Best Ecuadorian Food – 50 Best Ecuadorian Dishes And Traditional Food In Ecuador To Try
Ecuadorian cuisine is not yet world-famous, but one thing is for sure, the food in Ecuador is good! Some dishes are an authentic traditional food in Ecuador to try and drinks in Ecuador. Click here to book online Quito Day Tour and activities
Ecuadorian cuisine has Spanish influences. You can have a budget of $20 USD a day and it can already get you more than enough decent meals in Ecuador.
WHERE TO STAY IN ECUADOR
Accommodation in Ecuador is around €10 for a dorm. And while a hotel that is a double room in a budget can go up to €50.
BOOK YOUR TRAVEL INSURANCE
Two of our favorite travel insurance: Heymondo Vs Safetwing cheapest travel Insurance. You can get for $135 USD your HeymondoTravel Insurance with Heymondo discount code valid for 90 days. Read our full comparison of Genki vs Safetywing Travel Insurance Review and the comparison Heymondo vs Genki
BEST ECUADORIAN FOOD: 50 BEST ECUADORIAN DISHES AND TRADITIONAL FOOD IN ECUADOR TO TRY
ECUADORIAN DISHES: TRADITIONAL FOOD IN ECUADOR
Locro is a rich and filling stew that dates back to the day of the coming of the Spaniards conquistadors in South America. The most famous variant of this original and authentic stew is the Argentinian locro, which is generally cooked with dried white maize kernels, meat, and veggies.
Locro is normally made up of pork or beef chops, ribs, or offal, with sausages and smoky bacon thrown in for good measure.
Llapingachos are traditional Ecuadorian potato patties that are frequently accompanied by a spicy peanut sauce. They’re made with cheese and cassava or mashed potatoes. Llapingachos are commonly cooked with avocados, vegetables, eggs, meat, and sausages as a side salad.
3. SECO DE CHIVO
Seco de chivo is a type of Ecuadorian chivo that is commonly served with fried plantains or yellowish rice. The meal has been almost generally made for special event, and can contain goat meat.
Seco de chivo had once been prepared with chicha, a corn drink, but somehow it is now more usually compose of beer and fruit juices to add more taste to the stew.
Ecuador’s traditional cuisine is guatita, a substantial, rich stew made from tripe cooked in a peanut and potatoes stew. The dish’s name means little guts in English. White rice, pickled onions, diced avocado, and hot sauce on top are classic additions to guatita.
5. SECO DE POLLO
Seco de pollo is a slow-cook chicken stew served with beer, naranjilla, onions, garlic, peppers, tomatoes, seasonings, and herbs in Ecuador. The seco de gallina criolla is another name for the dish. It’s called seco de pollo if it’s made with a young chicken.
In Ecuadorian culture, a hornado is an entire roast pig. It’s commonly seen in highland marketplaces. Llapingacho, mote, and veggies are commonly served with hornado.
Fritada is a meal made with minced pork that has been cooked in water and then fried in drippings. Pork is heavily spiced, and garlic and onions are frequently served with it. Fritada is a popular Ecuadorian dish that may be available at a range of traditional restaurants and roadside diners.
8. CAZUELA DE CAMARON
Authentic Ecuadorian seafood cazuela de camaron is prepared on the stove and afterward bake in a clay pot till the soup creates a crust over top.
The delicious tastes of the shrimp, plantain, toast peanuts, cilantro, and tomatoes blend on pan into such a thick sauce in this faster variation. Cazuela con camaron is a quick and tasty meal served over rice.
9. CUY (GUINEA PIG)
Cuy (Guinea Pig) is a traditional Ecuadorian food also popular in Colombia, Peru and Bolivia. Westerners are terrified of this dish, which they regard as more of a pet than a meal. Consider the allure of delicate, smokey black meat beneath a shimmering golden veneer of shatteringly crisp skin.
Cuy is primarily consumed on special events, following an indigenous tradition dating back to ancient times to the Incan empire.
