Best International Supermarkets in the UK
18 June, 2021
4 mins read
Each and every one of us has comfort food, right? As an international student, homesickness can be quite common, but eating food from your home country is definitely a good way to reduce it. So of course, when moving to a new country, you'll want to make sure that you can get your favourite food there. It sure isn't the easiest thing to find your country’s traditional food in another country with a different culture. However, nothing is impossible! This blog will let you in on the best international supermarkets in the UK where you can get your favourite traditional food from.
1. Asian Supermarkets
Located on Lisle Street in London’s Chinatown, this is a two-floor Chinese and Asian supermarket that is as old as Chinatown itself! SeeWoo Supermarket is actually an award-winning store! It sells fresh, canned, frozen, and dried produce from China, Japan, Indonesia, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, and other Asian cuisines as well.
This Japanese shop is located in the energetic streets of Soho, London. It has all the rice products you could ever desire! They sell a wide range of products, including soba, udon, ramen noodles, miso soup, sushi, nori, tofu, dashi, curries, soy sauce, tsukemono, and tea leaves, and of course instant noodles.
Indian Spice Shop is located on Drummond Street, Euston. The shop contains a treasure of South Asian ingredients starting from the well-known to the obscure. You will find an extensive selection of pulses and rice, including red, brown, and black rice, jasmine rice, and sona masuri. You will also find racks of seeds, pastes and purees, powders, dried fruits and roots, powdered cardamom, and mango and coconut milk. This place has whatever you may need to cook an amazing traditional Indian dish.
4. Asiana Express
Located at 54-56 Goose Gate, Nottingham, this supermarket sells products and groceries from all over Asia! They stock Chinese, Japanese, Indian, etc.. They sell all kinds of Chinese and Indian spices at much lower prices than other bigger supermarkets. A hidden gem, huh? You will also find frozen Chinese dim sum and fresh fish.
2. Arabian and Middle Eastern Markets
This one is located in Peckham, London, and it’s known to be one of London’s most peculiar international stores. It offers flavours that will transport you to the Middle East! It serves baba ganoush, dolmeh, ash reshteh, aghil shor harira, baslogh, dried figs amardine, and boiled sweets.
6. Green Valley
Located on Upper Berkeley Street, Marble Arch, this Lebanese food hall has sugar-dusted maamoul (semolina biscuits filled with dates, figs, and nuts) and syrupy towers of baklava to die for! You will find an amazing selection of halawa, kunafa, mushabak (deep-fried batter rings covered in a sweet syrup), and basbousa (a semolina syrup cake) there. The shop also has a bakery and mezze counter which serves kibbeh (balls of ground meat and grain), fresh sambousek (meat pies), tabbouleh, falafel, and even stuffed vine leaves. Herbs and species such as ajwain and za’atar and fresh-baked pittas and flatbreads can be found there as well. Quite the perfect selection, right?
This gem is also located in the heart of Peckham, London. It specializes in fresh produce sourced directly from Africa! You will find West African ingredients and treats readily available here including potato leaf, bitter leaf, dried and smoked fish, okra, attiéké, bush meat, alligator pepper, plantain chips, yams and yam flour, peanut paste, garri, and igbekere.
3. Other Markets
It is one of the best international supermarkets in the UK and the best Latin American market. It is located on a stretch of Hampstead Road, linking central London with Camden. This market greets its customers with a wild mix of colour and music as a celebration of both the Latin American nation’s cuisine and its high-spirited carnival culture. It includes everything you’re looking for from top-shelf mezcal, tequila and raicilla (another agave spirit) to artisan corn tortillas (including the blue corn variety). The supermarket also sells achiote paste (a popular crimson-coloured seasoning), poblano peppers, and preserved nopales (prickly pears).
9. German Deli
I think the name pretty much says it, huh? You will find the German Deli in Borough Market, which is one of the biggest and oldest markets in London that even has one particular on-site market that dates back to the 12th century! This amazing German supermarket sells pretty much everything you can imagine from German sausages, meat, and ham to condiments, sweets, chocolate, and bread. You will also find a variety of ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, currywurst, and numerous other cooking sauces you can’t even count!
This is a popular Italian deli located in Kentish Town that sells fresh Italian produce. It's owned and managed by Sicilian brothers Antonio and Stefano who brought the family business from Agrigento to the UK in 1981. You will find that the supermarket is stacked from floor to ceiling with an extensive range of Italian products including olive oil, dried pasta, packets of biscotti and grissini breadsticks, capers, gnocchi, sauces, soft drinks, coffee, and ice cream. They also sell fresh pasta with spindly shapes, specialist deli items such as cheese and meats, pastries, bread such as focaccia and ciabatta, and cream-filled cannoli pastries — all handmade there.
Located in Bayswater, the Kalinka Russian Shop is the oldest surviving Russian shop in London. You won't face any hassle when looking for Russian products because this shop has it all! It serves specialty Eastern European food items such as meat, rye bread, pasties, pies, canned goods, drinks, dairy, and a large variety of dumplings and stuffed cabbage.
12. Pak Foods
Located at 77-83 Chesterfield Road, Evington, Leicestershire, this international supermarket offers a vast selection of Ethnic food from around the world, including India, Pakistan, and many more! They sell fresh halal meat, fish, rice, Atta (Chapati) flour, fresh herbs, vegetables, as well as household goods. Whatever it is you’re looking for, you will definitely find it there!
This concludes our list of the best international supermarkets in the UK. Head out to the nearest market to your UK student accommodation now. While you are it, tell us where are you from and which market seems the best to you?