Caribbean cuisine is as vibrant and colorful, with lots of punch of flavors, as it’s people or land or waters. All of those islands doting this beautiful ocean are full of culinary marvels and mouth watering dishes that have been passed from generation to generation.
Caribbean cuisine is a fusion of African, Creole, Cajun, Amerindian, European, Latin American, Indian/South Asian, Middle Eastern and even Chinese. People have come to this part of the world from all over, bringing their food traditions and flavors. Today we are presenting you the Best of the Best Caribbean recipes.
From Jamaica to Aruba, Trinidad to the Dominican Republic to Puerto Rico and so many others.
From their tasty appetizers like tostones and empanadas, to their delicious mains like picadillo and pastelon, to their sweet desserts like rum cakes and flan… You are going to find everything and some more in this list of the best Caribbean recipes. Set your taste buds ablaze by trying all these in your very own kitchen. Have fun…
1. Carne Guisada (Latin Beef Stew)
Carne Guisada is a Caribbean flavor bomb of a stew. Melt in your mouth tender chunks of beef along with veggies and plenty of flavor enhancers.
2. Pernil (Puerto Rican Roast Pork)
Pernil is a marinated, slow roasted pork shoulder or leg with crispy pork skin and tender, flavorful meat underneath. It is most popular in Latin American countries around Christmas, but is delicious all year!
3. Jamaican Curry Chicken
This Jamaican curry chicken recipe is a hearty one-pot meal that is full of bold flavors. Marinated chicken in their beloved curry powder is cooked slow and low to create one amazingly tasty curry chicken.
4. Asopao de Camarones (Shrimp and Rice Soup)
Camarones Guisados is succulent shrimp stewed in a Puerto Rican-style tomato sauce. It’s loaded with garlic, onions and plenty of fresh cilantro. Simple and delicious..
5. Ropa Vieja (Cuba’s National Dish)
This slow cooker Ropa Vieja is made with tender, juicy beef, bell peppers, onions and Spanish olives. Everything is slow cooked in aromatic crushed tomatoes and seasonings to make it one extremely delicious meal. Try it once and this will sure go in your rotation.
6. Jamaican Jerk Chicken
This Jamaican Jerk Chicken recipe is dedicated to all of my fellow spice lovers. Marinated in an amazing concoction of ingredients, it’s a total flavor bomb with a customizable level of kick.
It’s a tropical delight that will totally tickle your taste buds. And you can either grill or bake it, so it’s not only great for cookout season, but all year round.
7. Vaca Frita (Cuban Crispy Shredded Beef)
Time to get cooking another Cuban favorite… Vaca Frita!! It’s very straight forward, and tastes so delicious.
Flank steak is slowly stewed for hours and tenderized. But we are not stopping there. Once the meat is fork tender, shred it and fry it to crispy perfection with lots of garlic and lime.
8. Jamaican Curry Shrimp
Look at this Curry Bowl!! Bold and insanely inviting! My ultimate comfort food, Jamaican Curry Shrimp, is a vibrant, spicy, and incredibly flavorful dish that perfectly captures the essence of Caribbean cuisine.
9. Fricase de Pollo (Cuban Chicken Fricassee)
This Fricase de Pollo recipe is a hearty and delicious stew, where tender chicken thighs braise in a well seasoned, wine-infused broth.
The Cuban version of Chicken Fricassee, it is a beautiful combination of flavors, and gets further bulked up with potatoes, carrots, bell peppers and olives.
10. Bistec Encebollado (Steak & Onions)
Bistec Encebollado, simply meaning steak and onions in Spanish. If you don’t know Bistec Encebollado… well, it’s about time you learn this Latin flavor bomb!
11. Rasta Pasta
Rasta Pasta! Are you ready for a colorful meal bursting with flavor? Here it is!
This is a creamy pasta loaded with red, green and yellow peppers. You can also top it off with shrimp or chicken. It’s generously seasoned with Jamaican jerk seasoning and finished off with freshly grated parmesan and mozzarella cheese.
