25 Of The Most AMAZING Panamanian Recipes

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The food of the country Panama is a delicious fusion of African, Spanish, and Native American cuisine. It is known as Panamanian cuisine. 

The reason for this is because the population of Panama is so diverse, meaning the food culture there is widely diverse too. 

25 Of The Most AMAZING Panamanian Recipes

In this article, I am going to be exploring 25 of the most delicious and amazing Panamanian recipes. 

1. Panamanian Sancocho

Image Source: allrecipes

This delicious dish is the Panamanian version of chicken soup. Chicken soup is a universally loved recipe and I’m pretty sure it is on the verge of being medical (well, it is the go-to food when you have a cold or flu).

It is flavored with cilantro and yuca for that recognizable Panamanian edge. Not to be missed if you are a fan of heartwarming, home-cooked food. 

2. Yuca Fritters – Carimañolas

Yuca Fritters - Carimañolas
Image Source: ethnicspoon

Not to be confused with the yucca plant, these delicious Panamanian favorites are super versatile root vegetables.

Yuca fritters are a favorite fried food in the country, and the best part is you can customize the fritters however you like with your favorite meat and seasonings. 

3. Sopa Borracha (Panamanian Rum Cake)

Sopa Borracha (Panamanian Rum Cake)

This deliciously light and airy sponge cake has been soaked with a syrup made from rum and sherry. I mean, could there be anything more delicious? Try it for yourself and let me know!

You won’t regret it…especially since it is a Panamanian favorite dessert! 

4. Flan de Queso (Cream Cheese Flan)

Sopa Borracha (Panamanian Rum Cake)
Image Source: allrecipes

This delicious sweet treat is a favorite in Panama and many other South American and Latin communities. It is sweet, creamy, and so smooth in terms of texture.

It is always best eaten cold so make sure it has adequate chilling time before you dig in! 

5. Mexican Tamales

OK, so whilst these are not technically Panamanian, given the proximity to Mexico and the cultural similarities, it is not at all surprising to find that Tamales (and other Mexican dishes) are endlessly popular in Panama.

These delicious snack foods will be a hit, especially at festive parties and weddings where they are traditionally served. 

6. Panamanian Beef Stew Recipe

Panamanian Beef Stew Recipe
Image Source: ethnicspoon

Beef stew is a staple comfort food in cultures all around the world. Turns out it’s no different down in Panama.

This Panamanian beef stew brings a Latin twist to a hearty meal enjoyed by all.

It uses popular Panamanian ingredients such as sofrito (a tomato concentrate with herbs, spices, garlic, and onion in there – full of heat and tasty goodness) and recaito (another flavor concentrate with cilantro as the main flavor) to make it taste super authentic. 

7. Ponche De Ron (Rum Eggnog)

Ponche De Ron (Rum Eggnog)
Image Source: dominicancooking

It’s like Christmas…in a cup! Technically this is a Dominican recipe, but again, as I explained in the Mexican recipe, Panama is a fusion of different cultures, and so it is not surprising that this particular Dominican drink is so popular.

This is a lot like eggnog and uses delicious Dominican rum for that alcoholic kick. Certainly not for kids…so keep this one for the adults’ drinks parties! 

8. Panamanian Tortillas (Thick Corn Cakes)

Panamanian Tortillas (Thick Corn Cakes)

Thick corn tortillas are a staple in Panamanian cuisine and can be served alongside a variety of dishes for dipping and dunking. This recipe is super simple, easy to follow, and above all, delicious

9. Tostones (Fried Green Plantains)

Tostones (Fried Green Plantains)
Image Source: hostthetoast

Green plantains are a very popular food in Panama, and these Tostones showcase them at their very best. They are a savory snack that is crispy and salty – like French fries but better!

Despite their banana-like appearance, plantains are more like potatoes. Hence why tostones are just so good

10. Chicheme-Sweet Corn Panamanian Drink 

Chicheme-Sweet Corn Panamanian Drink 
Image Source: cocinerita

This delicious sweet drink uses corn (yes, I am serious) as its main ingredient before you start freaking out, let me reassure you that a drink this popular can only be delicious…and it really is!

It uses hominy which is dry and uncooked corn, as well as delicious sweet spices, vanilla, almond milk, and evaporated milk. Best served cold (like a milkshake!). 

11. Pollo Guisado (Panamanian Style)

Pollo Guisado (Panamanian Style)

This chicken stew uses chicken ‘on the bone’ for the fullest, richest flavor possible.

It is full of delicious tasting ingredients such as peppers, onions, garlic, and tomato, not forgetting the Panamanian staple Sazon Goya which is a stock cube packed full of all the herbs and spices needed for Panamanian cuisine.

Check out the recipe below for a different take on this dish… 

12. Instant Pot Chicken Stew With Corn (Pollo Guisado Con Maiz)

Instant Pot Chicken Stew With Corn (Pollo Guisado Con Maiz)
Image Source: skinnytaste

…..and for a slightly different take on Pollo Guisado, I have here the Pollo Guisado Con Maiz which translates to ‘with corn’. This is all done in an instant pot and served with Panamanian staple, fresh corn!

