Local Bites

A Taste Of Italy: Survival Guide To Italy’s Top Carbs

By Ryan Brown
on  January 22, 2019

While everyone is talking about diets, we want to talk about carbs… because let’s all admit it, carbs are amazing.

It goes without saying that Italian food is king of culinary delights, and a perfectly justifiable reason to visit a country just to eat your way through it.

All along the Sicilian coast and Aeolian islands on our MedSailors Italy route you’ll have the chance to taste the most delicious and carb-tastic Italian dishes, so we’ve created a survival guide to help you with those difficult dining decisions while sailing Italy.

Here’s our top Italian carb nom-nominations!

Margherita Pizza

This one goes without saying, but the Margherita Pizza is probably Italy’s most beloved export, and it’s even better where it all began!

Legend has it that this very pizza was created to represent the unification of Italy and named after Queen Margherita. Donning the colours of the Italian flag: fresh red tomatoes, crisp green basil, and white melty mozzarella — this is a pizza for the ages and a must-have on the carb spectrum.

Quattro Stagioni

Flavour explosion warning! This Italian classic is the perfect pizza to share with a group looking for variety.

The Quattro Stagioni is a pizza made to represent the seasons of the year, with each quarter dressed in different ingredients. Layered atop zesty tomato sauce and mozzarella sits artichoke that represents spring, tomato or basil for summer, mushrooms for autumn, and olives or ham for winter.

Of course, this unique pizza can be swapped around for seasons of just veggies or meats, but trying the classic Italian combinations will be the best!

Pasta Carbonara

Everyone knows your standard spaghetti and meatballs, but one of the most flavourful and classic pasta dishes is Pasta Carbonara.

Combine homemade spaghetti noodles, cured Pancetta or bacon, and a hard Pecorino Romano cheese and toss it in an egg yolk sauce for a really golden dish you won’t forget! A little hint, Pasta Carbonara is the perfect Italian carb dish to save you after a big night out.

Thank us later 😉

Arancini & Suppli

Of these two traditional snacks known from the Italian snack world, the arancini is most well known to foreigners, but both are equally scrumptious.

Both of these yummy snacks are coated with bread crumbs and fried, creating a melt-in-your-mouth morsel. But there are a couple of key differences…

Arancini, associated mostly with Sicilian cuisine, is typically stuffed with rice, cheese, and sometimes ham and peas. The suppli on the other hand is stuffed with cheese, rice, and sauce and is a traditional Roman finger food.

But, in our opinion, you have two hands, so why not try one of each!


Layer upon layer of carb-O-licious delight, our love for lasagne knows no bounds, and yours won’t either after you taste homemade lasagne while sailing Italy!

This mondo pasta dish will fill any craving, with sheets of pasta layered over mouth-watering ingredients of vegetables or mince beef, smothered in sauce and cheese, and baked to a molten golden perfection.

Drooling yet? Thought so. This colossal carb dish is a top choice for any night out.


Don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten about the endless *(and equally glorious)* bread-themed Italian fare in this carb round-up…and there will be no shame in starting every meal with a bruschetta appetizer!

This is THE antipasti dish of carb heaven. Fresh grilled bread rubbed down with garlic and sprinkled with sea salt and olive oil…oooh now we are talking!

We aren’t done there. Usually topped with fresh tomatoes, onions, and basil then drizzled with a sweet and tangy balsamic reduction, it’s a starter that will take you to your happy place.

Chya, we know, this is going on every order…

Focaccia Bread

There is no shame in doubling up bread at dinner, and focaccia makes it hard not to.

Focaccia al rosmarino *(rosemary focaccia)* is a popular Italian flatbread starter or snack that is so fluffy you could sleep on it. Tear into the rosemary infused bread after a splash in local olive oil and balsamic vinegar. It’s okay to ask for seconds.

Our tip: Level up and look out for focaccia bread infused with olives, cheese, and sun-dried tomatoes in different bakeries along our MedSailors Italy route.


Last, but certainly not least, Tiramisu is the end-all-be-all Italian dessert to satisfy any sweet tooth. Tiramisu cake gives the best of both worlds for dessert and coffee lovers alike, and it’s name literally translates to “Cheer me up”.

With the flurry of cacao power gracing the layers of creamy mascarpone cheese and coffee dipped “lady fingers” biscuits, Tiramisu tops our favs for Italian sweets and is a good addiction waiting to happen.

These are just the tip of the Italian drool-worthy carb foods you can discover on your MedSailors Italy sailing holiday, so pack your stretchy pants and get feasting!

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