Ecuadorian Food: 19 Best Ecuadorian Dishes You Have To Try

Ecuadorian Food: 19 Best Ecuadorian Dishes You Have To Try

We didn’t know the way passionate the folks of Ecuador had been about their meals till we spent two weeks touring all through the nation to take pleasure in totally different Ecuadorian dishes from totally different areas. Ecuadorian meals amalgamates historical past, mixing indigenous and colonial cooking methods and dishes. You’ll be able to style conventional meals with roots within the Amazon, Spanish colonial meals in Quito, and Andean dishes within the surrounding Mountains. Whereas the Ecuadorian shoreline is understood for its seafood dishes, the inland area has hearty grilled meats and river fish.

The nation’s format and historical past lead to a massively thrilling trendy delicacies, with loads of conventional Ecuadorian meals to attempt. Of all of the South American nations, Ecuador is one in all our favorites by way of delicacies.

Conventional Ecuadorian Meals

Traditional Ecuadorian FoodTraditional Ecuadorian Food

It’s arduous to pinpoint a single nationwide dish in Ecuador. There are the famed roasted guinea pigs, deep-fried bolon de verde, and grilled pincho meats. On this information, we’ll introduce you to essentially the most conventional meals you should attempt in Ecuador. Whether or not you fancy a hearty soup or pan de yuca, we’ll discover a conventional Ecuadorian dish for you.

1. Fanesca

traditional ecuadorian food fanescatraditional ecuadorian food fanesca

Fanesca is a wealthy, hearty soup deeply ingrained in Ecuadorian tradition and custom. It’s notably related to the Easter season. This Ecuadorian dish symbolizes the fusion of Indigenous and Spanish influences.

The substances mirror the nation’s biodiversity, incorporating 12 totally different sorts of beans and grains, comparable to lentils, peas, corn, and broad beans, every representing one of many apostles. Bacalao (salt cod) is at its middle, with milk and pumpkin thickened right into a creamy consistency. It’s each nourishing and sophisticated in taste.

It’s typically consumed throughout Holy Week throughout Ecuador however guests can order it at eating places in Ecuador, notably in Quito. I truly had this dish in Quito at San Augustin Restaurant and located it to have a extremely complicated and wealthy taste. There may be undoubtedly rather a lot happening on this soup, and you must have an excellent urge for food earlier than ordering it..

Fanesca is commonly garnished with hard-boiled eggs, fried plantains, cheese, and generally empanadas (like mine was), including layers of texture and richness.

2. Llapingachos

ecuadorian food Llapingachosecuadorian food Llapingachos

Llapingachos are a standard Ecuadorian dish recognized for his or her pleasant style and texture. These fried potato muffins are a staple within the nation’s delicacies. They’re basically potato pancakes, made out of a mix of mashed potatoes and cheese, seasoned with a touch of annatto for colour and taste.

As soon as fashioned into patties, they’re pan-fried till golden and crispy on the surface whereas remaining gentle and gooey on the within. Llapingachos are generally loved throughout Ecuador, particularly within the Andean areas.

They’re usually served as a aspect dish however can simply take middle stage in a meal. Accompaniments for llapingachos fluctuate, however they’re usually served with a aspect of avocado, aji (a spicy Ecuadorian sauce), and curtido (a sort of pickled onion salad).

3. Guatita

ecuadorian food guatitaecuadorian food guatita

Guatita means ‘little stomach’ in English, and this dish consists primarily of beef tripe, a meat reduce taken from the abdomen. It’s an absolute staple in Ecuadorian delicacies, and the meat is cooked in a scrumptious peanut sauce and served creamy with boiled potatoes. The wealthy peanut sauce is spiced with cumin, garlic, and cilantro, a flavorsome physique for the marginally rubbery tripe meat. For an additional kick, picked onions are often served on the aspect. It’s simple to see why guatita has such a fame. Some even declare guatita as the final word hangover treatment – we’ll allow you to be the decide of that.

Guatita is without doubt one of the dishes influenced by Spanish colonialism in Ecuador. Spanish use of beef tripe dates again to the sixteenth century.

