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    The 40 BEST Latin Foods

    Latin food… So versatile from country to country, island to island. Though you will find many similarities, you don’t want to miss out on the huge variety.

    That’s why we have compiled this list of amazing Latin Recipes for you to try.

    From the various tacos and salsa from Mexico, to the stews and roasts of the Caribbean islands, all the way down to our favorite Pastel de Choclo all the way from Chile, you’ll find so many amazing Latin food here.

    Cook your way through all of these delightful Latin American Recipes, and relish in the range of flavors!

    The best Latin recipes (40 great Latin foods)

    The Best Latin Recipes:

    1. Birria Tacos

    These are EPIC tacos… Birria Tacos!!! This birria taco recipe is made with tender and flavorful birria beef, which is loaded into broth-dipped corn tortillas with cheese, fried until crispy, then dunked in birria broth or consommé for a delicious finish.

    Hmmm… these dunking tacos. I bet once you try them, you will come back to these again and again.

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    2. Pastel de Choclo

    This is an amazing Latin food recipe..Pastel de Choclo, a Chilean beef and corn casserole.

    It’s an exotic and super delicious variation on Shepherd’s Pie.

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    3. Dominican Pollo Guisado (Chicken Stew)

    Pollo Guisado, the beloved chicken dish that everybody from Latin Caribbean islands grew up on.

    This colorful, fall off the bone chicken is caramelized first and then braised in a beautiful sauce. Atop a bed of rice, this is ultimate bliss for many people! Try it, you will love the simplicity of this most flavorful and yum chicken stew.

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    4. Pernil (Puerto Rican Roast Pork)

    Pernil is the traditional centerpiece on Puerto Rican Christmas spreads, though variations are also found throughout the Caribbean.

    A whole pork shoulder is marinated in garlic, herbs and other great Latin seasonings overnight, then, it’s slow roasted for hours until the meat is fall off the bone tender, and the skin is amazingly crispy and delicious.

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    5. Caldo de Res

    Melt in your mouth beef simmered for hours in a beautifully flavored, yet delicately tasty, bone broth with loads of varied colorful vegetables cooked to perfection… served in your biggest available bowl to accommodate all the goodies.

    That’s, my friends, is Caldo de Res. One sip and you are going to crave this pot of Caldo every now and then…

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    6. Picadillo

    Picadillo is a perfect weeknight meal. It is a very traditional home-style dish cooked in many Latin American countries

    Basically, it is a well seasoned ground meat mixture, and it is very versatile.

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    7. Ropa Vieja (Cuba’s National Dish)

    Ropa Vieja is a TRUE Cuban Classic!! Beloved throughout the generations, this rustic and humble Latin dish is very popular not only in Cuba, but many of its neighboring Spanish speaking countries.

    Tender and juicy beef in authentic tomato-wine sauce along with veggies is cooked slow and low for hours till it’s shredded easily by the mere touch of a fork.

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    8. Bistec Encebollado (Steak & Onions)

    Bistec Encebollado, or steak and onions, is one of the most popular dinners in many Latin countries.

    It’s pure Latin comfort food. Serve it with rice along with tostones and black beans.

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    9. Birria (Mexican Beef Stew)

    Beef Birria is an amazingly flavorful Mexican stew with a rich chili pepper infused consommé. Just wait till you try the meat in tacos…

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    10. Crock Pot Barbacoa Pork

    This is Pure Pork Awsomeness! Garlicky, super moist, super tender, super juicy…

    This Barbacoa Style Pork is braised low and slow, simmering for hours in some serious Latin flavors. And it’s so versatile!

    It’s great for making tacos, burritos and salads.

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    11. Peruvian Chicken (Pollo a la Brasa)

    This roasted chicken is a total flavor Bomb! Tender, juicy, beautifully crisped up chicken loaded with awesome bold, delicious flavors. This isn’t your regular rotisserie chicken. Just imagine 10 times more flavorful.

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    12.Asopao de Camarones (Shrimp and Rice Soup)

    Asopao de Camarones… A tasty, flavor bomb of Shrimp and Rice Soup. Soup that is thick and hearty, almost like a stew. 

    This one is jam packed with all the Latin flavors of adobo, sofrito and sazon, the trinity of typical Puerto Rican cuisine.

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    13. Sancocho (Latin Beef & Vegetable Stew)

    This Latin 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.

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    14. Pollo Asado

    This Pollo Asado recipe is a must try. Chicken is marinated in a blend of citrus juice and plenty of great Latin flavors, giving you tender, juicy, delicious results.

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    15. Arroz con Pollo

    Arroz con Pollo, meaning rice with chicken, is a popular staple in Caribbean kitchens. There are plenty of variations, but this one made using authentic Puerto Rico seasonings is our favorite.

    This flavorful and hearty Arroz con Pollo recipe is a great family meal.

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    16. 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.

