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Livorno’s typical street food

Livorno’s typical street food

Get a taste of the authentic and flavourful street treats offered by Livorno

Livorno: enjoying life and food on the road

The mild and temperate climate of the city, the sun, the welcoming promenade, the predisposition to socialize and enjoy life, are all elements that, combined with the taste for good things, make the concept of Livorno street food truly extraordinary.

Livornese people indeed love to eat outdoors. From breakfast to dinner, they love to have their meals outside, without giving up, even when they have little time, on the taste and satisfaction of the palate. That’s why in Livorno street food is not just a trend, but an adventure that constantly involves the senses, every day and during any season of the year.

In every corner of the city, stalls and kiosks of all kinds will offer you delicacies with succulent flavors that you can savor while strolling and admiring the surrounding beauties. So, start with your nose up for an unprecedented culinary adventure and let yourself be seduced by the great variety of “fast dishes” and “appetizers” that this city has to offer.

The queen of street food

At the heart of Livorno street food stands the “Torta di Ceci“. A simple and tasty savory cake, crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, made with chickpea flour, water, and extra virgin olive oil. A delight to enjoy on its own, with a sprinkle of pepper, or on “French bread” to create the 5e5, a must of Livornese street cuisine.

The ritual of the sandwich

The 5e5 is in fact the most famous sandwich in Livorno, but certainly not the only one. In fact, Livorno locals adore sandwiches and they have their own school of thought on the subject. First of all, there’s the filling, which must be abundant, rich, and tasty. Sauces, gravies, vegetables, cheeses, tomatoes, onions, etc. always accompany the main ingredient, which can be cold cuts, roast, hamburger, or even a seafood ingredient like carpaccio, tuna, or even octopus. All wrapped in very spacious “whips” of bread, for an explosion of genuine flavors ready to satisfy all palates, from the most rustic to the most refined. Taking a bite of these sandwiches without getting messy can be a challenge, but we assure you it’s worth it!

Seafood, fried foods, small fried foods and aperifried foods

For the people from Livorno, any occasion is good to stop and enjoy a freshly caught seafood or to delight in a small fried food, whether it’s made of squid and calamari or assorted fish. From clams to razor clams, from sea urchins to oysters, from prawns to mussels, all the way to the classic mixed fry, these delicacies are part of the culinary offering of many Livorno kiosks. These small “street food” shops are often open both for lunch and dinner, also catering for aperitifs, or rather, “aperifried foods”, perhaps with a sea view. Savouring these specialities with a glass of wine while taking in the scent of the sea is an authentic trait of Livorno natives. Try it to believe it.

Livorno’s typical street food

Sandwiches for every taste

In Livorno, the decade-long presence of Americans from the Camp Darby military base has brought with it some Made in USA culinary traditions. Hamburgers, for example, were widely popular in the city long before fast food from overseas colonized Europe. Not to mention sandwiches, distant relatives of club sandwiches, which have captured the hearts of Livorno residents for generations. These delicious snacks spread with mayonnaise, often eaten for breakfast as well, are offered with a wide range of fillings. From the classic ones with ham, cheese, and mushrooms, to the more imaginative ones with tuna, egg, pickles, salad, shrimp, omelette, salmon, etc.

Friars and doughnuts

In Livorno, there is a ritual passed down from generation to generation: “bring the child to get a friar or a doughnut at the market“. The “friars” are sweet donuts made of leavened dough, dipped in hot oil and then delicately sprinkled with sugar. Their name derives from their shape, which resembles the friars’ collar. One of the most appreciated protagonists in the varied choice of fried delicacies in Livorno. The doughnuts instead are small balls of leavened dough, fried until they become golden and then filled with sweet creams like chocolate and pastry cream. Absolutely worth trying.

Flatbread and Roschette

The schiacciata is another deliciousness of Livornese street food. It is a greasy focaccia, delightfully salty, crispy on the bottom and tenderly soft when bitten. A real goodness, great on its own, to nibble on while walking, or to be filled with cold cuts and cheese (when just out of the oven with mortadella it’s amazing). In Livorno, every bakery has its own recipe and preparation, more rustic or delicate, baked on a brick, on a paddle, in a pan… stuffed or plain, in short, there is something for everyone’s taste. On the other hand, roschette are a typical snack from Livornese tradition, introduced by Sephardic Jews. They are dry and salty donut-like snacks, similar to taralli but larger, to be nibbled on at any time of the day. These “appetizers”, made without yeast, are a gastronomic work of art based on simple ingredients: various types of flour, extra virgin olive oil, and salt.

Useful informations

  • Who:

    Alone, Children and families, Groups, In pairs, With friends

  • When:

    Autumn, Spring, Summer, Winter

  • What:


  • Other characteristics

    Indoors, Outdoors, Reachable by public transport, Without reservation

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