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High Should-Attempt Canadian Meals for Foodies and Vacationers

On the lookout for the most effective Canadian meals to eat when visiting Canada? Whereas Canadian delicacies might not boast the quick recognition of Italian, Moroccan, or Greek culinary traditions, it holds a allure and variety all its personal, reflective of the nation’s huge and diversified panorama. Through the years, Canada has steadily crafted a definite meals identification that warmly embraces its multicultural roots and the considerable pure sources of the Nice White North. If there’s one time period that encapsulates the essence of Canadian delicacies, it’s ‘eclectic.’

From the sweetness of Quebec’s sugar pies to the savory delights of Nova Scotia’s seafood, the most effective conventional Canadian meals is about taking the acquainted and infusing it with a twist that’s as sudden as it’s pleasant. This culinary journey invitations meals lovers and vacationers alike to find the quirky and modern flavors that outline Canadian delicacies, a celebration of creativity and cultural fusion in each chunk.

What Is Canadian Delicacies

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No one says, “Let’s exit for Canadian meals tonight.” We, as Canadians, typically say, “Would you like Thai meals right this moment?” What about Korean or Japanese meals? Different meals worldwide have a definite theme and taste, however not Canada. Conventional Canadian meals are a mishmash, and that’s how we prefer it!

Conventional Canadian Meals

Canadian dishes don’t have a lot that makes them stand out from the remainder of the world besides for his or her quirkiness and affect from different cultures. You identify a rustic, we have now the meals. Even in small cities throughout Canada, you’ll find all kinds of worldwide delicacies. So, when you consider it, that’s what makes Canadian meals distinctive. We’re various in each side of life in Canada, and meals isn’t any exception.

We’ve got a number of favorites that individuals might already know and love and a few conventional Canadian meals that the remainder of the world might or might not learn about, so I believed I might share a listing of meals distinctive to Canada.

1. Poutine – Quebec

best traditional canadian food poutine
Poutine – The quintessential Canadian meals

I believe the world is beginning to learn about, love, and undertake our little secret, Poutine. This easy but indulgent Canadian dish accommodates three key substances: crispy French fries, squeaky cheese curds, and a wealthy, savory gravy. It’s sinfully scrumptious. Poutine is the last word consolation meals and our go-to snack for a hangover.

  • French fries (ideally thick-cut)
  • Contemporary cheese curds
  • Brown gravy (generally a mixture of rooster, veal, and turkey inventory)

Poutine is our beloved Canadian dish, transcending its Quebecois origins to turn out to be a nationwide consolation meals staple. The center of poutine lies in its unpretentious roots—a hearty, comforting dish typically loved in informal diners and pubs. It’s a logo of Canadian culinary traditions, turning easy, available substances right into a dish that’s higher than the sum of its components.

We’ve got recipes for poutine throughout Canada with completely different toppings. The fundamental poutine recipe is cheese, gravy, and fries, however they love making Lobster poutine on the East Coast, and in Alberta, beef poutine is popularly made with Alberta beef. Pulled pork poutine is one other common possibility. The extra you load it with, the tastier it will get! It may be discovered throughout the nation. As a matter of truth, Poutine is usually considered Canada’s nationwide dish!

2. Nanaimo Bars – British Columbia

traditional canadian food nanaimo bars
Nanaimo bars – conventional Canadian dessert

Nanaimo Bars are a basic candy Canadian dish originating from the town of Nanaimo in British Columbia. These wealthy, no-bake dessert bars comprise three scrumptious layers: a crumbly, nutty base, a creamy custard-flavored center, and a easy chocolate topping. They could be known as a unique identify elsewhere, however relaxation assured, Nanaimo Bars had been invented in Canada. Try extra about British Columbia The Greatest Locations to Go to in British Columbia


  • For the bottom layer: Graham cracker crumbs, coconut, almonds (or walnuts), cocoa, butter, sugar, and egg.
  • For the center layer: Custard powder, butter, heavy cream, and icing sugar.
  • For the highest layer: Semi-sweet chocolate and butter.

