When visiting a new country or city, it’s natural that you’re interested in trying the traditional cuisine. We’ve visited Prague more times than we can count (we worked in Europe as tour guides for many years), and this is one of our favourite cities in the world. Each time we return, we take ourselves on a personal food tour find the best Czech food in Prague.
There are a considerable number of places that serve Czech food, but many of them are not very good at all. You see, the city of Prague is extremely popular with tourists and many restaurants only cater to the hordes of tourists wanting to try traditional Czech food while in town, which is likely to be a couple of days at most. This type of restaurant usually has just dollar signs in their eyes and you’ll pay top dollar for sub-par Czech food. We talk about this and more in our post – 7 Tips: how to find the best food when travelling.
If you want a plate of the best Czech food in Prague at the right price, then read on below.
When visiting Prague (and this same rule applies to other popular tourist cities around the world), avoid signs in English with photos of the food that advertise “original” or “traditional” cuisine. It’s a dead giveaway that you’re likely to be disappointed and overcharged with the experience.
But, to avoid this happening to you on your search for the best Czech food in Prague, here are the places we recommend. They’re tried and trusted, consistent, and work hard to serve the traditional Czech cuisine you’re craving.
Stop in at this bustling grill house and butchers near Wenceslas Square, an easy pit-stop to make on your day exploring the best of Prague. In this beautiful old building, complete with marble tables and modern touches, the concept is an old-style Czech canteen that has been reinvented. Meat lovers will LOVE it here! The best cuts of Czech pork and beef are expertly cut by in-house butchers and displayed for sale.
Rach eating best Czech food in Prague at Kantyna
Walk into Kantyna a little further and you’ll find meats being grilled to perfection or baked low and slow for guests who choose to dine in. Not only will you find mouthwatering spit-roasted pork shoulder, wine-braised ribs, roast beef neck or pork belly to choose from (the menu is meat-heavy), the harder decision is choosing what to order with it.
Should you stick with the local specialties and order a soup to start? Then follow with a side of creamy mashed potato or garlic potato pancakes to match your chosen meat? Yes, all of the above is a good choice. Some of the best Czech food in Prague is here, whatever you choose in the end.
The Kantyna ordering system works like a traditional Czech canteen. All the food is cooked and you select what you’d like. Make your selection of cooked meat and ask the chef behind the counter how much you’d like.
NOTE: Almost everything is charged by weight, and most cuts of meat are charged at approx 110 CZK ($5.00) per 100g. Be careful not to over-order on the meat! I’d recommend 200g of meat is enough for one person. Then, you choose your sides as mentioned above. You’re handed back your plate full of food and a ticket that records the weight of your meat, mashed potato, etc.
Best Czech Food in Prague is always good with beer
Your final stop before you head back to your table (unless you did it when you first walked in) is to walk directly across from the place you ordered your meal and choose a beer! It’s all fresh Czech beer on tap, and you’ll pay about 55 CZK ($2.50) for a half litre of beer. I love dark beer, but any Czech beer is good in my opinion.
If you’ve got any room left after your meal, I’d recommend you order the Czech bun filled with cheese curd, they’re really good.
My foodie tip: Order the tartare steak as a starter. You won’t be disappointed. This is super fresh, and it doesn’t get much more traditional than this. Tartare steak from Kantyna is the best Czech food in Prague you’ll eat while you’re here. Check out their menu here.
Once you’ve finished your meal, take your ticket to the person at the register on your way out and take care of your bill. You can plan from our list below where your next stop for the best Czech food in Prague will be.
This is undoubtedly the most famous pub in Prague. U Fleku is a famous historic venue with eight separate dining halls slinging out traditional Czech dishes, Bohemian specialties & local beer. This restaurant is one of the most memorable cultural and culinary experiences I’ve ever had in Prague, not to mention it serves the best Czech food in Prague. I always stop by for another meal and beer each time I’m back in this city. Sure there are always plenty of tourists here, but you know why.
