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Food in Colombia

The staples of Colombian cuisine is rice, meat, yuca, potato, arepa (a thick corn tortilla, eaten especially in the mountains) and plaintain. Throw in natural fruit juices of an amazing variety, and you have a meal.

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What do people eat in Colombia?

The staples of Colombian cuisine is rice, meat, yuca, potato,  arepa (a thick corn tortilla, eaten especially in the mountains) and plaintain. Throw in natural fruit juices of an amazing variety, and you have a meal. This starchy food fills you up, and it is not uncommon to be served two potatoes, a bed of rice, and a boiled plaintain together on the same plate.

This is a typical lunch meal in Colombia

The typical breakfast in Colombia includes eggs and/or caldo de costilla (a beef soup), bread or arepa and coffee or hot chocolate. Restaurants or places serving tourists might also offer natural fruit juice or fruit salad as well.

Lunch is the main meal of the day in Colombia. It usually comes with two courses. First, is a vegetable soup with a little meat thrown into it. Second, is meat or chicken with rice, and a side dish such as potato, yuca, or plaintain and sometimes a salad.

The dinner options in Colombia are mainly fast foods, leftovers, or eggs again. For a snack, it is common to head to a panaderia and drink a coffee and eat fresh sweet bread.

In all, Colombian food is generally bland, but if prepared well with fresh ingredients, it’s delicious.

Colombia has a lot of fresh and cheap fruits and vegetables. Most fruits are best juiced. Some popular ones include: mora, (a kind of tart blackberry), papaya, guanabana (a sweet white fruit), guayaba (guava), and lulo (tastes like a sweet/sour tomato eaten raw but juiced with sugar, tastes great). Green mangoes eaten with salt are also popular.

If you are eating out in restaurants, expect to pay around 5,000 pesos for breakfast, 5,000 to 7,000 for lunch, and 6,000 for a hamburger with fries for dinner.

Typical Colombian breakfast, arepa and eggs with coffee

More information about finding cheap food when traveling

Read more about Colombia

  • Travelogue entries about Colombia

Return to the Colombia Travel Guide

More Vagabond Journey.com Travel Guides

What did you eat when you traveled to Colombia? How much did it cost? Where did you find it? Where are the cheapest places to eat in Colombia? The best places? Submit your information below.


Filed under: Colombia, Food, South America

About the Author:

I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3691 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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  • Tony Logan March 12, 2014, 11:58 am

    Go to Colombia for the music and Mexico for the food.

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