Foods From Australia – 12 Classic Australian Foods

When somebody asks me what is Australia’s national food or dish, I find it a little difficult to answer.

We’re a multicultural country, with many nationalities and cultures which add diversity to our cuisine.

Foods From Australia – 12 Classic Australian Foods

When somebody asks me what is Australia’s national food or dish, I find it a little difficult to answer.

We’re a multicultural country, with many nationalities and cultures which add diversity to our cuisine.

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

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foods from Australia

There is no question that the foods from Australia are wonderful—but what are the all-time classic Australian foods that visitors to the country must try?

Our list of foods from Australia are best enjoyed with mates (that’s Aussie slang for friends).

If you chat with a local, they will likely tell you about these 12 Australian foods you need to try.

Let’s dig in! 12 Classic Australian Foods

1. Chicken parma

This hugely popular Aussie meal won’t go down in history as being the most flavoursome thing you’ll ever eat. But, it is oh so satisfying and comforting.  

The classic chicken parmigiana (it’s no surprise we’ve shortened its name to just chicken parma) is best served from the kitchen at an Aussie pub.

Also, it tastes best alongside a pot of cold beer.

best restaurants in lakes entrance chicken parma
Classic Australian food is the good old chicken parmigiana.

A chicken parmigiana is a chicken fillet blasted a few times to flatten it out and make it bigger. It’s then prepared by dusting it with flour, egg wash, and breadcrumbs and shallow-frying it in oil.

Once it’s golden brown, it’s covered with homemade tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese and grilled until it’s melted. Sometimes, a piece of crispy bacon or a few slices of ham is added to the mix, too.

A chicken parma is usually served with chips and salad. Take it from me, this will be a super filling meal – so arrive hungry!

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2. Meat pie

This is THE classic Australian food you must try while here. Aussies love meat pies and would put it on the top of the list of foods from Australia you need to try.

Don’t waste your time and try just any meat pie, ask a local where you can find a great pie. They’ll probably direct you towards a bakery, small cafe, or corner store.

An Aussie meat pie is a savoury meal and it’s most popular at lunchtime. You’re in luck if you can get one that has just come fresh from the oven.

foods from australia classic meat pie
Classic foods from Australia – Meat pie, with sauce of course!

There are many fillings to choose from, yet the most common is minced beef or chunks of steak with gravy. For the adventurous, the standard fillings of steak often come with onion, pepper, or mushrooms too.

Nowadays, fillings for pies are becoming super fancy! Think lamb and rosemary, roast chicken and vegetables, and even Indian-style buttered chicken or lentil and spinach too.

3. Fish & chips

I have to admit it, we cook fish and chips pretty well in Australia. It makes sense that it’s on our list of classic Australian foods.

Our country is completely surrounded by the ocean, so the fish is usually freshly caught that day. 

classic Australian foods fish and chips
Classic Australian food is getting fish and chips and sitting on the beach to eat them with a cold beer

There’s nothing better than going for a weekend away to one of the smaller coastal towns or these 8 best beaches in New South Wales in Australia to order fish and chips, then enjoy it on the beach.

You can unwrap your meal right there and enjoy it as you watch the sun go down.

Just watch out for those cheeky seagulls! (sea birds in Australia).

Your fish will typically be battered and deep-fried. If you prefer it grilled, you can ask the shop to prepare it this way instead, no worries. If you really want to pimp out your first Aussie fish and chips experience, order a few fried dims sims and potato cakes too. 

4. Vegemite on toast

You either love it or hate it, but most Aussies have grown up with this stuff and we love it! No visit to Australia is complete without having tried vegemite at least once.

So what is vegemite? It’s a dark paste made from leftover brewers yeast extract with different vegetable and spice additives.

It’s kind of similar to marmite in the UK, but let’s not get into that debate between Brits and Aussies about which one tastes better; we’d be here all day.

foods from australia - vegemite
Perhaps one of the MOST popular foods from Australia – Vegemite. I LOVE it!

The most popular way to enjoy vegemite is on toast with loads of butter. You can also spread it on bread or even dry biscuits too. The secret here is in the application of the vegemite.