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    17. Asopao de Pollo (Puerto Rican Chicken Stew)

    Asopao de Pollo (Puerto Rican Chicken Stew) is a comfy cozy soup with tons of amazing flavors. It is Puerto Rico’s national soup.

    It’s a one pot meal with protein, rice and plenty of veggies. Perfect meal for a cold winter night, and absolute comfort food for your loved ones.

    Get the Recipe: Asopao de Pollo

    18. Moqueca

    Now, this one is special… Moqueca is a marvelously tasty Brazilian seafood stew, with a decadent coconut milk base.

    Simple ingredients like tomatoes, peppers and pantry staple seasonings, along with a squeeze of lime at the end, all come together to create magic.

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    19. Chile Verde

    Chile Verde – Melt in your mouth tender pork chunks in a flavorful, spicy tomatillo sauce. It’s a great winter warmer, but it’s so good you’ll want it all year long!

    And it requires next to no effort. After some quick prep, it’s one of those set it and forget it meals.

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    20. 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.

    Along with pernil (roasted pork), this is the national dish of Puerto Rico. It’s such a great side dish to have in your repertoire, as it goes well with so many things.

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    21. Baja Fish Tacos

    These Baja Fish Tacos are one of our new favorite handheld meals. Soft tortillas packed full of beer battered fish, pico de gallo, avocado and chipotle mayo. Serious YUM!

    They’re a fun weekend meal, or a great dish to serve to guests. And you can have your taco bar on the table in about 20 minutes.

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    22. Tostones (AKA Patacones)

    These famously twice-fried green plantain discs are crunchy crisp on the outside with a softer inside.

    All you need is a sprinkling of sea salt on top and stack a heap of them along with some dipping sauce for unlimited snacking. Great party appetizer contender!!

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    23. Carne Picada (Best Taco / Burrito Meat)

    This recipe for Carne Picada meat is a perfect filling for tacos, burritos, burrito bowls, and so much more! It’s a great easy weeknight dinner when you crave Tex-Mex flavors.

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    24. Albondigas Soup (Mexican Meatball Soup)

    Now this is not your regular soup. Every sip is loaded with delicious, bold Mexican flavors. This albondigas soup is a comfort pot of beef and rice meatballs simmered with plenty of veggies like potatoes, carrots and zucchini.

    The broth is a rich tomato base with Mexican staple spices. Try this Mexican soup for some extra punch in your soup bowl.

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    25. Tacos Gobernador

    Tacos Gobernador, aka Governor’s Tacos!! Have you ever bite into these crazy tasty shrimp tacos? They are irresistibly delicious! They are irresistibly delicious and messy to start with.

    They are kind of a cross between a taco and quesadilla, with crunchy inviting bites with ton of melty cheese.

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    26. Flank Steak Fajitas

    Fajitas are always a fun family meal. These flank steak fajitas are the perfect easy option when that Mexican food craving hits.

    Perfectly marinated, melt in your mouth tender beef strips with colorful peppers. You’re in for an awesome tasty meal with this one!

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    27. Guasacaca (Venezuelan Guacamole)

    Guasacaca! Meet guacamole’s tangier, herbier cousin. Venezuelans love this avocado based condiment and now you can too!

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    28. Pico de Gallo

    Easy, fresh and delicious. This Pico de Gallo whips up in 10 minutes and is great with chips as an appetizer, or as a condiment to many of your favorite Mexican dishes. Try this fresh pico next time you have a get together.

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    29. Homemade Sofrito

    Sofrito is the must have flavor enhancer to keep on hand for any Puerto Rican dish.

    This luscious green base can create wonders in your kitchen, believe me when I say that. Picadillo, pollo guisado, empanadas… those Latin favorites are just around the corner when you have this in your repertoire.

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    30. Mango Salsa

    You gotta try mango salsa in the summer time when you see some juicy, ripe mangoes. All you doing is chopping and mixing a few ingredients. Life can’t get easier than that… right?

    Great for get togethers and potlucks alongside plenty of tortilla chips. Or use it as topping for tacos or over baked chicken or fish like our baked salmon with mango salsa.

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    31. Habichuelas Guisadas (Puerto Rican Stewed Beans)

    This Habichuelas Guisadas (Puerto Rican Stewed Beans) are the tastiest beans you will ever eat, seasoned with tomato, sofrito, sazon and adobo.

    Once you try your beans the Puerto Rican way, you may never eat them any other way again…

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    32. Easy Cheesy Taco Skillet

    This quick & easy taco skillet is loaded with flavors and topped with melty cheese. It’s a great weeknight meal or Game Day crowd pleaser.

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    33. Carne Guisada

    Let me give you the biggest flavor bomb out of the Caribbean, Carne Guisada, Puerto Rican style.

    So much flavor in every single tender meat chunk. Why not? There is plenty of their famous flavor enhancers like sofrito, Sazon, adobo and olives. One of our favorite Latin recipes.

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    34. Ground Beef Tacos

    Taco, Taco! How many can you have at one time? These ground beef tacos are a fun, super easy dinner the whole family will love. You won’t even want to wait till Tuesday!

