Switzerland is a country that has been known for its chocolate, cheese, and watches. There are many famous things you can buy in Switzerland from the classic Swiss Army Knife to cowbells.
When you’re a tourist in Switzerland, you’re probably looking for some Swiss food to try. Maybe you have your own self-catering accommodation and would like to sample local Swiss food. Alternatively, you might prefer to buy souvenirs at the local supermarket rather than browsing through traditional souvenir shops. It might also be fun to buy some of the staples that you won’t normally find at home.
Switzerland’s supermarkets may surprise you. Although the supermarkets might not be as large as what you can find in other countries, they still have so many delicious food and options to choose from. The key is knowing which one to pick.
In case you were wondering what should I buy at a Swiss supermarket for whatever reason, we have created a list for you. If you’re visiting Switzerland for a vacation you’ll want to know some basic information before heading out on your shopping spree.
Read below to find out more about what to buy in Switzerland’s supermarkets!
Switzerland has some of the best chocolate in all of Europe. The Swiss chocolate industry is filled with talented chocolatiers. And the Swiss are known for their love and appreciation for sweet treats, which you can definitely taste here with many chocolate shops dotting every corner.
Switzerland’s supermarkets also offer a wide variety of chocolate sources. From Lindt to Toblerone, Ragusa, Caillier, and Villars, there are so many choices for you. Also worth checking out is a new brand called Halba. They sell their chocolates at Coop.
Milk chocolate is a safe choice for most people, and that is always a great choice. There are also those who prefer something less sweet, such as dark chocolate. Lately, there have been many varieties containing salted caramel or fruits such as berries and oranges.
Visit one of the Swiss Supermarkets and choose what you want. You’ll want to try them out while traveling through this beautiful country. Your taste buds thank you.
Do you love cheese? Switzerland is like heaven for cheese lovers, with its excellent quality and wide variety.
I especially recommend Appenzeller Cheese and Le Gruyère Cheese. The Le Gruyère cheese from the same-named village is a family favorite. However, some people prefer milder varieties such as Emmental Cheese.
We have an article about the pretty village ofGruyères, where theLe Gruyère cheese originates. If you’d like to learn more about it, you can check out this article: Gruyères, Switzerland: A Romantic Little Town.
If you are a cheese lover, Switzerland is the place to be. You can pick up cheese in any local supermarket or from local cheese shops. Switzerland is home to some of the best and tastiest cheeses in Europe.
Forget melted cheese on top of a pizza, you can have it in the form of fondue. Switzerland is renowned for its delicious cheese and they are often used in traditional dishes. One such dish is Fondue Cheese. It’s nutritious, filling and just plain delicious.
Fondue is a traditional Swiss dish that has been around since the early 1900s. It is made of cheese, wine, and bread. There are many different types of fondues you can make with all sorts of cheeses mixed in. Our favorite type is the Moitié–Moitié, which essentially means half-and-half. It’s a mixture of Gruyère AOP cheese and Vacherin Fribourgeois AOP cheese – both equally delicious.
The Swiss tradition of eating fondue starts with a pot of boiling water being placed on the dinner table, along with different types of bread to dip into the hot liquid. There are many variations but typically there would be one or two pots for a group so that people can share what they’re dipping their food into. The food is cooked by stirring it into the cheese pot yourself.
You can buy boxes of cheese fondue from Swiss Supermarkets. Our favorite buy is the box of GerberMoitié-Moitié.
Spätzli is a traditional Swiss dish that is made with flour, milk, and eggs. They are often served as an accompaniment to meat dishes like Sausage Meat (like Brätkügeli) or Beef Ragout (Geschnetzeltes).
Spätzli is a traditional dish from Switzerland, and it’s one of the most popular dishes there. It has been around since at least the 13th century and isn’t just served as a side to meat. Spätzli can be eaten by themselves for breakfast or dinner, but their creaminess makes them perfect for soups like Onion Soup or Cream of Mushroom Soup.
Packs of Spätzli can be bought from most Swiss supermarkets. Each pack typically has a shelf life of a couple of days to a week after buying.
Chestnuts in Caramel sauce
Chestnuts are popular during autumn and winter in Switzerland. Alone, they are often roasted over an open fire and peeled off after they cooled down. As a sweet treat, they are also mixed with caramel sauce.
Now, you can also buy caramelized chestnuts ready-made in stores. They often come during autumn when wild season is in full swing.
Nut Pastry (Bündner Nusstorte)
There are many types of pastries in Switzerland. One pastry that is very popular with tourists is the Nut Pastry, which can be found at bakeries and coffee shops all over the country. The nut pastry (Bündner Nusstorte in German) is a traditional sweet available in Graubünden with caramelized nuts mixed into the dough
Most of the bakers use flour, sugar, egg, butter, and a bit of salt together with the nuts. The cake is sweet but not overly so. You will love it with coffee, tea, or whatever drink you prefer. You can buy it anywhere in Switzerland as it is widely available in big supermarkets like Coop and Migros. It is also widely available in Graubünden bakeries.
One popular dish is the Swiss potato pancake called Rösti which has been around since the 19th century. Rösti is made from shredded potatoes mixed with cooked onions and salt, then fried until it becomes crispy on the outside but soft on the inside. The Swiss enjoy eating Rösti at breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
You can easily buy Rösti from various Swiss supermarkets like Coop, Migros, Denner, and Volg. We normally get a brand called Hero. It is easy to cook and can be stored for a couple of weeks in the cupboard. You can cook it with cheese on top or with bacon and onions.
When will you try it you will get what makes it so special and why everyone should try it at least once in their life.
Müesli and Birchermüesli – Cereals
Birchermüesli is very popular in Switzerland. You’ll probably notice it at the breakfast buffet if you’re staying at a hotel. These cereals are very popular in Switzerland; they can even be found at most major supermarkets there.
Müesli is made by mixing oats with fruit or nuts or both. It was invented by Swiss physician Maximilian Oskar Bircher-Benner for patients who had difficulty chewing solid food. He wanted to create a breakfast food that would give them enough nutrients. One of the most popular brands of Birchermüesli is Emmi.
Alternatively, you can pick up a pack of dried Müesli in the cereal section of the supermarket if you prefer. Then, you can mix it yourself with yogurt or milk, whichever you prefer.
These are some delicious food items of Switzerland that you can buy in various Swiss supermarkets. We hope that you can try one, some, or all of them during your stay in the country. And take it home with you, if you end up liking it.
If you would like to check out other souvenirs (both food and non-food alike), we have another article for that: Famous Things To Buy In Switzerland.
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Darla Uhl is the owner of TouringSwitzerland.com. Her home is in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. Having lived almost 20 years in Switzerland, she's traveled extensively all over the country.
Darla's favorite regions to visit in Switzerland include Engadin, Lake Geneva, Bernese Oberland, Ticino, and Valais. She loves spending time with her family, hiking, visiting museums, and reading books.