Traditional Welsh food

Welsh recipes stem from a history of stoic folks celebrated for living off the land.

The food was created to fuel hard working locals and as such, boasts a series of simple dishes, made with nothing but good quality ingredients…

Today, Wales is renowned for its many artisan food manufacturers, quality restaurants and markets galore, all of which complement the traditional Welsh food of the past.

Welsh Rarebit

This dish dates back to the early 18th century, although the recipe itself is said to be much older. Traditionally, it was called ‘Welsh rabbit’ – even though it contains no rabbit at all.

The recipe derives from a South Wales Valleys staple. Encased in the dish is a generous lump of cheese, which is added to a combination of beaten eggs and milk, before being seasoned with salt and pepper.

It is then baked in the oven until the mixture has firmed and the cheese has melted, forming a moreish golden, brown shade.

It’s often nicknamed ‘posh cheese on toast’. Modern recipes are seasoned with paprika, ale, mustard or Worcestershire sauce. One thing that never changes is the fact the ingredients always call for a high quality cheese.

Other variants come in the shape of a dish called ‘buck rarebit’. This is served with a fried egg on top. When served with tomato, it becomes a ‘Blushing Bunny’.

Have a go at creating the recipe yourself at home.

Welsh Cawl

Another popular traditional Welsh dish is Welsh Cawl – a classic Welsh soup – similar to that of a hearty stew. This one-pot dish is considered by many to be the national dish of Wales.

It calls for leeks, potatoes and Welsh lamb.

However, the recipe can differ slightly from season to season. It’s also famously passed down through the generations, with many adding their own twist and ingredients that are local to the area.

The dish is traditionally served with an enthusiastic slice of chunky bread and a good lump of Welsh cheese. You can try your hand at this recipe, using this popular method.

Welsh cheese

The Welsh are famed for their love of cheese. From tangy cheddar to crumbly Caerphilly, there are an array of moreish Welsh cheeses to choose from, many of which make up the ingredient lists in an array of traditional Welsh foods.

One thing is for certain; the locals take their cheese very seriously. In fact, one cheddar is made to a special bespoke recipe that requires a maturing process that lasts an astounding 11 months.

It is then transferred from the creameries to the Slate Caverns in Blaenau Ffestiniog. Once it arrives, it is placed an incredible 500 feet underground and left to age.

This process adds a number of unique flavours and textures to the cheese. It’s so good; it’s won a number of awards!



This popular savoury traditional Welsh food is often nicknamed Welsh caviar. Laverbread (bara lawr), unlike the name would have you believe, contains no bread. In fact, it’s more of a puree made up of laver in the shape of wholesome, edible seaweed.

It boasts a number of health benefits and is full of minerals and vitamins, including vitamin B12. It also contains an abundance of protein and is still low in calories. It’s a popular option for vegetarians as it is plant based.

Most enjoy this dish with toast or seafood. In the past, it has been added to a Welsh breakfast, alongside bacon and eggs. Try your hand at creating laverbread here.

welsh food

Traditional Welsh Cakes

This renowned, delicious delicacy was traditionally created from flour, milk, butter, currants and eggs.

Today, more flavours have been added in the shape of lemon, chocolate and Bailey’s cream liquor.

These delightful treats can be served hot or cold and are usually dusted with icing sugar.

Although they look like scones, they’re far from it as they are cooked on a griddle rather than baked. Try the recipe for yourself here.


Anglesey Salt

Up until the late 18th century, sea salt was harvested on the Menai Straits. Still to this day, the age-old methods of creating the salt exist.
However, they’ve been combined with modern technology to create an even more iconic seasoning, complete with different gradients, textures and flavours.

This salt is found in almost all restaurants in Wales and is a popular gift to bring back when visiting this area.


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