Eat Like a Local in Chicago – Must-Try Chicago Dishes

People often visit other countries to see and experience all their culture and diversity. A large part of culture is to be found with the history, which you can find in museums and inside old fortresses and buildings. But, the other, more important part of a people’s culture is to be found with the people, or specifically, their own rituals. The most interesting of those rituals are related to food, of course.

There is nothing like eating local cuisine and discovering all the tastes of a new culture. Chicago has lots of culture, and various culture at that. For those visiting, they could experience local dishes, if only they knew where to go and what to eat. Here is what you must try if you are visiting Chicago.

The Chicago Hot Dog

When you think of a hot dog, you usually think of having a weenie in a bun, with mustard and ketchup, right? That is how most hot dogs are made. But, Chicago has always done it their own way. You can try it almost anywhere, but for the iconic experience, find a Portillo’s and try it there. Be warned, it is without ketchup. You do get mustard, a weenie and a steamed bun, but also relish, pickles, fresh tomatoes, chopped onions and peppers. The Chicago hot dog actually has lots of vegetables, which is great for your health. The bread is often filled with poppy seeds. 

The Chicago Pizza

Chicago does a lot of food their own way. They make deep dish pizzas, which are loaded with lots of goodness. Chicago has rivaling pizzerias, so if you are planning on visiting and are a lover of pizzas, you should definitely try one of them, or actually, all of them. Depending on what you like, they make the crust differently, so you have a choice of stuffed crust, really stuffed, from Giordano’s, pies covered with sauce from Gino’s East and a crust which is buttery smooth out of Lou Mallati’s. All of these pizzerias make great pizzas and the real treat is finding the one you like the most. 

Jibarito – A Puerto Rico Special

Want a different kind of sandwich? This is your treat. It is made out of plantains instead of bread, at least, that is your crust/bun. The filling is according to your own choice, whether meat, vegetables or even seafood. The treat was actually first made in Chicago, and you can find it in one of the authentic restaurants which serve it, called La Bomba. 

Al’s Italian Beef

Al’s Italian Beef makes sandwiches out of beef and it is a special for carnivores. They make various things out of beef, not just sandwiches. You can try their tasty meals in different locations, but make sure to find an Al’s if you want the real deal. The peppers, both hot and sweet, make it even more interesting of a meal.

These are some must-try meals which you, well, must try on your next visit to Chicago.