Unbelievable Foods that start with the letter U begin here! Yes, U, not Me! 😂 Considering that these foods come from around the world, I admit that most are new to me. This project was pure fun, and I loved each recipe’s uniqueness.
And it wasn’t just fun and games. I learned something new (a lot of somethings, actually), and I could happily make an Immaculate Bites version of each one, especially the ube (purple yam).
Whether you are just trying a novel way to expand your culinary repetiteur or have a theme party to prepare for, this list of U recipes is the one you need. So let’s begin with 26 unbelievably delicious foods that start with the letter U!
Main Dishes that Start With U
1. Umble Pie
This medieval pastry stuffed and baked with wild game offals, such as a deer, is an experience you don’t want to miss. And it’s the perfect fit in your soul-food recipe collection with just a few spice changes. Though the name has evolved from numble (archaic French for offals) to umble, and now humble, you don’t have to take it as an insult the next time someone says you’re eating humble pie. However, I might prefer the classic soul-food chitlins.
Usal or Oosal is a wholesome Indian dish with sprouted peas, lentils, black-eyed beans, or hyacinth beans stir-fried with aromatic spices and a thick gravy. So this vegetarian food that starts with U is definitely on my must-try list.
This amazing Russian soup with fish (which species is not particularly important) also usually has root vegetables (parsley root, leeks, or potatoes). Seasonings like bay leaf, dill, tarragon, fresh parsley, black pepper, saffron, nutmeg, and fennel seed make it truly mouthwatering.
You can make this satisfying breakfast porridge with almost any grain you have on hand. Semolina, whole wheat, rice, corn, you name it, cooks in India have been using upma (also called uppumavu and uppittu) to nourish their families.
OK, so maybe eel hasn’t been on your list of must-try foods, but the Japanese know how to make these guys delicious. And it doesn’t really matter if they’re fresh or saltwater eels.
Now we’re getting closer to my roots. Umngqusho is a versatile South African dish with corn and beans or peas. This filling and nourishing dish is a staple meal in many places.
Side Dishes that Start With the Letter U
Udon is a thick Japanese noodle made from wheat or buckwheat flour, so it’s authentic Asian comfort food. The most straightforward recipe is a hot soup, such as Kake udon, with a mild broth called Kakejiru made from dashi, soy sauce, and mirin.
8. Urad Dal
If you like split pea soup, then this fantastic recipe is for you. Anytime an Indian recipe says dal (lentils, split peas, and beans), you can be sure it will be good. The legumes are dried and pulsed, so they don’t need soaking. Talk about a time-saver.
This Serbian side dish is my kind of recipe. I love that urnebes means a mess. You just throw it all together and know it will taste great. So ramp up your next cookout with a delightful mix of white cheese, hot chili peppers (adjust to taste), salt, and other spices.
I love it when people don’t waste food. Europeans know what to do with leftover whey after making cheese. This ricotta-like cheese is a great snack or spread, and, hey, it’s a food that starts with U.
Indonesian and Micronesian cooking is so flavorful, as this urap recipe demonstrates. It’s a healthy salad with steamed vegetables and seasonings dressed in freshly grated coconut, spices, and tamarind paste.
Sea grapes (or green caviar) are delicious and nutritious; always a good thing together. Seaweed is an undeniable part of Japanese cuisine, and umibudo’s flavor is mildly salty, like kombu and wakame. But they’re so much cuter.
A friend of mine in South America introduced me to this potato-like vegetable. Ulluco (oca) is a staple crop in the Andes, where it grows next to potatoes. While people usually eat just the tuber, you can also use its leaves almost the same as you would spinach.
Bread That Begins With U
You usually fill these adorable “little ears” dumplings (vushka) with foraged wild mushrooms and meat. They’re great with herbed butter, but toss them in some Polish borscht, and you’ll have a memorable dish that starts with U.
This dosa-style bread from South India has different spellings, depending on where you’re eating it (uttapam, uthapam, uttappa, oothappam, ootappa, and ootappo are a few variations). It’s thicker and chewier than the typical dosa, making it a great pizza crust substitute.
Now we’re talking about something I know well. This easy-to-make, soft, and delightfully filling side dish is so perfect for greens, stews, and proteins.
Cornmeal is a staple side dish you’ll find in most African homes – though under different aliases, Corn fufu, couscous de maize (French-speaking countries), Ugali in Kenya, Nshima in Zambia, Nsima in Malawi, and South Africa – Meilie pap.
Snacks That Start With U
Pickled ume plums make umeboshi which are common in Japan. Translated to English, it means salted Japanese or preserved plums, which makes sense. They also make great vinegar and are a thirst-quenching snack for those who love the intense flavor.
Hey, this cheese is your friend if you’re into special diets or raw food. Ubriaco is made from raw milk and aged for at least two months. It tends to be soft and supple, but the more it ages, the crumblier it gets, kinda like parmesan.
Desserts That Start With U
19. Upside-Down Cake
Deliciously upside-down cake, typically with pineapple, is baked in a single pan with its toppings at the bottom of the pan. Then, as soon as it cools enough, you flip it upside down, and all those gorgeous toppings end up on top.
This purple yam is so popular in the Philippines. The mellow sweetness and slightly nutty vanilla taste make it perfect for desserts boiled with condensed milk. It’s a true yam (not a sweet potato), and its color is quite attractive.
Talk about a super easy steamed cake for dessert. Uirō or uirō-mochi is a traditional Japanese cake with two simple ingredients, rice flour and sugar, but you can add other flavors if you want.
If you like donuts, you’ll love this sweet delicacy that starts with the letter U. These guys are famous in Southeastern Europe, and I know why. The soft, bread-like feel may not be as sweet as you’re used to in donuts, but that’s not a bad thing. And they also make a delicious breakfast with cheese. Yum!!!
Have you ever tried colostrum? It’s the first milk from a cow right after giving birth, and it’s what establishes the calf’s immune system. Of course, it’s good for us, too. And the Finnish take advantage of that by creating a dessert by adding a pinch of salt to the colostrum, baking it, then serving it with berries or jam.
24. Umbu Fruit
This tasty fruit from Brazil used to be considered poor people’s food. But that doesn’t make it any less scrumptious. It makes excellent juice and jam, great for a dessert that starts with U, wouldn’t you say?
Umbuzada is a delicious drink from the umbu fruit we just discussed because milk, sugar, and fruit usually always make a refreshing beverage on a hot tropical day. And, of course, it starts with U. 😉
Spices With the Letter U
26. Urfa Biber
Urfa biber (isot or Kurdish pepper) is a dried capsicum annuum cultivated in Turkey’s Urfa region. It’s not one of your hotter varieties, so it tends to be sweeter than most, perfect for those just wanting a little heat.
How many recipes on this list of foods that start with U did you recognize? Please let me know in the comments which one is your favorite because I just might create a recipe for it. Also, comment if you have some great ideas to add.❤️