13 Tel Aviv street food icons and where to find them

The city that never sleeps ensures that delicious food is always within reach, whether for a quick lunch, a late-night snack, or a meal to satisfy post-party cravings. Here’s a list of street food in Tel Aviv and where to find them.

Tel Aviv street food culture is a vibrant blend of the city’s diverse communities, offering a gustatory exploration of tradition and innovation. This is one of the reasons why I fell in love with Tel Aviv and eventually ended up living here.

tel aviv street food

The city thrives on its thriving food scene, where the streets buzz with energy, aromas, and flavors that hint at its Mediterranean location and the diverse influences of immigrants from different corners of the world.

I have never seen a city where every nationality has its food present. Here are my best recommendations for street food in Tel Aviv, compiled from my 1.5 years of experience living here!

💡 Fun fact: Did you know that Tel Aviv has the highest vegan restaurants per capita in the world?

Change how you travel and see the world by going deep into the culture. Come and travel with me!

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🗺️ Tel Aviv street food map

tel aviv street food

👉🏽 Open this map of Tel Aviv street food in full view

🥘 Best street food in Tel Aviv

Falafel

Falafel is deep-fried balls or patties made from ground chickpeas or fava beans or a combination of both. It’s traditionally served in a pita, which acts as a pocket, or wrapped in a flatbread known as laffa.

street food in tel aviv

The falafel balls are topped with salads, pickled vegetables, hot sauce, and drizzled with tahini-based sauces. Falafel balls may also be eaten alone as a snack or served as part of a group of appetizers.

📍 Falafel Gabriel, Dr Saadia Falafel, and Falafel Gabay are the three best recommendations for falafel street food in Tel Aviv.

Hummus

Hummus is a staple in Israeli cuisine, a smooth and creamy dip made from cooked, mashed chickpeas blended with tahini, lemon juice, and garlic.

street food in tel aviv

It’s usually served with olive oil and often garnished with paprika or fresh parsley. Hummus is often filled with warm pita bread and can be used as a spread, a dip, or a side dish.

Some hummus dishes also incorporate additional ingredients like ground meat or whole chickpeas.

📍 Abu Hassan and Abu Adham are the best places for hummus street food in Tel Aviv. For upper-scale and gourmet hummus, go to Shlomo and Doron.

Shawarma

Shawarma is a popular street food in Israel, borrowed from Middle Eastern cuisine. It consists of meat cut into thin slices, stacked in a cone-like shape, and roasted on a slowly-turning vertical rotisserie.

street food in tel aviv

The meat, often chicken, lamb, or beef, is shaved off and usually served in pita bread with tahini, hummus, pickled vegetables, and salads.

📍 Hakosem, Jasmino, and Mifgash Rambam are the best places to eat shawarma street food in Tel Aviv, especially if it’s your first-time.

Sabich

Sabich is an Israeli sandwich, consisting of a pita stuffed with fried eggplant, hard-boiled eggs, salad, tahini, amba (a tangy mango pickle), and sometimes boiled potatoes.

street food in tel aviv

Originating from the Iraqi Jewish community, Sabich has gained popularity as a street food in Israel, served as a quick and filling meal.

📍 The best places to eat sabich street food in Tel Aviv are Sabich Frishman and Sabich Tchernikhovski.

Burekas

Burekas are flaky, baked pastries filled with cheese, spinach, potatoes, or mushrooms. Originating from Sephardic Jewish cuisine, Burekas are a popular snack in Israel.

street food in tel aviv

They are usually made from puff pastry and topped with sesame seeds, served with hard-boiled eggs, pickles, and a tomato-based sauce on the side.

📍The best places to eat burekas street food in Tel Aviv are Nonstop Burekas, Burekas Amikam and Burekas shel Aba.

Shashlik (Shish Kebab)

Shashlik, or shish kebab, is a skewer of marinated meat, typically lamb, chicken, or beef, and sometimes interspersed with vegetables like peppers, onions, and tomatoes.

tel aviv street food

It’s grilled over an open flame and often served with various dips and salads.

📍 Where to eat Shashlik street food in Tel Aviv: Pinat HaShlosha, Samarkand or Abu Nassar. These are Persian restaurants so make sure to check out other items on their menu!

