Köttbullar
Köttbullar by erik forsberg (CC BY-NC)

20 Dishes Every Meat Eater Should Try at Least Once

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Köttbullar
Köttbullar by erik forsberg (CC BY-NC)

Match One's Meat

When it comes to mealtime, many of us stick with our tried-and-true favorite foods. But it's worth branching out and experimenting with new dishes, whether they're prepared at home or in a restaurant. If you're a meat eater, we've put together a list of delicious, savory dishes from around the world you should try at least once in your life, along with recipes to perfect them at home.

Related: 17 Places to Order Pork, Steaks, and Other Meats Online

Burnt Ends Special
Burnt Ends Special by jpellgen (@1179_jp) (CC BY-NC-ND)

Kansas City Burnt Ends

United States
Boasting the most barbecue restaurants per capita of any major U.S. city, Kansas City has shaped America's culinary landscape. There's no better way to sample its barbecue than with a plate of burnt ends. While butchers once discarded this meat, these bites of beef brisket, caramelized and smoky on the outside and tender on the inside, are now considered a delicacy usually served chopped and smothered in the city's world-famous barbecue sauce. If you can't make it to town for the real deal, this recipe should hold you over.

Recipe: Food Network

Jamón Ibérico
ManuelVelasco/istockphoto

Jamón Ibérico

Spain
Few food experiences will match a ribbon of acorn-rich fat dissolving into savory bliss on your tongue. Jamón Ibérico, or "Iberian ham" (also known as Spanish ham), is a unique type of dry-cured leg of pork made in Spain and Portugal through a strictly regulated and time-honored process. Made from farm-raised black Iberian pigs that roam freely across pastures and feast on sweet acorns fallen from trees, corn, and other feed, the resulting dark red, marbled cured ham is sweet, nutty, and slightly salty. Here's what to look for and where to buy this coveted Spanish ham.

Recipe: Amigo Foods

Jerk Chicken
Brent Hofacker/shutterstock

Jerk Chicken

Jamaica
Jamaica is famous for its jerk style of marinating or rubbing chicken or pork with a hot spice mixture, marked by allspice, Scotch bonnet peppers (similar to habanero chili peppers), and other ingredients, then grilled or barbecued with a distinctively robust smoky and spicy flavor profile. This spicy, grilled meat dish is mostly associated with Jamaica, but jerk huts can be found across the Caribbean. Serve yours with sides of rice, beans, plantains, sweet potatoes, or Jamaican cornbread fritters called "festival."

Recipe: Curious Cuisiniere

Related: The 17 Spiciest Foods Around the World

Homemade Barbecue Korean Beef Bulgogi with White Rice
bhofack2/istockphoto

Bulgogi

South Korea
One of the most well-known traditional Korean dishes, Bulgogi, which means "fire meat," can be prepared with pork or chicken, but is usually made with thin, marinated slices of beef (often sirloin, ribeye, or brisket) grilled quickly over an open-flame barbecue or piping hot stovetop griddle. Also known as Korean barbecue beef, there are many regional variations, but its hallmark is a slightly sweet flavor from a sugar-and-soy sauce marinade. The dish is usually accompanied by rice, lettuce leaves, scallion pancakes, kimchi, and a fiery hot condiment called gochujang.

Recipe: Korean Bapsang

Porchetta
THEPALMER/istockphoto

Porchetta

Italy
The traditional Italian porchetta, which originated in central Italy, is a moist, boneless pork roast considered a festive dish but now prepared all over the country as a favorite street food, served on its own or as a sandwich. The savory roast dish is prepared by deboning a piglet or fully grown pig, seasoned generously with salt, garlic, rosemary, fennel seeds, and other herbs, and stuffed with liver, wild fennel, fat, or pieces of skin and meat, depending on the region. The meat is rolled up, spitted, and roasted slowly over a wood fire for at least eight hours. Thin sliced, juicy pork can be served hot or cold with bread.

Recipe: The New York Times

Goulash
GMVozd/istockphoto

Goulash

Hungary
Hungary's national dish of goulash, or gulyás (meaning "herdsman"), traces back to the 9th century when the stew was made during cattle drives in harsh conditions. Meat, traditionally tender beef, is simmered in a rich paprika-infused broth alongside vegetables such as onions, bell peppers, carrots, celery, potatoes, and tomatoes. But the meaty stew didn't get its rich red color until Turks invaded and introduced paprika to the country during the 16th century. This well-known dish is popular outside the Hungarian borders, but is often synonymous with a thick stew. True Hungarian goulash is a hearty soup served as a main course with bread or csipetke pasta. Try this belly-warming Hungarian goulash recipe on a cold winter night.

