Top-10 Popular Greek Snacks you Should Try
Greek food and delicacies are known to be great. And they sure are! However, what about the snacks? What would Greeks buy from a supermarket or a periptero when they’re feeling peckish? What is something you can buy and actually bring back home with you? Many people have asked me that during my tours, so I’ve made a list with the top-10 popular Greek snacks you should try when visiting Greece!
Please note that this is not a sponsored post. This is just a top-10 Greek snacks list, based on the personal taste of me and my friends. So, there might be Greeks out there that would add or maybe remove a few items. Moreover, some of the snacks are unique in Greece, but several others you can find in other countries as well. Nonetheless, this is a list of amazing Greek snacks that are available everywhere in the country and that are definitely well known by everybody in Greece!
1. Ion Amigdalou
Ion Amigdalou is one of the most popular, all-time classic, Greek snacks. It was first introduced in the 1940s and it quickly became a Greek favourite. It’s a milk chocolate with almonds, a simple yet brilliant combination.
(Greek: Ίον αμυγδάλου)
Chocofreta is a delicious crunchy waffle with cocoa cream filling, covered in milk chocolate. It’s a small snack, easy to carry, and great for any time in the day! Nowadays you can find more flavours, like dark chocolate or Chocofreta with hazelnuts, and more.
3. Caprice Wafer Rolls
This is the taste of Greek childhood. Caprice are crispy wafer rolls with cocoa and hazelnut filling that melts in the mouth. There are several different flavours, but the original is the one with hazelnut and cocoa cream. In the summer you can put them in the freezer and enjoy them as a cool snack!
(Greek: Πουράκια Caprice)
Pasteli, a Greek honey sesame bar, is probably the most ancient snack on the list, since it dates back to ancient Greece. In fact, many people call it the original energy bar! The traditional pasteli consists exclusively of sesame and honey, so it’s a healthy option if you don’t like any added sugar or preservatives etc. in your diet. The texture may vary from chewy to crisp, so buy one according to your preference, though I find that the crisp ones tend to be tastier.
5. Mastic Submarine Sweet
Mastic Submarine Sweet is my personal favourite. In Greek, we call it Mastiha Ypovrichio, which literally means Mastic Submarine. Mastic is a resin obtained from mastic trees, traditionally in Chios Island. Mastic Submarine is a thick, chewy sweet, served on a spoon dipped in a glass of cool water. You lick it, almost like a lollipop, and eventually you also drink the -now subtly flavoured- water. Mastic Submarine Sweet really tastes like a Greek, carefree summer… Nowadays you can also find the sweet with vanilla flavour, but I recommend to try the mastic one, which is the traditional and, I believe, more delicious!
(Greek: Μαστίχα υποβρύχιο)
6. Oregano chips
Oregano chips are fun and delicious! It’s chips with oregano flavour. Along with the simple salt chips, oregano is the most popular flavour in Greece!
(Greek: Πατατάκια ρίγανη)
Tsoureki is a Greek sweet bread that we traditionally eat during Easter. However, it’s also popular as a snack, so you can either find it at bakeries or pastries shops, or even at a supermarket. Tsoureki is normally quite large, however you can look for a tsourekaki (mini tsoureki), which is a single serving. The ones that you’ll find at a bakery are probably going to be fresher, but the prepackaged ones are easier to carry back home and quite tasty as well.
8. Ouzo candy
This one is probably the most random on the list. We’ve all had it as children, given mostly by our grandparents; I never really understood why! Don’t get me wrong, they’re actually delicious, but they taste like Ouzo, which is a strong Greek anise-flavored aperitif. Doesn’t sound like a very “children friendly” snack, yet here we are. Of course, there’s no alcohol in the candy, but I think it’s still quite funny.
(Greek: Καραμέλες ούζο)
9. Greek Mountain Tea
Let’s talk about drinks! I’ll begin with my favourite, which is Greek Mountain Tea. We call it Tsai Tou Vounou, which literally means mountain tea. Greek Mountain Tea is a herbal tea made from a variety of sideritis, a wild herb abundantly found in Greece. Known for its health benefits, it was used in ancient Greece and it’s mentioned by ancient Greek physicians. It has a sweet, mild and refreshing taste, and it’s naturally caffeine-free, so you can enjoy it any time in the day. You can drink it either hot or cold. If you prefer iced tea, you can also find different falvours, such as mountain tea with lemon or mint and more.
(Greek: Τσάι του βουνού)
10. Lemonade and Sour Cherry Soda
No, obviously a lemonade or a sour cherry drink are not unique in Greece. However, these are very popular drinks you can find everywhere in the country. What’s more, the Greek version of these drinks are healthier than most, since they use real fruit juice and little or no artificial colorings or preservatives. They are cool and refreshing, best enjoyed in the hot summer months! Some well known brands are Loux, Epsa, and Three Cents.
(Greek: Λεμονάδα / Βυσσινάδα)
Feeling hungry after reading about all these snacks? Check out the posts of Nikias, a brilliant food photographer, to explore more dishes secrets of Greek cuisine!
Have you tried any of these snacks when visiting Greece? Which one is your favourite?
And to all the Greeks out there, which snack would you add to the list?