Shakshuka

Shakshuka is a classic Israeli dish of eggs poached in a sauce of tomatoes, chili peppers, and onions, spiced with cumin. Originating from North African cuisines, it’s served in a cast-iron pan or a tajine and eaten with bread to mop up the sauce.

tel aviv street food

📍 The best place to have Shakshuka street food in Tel Aviv is Doctor Shakshuka.

Jachnun

Jachnun is a traditional Yemenite Jewish dish that has become a staple of Israeli cuisine. It’s prepared from rolled dough that is slowly baked overnight.

tel aviv street food

The result is a slightly sweet, baked delicacy that is slightly crispy on the outside, but soft and tender on the inside. Jachnun is traditionally served on Shabbat morning with a crushed or grated tomato dip, hard-boiled eggs, and a spicy condiment known as zhug.

📍 The best place to have Jachnun street food in Tel Aviv is Jachnun Mul Hayam or go to a local home that does it! This is not commonly found in Israel, as the process is quite extensive.

Knafeh

Knafeh is a traditional Middle Eastern dessert made from thin noodle-like pastry, or alternatively fine semolina dough, soaked in sweet, sugar-based syrup. Depending on the regional variation, it’s layered with cheese or other ingredients such as cream or nuts.

tel aviv street food

In Israel, it’s often enjoyed as a street food and is particularly popular among the country’s Arab community. The pastry is often colored with orange food coloring and typically topped with crushed pistachios.

Gourmet versions have appeared in recent years with fillings like chocolate cream, espresso, and even caramel. Despite their association with Hanukkah, they can be found year-round in bakeries across Israel.

📍 The best traditional knafeh spots in Tel Aviv are Yaffa Knafeh, Knafeh Sheinkin, and Knafeh Al Jamila.

😋 Tel Aviv street food markets

street food in tel aviv
  • Carmel Market (Shuk Ha’Carmel): Tel Aviv’s largest and busiest market, Carmel Market offers a wide variety of foods, including fresh produce, spices, baked goods, and street food, alongside clothes and home goods.
  • Levinsky Market: In the heart of Tel Aviv’s hip Florentin neighborhood, this market is a paradise for spice lovers, with an array of dried fruits, nuts, spices, and specialty foods. It’s known for its Balkan and Persian delicacies, reflecting the immigrant cultures of the original traders.
  • Sarona Market: This is Tel Aviv’s most upscale market, located in a restored 19th-century German Templar Colony. It’s a culinary center, with both local and imported gourmet foods, and houses several high-quality restaurants and food stalls offering everything from oysters to craft beer, along with boutique shops.
  • HaTikva Market: Located in the Hatikva neighborhood, this is a less touristy but authentic local market. It’s a great place to find exotic spices, fresh fish, meats, and produce. It’s also known for some of the best, low-key ethnic food spots in the city.
  • Jaffa Flea Market (Shuk HaPishpeshim): Beyond just food, Jaffa Flea Market in the ancient port district offers antiques, vintage clothes, furniture, jewelry, and an eclectic mix of new and second-hand items. This area comes alive in the evening with its numerous hip restaurants and bars.
  • Nachlat Binyamin Arts and Crafts Market: This bi-weekly market is held on Tuesdays and Fridays, showcasing the works of local artists and artisans. It’s located adjacent to Carmel Market and offers a wide variety of handmade jewelry, crafts, art, and street performances.
  • Dizengoff Square Art Market: A unique open-air exhibition and sale of Israeli art, held every Friday and Tuesday, this is a great spot to find original art at affordable prices.

⁉️ FAQ: Tel Aviv street food

The most popular street food in Israel is arguably the falafel. These deep-fried chickpea balls served in pita bread with a mix of salads, pickles, and sauces have become a national symbol, and you can find them almost everywhere, from street vendors to casual eateries.

Tel Aviv is particularly known for its vibrant street food scene. Key dishes include falafel, shawarma, sabich (an Israeli sandwich of eggplant, boiled eggs, salad, and tahini), and hummus. Tel Aviv’s food scene also reflects the city’s multicultural makeup, with food stalls offering a range of global cuisines.

Israeli street food refers to the variety of quick, affordable, and delicious foods available from vendors throughout Israel. Various Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, and North African cultures influence it. The most famous street foods include falafel, shawarma, sabich, and hummus, often served in pita bread, alongside a vast array of fresh salads and pickles.

