Colombian Food: 28 Traditional Dishes to strive in Colombia or at dwelling


Latin America is known for its scrumptious meals, and Colombia doesn’t disappoint. In truth, sampling Colombian meals is among the high causes to go to Colombia. Like its nation, Colombian delicacies is numerous and thrilling.

You might spot the odd Caribbean meals or Peruvian dish in these 28 greatest dishes – Colombian delicacies is massively influenced by its surrounding areas and colonial historical past. The nation is break up into six areas, every of which has its personal regional specialties as nicely. Remember that there are regional variations when touring round Colombia’s must-see cities – you don’t need to miss out on a specialty dish.

28 Traditional Colombian Dishes

Traditional Colombian Dishes

Ready to discover the perfect Colombian meals? Whether you need to strive some Colombian delicacies at dwelling or are visiting Colombia and are excited to strive native dishes, this information will introduce you to the perfect. We’ll cowl all the pieces, from Empanadas to Frijoles Rojos. Let’s dive straight in.

1. Colombian Empanadas

colombian food embanadas

Colombian empanadas have been a favourite dish since colonial instances. Its look is very like a Cornish pasty, and the pastry is folded over with a filling inside. It’s simple to identify with its attribute semi-circle form and pinched edge.

You’ll discover floor meat, potatoes, cheese, and hogao (tomato salsa sauce) inside. Of course, there are some recipe variations – particularly for meat-free variations of the dish. Colombian empanadas are simple to make at dwelling and scrumptious to eat in Colombia. If you desire a fast, simple snack, empanadas are among the best Colombian dishes.

If you need to strive an empanada earlier than you journey to Colombia, you can observe this recipe to make your personal at dwelling.

2. Pandebono

best colombian food Pandebono

The legend behind pandebono is that an Italian baker residing in Cali created the bread. When he bought it, he used to stroll the streets shouting ‘pane del buono’ (good bread); the title caught, and the bread grew to become one of the common Colombian meals.

So, what’s it precisely? The bread can be nicknamed Colombian cheese bread, which ought to provide you with trace. It is made with melted cheese, yuca flour, and eggs and formed into bagel or ball shapes. You can eat pandebono at breakfast, as avenue meals, or as a aspect at dinner – it’s a versatile dish. Remember that it’s best eaten when it’s nonetheless heat out of the oven. Pandebono is a dish meant to be eaten as contemporary as doable.

To get within the temper to your Colombian travels, make your personal Pandebono at dwelling with this recipe.

3. Bandeja Paisa

traditional colombian dishes bandeja Paisa

Bandeja paisa might be essentially the most iconic Colombian meals on this information. Some even go so far as to name it the nationwide dish. Bandeja paisa is a platter-styled meal with an assortment of meats, a fried egg, white rice, corn, plantain, purple beans, and an avocado. The meats embrace minced beef and chorizo sausage to chicharron. You’ll normally discover an Arepa on the plate, too (extra on that later).

Bandeja paisa is typical of Colombia’s Antioquia area and, like frijoles rojos, was excellent for staff spending lengthy days within the mountains and on farms. Bandeja paisa packs a nutritious punch and is filled with protein and carbohydrates. It stays a preferred lunch selection and is one to strive when you go to Colombia. Make your recipe at dwelling by following this recipe.

4. Frijoles Rojos

colombian cuisine Frijoles Rojos

Frijoles Rojos is a particular Colombian dish that makes use of cargamento beans, additionally referred to as purple beans. This Colombian meals is especially wholesome, and purple beans are an incredible supply of iron, potassium, low-fat protein, and fiber. It is a stew-like concoction, and the purple beans are blended with tomatoes, onion, and garlic. It is then normally served on high of a portion of rice.

Frijoles rojos was initially a laborer’s meal. It is budget-friendly and filled with power and vitamins – excellent for fueling a tough day at work. However, Frijoles Rojos have develop into a extensively eaten dish in Colombian delicacies. Watch this simple video to make it your self.

