Top 10 Street Food You Must Try In Cuba

street food in cuba
| 4 min read

Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean Sea and is an excellent holiday destination. It is a country with a rich past of revolution which is still fresh in the minds of its residents. There are several things to see and do in this region – including tours of museums, sugar plantations, and more. Its architectural masterpieces are mesmerizing, as well. Nature’s beauty is on full display in this location as it is home to beautiful beaches, lush countrysides, and more. If you plan on saving money, or you want to blend well with the people, eating like a local is a way to go. To begin your fun-filled adventure, scroll down to see our list of some of the best street food you must try in Cuba.

1. Tostones (plantain dish)

Tostones - Arnold Gatilao
Source: Photo by user Arnold Gatilao used under CC BY 2.0

As you travel to Cuba, one of the best ways to feel like you are a part of the country is by eating street food. One of the famous delicacies on offer is tostones. It’s a delicious dish that has plantains as the main component. For this dish, the plantains are cut into thin strips and fried until they are crispy. They are eaten like potato chips and come complete with a dip. These twice-fried plantain slices are delicious and are easy to snack on.

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2. Sandwich de huevo (egg sandwich)

Egg salad sandwich
Source: Photo by user jill, jellidonut.... used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Sandwich de huevo is a Cuban egg sandwich. This dish is hugely popular in the eateries and restaurants that line the streets of Cuba. The traditional ingredients of this sandwich are hard-boiled eggs, mayonnaise, salt, lettuce leaves, pepper, Dijon mustard, cheddar cheese, and white bread. Easy and straightforward to prepare, these sandwiches are excellent breakfast food, especially when you are in a hurry. They are also cheap and fun to enjoy with your group or family.

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3. Papa rellena (stuffed potato ball)

Papas rellenas
Source: Photo by user E4024 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

The fried stuffed potato balls, papa rellena, are a street food favorite. Cubans have a partiality for anything and everything deep-fried, and these balls are no exception. They are excellent for snacks, appetizers, or even for parties. Portions are surprisingly filling. You can enjoy it as your main lunch, a side dish, or just a hand-held snack. Preparation is rather simple, as the balls are deep-fried until they turn golden. They are then dried on paper towels before eating.

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4. Pan con tortilla (sandwich)

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Pan con tortilla is a rich Cuban street food that comes stuffed with many ingredients for a flavorful and nutritious experience. It consists of eggs, smoked ham, onions, mozzarella cheese, and potato sticks. All these are then served on bread. Try this simple sandwich and enjoy an authentic Cuban experience. Since the ingredients are commonplace, you can even make it from the comforts of your home. However, it might be more fun eating it as you enjoy a view from the window of a Cuban street restaurant.

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5. Croqueta (ham croquettes)

Croquetas Caseras (7068664101)
Source: Photo by user Jonathan Pincas used under CC BY 2.0

These croquetas are simple to make and are an excellent way to get your Cuban street food fix. It can be stored in a freezer and reheated later, and still retain its rich taste. A staple in many Cuban homes, it can be enjoyed in the morning, lunch, or evening. To make these delicious snacks, you will need ham, cheese, onion, butter, oil, flour, seasonings, and milk. The ham is ground, and everything is whisked together.

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6. Churros

Source: Pexels

When churros come up during conversation, most folks tend to think of the European churros. Those churros, especially ones found in the eateries of Barcelona and Madrid in Spain, usually come with thick, rich dipping chocolate. The Cuban churros come not with a chocolate dip but with heaps of sugar and cinnamon. It is a coated deep-fried pastry - a crisp and delicious snack. It smells incredible and tastes even better. You will love the cinnamon and sweet combination, just like the many tourists and locals that can’t get enough of the snack.

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7. Pizza Hawaiana

Pizza Hawaii Special på Pizzeria Papillon i Sala 1343
Source: Photo by user Gunnar Creutz used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Pineapple toppings on pizza is a questionable combination for many folks, but that may be because they haven’t tried the Cuban variety. Putting pineapple on pizza is a big deal here and that is what they call pizza Hawaiana. For people that love savory food with a touch of sweetness, this treat might be the perfect dish. The pizza is made thin and sturdy so you can fold slices conveniently and eat them as you would eat your tacos. It is filling and delicious. If you have never tried pineapple on pizza, then this Cuban version is an excellent way to introduce your palate to the savory-sweet taste.

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8. Pan con lechon (roast pork sandwich)

coppelia pan con lechon
Source: Photo by Flickr user Krista used under CC BY 2.0

Pan con lechon is a staple meal in Cuba and it translates to bread with pork. It can be prepared in different ways but a popular method is making it with leftover roast pork. It is a simple yet delicious sandwich. There are only four ingredients but they come together in an excellent snack. The bread for the sandwich is a typical Cuban bread made with lard. Before it is pressed, it is buttered on all sides. The main ingredient of the dish is roast pork and it can either be baked or barbecued before it is added to the sandwich. To be fully enjoyed, mojo sauce and onions are added for some zing.

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9. Hamburguesa de cerdo (pork burger)

Ven y disfruta nuestra rica hamburguesa de ress + cerdo Gourmet con Tocineta y queso  #Regrann
Source: Photo by Flickr user nelson suarez used under CC BY-SA 2.0

These pork burgers are pretty cheap, but don’t be deceived; they are creamy and delicious. These burgers can be served with a ring of pineapple for more variety. Some folks prefer to have them with cream cheese and strawberry marmalade. Such combinations make it an excellent street food you must try before leaving Cuba.

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10. Frituras de malanga (malanga fritters)

Fritura de malanga
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user El Mono Español used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Malanga is a brown root vegetable that is common in tropical areas, including Cuba. To prepare frituras de malanga, the root crop is ground into a paste and combined with flour. Then ground malanga and flour mixture is mixed with egg, salt, and cilantro. It is deep-fried until it turns golden brown. The excess oil is then removed by drying on paper towels.

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Try some unique gastronomic treats

Eating street food is an excellent way to cut down costs and it offers you a grand opportunity to get close to the locals. While street food might be cheap, it doesn’t mean it is poor-quality. They are also perfect for sharing with your traveling companions. Enjoy your getaway with some of these street foods you must try in Cuba.

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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Ibrahim is a passionate writer with a keen interest in traveling. He not only travels to discover the world but also himself. And when it comes to writing, Ibrahim loves to keep it simple with a...Read more

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