Boston’s culinary scene mixes the influences of its longtime Italian community with classic New England specialities and the latest US foodie trends. The result is a city that’s passionate about food and tempts visitors with everything from cider donuts to clam chowder. Read our tips for Boston’s must-try treats and activities.
Top of Boston’s food tree is its North End district—where the cobbled Little Italy quarter boasts pizzerias, bakeries, and salumeria (cured-meat delis). Head here for every imaginable variety of Neapolitan-style thin-crust pizza, authentic Italian cheeses and meats, and Sicilian cannoli—pastry shells brimming with cheese, chocolate, and other creamy fillings.
Italian specialities aside, Boston is also hot on New England staples. Dig into clam chowder, a hearty clam-and-cream broth perfect in winter. Other must-tries include lobster rolls—hotdog buns stuffed with lobster flesh—and cinnamon-sprinkled cider donuts served with hot apple cider.
Chocolate heads the sweet-treat list. Artisanal shops sprinkle the city’s Beacon Hill area, offering everything from organic sweet and savory chocolates to spice-infused hot chocolate. The city also boasts serious vegan-food credentials, with a growing clutch of cafés and eateries specializing in plant-based goodies such as vegan ice creams, smoothies, and desserts.
- Take a tour of Boston’s artisanal chocolatiers to sample the city’s decadently flavored chocolates, from organic delights to chile-infused hot chocolate.
- Stroll the cobbled North End to enjoy the thin and crispy pizzas of Little Italy.
- Combine tastings of Italian specialities with a walk along Boston’s Freedom Trail on a combo food-and-culture day trip.
- Explore the city’s vegan repertoire on a tour of its Jamaica Plain district.