Where To Find The Best Street Food In Dublin
The Republic of Ireland is famous for being one of the friendliest countries on the planet, and its capital city is no different. Dublin pubs, restaurants, cafes, and busy streets are packed with approachable and kind locals. The city is also teeming with rich history and eclectic architecture, which makes it a must-visit destination when exploring Europe.
Central Dublin is an extremely walkable area, with the famous Temple Bar neighborhood, and a variety of excellent sightseeing, shopping, and nightlife all within walking distance. These conditions are perfect for street food vendors setting up shop, firing up the grill or fryer, and serving some of the best budget-friendly bites in Dublin.
All around the city, there are vendors offering traditional Irish dishes like Irish stew, international favorites, and the dish that’s synonymous with Irish cuisine: fish and chips. Dublin also has a food-truck scene, which is a rarity in most European cities. Restaurant pop-ups and one-off collaborations are increasingly common as the Irish dining scene modernizes and becomes more nimble. While there are many outstanding street food options throughout the city, here are some of the best bets.
And before you hit the streets to sample some of the best of Dublin's food scene, don't forget to drop off your bags at a Bounce luggage storage. With locations around the world, including in Dublin, Bounce is here to help you travel light.
The Best Street Food Vendors in Dublin
This Dublin “chipper” has been serving fish and chips for over a century, and it remains a favorite for both locals and tourists. While there are locations throughout Dublin, the Christchurch location is the original, and it's only a short walk from Temple Bar and other must-see destinations. There is almost always a line (a good sign for any food counter) of excited customers outside its doors, but luckily it moves swiftly.
Expect freshly battered fish and perfectly crispy golden fries. Don’t forget to ask for “crispy bits” sprinkled across your fries. These golden-fried nuggets of potatoes from the fryer are a famous addition that adds a new layer of flavor and texture. They will explain why everyone from Bruce Springsteen to U2 have sung this spot’s praises over the years. This is the quintessential fish and chips experience in Dublin, and it’s more than worth the short walk from the beating heart of Dublin.
Inspired by traditional Indian “wallas” (street vendors) this restaurant has its roots in serving its Indian cuisine at food festivals and outdoor markets around Dublin. Their stall displays a can’t miss pink elephant and is an unmistakable fixture at outdoor pop-up events and markets across the city. Their menu mixes authentic spices and great flavours with local ingredients, and it’s some of the best Indian food in Dublin.
While this is a classic Dublin chipper, you might be surprised to hear that fish and chips are not the menu item to get excited about. The proprietor is Irish-Italian, so Presto Chipper serves up some of the best pizza in Dublin. This is a homemade, hand-tossed Neapolitan-style pizza that is perfect for carrying out and sharing. If “you can get pizza at home any time” is a reasonable argument, try the lightly-battered fish and crispy chips. Or order both, everything on the menu is generously-priced and delicious.
Orale Street Food
Most international travelers will be shocked and delighted to find a street-friendly Mexican restaurant in Dublin. Traditional handheld favorites like tacos, quesadilla, and burritos use a variety of ingredients like pork belly and chiles to recreate Mexico’s rich street food tradition. Find their restaurant on the Un Laoghaire Pavillion or the Eatyard food court in the Drumcondra neighborhood.
Shays Burger Van
Follow Shays Burger Van on social media to track down some of Ireland’s best American-style casual bites. Juicy burgers and french fries (sorry, chips) recreate the perfect lunch for hungry customers. Want some chips loaded with melty cheese sauce, garlic aioli, and bacon? It’s on the menu, and you won’t need to travel far to the curbside after they hand you this quick bite.
The Salty Buoy
This unmistakable vintage Citroën H van serves up some of the best seafood in Dublin (let alone the best from a food truck). The fish and chips on offer are some of the best you’ll find, but you’ll want to try their specials. The lobster roll, chargrilled prawns, and creamy chowder are two favorites. They even have spicy and fresh pokē bowls. The Salty Buoy truck is a common feature at food markets and events, but it’s advisable to track them on social media if you’re craving fresh seafood at great prices, and service with a smirk from one of Dublin’s quirkiest vendors.
This is Dublin’s first poutinerie, and (most likely) its only mobile poutine truck. The amazing Canadian invention of dousing french fries in gravy, cheese curds, and smoked meat (pulled pork is the favorite) has made its way to Dublin, and locals and tourists are obsessed! This might seem like a handful, but poutine is a classic casual meal, and easy to grab a bowl and eat while you’re on the go. This nourishing dish is also perfect if the weather isn’t ideal.
Inspired by the classic French food trucks of yesteryear, Classic Crepes have been serving delicious crepes and galettes out of their charming and twee Citroen HY Van from the 1970s. Crepes might be familiar to most, but their gluten-free cousin the galette is an equally delicious savory pancake that can really capture the imagination with interesting flavor combinations. Find them at the monthly Dublin Flea Market at Newmarket Square, The Green Door Market, and follow their social media to track down your new favorite crepe!
Where to Find the Best Dublin Street Food
Temple Bar Food Market
This neighborhood is the first thing that comes to mind when most folks think about Dublin. It’s the bustling, beating heart of the city, and its pubs and restaurants are legendary. On Saturdays, Meeting House Square becomes an outdoor food market where Dublin-area producers set up stalls to sell produce, fish, baked goods, dairy, and just about any other local Irish delicacy. Traditional favorite Irish soda bread is the headliner here for both locals and tourists.
