The world is filled with countless choices, especially when it comes to the quality and type of food you eat. However, what often happens is that we get stuck in a rut and don’t try other foods. We are comfortable eating the same food over and over.
Although it is great to have familiarity, it is important to be open to new experiences and flavors. To help you with your new adventures, we have compiled a list of foods that start with the letter “A”, including vegetables, fruits, unique ingredients, and even some dishes belonging to diverse cuisines around the globe.
The List: 31 Foods that Start with A
Abgoosht is a popular Parsi dish. The word ab refers to water, and goosht relates to meat. It is also known as “dizi” which refers to the traditional stone pot in which the dish is prepared.
Abgoosht was created as a peasant dish because of the inexpensive ingredients used to prepare it. Locals would usually put all the meat pieces in a pot with vegetables such as potatoes, tomatoes, etc., and cook it on a low flame. Then the liquid or broth is eaten like a soup while the meat and vegetables are mashed together and served with bread, onions, and fresh garlic.
It is a great comfort food and a healthy option for someone looking to expand their taste palate to more traditional dishes. Abgoosht does not require much expertise or grueling hours in the kitchen and can be effortlessly enjoyed with family or friends.
Recently, acai and acai bowls have been gaining popularity. Acai is native to the South American rainforests. This fruit is a luscious deep purple, with an inner yellow flesh with a large seed inside. The flavor is often compared to blueberries due to its earthy-sweet taste.
Like most fruits, acai is rich in nutrients and has some fantastic antioxidants such as anthocyanin. Acai is also rich in fiber and low in sugar, making it a healthy alternative to sugar-laden desserts. So, are you ready to try your acai bowl for breakfast? Make sure that you use frozen acai puree to create flavorful breakfast adventures for you, as the fruit is known to have a short shelf life.
Acar essentially is a type of pickle. It is a condiment found in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Brunei. Acar is made from different types of vegetables such as carrots, cabbage, beans and is pickled in vinegar along with ground chilies. This south-east Asian version of a pickle is served with a main course such as noodles, fresh rice, curries, and fresh salad.
There are also different variations of acar across Asia. In Malaysia, you can find Nyonya and Malay acar. In Thai cuisine, it is called achat, and in a traditional Indian thali you would find it as Mughlai Achar.
So, would you like to try this alongside a curry or with some freshly boiled rice?
Acarajé, famous for its African heritage, is a street food found in Salvad, in the state of Bahia, Brazil. Acarajé is a ball of black-eyed peas deep-fried into a fritter. After deep-frying, they are traditionally cut in half and filled with various fillings or a paste called vatapa. The filling includes shrimps, cashews, palm oil, and some spices. It is similar to the South Asian idli or dosa.
Acarajé has a dominant flavor, with a tangy punch combined with the sweet and earthy taste of the beans. Ready to take a trip to Brazil to explore the tangy Acarajé or want to try it out by making this popular street food at home?
If you are familiar with Mexican cuisine, you must have heard about adobo. But is it a seasoning, a complete dish, or a sauce? Adobo can refer to any of the three and depends on where you are when you ask for adobo.
In Spanish households, adobo is a seasoning used to marinate and preserve the flavor of the meat. It includes vinegar, garlic, oregano, paprika, and some salt. A Mexican adobo, on the other hand, is like a sauce, which is also used to marinate meat for grilling. The Mexican version includes tomatoes and chilies as well as the Spanish adobo ingredients.
In the Philippines, adobo refers to a complete main dish. It has an extraordinary place in Filipino culture and is considered their national dish, made using seafood, meat, and vegetables. These are marinated in a mixture made of soya sauce, garlic, and vinegar, fried and soaked in the marinade.
Afelia takes you to magnificent Greece. This is a traditional Greek dish that, like any comfort food, is easy to make and packed with flavors. Afelia is marinated pork drenched in red wine and cooked over a low flame. The hero of this dish is freshly ground coriander seeds which have a more robust flavor than cilantro leaves.
Although pretty fairly easy to cook, the pork needs to be marinated overnight to ensure that it is tender and filled with flavor. Afelia is perfect for a summer day; served with freshly boiled rice, a spoonful of yogurt, and a side of pork chops, it makes a flavorsome summer meal. With Afelia, you can add a traditional Greek dish to your weekly menu.
This Filipino dish has its influences from Spanish culture, and features chicken in a tomato-based sauce. The chicken is fried in a pan with a minimum amount of oil and then stewed in tomato puree with other ingredients that may include peas, carrots, and peppers. It is served with rice.
Usually, afritada is served on special occasions and considered a celebratory dish. The next time you are thinking of trying out something different, explore this Spanish-inspired dish.
Alambre is a popular comfort food in Mexico and a versatile meat dish. It is favored mainly because of the way that the meat is cooked. Alambre means “wire,” which refers to the cooking method of alambre where the ingredients are skewered and grilled to prepare the dish.
If you are a fan of tacos and fajitas, you must try out alambre. The grilled lamb, pork, beef, tomatoes, cheese, and peppers are topped with lime and served with flour tortillas. This amazing Mexican dish can be easily prepared and enjoyed if you do not mind slicing and chopping.
