Argentine Cuisine – Top 17 Argentine Foods You’ve Gotta Try

One of my favorite ways to get to know a destination is by sampling its foods. Argentina is a huge country and it has remarkably good awesome Argentine Cuisine like steak, stellar ice cream, mouthwatering pastas, and dozens of other savory items I’d never tried before. It’s been a delicious, belt-busting ride. We will cover Argentine Breakfast here

Argentine Cuisine – Here are the top 17 Argentine foods you have to try

1. Argentine Cuisine – Steak & Parrilla

There’s much more to Argentine cuisine than steak, but Argentines eat beef like it’s their job and it’s not hard to see why. It’s high-quality, tender, delicious, and far less expensive than it is in the US. Parrillas (restaurants that specialize in steak) are everywhere. There are so many cuts of steak offered, but don’t get overwhelmed when you look at a menu. It’s all tasty. After being here for over two month now, I can say with confident that grass-fed beef definitely is better.

Argentine Cuisine

Argentine Cuisine

Argentine Cuisine

Argentine Cuisine

2. Argentine Cuisine – Milanesa

If you’ve traveled in the southern US, you might have tried chicken fried steak, steak that’s battered and fried. A milanesa is similar, but very thin, a bit tougher, and more lightly breaded. Milanesas often come on sandwiches and the steak can be replaced by other meats.

3. Choripan & 4. Lomito

A choripan (on the left in the photo below) is a tasty sandwich made of chorizo (sausage) and pan (bread). Add a little chimichurri sauce and you’re in for a treat. It’s simple and delicious. Lomitos are amazing steak sandwiches with lettuce, tomato, and whatever sauces you decide to add. You can also get a lomo completo (or lomito completo), which usually comes with cheese, ham, and egg on it. The best lomito I had was just outside the nature reserve in Buenos Aires.

Argentine Cuisine

Argentine Cuisine

5. Migas

These tasty little sandwiches are layers of ham, cheese, and very thinly sliced bread. We made the mistake of getting too many for a bus ride and got sick of them. But the once we had were good. Argentines eat them as a snack between lunch (at 1 or 2 pm) and dinner (at 9 or 10 pm).

6. Pasta

Because of its Italian heritage, Argentina has amazing pastas. They’re always homemade, even in restaurants, and generally inexpensive. We’re tried everything from gnocchi to ravioli to tortellini in cities across the country. It’s all been delicious. If you’re ordering pasta in Argentina, look closely at the menu; often, the pasta itself has one price and the sauce costs extra.

Argentine Cuisine

Argentine Cuisine

7. Argentine Cuisine – Pizza

You can definitely see the Italian influence when you walk down the street in any Argentine city — there are pizza places everywhere. And it’s not Domino’s-style, either. It’s homemade, well-seasoned, and delicious. The great thing about pizza is you can get it any time of day. So if you don’t want to wait to eat dinner until 9 pm like the locals do, order a pizza.


8. Empanadas

The quality, style, and flavor of empanadas vary from region to region. These delicious pastries can be filled with meat and olives, ham and cheese, spinach, corn, and even apples. With the exception of the subpar one I had in Iguazu Falls National Park, the empanadas I sampled were quite delicious. My favorites were the roquefort one (below) I had in Buenos Aires and the many flavors I tried in Trelew.


9. Trout

In the Lakes Region of Argentina, trout is a local speciality. It’s generally more expensive than we like our meals to be (though still not as much as it would be in the US), so we only tried it once. The dish we ordered came with a mushroom sauce and a side of amazing grilled veggies (a welcome alternative to french fries). It was delicious — one of the best meals we had in Argentina.

Argentine Cuisine

Argentine Cuisine

10. Venison

Growing up in Texas, I’ve had my fair share of quality venison. But the deer meat we ordered in San Martin de los Andes was some of the most interesting, most tender venison I’ve tasted. It was served with spaetzel, which was a nice compliment.


11. Argentine Cuisine – Panchos

I’m not sure this qualifies as a national food of Argentina, but there are pancho (hot dog) restaurants all over country. Curiosity got the best of me in Mendoza and I decided I had to know what the fuss was all about. I ordered this super pancho, complete with lettuce, tomatoes, and cheese. The verdict? The taste was good, but I felt a bit sick afterwards.


12. Ice Cream / Helado

The helado (gelato-style ice cream) in Argentina is some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had. It’s creamy, rich, and delicious. Plus there are tons of flavors and you don’t have to pay extra to get more than one on your cone.