You will notice a slight difference in the main recipe, but that is just a homage to the home cooking culture of Panamanian food which means that every family has a slightly different way of doing things. 

13. Carne Guisada (Latin Beef Stew)

Carne Guisada (Latin Beef Stew)
Image Source: skinnytaste

This Columbian inspired beef stew is super popular in Panama. Remember when I said that Panama is a fusion of different cultures? Well, the love for this Columbian dish by Panamanian people just demonstrates that!

It is hearty, filling, and full of delicious Latin inspired flavors such as cilantro, achiote, and cumin. 

14. Panamanian Cocadas (Coconut Cookies)

Panamanian Cocadas (Coconut Cookies)
Image Source: internationalcuisine

You had me at cookies…. These delicious sweet treats are a particularly popular snack food in Panama, and it is easy to see why when you look at the ingredients list!

Coconut and sweetened condensed milk really bring this cookie to life. And what’s more – there are no eggs, making it perfect for those with an egg allergy. 

15. Caramelized Sweet Plantains (Plátanos Maduros en Tentación)

Caramelized Sweet Plantains (Plátanos Maduros en Tentación)
Image Source: food52

This recipe uses sweet plantains as opposed to the green plantains used in an earlier savory recipe. You will also find flavorings such as sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla.

Not all Panamanians use these ingredients for sweet plantains. In fact, many simply rely on the sweetness of the plantains themselves, using just butter to fry them. 

16. Mini Panamanian Beef Empanadas

Mini Panamanian Beef Empanadas
Image Source: myrecipes

Empanadas feature in the cuisine of many Latin countries and cultures. Panama is no different! These delicious Beef Empanadas use beef jerky and culantro which is Mexican cilantro (as opposed to regular cilantro).

They are very similar to an English ‘pasty’ which is made from pastry and seals in a meat filling. 

17. Panamanian Chorizo Criollo

Panamanian Chorizo Criollo
Image Source: twoguysandacooler

This recipe teaches you how to make the delicious Panamanian sausage that has been flavored with sweet pepper (Aji Criollo) and culantro (Mexican cilantro).

It is smoked according to a strict schedule to achieve its delicious flavor! The perfect recipe for those with a smoker! 

18. Panamanian Style Ropa Vieja

Panamanian Style Ropa Vieja
Image Source: love2bbq

If you like pulled pork or beef, then this is the perfect dish for you! It is super simple to BBQ pulled beef but with a Latin twist.

It is recommended that you use skirt steak for this and that you smoke it first! Serve it with black bean rice for a truly authentic meal. 

19. Yiyimbre Muffins – Panamanian Gingerbread

Yiyimbre Muffins – Panamanian Gingerbread
Image Source: globalkitchentravels

These delicious gingerbread inspired muffins are the perfect winter or fall treat when served with a coffee or hot cider. They are also vegan and full of warmth, spiciness, and flavor.

It is particularly popular in the Chiriqui area of Panama. Ensure you use fresh ginger for the best results. 

20. Panamanian Almojábano Recipe

Panamanian Almojábano Recipe
Image Source: nashifood

Like the gingerbread muffin recipe above, this recipe comes from the Chiriqui province of Panama. They are a type of delicious fried food, full of cheese and corn. “Cheese you say? They are bound to be a hit, then!”…and they certainly are!

21. Panamanian Fish Ceviche

Panamanian Fish Ceviche
Image Source: craftlog

You have a few choices of fish to use for this fish ceviche dish. The recipe creator suggests rockfish, sole, red snapper, seabass, or cod so you can choose the one you prefer.

It is fresh and tasty, especially when served with fried plantain and salted crackers. 

22. Tomato and Avocado Salad – Panamanian Food

Tomato and Avocado Salad – Panamanian Food
Image Source: whereismyspoon

Whilst this is not solely a Panamanian food, side salads such as this one are popular in the country as they work well when served alongside many of their cultural favorite dishes.

This particular salad is fresh and flavorful! 

23. Hojaldres

Image Source: tasteatlas

This delicious bread is often served in Panama at breakfast time. It is super simple so it can be used as a base for other foods.

Whilst the texture is like donuts, it is savory and so is often topped with cheese or served alongside salchichas guisadas (a sausage stew). 

24. Panamanian Pink Potato Salad (Ensalada de Papas)

Panamanian Pink Potato Salad (Ensalada de Papas)
Image Source: bittersweetblog

This gorgeous potato salad gets its color from the beets and potatoes, as well as the red onion.

The recipe uses vegan mayonnaise, making this a great option for plant-based friends, but you can use regular mayo if you want to! 

25. Pan Bon

Pan Bon
Image Source: quericavida

This sweet candied bread is often served in Holy festivals in certain parts of Panama. It is a very dessert-like bread that can be enjoyed alongside coffee, tea, or as breakfast food.

Try it with jam in the same way as you might eat a scone!