17 Delicious Javanese Foods, Indonesia
This list of 17 delicious Javanese foods includes pictures, costs and other useful information.
On the night of day one I changed my mind. Turns out, although similar, every region in Indonesia has their little twist on foods. Actually, I should have known this since it is true almost everywhere in the world.
Some of these items on this list are not strictly Javanese foods, but they are all things I ate during my Central Java itinerary.
17 Delicious Javanese Foods
1. Nasi Goreng Jawa
Its not a spelling mistake. It’s meant to be Jawa.
This is not the first local fare I tried whilst in Central Java (I had eaten Soto Daging for lunch), but it was the first meal I took a picture of. Fried rice is all over Asia, and most of the world, but everywhere does it with their own little twist. I really liked this Javanese version. It had a nice variety of ingredients and was vegetarian.
I ate this at one of little stalls out the front of the Sonobudoyo Musesum whilst waiting for the puppet show to start. It cost 18,000INR including a 500ml bottle of water, which is actually a bit on the steep side since it was near a tourist attraction.
2. Tahu Campur
I nearly lost my sh*t when I first tasted this, in a good way. I stumbled across a small alleyway eatery on my way back to Villa Sambal from the Water Castle and nearly walked straight past it. I’m so glad I didn’t.
Tahu campur reminded me of gado-gado which I had tried in Bali (and is also in Java), but better. Tahu is tofu, and campur means mixed. Essentially it is a cold tofu dish with a sweet sauce and a bunch of other stuff. If you are not a fan of spice, be sure to ask the cook to go easy on the chili.
This one cost me 7,000IDR.
Throughout my stay I had other tahu dishes which where slight variations of this such as kotak tahu and lotak.
On the day I went to the Kalibiru National Park I kept seeing little food stalls advertising bakso and mie ayam. Well repeat advertising clearly has an effect on me, and it probably helps that I hadn’t tried either before, so I decided I’d have one of them for lunch. As soon as I had that deciding thought there was a sign with the words “Bakso Jumbo”.
Bakso is basically meatball soup. Bakso Jumbo is the same but with on huge meatball as opposed to several normal sized ones. At the place I got this one it cost 10,000IDR for the jumbo and 8,000IDR for the normal version.
4. Bakmi Goreng
This is basically fried noodles. I had a feeling it would be but wasn’t 100% sure. It was pretty good. I got if from a larger restaurant but it still only cost 13,000IDR including an iced lemon tea.
Later that evening the owner of Villa Sambal gave me some Bakmi also. What an awesome host!
5. Mie Ayam
Almost every-time I saw a sign for bakso it was accompanied with mie ayam. Mie is noodles, and ayam is chicken. The dish is a noodle soup with some chicken and vegetables. It’s pretty nice and only about 8,000IDR.
6. Nasi Jinggo
Rice, bits of meat, some vegetables, peanuts, and some chili sauce on the side. Just the perfect amount for me. Delicious and only 7,000IDR.
7. Gula Jawa
Javanese sugar is used in many things. I’m almost 100% sure that it is palm sugar and sometimes coconut sugar. Here is just one of the many things I tasted which featured Gula Jawa. It is sticky rice. I think it was actually kupat (a type of rice) with palm sugar.
The owner of Villa Sambal (Ibu Herni) gave it to me one afternoon. Actually, Ibu Herni seemed to give me afternoon tea almost every other day. And every time it some a different type of Javanese specialty. It was a really good place to stay.
8. Kuey Tiao Kuah
Kuey Tiao is flat rice noodles (known as He Fen in Chinese). Kuah means broth. It is pretty much noodle soup. It seems that there are many foods in Java (and most likely the rest of Indonesia) that you can have either fried (goreng) or in a broth (kuah).
This particular one cost under 18,000IDR (from an eatery with an English menu – so more expensive) and included a mixture of meats and prawns with some vegetables.
9. Chap Chai
Chap chai is mixed stir fried vegetables. It is actually one of my favorite dishes out of these delicious Javanese foods. This one cost me 8,000IDR.
10. Selat Daging
My first meal in Solo was recommended to me by “my guide” (a friend I met online before arriving). Selat daging is a Solo specialty and is a meatball, a boiled egg, and some vegetables in what tasted like a tomato based sauce. It was pretty delicious and cost 9500IDR.
11. Nasi Lewat
Another Solo dish which Ria (my friend) introduced to me was Nasi Lewat. It is rice, chicken, egg, some vegetable which I don’t know, in a coconut sauce. This one is the plain version (nasi lewat kosong) but there are many different types. The plain version is the cheapest at 9,000IDR, but the others were only a couple of thousand IDR more, if that.
12. Mie Rebus
After visiting Candi Cetho Ria took me to a tea house and I chose to eat Mie Rebus. It was kind of just like 2 minute noodles (ramen) but I was assured it wasn’t. It had an egg and some vegetables inside also.
Since is was from a “fancy” restaurant it cost 20,000IDR. You can get it on the street for under 10,000IDR.
I also had lychee tea which was pretty good. Ria had a kiwi fruit tea. It was also good.
13. Nasi Timlo
My last lunch meal with Ria and she took me back to where we had Selat, but this time we ate Nasi Timlo. It was like a noodle soup (with egg, vegetables, and a little bit of chicken) but also had some rice in it – more rice than noodles. Nasi means rice so this did not surprise me. I liked Selat Dagin better, but this was still pretty good. Cost only 7500IDR.
14. Es Dawet
After our Nasi Timlo we went to Pasar Gede and ate es dawet. Acoording to Ria it would usually come in a glass as a drink, but essentially it was the same thing. Coconut milk, and a bunch of stuff of which I have no idea. I think one was bean curd, another was mungbean. The whole thing was sweet. It was good.
This one cost 8,000IDR.
15. Nasi Penyet
I walked into some random restaurant and got one of their “paket” deals. Penyet + Tohu + Tempe + Es Tea (iced tea) all for only 15,000IDR.
I think Penyet is basically just a piece of fried chicken with rice and some different sauces. It was simple and delicious.
16. Tahu Gimbal
My first taste of local Semarang food. It was along the same lines of tahu campur (#2 on this list of deliscious Javanese foods). A little spicy but pretty good. 15,000IDR from a mall food-court.
17. Gado Gado
I had eaten Gado Gado once before in Bali and really liked it, so when I saw it again in Yogyakarta I was pretty happy. Similiar to Tahu Campur but includes an egg, some different vegetables and kind of sweet satay sauce.
I got this one from XT Square for 15,000IDR. It’s cheaper on the street, probably under 10,000IDR.
Well that’s it for this list of 17 delicious Javanese foods. There were a few other delicious Javanese foods that I wanted to try but I wasn’t feeling very well for my last week or so in Java so I decided to play it safe a bit.
Do you know of any other delicious Javanese foods that should be on this list? We’d love to hear about them or anything else you want to say in the comments 😀 .