Recipe: Curious Cuisiniere

Related: The Surprising History of the Humble Hamburger

Carnitas tacos with red onion and raw salsa verde. Mexican slow cooked pork dish from Michoacan with fresh green salsa
Robert Patrick Briggs/istockphoto

Carnitas

Mexico
Authentic carnitas — juicy, shredded pork with crispy, flavorful edges — hails from Michoacán in central Mexico, where the dish can be found everywhere from street stalls to upscale restaurants. A staple in Mexican cuisine, carnitas are made by delicately seasoning then braising or slow-cooking pork (typically front sections or pork shoulder) in its own fat until fully tender. The meat is gently shredded with a fork and pan-fried to golden, crispy perfection. Fill tortillas with this tasty Mexican slow-cooked pork and accompany with a squeeze of lime, chopped onion and cilantro, and salsa.

Recipe: Recipe Tin Eats

Related: 30 Cheap, Delicious Ways to Fill Your Tacos

Lomo Saltado
Juanmonino/istockphoto

Lomo Saltado

Peru
This popular Peruvian dish consists of stir-fried marinated strips of sirloin or beef tenderloin with red onions, yellow Peruvian chilis, and tomatoes, and is typically served with french fries and white rice on the side. Thanks to an influx of Chinese immigrants during the 19th century, some Chinese cooking techniques were balanced with Peruvian culinary methods and ingredients to create dishes such as lomo saltado.

Recipe: Food52

Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili 5of5
Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili 5of5 by Breville USA (CC BY)

Cincinnati Chili

United States
Deemed one of the "20 most iconic foods in America" by the Smithsonian, Cincinnati chili is a popular dish made with a thin, Mediterranean-spiced meat sauce with unique flavors such as cinnamon, allspice, Worcestershire sauce, and chocolate or cocoa. It's typically served as a topping for spaghetti or hot dogs, both said to be invented by Macedonian immigrant restaurateurs in the 1920s. Chili served over spaghetti is topped with a combination of shredded cheddar, fried beans, onions, and oyster crackers. Visit one of the Ohio city's more than 200 chili joints or try this recipe for the unofficial grub of Cincinnati.

Recipe: Simply Recipes

Tandoori Chicken
Sumit.Kumar.99/shutterstock

Tandoori Chicken

India
There are many Indian meat dishes worth trying, but Tandoori chicken might be one of the most popular of the cuisine. Derived from the Persian word "tannur," which is related to "fire," the dish is prepared with chicken marinated with yogurt and spices such as garam masala, coriander powder, pepper powder, turmeric, chili powder, and salt, then skewered and traditionally roasted at high temperatures in a cylindrical clay oven called a tandoor. The result is a succulent meat with a smokey flavor.

Recipe: Swasthi's Recipes

Chateaubriand
Chateaubriand by Joselu Blanco (CC BY-NC)

Châteaubriand

France
The meaning of the French term châteaubriand refers to a cut of steak as well as the method of roasting or grilling a thick cut of beef tenderloin. The classic French dish (sometimes called chateaubriand steak) is an exquisite center-cut fillet of beef tenderloin — traditionally grilled between two lesser pieces of meat that are discarded after cooking — served in a red wine sauce or Béarnaise sauce with a side of roasted chateau potatoes.

Recipe: The Spruce Eats

Peking Duck
pengpeng/istockphoto

Peking Duck

China
Prepared since the Imperial era, Peking duck is one of the most sought-after Chinese dishes. Beijing's oldest restaurant specializing in Peking duck, Bianyifang, has been serving the succulent dish since the Jiajing reign of the 16th century — a testament to its enduring popularity. The duck, usually brushed with a mixture of ginger, oil, hoisin sauce, honey, and rice vinegar, is hung then slow-roasted until the skin turns golden and crispy and the meat becomes tender, slightly sweet, and moist. When served, it's often sliced in front of the diners by the cook, with the skin first as an appetizer, followed by the meat accompanied by cucumbers, scallions, hoisin sauce, buns, and pancakes.

Recipe: The Woks of Life

Related: Best Chinese Restaurant in Every State

Köttbullar
Köttbullar by erik forsberg (CC BY-NC)

Köttbullar

Sweden
Sweden's national dish, Köttbullar, originated in Turkey and is based on a recipe King Charles XII brought back in the early 18th century. Swedish meatballs are made out of minced beef mixed with pork or veal, and typically seasoned with onions, salt, pepper, and allspice before browning in hot butter for a crispy brown outside and juicy, tender inside. The dish is traditionally plated with a thick gravy, creamy mashed potatoes, and lingonberry jam, but lighter side dishes such as cucumber salad or red cabbage are also popular.

