10 Best Street Foods From Around the World

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu burnished his 'everyman' appeal with a stop at a falafel stand in Israel during a campaign tour in 2009. We rate falafel as one of the world's best street foods. See more pictures of fast food. Uriel Sinai/Getty Images/Getty Images

Street food is the heart and soul of international cuisine. These are the comfort foods we crave at 1 a.m. when the bars are closing and stomachs are rumbling. Though often imitated by restaurants, they taste best when scooped onto a paper plate or wrapped in wax paper and eaten standing up, stains and all.

Street food is also the stuff of national pride. Any attempt to compose a list of the world's best street foods is bound to start a fight. There were so many amazing local delicacies to choose from, some ground rules had to be made:

  • Cover as much of the globe as possible. Asia alone could fill a list of the top 100 street foods, but I've tried to spread the love.
  • Stick to local specialties. Some of the dishes on this list can be found elsewhere on the map, but all of them are light-years better at home.
  • Sorry, America. Hot dogs, hamburgers and french fries are excellent street food, but we're going beyond the U.S. this time.
  • When in doubt, I let my personal taste be the tie-breaker. Call me biased, but I've never met a Mexican street food I didn't love.

Without further ado, let's get to the list, starting with the street food paradise called India.