While Cabo Verdean cuisine may include Portuguese niceties such as imported olives and Alentejo wines, it's built on a firm African base, with milho (corn) and feijão (beans) the ubiquitous staples. Thanks to the large number of Italian tourists and expats, good pizza and pasta dishes are available in even the most out-of-the-way places.

The Basics

Cabo Verde has a mix of humble family-run eateries and more polished restaurants in tourist destinations. At the most popular restaurants it's best to reserve ahead, especially during peak season (November to March).

  • Restaurants Offer a wide mix of dining options including seafood, European fare and local specialities.
  • Cafes Good place for snacks and drinks; some offer daily lunch specials.
  • Hotels & Guesthouses Sometimes the only place to get a meal in rural areas.

Glossary

arroz – rice

atum – tuna

batatas fritas – fried potatoes (French fries)

cabrito – goat

caldeirada – meat or fish stew

cachupa – a filling blend of beans, boiled corn, cassava, sweet potato and sometimes pork or chicken; the national dish

carne de vaca – beef

frango – chicken

garoupa – grouper fish

lagosta – lobster

mandioca – cassava

ovos – eggs

prato del dia – daily special (usually lunch only)

porco –grilled pork

pudim – a flanlike dessert

serra – sawfish