5. Bananos Calados

Bananos calados is one in every of Colombia’s greatest desserts and comes from the Quindio area, close to the Andes. It may not look (or sound) appetizing, however it’s simply one of many tastiest meals you may strive from Colombian delicacies. The dessert consists of fried bananas blended with lime juice and served with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream, making a candy but tangy deal with to your tastebuds. Occasionally, you may additionally discover the lime juice changed by orange juice and cinnamon – so preserve your eye out for any distinctive recipes.

Colombia has plenty of native fruit, and you may simply see that this has impressed many conventional recipes. Bananos calados are one meals to strive if you wish to expertise Colombia’s dessert scene. Make this scrumptious candy at dwelling to convey again reminiscences of your travels to Colombia.

6. Chicharron Colombiano

colombian food Chicharron Colombiano

Chicharron Colombiano is fried pork stomach, a hearty dish coated in onions, bay leaves, and seasoning for an excellent style. Chicharron is filled with taste and served with a crisp texture that has been perfected over generations of cooking. It is a typical dinner dish and is related to household and custom.

The dish is typical of Colombia’s Andean area. However, it originated in Spain and was launched to Colombia by Spanish colonizers. The Spanish recipe varies vastly; rind or stomach cuts can be utilized, in contrast to the Colombian model. You’ll discover that the majority nations in Latin America have their very own model of chicharron. Get able to strive as many alternative variations as doable. Colombia has since taken a agency spin on the dish, although, and chicharron has nicely and actually entered Colombian delicacies.

7. Coconut rice

Forget white rice; coconut rice is the tastiest. As its title might counsel, coconut rice is cooked with coconuts, giving it a yummy taste and getting it a spot on this record as a meal in its personal proper. There are two foremost methods coconut rice is ready: cooking it in coconut milk or mixing it with shredded coconut. Cooking it in coconut milk is the perfect, as you get a stronger coconut taste.

The historical past of coconut rice is a little bit of a thriller. The dish is scattered throughout the globe, particularly in Asia and South America. However, since coconuts are one in every of Colombia’s most typical tropical fruits, it’s no thriller why they’re so prevalent in Colombian delicacies. If you get the possibility to strive it, coconut rice is a tasty dish.

8. Pescado Frito

colombian food Pescado Frito

Pescado Frito is a basic, conventional Colombian meals. Pescado Frito interprets as fried fish and is served entire, with pores and skin and head intact. It is usually a little daunting when you aren’t used to consuming fish like this. However, you’ll quickly be gained over, as cooking the fish in its pores and skin boosts its taste and retains the fish meat moist. You can count on a lot juicer meat than you’d get consuming fillets and fish steaks.

In Colombia, the fried fish is normally mojarra or purple snapper. The fish is sliced after which flavored with lime and seasoning, typically sitting within the juice for some time to actually absorb the flavour. It is served with rice, plantain, and salad – the proper lunch dish.

9. Arepa de Huevo

colombian food Arepa de Huevo

Arepa de huevo is a variation of ordinary arepas, that are fried corn desserts. Arepas are a massively common breakfast meals and are additionally thought of considerably of a consolation meals. Arepa de huevo are one of many tastiest variations with egg. Preparing them entails frying a corn cake, splitting it, and filling it with an egg, then frying it once more to prepare dinner the egg inside. The result’s a fried egg coated in fried bread.

It is not any shock that arepas de huevos are one of the common dishes – particularly for breakfast. They are served in stacks (like pancakes) as a standalone dish. Just decide your sauce to match, salsa and bitter cream are nice selections. See this recipe to get up with a style of Colombia.

10. Sopa de Pollo

Sopa de pollo interprets as hen soup, and it’s one other comforting meal in Colombian delicacies. It is truthful to say that it’s most likely the commonest Colombian soup and is extensively eaten throughout the nation. The hen soup can be filled with plantain, corn, potatoes, and yuca. In truth, it’s so stuffed with substances that it typically seems extra like a stew than a soup.

Of course, hen soup is discovered worldwide, however Colombia’s model is especially scrumptious. The mix of substances like plantain and yuca is way more distinctive, and sometimes Colombian recipes use a whole hen.

Sopa de pollo is a wonderful Colombian meals to strive when visiting or to recreate at dwelling. It is greatest cooked slow-cooked and served piping scorching and is a kind of one-pot dishes the entire household loves.

