Taiwan 2024. Quick, Delicious and Affordable Eats

Eating well is easy in Taiwan. Most of our meals are unplanned. Head out to a food rich district, wander around and eat what comes up. Andrew Zimmern: “If it looks good, eat it!!!”

Night markets are ubiquitous in Taiwan. Colorful and vibrant, affordable and for the most part, delicious.

The best single Night Market food on this trip was a Pepper Bun. Spiced meat and Green Onion in a crispy toasty bun, freshly roasted in a charcoal oven. Da wife loves them, but I’d not been impressed with the few versions I’d sampled. Up until now.

The queque in the Raohe St. Night Market speaks for the quality and popularity of this Michelin recommended stall. The buns are cranked out perfectly in an efficient assembly line. Turnover is quick, your bun is handed to you piping hot from the oven.


We hit at least a couple of night markets in each Taiwanese city/town we visit.

Taiwanese Sausage are one of my favorites. A savory Pork Sausage is served in a Sweet Rice “Bun”. The Bun is Sweet Rice encased in a Pork Intestine casing with some peanuts. I love the slight gamey offalness of the bun, and rarely order the actual pork sausage itself. These are quite filling, and must leave room for all the other goodies.

Dumplings are everywhere. A stack of steaming bamboo steamer baskets is an irresistable draw.

Taiwan Drive Through.

No, Momofuku did not invent their signature Pork Bun. David Chang was wise to riff on this Taiwanese classic.

Lu Rou Fan, Braised Pork Belly Rice. A slab of Pork Belly instead of the usual minced Pork. Ugly delicious!!!


Japanese Conbini (Convenience Stores) get all the love from just about every media source, especially the much loved Egg Salad Sando.

Convenience stores are all over Taiwan. Not unusual to have a 7-11 across the street from another 7-11, or sandwiched between a Family Mart and OK Mart, metres from a Hi-Life.

We stopped into Kaohsiung’s largest Family Mart one morning for a quick coffee (yeah, right!!). Roomy, well-lit, well stocked and clean. Large cooked food selection, comfortable dining area… and self service LAUNDRY FACILITY!!!

Stuffed Chicken Wings, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Pastries, Hot Dogs (of course) and much much more.

We grabbed a couple of breakfast items (it was 7am) to sustain us for our day of rigorous foraging.


Oden hot pot?

I love the ice cream selection at Taiwanese convenience stores. Especially those ice cream sandwiches made out of HK-style waffles, bubble tea and ice cream.


Oden in Tom Yum Soup Broth!!! Not your run of the mill oden pot.

Gotta try some more of the ice cream offerings. The freakin’ heat is turning even my wife into an ice cream eater.


Looks like a 7am but breakfast beer ?

It was time for Happy Hour back home.

Vacation time. Rules will be bent.


Great way of thinking/enjoying life

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You obviously do not know our friend, Mr. Google_Gourmet.


One of the better bites in Kaohsiung was at a fried rice restaurant. Growing up, we would never order/pay for fried rice in a restaurant! Taiwanese have no such reservation or bias.

We stopped in this tiny eatery for a bite to get the appetitie juices going for the night ahead.

Sakura Shrimp is harvested in commercial quantities only in Shizuoka (Japan) and a small area off the Taiwan coast, during two short harvest seasons. We had a plate of Stir Fried Rice with Sakura Shrimp and Egg, USD$3.39. Pork Liver Soup USD$2.16.

Sakura Shrimp are almost always only available dried, fresh sakura shrimp is always a special treat to be savored. This fried rice was excellent, definitely a specialty.

The pork liver soup, meh.


The area of Shizuoka City where sakura shrimp are mostly caught is in Yui. They have a big festival celebrating it. “Kakiage” (a type of tempura fritter), with sakura shrimp, is very popular all over eastern and central Shizuoka Prefecture. In the rest of Japan, sakura shrimp are largely an expensive delicacy.


BTW, while “kaki” means both “oyster” and “persimmon” in Japanese, the “kaki” in “kakiage” doesn’t refer to either…it comes from the expression “kakimazeru” or to “mix/stir” (“age” means to fry like in “karaage”…which directly translated means “fried Chinese-style”.)


If I recall correctly, you lived in Shizuoka for some time. We only spent spent 3 nights in town, and loved the low key small town feel. Luckily for us, it happend to be Sakura Ebi season. Available on rice, kakiage and even on pizza.

I did enjoy the Shiroebi in Tayama even more. Shiroebi sashimi is to die for.

We will gladly visit Shizuoka again, not only for the Ebi, but for all the town has to offer.

Yes, I lived in Shizuoka City for 2 years (2021-2023). Shiroebi (“white shrimp”) is indeed from Toyama and much harder to find outside the local area than sakura shrimp is outside of Shizuoka.

If you do get up to Toyama again, please try “hotaru ika” (“firefly squid”) another local delicacy. They are bioluminescent!



Ha, my wife had her fill of hotaru ika during our recent trip. It is indeed yummy. Would love to see them in the wild, would be a lovely sight.

If I recall correctly, we bought some from a Naha fish market and some other venues.

She even bought it from supermarkets to eat back in our hotel room, while “sake tasting”.


We put beansprouts in almost every other noodle stir-fry, but never in fried rice.

Now, seeing the fried rice with sakura shrimps and beansprouts in your pic, we’re asking ourselves, “Why not?” :joy: :+1:


Notice how the eyes follow you around the room?


I’ve only very recently started to fully appreciate beansprouts. Really adds a juicy snap and crispness to salads, soups, noodles (dry and wet) and lots more. When it gets a little long in the tooth, into a pot of soup!!