Breakfast in Latin America varies immensely between countries and also regions. You’re not going to, for example, find the same breakfast in the Andes to that which you will find on the coast, even in the same country. Below is just an example of some of the best things you can start you day on in each country.
Argentina – Medialunas
Argentinians, like many parts of Europe, prefer something small and sweet for breakfast. Medialunas are much like croissants, buttery crescent-shaped pastries that are perfect when smothered in rich dulce de leche and served with milky coffee.
Chile – Tostada con manjar
In Chile, the humble breakfast is simple fare. Typically Chileans will have tostadas covered with jam or caramel manjar.
Brazil – Bolo de Laranjá and tropical fruits
Brazilians have a wide variety of breakfast foods. Delicious exotic fruits are always on offer but it may surprise you to know that cake is often eaten in the morning. An orange cake called Bolo de Laranjá is delicious and one of the most common.
Bolivia – Salteñas
Salteñas are basically smaller versions of their Argentine cousin, the empanada. Delicious baked pastries filled with a beef, pork or chicken and sometimes vegetables like peas. Vendors start selling these tasty morsels at 7am and they can quickly sell out.
Peru – Ceviche
The classic Peruvian dish of ceviche is popular on the coast. A variety of raw fish marinated in lime and other citrus juices, chilli and onions and served with corn-on-the-cob and sweet potato.
Ecuador – Tigrillo
A hearty mix of mashed green plantain, scrambled eggs and cheese, sometimes served with avocado and lime wedges.
Colombia – Changua
Flickr/manuela y Daniel
Changua is a typical breakfast dish of the Colombia Andes and particularly good in Bogota. This simple soup of milk, spring onions, coriander, bread and poached eggs is an excellent way to start the day.
Uruguay – Bizcochos
Bizcochos is a term used for pastries in Spanish, and in Uruguay this usually means the croissant-like pastries that are very popular for breakfast. Similarly to Argentina these are accompanied by sweet milky coffee.
Panama – Arepas
Flickr/Gabriel Garcia Marengo
Panamanian cuisine is a reflection of its position between two continents and its diverse population. It draws influence from many of the countries that surround it. Arepas are corn flour breads topped with cheese, eggs and beans.
Costa Rica – Gallo Pinto
Gallo pinto is the most commonly eaten breakfast in Costa Rica. A simply but delicious dish of rice and beans cooked in chicken stock and served with toast and eggs.
Guatemala – Desayuno Chapín
Desayuno Chapín (Chapín being the nickname for Guatemala) is a scrumptious hearty medley of scrambled eggs, refried beans, chirmol (tomato sauce), fried plantains, cheese and bread served with plenty of coffee.
Mexico – Huevos Rancheros
This is typical of rural Mexico, usually served in the mid-morning. Fried eggs laid on corn tortillas are topped with plenty of extras including refried beans, avocado, chili sauce, rice and more.
Belize – Fry Jack
Fry Jacks are a stable of Belizean breakfasts. These deep fried crispy dough pieces are often served with eggs, beans or jam and honey.