This is a list of ancient dishes, prepared foods and beverages that have been recorded as originating during ancient history. The span of recorded history is roughly 5,000 years, beginning with Sumerian cuneiform script, the oldest discovered form of coherent writing from the protoliterate period around 3,000 to 2,900 years BCE.[a] 
Ancient history can be defined as occurring from the beginning of recorded human history to:
Although the end date of ancient history is disputed, some Western scholars use the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 AD (the most used), the closure of the Platonic Academy in 529 AD, the death of the emperor Justinian I in 565 AD, the birth of Islam in 610 AD or the rise of Charlemagne as the end of ancient and Classical European history. This list does not contain entries that originated after ancient history.
Archeologists and food historians have recreated some dishes using ancient recipes.
Beginning of recorded history to 476 AD
This section is limited to dishes that originated during the time of ancient history (the beginning of recorded human history) up to the Fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 AD.
- Anfu ham is a dry-cured ham from Anfu, Jiangxi, China that originated from the Qin Dynasty. It is eaten alone and also used as an ingredient to add flavor to various dishes.
- Ashishim – Israeli red lentil pancake dish of Ancient Israelite origin that was commonly eaten by Jews in antiquity.
- Babaofan or Eight Treasure Glutinous Rice was first created for a banquet celebrating King Wu of Zhou's defeat of the last King of the Shang Dynasty King Zhou of Shang in the Battle of Muye (circa 1123 BC).
- Bread – the oldest known bread is from 14,000 years ago in Jordan.
- Fish sauce, see garum
- French toast, earliest reference appears in 1st century Rome
- Garum – Phoenicia, ancient Greece (where it was known as γάρος) and the Roman Empire, known from before Pompeii's destruction in 79 AD.
- Ham – dry-cured ham has been produced since ancient times.
- Hardtack – versions using various grains date back to ancient Rome, and as far back as ancient Egypt.
- Harissa – an Arab staple dish known to go back at least to the original Caliphates, and likely pre-dates Islam on the Arabian Peninsula.
- Lamb Stew – Described in ancient Babylonian tablets from 1700 BC
- Liquamen, see garum
- Lucanica – Roman Italy, mentioned by Cicero, 1st century BC
- Misu karu or Misugaru
- Nettle stew
- Noodles – existent since at least 2,000 BC in Northwest China, the noodle was developed independently in ancient China and ancient Rome, and remained common in both areas "through the centuries".
- Oatcake – known to exist at least from Roman times in Britain.
- Olive, olive oil is at least known from the Eastern Mediterranean in the Bronze Age, c. 3000 BC
- Oxygala – a dairy product in ancient Greece and Rome. It was also consumed by ancient Persians.
- Papadzules – a common dish in Maya cuisine that may be "one of the most ancient traditional dishes of Yucatán, Mexico.
- Placenta cake – a layered cake of pastry, cheese and honey originating in ancient Greece and Rome
- Rice – existed, but was "little-used in the ancient world" outside of Asia.
This section includes dishes, foods and beverages that originated during the time of ancient history from 477 AD to 1500 AD (prior to the Postclassical Era).
- Börek – known from 14th century Persia in a poem by Bushaq-i-Atima, although it may be far older.
- Hummus – first mentioned in a cookbook from Cairo, Egypt from the 13th century.
- Kinilaw - raw fish marinated in citrus juices, vinegar, spices, coconut milk, and tabon-tabon fruit extracts from the Philippines. The Balangay archaeological excavation site in Butuan (dated c. 10th to 13th century AD) has uncovered remains of halved tabon-tabon fruits and fish bones cut in a manner suggesting that they were cubed, thus indicating that the cooking process is at least a thousand years old.
- Kuluban – an ancient Javanese dish of boiled vegetables served in spices, similar to modern-day urap. Mentioned in the Rukam inscription, dated to 829 Saka (907 CE) and originating from the Mataram Kingdom.
- Lalab – a similar vegetable dish called rumwah-rumwah was mentioned in the Panggumulan (Kembang Arum) inscription, dated to 824 Saka (902 AD) and originating from the Mataram Kingdom.
- Rawon – a meat stew, called rarawwan in an ancient Javanese Taji inscription (901 AD).
- Rujak – a spicy fruit dish, called rurujak in an ancient Javanese Taji inscription (901 AD).
- Krupuk – a traditional cracker made from rice flour, called kurupuk in ancient Javanese Taji inscription (901 AD).
- Popcorn – an ancient food used by people of the Inca civilization. The food is still commonly used in both regions.
- Philippine adobo – a dish and cooking process originating during the pre-colonial Philippines.
- Tapuy – rice wine originating from the pre-colonial Philippines.
- Tempeh – high-protein fermented soy product from Indonesia. First known as kadêlê, and mentioned in an old Javanese manuscript Serat Sri Tanjung dating to the 12th to 13th century.
Likely ancient in origin
is typically consumed atop rice.
- Nattō – prepared using fermented soybeans, nattō has been described as likely being an ancient food. Its origins have been described as unknown, and it may have been developed independently in different areas that have the same ingredients, such as Japan, China, and Korea.
- Abgoosht – also referred to as Dizi or Mesopotamian Meat Stew, was a stew originally made up of remnants of leftover vegetables and meats.
Different areas in the world have now spun this dish into numerous different variations – including, Armenia, Iran, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Georgia, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Russia, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary – the dish and its origins, however, come from ancient Mesopotamia and the recipe can be dated as far back as at the very least 400 BC as it was mentioned on Cuneiform Tablets during the Babylonian period. Abgoosht and its variants with localised recipes are the national dishes of a number of countries worldwide.