We usually try to avoid generalizations, but here we make an exception. Practically every Dominican will have eaten some or all of these dishes. We bring you the foods that unite all Dominicans: The Dominican dishes that almost every Dominican has tried in their lifetime.
There are some Dominican recipes in our collection that are not familiar to all Dominicans, either because they are mainly eaten in specific parts of the country or because they are no longer so common and have been forgotten over time.
These are the exceptions to the rule: These are some of the most common traditional dishes in the Dominican Republic that practically every Dominican will have tried.
Dominican plantain dishes
Plantains are one of the staples of the Dominican diet, in common with our neighboring islands of Puerto Rico and Cuba and other parts of Latin America and the Caribbean.
- Tostones are fried green plantains eaten as a side dish or snack.
- Fritos maduros are fried ripe plantains served interchangeably with tostones.
- Mangú, boiled green plantain mash, is the most popular dish for breakfast, served with fried salami, fried eggs, and fried cheese, known as Los tres golpes, the three beats.
Dominican meat dishes
Unless you were raised vegetarian or vegan, which is still fairly uncommon in the Dominican Republic, you will have certainly eaten most of the following dishes as part of La Bandera Dominicana (our national lunch meal). As well as chicken, beef, and pork, goat meat is also much loved by Dominicans. The dish called chivo guisado is made with goats that graze on wild oregano.
Dominican dishes with chicken
- Pollo guisado - a braised chicken dish that is part of the daily lunch known as la Bandera.
- Pica pollo - Dominican fried chicken, a favorite street food option.
Dominican pork dishes
- Puerco asado - roast pork, sold from roadside stops and part of the festive Christmas eve dinner. Also known as lechon asado and pernil.
- Chicharrones or chicharron de cerdo - fried pork rinds, another popular street food that is also a tasty addition to several dishes.
Dominican beef dishes
Dominican vegetable dishes
These dishes can be served as a starter, a side dish, or as a main vegetarian dish with rice and beans.
Dominican fish dishes
- Pescado con coco, fish in coconut milk sauce, a mix of fresh fish, vegetables, and herbs in a hearty sauce with all the spices and tastes that we love, and one sure Dominican seafood dish favorite.
- Pescado frito - fried fish - is the kind of dish that you can order almost anywhere in the Dominican Republic. It is an essential component of a beach day and a very popular street food
Dominican pasta dishes
- Espaguetis a la Dominicana is a dish made with ingredients like onions, garlic, tomatoes, peppers, and salami, with a singularly Dominican taste.
- Ensalada de coditos (macaroni salad) is another favorite. Other less popular Dominican pasta dishes include our own take on lasagna and pastelon de espagueti.
Dominican rice dishes
- Locrio is a rice pilaf that may be related to Spanish paella or African jollof rice. The most common locrio is prepared with chicken, but it can also be made with pork, longaniza sausage, shrimp, sardines, herring, pork chop, or salami.
- Moro is a simple rice and beans recipe combined into a one-pot dish that is part of the gastronomic heritage of most of the Caribbean, including our country. It can be made with red or black beans, guandules (pigeon peas), and vegetables like sweetcorn. Some versions also include meat.
- Concon is the crust of tasty, crunchy, and crispy rice formed at the bottom of the pot when you cook rice Dominican-style.
Dominican dessert dishes
- Habichuelas con dulce, sweet beans, one of the classics of Dominican cuisine, is made with beans, milk, raisins, and spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Some versions also include sweet potato. This dessert is especially popular during Lent and Easter.
- Majarete is a traditional corn pudding made with milk and spices. This Dominican dessert is creamy, smooth, and delectable. This is why we all love it.
Do you agree? What other dishes do you think nearly every Dominican has eaten? Let us know in the comments!
The main dish in the Dominican Republic is the daily lunch meal, known as la Bandera Dominicana which means the Dominican Flag. It consists of staples like white rice, red kidney beans, and meat, which can be either beef, chicken, pork or sometimes fish. It is usually accompanied by a salad and tostones (fried green plantains) or avocado. Red beans are sometimes replaced by black beans or guandules, pigeon peas. This is the ultimate traditional Dominican food.
Apart from La Bandera, popular dishes include sancocho, a tasty stew made with several types of meat and root vegetables, such as yuca and yautía. Other top Dominican dishes include mangú, boiled green plantain mash, pescado con coco, and fried chicken.
Published Nov 12, 2022, revised