Exploring Montenegrin Cuisine: Local Dishes, Restaurants & Traditional Recipes

Exploring Montenegrin Cuisine: Local Dishes, Restaurants & Traditional Recipes

Exploring Montenegrin Cuisine: Local Dishes, Restaurants & Traditional Recipes

Montenegrin cuisine is a delightful blend of flavors influenced by its Mediterranean climate and historical ties to neighboring countries. From hearty meat dishes to fresh seafood and delicate pastries, Montenegro offers a wide range of culinary experiences. If you are a food enthusiast, here is a guide to help you explore the delicious world of Montenegrin cuisine.

Traditional Dishes

  1. Kacamak: This creamy and savory dish consists of cornmeal cooked with cheese and served with butter. It is a comfort food staple in Montenegro.
  2. Cevapi: These small, grilled sausages made from a mixture of beef and lamb are a popular street food in Montenegro. Served with traditional accompaniments such as kaymak (clotted cream), onions, and ajvar (red pepper relish), cevapi is a must-try.
  3. Njeguški Pršut: Montenegro is famous for its cured meats, and Njeguški Pršut is a prime example. This dry-cured ham is aged in the mountainous region of Njeguši and has a rich and smoky flavor.
  4. Pastrmajlija: This traditional meat pie is made with a flaky pastry crust filled with juicy pieces of marinated lamb or beef, onions, and herbs. It is a hearty and satisfying dish.
  5. Pljeskavica: Similar to a hamburger, pljeskavica is a grilled meat patty made from a mixture of ground beef, lamb, and pork. It is usually served in a bun and topped with cheese, onions, and ajvar.

Seafood Delights

With its breathtaking coastline along the Adriatic Sea, Montenegro offers a bounty of fresh seafood. From grilled fish to seafood risotto, here are a few dishes you shouldn't miss:

  • Grilled Fish: Montenegro is known for its delicious grilled fish, which is usually seasoned with local herbs and olive oil. Some popular fish varieties include sea bass, sea bream, and mackerel.
  • Buzara: This flavorful seafood stew is made with mussels, clams, shrimp, and other shellfish cooked in a rich broth of white wine, garlic, and parsley. It is usually served with crusty bread.
  • Risotto with Seafood: Montenegrin seafood risotto is a delightful combination of creamy rice and tender morsels of shrimp, calamari, and mussels. It is often flavored with aromatic saffron.
  • Black Risotto: This unique dish gets its dark color from squid ink. Made with rice, squid, garlic, and onion, black risotto is a true seafood delicacy in Montenegro.

Local Restaurants

Here are a few recommended restaurants in Montenegro where you can savor authentic local cuisine:

  1. Konoba Stari Mlin - Located in Kotor, this charming restaurant offers a cozy atmosphere and a menu that showcases Montenegrin specialties like grilled meats and seafood.
  2. Restoran Galion - Situated in Budva, this waterfront restaurant offers panoramic views of the Adriatic Sea. Indulge in fresh seafood dishes, including grilled fish and seafood pastas.
  3. Restaurant Drago - Nestled in the village of Kolasin, this rustic restaurant is known for its hearty mountain cuisine. Try traditional dishes like kacamak and lamb cooked under the iron bell.

These are just a few examples of the many restaurants in Montenegro where you can discover the flavors of the country. Whether you are by the coast or in the mountains, there is always a delightful culinary experience awaiting you.

Traditional Recipes

If you want to recreate Montenegrin flavors at home, here are a couple of traditional recipes to try:

Recipe: Kacamak


  • 500g cornmeal
  • 200g cheese (preferably kajmak or feta)
  • 100g butter
  • Salt to taste


  1. Bring water to a boil in a large pot.
  2. Add cornmeal slowly while stirring continuously to avoid lumps.
  3. Cook the mixture on low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 20-30 minutes until thickened.
  4. Add cheese and salt, and stir until the cheese melts and incorporates into the cornmeal.
  5. Remove from heat and serve hot with a generous amount of butter.

Recipe: Cevapi


  • 500g ground beef
  • 500g ground lamb
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper


  1. In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, ground lamb, onion, garlic, paprika, salt, and black pepper. Mix well until all the ingredients are evenly incorporated.
  2. Shape the mixture into small, sausage-shaped patties (cevapi).
  3. Preheat a grill or skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the cevapi for about 5-7 minutes per side until nicely browned and cooked through.
  4. Serve the cevapi hot with pita bread, kaymak, onions, and ajvar.

Enjoy the authentic flavors of Montenegro with these traditional recipes.