10 Things to eat in Lampedusa and where

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Joel Fulleda

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

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Lampedusa is an island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, closer to the African coast than to the Italian one, even though it belongs to Sicily. Although not very extensive, it offers those who visit it spectacular and postcard landscapes, becoming an ideal destination for all types of travelers.

Obviously, this is a Sicilian land, but over time it has also been influenced by other cultures here the food is truly something unique, which in turn will make you experience a journey within a journey. In each dish you will still find a great constant: the fish, without a doubt the great protagonist of Lampedusa cuisine!

Are you already hungry right? Here is a list for you 10 things to eat in Lampedusa and where!


  1. Shrimp and mint salad
  2. Spaghetti Alla Bottarga
  3. Pasta with mullet Lampedusana style
  4. Cous Cous with fish and vegetables
  5. Linguine with seafood
  6. Seawater swordfish
  7. Ziti with sardines and fennel
  8. Catch of the day
  9. Cannoli
  10. Granita and Brioche
  11. Where to eat in Lampedusa: best restaurants, typical bars and street food
  12. User questions and comments

1 - Shrimp and mint salad

E' one of the most famous and most loved appetizers!
This recipe, originally from the island, then spread throughout Sicily, with obviously different variations. It is a fresh dish, ideal for hot summer days. It is worth trying at least once! Or as an appetizer or even as a single dish if you are not too hungry because of the heat.

The main ingredient of this recipe is obviously the prawns, which are generally accompanied by celery or salad, always seasoned with a little lemon. Before serving, the dish must rest in the fridge for half an hour and then, before serving, add a little chopped parsley and, of course, the mint leaves.

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: € 10,00
  • Main ingredients: shrimp, celery, mint leaves

2 - Spaghetti alla Bottarga

Let's start with the first courses, starting with these spaghetti. The main ingredient is obviously the amberjack bottarga, then accompanied by lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, basil and wild fennel and spachetti are used as a type of pasta.

Bottarga, used mainly in Sicily, Sardinia and Tuscany, is not a common ingredient and is rather particular: it is obtained by salting and drying tuna roe. Has a very strong, salty and slightly bitter flavor, which not everyone might like.
But trust that this dish is truly delicious and must be tried at least once, and what better occasion than in a restaurant in Lampedusa!

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: € 10,00
  • Main ingredients: amberjack bottarga, spaghetti, wild fennel, lemon, oil

3 - Pasta with red mullet Lampedusana style

Really a very popular dish on the tables of the island's restaurants and recalls the Sicilian seafaring tradition. It is inspired by pasta with Palermo sardines and can be prepared both with long pasta such as spaghetti, and with short pasta such as penne.

Obviously, the great protagonist of this dish are the mullets, not very easy to prepare. They must in fact be well cleaned, scaled, filleted and blanched and then added to the sauce made with fennel and tomato. They are then sautéed together with the pasta and a little extra virgin olive oil. A mouth-watering dish!

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: € 12,00
  • Main ingredients: red mullet, pasta, wild fennel, olive oil, tomato

4 - Cous Cous with fish and vegetables

This can be considered to all intents and purposes a single dish! Of Arab origin and today it is one of the traditional dishes of the island.
It is a recipe that requires a lot of time and work, especially for the preparation of couscous. Also in this case one of the key ingredients is fish!

The Lampedusana version generally includes slices of grouper, Lampedusan capers, olives, cherry tomatoes, a little chilli and oregano and various vegetables such as potatoes, peppers, aubergines, courgettes, celery and carrots. Absolutely to try, you cannot say that you have been to Lampedusa without tasting the cous cous!

  • Recommended to: lunch, dinner, breakfast, snack
  • Average cost: € 20,00
  • Main ingredients: cous cous, grouper, vegetables

5 - Linguine with seafood

The great protagonist is the fish, always fresh! In fact, all the restaurants on the menu have the item "catch of the day". And if you are sitting in a restaurant and you are hungry for good pasta, you cannot but order linguine with seafood, present in every restaurant and always excellent!

Surely you have already eaten them elsewhere, but on the island are a must! For those unfamiliar with it, it is a first course based on linguine and seafood, such as clams, cockles, sea truffles and others, seasoned with a little oil, parsley and, to taste, a little chilli.

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: € 12,00
  • Main ingredients: linguine, seafood

6 - Seawater swordfish

In Lampedusa, swordfish can be found everywhere, both in the first and second courses.
Method of this dish requires the fish to be very fresh, of excellent quality, freshly caught and washed in clean sea water.
Subsequently it is cooked in a pan without oil, thus allowing it to throw out the water it has absorbed while washing it, and you have to turn it over until it dries. Then add lemon juice, garlic, parsley, oregano and a drizzle of olive oil.