12. Habichuelas Guisadas (Puerto Rican Stewed Beans)
Habichuelas Guisadas (Puerto Rican Stewed Beans) are an essential Puerto Rican side dish whenever you’ve having rice. They’re perfectly creamy, tender, simple to make, and bursting with Latin flavors!
13. Bahamian Boiled Fish
How does a nice hearty bowl of seafood goodness sound? Don’t let the name deceive you, this Bahamian staple is anything but boring! Hearty, flaky fish simmered in a delicious broth with potatoes, onions, tons of lime juice and a bit of hot kick. This is classic island comfort food!
14. Puerto Rican Sancocho (Caribbean Beef & Vegetable Stew)
This Puerto Rican beef stew recipe is a hearty soup with chunks of tender beef, root vegetables and more! Don’t worry if you miss one or two vegetables, we promise it would still taste awesome in their absence.
15. Jerk Shrimp
Juicy, plump shrimp with BOLD island flavors… Jerk Shrimp! Caribbean style.
Spicy, balanced with the right amount of sweetness and loads of zesty, bright flavors. Just a few simple ingredients from your pantry and you can create an amazingly delicious shrimp recipe in under 20 minutes.
16. Arroz con Gandules
This Arroz con Gandules recipe may be my new favorite rice dish! Tender rice with pigeon peas, generously flavored with salted pork, sofrito, tomato sauce and some great Latin seasonings.
17. Dominican Pollo Guisado (Chicken Stew)
Pollo Guisado, a classic comfort food in many Latin countries. This Dominican version uses simple ingredients to create an amazing depth of flavor.
18. Caribbean Coconut Mussel Curry
Creamy… coconutty… seefoody… Extra yummy Caribbean coconut mussels. Easy, delicious, and sure to please any crowd! Try this delicious Caribbean style curry, but be warned, you will get hooked!
19. Pinchos (Puerto Rican Chicken Skewers)
Pinchos are just your simple meat-on-a-stick meal, but these tender bites are super delicious. Get ready to grill one of the most popular street foods out of Puerto Rico… Pinchos De Pollo!!
The snuggly threaded chicken cubes are marinated in amazing island flavors and grilled to perfection, then slathered with BBQ sauce. Yes, very unique chicken kebabs!
20. Puerto Rican Picadillo
Picadillo is a classic, home-style, Latin American dish. There are many variations, but this is our favorite so far! Ground beef is flavored with all Latin seasonings and mixed in with bell peppers, olives and raisins. Sounds weird, but all the flavors just work wonderfully together. This is one of my favorite Caribbean recipes.
21. Tostones (AKA Patacones)
These crispy Latin tostones are a great alternative to your basic French fries. Easy… Yummy… Exotic! I bet ya, you cant stop at one. Grab some plantains next time in the market and make them in a zippy…
22. Jamaican Style Pepper Steak
This Jamaican Pepper Steak is a spin off of the popular Chinese dish, this time featuring tender beef and peppers braised in a flavorful and tangy sauce. Treat your friends with this yum Latin favorite.
23. Trinidadian Curry Chicken
This curry chicken from the Caribbean island country of Trinidad hits close to home. Curry powder and fresh herbs and aromatics in their green seasoning form the base of this super simple chicken affair.
24. Trinidadian Green Seasoning
Add some flavor to your food with this Caribbean staple. Green seasoning is the perfect addition to your stews and rices, and makes a great marinade for your meats and seafoods.
25. Jamaican Rice and Peas
Coconut-infused rice and gungo (pigeon) peas is all mixed with scallions, thyme, Scotch bonnet, and allspice. It is the perfect easy and complementary side dish to make for dinner tonight!
26. Cuban Mojo Pork
For all the Cuban food lovers, here is a very simple and delicious, yet very iconic Cuban dish, Mojo Pork!!
Rich and succulent tender shredded pork with amazing flavors created by citrus juice, plenty of garlic and some select herbs. All you are doing is making a quick Mojo Marinade and cooking the pork slow and low for hours, smothered in citrusy Mojo.
