Traveling to Rome means discovering spectacular historical landmarks, visiting fantastic museums, and eating delicious food. A trip to the Italian capital will only be complete if you taste test lots of local food.
Now, it’s time to dive into a side of Roman food that is not often talked about: street food.
Savory Street Food in Rome
The supplì is the most famous street food in Rome. A supplì is a deep-fried ball of rice mixed with tomato sauce and covered in breadcrumbs with a heart of melted mozzarella cheese.
When you break it in two, still hot, a mozzarella string connects the two halves. This is why this street food is also known as supplì al telefono, telephone supplì. The stringy mozzarella is the wire that connects the two halves, like a phone cord.
You can find supplì in any pizza place in Rome, but there are also a few dedicated spots. Try it at Supplì Roma in the neighborhood of Trastevere, at Supplizio in Campo de’ Fiori, or I Supplì dei Coronari close to Piazza Navona.
Meat eaters rejoice. This street food option is the most delicious meat-based treat you’ll eat in Rome and its surroundings.
Porchetta is a boneless pork roast seasoned with garlic and a mix of herbs, including rosemary and fennel. The meat is roasted over wood with the skin on for several hours. The most typical way to eat it is in a sandwich.
Porchetta is originally from Ariccia, a town in the Castelli Romani area south of Rome. Nevertheless, the delicacy is very popular in Rome and its surroundings.
If you happen to visit Rome in September, check out the Porchetta Festival in Ariccia. Otherwise, try it at La Vita è Un Mozzico or Er Buchetto.
4. Pizza al taglio
Pizza al taglio means cut pizza, and it’s widespread across Italy. You’ll likely find a pizza joint in Rome every few hundred meters, so the choice is endless. If you don’t feel like eating a whole pizza but need a pick-me-up while sightseeing in Rome, just grab a slice or two of pizza.
The great thing about this street food in Rome is that it’s vegetarian and vegan-friendly. There are so many topping options that it’s impossible not to find something for your taste.
My favorite chain for pizza al taglio in Rome is Alice Pizza. You’ll find small shops all over the city, and they always have pizza fresh out of the oven with delicious toppings. However, you’ll find many other spots that are also great.
3. Pizza e mortazza
This street food is trendy at fairs and other street events in Rome. Pizza e mortazza consists of a sliced square of pizza base, white pizza or pizza bianca in Italian, filled with bologna, and Mortazza is the roman word for Mortadella.
You don’t need to go to a fair to try this tasty street food in Rome. Many places around the city serve this at any time of the day. Try it at Il Fornaio in Via dei Baullari, Antica Salumeria near the Pantheon, or Forno Campo de’ Fiori.
Trapizzino is the new entry on the Roman street food scene. Born in 2013 in a pizza restaurant in Rome, the trapizzino became popular across Italy and landed even in New York City.
The trapizzino brings together pizza and traditional Italian recipes. The street food consists of a pizza triangle stuffed with various ingredients.
There’s the classic Trapizzino Pollo alla Cacciatora with chicken stew, the Polpetta al sugo with meatballs in tomato sauce, and the Parmigiana di melanzane with the famous eggplant dish, to mention a few classics.
When in Rome, you must try it stuffed with local dishes, such as Coda alla vaccinara, oxtail stew, Trippa alla Romana, tripe Roman-style, or Carciofi alla Romana, artichokes.
1. Baccalà fritto
Baccalà fritto is a popular food in Rome’s Jewish Ghetto. Did you know many recipes that are now traditionally Roman were invented by the Roman-Hebraic community?
The famous battered fried cod can be served as a proper meal but is commonly eaten out of a paper bag as street food. The historical place to try fried codfish is Dar Filettaro a Santa Barbara, in the heart of the Jewish Quarter.
Other popular places to try this tasty street food in Rome are Giggetto and Supplizio, and the latter is one of the best spots for street food in general.
Sweet Street Food in Rome
Rome doesn’t just have savory street food. If you’re craving something sweet, you must try the maritozzo. There’s no other sweet treat that is more traditionally Roman.
The maritozzo is a soft bun filled with whipped cream, and the name derives from the Italian for husband, marito. Traditionally, women would bake these sweet buns for their husbands to carry with them when they went to work the fields.
You can find maritozzo in virtually any bakery in Roma, but there are a few famous spots worth checking out. Try it at Il Maritozzaro, il Maritozzo Rosso, or Regoli Pasticceria.
Last but not least, the gelato couldn’t miss on this list of street food to try in Rome. Though not an exclusively Roman treat, gelato is a must when visiting the Italian capital.
One of my favorite places for gelato in Rome is Gelateria La Romana. Despite the name, this ice cream store was not born in Rome, but in Rimini. Nevertheless, they serve one of the best gelatos in the world if you ask me.
Other great spots for gelato in Rome are Otaleg in Trastevere and Frigidarium in Campo de’ Fiori. However, you’ll find a gelato shop on almost every street corner in Rome.
Plan Your Trip to Rome With Pilot
Now that you learned all about street food in Rome, what are you waiting for? It’s time to start planning your trip to the Italian capital.