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One of the things to do in Cuba is certainly to taste some of the island’s traditional dishes!

Ropa vieja

This Creole dish is usually reserved for special occasions and consists of long-cooked filamentous beef in a special broth, accompanied with a sauce of tomato, onion, olives, garlic, salt and pepper and served with rice You can easily find it in restaurants.

ropa vieja cuba gastronomy food @ny.foodie
ropa vieja cuba gastronomy food @ny.foodie

The plantain banana

The plantain banana is a fruit that is eaten like a vegetable. It is served fried, very often in slices, and serves as an accompaniment to main dishes. If the slices are thin, they are called mariquitas; when cut into thicker slices, they are called tostones.

plantain banana mariquita cuba gastronomy food @bodeguitadelmedio
plantain banana mariquita cuba gastronomy food @bodeguitadelmedio
patacon cuba gastronomy food @rinconcito miami
patacon cuba gastronomy food @rinconcito_miami

Vaca frita

A recipe very similar to the previous one, but with the use of fewer ingredients: the fried cow is shredded beef that is seasoned with salt, lemon is added and it is cooked with a garlic and onion frying. It has no sauce, unlike old clothes, and is eaten with rice and/or patacones (fried plantains).

vaca frita cuba gastronomy food @cubandando
vaca frita cuba gastronomy food @cubandando

Arroz Congris

arroz congris cuba gastronomy food @bodeguitadelmedio
arroz congris cuba gastronomy food @bodeguitadelmedio

Moros y Cristianos

Inexpensive, this dish consists of white rice and black beans, whose colours inspired the name of the recipe since it literally means “Moors and Christians”. Its version with red beans and meat is called “congri”, the basic dish of Cuban cuisine. It is especially used to accompany meats.

Arroz con pollo

This chicken rice is a popular and easy to find dish in Cuba. Its speciality lies in the spices that accompany the meat and rice, as it is usually accompanied by cumin, saffron, olive oil and oregano, but also by tomatoes and sometimes even peas, for a complete meal.

Crocodile meat

Not very commercialised, fans will have to go as far as Guamá or Giron to find some. The taste would be quite similar to that of veal, and it can be cooked, for example, with a spicy pineapple sauce.

Papas Rellenas

These appetizers are made from mashed potatoes, rolled into a small ball in egg and breadcrumbs. They are sometimes filled with meat and peppers, as well as garlic and onions. They can be found on most Cuban tables at mealtime.

papas rellenas cuba gastronomy food @cajacaliente
papas rellenas cuba gastronomy food @cajacaliente


Cuban lobsters are quite famous, you can find them in most restaurants, prepared in various ways. They can be spicy and spicy, or cooked with sofrito, but it is said that the best ones are eaten right after fishing, grilled with a simple lemon fillet. The best would be to try it in a private house

lobster cuba gastronomy food @cubanfoodstories
lobster cuba gastronomy food @cubanfoodstories

Please note: lobster fishing is highly regulated and is not possible during the breeding season.

cuba lobster gastronomy food @cubanfoodstories
cuba lobster gastronomy food @cubanfoodstories


In Cuba we only ate it once, but when we traveled to Colombia we swelled up like chili! And it is delicious! It is a soup prepared with meat (in Cuba they use mainly beef and pork), corn, yucca, potatoes, green bananas, guasca, avocado, lime and spices (cumin, pepper, chili and salt).

caldoza cubana ajiaco cuba gastronomy food @islandvibeztv
caldoza cubana ajiaco cuba gastronomy food @islandvibeztv

Picadillo a la criolla

Another of the typical Cuban dishes you have to try before you go. It is prepared with minced beef and pork minced beef stewed in onions, tomato, pepper, garlic and spices. Usually accompanied by white rice and black beans and fried plantains.And often ingredients such as olives, wine or raisins can be added. It is also known as “picadillo a la cubana” or “picadillo a la habanera” but they are all the same dish.

picadillo a la criolla @bodeguitadelmedio
picadillo a la criolla @bodeguitadelmedio

Cuban-Style Stuffed Pineapple

Pineapples are Cuba’s favourite fruit: they are found in sauces, spiced or stuffed with minced meat. In the latter case, beef and ham are added, as well as butter and sugar during cooking, for exotic sweet/savoury flavours.

Yucca with mojo

Yucca with mojo is a traditional Cuban dish, simple to prepare but with a very tasty result. The yucca is boiled and the mojo is prepared with olive oil, lime juice, salt and garlic. It is usually ordered as an accompaniment to other dishes or to share, almost never as a single dish (although if you are a vegetarian it can save you a nice meal).

Lechon asado

This is a very well known dish in Cuba. Lechon asado is a spit-roasted pig, cooked until the skin is crispy. You may even be able to see a pig roasting in one of the food stalls. If you like, you can try fried pork rind alone – it’s called “chicharrones”.

Lechon asado is often served with a sauce called mojo, made with garlic, spices, oil, onion and a small amount of bitter orange or lime juice.

lechon asado cuba gastronomy food @cubaislabella
lechon asado cuba gastronomy food @cubaislabella

In Cuba, lechon asado is a typical dish for celebrations. Several times, a whole pig is cooked in the ground and covered with banana leaves. It is a tradition and a feast. In addition, they often roast the pig in a specially designed box called porcelain.


The Tamal is an indigenous recipe, made with corn mass and cooked in a banana leaf. It is possible to add elements such as chicken or pork. There are also variants with rice

tamal cuba @elalmendronmiami
tamal cuba @elalmendronmiami

chicharrones con limon

Perfect to enjoy as an aperitif with a good Crystal Bear

chicharonnes con limon cuba gastronomy food @kapelalimentos
chicharonnes con limon cuba gastronomy food @kapelalimentos

Cuban Pizza

Pizza is an institution in Cuba. We can say that you have not been to Cuba if you do not stop in a ventanita to taste a pizza.

cuban pizza gastronomy food @cuba .
cuban pizza @cuba_.

