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Seven Must-Try Foods When Traveling To Antigua

By Danielle Dorsey

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Antigua is a foodie’s paradise, offering Caribbean staples like jerk chicken and roti, fresh seafood, and local delicacies for tourists to try. Wash it all down with a Wadadli beer or a fruity rum to complete your experience. 

If traveling to the Caribbean islands are in your plans and you’re thinking about stopping by Antigua and Barbuda, we’ve compiled seven mouthwatering must-try dishes.

1. Fungi

Sometimes called Antiguan polenta or grits, fungi is the Caribbean island’s national dish and is traditionally served for breakfast. Fungi is made by forming a cornmeal and okra paste into balls and typically eaten with stews and meats. Saltfish, or flaky white fish that has been cured in salt, is a favorite pairing for fungi. 

2. Conch

The Caribbean is known for its popular seafood cuisine and Antigua is no different. Conch (pronounced conk) is meat that’s been taken from the inside of conch shells (tourists will see plenty decorating Antigua’s beaches). It has a slightly chewy texture and tastes similar to clams. It is often included in curries, fritters, chowders, and ceviches. 

3. Ducana

Ducana is Antigua’s version of a tamale. The dough is made of coconut, pumpkin, and grated sweet potato, then wrapped in a banana leaf and boiled in water before being seasoned with cinnamon. It’s commonly served with saltfish, but doubles as a satisfying vegan dish when eaten on its own. 

4. Macaroni pie 

Macaroni pie is a popular side dish in Antigua, but one thing that distinguishes it from America’s macaroni and cheese is that it is served cold and sliced.


5. Black pineapple 

Black pineapple was originally brought to Antigua by the indigenous Arawak people who arrived by boat from Venezuela. It’s much sweeter than regular pineapple and the skin remains greenish even when it’s ripe.

6. Souse

Souse is a cold, spicy soup that’s prepared with pickled pig’s feet and other pork offal that’s traditionally eaten on Sundays

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Behold Antiguan "goat water" (which is thankfully not at all "watery"), a rich, hearty stew with notes of clove and cinnamon. We loved this dish! Perhaps even more so because we found it in an unexpected place—a beach bar crawling with day-tripping cruise shippers—and because it'll always remind us of naming our firstborn. Let me explain … • It was the type of place we might usually shun, but instead we went there twice—first at the behest of the Jamaican security guard we’d befriended at our apartment complex, and then because of Esther. Esther was the chef at the beach bar, and she promised us goat water—a traditional dish normally served on Saturdays only—on a Tuesday, because we’d asked (begged?) nicely. Or maybe it was because I was pregnant at the time, and Esther also promised to give us a good baby name if we returned the next day. • At the scheduled time, our goat water was ready and waiting. Esther served us, then offered up a name for our (as yet) unborn son: Isiah. “But you call him Siah,” she instructed. We dug in at the edge of the crowded beach, perched on a wooden picnic table across from a drunk woman with a missing flip-flop. No matter. The dish, studded with little dumplings and served with polenta-like fungee, was absolutely delicious. • Alas, “Siah” is still up for grabs. Don’t tell Esther🙊. • #antiguanfood #dickensonbay #caribbeanfood #goatwater #localfood #babynames #babymoon #travelforfood #caribbean #islandeats #stjohns #yummyfood #instafood #igtravel #islandfood #traveldeeper #goexplore #eatyourworld

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7. Goat water

Don’t let the name turn you off, goat water is actually a hearty stew that’s often eaten for breakfast. The goat meat is slow-cooked with cinnamon and clove, which makes for a fragrant and filling meal.

For an exclusive guide to where to eat, what to do, and what events to attend in the Caribbean, join Travel Noire Plus, your key to all popular travel destinations.

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