Why do Poles eat hotdogs with no buns and burgers with no buns? Posted by on Jul 4, 2016 in Culture

With the 4th of July festivities and cookouts, this subject came to my mind! I have to admit I never tasted a real “American style” hotdog or burger until I was probably 15….That was when first MacDonald’s opened inWarsaw. After standing in line for 30 minutes (because everyone wanted to try MacDonald’s!), I ordered a cheeseburger with french fries….and hated it! Crazy, but true:). Hotdogs and burgers on the buns may be more popular now in bigger cities in Poland, but I grew up eating hotdogs (parówki) for breakfast or dinner, with no buns! And the only burger I knew was kotlet mielony (fried burger patty served with potatoes and salad for dinner!)

I do enjoy hamburgers/cheeseburgers and hotdogs with french fries once in a while though. But nothing tastes better that fresh, skinny turkey parówki for breakfast:) Boiled, usually served with scrambled eggs with chives and fresh slice of crispy breador fresh roll on the side! Sometimes a little cottage cheese (serek wiejski) or yellow cheese (ser żółty) on the side, as well as a little ketchup (keczup) or mustard (musztarda).


Parówki na śniadanie. Image credit

Now, for the burgers…The only way I ate “burgers” in Poland was in a form of kotlet mielony. It was always a part of dinner plate, just like a piece of steak for example is. Usually served with boiled “young potatoes” (młode ziemniaczki) with fresh dill on the top. Side dish could be mizeria (sliced cucumber with yoghurt or sour cream sauce), buraczki na ciepło (sautéed beets) or any salad (sałatka)! Yummy!!!


Kotlet mielony z ziemniakami i buraczkami. Image credit

So why do Poles don’t really use buns for their burgers and hotdogs? I guess it is just a cultural decision…That’s the way it always was and that’s the way everyone in Poland is used to eating it:)

Any of you tried burgers and hotdogs Polish style? Let us know how you liked it!

Happy Independence Day!!!

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About the Author: Kasia

My name is Kasia Scontsas. I grew near Lublin, Poland and moved to Warsaw to study International Business. I have passion for languages: any languages! Currently I live in New Hampshire. I enjoy skiing, kayaking, biking and paddle boarding. My husband speaks a little Polish, but our daughters are fluent in it! I wanted to make sure that they can communicate with their Polish relatives in our native language. Teaching them Polish since they were born was the best thing I could have given them! I have been writing about learning Polish language and culture for Transparent Language’s Polish Blog since 2010.


  1. Liz:

    My Polish Grandad used to make us burgers which looked just like the ones in the picture. They were yummy! But he called them “klops” which according to Google is Latvian for meatloaf. Have you ever heard this as a Polish word for them before?

    • Ela:

      @Liz I’m not sure about klops, but the diminutive klopsik is definitely used in Poland. Klopsiki are basically meatballs.