The Nanaimo Bar’s origins date again to the early Fifties and have since reached past British Columbia to turn out to be a nationwide favourite. This common Canadian meals is at all times featured in bakeries, cafes, and dessert menus throughout Canada. The mix of a crunchy base, a gentle, candy center, and a chocolatey prime makes these bars a novel and indulgent deal with.

What units the Nanaimo Bar aside is its no-bake nature, making it a preferred alternative for dwelling bakers, particularly throughout the hotter months when turning on the oven is much less interesting. The bars are additionally a staple throughout the vacation season, typically featured in Christmas baking assortments.

3. Butter Tarts

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These are nonetheless my favourite desserts. If I am going to a buffet with butter tarts on the desk, you might be positive I’ll seize a pair.  Butter Tarts are a quintessential Canadian dessert, embodying the simplicity and richness of the nation’s baking traditions. These small, particular person tarts encompass a flaky pastry shell stuffed with a gooey, buttery combination of sugar, eggs, and sometimes raisins or nuts.


  • Pastry dough (often a primary mixture of flour, butter, and water)
  • Butter
  • Brown sugar
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla extract
  • Non-obligatory: Raisins, walnuts, or pecans

The origins of Butter Tarts are traced again to the early settlers of Canada, with roots in Scottish and French pastry traditions. Over time, they’ve turn out to be a beloved deal with nationwide, typically discovered at native bakeries, group gatherings, and household tables. Our hometown of Paris, Ontario, even has the annual butter tart competition.

The allure of the Butter Tart lies in its simplicity and the comforting, home made really feel it embodies. Every tart is a pleasant mixture of a crispy crust and a gentle, sticky heart, providing a stability of textures and flavors which have made it a Canadian favourite. Regional variations of the tart exist, with debates over the inclusion of raisins or the specified consistency of the filling – runny or agency. My private favorite are pecan butter tarts.

4. Beaver Tails

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Head to any vacationer vacation spot, and you may you should definitely see folks munching on Beaver Tails. No, they aren’t what you suppose they’re. Beaver Tails are delectable treats made from fried dough formed like a beaver’s tail.

It may be topped with something, however we like the unique sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon.  Different toppings embrace ice cream, whipped cream, or jellies. Learn extra: High Issues to do in Ottawa

5. Maple Syrup

traditional canadian food boiling maple syrup in snow

What vacationer doesn’t go away Canada with no bottle of Maple Syrup in tow? The maple tree is a nationwide image of Canada, and its syrup is delicious. 

Come to Canada within the lifeless of winter, and you may take a tour out to the woods and watch them faucet a Maple tree for recent syrup. If you happen to go to Ottawa in Winterlude, Quebec, throughout Carnival or any Canadian winter competition,, you’ll at all times discover somebody rolling recent boiling maple syrup over snow to create a scrumptious maple lollipop. You gotta strive it; it’s scrumptious. Convey some maple syrup dwelling with you and smother it over pancakes, french toast, sausage, or bacon. Maple syrup makes something style higher.

6. Hawaiian Pizza

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Opposite to its identify, Hawaiian Pizza is a Canadian creation. It’s well-known for its uncommon mixture of ham and pineapple toppings, creating an ideal mix of candy and savory flavors.


  • Pizza dough
  • Tomato sauce
  • Ham
  • Pineapple chunks
  • Mozzarella cheese

Invented in Ontario within the Sixties, Hawaiian Pizza has sparked debates about pineapple on pizza however stays a preferred alternative worldwide. It was once my favorite pizza and the one form I ordered from Pizza Pizza all by school.

7. The Bloody Caesar Cocktail

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The Caesar is unquestionably Canada’s nationwide drink. A Bloody Caesar is so much like America’s Bloody Mary, besides we use Clamato Juice over tomato juice. Clamato juice is a mixture of clam and tomato, however don’t let that flip you off. It’s scrumptious.

