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Where are the best places to try traditional Norwegian food in Oslo?

Frazer Norwell
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Where are the best places to try traditional Norwegian food in Oslo?
Here are some of the best spots to try some traditional Norwegian food in Oslo. Pictured is a seat at a nicely prepared meal at a restaurant. Photo by Jay Wennington on Unsplash

Norway is home to some of the world's best fresh meat, fish and produce. The country's capital is home to several culinary gems which offer some of the best traditional Norwegian dishes available anywhere.


Norwegian cuisine doesn't always get a lot of love on the international stage, and it certainly is nowhere near as revered as, say, Italian, Spanish or French cuisine. 

However, that doesn't mean that it won't leave you wishing for seconds when prepared well, with fresh ingredients and with love and care. 

Norway's capital Oslo is home to some excellent restaurants, several of which help elevate Norwegian food and make it a culinary experience that any foodie would relish. 

Whether you are after reindeer, fresh seafood from the country's coastline, fårikål, lapskaus, kjøtkakker or fish soup, these are our picks to try some traditional Norwegian dishes in Oslo.


Gamle Raadhus Restaurant

Not far from city hall and the Aker Brygge district in Oslo's city centre is the Gamle Raadhus Restaurant, known for putting together exquisite dishes from fresh ingredients from all over Norway. The menu tends to change with the seasons, but you can expect plenty of fish and game all year round. 

This restaurant is in the mid-high range in terms of prices, but there is a three-course set menu available for 755 kroner. 

In the summer it has a charming back garden where people can eat. 

Engebret Café 

The restaurant boasts over 150 years of history, opening its doors in 1857. The menu is very heavy on fish. However, Norwegian game like reindeer also makes an appearance. At lunch, the eatery offers a sandwich and cake menu. The sandwiches themselves are smørbrød (a Norwegian open sandwich), meaning you can still try a classic Norwegian meal if you'd prefer something lighter for lunch. 

The interior of the restaurant itself is very elegant and boasts a lot of history, having seated Norwegian figures such as Henrik Ibsen, Grieg, Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, Knut Hamsun and Edvard Munch. 

Starters cost around 245 kroner, sandwiches about 210 kroner and main courses around 450 kroner. 


This pick is located in the barcode district of Oslo with a changing seasonal menu focused on elevating and offering a modern twist on classic Norwegian ingredients and dishes. 

The menu has both a lunch and dinner menu, and a lot of the dishes are smaller dishes intended for sharing at 925 kroner per person. Another set menu, costing 875 kroner, aims to pay homage to Norwegian farmers and produce. 

This eatery is pricier, even by Norwegian standards, so it may be worth saving for special occasions. 



Serving up northern Norwegian seafood in a relaxed and cosy setting in Majorstua is Lofotstua. It serves a full á la carte menu of fish between May and October. However, the only thing you'll find on the menu between October and January is lutefisk. The restaurant also offers seal and whale meat.

If you visit in July, you may be disappointed as the restaurant closes for the collective holiday period. 


Located in Akerbrygge is Rorbua, which has a menu with a number of Norwegian classics on it. The starters include fish soup and steamed mussels. Meanwhile, the main courses include reindeer or a mixed platter with whale, venison, steak and reindeer. 

A starter costs about 200 kroner, while a main course will cost between 300-450 kroner. The bar at Rorbua also serves aquavit, a strong Norwegian aperitif. 

Honourable mentions

Listing every great restaurant serving Norwegian food in Oslo would be some feat. But, if these restaurants don't take your fancy- we also have other recommendations. 


Dovrehallen is a great place to stop for a quick lunch. It's one of the cheapest options on our list, with main courses costing around 200 kroner for a main course or 130 kroner for a sandwich. It serves a different classic Norwegian dish each day of the week too. 

Both Schøder and Kaffistova also serve Norwegian classics at more affordable prices. Schrøder is also the favourite hangout for detective Harry Hole in Jo Nesbø's popular crime novels.

And for the most special of occasions, Norway has a number of Michelin-starred or recognised restaurants, from the three-starred Maaemo to new entries such as Hot ShopSchlägergården and HydeKontrast and Statholdergaarden also hold Michelin stars. 

The Michelin-starred eateries may not feature many Norwegian classics. Still, all have been praised for their inventive use of local produce and for elevating them to their highest culinary potential.


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