A Friendly Guide to Restaurants in Belize
Belize is a small Central American country that boasts a rich cultural heritage, stunning natural landscapes, and a thriving culinary scene. Whether you’re looking for delicious local cuisine or international flavors, there’s something for every food lover here. In this guide, we’ll dive into the best dining experiences in Belize, from street food to fine dining. So, let’s get started!
1. Belizean Cuisine: A Flavorful Fusion
Belizean cuisine is a delightful fusion of diverse influences, including Maya, Creole, Garifuna, East Indian, Chinese, and Mestizo. With such a rich culinary heritage, you’re in for a treat when trying out local dishes. Don’t miss the national dish of Belize, rice and beans, which is often served with stewed chicken, plantains, and coleslaw. Other must-try dishes include salbutes, garnaches, and escabeche.
2. Street Food and Local Eats
One of the best ways to experience Belizean cuisine is by exploring the country’s vibrant street food scene. Here are some popular spots for mouth-watering street food:
a. Chef Rob’s Gourmet Cafe (Hopkins)
A must-visit in the village of Hopkins, Chef Rob’s Gourmet Cafe offers a blend of local and international dishes made with fresh ingredients. Enjoy a laid-back atmosphere with an ocean view as you savor delicious dishes like shrimp and grits, or the catch of the day.
b. Erva’s Restaurant (San Ignacio)
Located in San Ignacio, Erva’s is a family-owned eatery that serves authentic Belizean food. With a warm and friendly atmosphere, you’ll feel right at home as you enjoy classic dishes like fry jacks and stewed chicken.
c. Elvi’s Kitchen (San Pedro, Ambergris Caye)
For a taste of island life, head to Elvi’s Kitchen on Ambergris Caye. This legendary spot offers a variety of Belizean dishes, including ceviche, grilled lobster, and tamales. Be sure to try their famous Mayan Feast, a unique dining experience that showcases traditional Mayan cuisine.
3. Fine Dining in Belize
If you’re looking to splurge on a special meal during your trip, Belize has several top-notch fine dining establishments. Here are some of our favorites:
a. Running W Steakhouse & Restaurant (San Ignacio)
Located at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel, Running W Steakhouse offers a luxurious dining experience. Their menu features premium cuts of Belizean beef, as well as seafood, pasta, and vegetarian dishes. Make sure to try their signature dish, the Running W Tenderloin, which is cooked to perfection and served with a delicious sauce.
b. Guava Limb Café (San Ignacio)
Guava Limb Café offers a farm-to-table dining experience with a focus on sustainability. Their menu is diverse, featuring Belizean, Caribbean, and international dishes made with locally sourced ingredients. Be sure to try their fresh ceviche and coconut curry shrimp.
c. Blue Water Grill (San Pedro, Ambergris Caye)
Overlooking the Caribbean Sea, Blue Water Grill offers an elegant dining experience with spectacular views. Their menu features a variety of dishes, including sushi,grilled seafood, and steaks. Don’t miss their famous lionfish ceviche, a delicious and eco-friendly dish that helps control the invasive lionfish population in Belize’s waters.
4. Vegetarian and Vegan Options
While Belizean cuisine is known for its meat and seafood dishes, there are still plenty of vegetarian and vegan options available. Here are some eateries that cater to plant-based diets:
a. The Green Iguana (Caye Caulker)
This charming cafe on Caye Caulker offers an array of vegetarian and vegan dishes, from hummus and falafel wraps to smoothie bowls and fresh salads. Don’t forget to try their homemade kombucha!
b. Amor y Cafe (Caye Caulker)
Another great spot on Caye Caulker, Amor y Cafe serves delicious vegetarian and vegan dishes made with fresh, local ingredients. The menu includes items like veggie burritos, veggie omelets, and homemade granola.
c. Bamboo House (Placencia)
Bamboo House in Placencia offers an extensive vegetarian and vegan menu, featuring dishes like tofu stir-fry, vegetable curry, and vegan chocolate cake. The restaurant’s cozy atmosphere and friendly staff make it an excellent choice for a relaxing meal.
5. International Cuisine
In addition to its diverse local flavors, Belize offers a variety of international cuisine options. Here are some standout international dining experiences:
a. Paradiso Cafe (San Pedro, Ambergris Caye)
Paradiso Cafe offers a taste of Italy in the heart of San Pedro. Their menu features homemade pasta, wood-fired pizzas, and delicious gelato, making it a perfect spot for those craving Italian cuisine.
b. Indian Tandoori Hut (Placencia)
If you’re in the mood for some Indian cuisine, head to Indian Tandoori Hut in Placencia. Their menu offers a wide range of dishes, from butter chicken and lamb korma to paneer tikka masala and vegetable biryani.
c. The Baker (Caye Caulker)
For a taste of Europe, visit The Baker on Caye Caulker, where you can enjoy freshly baked French pastries, bread, and sandwiches. Their almond croissants and pain au chocolat are a must-try!
We hope this guide helps you navigate the diverse and delicious dining options in Belize. From local street food to fine dining establishments, there’s something to suit every palate. Enjoy your culinary adventures in this beautiful Central American country!