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Facts About Italian Food

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Italian food is popular way beyond the limits of the Italian border. Italian food is enjoyed, cooked, copied, and sold in countries all over the world. It is hard to pinpoint the reasons why Italian food is so popular, but Italian dishes such as spaghetti, lasagna, and pizza have been staples of food cultures in regions far from Italy. You will find, below, some interesting facts about Italian food that you may not be familiar with.

Neapolitan pizzaA traditional Neapolitan pizza. Photo by Valerio Capello.

History of Italian Food

Italian food history is diverse because of all of the different regions of Italy, but they all have come together to form what we know of as Italian food. To trace the history of popular Italian dishes, one would have to learn about many different Italian regions. Italy’s diverse history brought together many different elements and influences from other neighboring, and sometimes occupying countries. French, Middle-Eastern, and Greek influences all can be found in Italian history, and consequently, in Italian food history.

Northern Italy

Northern Italy is responsible for products rich in dairy because of its location near northern European countries that are known for dairy products. Creamy sauces, such as Alfredo, can be credited to the northern regions of Italy and the abundance of milk, eggs, and other fairy products that are found there.

TiramisuTiramisu. Picture by Paul Stein.

Southern Italy

Southern Italy is responsible for the hearty tomato sauces that many people throughout the world enjoy. The climate is perfect, there, for growing tomatoes that are the fresh base for sauces. Because of the rich tomato sauces, southern Italy is the place where the history of pizza and the traditional spaghetti dinner can be traced.


It is important to note that dessert is just as famous as the food that comes from Italy. Italian’s are famous for combining unique ingredients to create delicious desserts. Tiramisu and cannolis are just some of the many rich desserts that come from Italy. The world owes a great debt to Italy for the delicious food that comes from Italy!