A great way to experience Uruguay’s cuisine is by visiting some of its food markets, which are not only beautiful, but also a perfect option for satisfying every whim with numerous dishes to choose from. These are the top indoor and outdoor food markets to visit in Montevideo, Uruguay.
This building, constructed from steel, is one of Uruguay’s main attractions. It’s located in the older part of the city, right across the port of Montevideo, and it was originally a market for fruit, vegetables, and meat. Today, it’s still called the “Harbor Market,” but there aren’t quite as many stalls and stands. Instead, it hosts a good range of restaurants with counters facing in towards the barbecue, where people can sit and enjoy one of Uruguay’s most traditional dishes: asado, which consists of a barbecue including all types of meat, sausages, and organ meats. Afterwards, people usually wander and get lost in the small gift shops to buy some traditional souvenirs.
Since its opening in 2017, Mercado Ferrando has become one of the most popular new markets in Montevideo. It was built in an old furniture factory and combines gourmet restaurants with a few food-related stores. What’s especially interesting is its table sharing concept, which is unusual in Uruguay. For food, they offer a lot more variety than in Mercado del Puerto. Apart from asado, you can find burgers, pasta, salads, and international cuisine like tacos, paella, poke bowls, and much more. The most important advice for visitors is to go with enough time and be patient—just remember: in Uruguay, when a place is crowded, it’s usually worth it.
Also known as MAM, this food market was founded in 1913 and for 100 years it functioned as a distribution center for local fruits and vegetables until its remodeling in 2013. In fact, restaurants, food-related gift stores, and green groceries were added only quite recently. Since then, it’s become the perfect spot for either grocery shopping all your fresh produce and cooking needs, or else for sitting down to meals cooked for you, including Uruguayan dishes, pizza, asado, ice-cream, smoothies, and more. The market also acts as a performance space where different traditional Uruguayan shows take place during the week, such as tango, music shows, and a variety of professional showcases and galas by widely recognized dancing troops.
Degusto is a well-known gastronomic festival held in Montevideo several times a year. Each time, it takes place in a different location as a way to bring different food traditions to different neighborhoods. Held in parks throughout the city, each iteration attracts lots of people eager to try food from as many foodtrucks as possible, which sell burgers, beer, arepas, ice cream, cakes, and all types of artisanal products.
This is a festival focused not only on food, but also on art, music, and fashion. Which means visitors can enjoy delicious burgers, beer, salads, pies, and more, while listening to an acoustic live show, shopping for clothes, or just enjoying a sunny afternoon in the park. Held in a different location each time, Montevideo Pop Up is like a massive picnic where people stay for hours, enjoying all the good things in life in just one place.
This is the most specialized of all the food markets, since it focuses exclusively on organic, vegetarian, vegan meals, and healthy food in general. Camino Verde is like a paradise for conscious eaters, people interested in healthy lifestyle and products, or anyone who loves trying new dishes. Camino Verde takes place several times a year and offers a wide variety of food to choose from, along with healthy shops and stalls with all types on natural ingredients. It also offers healthy cooking lessons that everyone can take advantage of.