27. Jamaican Jerk Marinade
Hey, Mon! Add some island flair to your food with this famous Jamaican marinade! Make it mild or make it spicy, either way get ready for an explosion of flavor! That’s must if you are craving for some jerk chicken…
28. Cuban Mojo Marinade
This Cuban Mojo Marinade will add a Latin flair to your grilled and baked meats. Citrusy and garlicky, this exotic and refreshing marinade whips up in 10 minutes or less.
29. Homemade Sofrito
A key ingredient in many Latin cuisines. This sofrito is based on the Puerto Rican version. Makes a nice marinade as well! Make a big batch and you are ready for unlimited Latin meals.
Doubles are a Trinidadian street food staple. This doubles recipe features curried channa stuffed between two lightly fried baras (hence the name doubles!). Think chickpea sandwich with lots of flavor. A delicious combination that’s packed with flavor.
31. Keshi Yena (Aruban Meat Stuffed Cheese)
Keshi Yena is the National dish of the Dutch island of Aruba. Seasoned ground beef is encased in melty, gooey cheese. Easy to make and mild in flavor, this is a must try Caribbean dish.
32. Pastelon De Platano Maduro (Sweet Plantain Lasagna)
Lasagna with sweet plantains? Sure, this world is full of surprises when it comes to food and flavors. But a combination of sweet and salty ingredients surprisingly work extremely well. One of these days, give this Latin favorite try. Who knows, you might keep on making your lasagna this sweet and savory way…
33. Jamaican Callaloo
Jamaican Callaloo is a popular local staple green leafy vegetable, cooked with onion, garlic, tomatoes, thyme and Scotch bonnet pepper. Perfect healthy side dish for a tropical breakfast, lunch or dinner.
34. Easy Beef Empanada
These empanadas are crescent-shaped, savory pastries made of flaky pie crust and filled with warmly-spiced ground beef and vegetables. They are extremely popular in Caribbean and other Latin countries. Make a double or triple batch and freeze some for a future freezer meal!
Creamy caramel flan is a traditional Latin American dessert recipe. A rich custard topped with caramel sauce and fresh berries. Its silky and smooth texture is what makes this so delicious and irresistible! Who wouldn’t like to dig into this one?
36. Hummingbird Cake
Hummingbird cake is a Jamaican invention. It is an easy, sweet taste of the tropics with banana, pineapple, toasted pecans, and the best cream cheese frosting! Make this recipe for dessert today!
37. Jamaican Beef Patties
Jamaican beef patties, spicy flavorful beef stuffed in an amazing super easy buttery dough. They come together quickly and fly off the table in no time. Simply delicious!
38. Cuban Sandwich
Looking for a snack or easy lunch? Try this Cuban sandwich. Made with tender, mojo roasted pork, ham, cheese and pickles, this authentic Cuban Sandwich will have your mouth watering before it’s even assembled.
39. Rum Cake
This rum cake recipe is made from scratch. It has the most tender, moist crumb, and is drenched in rum flavor without being overpowering. A fantastic dessert that’s equally suitable for weekly family dinners, fancy parties, or holiday celebrations.
40. Conch Fritters
A spiced batter littered with fresh conch meat is deep fried until golden. These conch fritters are a little taste of the islands that are downright addicting!
41. Bahama Mama
A luscious blend of fruit juices and coconut rum will give you a tropical feeling no matter how far away are you from the beach. Bahama Mama is a sweet tropical cocktail that features coconut rum, orange juice, pineapple juice, a touch of grenadine, and dark rum.
This Mojito Recipe is simple, easy to make, and totally delicious. You will find yourself coming back to this recipe over and over again! So cool and so refreshing…
So my friends, now that you have learned so much about this wonderful island cuisine, how about trying some of these delicacies in your home?
Make some of the seasonings and marinades in bulk and keep that bottle ready in your refrigerator. All those picadillos and curriess or jerks are breeze then.
Bookmark or pin this post of great Caribbean recipes so you can keep coming back for new flavors…
See you next time!
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp allspice powder
- 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- ½ tsp nutmeg powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon powder
- Place all ingredients in a bowl. Mix thoroughly.
- Store in an airtight container.
- If you love your recipe, please leave a comment. I love hearing from you!
Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.
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