London is one of the coolest cities in Europe for street food. You can find some of the biggest and most international street food markets, with flavours from all over the world. Given this vast amount of choice, how do you decide which ones to go to? In this article I have listed all the best street food markets in London; their location, types of cuisine, opening hours and everything you might want to know before going there. Read on if you want to discover the best street food in London.
Where to find the best street food in London
Camden Town Market
Camden Town is a personal favourite of mine. We used to live in the area when I studied at UCL and would stop there to buy lunch on my way home at least once a week, especially when we were hungover, which as a student happens more often than not. There is a huge variety of different ethnicities and food stalls. Camden Town is also a very cool area to just walk around, with a very colourful and hipster vibe to it. If after your street food meal you’re looking to get a piercing or tattoo, this is the area to do it! The best part of the market that has the most original food (in my opinion) is on the left just after the bridge, away from the tourist Chinese / Mexican / Indian stalls that are actually all the same. In this little square you will find international delicacies like French duck burgers, Italian piadine, halloumi fries, Peruvian wraps and much more! Camden Market is open every day from 10AM to 6PM, however during the week there are less stalls. There is more choice on weekends but then the market is pretty packed so up to you to decide whether you want more choice and more crowds or less choice but also a less busy market to wander around.
Harriet by Hats Off World has the perfect street food suggestion for the trendy people out there; “Possibly one of the quirkiest, and most creative food markets that mixes the best of London street food with independent pop up clothing shops, free events, and a co-working space. Their mantra is all about helping support local businesses, so it’s full of unique, underground startups that are working their cotton socks off to impress Londoners.
Food stands include ‘Made of Dough’ pizza (which was voted 1st and 2nd best pizza in London – is this even possible?!) to The Other Side Fried (for EPIC fried chicken) and Don Luigi’s famous salt-&-pepper calamari sandwich. It originally launched in 2015 as a temporary pop-up, but it’s been so successful that it’s still going strong today. While it’s been confirmed that it’s here until 2020, it won’t be here forever – so head on down, before it’s too late.”
Borough Market is my second personal favourite, since it used to be right next to my office and I used to go there quite often for lunch. I still pay it a visit every now and then even after quitting my corporate job. Borough Market is also a regular market where you can do your grocery shopping, since there are lots of stalls that sell fresh vegetables, fish or meat. My personal favourite stall (which makes me feel like a real Londoner) is the scotch egg stall. These have been recognised by a lot of my British friends as being the best scotch eggs they’ve ever had, when paired to their sweet potato fries they can be the perfect street food lunch!
Borough Market is open ever day except for Sunday, from 10AM to 5PM, except for Saturdays when it opens earlier at 8AM. It’s a great area to grab food on the go, since you can get a lunch box from Borough Market, and then go to More London Riverside to eat with a view of Tower Bridge (assuming you’re visiting on a day that the London weather allows you to sit outside). This is also one of the most Instagrammable places in London if you’re looking to snap some holiday photos and make your friends jealous!
Southbank Centre Food Market
Looking for cuisine from all over the world? Nienke from The London Tester has just the place for you! “When you’re walking along the Southbank of London, it’s easy to miss this market with around 40 stalls at the back of the Southbank Center. But make sure to make your way over here via the stairs, because at this local food market there is a whole range of tasty world dishes waiting for you to try. The Southbank Center Food Market in London is open every weekend, including Bank holidays, and has an even bigger market at the end of Summer and a Christmas market in Winter.
No matter what your appetite is, at this market you’ll find anything from super fresh juices to specialties from Ethiopia, India, Italy, Poland, Korea, France, Thailand, Greece and of course Great-Britain itself. The stalls, all run by small producers and independent traders, also offer a wide variety of beers, wines and cocktails and delicious coffee, tea and sweet treats.
Opening Hours: 12 PM to 8 PM (Fri), 11 AM to 8 PM (Sat) and 12 PM to 6 PM (Sun)”
Old Spitafields Market
Claudia from My Adventures Across the World shares my passion for one of the coolest street food markets and areas of London. “One of London’s best street food markets is by far Old Spitafields, which is open every day from 10 am. Located in Horner Square, the market is at walking distance from Liverpool Street Train and Tube station, and it can also be reached from Shoreditch, Whitechapel and Aldgate. It isn’t just a food market, let alone a street food market. Lots of upcoming designers and artists use the stalls at the market to sell their latest creations, so Old Spitafrields is an overall excellent place to shop. Yet, it is the street food that attracts a lot of visitors, especially at the weekend.
The choice of food is simply incredible: from Caribbean style, to traditional Taiwanese street food; from Turkish wraps to falafels; from noodles to bagles, tacos and even oysters. It’s a great place to go to awaken taste buds.”
Street Feast, Hawker House
Street Feast is more of a street food stall compound than an actual market. There are a few around London, but my favourite is the one in Canada Water since it’s the biggest and with the most food choices. It’s free entry before 7PM or 3 GBP after that. It is only open on Fridays and Saturdays from 6PM to 12 AM. It’s located inside a huge and abandoned warehouse, which has been converted to host street food stalls. It’s also equipped with a cocktail bar and a number of tables where you can sit and enjoy your food and drinks. There is a really cool vibe, with also pool and beer pong tables for anybody who wishes to play between snacks. My favourite stall here is the Chin Chin Labs nitrogen ice cream one, since on top of yummy ice cream you can also see them make it with nitrogen gas, it’s very fun if you ask me!
Moni from Om Trips Blog has the perfect recommendation for those looking for a market that goes beyond just the street food; “Greenwich Market is open 7 days a week and its location makes it one of the best for me. The romantic proximity to the banks of the Thames River attracts the tourist but the locals as well. If you are fans of good street food, crafts, and natural cosmetics, do not miss Greenwich Market. After climbing and enjoying the view from the top at the Greenwich Park, you can continue with all the amazing things that Greenwich Market has to offer. After the energetic walk, we all deserve to recharge the batteries, right? No matter what you will taste – a vegan muffin, fresh cooked international meal or even ramen burger you will stay satisfied! Besides that, there are plenty of events and as yoga enthusiast I can’t wait to visit the new market studio for yoga which will open on February 25th.”
Street food markets might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of London, however if you’re planning a brief trip here I highly recommend visiting one. If you’re visiting under the Christmas holidays make sure to check out my Christmas in London post, since they add more festive markets around that time of year. Are there other street food markets in London that you love? Let me know in the comments below! If you’re looking for something a little more fancy than street food, read about my experience doing an afternoon tea bus tour in London.