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Foods to try in Abu Dhabi

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Numerous tourists travel to Abu Dhabi each year to discover the city and the rest of the country. Apart from architectural wonders, the cuisine of Abu Dhabi is also something to cherish. It is a delicious cuisine with a variety of flavours to try from. One must try this cuisine once in their lifetime and they will remember this forever. In this article, we will discuss in detail the must-try foods of Abu Dhabi along with some restaurants which are quite popular across the country. 

Foods to try in Abu Dhabi  

Abu Dhabi is home to many marvels. Everything will leave you in awe, whether it's the gleaming skyscrapers, the opulent malls, the stunning souks, the kind people, or the delectable treats. There are several restaurants in Abu Dhabi that provide food from all over the world. Some of the must-try delicacies of Abu Dhabi are: 


A vacation to Abu Dhabi, or indeed any Emirate in the United Arab Emirates, would be lacking without experiencing this dinner. Khoozi, frequently spelt Ghuzi, is the national dish of the United Arab Emirates. It is available on rare occasions, but restaurants also regularly serve it. It is one of Abu Dhabi's most well-liked dishes and is regarded as a meal in and of itself. 


Al Machboos 

One of the most straightforward and delicious dishes you will ever eat is this local cuisine in Abu Dhabi. Rice, beef, lamb, chicken, shrimp, fish, onions, veggies, spices, and lemon are the main ingredients in this one-pot meal. Although the meal shares many similarities with the Indian delicacy biryani, what sets it apart is the rich and aromatic spices that are used to season it, including cumin, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, chickpeas, saffron, turmeric, chillies, mace, and many more. 

Al Harees 

One of the national cuisines of the emirates, it is prepared especially for Eid al-Fitr, weddings, and other festive occasions like the holy month of Ramadan. Wheat and your choice of meat are the major ingredients (preferably chicken or lamb). 

Stuffed Camel 

This entrée is the largest on the menu, according to the Guinness Book of World Records! The camel is stuffed with a lamb, followed by one or more chickens, which are then packed with rice, eggs, and occasionally fish. 


Even though the majority of you have probably heard of or eaten shawarmas before, I can assure you that the ones you find here will be exceptional. The locals of Abu Dhabi love to eat at this traditional Lebanese restaurant. These are available in all streetside kiosks, motels, and neighbourhood eateries. The Shish Shawerma is the ideal location to indulge in delicious treats


In the UAE, a traditional sweet and savoury delicacy called balaleet is hugely popular. The key ingredients are vermicelli which has been sweetened with sugar, nuts, saffron, rose water, cardamom, cinnamon, and pistachios. On top, an egg omelette is placed. This dish, which is both sweet and salty, is typically served as dessert but is a morning staple. 

Al Madrooba 

Fish, spices, and thick sauces make up the popular Emirati seafood dish known as "al Madrooba" in Abu Dhabi. The typical accompaniments are pita bread or raqaq. For those who are hankering after a very wonderful seafood dinner, this is the finest option. 



Saloona is a local meat stew made with vegetables, chicken, hog, or lamb that is served with boiled rice. Despite using minimal spices, it has a rich flavour and is nutritious. This dish is offered in a wide range of flavours and locations. 


Green onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley, crushed wheat, and fresh mint are the main ingredients of tabbouleh, a favourite dish in Abu Dhabi. If you want a vegetarian, healthy option, you can order it as an appetizer or a full dinner. 


These are more Middle Eastern versions of French fries. These are fried balls and patties composed of ground fava beans or chickpeas that are served with a hot sauce or dip. The finest spot to enjoy these is at the network of Just Falafel Street Food restaurants, created in Abu Dhabi. 

Esh Asarya 

Esh Asarya has cream icing and is more akin to an Emirati cheesecake. This delectable dish, also known as "bread of the Harem," is made of bread that has been soaked in rosewater, orange blossom water, lemon juice, and cream. One of the most well-known Emirati desserts, this is a must-have for any meal. 


Most people have probably heard of this popular Abu Dhabi dish. Fresh lettuce, sliced tomatoes, cucumber, mint leaves, onion, garlic, and olives make up this seasoned salad, which is eaten on pita bread. This is both delicious and nutritious. This straightforward dish is a must-try if you've already tried shawarmas, al harees, al majboos, and other spicy treats. 

Restaurants to visit 

The restaurants in Abu Dhabi reflect the city's cosmopolitan attitudes and opulent splendour, offering a wide variety of alternatives and cuisines to indulge your taste buds. Here are a few of Abu Dhabi's top eateries for a culinary adventure as fascinating as your travel stories. Some of the famous restaurants in Abu Dhabi are: 

Punjab Grill 

It provides a world-class dining experience in the ideal setting inside the Ritz Carlton. With its flavours and spices, Punjab Grill, one of Abu Dhabi's top Indian restaurants, transports you on an extraordinary gastronomic journey. The staff provides excellent service and offers useful suggestions for your order. 


One of Abu Dhabi's best restaurants for wonderful Japanese and Asian food is this chic, sophisticated sushi bar. The setting is wonderful, the music is relaxing, and the service is exceptional. They provide delicious delicacies including sea bass that has been thinly sliced, black cod that has been miso marinated, soft crab sushi, sashimi, and asparagus with wafu sauce. 


This Brazilian-style restaurant, which is located in the middle of the city, offers 16 different varieties of premium meat, each of which tastes better than the previous. Because they have a "eat all you can" policy, this is a feast that meat aficionados shouldn't miss. 


A superb lunch may be had in this charming restaurant's laid-back ambience. They serve delicious Indian food with a unique twist that enhances the overall experience. The staff is attentive, and accommodating, and offers helpful recommendations regarding the menu and food. 


Asia de Cuba 

Asia de Cuba is a well-liked destination for tourists since it offers a range of flavorful Asian dishes and has a cosy setting. For those who enjoy fine dining, the St. Regis Hotel's restaurant is a great retreat. 


Abu Dhabi is full of culture and traditional foods. If you are a foodie and want to explore various cuisines which conceive the heritage of that country, then Abu Dhabi is the ultimate destination for you. All that the place has to offer, one thing is for sure, you will never get enough of it.

The first thing you need to take care of while travelling to Abu Dhabi is getting a visa for the UAE. Going there would not only let you enjoy Abu Dhabi to the full extent but will also open your doors to exploring the other six absolutely wonderful emirates. So what are you waiting for? Get your e-visa today from Etihad UAE Visa and fly to Abu Dhabi without any hassle.  

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Frequently Asked Questions

If you are visiting Abu Dhabi, you should not miss these cuisines: 

  • Khoozi 
  • Al Harees 
  • Shawarma 
  • Al Madrooba 
  • Saloona 

Etihad UAE Visa is the ideal place to apply for an e-visa to Abu Dhabi. Simply complete the visa application and upload the required files. You can also track the status of your visa application after paying the required visa costs. 

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