Peru is famous for offering visitors scenic views and an immersion in the Inca culture – but it is not only that. In the last decade, the country has emerged as one of the best gastronomic destinations and a must-go place for foodies. Peruvians have attracted all the attention for mastering molecular gastronomy, but it also has traditional dishes from thousands of years ago.

Peruvian cuisine receives influence from different cultures, including Spanish and Japanese, which results in unique dishes. Here are some of the best Peruvian dishes and where to find them while visiting the country.

10 The Most Delicious Ceviche In The World

Ceviche, the combination of cubed raw fishes marinated in juice, has become a popular dish around the globe in the last few years, but it has been around for at least 3,000 years. The ceviche was created in Peru, and it has evolved throughout its history. It became the national dish, and it is possible to find cevicherias in almost every region of Peru.

Lima is famous for having the bests ceviches in the country, especially in the restaurants at Miraflores.

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9 There Are Countless Dishes Made With Alpaca

Alpacas are popular in Peru, and tourists love taking pictures with them while exploring the South American country. The animals are also a popular delicacy in Peruvian dishes, as their meat is considered one of the healthiest in the world.

The saltado de alpacas is probably the most popular dish prepared with alpaca meat, featuring strips of sautéed meat and vegetables. It is possible to find it in every tourist city. In Lima, the most famous saltado de alpacas is prepared at Doomo Saltado.

8 The Tastiest Peruvian Chicken Dish

If someone asks a Peruvian what their favorite dish is, they are highly likely to say ají de gallina (creamy chicken). The dish is the most famous influence they've received from the creole cuisine prepared with shredded chicken cooked with a yellow ají sauce. The ají de gallina is often served with rice and eggs.

It is possible to find it all over the country. In Cusco, visitors can learn how to make it at A Mi Manera, a traditional restaurant offering cooking classes. The restaurant takes pride in serving the most traditional Peruvian dishes.

7 Peru Also Has Its Own Empanadas Recipe

Empanadas are famous in Latin America, and each country adds its own ingredients and flavors. Minced meat (often eaten with lemon) and chicken are Peruvians' favorite fillings. Another popular filling for the empanadas is the ají de gallina.

The snack can be found on the streets, and it is also common for breakfast in Peru. The empanadas are available all over the country, but visitors looking for high quality should definitely go to Empanadas Paulistas in Lima. They prepare extra-filled empanadas with 95% filling and just 5% of the dough.

Guinea pigs are perceived as pets in many countries, but in some places in South America – Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru – they are known as a delicacy. The meat is marketed as a healthier option than red meat, and visitors can find different versions of cuy in restaurants, including curried or roasted.

Cuy is served in almost every traditional Peruvian restaurant. In Lima, Huancahuasi is a popular option, and their menu also includes other traditional dishes. In Cusco, there are countless cuyerías, restaurants specialized in preparing guinea pigs.

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5 Peru Has Its Own Paella

Seafood lovers might find the perfect dish for them in Peru. The arroz con mariscos is similar to a paella, but with a Peruvian touch. The dish is made with rice, ají amarillo, tomato sauce, chili peppers, shrimps, mussels, scallops, and squids. People can also top the combination with parmesan cheese.

For tourists, the best option is to try the arroz con mariscos in the cities near the coast, so the ingredients are fresher. The Bara Maretazo is a seafood restaurant in Lima and the arroz con mariscos is among their most popular dishes.

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Peru has over 3,000 types of potatoes, and it's no surprise they are the main ingredient in Peruvian cuisine. Causa rellena, a layered potato casserole, is a great example. The base of the dish is mashed potatoes mixed with ají amarillo sauce, lime, and oil. The potatoes are covered with an avocado layer and topped with shredded tuna or chicken.

The recipe can be different depending on the region or restaurant. At Mi Barrunto, Lima, it is prepared with crabs or ceviche. Other places can use beef and various types of fish.

3 Japanese Culture Also Influenced Some Dishes

When Japanese immigrants arrived in South America country in the 19th Century, they tried to recreate some of their dishes with the ingredients available. Combining both cultures has resulted in what is known as Nikkei cuisine.

One of the most popular options is thetiradito, fine raw fish slices that look like sashimi. The tiradito is covered with a citrus sauce, and it can also include corn and potatoes. Tiraditos can be easily found on cevicherias.

2 Peru Has Some Amazing Soups

Peru is the largest quinoa producer in the world, and the plant has already been labeled as a superfood due to its high nutritional value. While visiting Peru, a good idea is to try quinoa dishes, especially the Peruvian quinoa soup. For comfort-food fans, the vegetable soup with quinoa.

The InkaGrill restaurant, Cusco, is famous among clients for its quinoa soup, perfect for when the temperature drops in the region. Yet, people can easily prepare it at home, using onions, carrots, cabbage, and seasoning. Other popular soups in Peru are the chupe de camarones and patasca.

1 Peruvians Also Have Amazing Snacks

Several appetizers in Peru are made of corn and seafood – two essential ingredients in the Peruvian dishes. The piqueo caliente consists of breaded seafood with sauce. The restaurants often serve generous portions that combine squid, shrimp, and fish.

Lima has the reputation of having the best piqueos calientes, which can be found in most restaurants. The Piqueo Trujilano, for example, serves traditional food and the piqueo caliente is one of their specialties.