan
- Food – 15 delicious foods you must try when visiting Taiwan
- Taipei – best themed cafes in Taipei, Taiwan
Or you can check out my complete list of things to do in Taiwan by clicking here.
Let me know how your trip goes!