The most important tip I can give you on Guinea-Bissau  local food, and the only one that will make you elevate from being a tourist to becoming a real traveler immersed in the local culture, is “Stay away from McDonalds“. When visiting Guinea-Bissau, there is awesome local food to try. Head to the local eateries too, and go where the locals go. For me, the food, wine and and even the water is part of the travel experience.

What to Eat in

Guinea foods photo

Photo by [puamelia]

Most Guineans eat rice with fish, because the country is rich in fish, and rice (homegrown or imported from Thailand) is relatively cheap. The more costly meals contain beef, goat, chicken or pork. Meals are also made with palm oil and peanut sauces and diverse vegetables. Guineans also eat wild/game meat (deer, monkey, beaver etc.) but these animals are considered to be in danger of extinction and so it is not recommended to support this.

Guineans are known for their warm heartedness and so you will always be asked to come have a bit with a group of people (it is common to eat from a large bowl)…”bin kume, no kume” Fruit available depends on the season, but mangos, papayas, oranges, grape fruits, bananas, cashews and peanuts are abundant. Also try the sour “fole” fruits and the baobab fruit juice (sumo de cabaceira). Imported fruit can be bought in “fera de prasa” in the centre of Bissau (apples, pears, pineapples, watermelons etc) but is more expensive than in Europe.

Vegetables sold in the markets include lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, bell pepper, parsley, okra, potatoes, carrots, onions, garlic, chili, sweet potatoes. Street snacks are typically sandwiches with hardboiled egg, omelete, fish or beef – or donuts, cake or hardboiled eggs. Frozen juice in small plastic bags is popular among locals.

What to Drink in Guinea-Bissau

Guinea-Bissau doesn’t have a legal drinking/purchasing age. Warga (strong sweet green tea) The people of Guinea-Bissau love to drink a sweet green tea known as “warga”, the non-muslims also enjoy drinking cashew wine or palm wine. There are also possibilities to buy Portuguese beer, wine and soft drinks but these are more expensive. It is recommended that foreigners only drink bottled, filtered or boiled water

Other local foods, or drinks that you recommend? Please add and comment.