Smita Dey

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French Dinner Foods

Traditional foods in France have a significant impact on French people. France is famous for its excellent food and wine.  France has its own cuisine tradition. So, it is natural the dinner foods of France will not be the same as other countries. France has uniqueness for its food culture, habit, and traditional dinner foods as well.

French food is known for its elegance and flavor. Another reason for French Food reaching to the higher extent is French people relies on simple combination and natural flavor of basic ingredients.[1]

“In France, food is sacred.” To them, eating is a celebration. They plan to spend a lot of time at the dinner table. They like to make time to sit down and enjoy food. They choose the freshest, best quality ingredients they can afford while they are cooking.[2]

Staple Foods in France

As the French people use the best and the freshest ingredients to prepare their food, the staple foods and ingredients have a crucial part of making the foods distinctive. Let’s see what the staples and ingredients are.

1. Bread

French people eat a lot of bread. A baguette or French bread is made from basic lean dough. Its individuality is its length and crisp crust.[3]

2. Meat

Meats is crucial for lunch or dinner in France. It can be a form of beef, pork, poultry, or game.

3. Butter

French butter is slightly fermented for extra flavor. It is not only used as a spread and compound butter. It is an essential ingredient in many sauces, cream, veloute, white sauce.[4]

4. Red Wine

French is famous for red wine, as already mentioned in the first paragraph. It is a cooking staple.  It is used in many famous recipes like beef stew, French onion soup, and coq au vin. “Red wine is not only tasty but is said to have antioxidants called reserveratrol.”[5]

5. Shallots

Shallots are types of onion. It looks like garlic but tastes much more like an onion.  It is used as a seasoning in many recipes. Roasted or caramelized shallots accompanying with green beans, veal, fish, filet mignon and chicken are really delicious.

6. Cheese

Cheese is one of the staple foods in France. France is also famous for cheese like wine. 1600 distinct types of cheese are produced in France.[6] It is not made only from cow milk but from the milk of ewes and goats. “They can also range from soft to hard enough to grate, can be either salted or unsalted.”[7]

7. Truffle

Truffle is an underground fungus. It resembles an irregular, rough-skinned potato. It grows chiefly in broadleaved woodland on calcareous soil. It is an expensive ingredient.

8. Turnip

Turnip is another common food in France. In France, turnips are picked in summer when there are small and sweet.

9. Celeriac

It is the main ingredient in the classic French remoulade. It is used in soups and stews.[8]

So, these are the staple foods and ingredients of France. French cuisine would not be able to world famous without these.

Eating is a pleasure for the French people. So, meals in France have a great impact on them. They eat three meals a day and generally do not run after snacks. Let’s see what the meals are and what they eat in their meals.

French Meals

The three meals of France are breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  They take light foods at breakfast. Lunch is heavier and consists of several courses.  Dinner is the formal meal of the day. It also consists of several courses.

Dinner in France

Dinner is the most formal meal of the day. It is the largest meal for the French. The French people usually take their dinner at 7.30 or 8 pm. The people like to take their time at dinner. They like to spend one or two hours eating slowly several courses and chatting with family or friends.[9]

French Dinner Course

French general dinner courses include an aperitif (An alcoholic drink before meal), hors d’oeuvres (soup, vegetables or egg), meat, pasta or crepe are the principal plate, a salad and the salad is served separately from the principal plate, cheese, dessert, and coffee. Popular desserts in France are tarts, chocolate mousse, and profiteroles.[10]

Luscious Traditional French Dinner Foods

French traditional dinner foods are really mouthwatering. Here are some French traditional dinner foods.

1. Soup a’ l’oignon

The French onion soup is based on onion and meat stock, often served with gratinéed with croutons and cheese on top or a large piece of bread.[11]

Soup a loignon
Soup a loignon

2. Coq au vin

This delicious dish is prepared with chicken braised with wine, mushroom, salty pork or bacon, onion, garlic. Sometimes a drop of brandy is added.[12]

Coq au vin
Coq au vin

3. Beef Bourguignon

The yummy dish is also called as Beef Burgundy. It is a stew made of beef braised in red wine, beef broth and it is seasoned with garlic, pearl onions, fresh herbs, and mushrooms.[13] Ready-made pack of beef bourguignon is an easy option to prepare the recipe with less time.

Beef Bourguignon
Beef Bourguignon

4. Flamiche

The dish is a puff pastry tart made with leeks and cream. It resembles a quiche. It is a tart made from a base of low-fat cheese, butter, and eggs. It is eaten hot and is accompanied by Savigny and burgundy wine.  The pizza-like version Flamiche is without the top crust of the pie.[14]


5. Nicoise Salad

The dish is a typical French Salad. It is made with tomatoes, hard-boiled eggs, Nicoise olives, anchovies. The salad is dressed with olive oil. Tuna and green beans are also added.

Nicoise Salad
Nicoise Salad

6. Ratatouille

It is another internationally recognized French dish. It is a stewed vegetable dish and served as a side dish. Tomato, zucchini, eggplant, carrot, garlic, onion, bell peppers, basil, marjoram thyme, and other green herbs are the main ingredients of the recipe.


7. Cassoulet

It is a slow cooked recipe. White beans are stewed slowly with pork or duck. Sausage, mutton goose or any type of meat can be used to prepare the recipe. You can have the recipe with ready pack of cassoulet.


8. Confit De Canard

This comfort French dish is made with a whole duck. The duck is marinated with salt, garlic, and thyme for up to 36 hours. Then it is cooked in low temperature with its own fat.

Confit De Canard
Confit De Canard

9. Basque-Style Chicken

The dish is a full dish. Meat is made tender by using of piperade, bayonne ham sauce, peppers, tomatoes, and Espellete pepper.[15]

Basque Style Chicken
Basque Style Chicken

The most common and French traditional dinner foods are really yummy. If you try one, you cannot forget the taste, So, do not late. Just try and fulfill your appetite.

Regional Dinner Foods in France

However, apart from these foods French has its regional foods. These foods are also world famous. Here is glimpse of some foods.

Provencal Dinner Foods

Provence is known for lavender fields and olive groves. Provencal cuisine features plenty of fish vegetables, olive oil, garlic, and herbs. Probably “Bouillabaisse” is the most famous dish.  It is a fish stew dish. Another Popular dish “Petite Farcie” –assorted with vegetables, from tomatoes to peppers, and stuff with minced meat.[16]

Normandy Dinner Foods

Normandy and Brittany are known for a variety of sea food and shell fish. There are plenty of apples in Normand cuisine.  Chicken roasted with apples, “TarteAux Pommes” (Apple tart) are the famous Normandy foods.

Brittany Dinner Foods

Brittany is known for its crepes. These are made with buckwheat flour. The dish is served with eggs, ham, and cheese.[17]

These dishes are not only famous in regions. These are also famous and celebrated all over France and the world as well.


I am sure; if you have not tasted the French traditional dinner foods yet, you are planning to try these. You can judge then why French dinner foods are such world- famous. You can share with your friends; I assure it will help them to have a good choice of French dinner foods. It is also helpful to my friends who are planning to travel to France.