🇮🇱 Tel Aviv travel recommendations

  • Find your way through local markets, unique eateries, and traditional restaurants, exploring the city’s rich culinary history and diverse flavors with a food tour in Tel Aviv.
  • Discover Tel Aviv’s dynamic street art scene through a walking graffiti tour. Uncover hidden gems in alleyways, explore colorful murals in hip neighborhoods, and learn about the city’s culture through the eyes of its artists.
  • Explore the winding alleyways of Jaffa, one of the world’s oldest ports, rich in history and culture. Visit ancient landmarks, marvel at the stunning architecture, and experience the vibrant atmosphere of bustling markets.
  • Experience Tel Aviv’s 24/7 nightlife in the Rothschild area. Dive into the city’s thriving music scene, sip cocktails in stylish bars, and dance until dawn in underground clubs.
  • Carmel Market (Shuk HaCarmel): This bustling outdoor market is a feast for the senses, offering a variety of fresh produce, local spices, baked goods, clothing, and more. A great place to experience local life and taste traditional Israeli food.
  • Tel Aviv Museum of Art: Home to a broad spectrum of contemporary and classic art, the museum hosts works by leading Israeli and international artists. The stunning architecture is a masterpiece itself.
  • Jaffa Port and Old City: Steeped in history, Jaffa offers a mix of ancient ruins, art galleries, and trendy boutiques. The picturesque port area offers stunning views and excellent dining options.
  • Neve Tzedek: Tel Aviv’s first neighborhood, Neve Tzedek’s charming streets are filled with beautifully restored Bauhaus-style buildings, boutiques, and cafes. It’s a hub of culture and architecture.
  • Tel Aviv Beaches: Stretching along the city’s western edge, the beaches offer a perfect spot for sunbathing, surfing, volleyball, or simply enjoying the lively beachside promenade.
  • Shila – Sharon Cohen’s Kitchen & Bar: A culinary hotspot in Tel Aviv, Shila serves modern Israeli cuisine in a lively, bustling environment. Known for its top-quality meats and seafood, the menu offers a variety of dishes that reflect Israel’s diverse food culture.
  • Port Said: A local favorite for Middle Eastern cuisine, Port Said offers a creative menu with an Israeli twist. The vibrant setting, excellent food, and inventive cocktails, combined with music from vinyl records, create a unique and enjoyable dining experience.
  • Ouzeria: Offering a Mediterranean-inspired menu, Ouzeria serves dishes that showcase the richness of Israeli cuisine. Its stylish decor, creative and flavorful food, and extensive wine list make it a great place for a culinary adventure.
  • Radio EPGB: This underground bar offers a unique mix of music, art, and alcohol. Known for its eclectic crowd and electric energy, it’s an ideal place for meeting new people and enjoying Tel Aviv’s vibrant nightlife.
  • Sputnik: A trendy bar in the heart of Tel Aviv’s nightlife district, Sputnik offers a large outdoor space, cozy corners, and creative cocktails. It draws a friendly, diverse crowd, making it a great spot for socializing.
  • The Norman Tel Aviv: A luxury boutique hotel in the heart of Tel Aviv, The Norman blends the elegance of the 1920s with modern comfort. It features beautifully designed rooms, a rooftop pool with city views, a wellness area, and top-class dining options.
  • Brown TLV Urban Hotel: Centrally located in Tel Aviv, this boutique hotel offers comfortable, stylish rooms with a vintage touch. Enjoy amenities like a rooftop lounge, complimentary bicycles for city exploration, and a cozy bar. The personalized service and convenient location make it an excellent choice for a mid-range accommodation option.
  • Florentine Hostel: This modern, clean hostel offers a range of private and dormitory rooms in the hip Florentin neighborhood. Its communal kitchen, cozy lounge area, and friendly staff provide an excellent opportunity to meet fellow travelers. Its location offers easy access to restaurants, shops, and nightlife.
  • Israel is currently experiencing a housing shortage for locals because of platforms like Airbnb or Vrbo. The local community would appreciate it if you book local-run hotels and accommodations.
  • Tel Aviv is a walking city so there’s no need to worry about transportation. You can walk anywhere, take a bus, or rent a bike. Just make sure to book an airport taxi transfer as the airport is far away from the center.
  • Don’t travel to Tel Aviv without insurance. Ekta Traveling is the recommended insurance (for travelers ages 2 months to 100 years old).

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