4. Ceviche

ecuadorian cuisines cevicheecuadorian cuisines ceviche

Ceviche is a well-known dish, and likelihood is you’ve already heard of this fashionable fish dish. It’s stated to have originated in Peru, however many nations boast their very own diversifications. Ecuadorian ceviche actually takes its influences from the Incas and Spanish colonialism across the Ecuadorian and Peruvian border. Given the proximity of Peru and Ecuador, it’s additionally no shock that the dish is equally fashionable in each nations.

Ceviche is a chilly uncooked fish and seafood dish, fashionable all through Latin America. The seafood is marinated in lime and lemon juice and blended with onions tomatoes, and cilantro. It usually contains shrimp, however may also be made with fish or different seafood.

The fish and seafood are usually served chopped into little chunks and served with onions. It is available in many alternative varieties, together with a much less conventional vegetarian Ceviche for the trendy world which makes use of bell pepper and avocado as a substitute, however shrimp ceviche is our high advice. Served chilly, shrimp ceviche is really scrumptious.

5. Encebollado

ecuadorian food encebolladoecuadorian food encebollado

Encebollado is a hearty fish stew made with tuna, yuca (cassava), tomatoes, onions, and spices. It’s usually served with pickled purple onion and tomatoes on the aspect. It’s particularly fashionable as a hangover treatment.

Heading to the Ecuadorian coast, you’ve received to do this delectable fish stew. Encebollado is a skinny soup served with cumbersome fish (often tuna), cassava, and pickled onions. The phrase ‘encebollado’ actually interprets as ‘cooked with onions’, which is a superb clue as to what this dish principally will get its style from. Encebollado actually packs a punch with taste, and its skinny stew sauce is gentle and aromatic – the proper clean addition to its essential characteristic; fish.

Encebollado rose to recognition as an alternative choice to ceviche and actually hit its heights of fame within the Nineteen Seventies. After all, now, you’ll find the dish extensively out there in eating places and road stalls. It has even unfold away from its birthplace on the shoreline, and you’ll find it additional inland in locations like Quito.

6. Arroz Marinero

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Arroz marinero is solely seafood rice, a massively fashionable a part of coastal delicacies in Ecuador. This conventional dish might be discovered throughout South America and is much like Spanish paella—three guesses the place it originated.

Its essential substances are rice, sauteed shrimp, clams, onion, and spices, all cooked in a flavorsome seafood broth for added style. Whereas the most effective place to style this dish is undoubtedly the Ecuadorian coast, you’ll find it everywhere in the nation in eating places. In case you are searching for inspiration for Ecuadorian meals to cook dinner at house, that is additionally an actual desk characteristic of a dish. With all of the clam shells, it’s a actually dramatic-looking dish to attempt at house.

7. Tigrillo

traditional ecuadorian dish Tigrillotraditional ecuadorian dish Tigrillo

In case you take pleasure in hashbrowns for breakfast, you’ll love Tigrillo, a standard Ecuadorian breakfast dish. Neglect a fried egg and get extra conventional; tigrillo serves mashed inexperienced plantain alongside scrambled eggs, melted cheese, and a scattering of sauteed onion. In case you are searching for inspiration for breakfast, tigrillo is a wonderful wager. You often order it alongside a cup of piping sizzling espresso, and it’s the proper method to begin your day.

The mashed plantain might be sweeter or actually savory, relying on how ripe it was. Yellow plantains are sweeter, whereas inexperienced plantains are usually utilized in dishes like this to offer a extra savory style. The dish is usually served with sizzling sauce on the aspect and with Ecuadorian espresso.

Tigrillo originated within the coastal areas of Ecuador, though it’s equally widespread within the Andean area. Yow will discover it in most cafes in these areas or in important cities.

8. Bolon de Verde

ecuadorian cuisine bolon de verdeecuadorian cuisine bolon de verde

Bolon de Verde are pan-fried inexperienced plantains, basically a dumpling aspect dish. This can be a actually fashionable Ecuadorian meals, and we’d go so far as to say they’re competing for that nationwide dish title. These inexperienced plantain dumplings are stuffed with cheese, pork, or shrimp and fried. They’re usually eaten for breakfast or as a snack.

