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Typical food in Costa Rica.

gallo pinto

There are foods that go straight to the heart, and in Costa Rica they prepare some of the best. It’s inevitable to come and not fall in love with the variety of flavors they offer. The majority of Costa Rican dishes are hearty and healthy, containing balanced amounts of healthy fats, carbohydrates and proteins.

Costa Rica is divided into 7 provinces, each one of them, has wonderful attractions, lovely beaches, national parks and impressive volcanoes, but each province is also well known for having great food.

San Jose

gallo pinto

As the Capital of Costa Rica, San Jose is located in the center of the country, and we can say that one of the star dishes is the well-known «casado» (married), this dish containing rice, beans, a protein, salad, picadillo and sweet plantain, served with a natural drink of sourguava or tamarind. One of the most famous places to eat a very good casado is the Mercado Central.


The second province of Costa Rica, located 16 km from San Jose, a very good dish to try every time you visit Alajuela is beans with pork, hopefully served with a good chilera (Spicy fermented vegetables wth hot pepper), and in the afternoon you can have coffee with a homemade tamal.


Cartago is an excellent place to live, the perfect combination of nature and cold weather, which is complemented in an incredible way when we sit at the table to taste a good beef soup, or a good “pozol”, in case you don’t know what pozol is, the pozol is cooked corn marinated in a pork broth, with bits of the same pork meat, a great idea when we need to get warm.


The famous “City of the flowers”, the home of the Chifrijo, In a bowl, you’ll be served a layer of white rice and a layer of beans, called “cubaces,” which are bigger than the ones used in Gallo Pinto. These are prepared ahead of time in a stew, along with pork ribs and spices. Please don’t forget to combine it with a cold beer.


Now it’s time to talk about the opposite side of Cartago, since Puntarenas has very hot weather, the perfect plan is to go to Puntarenas and enjoy a whole fish with patacones, or you can also enjoy a fresh ceviche, in this area, seafood is usually the main dish.


Limon has the two largest and most important seaports in Costa Rica, it’s a province full of unique culture, with very happy people, but how not to be happy eating a rondon? Randon is a stew or soup made with fish, shrimps, green plantains and spices like curry and hot pepper, usually served with rice or patacones. We shouldn’t leave Limon without eating a dish like this first.


This is one of the most popular provinces in Costa Rica, it’s considered a tropical paradise and its food is incredible as well. Many of the dishes you can find in Guanacaste, are made of corn in different varieties. but we must mention that one of the most famous dishes is the corn rice, prepared with corn and chicken broth, served with green plantains.

However, there is one dish that is extremely famous throughout Costa Rica, this meal is gallo pinto, gallo pinto is a combination of rice and beans, usually eaten for breakfast, with fried or scrambled eggs, sour cream and tortillas, for many people it’s the food of the gods.

Author: Hefsy Guerrero, Nature Group Costa Rica.