Food in Chile

Food in Chile

Chile Rellenos

Chile Rellenos

Food in Chile presents you with a diverse array of mouth-watering dishes. Spanish influences mixed with local Chilean ingredients and regional specialties create delicious and flavorful meals. Since you will be staying with a local host family, most of your meals will be cooked at home, using the most traditional Chilean ingredients and styles. Whether you are having a home-cooked dinner, or eating out at a small local restaurant, one thing is for sure: you will never be bored with the food in Chile!

Chilean cooking is based around a few important ingredients. Potatoes, Maize, Olives, and Quinoa are all important parts of Chilean food. Because of Chile’s geography, with its narrow width and a nearly 3,000-mile-long coastline, seafood plays an important part in Chilean food. Squid, salmon, codfish, eel, shrimp, clams, crabs, and lobsters are among the fresh and delicious seafood found in abundance in Chilean cooking.

Even if you’re not into seafood, don’t worry—there are plenty of options with chicken, pork, lamb, or beef to suit your palate. Seafood is more commonly eaten at restaurants than in homes, too, so you can expect your home-cooked meals to be simpler and to involve more meats and vegetables.

Top Chilean Foods:

Hallullas These are a small, round, biscuit-like bread.  Rich and flaky, they are often eaten alone, although they are also perfect for Chilean sandwiches.

Marraqueta This is one of the staples of the Chilean diet.  Marraqueta bread is crisp and fairly simple, making it perfect to use for sandwiches, toast, or to eat with soup or a meal.

Pastel de Choclo This popular dish is a casserole made primarily with beef and corn.  Onions, raisins, olives, or chicken may also be added to create different variations on this common dish.

Pollo Arvejado  In this dish, chicken is stewed with carrots and peas, in chicken broth and white wine.  Typically served with rice or potatoes, this dish is a popular home-cooked meal.

Sopaipilla Made with flour and pumpkin, this type of bread is sweet, and typically comes in a flat, circular form.  They can easily be found at street-side stands, and make for a delicious snack or dessert.

Manjar  Sweet and creamy, this popular milk-based substance is used either as a spread, as a topping for desserts, or as a filling for pastries.

Arroz con Leche  This sweet pudding is mainly made of rice and milk, and is served as a dessert.

Chilean Wine  Grapevines were first introduced to Chile by the Spanish conquistadors in the 16th century.  Since then, vin yards and wine-making have grown into an important part of Chilean culture and economics.  Chilean wines are famous all over the world.

Chile’s vinyards are all located within an 800 mile stretch of land.  The relatively stable, Mediterranean climate of this region leads to reliably flavorful, inexpensive wines rich in antioxidants and resveratrol.

This close to the source of Chile’s world-renowned vinyards, you can get delicious, high quality wine and wine-based drinks at a fraction of the prices that you’d pay outside of Chile.

Costs of Dining Out in Chile

Although you will have most of your meals provided to you by your host family, you will still want to try the local restaurants on occasion.  Be aware, though, that this isn’t cheap!  The cost of a simple, one-person meal out in Chile can be anywhere from $8.00 to $15.00.  A combo meal at a fast food restaurant such as McDonalds will run you around $6.00.

southern barbarian chile mint beef

Southern Barbarian Chile Mint Beef

Go back to our Chile Country Guide page.

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