Venice Carnival Food Favorites!
When you hear the words ‘Venice Carnival’, the first things that come to mind are the incredible costumes and masks, or the luxurious masquerade balls inside ancient Venetian palaces. But masks and balls are not the only things that make Venice Carnival one of the best in the world. This is also the period where you are encouraged to indulge in the most delicious traditional sweets that you can’t eat during the rest of the year.
This is why we have written this article, which is totally dedicated to the traditional Venice Carnival sweets! Carnival is historically the period that precedes 40 days of Lent prior to Easter. It is a time when you can indulge in pleasure and excess, especially when it comes to food! Historically people would load up with food before the long period of abstinence and sacrifice begins.
Venice Carnival had a reputation for its decadence and overindulgence, so this is your opportunity to overindulge and not feel bad. Venetian Carnival sweets are as delicious as they are rich in calories but you don’t worry about your diet. Is there a better city to pig out and then spend the day walking around taking in the city’s sights?
Recommended Reading: Your Ultimate Guide to Venice Carnival
Frittelle: The national sweet of Veneto!
A local Venetian specialty that you absolutely must try during carnival is called Fritelle, or fritole, which is a carnival food tradition from the La Serenissima Republic. Frittella has become the national sweet of Veneto. Fritelle literally means fritters and is a type of fried donut that begins showing up a few weeks prior to carnival.
It can be filled or not, rolled in cane sugar or dusted with powdered sugar. The Nutella filled ones, as well as the chocolate cream and rum ones are the most popular, but they can also be filled with raisins, cream or apple slices.
You can find it in every bakery and pastry shop in Venice during Carnival. They disappear as soon as carnival ends and won’t return until the following year’s carnival, so eat up! You just have to decide what flavor you prefer!
Castagnole: The Traditional Venice Carnival Food!
Another traditional desert is a plate of castagnole. These are little fried balls of dough, served with icing sugar. Carnival wouldn’t be complete without a plate of castagnole. This dates back to the 18th century and is not just a symbol of carnival in Venice, but in the whole of Italy.
But be warned this desert is so good that one castagnola always leads to another, there is no way that you can have the self-discipline to not indulge in this sweet addiction. This recipe is so easy that you can easily make them at your own place when you leave Venice.
Related: The Foodie’s Guide to Venice
Galani: A traditional Venice Carnival Dessert
The other Venetian dessert that you absolutely must try is the galani! Galani is the term we use to call this crispy delicious Venice Carnival dessert. While this desert is famous in Venice, it didn’t originate from here. According to ancient texts, galani was invented during the Roman Empire for the carnival feasting period.
Galani is a deep-fried, flat pastry that isn’t quite as heavy as frittelle. It is made from butter, flour, sugar and eggs and they all have an irregular but nice shape. Try them topped with lots of icing sugar.
If you have a sweet tooth, then you are going to love indulging in these sweet delicacies. Now that you are updated to date with everything about Traditional Venice Carnival Food, why don’t you read our Foodies Guide to Venice Carnival.
Highly Suggested: Traditional Cafés and Pastry Shops Walking Tour
Where to buy Venice Carnival Desserts
Here a small list of our favorite places where you can taste these delicious carnival foods:
Address: Calle S. Pantalon, 3764, 30123 Venezia VE, Italy
Opened in 1886, this is one of the most renowned and famous pastry shops in Venice. It is frequented by Venetians and tourists alike. They have a delicacy of brioche, pastries and generous portions of desserts for low prices.
Address: C. Lunga S. Barnaba, 2867A, 30123 Venezia VE, Italy
Opened in 1956, Nonno Colussi has been making his desserts exclusively in the open laboratory in his shop, including the famous ‘fugassa’, a Venetian focaccia which is a type of Pandoro but a thousand times more genuine and it is soft like a pillow. The sweets of ‘grandfather’ Colussi are super popular, and according to the locals, this is one of the best pastry shops in Venice.
Address: Sestiere di S. Marco, 950, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
Address: Campo S.S. Giovanni e Paolo, 6780, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy
Address: 30100 Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
This shop has a big reputation, the legendary Ermenegildo Rosa Salva would produce the fritoe in the old way, with the buso baked daily. They would then be distributed in the various Rosa Salva stores in Mestre and Venice.
Address: S. Marco, 3994, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
This is one of the last genuine pastry laboratories still existing in Venice. Serving clients for over 30 years, customers have been delighted with the pastry and desserts. They daily bake brioche, frolle, muffins, pies, cakes, pizzas, pretzels and much more.
Address: Campo S. Luca, 4589, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
The Vio Family which runs this has been in business in Venice for over 40 years. Since 1974 they have been selling and producing a high-quality selection of traditional sweets and savories for lunch and aperitifs.
Related Carnival Articles
- Your Ultimate Guide to Venice Carnival
- The Foodie’s Guide to Venice
- Where to stay in Venice during Carnival?
- Venice Carnival Costumes
- Everything you need to know about Venetian Masks!
- What is the history of Venice Carnival?