10 Most Popular Foods from Nicaragua

Foods from Nicaragua are so much more than chicken, rice and beans.

The food here has a Caribbean flair which is particularly noticeable in the coastal regions of Nicaragua.

10 Most Popular Foods from Nicaragua

Foods from Nicaragua are so much more than chicken, rice and beans.

The food here has a Caribbean flair which is particularly noticeable in the coastal regions of Nicaragua.

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Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

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food from nicaragua city of Leon

Whether you eat in local eateries, street market stalls or restaurants, you can bet that Nicaragua food is full of flavour.

 It’s time to get excited about foods from Nicaragua! 

1) Arroz con pescado

Grilled Pescado - Popular food from Nicaragua
Popular Nicaragua food – Grilled fish

Arroz con pescado is a dish of rice, scored deep-fried whole fish, and homemade tomato sauce. The sauce is prepared by frying onion, tomato, chiltoma (sweet pepper), salt, pepper and a little butter.

The sauce is poured over the whole cooked fish when served.

Cooked green plantains and fresh salad are typically served alongside this much-loved dish in Nicaragua.

2) Indio Viejo

foods from nicaragua - Indio Viejo
Indio Viejo is delicious food from Nicaragua. Photo Credit: visitanicaragua.com

Indio Viejo (literally translates to Old Indian) is a Nicaraguan dish that originated in pre-Colombian times. 

It’s also similar to the popular Cuban dish ropa vieja. Indio Viejo is a thick soup made of maize dough, onion, and shredded beef.

It’s a slightly sweet-flavoured soup, traditionally served with cuajada (curd cheese) and tostones (fried green plantains).

3) Churrasco con Chimichurri

Churrasco con Chimichurri
Nicaragua food faves – Churrasco con Chimichurri

This sounds super simple, but it is oh-so delicious. A grilled piece of beef, typically skirt steak, is flame-grilled, sliced and drizzled with chimichurri sauce.

Chimichurri is a zingy, fresh salsa made with parsley, garlic, chilli, oregano, lemon juice, and red wine vinegar. It’s one of my favourite sauces and tastes amazing on other grilled meats and vegetables.

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4) Baho 

food from nicaragua Baho
Nicaragua Food – Baho. Food from Nicaragua you need to try. Photo Credit: Wikipedia

A dish that is typically eaten on the weekend. From personal experience, it’s a perfect meal if you’ve had too many beers the night before.

This dish is prepared by chopping chunks of beef, plantains, cassava, green plantains, capsicum and onions. These ingredients are steamed on low heat in a large cooking pot sealed with layers of banana leaves.

This process traps all the incredible flavours of the contents inside. After cooking slowly for five to eight hours, the dish is ready. Baho is served with a cabbage slaw dressed in vinegar.

It’s the perfect accompaniment to this dish as it cuts through the meat and vegetables, enhancing the flavour. 

5) Berenjenas rellenas (stuffed eggplants)

Eggplants are typically cut in half, lengthways and baked until tender before removing the pulp.

Then, a combination of vegetables and rice or a blend of ground meat (usually pork and beef) and vegetables is generally used to stuff the hollowed-out eggplants.

Vegetables that fill the eggplants include zucchini, onions, tomatoes, mashed potatoes, peppers, and chilli. Garlic, oregano, thyme, rosemary, or parsley, along with salt and pepper, are used to taste the filling

6) Vigoron 

food from Nicaragua vigoron
A tasty dish. Vigoron is foods from Nicaragua that is fun to eat. Photo Credit: Wikipedia

This is a quick and easy dish to prepare and a common dish to cook in all Nicaraguan households. It’s made up of chicharrones (fried pieces of pork rind), chopped cabbage, onions, tomatoes, fresh chilli and boiled yucca.

I learned that the way to eat Vigoron is to take a piece of pork rind and top it with a piece of yuca and salad. 

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7) Rondón

Nicaragua food Rondón
Nicaragua food – Rondón

‘Rondón’ is a pronunciation derived from the English word ‘Run down’.

This traditional stew is made from fish, shrimp, snail, beef, pork and sometimes turtle meat. Vegetables commonly used are yams, yucca (cassava), plantain, potatoes and breadfruit.

Everything is simmered in a pot, and fish stock is sweetened with coconut milk to create this mouthwatering stew. Nicaraguan food must be on your list!

8) Nacatamal – My favourite street foods from Nicaragua

Nicaragua food Nacatamal
Nicaragua food -Nacatamal

Many Central American countries have their own version of tamales, and the Nicaraguan tamale is Nacatamal. It’s made with corn dough stuffed with pork or chicken, wrapped in plantain leaves, and steamed.

Nacatamal is my favourite food from Nicaragua, and I love that you can buy it from street vendors everywhere.

Other ingredients found in Nacatamal filling are onions, fresh chilli, garlic, potatoes, rice, bitter orange, and mint. 

9) Gallo Pinto -The National Dish of Nicaragua

food from nicaragua gallo pinto
Gallo pinto is simple, yet delicious food from Nicaragua. Photo Credit: getrecipecart.com

It’s a simple and easy dish yet delicious. Gallo Pinto is a combination of rice, beans, peppers, and spices. Many Nicaraguans eat this dish daily, which is especially popular at breakfast. 

Gallo Pinto is incredibly popular in Costa Rica (check out 6 amazing Costa Rican dishes here) and other Central American countries.

10) Guirila (corn pancake) 

guirila corn pancake food from nicaragua
Guirila (corn pancakes) Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Guirila is a tortilla or pancake made using young white maize. It’s a little sweet and a little salty but perfectly balanced when combined with some homemade cuajada (cheese curd) and cream. They are also commonly enjoyed alongside pork or other meat.

Typically found in the north of the countryside, the best guirila are found in Sebaco and Matagalpa.

Travel Tips for North America

We have many travel guides and tips for North America— a fascinating continent!

We love travelling in Mexico and have many food and detailed guides. Read them here

These top 6 travel hacks to save money are great to read when planning your travels.

Are you interested in visiting these 15 best places to travel in the USA,  the ten best foods in New York, or searching the 12 best cheap eats in Vancouver?

If you plan to travel long-term after leaving North America, these 21 cheapest countries to visit will help you make your hard-earned dollars stretch a bit further.

For food lovers, don’t miss our top 10 countries for foodies; one is in North America.

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