104 Best Foods Starting with B
Is it just a coincidence that many of the best foods in the world start with the letter B? No, really. It sounds impossible, and yet here they are, one tastier than the other. See for yourself.
The quintessential fast food item. A juicy patty topped with melted cheese, crunchy lettuce, sweet tomatoes, aromatic onions, tangy pickles, smoky bacon, and dressed with ketchup, mustard or mayonnaise. Two soft buns hold everything together for an amazing experience.
2. Blue cheese
Speaking of unforgettable burgers, blue cheese is an awesome substitute for the more classic cheddar or American options. It brings a strong, almost pungent flavor that works incredibly well with savory patties and most toppings. Umami!
3. Banana split
A timeless American treat, fun, refreshing and visually inviting. It has vibrant colors and layers of goodness: banana halves cradling 3 scoops of ice cream, drizzled with syrups covered with generous dollops of whipped cream and maraschino cherries.
Cooking foods over an open flame or a grill is something closely associated with humans since prehistoric times. Nowadays, sauces, rubs and marinades are used to improve the meat. Also, let’s not forget the social aspect of sharing a meal.
In American barbecue culture, brisket is a star attraction. Seasoned with a dry rub or marinade, then smoked low and slow over wood or charcoal, it becomes tender and infused with smoky flavors.
6. Balsamic vinegar
If you’re not using this amazing dark-colored, syrupy liquid in your cooking, you’re missing out. Originating from Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy, this unique vinegar tastes slightly sweet and tangy with complex underlying notes. For more information, check out our story on the most expensive balsamic vinegars in the world.
7. Baked Alaska
Any dessert that combines ice cream, cake, and meringue has to taste amazing. But the Baked Alaska is also largely fashionable because of its presentation. When served, the meringue on top is often browned or torched, resembling a snowy mountain peak.
Also known as hunter’s stew, this is a traditional Polish dish with a long culinary history. Made with a combination of sauerkraut (for sourness), fresh cabbage, various meats, and aromatic spices, it becomes a hearty and flavorful stew. It’s eaten year-round, but especially during the Easter holidays.
9. Bay Leaf
A bay leaf is the cornerstone of any decent savory dish, particularly stews, sauces, braised meats and soups. Humble in appearance, this aromatic leaf adds an herbal, slightly floral aroma, reminiscent of balsamic.
This flatbread made with basic and often interchangeable ingredients is a common food in Scotland but also for Native American and Canadian communities. It is a fundamental food source and a symbol of survival and resilience.
This colorful Korean dish starts with a bed of rice, a layer of assorted vegetables, and is then garnished with thinly sliced beef (bulgogi), chicken, pork, or tofu. In true Asian style, a sunny-side-up egg is placed on top with Gochujang.
You either love it…or you really love it. Crispy, salty, smoky yummy bacon. It goes with everything. Ice cream with bacon bits, delicious. In a sandwich or a salad, instantly better. Is there anything more comforting than mac and cheese with bacon? No way!
But if you happen to run out of bacon, check out these great bacon substitutes.
One of the most iconic dishes in the Indian subcontinent and beyond, this is a simple recipe of rice with meats or vegetables. Due to its adaptability and generational connection, it has become extremely popular. If you want to cook some delicious biryani at home, check out our Hyderabadi chicken biryani recipe.
14. Basmati rice
Basmati rice is a star ingredient, particularly for biryani. This long-grain aromatic rice variety has a particular ability of remaining separate and still having a fluffy texture. The word basmati means fragrant in Hindi.
This rich and dense chocolate cake comes from the U.S. It is a mix between a cake and a cookie and is known for having a fudgy texture and satisfying taste. By the way, National Brownie Day is December 8th. Check out our mascarpone and orange brownie recipe or our delicious raspberry brownie recipe.
16. Bloody Mary
Legends associate this drink with Queen Mary I of England, who was nicknamed Bloody Mary. Several variations exist, though core ingredients remain vodka, tomato juice (for its distinctive red color and tomato-forward flavor), salt and celery as garnish.