10. CEVICHE IN ECUADOR
Ceviche is served in all parts of Latin America. The raw fish is marinated in lime for 12 hours, so it is no longer so raw. Ceviche usually spends on shrimp, lobster, lemon, cilantro, tomatoes, and plenty of seafood.
In Ecuador cuisine serves ceviche usually for lunch and dinner as one of the most popular food in Ecuador. The difference between Ceviche in Ecuador and Peru is served with broth in Ecuador instead of dry in Peru.
11. LOMO SALTADO (STIR-FRY BEEF)
Lomo saltado is the most famous foods in Ecuador coming from Peru. Stir-fried marinated pieces of sirloin or beef tenderloin, onions, yellow peppers, and tomatoes create lomo saltado. Mostly all Ecuadorian restaurants, whether modest or sophisticated, offer the meal over French fries and rice on the side.
12. AJI DE GALLINA
Aji de gallina is a spicy chicken meal with cheese sauce and chicken broth. It’s usually commonly served with olives, as well as baked potatoes.
Aji amarillo chilis, garlic, onions, nuts, cheese, and crustless bread are used to make the sauce, which is commonly spiced with cumin, pepper, oregano, turmeric, and parsley. Aji de gallina exemplifies the importance of simplicity. Also, this dish will tickle your taste buds!
Churrasco is a Brazil barbecue technique that involves skewering juicy portions, cuts, steak, and chunks of beef, calf, lamb, pork, and chicken and grilling them over a wood fire.
The skewers are flashily displayed throughout the eatery, and servers wander among some of the tables to demonstrate the juicy meat to hungry diners. As a taste of what’s to come, Churrasco begins by appetizers and a selection of salads from a large buffet.
Fanesca is a traditional Ecuadorian stew with a rich thickness. Freshly Andean grains, peas, beans, and lentils are combined with salt fish simmered in milk in this dish. Fanesca is prepared in round dishes with fried plantains, parsley, and hard-boiled eggs on top.
Encocados is a fish meal that is flavored using citrus and seasonings before being served in a cilantro, onions, tomatoes, and pepper salsa.
This basic fish meal with a luscious coconut sauce is popular along Ecuador’s coast and in the Galápagos Islands. Encocados are served with such a sauce flavor with achiote, spiced with a mild taste but vibrant in color.
16. MOTE PILLO
The mote pillo is a kichwa word that means wrapped corn. Corn, milk, egg yolks, annatto, green onions, and salt are among the ingredients. Mote pillo is a traditional Ecuadorian cuisine from Cuenca, the province of Azuay, and the entire southern highlands.
Cheese or pork rinds can be used to create the bolones. Chicharrones are fried pork flesh bits that are similar to bacon in Ecuador. Bolones were among the most prevalent snacks offered on the street and at markets around Ecuador.
A menestra is cooked using lentils, but other ingredients can also be used like beans. In Ecuador, these are famous foods. Menestra is typically usually eaten with plantains, salad, and a protein of your option.
19. ARROZ CHAUFA
Arroz Chaufa is coming from Chinese influence. It’s made up of fried rice, meats, veggies, and fruits, among other ingredients.
It contains a mixture of fried rice with veggies, typically containing scallions, eggs, and chicken, swiftly cooked at a high flame, often in a wok with soy sauce and oil. Arroz Chaufa is generally served with sliced onions and parsley.
20. ARROZ CON CAMARONES
Arroz con camarones is a famous meal across Latin America. Rice cooked in a fragrant shrimp broth is paired with prawns, peppers, tomatoes, and onions in this meal. Arroz con camarones is typically flavored with cumin, garlic, and achiote, and garnished with chopped fresh parsley.
21. ARROZ CON POLLO
Arroz con Pollo is rice with fried chicken. Arroz con pollo is usually served in local restaurants with French fries and salad.