You must stop at U Fleku to eat traditional Czech food in Prague. Photo Credit: ufleku.cz
During warm weather, a table outside in the garden is perfect for dining and drinking some of the best beer in the city. They provide a great atmosphere here with live music and good service too.
The U Fleku brewery is the only brewery in Central Europe where beer has been brewed continuously for over 500 years. It’s no surprise then that the Czech Republic drinks more beer per capita than any other nation in the world.
My Foodie Tip: Order the roasted duck with potato dumplings and red cabbage. What a dish! The best Czech food in Prague by far! Here’s the full menu at U Fleku.
If you’re after a real ‘local’ Czech experience, and some of the best Czech food in Prague for the price, this is a worthy stop for lunch. Havelska Koruna is in a great location, you’d probably miss it if you didn’t know about it. Local Czechs stop at this low-key canteen eatery on their lunch break for a hot, hearty meal.
They serve up the staple Czech foods in including meat dishes, schnitzel, goulash, fried cheese, fruit dumplings, and of course big bowls of Czech soup with bread. This would be arguably the best Czech food in Prague on budget.
Best Czech food in Prague that is affordable, consistent and in a great location. Photo Credit: Havelska Koruna
As you walk in, simply collect a tray and make your way through the line and select your food from the cooks behind the counter. They’ll dish up what you ask for and mark it off on a ticket. English may not be widely spoken in this very local eatery, but if language is a barrier, it’s OK to point at your selection of food with a smile.
The food is very affordable here and there’s quite a lot of dining space. Most people come here to simply eat and then leave, so don’t expect any table service or anything fancy. In saying that, the food is good, the price is right and you’re surrounded by locals (not tourists) while eating lunch here.
Once you’ve finished your meal and are ready to leave, simply take your ticket and pay the person at the counter before you exit. Don’t lose your ticket as you need it to exit.
My Foodie Tip: If you haven’t tried it yet, order the fried cheese with potatoes. If this doesn’t appeal to you, the goulash is always a good choice too. So many dishes to choose from here if you want variety. The best Czech food in Prague doesn’t always have to be expensive and Havelska Koruna is proof of this. View the whole menu here.
If you’re looking for a real food experience of trying the best Czech food in Prague, La Degustation might be for you. An intimate restaurant with 35 seats, the focus of the chefs is to take the diner on a tasting menu journey. Traditional recipes, the freshest ingredients and super fancy Czech food are what this restaurant is all about.
I like that they build the menu according to produce in season and when preparing game meat, they’re curious about what environment the animal lives in, what it eats, and how the seasons alter its flavour.
La Degustation delivers a delicious tasting journey of trying the best Czech food in Prague. Photo Credit: La Degustation
The chefs have received one Michelin star for the magic they create here, so it’s almost guaranteed to be a memorable experience. The set menu is very creative and finely tuned and my favourite part of the night was peering over to the open kitchen to watch the chefs hard at work.
You can choose to include paired wine (chosen by the in-house Sommeliers) or soft drink in your set menu if you wish.
This is a fantastic night out in Prague. If you have the budget and you enjoy fine food, you’ll appreciate this dining experience.
My Foodie Tip: I’d recommend making a reservation ahead of time to secure your table. Check out La Degustation website and the menu before you dine to learn more about this food journey you’re about to take.
Lokal is a classic Czech-style pub. There are five Lokal scattered around the city. The one that we think serves the best Czech food in Prague is Lokal in Dlouha street. The best thing about Lokal is they stick to what they know, and boy do they know how to cook Czech classic dishes.
A few of my favourite meals are fried cheese with potato, goulash with dumplings, or schnitzel with potato salad.
Lokal serves the best Czech food in Prague. Photo Credit: Lokalcz
Pilsner Urquell is the beer of choice at Lokal, held in a huge tank on-site, keeping it incredibly fresh. Order a beer with your meal, you’ll taste how good it is!
Fun Fact: Did you know that beer is cheaper than water in Prague?
The interior of Lokal is designed to look like the old Czech pub as it was ‘back in the day’. Lots of wood, old photos of Prague, and beer memorabilia.