On the topic of Bloody Marys, the Bullshot is a modified version of the classic cocktail…though it is not for every palate. It’s a savory drink made with beef bouillon or consommé in place of tomato juice.
Considered a national delicacy, and known as Brazil’s national sweet, brigadeiros are bite-sized chocolate fudge balls made from condensed milk, cocoa powder, butter, and topped with chocolate sprinkles. They are often associated with joyous celebrations.
Both fishing and seafood enthusiasts are fond of this fish. Because the meat is oil-rich, it lends itself well to a variety of culinary preparations. Bluefish pâté is a particularly interesting recipe to try.
Distinct in appearance and texture, this type of pear came into the spotlight at the beginning of the 19th century. Bosc pears are often selected for cooking and baking due to their firm flesh and sweet-spicy flavor
Regarding pears, we should also mention the Bartlett (or Williams) variety. Sweet with hints of citrus-like flavor and particularly juicy when ripe, this fruit lends itself very well to cooking, for salads, or used in various desserts.
From the same family as cabbage, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, and kale, broccoli has a similar earthy, slightly bitter, and subtly sweet taste. Highly nutritious, it’s considered by some a superfood, due to its rich array of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Korean cuisine is appreciated all over the world, and this simple dish is a good example why. Somyeon (thin wheat noodles) are boiled until tender then gochujang and vegetables are added. Toasted sesame seeds and crushed seaweed (gim) are commonly sprinkled on top.
One of the oldest cultivated crops with a crucial role in human history as a vital food source. It can be used as a whole grain, pearled grain, flour, or for brewing beer and even barley water. Sometimes used for bannock.
This delicious Mexican dish has been adopted worldwide. It ticks all the right boxes – flavorful, portable, customizable, choose any combination of meat to go along with beans, rice, cheese, guacamole, salsa, sour cream. The burrito has it all.
26. Bok choy
This naturally green Chinese cabbage is widely used in Asian cuisine, stir-fried, sautéed, steamed, boiled, or added to soups and stews. In terms of taste, it’s delicate and refreshing with subtle hints of sweetness.
This classic Italian meat-based pasta sauce is synonymous with hearty and tasty pasta. Traditionally served with tagliatelle, bolognese goes well with most versions of pasta, from spaghetti to rigatoni and anything in between. It can be used as filling for lasagna.
Many Middle Eastern or Mediterranean shops have bulgur, a type of whole grain. It looks like small, light-colored granules, yellow to light brown, and is easily cooked into a simple dish.
If you enjoy exquisite drinks, try the original Cognac from France, Armagnac from Gascony, Calvados, Poire Williams, or any of the other varieties. Brandy has a rich, smooth, and complex flavor profile with notes of fruit, vanilla, caramel, and spices.
If you’re into desserts or baking, then you’re familiar with this delectable berry. Commonly featured in pies, tarts, crumbles, cobblers, and fruit compotes, it has a sweet-tart and slightly tangy profile. Drizzle some blackcurrant syrup over pancakes, waffles, ice cream.
Along with Espagnole, Tomato, Velouté and Hollandaise, this is one of the “mother sauces”. Béchamel provides a base for wonderful dishes like cannelloni, Vol-au-Vent, white pizza (where it replaces tomato sauce) and even crêpes.
32. Baba ganoush
If you think eggplants are boring, you haven’t tried this exciting Middle Eastern dip. Eggplants are roasted or grilled until the flesh becomes soft and charred, which also gives a smoky flavor to the spread. Here’s the recipe.
Throughout Eastern Europe, there are many versions of borscht, but the traditional deep red Ukrainian origin is the most famous. Served hot or cold, most commonly with a dollop of sour cream on top, it’s just a bowl of goodness.
