Iranian food is a highlight of travelling in the country, with considerable variety on offer. While you may often eat cheap meals on the run, remember that for many Iranians, eating is a social event in which food is only half the story. If you take time over the meal, to savour both the tastes on offer and the company you're sharing it with, you're halfway towards becoming a local.

The Basics

Iran is an excellent place to eat out (or in, if you're lucky enough to be invited to a meal in a local family home).

Teahouses Traditionally where Iranians would go to socialise and eat, with tea, qalyan (water pipe) and food.

Kebabis Simple kababis tend to be found around major meydans (squares) and serve, yes, kababs. Eat where the locals eat.

Take-away Fast food is popular and begins (and often ends) with bread-roll ‘sandwiches’.

Restaurants Found across the country; most serve ash-e jo (pearly-barley soup) and salad as standard starters

At home Possibly the best food you'll ever taste.