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If you are a foodie getting ready to visit charming Ecuador, prepare yourself for a memorable adventure that includes sampling a selection of colorful cuisine. Thanks to its three beautiful geographic regions, the Amazon, the Andes, and the Pacific coast, Ecuadorian food is waiting for all curious travelers who have a passion for food, with a multitude of delicious dishes. 

If you are curious about what type of food you’ll taste on your future holiday, continue reading this article and find out all about eight traditional Ecuadorian foods you must try in Ecuador. 

Ecuadorian Food: Hornado

If you are not a vegetarian, you can’t visit Ecuador without tasting the delicious “hornado”, which is a roasted pig, carved freshly and served with fried plantain, salad, or the tasty, traditional fried potato cakes. Though this dish is usually found at larger events to family gatherings, you can also find it in restaurants and food markets. 

📸@chronicles.of.a.traveller

Ecuadorian Food: Fanesca

Whether you are a foodie to just a hungry and curious traveler, trying the mouthwatering “fanesca” is a must in Ecuador. The well-known Ecuadorian food is traditionally served once a year, during the week before Easter Sunday, and it is a chunky, sacred stew, made of, among other ingredients, squash, and a variety of beans, like lentils, and corn. There are 12 different beans, representing the 12 apostles. If you are in Ecuador during this time of the year, don’t refuse a bowl of this sacred dish. 

Ecuador’s Fanesca Is A Lenten Soup Flavored With Centuries Of Tradition
📸@pilarwoloszyn

Ecuadorian Food: Ceviche

If you are a foodie and you know a thing or two about South America, you probably also know that “ceviche” is one of its most popular dishes, even if the recipe differs from one country to the other. Made of tasty fish and seafood, which are cooked before being marinated in lime juice, Ecuadorian ceviche is served with popcorn or fried green plantain slices, and it’s delicious. 

Ecuadorian Style: Shrimp Ceviche
Using Ecuadorian shrimp—what many consider to be the world’s best shrimp
📸@carmaosceviches.uio

Ecuadorian Food: Llapingachos

Raise your hands if you like fried potatoes patties stuffed with cheese, and order a portion of Llapingachos when in Ecuador. Definitely, a must-try Ecuadorian food, Llapingachos, are sometimes prepared with flour made from yuca, and they are served with peanut sauce. Yummy! 

Ecuadorian Cheesy Potato Patties, just delicious!
📸@pilarwoloszyn

Ecuadorian Food: Uchumanga

If you like stew, while visiting Ecuador, especially the Amazon region, don’t be afraid of ordering “Uchumanga”. This mouthwatering stew is also very versatile, being made with all kinds of river fish, depending on what the fishermen catch. It is a great Ecuadorian dish, especially if you are a big fan of river fish. 

Uchumanga Is a stew commonly eaten in the Amazon region of Ecuador
📸@aviatourstravelservices

Ecuadorian Food: Cuy

If you are an adventurous foodie, and you feel ready to try a different type of meat while in Ecuador, you must order “cuy”. Eaten in the Andean region of the country, this dish is made with a guinea pig and usually served barbecued…whole. But, if seeing the little paws might make you feel weird, there are also places where the meat is chopped and included in stews.

Ecuadorian Food: Fried Yuca

Even if it is quite unknown in North America and Europe, the yuca root is actually the most popular source of carbohydrates in the world, and it is a must-try Ecuadorian food. This delicious fried root is as common as French fries, so you can find it anywhere in Ecuador. 

Delicious fried yuca with hunacaina sauce
📸@contrasting__flavors/

Ecuadorian Food: Fried Plantain

Trying street food wherever you travel helps you get closer to the culture of the area. That’s why you can’t leave Ecuador without indulging in its delicious street foods. And one of the things you must try here is the fried plantain, a “cousin of the banana”. You can find it on street corners, and you will love it because it’s cut in the middle, filled with a slice of mozzarella, and roasted. Absolutely delicious!

Goat cheese & fig power greens salad.
Topped with fresh mozzarella, sprouts, poppyseeds, and avocado.
With a side of crisp cucumbers, radishes, marinated olives, and fried plantain chips.
Including garden salsa and fresh guacamole.
📸@jammin.thekitchen

These are just eight of the traditional Ecuadorian foods you must try in Ecuador, but there are plenty of other delicious dishes that promise to make your taste buds run wild. 

If you love food and want to explore some really fantastic foodie destinations in South America, we’ve got the list for you! Adding culinary activities to your vacation itinerary is one of the best ways to experience the culture of the destination you’re in. Contact us and we can help you plan your culinary vacation.

Read More: Chilean Food – Top 5 Popular Chilean Food Dishes You Must Try

Maria Barciela
Founding Partner & Director Across Argentina & South America
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We believe South America is one of the most unforgettable places on earth – and we want you to help you fall in love with the continent just like we have.
Born and raised in Buenos Aires, we founded Across South-America to help guests experience the ‘real’ South America – without compromising on comfort. A decade later, and Across South-America is a well-known boutique travel agency crafting outstanding vacations for couples, friends and families from all over the world. Our main point of difference is that we’re local experts. South America is our backyard. . Read More
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