Beside borscht, beetroots are used in a wide range of delicious recipes; from salads, to pastas, risottos, carpaccio, hummus to burgers, and so much more. Pickled, made into chips and even juice, there’s nothing beetroots cannot do. Have a beetroot brownie, they’re pretty good!
Flaky pastry, crunchy nuts, sweet syrup – that’s baklava. Some differences depending on region, Greece uses extra honey, Turkish baklava is renowned for its use of pistachios, while Iranian and Azerbaijani are infused in rose water.
36. Bordelaise sauce
This classic French sauce regularly incorporates Bordeaux wine, hence the name. It combines shallots, garlic, butter, along with reduced stock, to make a rich and aromatic liquid. Steak Bordelaise is a great dish that uses this luscious sauce.
This strong, flavorful German lager beer is characterized by robust maltiness, smoothness, and a relatively high alcohol content compared to other lagers. Varieties include: Doppelbock (“double” strength), Eisbock (concentrated flavor from freezing then removing the ice), Weizenbock (fruity and spicy).
Long, thin, and cylindrical in shape, this French bread is just as iconic as the Eiffel Tower. A crispy crust and soft, airy interior makes it ideal for mopping up sauces and gravies, and for sandwiches, like the famous jambon-beurre (ham and butter).
These come in different sizes, shapes, and colors. They are nutritious, versatile and incredibly healthy, offering a plant-based solution to meat protein sources. Chilies, burritos, soups, salads, spreads (like hummus), stews, all make use of this wonderful legume.
Sausages are such an amazing creations. A myriad of aromas and textures are captured inside a thin casing. And the bratwurst is king of the sausages. In the U.S., it’s often associated with sporting events.
While the Germans pride themselves with the bratwurst, South Africa and Namibia boasts their own iconic and mouth-watering boerewors. In 2009, a Guinness World Record was set for the longest boerewors measuring 1,557.15 m (5,108 ft 9 in).
Was there ever a better pairing than bratwursts and beer? Burgers? Barbecue? And so many options to choose from, lagers, ales, stouts, porters, IPAs, wheat beers, and pilsners. Better yet, make your own artisanal brew.
You can’t have pesto without basil. Or pizza Margherita. Or pad krapow gai. Or panzanella salad. Or gỏi cuốn. Or many other delightful sauces, desserts, and beverages. This small fragrant leaf adds a burst of flavor and freshness.
Butter just makes everything taste better. It’s an essential ingredient in various culinary applications – sautéing, frying, and baking, where it adds flavor, richness, and moisture. You can also enjoy it on its own spread on toast, especially if it’s a premium, expensive butter.
45. Butter cake
Two foods that are already amazing on their own come together to create something irresistible. This cake is often tender, crumbly, and slightly dense, with a moist and buttery taste that is both comforting and delicious.
A version of the Hollandaise “mother sauce”, the Béarnaise is renowned for its rich and creamy texture, tangy flavor, and aromatic herbs. It combines clarified butter, egg yolks, white wine vinegar, shallots, tarragon, and a dash of black pepper.
47. Beach plum
This small fruit-bearing shrub is native to the eastern coast of North America, particularly along the Atlantic coastline from Maine to Maryland. More commonly, it’s used to make jams, jellies, sauces, syrups, and even beach plum wine.
French pastry has crossed to ocean to become a beloved local specialty in New Orleans, Louisiana. Associated with the famous Café du Monde, beignets are often enjoyed with a cup of café au lait, creating a popular breakfast or snack combination.
Wherever incredible fresh ingredients are available, a heavenly recipe is bound appear. Such is the case with Marseille and bouillabaisse, a traditional fish soup which uses fish and shellfish, combined with tomatoes, onions, leeks, garlic, and olive oil.
Concentrated spread made from beef extract, yeast extract, and a blend of savory spices, designed to add flavor to soups, stews, and gravies. It might sound unusual, but Bovril is often enjoyed as a hot beverage.
