Try the Melting Pot of Bonaire
March 3, 2023
TRY THE MELTING POT OF BONAIRE
On Bonaire, we’ve long believed that sharing a traditional meal is the best way to bring families together and make new friends. It’s in our nature to share our experiences and as a certified Culinary Capital we want to give food lovers confidence to travel to Bonaire for its unique gastronomy.
This certification is a great boost for Bonaire and all the hardworking professionals who have put the diverse culinary culture of our small island on the map in recent years. From snacks to beverages to full meals and desserts we encourage our visitors to let their taste buds explore the melting pot of Bonaire.
The excellent taste of Bonaire
Let us help you enjoy our island’s finest to the fullest in ways that suit you the best. It is our pleasure to take care of you the moment you set foot on this very special rock. We recommend our restaurants, featuring award winning regional and international chefs who add their personal touch for your ultimate eating experience. Bonaire’s diverse ethnicities will delight your palate.
So, let’s indulge in Bonaire’s authentic cuisine.
EAT LIKE A LOCAL
Catch of the day
Since we live on a tropical island, many of our dishes naturally feature fish in an array of combinations. The best thing about it is that our local fishermen always bring the freshest catch of the day to our restaurants for you to enjoy. One of Bonaire’s most typical meals is certainly the ‘Piska Hasa’ (fried fish). This fish-based dish, accompanied by Funchi (polenta) and a salad will delight your plates.
Try the G.O.A.T.
Do you want to become an official local G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time)? Try out the delicious goat stew! ‘Stoba di Kabritu’ or ‘Kabritu Stobá’ is perhaps the most popular Bonaire dish. You make this traditional stew with pieces of goat meat, vegetables and various spices. By letting the meat cook for a long time and on a low heat, the goat becomes buttery soft. Enjoy this meal with a side of funchi or rice and fries.
Are You More Adventurous? Try This!
If you are a real foodie, you cannot leaveIguana soup the island without trying our iguana stew or soup. These arboreal and terrestrial animals have been a big part of the Bonaire culinary scene for decades. The most common thing people say when trying out this meal is: “It tastes like chicken”! Well, it actually does but expect smaller pieces of meat.
The Party Favors
Are you looking for a Bonairean addition to your party buffet? Try out these delicious snacks:
Pastechi is one of the most popular snacks on the island. You can have it as a savory breakfast or as a snack. These crescent-shaped fried buns are filled with meat such as chicken, beef, tuna, vegetables or cheese. Try it out, and let us know what you think about it!
Being a cousin of the pastechi, the Palito is also a popular snack for the locals. You can compare the Palito with a Corn Dog, but instead, the batter is the same as Pastechi. You can make them bigger by using hotdogs or smaller by using half or cocktail sausages.
Try out these deliciously quick and easy Webu Yená. This is our version of deviled eggs and make them fresh and spicy with cayenne pepper and mustard. This snack is definitely a must have for all parties.
For the cheese lovers this is easy to make and everyone likes them. A nice cheese ball rolled by hand and you can make them as big or as small as you want. Once it hits the oil and the smell spreads around the kitchen, your tummy will be begging to try it right away!
Refresh With Our Local Favorites
Are you looking for a refreshment? And do you want to drink something local? Quench your thirst with ‘Awa di Lamunchi’ or ‘Djus di Tamarein’. These are made from local fruits and can be found in different restaurants, snack bars or shops.
Awa di Lamunchi
‘Awa di Lamunchi’ is a delicious refreshing drink made out of limes. It is super simple to make and everyone will love it. On the island we drink this sweet drink when it is really hot. Just before the rainy season, temperatures sometimes rise to 40 degrees and in such a case, a glass of awa di Lamunchi will be the best refreshment. The drink is very easy to make yourself. All you need is limes, sugar and water. The sugar and a small portion of the water are boiled together to dissolve the sugar crystals, then the lime juice is added. Finally, the thick syrup is diluted with water to taste. You can make this as sweet as you want.
Djus di Tamarein
Originally from East Africa, tamarind’s tangy taste and benefits have crossed continents and now run wild all over our island. Just like the ‘Awa di Lamunchi’, the ‘Djus di Tamarein’ will cool you off and provide a satisfying sour-yet-sweet taste. Try making this drink by boiling the tamarind fruit in water with brown sugar and stirring with a wooden spoon until texture thickens. Taste and add more water as needed. Strain the pits and let cool. And if you like it sweeter, add more sugar if needed.
Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth
We know for a fact that you’ll enjoy the end of the meal as much as the beginning. Satisfy your sweet tooth with our tantalizing and world-famous rum raisin cake. But living in the tropics has also given us a taste for something cool. Here on Bonaire, we have a typical local ice cream that we make that is a cross between water ice and ice cream. This is the ‘Li’ and we make these with different flavors such as, peanut butter, pistachio, pineapple, fruit mix and more. Peanut butter Li is the most popular here on the island. You should definitely give it a try! Get to know the locals and they will point out exactly where you can find these. Some can be purchased in Toko’s or you can find a local that sells these at home.
Let's Continue To Inspire Each Other
We would like to inspire our community and visitors to share their Bonaire culinary experience with the world by posting it on social media. Tell the world about our favorite dishes, outstanding places to eat on the island and best moments created together. Don’t forget to mention us @BonaireIsland and use the hashtags #BonaireCulinaryCapital #BonaireIsland #ItsInOurNature to be featured on our pages.
Let’s continue to celebrate and enhance our rich culture together. Enjoy and explore the Bonaire’s culinary scene. We have saved a seat for you!