The flexibility of those little dumplings is what makes them so fashionable. You’ll be able to eat them at breakfast, served alongside fried eggs, or you may snatch them up from street-side distributors for a fast lunch or afternoon snack. They’re served piping sizzling and with a deliciously crispy exterior.

It’s extensively thought that bolon de verde originated in Ecuador someday after the plantain arrived within the early sixteenth century. Nonetheless, the precise creation story is a thriller. This tasty deal with is unquestionably value making an attempt when visiting.

9. Pincho

typical ecuadorian food pinchotypical ecuadorian food pincho

Pincho is a Spanish dish that merely refers to a small snack. It’s a variation of tapas, often served on a cocktail stick or small piece of bread. Consider it as a bar snack slightly than shared desk plates. Given the Spanish affect on Ecuador, it’s no surprise this sociable dish caught on. It’s now some of the conventional dishes you should attempt in Ecuador.

The most well-liked pincho in Ecuador is a road meals kebab. Relying on the place you go to in Ecuador, it’s possible you’ll discover them known as pinchos or chuzos. This dish is made out of a mix of chorizo, plantain, rooster or beef and plantain chunks.

10. Choclo Con Queso

traditional ecuadorian food choclo con quesotraditional ecuadorian food choclo con queso

Choclo con queso is a scrumptious aspect dish or fast snack in Ecuador. Road meals distributors usually serve the cooked mature corn as a standalone dish, though you’ll additionally discover it in some eating places and cafes as a aspect dish. The toasted corn is served alongside creamy recent cheese. It has a punchy style because of a wholesome dousing of black pepper, garlic, and a clean coating of melted butter. Choclo con queso hits the spot whenever you need a wholesome snack for a fast craving.

Corn has been cultivated in Ecuador for 1000’s of years and is a principal crop of the Andean hillsides. Tough estimates say that corn cultivation has been ongoing throughout the nation for over 6,000 years.

11. Enconcado de Pescado

Enconcado de PescadoEnconcado de Pescado

One factor coastal Ecuador is known for is its use of coconut sauce. Due to this fact, you’ll immediately know the place pescado enconcado, a fish dish served in thick coconut milk and lime juice, comes from. This tasty dish is a lip-smacking mixture of candy and tangy, with tender white fish frivolously flavored in a creamy sauce. Tomato, onion, and bell peppers are often added to additional bulk the sauce.

Normally, pescado enconcado is served alongside rice or fried plantain. It’s a hearty meal selection, good for anybody craving an intense taste.

12. Locro de Papa

Locro de PapaLocro de Papa
Ecuadorian meals sequence: potato soup or “locro”

Locro de papa is one in all Ecuador’s tastiest soups. Mostly often known as easy potato soup, it’s easy but efficient—a shocking combination of potatoes, recent cheese, garlic, and broth. The dish has roots within the Andean highlands, and its recognition comes from how heat it’s in wet climate. In case you go to Ecuador within the wet season, maintain your eyes peeled for the tasty locro de papa.

In English, ‘locro’ is only a meat or vegetable stew. Whereas locro de papa is potato soup, the ‘stew’ reference signifies how hearty the dish is. It’s a closely filling meal; no surprise it’s a standard favourite.

13. Colada Morada

colada moradacolada morada

Does anybody have a candy tooth? Colada morada will fulfill your candy craving. This eye-catching purple drink is the sweetest Ecuadorian dessert and wealthy in fruit juice. It accommodates a mixture of strawberries, blackberries, pineapple, and purple cornflour. It’s tremendous candy and a good way to attempt a few of Ecuador’s fruits.

Whereas colada morada may be a fun-looking drink to attempt in Ecuador, it has a extra somber backstory. It’s historically loved on the Day of the Lifeless, each November the first, when Ecuadorians bear in mind these they’ve misplaced and go to cemeteries to take flowers and clear graves. It’s a lesser-known model of the Mexican Day of the Lifeless.

