Best 15 Turkish Desserts to Try

If you’re planning a trip to Turkey, one of the best things about it is getting to try all kinds of delicious Turkish desserts. From baklava to kunefe and everything in between, there are countless traditional treats that will make your sweet tooth happy. Whether you want something light and refreshing or indulgent and decadent, these are some of the best Turkish desserts for every taste! With their unique flavors and textures, they’ll be sure to take your vacation experience up a notch. So, if you’re looking for something special that will really bring out the flavor of your travels in Turkey, here’s a list of some must-try Turkish desserts!

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Turkish Dessert

History of Turkish Desserts

Turkish desserts have been enjoyed in the country for centuries, with many of them being passed down through generations. From helva to lokma and tavuk gogsu, Turkish treats are known for their sweet flavors, creamy textures, and unique combinations of ingredients. The history of these desserts can be traced back to the Ottoman Empire when sweet dishes that were often served at banquets or special occasions. As time went on, more recipes were created as cooks experimented with different flavorings and ingredients to create new and exciting treats. Today, Turkish desserts are still just as popular as ever – bringing joy and to families traveling to Turkey.

What are Common Flavors in Turkish Desserts?

Turkish desserts are renowned for their unique flavors and textures, which have been passed down through generations. Common ingredients used in Turkish desserts include honey, nuts, spices like cinnamon and cardamom, fruits such as dates and figs, dairy products such as yogurt or clotted cream, semolina flour, and sweetened pastry dough. These ingredients often come together to create a perfectly balanced combination of sweetness with a hint of tartness that makes these treats so special. Additionally, many traditional Turkish desserts also feature a crunchy texture from the addition of nuts or fried breadcrumbs.

Learn more about Turkish Cuisine in our Turkish Food Guide.

Best Turkish Desserts and Sweets to Try

Turkish Baklava

1. Turkish Baklava

Turkish baklava is a classic sweet treat that’s been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. With its flaky layers of phyllo dough and decadent filling of chopped nuts, it’s easy to see why this dessert has become so popular all over the world. The most traditional version usually consists of pistachios or walnuts and is drenched with honey syrup or rosewater, making it truly irresistible! Baklava can be served as an after-dinner treat or even as part of breakfast. No matter when you enjoy it, Turkish baklava will make your taste buds dance with joy.

kunefe turkish dessert

2. Kunefe

Kunefe is a traditional Turkish dessert that’s sure to make your taste buds sing. This delicious treat consists of thin layers of shredded phyllo dough filled with sweet cheese and topped with sugar syrup or honey. It can be served either hot or cold, depending on your preference, but it’s always incredibly indulgent and satisfying! Kunefe has become increasingly popular in recent years due to its unique texture and flavor, so if you’re looking for something special to try while visiting Turkey, this is definitely the way to go. Whether you enjoy it as an after-dinner dessert or as part of breakfast, kunefe will certainly hit the spot!

Turkish Delight

3. Turkish Delight (Lokum)

Turkish delight, or lokum, is a traditional Turkish dessert that has been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. This sweet treat consists of cubes of jelly-like confection made from starch and sugar syrup, often flavored with rosewater or lemon. It’s typically served with powdered sugar on top and can be either soft and chewy or hard and crunchy depending on how it’s cooked. Turkish delight can also be filled with nuts, dried fruits, chocolate chips, and coconut flakes – the possibilities are endless!

Turkish Ice Cream

4. Turkish Ice Cream (Dondurma)

Dondurma is a traditional Turkish dessert that is sure to tantalize your taste buds and a favorite Turkish dessert for kids. This unique ice cream is made from salep, which gives it a distinct texture and flavor unlike any other treat. Dondurma comes in many different flavors, ranging from the classic vanilla to more exotic options like pistachio or rosewater. It’s also often served with chopped nuts and dried fruits for added sweetness and crunch.

Turkish Desserts Kabak Tatlisi

5. Turkish Pumpkin Dessert (Tabak Tatlisi)

One of the most beloved Turkish desserts in Antalya is the pumpkin dessert. This sweet treat is made by combining mashed pumpkin, milk, sugar, and spices to create a creamy custard-like texture. It’s often served with raisins and nuts for added flavor and crunch. The sweet flavors combined with the nutty notes make this a truly unique dessert that will tantalize your taste buds! Whether you enjoy it as an after-dinner treat or as part of breakfast, this delicious pumpkin dessert from Antalya will be sure to satisfy your cravings for something sweet.

Rice Pudding Sutlac

6. Turkish Rice Pudding (Firinda Sutlac)

For those looking for something a bit lighter and more refreshing, Turkish rice pudding (Firinda Sutlac) is an excellent choice. This classic dessert is made by cooking white rice with milk, sugar, and spices until it forms a creamy custard-like consistency. It’s often served chilled with cinnamon on top or accompanied by raisins, nuts, honey syrup or dried fruits for added sweetness. With its unique flavor and texture combination, Turkish rice pudding will be sure to tantalize your taste buds! Plus, this simple yet delicious dessert is perfect for any occasion – from after-dinner treats to breakfast dishes.

Tulumba

7. Turkish Tulumba

Turkish tulumba is sweet treat consisting of deep-fried dough soaked in syrup or honey, making it both crispy and sticky at the same time. It’s often served with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top for added flavor, as well as chopped nuts and dried fruits for texture.