Recipe: Taste of Home

Baltimore: Chaps Pit Beef - The Raven
Baltimore: Chaps Pit Beef - The Raven by Wally Gobetz (CC BY-NC-ND)

Maryland Pit Beef

United States
In Maryland, specifically Baltimore, the local barbecue specialty is pit beef. Its origins are murky, but it's believed the phenomenon started in the working-class neighborhoods on Baltimore's east side at roadside stands along Pulaski Highway in the 1970s. Pit beef isn't slow-cooked like traditional barbecue; round cuts of beef are grilled quickly over a charcoal fire, giving it a distinctive smoky flavor you can't get anywhere else, with a crusty, slightly charred outside and juicy, almost rare inside. The meat is shaved into thin, pink strips, then piled high on a Kaiser roll or rye bread, accompanied by a creamy tiger sauce (horseradish and mayonnaise) and thin-sliced raw onion. Baltimore-style pit beef is rarely found outside Maryland, but you can take a stab at this recipe with your at-home smoker.

Recipe: Amazing Ribs

Related: 40 Mouthwatering Roast Beef Sandwiches Across America

Cook Preparing a Turkish Doner Kebab
tolgaildun/istockphoto

Döner Kebab

Turkey
With origins in the Middle East, kebab meat dishes have numerous popular variants around the world. The kebab, or kebap, is believed to have originated in Turkey with soldiers cooking freshly hunted meat over open fires, and Turkish kebab varieties range from the more well-known shish and döner to regional specialties such as Alinazik, İskender, and çöp şis. The döner kebab is made of seasoned meat cooked slowly on a vertical rotisserie with the outer layer sliced into thin shavings as it cooks, then served on a plate or in a flatbread sandwich with vegetables such as sumac onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, and sauce. Originally, döner was made exclusively with lamb, but today you'll find lamb and beef combinations in Istanbul. You can find this Turkish dish in many restaurants across the world.

Recipe: Give Recipe

Beef Stroganoff
DebbiSmirnoff/istockphoto

Beef Stroganoff

Russia
Although Russian in origin, beef stroganoff is said to be a 19th century invention by French chefs working for the Stroganov family (French spelling: Stroganoff), influential Russian merchants. Made with lightly floured and sautéed cubes or strips of beef and sliced mushrooms and onions served in a sauce with smetana, a type of sour cream from Central and Eastern Europe, the dish has become a household staple. Versions can be found all over the world. It's traditionally served with potato straws, but also rice pilaf, egg noodles, or mashed potatoes.

Recipe: Curious Cuisiniere

traditional tajine with meat, onion, dried grape and cinnamon
marcomayer/istockphoto

Tagine

Morocco
Revered for its balance of sweet and savory flavors, tagine has been a staple of Moroccan food for centuries and is common throughout the North African region of Maghreb, which includes Algeria and Tunisia. Slow-cooked savory stews made with meat, poultry, or fish are cooked with vegetables, dried fruit, nuts, and aromatic spices such as turmeric, cinnamon, saffron, ginger, and cumin, and served in the traditional ceramic or unglazed clay vessel it's cooked in (and from which it takes its name). The result is a mouthwatering, fragrant meal. There are plenty of simplified meaty Moroccan stews to try at home. from braised chicken to lamb to meatball.

Recipe: The Spruce Eats

Wiener Schnitzel
bhofack2/istockphoto

Wiener Schnitzel

Austria
Perhaps one of the best-known dishes of Austria and specialties in Viennese cuisine, wiener schnitzel is a thin, breaded, and pan-fried veal cutlet. It's also a dish protected by Austrian law — it must be prepared with veal or it cannot be called wiener schnitzel. Thinly pounded veal is lightly coated in a crust of flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs. Although it's deep-fried in clarified butter or lard, several steps are key to keeping the dish light and tender, such as beating the eggs thoroughly and pounding the meat thinly. It's traditionally plated with a lemon wedge, and often a simple potato salad, cucumber salad, or french fries.

Recipe: The Spruce Eats

Moussaka
ivanmateev/istockphoto

Moussaka

Greece
The epitome of Greek comfort food, moussaka is lighter on the meat than some recipes on this list — but hardly complete without it. Moussaka is a hearty sliced eggplant casserole layered with juicy ground lamb or beef cooked in a tomato sauce and potatoes, topped with a thick layer of rich béchamel sauce that becomes golden brown and crusty in the oven. While there are many local and regional variations, it's traditionally baked as a special treat for guests and family on festive days.

Recipe: The Mediterranean Dish

Lutong Bahay - Chicken Adobo
Lutong Bahay - Chicken Adobo by dbgg1979 (CC BY)

Adobo

Philippines
One of the most popular Filipino dishes — widely (and unofficially) considered to be the national dish of the Philippines — adobo usually consists of seared chicken, pork, or a combination stewed or braised in a sauce of vinegar, soy sauce, bay leaf, black peppercorns, and garlic. It's left to simmer in the marinade over low heat for hours for a truly succulent meat dish in a thick, savory sauce. Every region and even restaurant in the Philippines has their own take, some using more exotic ingredients such as chili peppers, lemongrass, coconut milk, and crocodile or frog meat, but the Spanish-influenced dish always incorporates vinegar and is served over a bed of fluffy white rice to complement its sweet and tangy sauce.

Recipe: Recipe Tin Eats