Don’t overload your toast with too much of the stuff. It can be overbearing as the flavour is quite salty and slightly savoury.

I’d recommend a ‘dabbing action’ and apply it in small amounts. Once you’re on board as a ‘happy little vegemite’ (the initial ad campaign in Australia for marketing vegemite to the nation, listen here), you’ll be adding it to other food too.

I eat vegemite with melted cheese, and avocado, I sometimes add a small spoonful to stews and sauces to add depth of flavour.

Vegemite can be purchased from any supermarket in Australia in a number of different-sized jars. We love the stuff so much that they also produce it in a travel-sized tube to take on holiday.

You can always spot an Aussie at the breakfast buffet carrying the bright yellow tube of vegemite. 

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5. Pavlova

classic australian foods pavlova
Famous foods from Australia. The pavlova, especially at Christmas time.

Both Australia and New Zealand lay claim to being the creators of this famous dessert. It’s usually Christmas or special occasions when you’ll see this eye-catching delight adorn the kitchen table.

Crispy meringue crust under fruit filling of strawberries, mangoes, kiwi fruit, passionfruit and fresh whipped cream on top. It’s pretty special. 

Either way, you could say pavlova is one of the famous foods from Australia & NZ.

6. Sausage roll

Sausage rolls are another lunchtime favourite and the best ones can be found in small family-run bakeries. A sausage roll is made of minced sausage meat, wrapped in puff pastry and baked until perfectly golden. You know you’re onto a good thing when the pastry is nice and flaky.

I’ve eaten some of the best sausage rolls in Australia in Cairns, Queensland. Check out my post on the 12 best cheap eats in Cairns.

Sausage rolls have really kicked it up a notch over the past decade, with so many new flavour creations. I’m talking flavour combinations such as lamb, rosemary and pine nuts or feta, spinach and pumpkin and pork and fennel, to name a few.

Add a dollop of homemade chutney to your sausage roll or just stick with the standard tomato sauce on top.

Don’t miss these classic foods from Australia during your visit.

7. Burger with the lot!

When we ask for a burger with the lot in Australia, we ask you to load it up with absolutely everything!

We know it’s going to be an absolute mission to try and squash that burger enough to get our mouths around it, but maybe that’s the thing…the challenge? 

classic australian foods burger with the lot
Classic Australian foods is a burger with the lot

A burger with the lot is typically a grilled beef patty with all the usual suspects. Tomato, lettuce, and cheese on a white burger bun. It’s always topped with a fried egg, sliced beetroot and pineapple (from a can), and then the sauce of your choice.

You can find a good burger with the lot from most ‘fish and chip’ shops or small cafes and take-away fast food shops. The Boathouse restaurant in Yeppoon, Queensland, makes one of the best burgers ever!

Read more on our list of best places to eat in Yeppoon.

8. Lamingtons

The lamington is a generous-sized, square-shaped sponge cake that has been dipped in chocolate and then coated in desiccated coconut.

You can also find the famed lamington with cream or jam filling.

foods from Australia - lamingtons
Lamington with a cup of tea or coffee. Foods from Australia to try!

The best lamingtons can be found in small family-run bakeries or good cafes. And like any good cake, the lamington tastes best alongside a nice cup of tea or coffee.

Widely recognised as the ‘National Cake of Australia’, this treat is an Australian icon named after Lord Lamington, a former Governor of Queensland.

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9. Snags

The ‘snag’ or sausage is what the bratwurst sausage is to the Germans or what the hotdog is to Americans. You can’t leave the country without trying this classic Australian food.

Honestly, it’s such a simple thing to cook, no actual skill is required.

A snag is simply a grilled sausage from the local supermarket (you can purchase them in a bulk-size packet for a very affordable price).

It’s served in a slice of white bread, a few charred onions on top, and ketchup too.

classic australian foods snags
If you’re at an Aussie BBQ, you’ll probably eat a few sausages, or snags for short! You know we like to shorten words in Oz.

If you want to sample a typical Aussie sausage sizzle, head down to Bunnings on the weekend. Bunnings is one of Australia’s biggest hardware stores. Y

For a few dollars, you can ‘grab an Aussie snag’, freshly grilled from the BBQ with charred onions, from the tent at the front of the store.