11. Morcilla

colombian food morcilla

Morcilla is a blood sausage made with floor pork and pork blood. Morcillas are simply noticed due to their darkish, deep reddish-brown coloration. They are a really conventional dish throughout Latin America. You should not have any drawback discovering some to strive when you go to Colombia. And when you like black pudding, you’re in for a deal with.

Morcillas are ready from scratch, and the method entails squeezing the combination into sausage casings. The floor meat is blended with pork blood, onions, and rice earlier than being put into casings. Colombian recipes have a tendency so as to add cilantro and infrequently inexperienced peas as nicely. The sausages are then normally boiled to prepare dinner.

12. Cazuela de Mariscos

Ready for a Colombian seafood dish? Cazuela de mariscos is among the hottest Colombian dishes in coastal areas, particularly alongside the Caribbean Coast and Cartegena. It is a typical meals and seafood casserole or seafood stew – filled with all the pieces from prawns to mussels and lobster. The meats are cooked in coconut milk with a mix of greens. You would possibly even have white wine and cheese added to the combo if you’re fortunate.

Cazuela de mariscos is an iconic dish when visiting Colombia’s shoreline. What is best than a contemporary seafood dish? Most of the time, the substances have been simply caught out of the Caribbean Sea. This is certainly one to your record if you go to Colombia. Or strive making it at dwelling with this yummy recipe.

13. Colombian Bunuelos

colombian food bunuelos

Bunuelos are deep-fried balls filled with contemporary cheese – an ideal afternoon snack or breakfast chew. Strangely sufficient, they’re typically served alongside scorching chocolate and occasional, so you may typically discover bunuelos at cafes in Colombia.

Bunuelos are one of the common Colombian meals. The recipe creates dough from yucca flour, cornstarch, eggs, milk, and sugar. The deep-fried dough is then made, with the bunuelos organized into their attribute appetizer-sized ball form and floated in a pan of boiling vegetable oil.

It is assumed that bunuelos have been launched to Colombia by Spanish invaders. The snack is now eaten throughout Colombia as avenue meals and cafe or restaurant deal with. Bunuelos are particularly common at Christmas time. We discovered this easy to observe recipe on YouTube

14. Obleas

best colombian food Obleas
Filling of Obleas ready for the second wafer (beneath) to create the sandwich

Obleas is not only a typical Colombian dish; it’s loved throughout Spain and Latin America. Obleas appears to be like like a sandwich, and that’s exactly what it’s. The basic dessert consists of two wafers that sandwich a filling of dulce de leche and sometimes a mix of fruit, whipped cream, and jam. The Colombian model is sort of an identical however provides one particular ingredient – Colombian caramel.

If you’ve bought a candy tooth, obleas are among the best typical Colombian desserts to strive. You’ll discover them in every single place, from cafes to avenue stalls.

15. Lechona

Lechona is a Colombian meals for particular events. The dish consists of a complete roasted pig filled with onions, peas, potatoes, pork fats, white rice, garlic, and spices like cumin. After the pig has had its bones eliminated and has been stuffed, it’s positioned within the oven and slow-cooked (typically for as much as ten hours).

Needless to say, lechona is meant to be the culinary masterpiece of the desk. It is a dish designed to be shared with massive teams of individuals if you need to splash out on a flowery meal. You will typically discover particular person servings of lechona at eating places round Colombia, although, so preserve your eyes peeled.

16. Cholado

traditional colombian food Cholado

Let’s set Colombian meals apart for a second. Cholado is among the greatest drinks in Colombia, so let’s introduce you. The drink is a refreshing combination of shaved ice, contemporary fruit, and sweetened condensed milk. Depending on the place you get one, you may additionally discover the drink served with ice cream, wafers, and whipped cream.

Cholado originates from Jamundi in Valle de Cauca. It is a mixture between dessert, fruit cocktail, and drink – ticking all of the bins creatively and deliciously. If you like contemporary fruit and candy treats, it’s a nice drink to strive when visiting Colombia, but easy sufficient to recreate at dwelling.