22. HUMITAS SALADAS
Humitas saladas are delicious steaming sweet corn cakes made with coconut corn, onion, garlic, cheese, eggs, and cream. It’s indeed cooked while enclose in corn husks. Humitas saladas are particularly popular in Ecuador’s Sierra or Highland region, particularly in places including Loja, Cuenca, and Quito.
BEST ECUADORIAN FOOD: ECUADORIAN CUISINE TO TRY
Cevichochos is an elevated Ecuadorian dish. This was first offered by city food carts in Quito about 45 years ago when it was first developed. Cevichochos is a delectable, light, and healthful dinner that may be prepared with meat, as a veggie meal, and also as a vegan option!
Empanadas is one of my favorite street food in Ecuador. You can find fried empanadas salty with meat, cheese, beans, potato, chicken or fish.
There are also sweet empanadas with butter and dulce de leche so delicious too! Prices are around $1 USD. They are perfect after drinking few beers before sleeping after partying in Ecuador!
25. PAPAS RELLENAS
Papas Rellenas (filled potatoes) is one the most famous street food in Ecuador. Papas rellenas are made of stuffed potatoes filled with meat, rice or vegetables. It tastes delicious weather eaten hot or cold, especially with ají sauce.
You can find everywhere and almost anytime of the day similar to empanadas. Prices are around $1 USD as street food in Ecuador.
Patacones are deep-fried green plantains. Patacones are served as a snack with black beans, guacamole or spicy sauce. Patacones can be a side dish too in Ecuador.
27. CHOCLO CON QUESO
Choclo con queso is Ecuadorian food that can be eaten as a snack, starter, or side dish. The flavor is similar to regular sweet corn. Choclo with queso is typically purchased from street vendors.
Salchipapa is a simple but delicious street food. Hot dogs with French fries with ketchup and mayonnaise aren’t healthy but adults and kids love it so much.
29. DULCE DE LECHE
Dulce de Leche is a caramel-like dessert made by heating sweetened milk. You will find it as street food and in local restaurants. Prices are around $2-3 USD.
30. HIGOS CON QUESO (FIGS AND CHEESE)
Higos con queso is one of Ecuador’s tastiest and most sought-after desserts. Serve with cheese slices to complete this delectable fig dessert. Higos con queso can be found throughout many eateries in Ecuador, particularly those that appeal to tourists.
31. PAN DULCE
Pan dulce is a sweet bread with an unusual shape. Since this snack has so many varieties, each snack has a name that corresponds to its look. Pan dulce is a snack treat that is served with a cup of hot coffee or hot choco.
32. ROSCA DE COCO
The sweet braid pastry ring rosca de coco contains a delicious coconut interior and a sweet coating. Comparable to sweet roll dough, the dough is buttery and brioche-like.
33. MOROCHO (MILK CEREAL)
Chop corn, milk, cinnamon, honey, and raisins are use to create morocho, a rich sugary drink. It’s a traditional Ecuadorian soothing drink that’s mostly served on the sidewalks or in marketplaces. Morocho has the texture of a pudding shake and is typically eaten with just a spoon.
Espumillas is a soft and airy meringue dessert with a strong following in Ecuador. Eggs, sweeteners, water, and purée fruit are the most common ingredients. Espumillas are typically served by street sellers in Ecuador, but this delicious treat can also be cooked at home.
35. TRES LECHES CAKE
Tres Leches Cake is a milk cake with meringue cream on the top. Tres Leches Cake is one of the most popular desserts in Ecuador and it’s also baked in most of the countries in Central America. Prices are $3-4 USD.
Flan is gold-colored caramel custard served with liquid caramel on top. Flan is one of the most popular desserts in Ecuador and Latin America.
37. ARROZ CON LECHE
Arroz Con Leche is a mix of rice milk, with sugar, lemon and cinnamon. Arroz con leche is a must to try in the list of Ecuadorian desserts. Prices are $3-4 USD.
38. PAN DE YUCA
Pan de Yuca is a tapioca flour-based Ecuadorian cheese bread. Pan de Yuca bread is perfect for an afternoon snack and breakfast with a cup of hot chocolate or coffee.