Don’t sleep on the food carts and street vendors that set up shop at the Market. The vendors vary every weekend, but the who’s who of Temple Bar street food tends to show up. Don’t forget about the many vendors that also sell food around the Grafton Street shopping district.
Howth is a fishing village located on a craggy peninsula just outside of Dublin. It’s a quick trip, and there are enough fun activities for it to be well worth the short trek, including some of Dublin’s best hikes, and the Howth Market. This charming outdoor market is immensely popular, as the roster of local producers and vendors always delivers some of the best bites and fresh produce in Dublin.
Local producers of artisanal jams, honey, cheese, and other fine products sell their wares in these stalls, and these are all of the highest quality. There are also crafts, jewelry, small-batch lotions, candles, and everything else mom and grandma will want to take home! If it's a sunny day, be prepared for a friendly but substantial crowd. If it feels too busy, take a refreshing walk along the coast and reward yourself with a tasty fish and chip, or some delicious baked goods.
Coppinger Row Outdoor Food Market
Next to the elegant Powerscourt Townhouse centre, Coppinger Row turns into an outdoor food market every Thursday. It’s one of the best food markets in the Dublin city centre, and there is an eclectic and refreshing array of vendors. The Mediterranean, Palestinian, and other international vendors are the most popular. You can also buy luxury produce and ingredients if you’re looking to prepare an upscale meal at home.
Smithfield Outdoor Food Market
This cobblestone plaza hosts a food market every Friday to help workers and commuters celebrate the weekend’s arrival with a variety of local fruits and vegetables, baked goods, and some of the best vendors in the city. The roster rotates, so you might not know what to expect every time, but their track record of must-try vendors speaks for itself.
The Station Building Food Market
Just outside of Dublin’s gorgeous Iveagh Gardens, The Station Building hosts a lunchtime food market on Tuesdays and Thursdays for hungry workers and tourists alike. The stalls have everything from local produce to international dishes. You’ll find a hearty Steak and Guinness Pie (one of Ireland’s classic dishes), as well as freshly-made falafel pitas.
Spencer Dock Food Market
Further east on the docks near the ocean is the Food Market hosted every Wednesday on Spencer Dock. If you’re strolling along the water around lunchtime, you can find a wide selection of favorites by Yalla Shawarma, Burger Cartel, The Paella Guys, Mr. Noodle, and Say Fish. It’s a great setting for a quick pita or fish and chips!
Street Food Festivals in Dublin
The Big Grill Festival
Every American ex-pat in Europe claims to miss two things the most when living abroad: Mexican food, and barbecue food. Which makes The Big Grill Festival, held every August in Herbert Park, a welcome addition to any American’s summer calendar. This festival focuses on showcasing the best barbecue from Ireland, the UK, and continental Europe. For many Dubliners, this might be their first introduction to American-style barbecued meats and dishes.
Brisket, ribs, and hot links are an uncommon sight in Ireland, let alone sweet, tangy, and molasses-based BBQ sauce, so this event represents a real treat for local foodies who want to taste and learn about this vibrant culinary tradition. There is also a focus on American-style craft beer at this festival. So you’ll be trading Guinness for an IPA for refreshment as you walk from stand to stand.
Eat The Streets Festival
Eat The Streets! Is a collective focusing on bringing schools, farmers, urban growers, and local communities together to celebrate the Dublin scene in a festive and educational setting.
The organization holds a festival every year in the spring that showcases the foods that are grown locally today, as well as the long history of community-based agriculture in Dublin and Ireland. This is an interactive event, where the community is encouraged to bring recipes from their families that can be cooked by expert Dublin-based chefs.
When the festival is not happening, there are online educational tools like forums, webcasts, and other media that keep the spirit of Eat The Streets alive. This represents a rich cultural institution that has been educating people of all ages on how to participate in your community and contribute to Dublin’s rich culinary heritage.
Taste of Dublin
The Taste of Dublin festival is four days of food-fueled glory. The city’s top restaurants, specialty growers, and artisanal products are showcased in an open-air setting in Dublin’s Iveagh Gardens. The festival’s mission statement is to eviscerate the common misconception that Irish food is bland and unworthy. There are chef demonstrations and other educational programs at the festival (because you’ll need a break between generous tasting portions). There is also a multi-cultural focus of the programming that reflects Ireland’s ever-changing culinary tradition. The Taste of Dublin intends to tell the story of Dublin’s food scene and looks to the future to where the next generation of restaurants will make their name.
The setting itself is absolutely gorgeous, the Iveagh Gardens are a lush urban oasis that is the perfect setting for an elegant and festive event like the Taste. The scenic beauty, specialty gardens, maze, and cascading waterfall are a far cry from the rest of Dublin’s bustling energy, and it’s the perfect destination for a quiet stroll amidst natural beauty. Just hope the weather holds up!
Dublin certainly punches above its weight class in regards to culture, shopping, food, and more. But the atmosphere and energy in the city streets are perhaps its most valuable asset. There are markets popping up everywhere, the compact and bustling Dublin city centre is one of the most delightful neighborhoods in the world to stay in and explore. Dublin’s street food vendors are a key ingredient to making this city a can’t miss-destination full of unforgettable adventures. LetBouncehold your bags while you discover Ireland’s capital city and cultural heart.