14. Seco de Chivo

seco de chivoseco de chivo

Seco de chivo is a wealthy goat stew. It’s braised in a heavy garlic, cumin, tomato sauce, onions, and cilantro sauce. Anticipate loads of flavors and goat meat completely blanketed in a wealthy brown sauce. Seco de chivo is often served alongside yellow rice and fried plantains and is historically a dish for particular events like household celebrations. Fortunately, you may as well discover it in loads of eating places for on a regular basis consuming.

This dish is massively fashionable within the areas of Loja and Santa Elena. It’s a conventional variation of a seco, a thick stew.

16. Pan de Yuca

Best Ecuadorian Food pan de yucaBest Ecuadorian Food pan de yuca

Pan de yuca is without doubt one of the most scrumptious Ecuadorian meals decisions. These tiny, bite-size balls of bread are made out of yuca flour or cassava starch and cheese. Yow will discover them as road meals, snacks, or starters in eating places and cafes. The gentle bread rapidly wins you over, and the cheese provides a deliciously robust taste.

Yuca bread is discovered predominantly in Colombia and Ecuador. Colombia calls its sister dish pan de bonos and makes use of cornstarch, an ingredient Ecuadorian Yuca bread skips. The dish is alleged to have originated alongside the nation’s border in Manabi as an answer to the dearth of normal flour. The considerable cassava starch created the proper bread various, and ‘yuca bread’ was born.

15. Plantain Chips


Plantain chips are a wholesome snack out there in supermarkets and from road distributors. Plantains are much like bananas; in actual fact, to the untrained eye, you would simply mistake the 2. The one distinction is that plantains are extra starchy and far greater. Plantain chips are made out of fried inexperienced plantains (not ripe plantains). They’re a fantastic supply of fiber and wealthy in vitamins like potassium and nutritional vitamins A and C.

Yow will discover fried plantains everywhere in the world. The plant initially got here from Southeast Asia and is present in Africa and South America. Ecuador actually caught onto the plantain hype in 1910 when it entered the banana commerce, at which period it additionally launched the banana-twin plantains.

16. Cuy Asado

traditional Ecuadorian Food Fried Guinea Pigtraditional Ecuadorian Food Fried Guinea Pig

The overwhelming majority of the world might think about guinea pigs as a pet. Nonetheless, these cute little rodents are historically from the Andes of South America. And earlier than they had been in a pet store close to you, they had been conventional dishes because the pre-Colombian occasions. Indigenous peoples have eaten roasted guinea pig for 1000’s of years, and you’ll nonetheless attempt the dish right now.

Grilling meat is historically carried out over sizzling coals for a barely smoked high quality, and we advise grabbing some sizzling sauce as a condiment. Asado is usually loved with a heavy-bodied purple wine, and we suggest treating your self to a sit-down restaurant expertise for this dish.

Asado is a standard Andean dish usually marinated in garlic, cumin, and salt and roasted complete. It’s merely grilled meat served at a barbeque or grill restaurant. In order for you a protein-filled meal in Ecuador, search for an asado. It may embrace any meat, together with rooster, beef, and goat. In Ecuadorian delicacies, you may even discover grilled guinea pig (extra on that later).

Asado is a closely conventional meals, and other people have been grilling meat for hundreds of years in Ecuador. Meats like guinea pig have existed amongst indigenous communities for 1000’s of years, whereas meats like beef had been launched by Spanish colonization.

17. Papi Pollo

Papi pollo is actual consolation meals; if you happen to’re craving a hearty meal, you’ll love this Ecuadorian dish. It consists of roast rooster served alongside heaps of French fries doused in ketchup and mayonnaise. If the chef is feeling further beneficiant, you may as well discover a fried egg served on the aspect of the plate. It’s half quick meals and half protein overload. In essence, papi pollo actually fills your abdomen.

Yow will discover papi pollo at loads of informal eating places and takeaways throughout Ecuador. Whereas roasted rooster is an age-old Ecuadorian dish, this adaptation is a extra trendy love affair. It’s now such a basic that we simply needed to embrace it on this information.