17. Carimanola

Carimanolas are simple to identify. The tiny fritters are formed into attribute torpedo shapes, normally served in bulk as bitesize appetizers. They are a conventional Colombian meals, though you’ll additionally discover carimanolas in different Southern American nations like Panama.

Inside, carimanolas are filled with floor beef or shredded hen, cheese, and seasoning. The fritters are then deep-fried to create a kind of meat pie. They are gentle and crispy on the surface but delicate on the within. More typically than not, carimanolas include aji sauce. This shiny inexperienced sauce primarily consists of cilantro and is sweet and spicy – the proper aspect. Want to strive them earlier than your travels? Head over to observe this recipe

18. Colombian Sopa de Mondongo

colombian Sopa de Mondongo

While mondongo typically has a stew-like consistency, it’s truly one other typical Colombian soup. The soup consists of onion, potato, beef tripe, chorizo, and pork, all served piping scorching in a small bowl. It is a extremely conventional Colombian meals, and also you’ll discover mondongo at most eating places throughout the nation.

Like many Colombian dishes, sopa de mondongo is believed to have been launched by Spanish colonizers. The tomato-based soup has been firmly adopted into the Colombian culinary scene, although, and Colombian variations of the recipe have a particular twist.

19. Fritanga

colombian food Fritanga

Fritanga is a platter dish. The dish is extensively bought amongst avenue meals distributors and consists of a mix of meals heaped onto a big plate – normally barbecued on the road. So, what meals will you discover in fritanga? Usually, chorizo, sausage, plantain, and a mix of greens.

Fritanga is a Nicaraguan dish, though it has develop into adopted into Colombian delicacies. The story behind its origin is a tragic one. The meal was first created after the 1931 earthquake, which hit Nicaragua, and other people cooked meals on the road with barbecues.

Now, you’ll discover fritanga cooked throughout Latin America and Colombia. It is a historic, tasty, and filling dish to strive.

20. Bocadillo

colombian dishes Bocadillo

A bocadillo is a scrumptious Colombian meals made with guava paste – a product of a preferred tropical fruit. The dish is extraordinarily candy and a particular deal with and dessert. It has a melt-in-your-mouth texture however is in any other case not sticky to the contact. Bocadillos solely require a number of substances, largely panela and guava pulp, so they’re simple to make if you wish to recreate the dish at dwelling.

You’ll typically discover bocadillos served at cafes, normally alongside a slice of salty white cheese. They come lower into little rectangles or squares and are the proper bitesize treats.

21. Aborrajados

colombian food Aborrajados

Aborrajados are one dish that you just don’t discover as simply. It originated within the Valley de Cauca and is a regional specialty. The inventive (if barely bizarre-sounding) dish consists of deep-fried plantain filled with cheese to create a crispy, wholesome cheese chew. The absolute best place to strive aborrajados is within the area of the Valley de Cauca itself, the place you’ll discover the dish most prevalently anyway.

Aborrajados are served as snacks or appetizers earlier than a big meal. Don’t rule out the dish at pudding time, although, as you may add guava paste to the fried dish to create a candy deal with for dessert.

22. Arroz con Pollo

Arroz con pollo actually interprets as rice with hen. It is a straightforward however staple Colombian meals and very like Spanish paella. The dish consists of rice, hen, onion, and greens, with saffron tossed by the combination for added taste.

If you desire a filling dish, arroz con pollo is a superb selection. Plus, it’s simple to seek out and is extensively served at eating places and avenue vendor stalls throughout Colombia. It is believed that arroz con pollo originated in Spain whereas the nation was below Moorish affect. When Spanish colonizers arrived in Colombia, it’s presumed that the dish was launched to Colombian meals tradition.

23. Cocadas Blancas

colombian dishes Cocadas Blancas

We’ve coated heaps from Colombia’s coastal area. But what a few dessert from the Caribbean Coast? Cocadas blancas is an excellent candy dessert to your record. The dish is made with a mixture of shredded coconut, sugar, milk, and coconut water. Depending on the place you strive it, you may additionally discover further substances like cinnamon – most individuals have their very own twist on the basic recipe.

Cocadas blancas are normally bought on the road and alongside Colombia’s seashores. However, yow will discover them on dessert menus in eating places too. They are scrumptious meals, sticky and candy. You are in for a deal with attempting one.

