8 Dishes to Eat When You Are in Miami, Florida

Miami is known for its colorful and diverse food scene
Miami is known for its colorful and diverse food scene | © breckeni / Getty Images
Karina Castrillo

Are you planning a vacation in tropical paradise? Between club-hopping and beach bumming, make time to try Miami’s cuisine. The Magic City is known for being a cultural melting pot, so it’s no wonder that it’s teeming with cuisine from all over the world – especially Latin American flavors.

Cuban Sandwich

When the Cubans migrated to Miami, they brought along their Cuban sabor. Don’t leave the 3-0-5 without trying a Cuban sandwich. Tampa may declare that they make better Cuban sandwiches than Miami, but don’t be fooled. Miami takes the crown when it comes to these babies. A Cuban is basically toasted Cuban bread filled with ham, roast pork, swiss cheese, pickles and mustard. It’s filling, and good any time of the day. You can get it from la ventanita (hole in the wall) at El Palacio de Los Jugos, or check out our list of restaurants with the best Cuban sandwiches.

Tampa may claim to make the best Cuban sandwiches, but Miami is stiff competition

Picadillo

There are countless other Cuban favorites, but to give the other countries a chance, we’ll just mention the picadillo. The dish of ground beef cooked with cherry tomatoes and paired with soupy black beans, rice and plantains is savory and delicious. Have it for dinner, and you might not be hungry again until the next afternoon.

The Cuban piccadillo is as filling as it is delicious

Ceviche

Peruvian cuisine has recently been acclaimed for being one of the best in the world and, thankfully, there are lots of Peruvian restaurants in Miami. Try their ceviche de corvina; refreshing and tangy, the fish is diced into cubes, prepared with lime and served in a bowl with corn, red onions and sweet potato. Pair it with their chicha morada, a sweet non-alcoholic drink made from purple corn with cinnamon, and you’re really on to a winner. For authentic Peruvian cuisine, go to the locals’ favorite Sabor a Peru on Biscayne Boulevard and NE 29th Street. The service is excellent, and the portions are generous.

Ceviche, a traditional Peruvian dish, has been having a global moment recently

Arepas

Think of arepas like a thick tortilla but stuffed with cheese, chicken, beef and other tasty ingredients. Somewhere between a snack and a meal, they’re notable in Columbian and Venezuelan cuisines and always hit the spot. You can get one for about $5 at La Latina in Wynwood.

A pork arepa with guacamole are cheap and incredibly moreish

Croquetas

You really can’t leave Miami without tasting croquetas. Originating from Spain, it’s the Cuban way of making this breaded finger-food that we crave. They look like mozzarella sticks, but inside is smashed ham. You can get them at any bakery in Miami, and it’s recommended to pair them with a cafecito and pastelitos of guava and cheese for the ultimate breakfast.

Spanish croquetas are filled with smashed ham and deep fried

Key Lime Pie

You can taste scrumptious key lime pie pretty much anywhere these days. Cookie crust, Key lime custard and a dollop of whipped cream mean you’re definitely in for a treat and, for the best key lime pie in the city, check out this article.

Tangy lime, smooth cream and a sweet cookie crust make key lime pie an enduring favorite

Mofongo

Miami’s Puerto Rican food scene has been growing like crazy over recent years, with dishes like mofongo taking centre stage. This tasty classic is traditionally made from mashed, fried plantain with garlic, olive oil and pork rinds, but other variants exist. One taste and you’ll be hooked – try it at Jimmy’z Kitchen Wynwood.

The main ingredient of mofongo is mashed, fried plantain

Stone Crabs

Stone crabs in Miami are a delicacy. The legendary Joe’s Stone Crabs prepares them best every season, serving them with coleslaw and seasoned with lemon, butter or tartar sauce.

Joe’s Stone Crab Restaurant in Miami Beach is a local legend

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