Discovering Guatemalan Food and Recipes
Looking for something new and interesting to add to your weekly meal plan? Consider trying the unique flavors of Guatemalan cuisine. Drawing from both Mexican and Caribbean influences, Guatemalan food offers new tastes and smells you won’t have experienced before. Here you will learn more about the variety of dishes and flavors that make Guatemalan food so special, as well as find some recipes to start making it in your own kitchen.
What Makes Guatemalan Food Unique?
The traditional cuisine of Guatemala can trace its roots back to the Mayan civilization. This diverse country has also been influenced by its connection to the Caribbean, as well as other Central American countries. As a result, you’ll find dishes that combine Mexican, Caribbean and Mayan flavors for something truly unique.
The staples of Guatemalan food center around corn, beans and potatoes. These are typically served over rice, in tortillas or with bread. Although the dishes tend to be relatively simple in nature, what really sets them apart are the sauces and spices added to them. These sauces and spices vary from region to region and often include ingredients such as tomatoes, onions, garlic, cilantro and a variety of peppers.
Some Popular Guatemalan Dishes
In order to get a better idea of the traditional flavors in Guatemala, try a few of the most popular dishes. One of the most popular is Guatemalan Tamales. These are usually made with corn dough, stuffed with pork and vegetables, and wrapped in a corn husk. There is also Pepián, a stew made with chicken, pork, or beef and a variety of vegetables. Mozote is a soup made with fish, tomatoes, chilies and spices, while Mazamorra is a thick corn pudding that is often served with plantains.
Guatemala is also known for its amazing desserts. Chapín is a popular dish made with goat’s milk, spices, and sugar. Or try Bollo de Elote, a sweet roll made with corn, condensed milk, and cheese. Lastly, Arroz con Leche is an excellent dessert option made with rice, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Start Cooking Guatemalan Food Today
Ready to start experiencing the unique flavors of Guatemalan cuisine? Choose from the two recipes below and bring the tastes of Guatemala into your kitchen today.
Guatemalan Chicken in Pineapple
- 1 pound boneless chicken thighs
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 jalapeño pepper, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (14 ounce) can crushed pineapple
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- In a small bowl, combine cumin, salt and pepper. Rub the spice mixture onto the chicken.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until lightly browned and cooked through, about 6 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a plate.
- Add the onion, jalapeño, and garlic to the skillet and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the pineapple and its juice, stirring to combine.
- Return the chicken to the skillet and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the top with cilantro before serving.
- 2 pounds pork shoulder roast
- 1 onion, quartered
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup water
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