The Bolivian cuisine has its roots from a variety of cultural backgrounds, it’s a mix of Spanish and native flavors, available produce, foods and cooking styles. You'll find local favorites varying from region to region, even within cities. Been Bolivia a land locked country and little inmigration not a lot of people has ever heard of it, but we assure you is owrth trying.
In the west side of the country, where climate is hurshest, cuisine relies on carbohydrates and protein from potatoes and different meats like beef, pork, lamb, chiken, llama and trout, from Lake Titicaca.
In the lowlands, and amazonic region the diet is composed mainly of
the products available in the area like: rice, yucca, plantains, freshwater fish, vegetables and fruits are used on most kitchens, been the main course or as sides.
Some examples are:
As you seethe variety is large and fits any taste, most restaurants will serve a mix of Bolivian foods from all the regions and one thing is sure, you won't leave hungry! Visit our list of Bolivian restaurants around the world to find the restaurant that fits your curiosity and hunger.
For recipes visit our Bolivian Recipes page.
We recommend you to try if not all of these Bolivian recipes once you get to Bolivia or if you visit a Bolivian restaurant:
Chairo: beef soup, vegetables and the special ingredient chuños (chunho: dehydrated potato following and ancient andean recipe)
Carne de sol: grilled salted meat served with beans, rice and vegetables
Chuño or tunta: it's not a dish, normally acommpanies many recipes, but delitious and well worth trying, is a dehydrated potato following and ancient andean recipe, it accompanies many bolivian dishes
Empanadas: beef, chicken or cheese pasties
Humintas: ground corn steamed wrapped in corn leaves similar to the tamales but are made sweet
Pacumutu: beef kebab
Pique a lo macho: chopped beef over French fries, diced and sauté onions and fresh tomatoes
Pukacapas: spicy cheese empanadas
Sajta de pollo: chicken in hot sauce with tunta (an Andean dehydrated potato), diced tomatoes and onions.
Saice: spicy meat stew acompanied by tunta and diced onion and tomatoes.
Salteñas: diced beef or chicken empanada, usually eaten in the morning before lunch
Silpancho: breaded beef accompanied by eggs, rice and fried potatoes (not French fries)
Tucumana: fried beef, chicken or cheese empanada similar to salteña.
LLajua: Not a dish but a spicy sauce to go with any food if you are in for a new culinary experience try Llajua or halpahuayca a popular fresh made hot sauce (only for the daring) that accompanies many of this dishes, you can request it on any restaurant across the country.
For recipes to many of this dishes visit our Bolivian Recipes page.
Bolivia's location in the world
Full name: Plurinational State of Bolivia
Short name: Bolivia
Population: 9.1 million (UN, 2005)
Capital: Sucre (official), La Paz (administrative)
Largest city: Santa Cruz (1.3 million)
Largest Metropolitan Area: La Paz (1.6 million, Includes: La Paz, El Alto and Viacha)
Area: 1.1 million sq km (424,164 sq miles)
Major languages: Spanish, Quechua, Aymara, Guarani
Major religion: Christianity
Life expectancy: 62 years (men), 66 years (women) (UN)
Monetary unit: 1 boliviano = 100 centavos
Main exports: Natural gas, zinc, gold, silver, lead, tin, antimony, wood, sugar and soy beans
GNI per capita: US$1,010 (World Bank, 2006)
Internet domain: .boInternational dialing code: +591