Dutch Quirk #32: Eat a lot of very questionable snack food

From frikandels to bitterballen 🌭

HomeUltimate List of Dutch QuirksDutch Quirk #32: Eat a lot of very questionable snack food

The Dutch may not have a world-renowned cuisine, but they sure have a — should we say unique? — snack assortment. If you’re ever in doubt, just head to your nearest snackbar or peruse the vending shelves of Smuller’s.

The fact that there’s even such a thing as snack food vending machines tells us the Dutch aren’t messing around when it comes to alcohol-fuelled cravings or deep-fried desires.

And deep-fried it is…

What is it?

A popular Dutch snack of deep-fried kroketten on some bread. Image: Depositphotos

Don’t get us wrong, we love a mustard-dipped bitterbal as much as the next person, but do we want to know what’s in it? No thanks. ✋

The thing about Dutch snack food is that a lot of it is deceivingly delicious — perhaps because most of it has been deep-fried beyond recognition. 👀

Some of the most popular deep-fried snacks include the infamous bitterballen, kroketten, and kaassoufflés.

READ MORE | These are 7 Dutch foods you need to try before you die

Then, there is the mysterious bami — which is essentially a Dutch attack on the Chinese-Indonesian dish bakmi goreng.

In your mixed bowl of borrel hapjes, the bami stands out with its breaded reddish-looking exterior.

However, don’t confuse it for a nugget! The bami is filled with meat, veggies, noodles (yes), and spicy sauces.

If that sounds like a lot, well, it is. 😅 However, that’s the wonder of Dutch snack foods.

It’s like there are absolutely no rules: you can simply take two, three, or four foods you like and mix them all together without anyone questioning you.

Bonus points if it’s deep-fried or surrounded by bread.

Why is it quirky? 

For a country that’s known for wholesome and healthy traits (did anyone say cycling?), it can seem almost surreal that their snack foods are so heavy and, well, unhealthy.

Not to mention that Dutch snack foods look so different from what other countries consider snacks — we internationals are sometimes completely at a loss for what it is we’re putting in our mouths. 😂

READ MORE | American kids try Dutch snacks for the first time and it’s hilarious (vid inside)!

Should you join in? 

Absolutely! Borrelcultuur is an important aspect of life in the Netherlands and who doesn’t love some deep-fried finger bite food?

Okay, some Dutch snack foods are a bit questionable (we’re looking at you frikandelspeciaal), but at least they’re eaten in good company — usually over a couple of beers and accompanied by laughter.

What do you think of this Dutch quirk? Have you experienced it? Tell us in the comments below!

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Christine Stein Hededam 🇩🇰
Christine Stein Hededam 🇩🇰
A Dane with a special place in her heart for Minnesota, Christine is now falling in love with everything Dutch. Between finishing her bachelor’s degree, learning Dutch, and doing yoga teacher training, you will find her wandering about the Hague. Always up for visiting new places, she loves to explore the Netherlands with friends and takes pride in scoping out cute cafés (wherein to discuss books, big plans, and food).


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