    Perfectly seasoned ground beef wrapped in soft tortillas with all your favorite fixings. Everyone will be asking for these great tacos again and again.

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    35. Taco Casserole

    Transform your favorite fun handheld meal into cozy comfort food with this easy Taco Casserole recipe!

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    36. Refried Beans

    Take your Mexican night up a notch with this easy Refried Beans recipe! They are sooo much better than the canned stuff.

    With just a few simple ingredients, and minimal effort, you can have restaurant quality refried beans to serve alongside your tacos, or any of your favorite Mexican dishes.

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    37. Pinchos de Pollo (Puerto Rican Chicken Skewers)

    Meet your new favorite summer grilling recipe!

    Pinchos De Pollo are chicken skewers seasoned with Puerto Rican spices and then grilled to perfection. You’ll want to have these all summer long.

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    38. Salsa Verde (Tomatillo Sauce)

    Ready for a fresh new salsa to spice up your kitchen? This Salsa Verde, or tomatillo sauce, is the super simple and super versatile sauce you need!

    This is the one you’ll want to slather all over your tacos, burritos, enchiladas and even burgers. Plus, you can use it as a base for some awesome dishes.

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    39. Salsa Taquera (Chili de Árbol Salsa)

    If you like HOT, this classic Salsa Taquera is for you. Fiery árbol chilis and a few other simple ingredients blend together for the ultimate taco experience!

    This one is what you would encounter in authentic Mexican Taquerias along with their different assortments of tacos.

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    40. Chili Lime Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa

    Sweet and savory, these tacos are so tasty you will want to go back for seconds, maybe thirds! And they are so quick, they just might become a weeknight staple.

    Whenever you see a mango, think about these colorful tacos!

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    41. Taco Soup 

    Who can really resist loaded Taco Soup on any day? Here is the best and easiest Taco Soup Recipe ever. 

    This hearty ground beef soup is perfectly seasoned with easy homemade taco seasoning, and has all the right Tex-Mex flavors along with veggies, corn and beans. In the end, all you need to do is make it irresistible by simply topping it with creamy avocado, some cilantro, jalapeño, tortilla strips and lots of shredded cheese.

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    42. Mexican Rice Casserole

    Yes, you can call this dish Taco Casserole or Mexican Rice Casserole or Taco Tuesday Casserole… 

    However you address it, it’s cheesy and gooey, jam packed with all the Mexican staples like corn, salsa, black beans and plenty of their earthy spices.

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    43. Cilantro Lime Rice (Chipotle Rice Recipe)

    This Chipotle copycat Cilantro Lime Rice is a super easy side dish that will go great with so many of your favorite mains.

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    44. Carne Mechada

    Carne Mechada is at the very heart of Venezuelan cuisine. It’s a perfect result of slow cooked shredded meat, cooked once again with aromatic and flavorful Venezuelan sofrito. 

    This pulled meat recipe is a real flavor bomb. Carne Mechada proudly represents the main and integral feature of their national dish – Pabellón Criollo, along with beans, rice and ripe plantains.

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    45. Caldo de Pollo 

    This Caldo de Pollo, or Mexican Chicken Soup, is brimming with simple flavors and loaded with fresh veggies. It’s great any time of the year!

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    46. Cuban Mojo Pork

    This Cuban Mojo Pork recipe is so tasty thanks to the amazing marinade, and is super tender after it cooks low and slow in your crockpot!

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    47. Surf and Turf Nachos

    Put a fun spin on a classic restaurant favorite. These Surf and Turf Nachos are topped with juicy tender steak and flavorful shrimp and they whip up quick and easy.

    These super delicious nachos make a perfect appetizer for game night or family get-togethers, which everyone will enjoy.

    Get the Recipe

    What an amazing assortment of delicious Latin recipes. They look so good, it’s hard to decide what to cook first!

    Save or pin this collection of great recipes so you always know where to find it. And be sure to subscribe to GypsyPlate, we’re always cooking up new easy recipes for you!

    Check out these other great recipe collections!
    Mediterranean Recipes
    Asian Recipes
    Southern Recipes
    Greek Recipes
    French Recipes
    British Recipes
    Mexican Recipes
    Thai Recipes
    American Recipes

    Featured image for Latin recipes post.

    The 40 BEST Latin Foods

    This collection of great Latin Recipes shows what a huge variety of dishes there are among Latin American countries. For a quick start, you whip up this easy pico de gallo:


    • 4 large ripe red tomatoes
    • 1 small white onion
    • 1 medium jalapeño or serrano, seeds and fibers removed.
    • 1/2 cup cilantro
    • 2 Tbsp lime juice
    • Salt to taste


      1. Chop onions, tomatoes, cilantro and jalepeño. (The jalepeño should be finely chopped).Mix all ingredients in bowl.
      2. Let rest for 30 minutes (optional).
      3. Taste and adjust.

      Did you make this recipe?

      Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

      Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

      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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