If you’re noticing a trend here in the best Czech food in Prague, yes, potatoes and meat are included in many dishes. You’ll notice this also if you go to the 10 Best places to visit in Slovakia. This country is just next door to the Czech Republic, and it’s totally worth a visit.
If you’ve got a sweet tooth, then you’re going to love Czech sweets and pastries. There are a number of good places that make wonderful pastries, cakes and sweet treats, however, Cukrarna Mysak is our favourite.
An elegant coffee & pastry shop open since 1911. Here you can choose from a variety of traditional Czech cakes and pastries and they’re all fantastic! We love that you can enjoy a great coffee with your chosen sweet too.
A couple of Czech favourites you should try:
Kremrole – a puff pastry roll filled with soft meringue.
Vetrnik – a profiterole ball filled with vanilla cream, and caramel whipped cream and caramel on top
My Foodie Tip: Order the Venecek, this is my favourite sweet Czech food in Prague. It’s a delicate pastry filled with vanilla pastry cream and a delicious sugar glaze.
Venecek. My choice for the best sweet Czech food in Prague
One more thing you must try in Prague
While we’re on the topic of sweets, there is one more thing you must try while you’re here. The most popular Czech sweet in Prague is the Trdelnik. It’s sometimes referred to as ‘chimney cake’ too. While it is disputed where it originates from (Hungary and Slovakia both claim they invented it) it’s plentiful in Prague.
This is a wonderful Bohemian sweet pastry made of yeast dough, then wrapped in strips around a metal spindle called a ‘trdlo’ and baked over coals. Once it’s ready, it’s then rolled in cinnamon sugar or a mixture of sugar and crushed walnut.
Trdelnik. A popular sweet Czech food in Prague
The time to buy a trdelnik is the moment you see it taken off the heat and rolled in the ingredients. It’s best enjoyed while it’s hot. Nowadays, I’ve noticed that many vendors selling trdelnik near to the Old Town of Prague will offer them filled with whipped cream, ice cream, Nutella and all kinds of things. This is really just for the tourists to post pretty photos on ‘the gram’. You’ll pay quite a bit more for it served this way and if you ask me, trdelnik is best served in the traditional way. It doesn’t need all that extra stuff. It just needs to be dusted with sugar and eaten hot.
Foodie Tip:If you want to try a traditional trdelnik at the right price, then walk out of the touristy Old Town of Prague and purchase one from a small shop or vendor while it’s super hot and fresh.
Where to Stay in Prague
There are many options for accommodation in Prague, but the location is important. It’s best if you choose a hotel that is near to a metro station in order to get around the city easily. In saying that, the trams are a fantastic way to get around the city too. We’ve taken this into consideration, along with the best value for money for our hotel recommendations below. Here are our choices for where to stay in Prague for every budget.
Budget Hotel – Our recommendation for affordable, comfortable accommodation in Prague is Hotel Florenc. Located within 100 metres from the Florenc metro, tram and bus stop, Hotel Florenc enjoys a central location in Prague.
Mid-Range – We recommend Hotel Tivoli Prague for good value and place to stay in Prague. Situated next to the I. P. Pavlova metro station, and just a 10-minute walk from Prague’s central Wenceslas Square.
Luxury – Alcron Hotel Prague gets our vote for amazing accommodation in the city. The price is very affordable considering the standard of this hotel. The location is perfect, right in the heart of Prague and a superb breakfast is included in the price.
Our Recommendations – Best Food Experiences in Prague
We hope you enjoyed reading our recommendations for the best Czech food in Prague. Please let us know in the comments below what is your favourite Czech food in Prague? And most importantly, where to find it.
Rach is a self-confessed travelling foodie. Her passion for food and culture has seen her eat her way through 187 countries. She's currently on a big food adventure to visit EVERY country in the world!
When Rach isn't travelling, you can find her at the beach, drinking coffee or wine with friends or chowing down on the best eats around her home city of Melbourne, Australia.