Ecuador is a humble nation with very diverse food. The geography of the country defines what people eat in different parts of it. In the Andes, Ecuadorian food is full of meat, especially pork and root vegetables like yuca.
On the coast, it’s obvious to have seafood with coconut milk and rice. But in the Amazon... well you need to try it yourself. It is my favorite and very delicious.
Llapingachos: fried stuffed potato patties
Llapingachos are one of Ecuador’s most popular dishes. They are fried potato omelets filled with cheese, fried on a hot grill until crispy and usually served with a fried egg, avocado, meat, and peanut sauce.
Fried green bananas, patacones or also known as tostones in much of Central America.
Patacones are used as the main carbohydrate along the coast of Ecuador. In some places, they are sliced or smashed and then fried.
Locro de papa: Ecuadorian potato soup
Locro de papa is a potato cream-soup with cheese, served with avocado and cooked with garlic, onions, achiote (annatto) powder and cilantro.
It is especially popular in the Andes highlands of Ecuador.
In Quechua language word, luqru, means stew, and papa means potato in Spanish
One of the luxuries of the Amazon region that is not for everyone. Chontacuro is a large beetle larva, and many eat them raw and wriggling.
They are often a little more palatable to guests toasted on skewers, with a strong but pleasant flavor.
Uchumanga is a stew commonly eaten in the Amazon region of Ecuador. Like many coastal dishes, it is very versatile and can include whichever river fish has been caught by the fishermen. This soup has no waste as the fish is cooked with animal intestines and stewed.
Cuy asado (Roasted Guinea Pig)
One of the dishes that you must try is a delicious roasted guinea pig. Guinea pig, also known as “conejillo de indias” or “cobaya”, is a meat that is well known in Andean countries.
Usually, cuy is served with potatoes or corn, salsa, and chile.
Mote pillo (Hominy and scrambled eggs)
Mote pillo is a fabulous dish in Ecuadorian cuisine and it is made with mote (cooked mature corn) and egg.
Mote con Chicharron
This version of mote is similar. It is boiled and served with pork.
Together they make for a wonderful and tasty meal that really works with the zing of the pork rinds. You can find mote con chicharron in markets and from street vendors.
These blood sausages are a quick snack or can be part of a meal.
Morcilla is found in many barbecues and fast food places in Ecuador, where rice and vegetables are added to pig’s blood to make for a tasty and meaty meal.
Canelazo: the legendary Ecuadorian cocktail
Canelazo is a spiced hot drink from the highlands in Ecuador. It’s similar to mulled wine but with a richer flavor. A typical canelazo contains cinnamon, sugar, naranjilla (Ecuadorian citrus fruit) and puntas.
Ceviche de camarón (raw shrimp cocktail)
Shrimp ceviche is one of the most traditional dishes in Latin America and Ecuador, especially on the coast of the country. It is also served with conch, fish and other seafood. Though seafood ceviche is the most in-demand, there are some that prepare them with beans, palm hearts, mushrooms, among other things, with the hope of turning it into a great vegetarian option.
Empanada de viento: giant fluffy pies
Empanadas are popular throughout Latin America
The Ecuadorian empanada de viento is made with regular dough, filled with cheese and served with sugar sprinkled on top. Other than the cheese, they are empty inside, just like the wind: viento.
And they’re HUGE!
Seco de Chivo
This goat stew is an excellent dish and is made with onions, green peppers, tomatoes and sometimes with tart fruit juice. If you’ve never tried goat meat before this is the time to try it.
Bolones de verde (stuffed green plantain dumplings)
You can’t miss those delicious bolón de verde whether it is filled with cheese, chicharron (deep fried pork), or both. The bolón de verde is made with green bananas that are cooked and smashed until they reach a dough, which can be filled with cheese, fried pork, among other things.
Encebollado (Albacore vegetable soup)
Encebollado is a meal that is commonly served to ease a hangover and is also called chuchaqui in Ecuador. Encebollado is a fish-based (albacore) broth, which also contains yuca, tomato, onion, pepper, and other ingredients. This plate tends to be served with popcorn, chifles (thin strips of fried green plantain), tostado (toasted corn) or bread.
They look like ice cream that never melts. Espumillas are sold in the street corners and are not ice cream but a meringue foam that is flavored with fruit like guava then topped with syrup and sprinkles.