By simmering meat, bones, and/or vegetables in water, you will end up with a stock that concentrates all the flavor. It serves as a foundation for creating delicious and savory recipes, especially soups, stews and sauces.
52. Burgundy wine
It’s only Burgundy if it comes from that particular region of France. The two main grape varieties, Pinot Noir for red wines and Chardonnay for white wines, are highly esteemed for their quality.
53. Boeuf Bourguignon
The Burgundy Pino Noir is an exquisite drink, but also a primary ingredient in cooking. It takes tougher cuts like chuck roast or brisket, along with some basic vegetables, and transforms them into a glorious stew. You can also find a pork bourguignon variant of this classic French dish.
Bold, rich, smooth. American whiskey, slightly sweeter, from the high percentage of corn used in the mash, with notes of caramel and vanilla from aging in oak barrels. A lengthy finish allows the flavors to linger and evolve.
This is a sweet that mixes butter and caramelized sugar. Butterscotch is widely used in baking and candy-making. It can be incorporated into cakes, cookies, brownies, puddings, ice creams, and various desserts.
56. Bún chả
This simple Vietnamese dish was created by Hanoi chefs. They are pork patties grilled over an open flame and delicate rice vermicelli noodles accompanied by a dipping sauce called nuoc cham (fish sauce, sugar, lime juice, water, garlic, chili).
When fully ripe, the inner flesh becomes soft and creamy, somewhat resembling the texture of bread or a baked potato. Thus, the name breadfruit. It has a rough and bumpy green skin and tastes like baked bread or custard.
This is a popular fish that has several species, including striped, largemouth, and smallmouth. Bass is highly valued for its delicate flavor, firm texture, and versatility in cooking. A favored choice for both professional chefs and home cooks alike.
These make a tasty and convenient snack that is high in potassium, essential for maintaining proper heart and muscle function. Varieties include plantains, starchy and often used for cooking, and red bananas, with a subtle raspberry undertone.
60. Banana Bread
If your bananas look a bit overripe, don’t throw them away, just make banana bread. Actually, the riper the bananas, the sweeter and more flavorful the bread will be. Add flour, sugar, eggs, butter or oil. It’s really easy!
In the past, this Irish bread could predict your future. Hidden charms, such as a ring (for marriage or romance), a coin (wealth or good fortune), or a stick (disagreements) could be found inside. Even without predictions, it’s still great as a tea cake.
62. Bavarian cream/Cake
In spite of the name, this is not a German dish. It’s a smooth and creamy dessert, similar to pastry cream or crème Anglaise, topped with fruit purees, chocolate, coffee, liqueurs, or nuts.
This is a famous wine-producing region in France, located in the southern part of the Burgundy wine region. It is known for producing light, fruity, and vibrant red wines primarily made from the Gamay grape variety.
Brie and Beaujolais go together like a harmonious duet. This famous French cheese with a creamy and buttery notes pairs wonderfully well with the lively and fruity character of the Beaujolais wine. An awesome addition for a French themed party.
65. Black Pepper
Where would we be without spices? Or without salt and its eternal partner, black pepper? Just to put it into perspective, during ancient times, pepper was so highly valued that it became a form of currency for trading and bartering.
66. Bell Peppers
While chili peppers and bell peppers are from the same family, they are on opposite sides. In fact, bell peppers are neither peppery, nor are they a vegetable (technically a fruit).
The secret to an amazing bagel is boiling the dough before baking. The original Polish ones were showered with sesame of poppy seeds. Nowadays you can have cinnamon raisin, blueberry, onion and even jalapeño bagels.
When the bagel is not enough, in comes the lovely brioche. This soft, light, and airy crumb turned from bread to pastry. Plain, it’s nice on itself, even better for French toast and absolutely delicious in bread pudding.
Refreshing and elegant Italian cocktail made with just two main ingredients: Prosecco, a sparkling Italian white wine, and peach puree or nectar. Served in a flute or a wine glass, Bellini is an effervescent drink perfect for brunches.
