Foods of Chile

Pastel de choclo

Pastel de ChocloThe best I can describe this is as a corn, beef casserole.  It translates to cake of corn.  There’s also onions, olives, eggs, and spices in it.  The way it was prepared for us was with full olives so watch out for the pits.  I did find a recipe for it on if you’d like to read more about it.


CompletosYou will see little shops selling these all over.  Completos are very popular and affordable.  However, you had better like mayo.  It is pretty much a foot-long hot dog with tomatoes, avocado, and a lot of mayo. If you want to order one without mayo, just ask for one “sin blanco”, but the vender may look at you like you’re crazy and go for the mayo anyways.


This is similar to pico de gallo.  Don’t call it pico de gallo, however, because in Chilean slang “pico” means “penis” and you may draw a few laughs.  They will know what you are talking about, though.  It is typically served with bread.



“Caldera” translates to “cauldron”.  It is literally a cauldron of meats, seafood, and a bottle of white wine.  This is a fun dish to share with a large group.  We had four of us working on it and we did not finish it.  Because there are oysters soaked in white wine, the sauce is supposed to be an aphrodisiac so the person who drinks it from the bowl may be teased a little.  It’s all in good fun.



Cordero is the Spanish word for lamb.  In southern Chile, if you are invited to a parrillada (barbecue) there may be a lamb on an open spit.  Other things are typically grilled as well and served while the lamb cooks. Likely choripans – my favorite – are one of these foods.  Choripans are chorizo hot dogs in bread (pan).




This is a mound of French fries with meat, sausage, and an egg on top.  My stomach did not agree with this dish but my husband enjoys it.


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