The Bloody Caesar is a beloved cocktail in Canada, and we have now adopted it as our nation’s nationwide drink. It’s a savory, spicy concoction with a novel Canadian twist: clamato juice which is a mix of clam juice, and tomato juice.


  • Vodka
  • Clamato juice
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Scorching sauce (akin to Tabasco)
  • Lime juice
  • Celery salt
  • Floor black pepper
  • Garnishes: celery stick, lime wedge, pickled greens

The Bloody Caesar was invented in 1969 by bartender Walter Chell in Calgary, Alberta. He was impressed by the Italian dish Spaghetti alle Vongole and sought to seize its essence in a drink. Chell mashed clams to combine with tomato juice, creating the primary clamato juice, which grew to become the distinctive ingredient of the cocktail.

This drink is a favourite not solely in Calgary however in any respect Canadian bars and eating places and holds a particular place in our nation’s cultural panorama. It’s typically loved throughout brunches, on Canada Day, or my favourite, as a ‘hair of the canine’ treatment. The Bloody Caesar is customizable, with varied garnishes like celery stick, pickled beans or peppers and ranges of spiciness, making it a private expertise for every particular person.

A variety of work goes right into a Caesar made with vodka and clamato juice, from choosing the right glass, to the precise Clamato juice, rimming the glass correctly and including simply the correct quantity of Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco sauce. Test our recipe right here

8. Again Bacon

traditional canadian food back bacon

Talking of bacon, peameal bacon or again bacon is world-famous. Individuals prefer to name it Canadian bacon, however we name it again bacon. Even Bob and Doug Mackenzie (aka Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas) sang about again bacon for his or her 12 Days of Christmas spoof. 

Not like the streaky, fatty bacon typically seen in the USA, Canadian Bacon is created from pork loin lower, giving it a extra ham-like texture and taste.


  • Pork loin
  • Brine (generally made with water, salt, and sugar)
  • Cornmeal (for peameal bacon)

The origin of Canadian Bacon is tied to Toronto, the place pork loins had been rolled in peameal (floor yellow peas) to protect them within the late nineteenth century. Whereas the peameal has since been changed by cornmeal, the identify, and the custom proceed.

Canadian Bacon is usually brined, smoked, and sliced into round medallions. It’s much less fatty than conventional bacon, making it a more healthy possibility that doesn’t sacrifice taste. It’s a part of our nationwide identification. Even in the event you don’t eat bacon (like me), Canadian Bacon remains to be an enormous a part of Canadian meals identification.

9. Kraft Dinner

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The Barenaked Girls (a well-known Canadian rock band) even sang about one in every of our favorite Canadian meals, Kraft Dinner. Of their tune they talked about placing ketchup on Kraft Dinner. “a Little Dijon ketchup.” Whereas many locations worldwide have macaroni and cheese, solely Canada has KD. We Canadians love Kraft Dinner. When Covid-19 unfold, folks had been shopping for up these containers of goodness virtually as shortly as rest room paper!

10. Tim Hortons Doughnuts

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I do know everybody loves doughnuts, and we’ve tried them worldwide, however nothing compares to Tim Horton’s doughnuts. (Donuts for our American buddies.) In reality, consuming at Tim Hortons could be a Canadian meals and cultural identification submit all to itself. Individuals are hooked on Tim Horton’s espresso. Lots of people order a double-double (double cream / double sugar) with an apple fritter or chocolate-dipped doughnut.

Tim Hortons has branched out and now gives oat milk, lattes, and cappuccinos. As Starbucks continues to shut across the nation, Tim Hortons remains to be going robust.

11. Smoked Salmon

traditional canadian food smoked salmon

Our airports are stuffed with containers of the stuff, and we love the smoked sockeye salmon. Eat smoked salmon alone, or add some capers and goat’s cheese on some crackers. Oh, my mouth is watering as I write about it.