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: main courses from € 20,00
  • Main ingredients: swordfish

7 - Ziti with sardines and fennel

There are a classic of Lampedusa and also of Sicilian cuisine. Usually, the types of pasta that are used in the recipe are ziti, bucatini and perciatelli.

Il wild fennel is one of the basic ingredients of the island's culinary tradition, it is in fact used in many recipes.
It grows everywhere on the island, even in the most unlikely places. But it is not only used in food: here in Lampedusa fennel liqueur is produced, a real natural digestive with an excellent fragrance. It is still homemade as it once was.

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: € 12,00
  • Main ingredients: sardines, fennel, pasta

8 - Catch of the day

If you are for lunch or dinner on a beautiful terrace overlooking the sea, you cannot miss the catch of the day! Many restaurants offer this dish, which it therefore varies every day based on what the restaurant has bought or directly caught!

  • Recommended to: Lunch Dinner
  • Average cost: € 20,00
  • Main ingredients: fresh fish

9 - Cannoli

It is one of the most loved desserts in all of Sicily, which you will find really everywhere, in big cities, villages and small islands. It does not need many introductions, certainly almost all of us have tasted at least one in our life.

It is a crispy waffle with a ricotta cream filling.
Perfect to eat at any time of day, in the morning for breakfast, as a mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack and, why not, also to round off lunch and dinner!

  • Recommended to: always
  • Average cost: € 2,00
  • Main ingredients: flour, eggs, sheep's milk ricotta

10 - Granita and Brioche

You cannot fail to have at least one breakfast with the classic granita and brioche! It is a real institution and the best way to start the day! It may seem like a strange combination to some, but trust me, you will love it.

The granita is nothing more than a cold dessert made with water, sugar and fruit.
The pistachio, coffee and lemon ones are also delicious. At breakfast, or as a snack, or at any other time of the day, try it accompanied by a Sicilian brioche, made with egg yeast dough and with vanilla or citrus flavor.

  • Recommended to: breakfast, snack
  • Average cost: € 4,00
  • Main ingredients: water and sugar; yeast dough with egg and aroma

Where to eat in Lampedusa: best restaurants, typical bars and street food

On this island of just 20 square kilometers, obviously there is no shortage of places to eat! Indeed, you will find solutions suitable for all budgets. There Most of the restaurants are located mainly on the waterfront, in the harbor area and in the town center, especially along Via Roma, a reference point also for nightlife.

In the busiest beaches there is always at least one place that offers bar and restaurant service, while some are completely devoid of services and in that case you will have to equip yourself with a packed lunch.
Don't forget to enjoy an aperitif at sunset in one of the bars located on the western side of the island, it will be an experience that you will not easily forget! Here are the best places to eat in Lampedusa:

1 - Il Ritrovo Restaurant

  • Description: located in the center of the city of Lampedusa; offers traditional Lampedusan dishes, fish dishes and land dishes; always fresh ingredients, friendly and helpful staff
  • specialty: spaghetti with scampi, prawns and grains
  • Average price: from € 20,00 per person
  • Address: via Roma, 58 - Get directions / tel: 0922 970414

2 - Giglio Lampedusa restaurant

  • Description: located inside the hotel of the same name, it directly overlooks the beautiful Guitgia beach; offers traditional Lampedusan dishes, based on fish and menus at fixed prices
  • specialty: caponata, sardines a beccafico
  • Average price: from € 20,00 per person
  • Address: via Lido Azzurro, 9 - Get directions / tel: 0922 970093

3 - Ristorante Pizzeria Mir Mar

  • Description: located inside the hotel of the same name, a few steps from the beautiful Guitgia beach, it has a panoramic terrace; offers fish dishes as well as vegetarian alternatives
  • specialty: spaghetti with sardines
  • Average price: from € 15,00 per person
  • Address: via Lido Azzurro, 17 - Get directions / tel: 0922 971008

4 - Friendship Bar

  • Description: located in the center, room with a large terrace; perfect place to start the morning with an excellent breakfast, including brioche and cannoli; also offers pizzas and "pieces" of rotisserie
  • specialty: cannoli, brioche and Sicilian cassata
  • Average price: from € 10,00 per person
  • Address: via Vittorio Emanuele, 60 - Get directions / tel: 0922 970432

5 - Tunez

  • Description: located on the beautiful beach of Cala Croce; ideal place for an aperitif or aperitif at sunset, but also suitable for a lunch break; offers both sandwiches and excellent fish dishes
  • specialty: cocktails and aperitif at sunset
  • Average price: from € 15,00 per person
  • Address: C / da Cala Croce - Get directions / tel: 331 9745537

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