When visiting New Zealand, there are some foods you must try as part of your
experience. Each food listed below is uniquely Kiwi (Don’t let any Aussies tell
you differently!). Be warned – the pineapple lumps are addictive.
1. Pineapple Lumps are a flavoured chocolate covered
confectionery with a soft, chewy pineapple-flavoured middle that are unique to
2. Hokey Pokey is a flavour of ice cream in Australia and
New Zealand and consisting of plain vanilla ice cream with small, solid lumps of
sponge toffee - known as "hokey pokey" in Australia and New Zealand. It is the
most popular flavour after plain vanilla in New Zealand!
3. L&P — A popular soft drink, Lemon &
Paeroa, also known as L&P, is a sweet soft drink
manufactured in New Zealand. Traditionally made by combining lemon juice with
carbonated mineral water from the town of Paeroa, L&P can be found only in
New Zealand and in specialty New Zealand stores abroad.
4. Lamingtons -A sponge cake cube coated in a layer of
traditionally chocolate icing and desiccated coconut. They are sometimes served
as two halves with a layer of cream and/or strawberry jam between. There is
debate as to its origin – Aussies & Kiwis have differing opinions!
5. Pavlova - A Kiwi food icon – a large cake-sized meringue
filled with fruit and cream. It too is claimed by both Australians and New
Zealanders as their own.
6. Marmite/Vegemite - New Zealand Marmite is significantly
different in taste from UK Marmite – the ingredients include sugar and come in
7. Hangi - Refers to the method of cooking in the ground
with hot stones, or to the underground oven so created, and to the food so
cooked. When you're asked to a hangi, you're actually being invited to a feast
of Maori food cooked in the manner described. Various types of meats and
vegetables, such as kumara or sweet potato, are wrapped in leaves or foil. These
items of wrapped food are then placed in a hole in the ground and cooked with
hot stones. Particularly in New Zealand towns like Rotorua, a number of hotels
often serve hangi, accompanied by Maori music and folk dancing. This is a real
"taste" of Maori culture.
8. Kumara Chips – Kumara is New Zealand’s sweet potato - so
Kumara Chips are otherwise known as Sweet Potato Fries!
9. Whitebait Fritters - The New Zealand whitebait is small,
sweet and tender with a delicate taste. The most popular way of cooking
whitebait in New Zealand is the whitebait fritter, which is essentially an
omelette containing whitebait. Foreigners frequently react with revulsion when
shown uncooked whitebait, which resembles slimy, translucent worms.
10. Cheese Rolls* – A south island treat! A cheese roll is
created by covering a slice of bread in a prepared filling consisting mainly of
grated or sliced cheese, and then rolling it into a tube shape before toasting.
Cheese rolls are a very popular food in Otago and Southland of New Zealand,
where they are commonly found as a menu item at cafeterias and similar food
outlets. They are one of only a very small number of recipes which are specific
to only one of New Zealand's two main islands.
*One of our Backpacker
crew Sharron recently became addicted to these delicacies on her recent road
trip – don’t get her started.
Let us know what your fave Kiwi treat is! We’d love to hear from you.