12. East Coast Lobster

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Different nations eat lobster, I do know, however within the Maritime Provinces on Canada’s East Coast, Lobster is a lifestyle.  And the lobster from the East Coast of Canada is among the many greatest on this planet. Try Greatest Issues to Do in Nova Scotia – The Final Journey Information

13. Canadian Beer

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It’s a meal the place we come from! Canadians suppose their beer is superior to their southern neighbour’s watery brew. As a matter of truth, we expect that their beer is superior to everybody’s. Canadians can’t determine why the remainder of the world doesn’t really feel the identical means. Whereas many individuals suppose we solely drink Molson Canadian or Labbatt’s, we have now a really massive microbrew scene. You’ll be able to drink beer from throughout Canada in small batches nationwide.

Regional Favourites – Conventional Canadian Delicacies

14. Montreal Bagels

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Montreal bagels are as common in Canada as New York Bagels are in America. What makes these bagels so particular? Not like different bagels, Montreal Bagals have a bigger gap, however the bagel itself is thinner, denser, and sweeter than common bagels. As a result of they’re baked in wooden hearth ovens, the surface is crispier, too! Try 29 Greatest Issues to Do in Montreal, Canada

15. Montreal Smoked Meat Sandwich

Canadian dishes Schwartz's, Famous Montreal smoked meat restaurant

Talking of Montreal, Montreal Smoked Meat is one other quintessential Canadian meals. It’s a proper of passage to go to Schwartz’s Deli. They’ve been serving their well-known unique smoked meat for almost a century. A beef brisket is marinated for ten days utilizing a secret mix of herbs and spices. This place sees lineups out the door. So head on in and order a smoked meat sandwich on rye bread. Try: The place to Keep in Montreal – A Information To The Greatest Locations and Neighborhoods

16. Saskatoon Berry Pie

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Saskatoon Berry Pie is a basic Canadian dessert, significantly cherished within the Prairie provinces. It’s made with Saskatoon berries, a fruit native to North America, recognized for his or her candy, nutty taste, paying homage to blueberries and almonds.


  • Saskatoon berries
  • Sugar
  • Lemon juice
  • Flour or cornstarch (as a thickener)
  • Unbaked pie crusts
  • Butter
  • Cinnamon (non-obligatory)

Saskatoon Berry Pie has a deep cultural significance in Canadian prairies. Harvesting these berries is usually a household exercise, and the pie itself is a frequent function at group gatherings and household occasions. Its preparation and pleasure are interwoven with a way of native delight and custom.

The pie showcases the Saskatoon berry, a staple within the weight loss plan of Indigenous peoples and early settlers. These berries present a novel style and are full of vitamins. Learn extra: 23 Greatest Issues to Do in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

17. Sugar Pie

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Sugar Pie, a pleasant dessert originating from Quebec, is a testomony to Canada’s French heritage. This candy pie is easy but indulgent, primarily made with brown sugar or maple syrup, making a wealthy, caramel-like filling encased in a flaky, buttery crust.


  • Brown sugar or maple syrup
  • Unbaked pie crust
  • Heavy cream or condensed milk
  • Butter
  • Flour
  • Vanilla extract

Sugar Pie’s historical past dates again to when early settlers used native substances to create desserts. At the moment, it’s a staple in Canadian celebrations, significantly throughout the holidays.

18. Nova Scotia Lobster Rolls

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Nova Scotia Lobster Rolls are a quintessential Canadian deal with, particularly common within the Maritime provinces. These rolls mix recent, succulent lobster meat with a light-weight dressing in a toasted bun. Learn extra: Greatest Issues to do in Nova Scotia


  • Contemporary lobster meat
  • Mayonnaise
  • Lemon juice
  • Contemporary dill or chives
  • Buttered and toasted sizzling canine buns

Lobster fishing is a major a part of Nova Scotia’s economic system, making these lobster rolls not only a culinary delight however a cultural expertise.

19. Halifax Donair

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Halifax Donair, a variation of the standard doner kebab, is a beloved road meals in Halifax. It options spiced floor meat, sometimes beef, roasted on a vertical spit and served in a pita with onions, tomatoes, and a signature candy garlic sauce.