18. Hornado

Traditional Ecuadorian Dishes HornadoTraditional Ecuadorian Dishes Hornado

Hornado is a beloved Ecuadorian dish that includes slow-roasted pork as its centerpiece. It’s celebrated for its succulent meat and crispy pores and skin. This culinary delight is ready by marinating the pork in a mix of garlic, cumin, and different spices and slow-roasting it till it achieves an ideal steadiness of tender inside and crunchy outdoors.

Hornado is a well-liked dish throughout Ecuador. It’s present in markets, festivals, and household gatherings and symbolizes festivity and neighborhood.

It’s historically served with llapingachos (potato pancakes), mote (hominy), ensalada (a recent salad), and aji, a spicy Ecuadorian sauce that provides a kick to the dish. In some areas, avocado slices and curtido, a sort of pickled onion relish, are additionally widespread accompaniments, enhancing the flavors and textures of the meal.

19. Bandera

Ecuadorian Flag colours

Bandera is a famously colourful Ecuadorian dish. Its origin is a little bit of a thriller, nevertheless it’s principally believed to have popped up within the Nineteen Seventies. Bandera is a pot-luck model dish within the sense that it combines a number of dishes on a big platter—a mix-and-match meals. You are likely to get sliced avocado, white rice, and a few sort of ceviche (extra on ceviche later). Salad with recent tomato can also be widespread.

The phrase ‘bandera’ interprets to flag in English. Bandera dishes are discovered all through South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. They’re usually colourful to imitate the colours of the nation’s flag. The Dominican Republic has a very tasty bandera dish.

Bandera is a superb choice for a fast introduction to Ecuadorian meals. It’s some of the widespread dishes you should attempt in Ecuador, and it may be discovered at most eating places and cafes.

Typical Ecuadorian Meals: FAQs


Whether or not you might be craving Ecuadorian soups, breads, or meat dishes, relaxation assured—the nation has loads of decisions. We personally love the number of Ecuadorian delicacies. Earlier than you go, although, try these high FAQs.

What’s a typical meals in Ecuador?

Bolon de Verde is a massively fashionable meals in Ecuador; they’re tiny little deep-fried balls of inexperienced plantains which are stuffed with cheese and spices. The proper snack.

Chochos, chifles and tostado are a preferred road meals in Ecuador. you’ll find them in Quito and different essential cities in Ecuador

Inexperienced plantain chips, chocolate, and yuca chips are all glorious decisions for conventional snacks in Ecuador.

What’s Ecuador primarily recognized for?

Ecuador is understood for its coastal dishes, carbohydrate parts like potato and rice, and meats like pork, beef, rooster, and guinea pig inland and fish on the coast. Ecuadorian meals is heavy in carbohydrates and protein. It additionally makes use of plantains and fruits.

Ecuadorian gastronomy emphasizes citrus-marinated juices and meats, from roasted pork to particular rooster dishes. In case you really feel actually adventurous, you may attempt conventional dishes like cuy asado and even pollo a la cola—rooster cooked in Coca-Cola. Ecuador is a incredible spot for foodies and people wanting a recent stamp of delicacies in South America. All the pieces has a pointy taste.

Cheers to Ecuadorian Delicacies

Best things to do in Quito Ecuador Sunset at Casa GangotinaBest things to do in Quito Ecuador Sunset at Casa Gangotina

It’s fascinating to see how indigenous influences affect delicacies, comparable to the normal Andean guinea pig meat. Equally, you may hint darker colonial historical past by considerable issues like lime juice. Tasting Ecuadorian meals is a means of higher understanding the nation’s historical past and cultural make-up.

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Are you visiting Ecuador? Try our information on whether it’s safe to visit right now, full with well timed updates on have the most secure keep potential given present occasions and developments. In case you are contemplating a Galapagos cruise, you may learn all about our expertise on this Galapagos Cruise review.

Ecuador has been one in all our favourite nations to go to, and we hope you’ve an exquisite time. Attempt as many of those meals as potential—Ecuadorian delicacies is unimaginable.

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