An antipasto is meant to stimulate the appetite and offer a small taste of flavorful and enticing dishes that are to come. Bruschetta is grilled bread scrapped with garlic and topped with garnishes (vegetables, meats or cheeses).
Specialty of the Lombardy region in Northern Italy, Bresaola is a type of cured meat made from beef. Often served thinly sliced, either on its own as an antipasto (appetizer) or as an ingredient in salads, carpaccio, or sandwiches.
Sometimes called Hootenanny, Hooligan or Dutch baby, Bismark is a type of pancake or American popover. It’s large, puffy, with a soft and custard-like interior and a crispy, golden-brown exterior. Toppings range from sweet to savory.
73. Beef Stroganoff
Named after the notorious Stroganov family, this classic and hearty Russian dish brings together tender strips of beef, mushrooms, onions, and a rich and creamy sauce. Sour cream and sometimes a touch of Dijon mustard are added.
You’d be pretty reluctant if someone offered you a Bee Sting, unless they mentioned it’s actually a cake. Supposedly, the cake was created by bakers in Linz to celebrate a victorious defense against invaders by throwing beehives at them.
In the United States, biscuits usually refer to a type of quick bread that is similar to scones but with a flakier texture. They are a staple in Southern cuisine, often served as a side for breakfast or dinner.
A form of jerky but with distinct flavor and preparation methods, this popular South African snack is generally made with beef, but can also be produced from game meats like ostrich, venison, or even fish.
These small, round berries are dark blue to purple in color, sweet-tart in flavor with a hint of bitterness. While they are customarily used to make pies, tarts, jams, and preserves, they can also be made into liqueurs, most notably Romanian Afinată.
Brazilians have always been a joyful people, smiling when playing football, dancing salsa, or cooking. They are more than happy to give you Beijinhos, or “small kisses”, sweets similar to the Brigadeiro, but with grated coconut and a single clove atop.
Don’t be fooled by their appearance, these Moroccan pancakes are incredibly delicious. “Thousand holes” pancakes are traditionally drizzled with honey or date syrup and served with butter, soft cheese, or amlou (paste from almonds, honey, and argan oil).
Luxembourg is a small European country known for its stunning medieval castles and deep multilingual culture. They also have a beautiful green bean soup with smoked bacon bits or ham to charm tourists.
81. Bánh Canh
Soups are light and aromatic dishes that concentrate flavor. In Vietnam, bánh canh is a popular soup made with thick, chewy rice or tapioca noodles (wider and chewier), typically served in a rich and savory broth.
82. Bacalhau à Brás
Since the 18th century, bacalhau à brás has been an iconic part of Portuguese cuisine. Bacalhau (salted cod) is boiled then placed over a bed of golden and crispy potato strips, with eggs sautéed in onions and garlic.
Along the coastal regions of Croatia, most restaurants and eateries will have brudet on their menu. It’s a traditional fish stew made with a rich and aromatic stock. From Latin brodum meaning broth or soup, in Italy, it’s brodetto.
84. Bolinho de Bacalhau
These salted codfish fritters are a common street food in Portugal and Brazil. Bolinho de bacalhau (codfish cakes) are made with mashed potatoes, chopped onions, garlic, parsley and nutmeg.
Served in cones made from recycled newspaper or in bowls made from banana leaves, bhelpuri is a tasty Indian street food featuring puffed rice (murmura), sev (crunchy chickpea flour noodles), chopped vegetables, and a spicy-tangy tamarind-based chutney.
In terms of seafood fine dining, there’s nothing better than a creamy lobster bisque. This rich, creamy, and flavorful classic French soup is made with lobster, crab, shrimp, or crayfish. The key is to sauté shellfish shells with aromatics, thus infusing the base with even more flavor.
Legend says French Benedictine monk Alexandre Le Grand found an ancient manuscript containing a recipe for an herbal elixir. It was a blend of 27 different herbs that eventually became an aperitif with hints of honey, citrus, and warm spices.