With the Pizza experience, you will also take a lesson on the art of recycling paper. Here we can learn that it is possible to eat in the street without polluting with unnecessary packaging.

Cuban Sandwich

Sandwiches are never missing from Cuban windows, but if you want to try the unique and authentic Cuban sandwich, watch out for the ingredients: Cuban bread, roast pork, sweet ham, mustard, Swiss cheese and pickles in brine. Die!

cuban sandwich gastronomy food @hablax cuba
cuban sandwich gastronomy food @hablax_cuba

Arroz con Leche

arroz con leche cuba gastronomy food @chromatic.caroline
arroz con leche cuba gastronomy food @chromatic.caroline

Cuban Flan

It is a popular Cuban dessert, generally made from eggs and condensed milk, creamy and tender, served with vanilla, lemon or cinnamon aromas.

Although there may be slight variations from one place to another.

What is clear is that it is one of the most loved desserts, by locals and tourists alike.

cuban flan gastronomy food @cajacaliente
cuban flan gastronomy food @cajacaliente


Nothing more local than walking the streets of Havana with a Bon Churro

churro cuba gastronomy food @feerbonilla
churro cuba gastronomy food @feerbonilla

Dulce de Mani

Very popular in Cuba, Dulce de mani is sold mostly in the street by street vendors. Another dish to try, especially since it is delicious and it helps the local economy.

cuba gastronomy food @dumplingsandmore
cuba gastronomy food @dumplingsandmore

Cuban Cake

Cuban cakes are always very colorful, and… very sweet. Enough to give you a revolutionary strength !

cuba gastronomy food @
cuba gastronomy food

Romeo y Julieta

Made with guava and cheese, it is a very popular dessert in Cuba. Ideal also when you go hiking

cuba gastronomy food @cuballama
cuba gastronomy food @cuballama

Coppelia’s ice cream

Ice creams in Cuba are delicious and you can’t leave the island without tasting Coppelia’s ice cream.

Very popular, you will often see long queues, but it’s worth it. They are also incredibly cheap.  

Eating in Cuba FAQ

\u003cstrong\u003eIs cuban food spicy ?\u003c/strong\u003e

Cubans like to season their food with \u0022sofrito\u0022, a sauce made with tomatoes, garlic, onion, oregano and pepper, which flavors many of their dishes.

\u003cstrong\u003eIs Cuban Food healthy ?\u003c/strong\u003e

Inspired by the tropics, Cuban cuisine uses some of the typical ingredients that go into most local dishes: black beans, rice, spices and meat.

\u003cstrong\u003eCan I drink the tap water \u003c/strong\u003ein Cuba

The water is theoretically drinkable, but we recommend that you don’t drink the tap water. Try to buy closed bottles, your stomach will thank you and you will avoid possible indigestions.

\u003cstrong\u003eWhat food do Cuban people eat\u003c/strong\u003e

Cuba is a place with typical dishes and a rich gastronomy. For a relatively small country, Cuba has an abundance of culinary delights, even if the vagaries of rationing and state-run restaurants can overshadow its dynamic potential.\u003cbr\u003eA good example is the cuisine of eastern Cuba, which borrows generously from African and Caribbean culinary traditions for its use of coconut, chocolate, honey, annatto seeds and other spices. Cuban cuisine uses fresh ingredients prepared simply, often in stews, soups and sandwiches. Meats are roasted slowly until they fall tender.

How much does food cost in Cuba ?

Here is a list to get you an idea :\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003ePizza :\u003c/strong\u003e 0,2 Cuc\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003eMain dish:\u003c/strong\u003e 3-12 cuc.\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003eMain dish with seafood:\u003c/strong\u003e 8 -20 cuc.\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003ePasta:\u003c/strong\u003e 3-7 cuc.\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003eDrinks:\u003c/strong\u003e 1-3 cuc.\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003eCocktails:\u003c/strong\u003e 1,5-3 cuc.\u003cbr\u003e- \u003cstrong\u003eStreet soda: \u003c/strong\u003ecans and mineral water cost 1-1.5 cuc.

What does cuban food consist of ?

Pork is undoubtedly the most popular meat in Cuba and appears in many local dishes. The island’s pork meat is of better quality than beef. There are several types of preparation for pork: cooked, fried or grilled. From the pig meat, one can prepare the lechon asado.\u003cbr\u003eThis typical Cuban dish is prepared with black beans cooked with white rice. The black beans are stuffed with meat, usually marinated pork. Garlic, oregano and sour orange are also added to the recipe.\u003cbr\u003eIt should be noted that rice and black beans are among the basic ingredients of the Cuban population. You will find them all over the island, and at a good price.

\u003cstrong\u003eWhat is Cuban Food\u003c/strong\u003e ? History and Origin

It can be said that the basis of Cuban gastronomy is Spanish cuisine, since its food has brought an infinity of ingredients and the way to prepare them, but due to the difficulty of obtaining some of the ingredients of typical Spanish dishes in Cuba, the Creoles have gradually introduced new indigenous elements.\u003cbr\u003eCuban cuisine has also been influenced by African cuisine and comes from the time of slavery, when the cooks themselves were slaves.\u003cbr\u003eThese influences greatly affected the way dishes were prepared and also brought new ingredients, such as yams.\u003cbr\u003eCuba has received thousands of Chinese immigrants, who have also contributed to Cuban gastronomy.\u003cbr\u003eIn this case, the most important element of their contributions was the jinx.\u003cbr\u003eAll these influences have provided Cuban cuisine with its own unique identity in the world.

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