  • Floor beef
  • Pita bread
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Vinegar

This dish displays the cultural range of Canada, showcasing how world cuisines have been embraced and tailored.

21. Cut up Pea Soup – A Comforting Canadian Traditional

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French Canadian Meals – Pea Soup

I ate loads of pea soup as a child. I didn’t notice this was a “Canadian foodie factor” till researching this text. Maybe my French Canadian background influenced my household to eat loads of cut up pea soup. However apparently, Cut up Pea Soup is a Canadian dish from French Canada. There you go. I simply realized one thing about my nation that I had by no means recognized till right this moment!

Cut up Pea Soup is a hearty and nourishing staple in Canadian delicacies, significantly cherished throughout the chilly winter months. This conventional soup is created from dried cut up peas and sometimes contains ham or bacon for added taste, together with greens like carrots, onions, and celery.


  • Dried cut up peas (inexperienced or yellow)
  • Ham bone or ham hock (or bacon)
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • Celery
  • Herbs (akin to thyme and bay leaves)
  • Salt and pepper

Tracing its roots again to Canadian fur buying and selling days, Cut up Pea Soup was a sensible alternative for lengthy, harsh winters, because the substances had been simply saved, and the soup supplied much-needed heat and vitamin.

The soup is thought for its thick, creamy texture and comforting, savory taste. It’s a typical home made meal, typically ready in massive batches to take pleasure in over a number of days because the flavors proceed to develop and improve with time.


traditional canadian foods banncok

Bannock is an easy and versatile bread deeply rooted in Canada’s Indigenous culinary traditions. This flatbread, which might be baked or fried, is created from a primary dough of flour, baking powder, water, and typically lard or oil.


  • Flour
  • Baking powder
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Non-obligatory: Lard or vegetable oil

Bannock’s historical past in Canada dates again to the Indigenous peoples, who tailored it from Scottish fur merchants’ bread recipes. It has since turn out to be a staple in lots of Indigenous communities throughout Canada, every area including its personal variations and strategies.

The bread is loved in varied varieties – as a facet for soups and stews, sweetened with jam or honey, and even used as the bottom for sandwiches. Its simplicity and ease of preparation make it a beloved meals amongst Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians.

Bannock has seen a resurgence in modern Canadian delicacies, with cooks and bakers exploring its potential in conventional and fashionable dishes. It’s a testomony to the enduring nature of this meals and its significance within the tapestry of Canadian meals tradition.

Canadian Junk Meals Scene

We’ve got our personal Canadian junk meals scene and individuals are typically shocked to search out that we have now a number of completely different sweet bars (chocolate bars right here in Canada) and potato chips than our American neighbors. That will help you navigate the Canadian junk meals scene while you go to, listed below are a number of of our favourites.

22. Ketchup Chips

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We love our potato chips. Lays is a well-liked model for Ketchup chip lovers. Ruffles is our favourite ridged chip model right here in Canada. Whereas I don’t love Ketchup Chips and lean extra in direction of salt and vinegar chips, I found that Ketchup Chips are a Canadian factor.

I imagine we pioneered the development of flavoring our chips right here in Canada. I’m in all probability mistaken, however I’m going to go along with it. We actually do take all of it to a complete new stage from different nations. All-dressed chips or dill pickle chips, anybody? I keep in mind as soon as upon a time having a tough time discovering salt and vinegar chips whereas touring. We do love having selection right here in Canada.

23. Smarties

While you eat your Smarties do you eat the purple ones final? Smarties are much like M&Ms, solely higher. Hey I’m Canadian, I’ve to love Smarties extra; it’s my job! Made by Nestle, Smarties are somewhat crunchier with a thicker shell.

24. Caramilk

Canada has loads of completely different chocolate bars that you just can’t purchase in the USA. From The Crunchie Bar to the Espresso Crisp however I believe the Caramilk bar is the most well-liked. Nonetheless, I do love a espresso crisp. Caramilk is a chocolate bar stuffed with creamy caramel. It’s produced in Toronto and once I want a chocolate repair, I get myself a Caramilk.