Grilled, smoked, used in sashimi and sushi, or ceviche, the bonito fish will always be delectable. It’s firm and meaty in texture, like tuna, though mild in taste. In Japan, you can savor bonito tataki, made with sake marinade.
This is a group of freshwater and saltwater fish that can be found in most regions around the world. A prominent ingredient in Mediterranean cuisines, bream is often prepared with olive oil, garlic, and fresh herbs, emphasizing the simplicity and natural flavors of the fish.
Known as European sprat, is a small fish, around 10-15 centimeters (4-6 inches) in length that belongs to the herring family. Slender, with a silvery coloration on its sides and a greenish-blue back, they are pretty tasty, especially pickled.
During festive seasons, a chunk of brittle can make your day. This hard and crunchy confection is made with caramelized sugar and a variety of nuts. You could generally get peanut brittle or almond brittle, but today other nuts like cashews, pecans, and hazelnuts can be used.
An awesome dessert similar to panna cotta. If back in medieval Europe only noblemen could enjoy it, nowadays it’s very common. You only need milk or cream, sugar, and a thickening agent like gelatin or cornstarch to make it.
These are thin pancakes, like crepes, rolled and filled with a variety of delicious ingredients. A sweet blintz can have fruit preserves (like raspberry or blueberry) or sweeter cheeses (farmer’s cheese, cottage cheese). Savory ones are drizzled in sauces or gravy.
This Mediterranean plant has a surprisingly large number of culinary uses. In green salads, young leaves and flowers can be used alongside lettuce, spinach, or arugula. Since it has a cucumber-like taste, it makes for delightful stuffing or wrapping.
These bite-sized sweet confections are beloved worldwide. Almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts are nice for a bit of crunch, while caramel or creams are preferred for soft bonbon. Some even contain a liquid center, infused with alcohol or liqueurs.
No list of the best foods starting with B can be complete without the baozi. These Chinese buns are soft, fluffy, and filled with various savory or sweet fillings. Steamed or finished in a pot, they will always be bursting with flavor.
A dish representative of Korean cuisine, bulgogi is thin slices of beef marinated in soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil and seeds, garlic, ginger and sometimes grated pear or kiwi, then grilled or stir-fried. Some trivia: bulgogi translates as “fire meat”.
This spiced minced casserole comes from South Africa. Beef or lamb meat is cooked with a blend of spices like turmeric, curry powder, ground coriander, ground cumin. Chopped dried fruits like apricots, raisins or sultanas add a touch of sweetness.
Remember the slogan: “Nobody better lay a finger on my Butterfinger”. This American candy bar has a crunchy peanut butter-flavored center and a coating of milk chocolate that you can never forget.
100. Bundt Cake
The bundt pan made this cake skyrocket in popularity. It has a central hole in the middle and beautifully scalloped edges that can be decorated with glazes, powdered sugar, frosting, or fresh fruit.
Thinly sliced beef or pork is generously filled with garlic, parsley, breadcrumbs, grated cheese (Parmesan or Pecorino), or cured meats (prosciutto, salami), then pan seared and left to simmer in a tomato-based sauce.
This is a Chinese white liquor that is an acquired taste. First, make a greeting, thank nature by spilling a small amount, take a sip to show your gratitude towards your host, say “Cheers!” and finish your glass.
103. Bubur Ayam
Porridge may not be the most appetizing meal ever, but in combination with rice cooked in chicken broth, shredded chicken, spices like garlic, ginger, shallots, with a chili or sweet sauce, you may well be swayed.
The southwestern coast of India, mainly Goa, will impress you with beautiful beaches, a vibrant culture, and diverse cuisine. Bebinca is a Goan layered cake-like dessert spiced with nutmeg or cardamom, customarily served for special occasions and celebrations.
So it’s true, B does stand for Best!
Related: 100 Foods that Start with A