Most of us don’t plan our menus alphabetically, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t curious. It could be a party, a trivia challenge, or just a whim that makes you start wondering about foods that start with K.
No matter what brought you here, we have all the information you could possibly want. The letter K is one of the more commonly found in foods.
There are main dishes, sides, healthy dishes, drinks, and desserts. Keep reading to discover all the delicious delights you can make or buy that start with the letter K.
Foods that Start with K
One of the first things you should know about foods that start with K is that they come in many variations. The options are international in flavor, too.
You will likely recognize a lot of the options below. However, there are several more that are less familiar. Whether you’ve heard of them before or not, the following ideas will give you something to think about the next time you have a menu to plan.
Main Dishes that Start with K
Main dishes are, quite simply, the star of the show. They are the biggest portion on your plate, and if you’re not a vegetarian or vegan, they likely contain meat of some sort.
For pescatarians, this might be fish. For the more carnivorous, it could be pork, beef, or chicken. But no matter which category they fall into, all these options are delicious.
According to Comfortable Food, the name kielbasa comes from the Polish word for sausage. It was originally made with pork, marjoram, pepper, salt, and garlic. In 1964, the recipe was changed to contain 80% pork and 20% beef.
In US grocery stores, brands like Hillshire Farms put out varieties that are all pork, all beef, turkey, or a combination of the above.
Kebobs are a fabulous summer option and come in wide varieties. They could be heavy on the meat or have none, according to your tastes and those of the people eating with you.
If you’re looking for a delightful option, try this Lemons for Lulu recipe that combines pork, sausage, and veggies served with a side of tangy balsamic barbecue sauce.
3. King Crab
The king crab is a giant species of crab found predominantly in cold waters off the coast of Alaska. The red king crab can grow as large as 11 inches across, with a leg span of up to 6 feet. Blue crab is rarer but larger and can weigh up to 18 pounds when full-grown.
According to Fishex, over 100 boats participate in the harvesting of red crab, gathering over a million pounds of crab in two to three months.
Though royal blue while alive, the shell of the Blue King Crab turns a bright reddish-orange when cooked. Interestingly, it is often marketed in the US as Red King Crab.
Golden King Crab is turning up more often than it did in the past. However, while it is the smallest of the species available in Alaskan waters, it is more abundant than the red or blue king crab.
4. Kung Pao Chicken
If you’ve ever eaten takeout from a fast food Chinese restaurant, you’ve likely at least seen this menu item if not ordered it yourself. It consists of stir-fried chicken, peanuts, and vegetables and is typically served over rice.
According to Once Upon a Chef, the version you get when you go out to eat likely has less common ingredients: Sichuan peppercorns, Chinese Black vinegar, Chinese Rice Wine, and dried red chilis.
But the site has a recipe for a version made from ingredients that are easier to obtain in most locations.
Kedgeree is one of the international offerings on this list. According to Spruce Eats, this dish originated in India but has since become a common and popular British recipe.
It’s a hearty dish made from smoked haddock, curry, cardamom, and parsley. The entrée can be eaten hot or cold. Since the dish includes hard-boiled eggs, it is often eaten for breakfast.
Sides that Start with K
You don’t have to just use foods that start with K as the main dish, though. There are plenty of side dishes that fall into this category as well. The options below are both American and international in nature.
Kimchi is another international option, though if you live somewhere in Koreatown, you may have tried it in local restaurants. My Korean Kitchen explains that this traditional dish is made from fermented cabbage, radish, or cucumber.
The most common variety that is eaten daily by most Koreans is baechu kimchi. The side is made with cabbage, kkakdugi, radish, oi kimchi, as well as cucumber.
Another cultural selection, this one heralds from India. NZ Herald has a recipe for this simple vegetable salad that’s often used with curries and meat dishes. It combines cucumbers, tomatoes, chilis, onions, mint, coriander, and lime juice.
8. Kidney Beans
Kidney beans are one of a variety of common beans. They get their name from their resemblance to a human kidney. There are dozens of ways to use these besides just eating them plain.
If you’re looking for something unique, Lively Table has a zesty, Healthy Three Bean Quinoa Salad with kidney beans, chickpeas, and edamame.
Knishes are typically considered snack food and are often sold by street vendors. You can also use them as side dishes, appetizers, or brunch dishes.
Serious Eats has a recipe for a version using scallions instead of sauteed onions. The filling and the dough can be made up to three days ahead of time.
Healthy Foods that Start with the Letter K
Fortunately, there are a bunch of healthy options when it comes to foods that start with the letter K, too. Many fruits and vegetables fall into this category. Below are some delightful options for you to choose from.
Kale is a super popular vegetable, and there are endless ways to use it. If you’re looking for a salad that eats like a meal, try this recipe from Lively Table. It combines kale with chicken, sweet potatoes, black beans, and avocado.
11. Kiwi Fruit
Kiwi fruit is another delicious food that starts with K. The fruit is native to the mountains and hills of Southwest China, where they were known as Chinese gooseberries.
Once the fruit was relocated to New Zealand, it became known as Kiwi fruit. There are many delightful ways to use them, including this pineapple kiwi green smoothie bowl from Lively Table.
These tiny little fruits are gems in disguise. Only a bit larger than a grape, this citrus fruit has an edible peel. They’re low in calories and high in vitamins.
Five kumquats are only 71 calories. However, they have 6.5 grams of fiber and 73% of your recommended daily vitamin C intake. They also contain vitamin A, manganese, and calcium.
Kohlrabi is a type of turnip. According to Bon Appetit, the bulb is eaten most often, but the leaves are also edible. The vegetable has a thick green or purple skin, and the meat inside is off-white. They can be eaten raw or cooked.