Chontaduro is one of the most popular fruits in Ecuadorian streets. With a butternut squash or sweet potato flavor, this Peach Palm Fruit has a floury texture similar to boiled potatoes.
Chontaduro color is red to orange, and the flesh is orange with a little pit. Chontaduros is usually added to salads or eaten with honey and salt.
40. ECUADORIAN FRUITS
As a tropical country you will have to try different fruits in Ecuador. There are fresh juices and many fruits in the local markets.
The most exotic ones are Guanabana and Tomate de Arbol (similar to tomato but different taste). You will also find passion fruit, bananas and papayas everywhere in Ecuador. Prices are so affordable.
DRINKS IN ECUADOR
41. CHICHA MORADA
Chicha morada is originates in the mountain areas but is now widely drunk throughout the country. Corn culli, also known as purple maize, is the main ingredient in the drink. Species of corn that are widely farmed and harvested all along mountains.
Chicha morada has a delicious, not-too-sweet flavor that reminds me of mulled wine and melting grape popsicles.
Aguardiente is one of the most popular drinks in Ecuador. You will see people having Aguardiente at home and when partying in the streets. You can drink Aguardiente in a shot or you can mix it with juice too.
Chicha is a homemade fermented or non fermented derived from grains, maize or fruit. Be careful guys when drinking chicha in Ecuador because is so sweet. And after a few of them maybe you will get drunk.
Pilsener has been a favorite amongst Ecuadorian family and friends. A wonderful emblem of love and history to appreciate. In Ecuador, Pilsener has the levels and overall and market share.
Pisco is an alcoholic liquor created from fermented grape juice. It was developed as a replacement for orujo in the 16th century. Pisco can indeed be consumed straight, but it’s most commonly found in cocktails, the most popular of which is the famous Pisco Sour.
Mistela is a beverage that is from a combination of grape have to and alcohol. It is used as a treat complement and has a sweet flavor. In the winery’s 2,500 liter acacia foudres, the mistela is age for a minimum of one year.
Canelazo is a hot drink in Ecuador. Canelazo is made of water with sugar cane, cinnamon, lime juice, cloves and you can add aguardiente (optional to do it).
48. FRUIT JUICES IN ECUADOR
You must try fruit juices in Ecuador. You will find them everywhere as street food. Prices are around $2-3 USD for a small glass depending on the flavors.
Lulo with citrus flavor, Guanabana creamy flavor and one of the most popular. Tomate de arbol means tomato tree and more options. Just try all of them and choose your favorite one!
49. BATIDOS (SMOOTHIES)
Batidos (Smoothies) is a drink made with the seasonal fruit mixed with powdered milk. Smoothies are made with milk instead of water. Choose your favorite seasonal fruit like mango, banana and papaya. All of them are delicious and prices are around $2-3 USD.
50. HORCHATA TEA
Horchata tea is a sweet tea beverage produced in Ecuador from a range of herbs and flowers. It’s a 16 to 32 medicinal plant infusion with sugar, honey, or raw sugar cane, and lemon extracts. The method of preparation you choose, horchata tea will have a varied flavor.
Hope you liked our Ecuadorian food blog post. Let us know if we missed any food in Ecuador and which one is your favorite one in the list of Ecuadorian dishes.
Feel free to use our links for discounts. By using our links, you will help us to continue with the maintenance of the website and it will not cost you anything. Thanks for the love guys.
About the Author: Ruben, co-founder of Gamintraveler.com since 2014, is a seasoned traveler from Spain who has explored over 100 countries since 2009. Known for his extensive travel adventures across South America, Europe, the US, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and Africa, Ruben combines his passion for adventurous yet sustainable living with his love for cycling, highlighted by his remarkable 5-month bicycle journey from Spain to Norway. He currently resides in Spain, where he continues to share his travel experiences alongside his partner, Rachel, and their son, Han.