13. Baked Goods

Argentina has some of the best baked goods — from cookies and cakes to bread and scones — I’ve ever had. The country is well-populated with panaderias (bakeries) where you can get them fresh, so it’s no wonder that Argentines eat more sweets per capita than anyone else. Restaurants serve fresh bread, which they’ve either baked themselves or bought from a nearby panaderia.

14. Argentine Medialunas

Croissant-like medialunas come in two varieties — plain and slightly sweet. When they’re fresh, they’re quite good. But since these compose the main (and usually only) course of Argentine breakfasts, I’ve had my share of mediocre medialunas in hostels and cafes.

15. Chocolate

Bariloche in Patagonia is the chocolate capital of Argentina, which you’ll know after just one walk down the chocolate shop-covered street. We sampled a lot of chocolate in Bariloche and I especially enjoyed the more exciting flavors like mint and honey. But I have to say I still like Russian and German chocolate the best.


16. Argentine Dulce de Leche

This thick, sweet, milky sauce falls somewhere between jelly and caramel. It’s hugely popular here. Argentines eat it on bread and medialunas, but you can also find it in cookies and ice cream. Personally, I think it’s a little too sweet, but Elizabeth loves it.

17. Argentine Alfajores

Argentina is know for these cookie sandwiches, which usually come filled with dulce de leche. The best ones are from a bakery, but you can also get them pre-packaged in supermarkets. The best version I had was from a bakery in Buenos Aires and was dipped in white chocolate. The weirdest thing about alfajores is they’re not just desserts; the buses in Argentina serve them with coffee as a sugar-filled breakfast.

Argentina doesn’t have a ton of variety in its cuisine; spicy food, for example, is nearly impossible to find. But it sticks to what it does best — mouthwatering steaks and sandwiches, delicious pizzas, and sensational bake goods — and will satisfy any foodie’s cravings.

Want to try your hand at Argentine cooking? Check out Argentina Cooks! Treasured Recipes from the Nine Regions of Argentina and Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way.


  1. By Jet Set Life on

    Wow – this food looks amazing. You’re right, the way to get to know a place is to sample the cuisine. This will be great to share with my readers. Thanks for the information.

  2. By Jared on

    Brought back a lot of memories! Necochea (not far from Mar del Plata) has a huge candy industry as well, I never went to Bariloche, but sweets marked “Bariloche” are available all over.

    I stayed at a place a half block from a dulce de leche factory in Bahia Blanca, and agonized over the aroma of carmelizing milk every morning I was there.

    A couple other sweets I’m definitely looking up next time I go back: Dulce de membrillo – like a hardened jam made out of quince, we ate it on bread or medialunas. The other is “mantecol”, this is a candy similar to the filling of “butterfingers”, but a little less sweet and more nutty.

  3. By Angie on

    Great selection of Argentine foods! I’m an Argentine native and I can’t think of anything you left out, only quince jam and quince jelly which someone else mentioned in their posts. And elderberry jam, which is huge in the South and very hard to find in the States. I bring quite a few with me every time I visit. I’m in South Florida and was lucky to find a small ice cream shop that is run by a couple from Argentina and they make gelatto the way we have it down there. Yum!!! Must be this diet I’m in that made me read this post. Thanks for sharing this!

  4. By Fiona on

    Love it! Man I miss Argentina. I livede in BA for 5 months and gained a a wee bit of weight purely because of all the amazing food! If you are in Argentina around the 25th of May, one thing that you should try is Locro. It’s a special stew served on public holidays :)

  5. By Graciela on

    Hi! guys and thank you for visiting Argentina, I live in Buenos Aires and it`s true we have great quality in food, you can find here any kind of meals, oriental, spanish, italian, russian, danish, german, thai, japanese, and more. Chocolate en rama in Bariloche its great it melts in your mouth. You also have to try humitas en chala, tamales, puchero, mondongo, matambre, mollejas, morcillas, locro, and so much more. thank you both for such a kind description of Argentina and come again soon!

    • By Pablo on

      Tacos is from Mexico…
      You also have to try “panqueques con dulce de leche” and “alfajores de micena” ;-)

  6. By hoyt compound bow on

    vocable  vocably  vocalic  vocally  vocoder  vodouns  voguers  voguing.
    valley   valors   valour   valses   valued   valuer   values   valuta.
    rouser   rouses   rousts   routed   router   routes   rouths   rovers.

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