14. Kabocha Squash
Kabocha squash is essentially a Japanese pumpkin. In Japan, this healthy vegetable is often used in Dashi stock or fried and then used in tempura vegetable dishes. In Korea, though, it’s used in porridge or salad.
Moreover, you can roast it or use it in pasta sauces. And the best part is that the skin is entirely edible, meaning you don’t need to peel this squash before using it.
Condiments and Spices that Start with the Letter K
Let’s not forget the world of condiments and spices when it comes to foods that start with K. Of course, this will serve to complement your dishes rather than stand in for them, but we’ve got some creative ways to use these to your best advantage at lunch and dinner.
Ketchup is a staple in American households. According to National Geographic, 97% of American homes have a bottle in the fridge or on their tables. However, it wasn’t an American invention.
The condiment is believed to have been created in China and reinvented by the British. Interestingly, neither of the original versions contained tomatoes. The current version is mostly a commercial endeavor, though recipes still exist to make it yourself.
Or you can kick up the storebought version with some cayenne pepper. Doing so creates one of the two sauces accompanying Baked Chicken Strips with Spicy Ketchup and Chive and Onion Dip from Nutrition in the Kitch.
16. Kecap Manis
Kecap Manis is another versatile sauce. While this is a sweet soy sauce from Indonesia, you can actually buy it from specialty shops or specialty sections of your grocery store.
In fact, you can make it yourself if you don’t have either available. All you need is traditional soy sauce and brown sugar. Palm sugar works even better if you can get your hands on it.
Desserts that Start with K
No list would be complete without desserts. In fact, when it comes to foods that start with K, there are many options in this category.
While some are prepackaged delights, others are homemade. In addition, they come in variations ranging from American to French to Filipino.
17. Key Lime Pie
The flavor of key lime pie is a perfect summer treat, coupling a graham cracker crust with a lime curd filling. And with this lovely recipe from Nutrition in the Kitch, you can make a vegan version that is humane and healthy.
But it is made with cashews, so those with nut allergies will want to steer clear.
18. Kettle Corn
Kettle corn combines the sweetness of caramel corn with the saltiness of regular popcorn in what is known as a state or county fair treat. But you don’t have to wait for the fair to enjoy it. You can make it at home with just some popcorn kernels, vegetable oil, salt, and sugar.
19. Klondike Bars
Klondike is a brand, and while the company made a name for itself with its chocolate-covered, square-shaped vanilla ice cream bars, they have developed so many other options since then. All options from Klondike are under the brand’s banner, making them all foods that start with K. Newer options include Krunch bars, shakes, cones, ice cream sandwiches, and Choco Tacos.
20. Kentucky Jam Cake
According to Southern Living, this cake is a bit of a misnomer. While it is popular in Kentucky and most natives claim it originates there, it was actually brought there by German immigrants who moved from Pennsylvania.
The sweet is a spice cake with jam filling, typically blackberry or blueberry, and frosted with a caramel cream cheese frosting.
The kuoign-amann is a carmelized croissant, described by Eater as something of a cousin to the cronut. The French pastry was created by the same baker and SoHo bakery as the cronut, a donut-croissant hybrid that the city lost its collective mind over in 2013.
Pronounced kween-ah-mon, it literally translates to “butter cake.” The name is Breton, and the recipe was brought to France by Celtic migrants.
Kalamay is a sticky sweet dessert or snack popular in the Philippines. Made from rice flour, coconut milk, and sugar, this treat is similar in flavor to Japanese mochi. Also, it can have flavors like peanut butter or vanilla.
The dessert is also sometimes filled with purple yams or adzuki beans.
Drinks that Start with the Letter K
Maybe you’re looking for a drink instead of a heavy dessert to end your meal. Good news. There are a few options here that start with K, too. Liqueurs are popular ways to end a meal, but probiotics can also be an excellent digestif.
Kombucha is a fizzy drink made from tea with a sweet and sour taste. Not only has this drink become quite trendy, but it is also believed to cure ailments ranging from hair loss and cancer to AIDS.
However, WebMD cautions that this information may be largely anecdotal. The drink does have health benefits, though, including working as a probiotic and delivering a healthy dose of Vitamin B.
Kirsch is also known as kirschwasser (pronounced vasser), according to BBC Good Food. The drink is produced mostly in Germany and Switzerland but also in the Alsace region of France.
Kirschwasser means “cherry water,” and it’s an eau de vie, or brandy. It is double distilled with sour morello cherry and clear in color. This beverage has a high alcohol content and can be used in baking or cooking, or you can drink it straight.
Kahlua is a coffee liqueur made from 100% Arabica coffee beans and rum. Besides being featured in drinks like White Russians, Black Russians, and Mudslides, you can use Kahlua in dozens of cooking and baking recipes.
What food brands start with the letter K?
After Klondike, the most common, of course, is Kellogg. The brand is responsible for creating many products currently on the market, most notably cereals.
But Krusteaz is another famous brand known for its baked goods mixes that require the addition of only water. In addition, the Keebler company is known for its cookies.
What fast food restaurants start with K?
Kentucky Fried Chicken and Krispy Kreme are probably the most well-known. Several other regional variations exist in the US, including Kelly’s Roast Beef, Kew Pee, and Krystal.
What is a party food that starts with K?
Some of the items listed above are party foods. The most common of these include knishes, kettle corn, and dishes featuring ketchup, kielbasa, and king crab.
It seems most nations have foods that start with K. The selections range from drinks to main dishes and desserts to sides. Some are healthy, and some are less so.
Many brands that start with the letter K also produce food products. Some of the most common names on your kitchen shelves and in your pantry, fridge, and freezer are from K brands.