24. Colombian Hot Chocolate

colombian hot chocolate

Speaking of desserts, scorching chocolate is one other candy deal with that Colombia excels at. The Colombian model of scorching chocolate known as Santafereno. It may be very completely different from the European and American variations of the drink. Instead of candy milk chocolate, the Colombian model makes use of darkish, unsweetened chocolate. Santafereno is usually made in water, not milk, with cinnamon or cloves typically added to counteract any bitterness. It might sound unusual, however Colombians are additionally well-known for dipping cheese of their scorching chocolate – which you will or might not need to strive.

Another factor that’s vital to know is that Colombia has been utilizing chocolate for hundreds of years. Chocolate is constructed from cacao timber, that are present in areas of Colombia and the Amazon basin. Colombia isn’t alone both; cacao has been used all throughout Latin America way back to the Aztecs and Mayans.

25. Calentado

Calentado is a staple in Colombian gastronomy and is a dish rooted in recycling leftovers from the evening earlier than – its title actually interprets as ‘heated’. The dish was born out of poverty to restrict waste, however now it is among the most conventional meals in Colombia.

The most typical substances in a calentado dish are white rice, plantain, and steak. It is then typically topped with a fried egg and arepas, even perhaps served with a scorching chocolate or espresso. By the character of the dish, calentado was primarily cooked at dwelling. Of course, now you’ll discover it on menus throughout the nation. At eating places, you are inclined to additionally discover avocado and sausage served alongside the usual substances.

26. Fried Plantain

colombian dishes fried plantains

Fried plantain is yummy Colombian meals. To the untrained eye, you may be forgiven for mistaking them for bananas. They look an identical, besides plantains are a lot bigger, much less candy, and solely develop into ripe as soon as they flip black. In their yellow levels, plantains are excellent for frying, which is the place deep-fried plantain is available in.

The neatest thing about fried plantain is its versatility. You might have it savory with breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Or you could possibly caramelize it and have it as a dessert. You might pair it with an egg, or you could possibly pair it with ice cream.

Fried plantain tastes like a potato, and the crisp outer layer offers technique to a delicate, squishy inside. You gained’t have any points discovering fried plantain in Colombia (or Latin America), so strive it your self.

28. Colombian espresso

If you like espresso, you’re in for a deal with. This conventional Colombian drink is world-famous, and the quantity of espresso beans grown in Colombia is thrilling for any caffeine fanatic. For essentially the most half, Colombia grows Arabica beans, that are gentle and candy to style, in contrast to the extraordinary Robusta. The proven fact that Arabica is a bit weaker than Robusta might be factor, although, since, in Colombian espresso tradition, it’s drunk most from late afternoon to early night. Not from the morning to early afternoons like within the US and Europe.

A good way to expertise Colombian is to go espresso tasting. And if you wish to go espresso tasting in Colombia, prioritize visiting Medellin or Manizales. These areas are famed for his or her espresso beans and have varieties named after them. You can e-book excursions round native espresso plantations or go to native cafes.

27. Maracuya

colombian food Maracuya

Maracuya would possibly sound unfamiliar, however the likelihood is excessive that you just’ve seen one earlier than. Passion fruit may not be a dish as such. Still, tropical fruits are such a longtime a part of Colombian gastronomy that we needed to embrace them on this record. Passion fruits are a deep purple on the surface, with a waxy, protecting outer pores and skin. Cut open, they reveal a tangy, scrumptious mattress of yellow seeds. These seeds may be eaten straight from the eagerness fruit or used as an ingredient for merchandise like ice cream or juice.

Passion fruits develop throughout South America and are believed to have initially come from the Northern Argentina area earlier than spreading out in recognition throughout the continent. Not planning a go to to Colombia? No drawback. You can strive ardour fruit worldwide since it’s a important export product.

Colombian meals is among the greatest cuisines on the planet. There is a lot to strive, so get began as quickly as doable. Luckily, if you’re visiting Colombia, there are many meals excursions to pattern conventional Colombian delicacies – main you round the perfect spots. You can try our greatest journey ideas right here as nicely.

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