Chileans traditionally eat four meals a day. Desayuno (breakfast) is served before 8 a.m. El almuerzo (lunch) is the main meal of the day and is eaten around 2 p.m. Around 5 p.m., Chileans have a snack called once. They eat la comida (dinner) after 8 p.m.

Potatoes, beans and bread are staples in Chilean cooking. Pebre is a popular hot sauce. The preferred meats are beef and chicken. Chileans also eat a lot of seafood.

The Caldillo de congrio, conger eel soup, is a favourite dish. Other popular dishes include porotos granados, a bean and corn chowder, and humitas, grated or crushed grains of corn cooked in their own husks. Ulpo is a type of warm porridge made with toasted flour and milk. Empanadas, meat pastries, are a favourite treat during festivals and holidays and are often served as a snack or the first course of a large meal.

Did you know?

On rainy days, Chileans like to eat Sapaipillas, a fried tortilla made with pumpkin and flour.

Chileans love to drink wine with their meals. Pisco is another popular alcoholic drink made from grapes, which can be served alone or mixed with other drinks. A popular form is pisco sour, a cocktail made with pisco, lemon juice, sugar, ice and beaten egg white. Chileans also enjoy aguita, a herbal tea, mote con huesillo, a drink made from dried peach, barley and cinnamon, and chicha, a fermented grape juice drink that tastes like apple cider. Yerba mate is a drink like tea, made from the leaves of a shrub belonging to the holly family. It is very high in caffeine and is popular in rural areas.



500 g all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 pinch salt
1 whole egg, beaten, plus 1 egg yolk
325 ml warm milk
250 ml melted shortening
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp paprika
4 onions, finely chopped
˝ tsp each chili powder, cumin, oregano and salt
250 g ground beef (can be substituted with any other meat, cheese or seafood)
3 hard-boiled eggs, sliced
40 large raisins
20 black olives


Sift flour with baking soda and salt. Add egg, milk, and shortening. Mix to make stiff dough. Divide into 20 pieces and roll each into a thin circle. For the stuffing, heat oil in a frying pan with paprika. Sauté onions. Add spices and meat and brown meat. Place a spoonful of stuffing on each dough circle. Add hard-boiled egg, raisins and olives. Fold dough over filling, wet the edge with milk, and seal edges. Bake in a 200°C oven until light brown.