The next time you crave some tacos, try out some alambre instead to enjoy a meal packed with flavor.
9. Alinazik Kebab
You may have tried a traditional Mughlai kebab, but have you heard of the great Alinazik Kebab? Sounds royal, right? The Alinazik Kebab is a time-honored Turkish Kebab made from garlic yogurt, a smoked eggplant and tender lamb.
The star of these kebabs is the eggplant which gives the kebabs the traditional smoky flavor. Alnazik Kebabs are usually served with rice pilaf or fried vegetables and are a must-try if you are a fan of kebabs in all their different forms!
Originating from Asia, almonds come from almond trees. These are nuts have a creamy taste and are commonly consumed toasted, raw, or added in savory dishes. Almonds are eaten with their peels on to get the most of their nutrients. For those looking for derivatives of these products, almond milk, flour, oil, and butter are frequent staples to add protein and healthy fats to a vegetarian diet.
11. Aloo Goobi
This simple but nutritious South Asian dish is a vegetarian favorite. Aloo refers to potatoes, and goobi means “cauliflower”, and aloo goobi is a gravy combination of potatoes and cauliflower.
The dish is trendy in India and is usually garnished with several popular Indian spices. It is straightforward to make, and a staple in most Indian households. This comfort food originated from Punjab and is served with piping hot, fresh roti bread or naan bread, and chutney.
12. Aloo Gosht
Aloo gosht is a cuisine normally found in Pakistani and North Indian households. It comprises potatoes (aloo) and meat (gosht). It’s a stew or curry usually made with goat meat, aloo slices, and served with boiled rice or roti, traditional Pakistani bread.
The meat is cooked with onions, tomatoes, and ginger garlic paste over a low flame. Once the meat becomes tender, aloo or potatoes are added and cooked until soft. The consistency of the curry varies according to personal preference and can be either thick if eaten with roti or a bit runny if eaten with rice.
If you are looking to add traditional Pakistani cuisine to your menu, then aloo gosht is something you need to try out.
Amanatsus are often called the fruit of dreams, and are a rich, flavorful version of oranges. Amanatsus are usually available in Japan from summer till spring. These are best eaten fresh and are also used to make juice. The zest can be used in cooking, and the citrusy fruit pairs well with salmon, noodles, nuts, sashimi, and poultry.
Amatriciana is an Italian traditional pasta dish that originated in or was adapted in Rome. Amatriciana is a dish made with classic ingredients such as guanciale, tomato sauce, and pecorino.
This meal can be cooked with any sort of pasta, although spaghetti is commonly used in America. The pasta dish has an earthy and clean taste, which reflects its rural origin.
Taking its name from the Greek “Food of the Gods”, Ambrosia is a variety of fruit salads originating in the Southern United States. Americans love the flavorful blend of canned fruits, fresh pineapples, mandarin orange slices, marshmallows, coconut bits, and some orange sections. After eating fried chicken and potato salad, ambrosia is the dessert of choice for a refreshing appetizer after a hefty meal.
Amplang is a popular snack commonly found in Indonesia and Malaysia; areas where the seafood is abundant. Amplang are primarily fish crackers and are also known as kerupuk kuku macan. These crackers are made with a batter consisting of a flat fish or mackerel and starch fried in the form of ping pong balls or a different shape.
The crackers are great to have with a rich, creamy soup or stew but can also be enjoyed on their own. To try an amplang, you do not have to take a trip to Malaysia. These ready-to-eat snacks are widely available in several online stores. They come in several different flavors, including crab and seaweed flavor.
Anchovies are small forage fishes found predominantly in salt waters. These fish are pretty salty, so they are usually used in small quantities to add flavors to dishes. Because anchovies blend easily into a sauce, they provide a particular flavor to puttanesca or spaghetti. They are also a popular topping in pizza, onion tarts, and pissaladière. Anchovies make great additions to sandwiches with lettuce, aioli, and tomato.
In Asia, anchovies are used to form fish paste that is used to give a umami flavor to chili sauce, fried rice, and other dishes.
Appams are essentially crepes made from fermented rice and coconut batter. They are commonly found in South India, particularly Kerala and even as far as Sri Lanka, and are a breakfast or lunch dish. The traditional, classic appams are made in a cast iron pan to give them a round shape and are soft-centered with crispy edges.
Appams come in various shapes and sizes, with varying quantities of fermented rice and coconut used to make the batter. Appams are very light and best eaten with curries, korma, stew, and sambal. They can also be enjoyed with the traditional Indian chutneys. Vattayapam is a sweet form of appam that may be eaten on its own as a dessert after the main dish.
19. Apple Cider Vinegar
Also known as cider vinegar, apple cider vinegar comes from fermented apple juice. Polyphenols in apples are said to help fight toxins, free radicals, and counter cell destruction. Apple cider vinegar is a traditional home remedy for sore throats, constipation, and for weight loss. It can also be used as a facial toner and hair tonic.
Apple cider vinegar is typically used to dress salads, marinades, and condiments. Pickled foods can also contain cider vinegar for preserving the food.
