The Gastronomical Guide To Nicaraguan Caribbean Coast

The Nicaraguan Caribbean Coast has a rich history, culture and, of course, cuisine. 


If you venture to the Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua from Managua, you will immediately notice a difference in culture, lifestyle and food. On a recent trip to Bluefields, Orinoco and Pearl Lagoon, I found that the cuisine on the Coast includes some twists on traditional Nicaraguan dishes and an abundance of seafood. Be sure to try these delectable items during your next visit to Región Autónoma del Atlántico Sur (R.A.A.S).

Pan de coco (Coconut bread):

While this may look like an everyday white bread, you are really in for a treat. Coconut bread is made with basic bread dough that is then enhanced by coconut milk. The result is deliciously soft and sweet bread that is great as a snack or as a side with any fish or seafood entrees. Be sure to bring some pan de coco on the next leg of your Nicaraguan adventure; you’ll be craving this delicacy in no time!


Gallo pinto con coco (Rice and beans with coconut):

Firstly, a trip to Nicaragua is not complete without trying gallo pinto. In fact, it is nearly impossible to come to Nicaragua and leave without having rice and beans with just about every meal. On the Caribbean coast, however, they spice up the regular rice and beans with coconut milk. As you may have guessed, the coconut tree abounds on the Coast and they really take advantage of the power of coconut milk to liven up any dish. Gallo pinto con coco has that little extra sweetness from the coconut milk that just takes the rice and beans to a whole other level.


This delectable seafood dish is the perfect lunch or dinner after a day of exploring the Coastal communities. Rondón usually includes a piece of fried fish, green plátano, yucca and a creamy sauce. In true coastal custom, the sauce is made from coconut milk. Rondón is a great dish because there is a good balance between the sauce and the drier starches (yucca and the plantain). Be sure to have a piece of coconut bread handy to soak up all the extra sauce!

The Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua has a rich history, culture and, of course, cuisine.  When you find yourself in the land of coconut trees, be sure to keep an eye out for pan de coco, gallo pinto con coco and rondón. On the other hand, I would advise you to avoid eating any turtle meat since they are endangered species. I would encourage tasting rondón with fish instead of turtle meat. Your next trip to Nicaragua should definitely include some stops on the Caribbean coast, not only to try the food but also to experience a truly unique and beautiful culture.

¡Que tengan buen provecho!

Maura Lewandowski

Maura is from Pittsburgh, PA and loved visiting Lisbon. When it comes to traveling, she's a planner. She does research before she arrives at the destination and makes sure she can fit in as much as possible.

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