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Food of Monaco: 10 Traditional Monégasque Dishes

Monaco, the second smallest country in the world, is a sovereign city-state located on the French Riviera. Known for its prosperous economy, and is famous for its luxury casinos and shopping, yacht-filled harbor, and prestigious events like the Formula One Monaco Grand Prix and the Monte Carlo Rally.

Monaco is also the most densely populated country in the world, with a population density of 19,331.7 inhabitants per kilometer squared.

Most Popular Dishes of Monaco

The food of Monaco has been largely shaped by the cooking style of Provence, with influences of northern Italian and southern French cooking.

As Monaco is an island with a large fishing industry, much of the cuisine involves seafood, including Bouillabaisse, a fish soup, and Stocafi, a dried cod stew.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are also abundant in Monégasque Cuisine, such as oranges, lemons, tomatoes and leeks. Many of Monaco’s most popular dishes involve fresh vegetables, such as Salade Niçoise and Ratatouille.

Many of the restaurants in Monaco today have international influences, affected by cosmopolitanism, including 25 Michelin starred restaurants.

Barbajuan (Ricotta and Chard Pastry)

Barbajuan (Ricotta and Chard Pastry)

Barbajuan is a Monégasque appetizer made by filling puff pastry with Swiss chard, ricotta, leeks, garlic and herbs, and baking or frying until crisp.

Barbajuan are eaten year-round, but are famously served on the National Day of Monaco, November 19th, because women from Castellar used to sell it in the markets of Monaco.

This dish is similar to an empanada, but with a slightly different filling and shape.

Beignets de Fleurs de Courgettes (Zucchini Flower Fritters)

Beignets de Fleurs de Courgettes (Zucchini Flower Fritters)

Beignets de Fleurs de Courgettes are fritters made with zucchini (courgette) flowers. The zucchini flowers are first dipped into a batter made with milk, eggs and flour, before frying until crispy.

Ratatouille (Vegetable Stew)

Ratatouille (Vegetable Stew)

Ratatouille is a traditional vegetable stew, originating from Nice in France, which is made with layers of aubergines, courgettes, peppers and onions.

This dish is usually served as a side dish, but may also be served as a main meal with bread or rice.

Salade Niçoise (Anchovy Salad)

Salade Niçoise (Anchovy Salad)

Salade Niçoise is made by topping salad leaves with tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, boiled potatoes, tuna fish, olives and anchovies.

Salade Niçoise originated in Nice, France. Traditionally, only raw vegetables are used for this recipe, although cooked green beans and potatoes are commonly included. This salad is usually dressed with olive oil, but some versions of the recipe may use a vinaigrette.

Pissaladière (Caramelised Onion & Anchovy Pie)

Pissaladière (Caramelised Onion & Anchovy Pie)

Pissaladière is a pie originally from Nice, made with caramelised onion & anchovies. Traditionally the anchovies are placed in a diamond shape pattern on top of the pie, but this may change between chefs, the Monégasque version of Pissaladière is often decorated with onions, tomatoes and olives too.

This savory pastry can be found in virtually every bakery and food market across Monaco. Pissaladière can be made into a larger pie which is then sliced, or it can be made into smaller, individual-sized pies.

Fougasse (Sweet Orange Bread)

Fougasse (Sweet Orange Bread)

Fougasse is a small, sweet bread containing orange, nuts, raisins and anise. This sweet treat can usually be found in the local bakeries of Monaco, they are usually decorated with flaked almonds, pine nuts, sugared almonds and anise seeds.

Stocafi (Dried Cod Stew)

Stocafi is made with dried cod which is stewed in tomato sauce and flavored with black olives and other vegetables. To make this dish, the dried cod is traditionally soaked for 24 hours. This stew is often served with crusty baguette to dip into the sauce, or with boiled potatoes on the side.

Bouillabaisse (Fish Soup)

Bouillabaisse (Fish Soup)

Bouillabaisse is a traditional Provençal fish stew made with bony Mediterranean fish, usually several different types of fish in each stew as well as shellfish, combined with onions, tomatoes, garlic, saffron and herbs.

This dish is originally from the French port city of Marseille, but today is popular across France and Monaco.

A traditional way to eat Bouillabaisse is to place slices of toasted French bread rubbed with garlic at the bottom of the soup dish and then pour the soup on top, allowing the bread to absorb the flavors from the soup.

Daube

Daube

Daube is a provencal style beef stew made with beef braised in wine, vegetables, herbs and garlic.

The traditional method of cooking this beef stew involved a ‘daubiere’ which is a terracotta dish with a concave lid. The ingredients are cooked in the daubiere over a low heat for long periods of time to make the beef soft and tender.

Some variations of the traditional Daube recipe also include ingredients like olives, prunes, vinegar or brandy, the recipe changes slightly between families and towns but the core ingredients are consistent.

Tarte Tropezienne

Tarte Tropezienne

Tarte Tropezienne, also called ‘la tarte de Saint-Tropez’, is a sweet brioche cake filled with a thick layer of cream filling.

The cream filling between the brioche layers is a combination of custard and whipped cream whisked together, known as ‘Crème Diplomate’ in France.

Tarte Tropezienne was created in 1955 by Alexandre Micka, an exiled Polish man living in Saint Tropez. It became famous worldwide when French actress and model Brigitte Bardot said that it was her favorite dessert.

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