20. Apple Pie
Apple pie is a must-have dessert for any truly American holidays and celebrations. But what we miss out often is that the classic old apple pie is not as American as we may think it is! Apple pie originated in England, with influences from France, the Netherlands, and even the Ottoman Empire.
Apple pie also has several variations, including the Dutch and French versions, with slight differences from the classic.
Apricots are fruits commonly used in herbal medicines. Ingredients in this fruit are believed to prevent asthma, constipation, and infertility. Each fruit contains fiber and essential nutrients such as vitamins A and C. To get the most nutrition, eat it whole and unpeeled. Apricots can be eaten as snacks or used in several dishes including desserts, tagines with rice, or mixed with other fruits on top of smoothies.
Arepa is a trendy traditional Colombian street food dish. These are round, savory corn cakes that are extremely easy to prepare and crunchy but soft and fluffy inside. These South American savory delights can have fillings, including meat, beans, pumpkin, cheese, etc. They resemble English muffins and are eaten as a snack in the evening or during breakfast.
There are different ways of preparing arepas, including frying, baking, and boiling, but the most common way of cooking them is over a griddle or grill. Add these Colombian arepas to your breakfast table and enjoy them with almost any filling or topping that you choose!
Arrowleaf clover is commonly planted annually with ryegrass and small grains. These plants contain essential vitamins, minerals, and beta carotene that can be consumed raw or boiled. Various Native American tribes have made it a mainstay in their diets by eating the roots, branches, and blooms. Arrowleaf can be blended with other teas and even drunk as a coffee substitute.
The green artichoke is a species of thistle, where the flower buds that have not yet bloomed are harvested for cooking. Artichoke has a bitter taste when eaten raw. However, when it is cooked, the artichoke tastes like asparagus or Brussel sprouts with a hint of nut.
The artichoke or ‘heart’ center is used in dishes with melted butter, cheese (Parmesan or feta), and other vegetables like sundried tomatoes, eggplant, potatoes, and arugula. You can also add avocado to these vegetables to give them a unique twist.
Arugula, also known as rocket, is an edible leaf vegetable with a bitter, tart, and peppery flavor. You can eat arugula raw or cooked, and use raw arugula with lettuce to give it an extra flavor. Mature arugula has a pungent taste and is often used in sandwiches and lettuce blends. You can also cook, blanch, or sauté the leaves and add them to dishes like pasta and soups.
Aseed lets you explore the authentic flavors of everyday Yemeni cuisine. This Arab-style dish is high in energy and carbohydrates. It is a giant dumpling that is eaten by hand and shared with others. The dish can be either sweet or savory and harks back to the Bedouin lifestyle of Arabs as they needed fulfilling meals during long journeys.
Asinan is an Indonesian side dish passed down through generations. Asin is a word that means “salt” and refers to the process of preserving food with salty water. Asinan is a pickled fruit or vegetable commonly served with Indonesian dishes.
Asinan is famous for being a byproduct of multiple cultural influences in Java, where the fruit version is said to have originated from Jakarta and the vegetable version from Bogor. Asinan are typically served with a peanut chutney/sauce that is sweet and sour.
Also coined as garden asparagus, this sparrow grass is a commonly used spring vegetable. Asparagus is high in antioxidants, fiber, and vitamins. It can be cooked or eaten raw but most people prefer cooked asparagus because it is easier to chew.
Asparagus can be thinly sliced or marinated to give dishes extra zing. You can top it with melted cheese or serve it as a side dish. Asparagus has a distinct scent which can be detected on the body for a day or two after consuming it!
Atis, commonly known as custard apple, is a green fruit with a cone shape. The leathery outer covering protects the creamy, custard-like meat inside.
The fruit is normally found in places with high altitudes. The flavor of this fruit is sweet and similar to pineapple or banana. It is generally cut in half and scooped with a spoon to enjoy the custard-like flesh.
Atis is rich in fiber, vitamins, and several minerals. The health benefits of eating this fruit include improving your heart health and helping to maintain blood sugar levels. It is also known to be beneficial for your skin and hair.
Avocado is a fruit from south-central Mexico up to Guatemala and mainly eaten as a healthy fat source in weight loss diets because of its high unsaturated fat content. Avocado also contains essential nutrients such as vitamin C, K, B6, niacin, pantothenic acid, and potassium, to name a few.
Avocado is usually eaten with some salt and pepper or lemon juice. You can also get creative and use it in salads or add it to toast for a quick bite.
31. Ayam Betutu
Bali is well-known as the perfect holiday destination, whether you are planning a solo or a family trip. But did you know that Bali is also known for its fantastic cuisine?
Ayam betutu is an authentic Balinese dish loved by locals and tourists alike. It is rich and flavorful and seasoned with multiple spices. Ayam betutu is made from a whole chicken filled with traditional Balinese ingredients and spices. It is then baked in a fire husk and served with condiments such as vegetables, nuts, sambal and, of course, rice.
This dish is also found in temple ceremonies and has a spicy aroma. You can try this delightful dish at home and add a touch of Bali to your weekly menu.