The blend of cuisines from various cities around the world supports Dubai’s designation as a culinary hybrid and as a leader in the global culinary landscape. While in the city, select gourmet meal plans that suit your preferences and allow you to explore the many local delicacies and dishes.
There are cheap and expensive options of food, depending on your choice of restaurant and meal. Prepare for a unique culinary experience, as the food in Dubai is unlike any other you’ve had.
Eating in Dubai
Dubai’s food scene is influenced by dishes from around the world. Restaurants in the region are inspired by Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine, as well as by traditional Emirati food. The area is filled with delicacies taken from countries like India, North Korea, Iran, and Lebanon, just to name a few. Do your research to try out spicy Indian curries, Arabic coffee, rich Italian pastas, and tender Iranian kebabs. Many argue there is not a single type of cuisine in the world that cannot be found in the city of Dubai. This may be the case because a huge number of expatriates from various countries have chosen to relocate and start businesses there.
Traditional Emirati Food
A trip to Dubai is incomplete without an experience of the emirate’s local delicacies. Traditional Emirati cuisine takes inspiration from the area’s culture, geography, and climate. Meals revolve around meat, fish, and rice. Meat from goat, lamb, and sheep is generally preferred over that from chicken, cow, and pig. Most dishes include a blend of spices like turmeric, saffron, cardamom, cinnamon, and chili. These are spices that had come from and been influenced by trade between Indian merchants and Bedouins, the ancestors of the local Dubai community.
The popular option for those from Old Dubai was a one-pot main course dish. This was the practice because it significantly reduced the number of dishes to wash and simplified food transportation. It was suited for a desert climate with people more accustomed to travelling than to settling down.
Camel is one of the main ingredients used for many Emirati dishes today. Modern chefs make all kinds of camel dishes like camel sliders, biryani, burgers, and stews. Some also prepare camel stuffed with various herbs and spices. Camel is a popular, common, and cheap option for meat because of the many camels around the area.
Dubai is a vegetarian-friendly city. Many of its dishes do not contain meat and can provide proper nutrition for those seeking a healthier lifestyle. The Baba Ghanoush, for example, is an appetizer and dip made from smoked eggplant and mixed with onions, olive oil, and tomatoes.
Exploring the city’s street food options is a quick, easy, and cheap way of trying out different versions of traditional Emirati dishes. The falafel is an example of a typical Middle Eastern street food. It is a deep-fried ball made of fava beans or ground chickpeas and covered with spices.
Dubai’s rich culinary landscape influenced by all kinds of cultures provides a unique experience for visitors and even for locals.