25. Chocolate Bars

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In Canada, we name them chocolate bars, not sweet bars. And I really like different chocolate bars which might be solely Canadian Huge Turk – a sweet twist on Turkish delight. Dave hates it, I adore it! Aerobar – a chocolate bar with bubbles. I discover it somewhat too mild. Mr. Huge, it’s massive, and I don’t prefer it, however once I was a child, I at all times requested for it as a result of it’s the most important chocolate bar on the market. And eventually Wunderbar. That is Dave’s private favorite. While you come to Canada, do your self a favour, go right into a nook retailer and take a look at the chocolate bar choice.

Greatest Canadian Meals – FAQs

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What are conventional Canadian meals?

Conventional Canadian meals are a mosaic of dishes influenced by the nation’s various heritage, together with indigenous, French, British, and more moderen world influences. Staples like Poutine, a hearty dish of fries topped with cheese curds and gravy, and Tourtiere, a savory meat pie from Quebec, is quintessentially Canadian. Bannock, an indigenous flatbread, and Butter Tarts, a candy pastry stuffed with butter, sugar, and egg filling, showcase Canada’s culinary heritage. These conventional meals provide a glimpse into Canada’s wealthy historical past and cultural range.

  1. Poutine: Originating from Quebec, this dish of fries, cheese curds, and gravy has turn out to be a nationwide favourite.
  2. Butter Tarts: A candy deal with that includes a flaky pastry shell stuffed with a buttery, sugary filling.
  3. Maple Syrup: Canada, significantly Quebec, is the world’s largest producer of maple syrup, a staple in Canadian kitchens.
  4. Saskatoon Berry Pie: A pleasant pie created from the native Saskatoon berries, discovered predominantly within the Prairie provinces.
  5. Caesar Cocktail: A novel Canadian twist on the Bloody Mary, that includes clamato juice and sometimes loved as a brunch cocktail.

What do Canadians eat at dwelling?

At dwelling, Canadians take pleasure in quite a lot of meals, reflecting the nation’s multicultural make-up. Consolation meals like macaroni and cheese, roast dinners, and home made soups are frequent for fast meals. Worldwide cuisines like Italian pasta dishes, Chinese language stir-fries, and Indian curries are additionally common, showcasing Canada’s various inhabitants. The main target is usually on seasonal, regionally sourced substances, with a rising emphasis on wholesome, sustainable consuming. We cook dinner loads of Thai meals in our home as properly. Nonetheless, my brother’s household is a giant meat and potatoes sort of family. In Canada, something goes with regards to meals.

What are the completely different meals cultures in Canada?

Canada’s meals tradition is as diversified as its panorama, encompassing French-Canadian, British, American, Asian and Center Japanese pulse First Nations influences. Every area has its specialties – from the seafood of the Maritimes, the poutine of Quebec, to the wheat-based dishes of the Prairies. City facilities like Toronto, Vancouver, and Montreal provide a wealthy tapestry of worldwide cuisines, reflecting the various communities that decision Canada dwelling.

What are Canada’s most well-known meals?

Canada is known for a number of meals which have turn out to be symbols of its culinary identification:

  • Poutine: A beloved dish nationwide, originating from Quebec.
  • Maple Syrup: Emblematic of Canadian delicacies and utilized in varied dishes.
  • Peameal or Again Bacon: Generally known as Canadian bacon outdoors the nation, it is a Toronto specialty.
  • Butter Tarts: A basic Canadian dessert, easy but pleasant.
  • Ice Wine: An opulent dessert wine created from grapes frozen on the vine, primarily produced in Ontario.

And there you might have our distinctive meals to Canada.

Canada is a land made up of immigrants, and settlers of this nation make it a real melting pot of cultures and delicacies.  Similar to our nationwide identification, Canadian meals can be a mix of the most effective of each land on the planet.

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