Russia and Ukraine may share the same border, but they don’t share the same cuisine. Russia and Ukraine’s history are interwoven as both nations share cultural and social commonalities. For example, in Russian and Ukrainian households, all guests are offered food and drink to express hospitality and well-being. Furthermore, Russian and Ukrainian culture places emphasis on creating specialty dishes for holidays like Christmas and Easter.

However, Ukraine and Russia are unique, and many of the differences can be found in their food. The following article will discuss a few of the distinctions between Russian and Ukrainian cuisine.

Russian Cuisine

Being the largest country in the world, Russia boasts a diverse cuisine. Russian cuisine is largely centered around bread, as a number of grains grow throughout the nation, including wheat, barley and rye. Bread is a staple in most Russian households, and a basket of bread is almost always found on the kitchen table.

Seafood is also highlighted in Russian cuisine. The coast offers a wide variety of meats, including herring, cod, and pollock. Additionally, various types of salmon are caught off the coast of Russia. During the preparation of these proteins, Russian cooks will prepare these dishes using products like vegetable oil.

Ukrainian Cuisine

As previously mentioned, Ukraine and Russia share many culinary traditions; for example, bread is offered and immediately available in Ukrainian households. One of the biggest differences in Ukrainian cuisine is the preparation process and their use of animal fats. Ukrainian cooks will often add lard to accentuate the flavour of their meals. Furthermore, Ukrainian cuisine is centered around specific proteins, including duck, goose, and pig, whereas Russian cooks will primarily use poultry and fish.


Bortsch is one of Ukraine’s signature dishes. Borscht is a traditional sour soup, and it is known for its distinct red colour, which occurs due to the beetroot found in the broth. Bortsch gives us greater insight into the differences between Russian and Ukrainian cuisine. It’s standard for Ukrainian cooks to use pork in their Borscht and top it off with sour cream, whereas Russian cooks are more likely to use beef. Furthermore, Ukrainians will offer buns with their bortsch, and Russians will offer a native bread known as “black bread.”

The ingredients and preparation methods used for Russian and Ukrainian dishes are diverse, despite their geographic proximity. Hundreds of years of harvesting produce and farming livestock have turned Ukraine into an eating destination for worldwide travellers.

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