Alternatively, you’ll always find a bunch of grilled snags at an Aussie BBQ because kids love them. They’re also cheap to buy. Those who love snags say that they taste bloody good when eaten cold, too.

10. Arnott’s shapes

Arnott’s is an Australian biscuit brand responsible for some of the country’s most popular biscuits. Whatever you do, pick up a ‘packet of shapes’ during your visit to Oz.

Arnott’s Shapes are oven-baked savoury biscuits of different shapes, and you can choose from various flavours.

Hands down, my favourite flavour since I was a child has to be BBQ shapes. Coming in at a very close second place would have to be Pizza Shapes.

The best part about a bag of shapes is getting to the bottom of the packet and finding all the seasoning resting at the bottom…yum!

11. Tim tams

The Tim Tam is arguably Australia’s most loved chocolate biscuit. It consists of two malted biscuits separated by a light chocolate cream filling and coated in a thin layer of textured chocolate.

classic Australian foods tim tams
Tim Tams. The Aussie biscuit – classic Australian foods

Because of its ongoing popularity, this biscuit is now sold worldwide. Nowadays, they come in the form of many great new flavours.

I love the ‘Original’ Tim Tam, but look out for the salted caramel and manuka honey biscuits; they’re fantastic.

12. Aussie BBQ

Australians enjoy spending time outdoors. We love grilling food outside or inviting our mates for a BBQ if the weather is good.

You name it; almost anything and everything can be found on an Aussie BBQ grill. Pork/lamb chops, different cuts of steak, sausages, hamburgers, chicken pieces, and even seafood.

Additionally, we’ll grill thin slices of potato, and let’s not forget the onion. We love charred, almost burnt sliced onion that tastes good on anything.

classic australian foods aussie BBQ

This tastes wonderful alongside cold salads such as coleslaw, potato salad, and green salad.

There will always be an endless supply of white sliced bread. Don’t forget that Aussies love to put tomato sauce (ketchup) on everything.

And, if you’re visiting Australia to explore our beautiful country, don’t miss our 9 top tips for doing the Big Lap of Oz.

Imagine all the classic Australian foods you could try on an Aussie road trip!

Is there anything you would add to our list of classic Australian foods?

Travel Tips for Australia

We have many travel guides and tips for Australia—what a diverse country!

Australia is ideal for exploring with two wheels! If you plan to explore Oz, check out our best tips for doing the Big Lap of Australia 

Our complete guide to Great Keppel Island is all you need for the perfect island stay.

If you head back to the coast, we recommend that you visit Yeppoon and the Capricorn Coast. Check out the 15 Best Things To Do in Yeppoon, and don’t forget about the food. We’ve got you covered with the best places to eat in Yeppoon.

Our comprehensive itineraries for travelling in Australia include this Brisbane to Cairns Road Trip – the Best 14-day itinerary, our detailed Guide to Camping in Karijini National Park and the Ultimate Guide to Carnarvon Gorge.

We’re all about the food, too! Don’t miss these 12 best cheap eats in Cairns.

We highly recommend you visit the gorgeous Whitsunday Islands in Queensland; this is a special place!

If you’re after a unique experience, these five reasons why you need to Reefsleep on the Great Barrier Reef will do it.

If you’re visiting Australia on vacation, try these 12 classic Australian foods while you’re here and see if you can visit these iconic 30 Best BIG Things in Australia.

Do you plan to visit the Pacific islands? You’ll need our ULTIMATE guide to visit every country in the Pacific.

Furthermore, if you plan to travel longer after visiting Australia, these 21 cheapest countries to visit will make your hard-earned dollars stretch a bit further.

You’ll need to stay connected while travelling in Australia. We recommend eSIM. It’s easy, reliable and affordable. View options for eSIM in Australia.

If your travels in Australia are part of a much larger global adventure, then a Global eSIM may be the answer. It connects you in 124 countries, offering data-only eSIM and data/call/text eSIM. The Global eSIM has been a game-changer; we couldn’t imagine travelling without it now.

Want to travel around Australia with like-minded travellers? View the best deals on group adventures in Australia.

Check out our best-ever travel tips compiled from more than twenty years of experience.

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