International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Nicaragua: Recipes and Cuisine

Nicaraguan children jumping rope

Image Creative Commons by FMSC

"La comida Nica," as Nicaraguans call their cuisine, is a Latin creole mix of indigenous and Spanish dishes and ingredients. Corn, beans, plantains, yuca and pork are popular ingredients. Seafood is common along the Caribbean coast. Nicaraguans make extensive use of a wide variety of tropical fruits. Typical dishes include nacatamales, vigorón, indio viejo and gallo pinto.

Typical Nicaraguan Dishes

A list of typical Nicaraguan dishes and foods. Use it to help you plan a Nicaraguan-style meal, party or festival.


  • Queso Frito (Fried cheese)
  • Tajadas (Plantain chips)

Soups and Stews

  • Mondongo (Tripe soup)
  • Sopa de Cola (Oxtail soup)


  • Ensalada de Repollo (Cabbage and tomato salad)
  • Vigorón (Yuca, pork rind and cabbage salad)


  • Pollo Encebollado (Chicken simmered with onions)
  • Pollo Horneado (Roast chicken)


  • Baho (Steamed beef with yuca and plaintain)
  • Bistec Encebollado (Steak topped with onions)
  • Bistec Entomatado (Steak in tomato sauce)
  • Carne Asada (Grilled steak)
  • Cerdo Frito (Fried pork)
  • Churrasco (Grilled beef steak)
  • Lengua en Salsa (Beef tongue with sauce)
  • Salpicón de Res (Shredded beef salad)
  • Vigorón (Yuca, pork rind and cabbage salad)

Fish and Seafood

  • Camarones al Ajillo (Shrimp in garlic-butter sauce)
  • Chuleta de Pescado (Breaded fish filet)
  • Pescado a la Tipitapa (Whole red snapper Tipitapa-style)

Vegetables and Beans

  • Frijoles Rojos (Red beans)
  • Gallo Pinto (Red beans and rice)
  • Plátanos Fritos (Fried ripe plantains)
  • Yuca (Boiled yuca root)

Breads and Grains

  • Arroz (White rice)
  • Nacatamales (Meat and vegetable-filled tamales)
  • Quesillos (Tortilla with cheese and onions)
  • Tamales de Elote (Fresh corncakes)
  • Tortillas (Corn flatbread)


  • Vinagre de Piña (Pineapple vinegar)


  • Arroz con Leche (Rice pudding)
  • Buñuelos de Yuca (Yuca fritters)
  • Flan de Leche (Caramel custard)
  • Pastel de Tres Leches (Central American cake of three milks)
  • Pío Quinto (Rum cake)


  • Café con Leche (Coffee with milk)
  • Cebada (Barley beverage)
  • Chicha (Fermented corn beverage)
  • Horchata de Arroz (Sweet rice beverage)
  • Pinolillo (Cocoa cornmeal beverage)
  • Pitahaya (Dragon fruit beverage)
  • Pozol (Fermented corn beverage)
  • Tiste (Corn and cacao beverage)

Nicaraguan Recipes

Try these recipes from Nicaragua.

Gallo Pinto

Central American gallo pinto with eggs

(Costa Rican, Nicaraguan red beans and rice)


Freshly steamed nacatamal

(Honduran, Nicaraguan meat and vegetable-filled tamales)


Plate of baho

(Nicaraguan beef, plantains and yuca steamed in banana leaves)


Vigorón (Nicaraguan yuca, pork rind and cabbage salad)

(Nicaraguan yuca, pork rind and cabbage salad)


Nicaraguan pinolillo gourds

(Nicaraguan, Costa Rican cocoa-cornmeal drink)