Helva

8. Helva

Helva is a traditional Turkish dessert that has been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. This sweet treat consists of sesame paste, sugar, and butter cooked together until it reaches a thick consistency. It’s often served with honey or syrup on top and can be either soft and creamy or crunchy depending on how it’s prepared. Helva is one of the most popular desserts in Turkey due to its unique flavor and texture combination – it’s both sweet and nutty at the same time. You may find this on the table for Turkish breakfast as well.

Asure Noah's Pudding

9. Ashure – Noah’s Pudding

Ashure, also known as Noah’s Pudding, is a traditional Turkish dessert made with grains, fruits and nuts that has been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. Ashure typically consists of ingredients like wheat berries, barley, chickpeas, dried apricots or dates, raisins, hazelnuts or walnuts – all boiled together with sugar syrup for sweetness. It’s often served chilled with honey on top and can be either soft and creamy or crunchy depending on how it’s made.

Lokma

10. Lokma

Lokma is a classic Turkish dessert that has been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. This sweet treat consists of deep-fried dough balls soaked in syrup or honey, making it both crispy and sticky at the same time. It’s often served with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top for added flavor, as well as chopped nuts and dried fruits for texture. Lokma is a favorite of kids – creating sweet memories in childhood.

Turkish Almond Pudding

11. Turkish Almond Pudding (Keskul)

Turkish Almond Pudding is a delicious and unique dessert that has been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. This traditional treat consists of crushed almonds, sugar, milk or cream, and spices cooked together until it forms a thick pudding-like consistency. The sweet flavors combined with the nutty notes make this a truly mouthwatering treat that will tantalize your taste buds!

Tavuk Gogsu

12. Tavuk Gogsu

Tavuk Gogsu is a classic Turkish dessert that has been enjoyed in Turkey for centuries. This sweet and creamy treat consists of cooked chicken, milk, sugar, and spices which are combined to create a custard-like texture. The combination of savory flavors with the sweetness of the milk and sugar make Tavuk Gogsu an unforgettable experience! It’s often served chilled with cinnamon on top or accompanied by raisins, nuts, honey syrup or dried fruits for added sweetness.

kazandibi

13. Kazandibi

Kazandibi is a creamy, custard-like treat is made by cooking milk and sugar until they thicken and caramelize at the bottom of the pot. The resulting pudding is then topped with a crunchy layer of burnt sugar which adds an extra level of flavor and texture to this already delicious dish. It’s often served chilled with cinnamon on top or accompanied by raisins, nuts, honey syrup or dried fruits for added sweetness – making it one of the most popular desserts in Turkey!

Pismaniye

14. Pismaniye

Pismaniye is a sweet treat consists of thin strands of spun sugar, butter and flour cooked together until they form an airy texture. It’s often served with honey or syrup on top and can be either soft and creamy or crunchy depending on how it’s prepared.

Zerde Turkish Desserts

15. Zerde

This sweet treat consists of rice, sugar, and spices cooked together until it reaches a thick consistency. It’s often served with honey or syrup on top and can be either soft and creamy or crunchy depending on how it’s prepared. It’s often served chilled with cinnamon or cardamom on top for added flavor, as well as chopped nuts and dried fruits for texture.

What is the Best Turkish Dessert?

Baklava is widely considered to be the best Turkish dessert due to its unique combination of sweet and savory flavors. This traditional treat consists of layers of thin, flaky dough filled with chopped nuts or pistachios and soaked in a syrup made from honey or sugar. The nutty filling combined with the sweetness of the syrup makes Baklava a truly delicious experience that will tantalize your taste buds! It’s also incredibly versatile – you can serve it as-is for an easy snack, or dress it up with fresh fruit and cream for a more sophisticated dish. No matter how you choose to enjoy it, Baklava is sure to be loved by all who try it!

What Drinks are Served with Turkish Desserts?

Turkish coffee and tea are often served as accompaniments to traditional Turkish desserts. The strong, earthy flavor of the coffee pairs perfectly with the sweetness of many desserts – from Baklava to Lokma – while the milder flavor of tea makes for a refreshing contrast. Both beverages provide an interesting complexity that complements rather than overwhelms the flavors in these delicious treats. Whether you’re enjoying a classic dessert like baklava or something more modern, Turkish coffee and tea make excellent additions to any meal.

How Do You Say Dessert in Turkish?

If you’re looking to explore the delicious world of Turkish desserts, it’s important to know how to say dessert in Turkish. The word for “dessert” in Turkish is tatlı, which literally translates as “sweet.” You can use this word when ordering a dessert at a restaurant or cafe, and also when referring to any type of sweet treat. For example, if you want some baklava, you would ask for tatlı olan baklava – which literally means “the sweet one (baklava)”. Knowing how to say dessert in Turkish will help ensure that your culinary journey through Turkey is a truly enjoyable experience!

Turkish Desserts

Final Thoughts on the Best Turkish Desserts

Turkey is a nation with a rich history and culture, which can be seen in its diverse array of desserts. Whether you’re looking for something sweet like Tavuk Gogsu or Kandibi, or something savory like Zerde, there are plenty of delicious Turkish treats to explore. But if you want the absolute best that Turkey has to offer, then Baklava should top your list. With layers of flaky dough filled with nuts and soaked in honey syrup, this timeless classic will tantalize your taste buds and have you coming back for more! So next time you’re visiting Turkey don’t forget to sample some traditional Turkish sweets – they’re sure to make any trip unforgettable!

Best Turkish Desserts to Try