Everyone has different tastes in food, but there is one thing on which we can all agree. Food tastes better when it’s locally made with love and care. Barbados is a beautiful tropical island with tasty authentic dishes made on the island with love and care for you to enjoy. And we believe our vibrant and colourful culture makes our cuisine even more delicious.

You might be wondering which Barbados dishes you should try when visiting Barbados. So, we’ve compiled a list of the eight must-try local Barbados foods and dishes.

Must-try local Barbados foods

Local Barbados food

Fresh Fish

Seafood is a local cuisine staple and one of the best ways to enjoy local Barbados foods. It is readily available at restaurants and there is plenty to choose from. Some popular fish that are available to eat in Barbados include:

  1. Flying fish is the national fish of Barbados and is often served fried, grilled or pickled. It can be found in many local restaurants and sold at fish markets throughout the island.
  2. Mahi-mahi – this fish is also known as dorado and is typically grilled, baked or fried. It is readily available at many restaurants in Barbados.
  3. Tuna – tuna is often grilled or served raw in sushi or sashimi dishes. It can be found at many restaurants in Barbados and is also sold at fish markets.
  4. Swordfish – this fish is typically grilled or pan-fried and is a popular menu item at many local seafood restaurants.
  5. Kingfish – this fish is often grilled or fried and readily available at island fish markets.

You can purchase fish at many of the island’s fish markets. The most popular fish market is the Oistins Fish Market, located on the island’s south coast. This market is open daily and is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, especially for the Friday night Fish Fry. Additionally, many supermarkets and grocery stores sell fresh fish and pre-packaged frozen fish.

Macaroni pie

Macaroni Pie

Barbadian macaroni pie, sometimes simply called “pie” by locals, is an unquestionably delicious delicacy. All ages enjoy this meal, which is a regular choice at buffets and formal occasions featuring local Barbados foods.

Cooked macaroni pasta, cheddar cheese, onions, fresh herbs and spices, egg, milk, ketchup, and mustard are all ingredients in macaroni pie. The ingredients are combined, added to a casserole dish, covered with additional cheese, and baked.

The end product is cooked pasta that melts in your mouth and is flavourful and cheesy. Often, this meal is served with salad on the side with either meat or fish.

Flying fish and cou cou local Barbados food

Courtesy of the Crane Resorts

Cou Cou and Flying Fish

Flying fish and Cou Cou, the national dish of Barbados, is something you must have when here. It is the Barbadian version of the Sunday roast.

Locally fished in the warm Caribbean waters, the flying fish is either fried or steam-cooked in a flavourful sauce after being seasoned with traditional Bajan herbs and spices. It is paired with Cou Cou, a traditional dish consisting of okra and cornmeal.

Pudding and souse

Pudding and Souse

One of Barbados’ most popular and traditional meal pairings is pudding and souse, and when on the island, you can try sweet and spicy variants to decide which you prefer.

In Barbados, steamed sweet potatoes with onions, salt, and pepper are called pudding. Souse is a dish made with pickled pork. The pickled pork and the pudding are skillfully blended to produce a dish that oozes flavour.

Even though pudding and souse are frequently in demand, the ideal place to pick this up could require some research. When in doubt, go to the seller who has the most customers!

Fish cakes local Barbados food


These fish cakes, a delicacy in the Caribbean and one of the most popular local Barbados foods, are customarily made with flour, shredded salted cod or white fish, and various spices. They are pillowy, golden-brown delicacies that go well with pepper sauce, ranch, barbecue sauce, and other condiments that suit your palate.

You can also make a “bread and two” sandwich, which consists of two fishcakes eaten with a local salt bread, just like some locals do.



Roti are a popular food in Barbados and throughout the Caribbean. They are a type of flatbread that is typically stuffed with savoury ingredients and served as a meal. In Barbados, rotis are usually made with flour-based dough and filled with curried meat or vegetables. The most common types of rotis found in Barbados are:

  1. Chicken Roti is the most popular type of roti in Barbados and is typically filled with curried chicken, potatoes, and chickpeas.
  2. Beef Roti are similar to chicken roti. This variety is filled with curried beef, potatoes, and chickpeas.
  3. Vegetable Roti – this type of roti is filled with various vegetables such as spinach, pumpkin, and carrots and is a popular option for vegetarians and vegans.
  4. Shrimp Roti – this roti is filled with curried shrimp, potatoes, and chickpeas and is a favourite among seafood lovers.

Rotis are usually eaten by hand, tearing off pieces of the bread and dipping them in the curry filling. They can be found at many local restaurants, fast food outlets, including Chefette, and street vendors throughout Barbados.


Courtesy of Visit Barbados


Conkies are another popular meal found on the island of Barbados. This dish contains cornmeal, pumpkin, coconut, raisins, spices, and sugar. Conkies are rolled into banana leaves and steamed until done.

You may often see this delicacy around traditional national periods such as Barbados Independence commemorated in November or during the Crop Over Season at traditional events. If you fall in love with conkies, you can make them at home too.



Bakes are a type of bread that is popular in Barbados and throughout the Caribbean. They are made from a simple dough of flour, water, sugar, salt, and baking powder, which is then fried in oil until golden brown. Bakes can be eaten on their own as a snack or served as a side dish with a variety of savoury dishes. In Barbados, some popular ways to eat bakes include:

  1. Fried fish and bakes – this is a classic Barbadian dish, where the bakes are served alongside fried fish, usually with a side of hot sauce or pepper sauce.
  2. Saltfish and bakes – another popular combination, where the bakes are served with salted codfish cooked in a tomato-based sauce.
  3. Bakes and cheese – this is a simple but delicious snack, where the bakes are sliced in half and filled with melted cheese.
  4. Bakes and ham – a popular breakfast option, where the bakes are served with ham and eggs.

Bakes can be found at many local bakeries and street vendors throughout Barbados and are usually served warm and fresh out of the fryer. They are a beloved food in Barbados and are often enjoyed as a comforting, filling meal or snack.

If you get the chance to visit this beautiful island, don’t forget to try out these local Barbados foods and dishes! The foodie in you will be delighted!

Content Disclaimer

The information above is provided only for information purposes. The contents of this blog post are not intended to amount to advice. Residence Barbados disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this newsletter.

Interested in learning more about how to make Barbados a home away from home? Call the Residence Barbados team today at +1 246 230 4982, complete the contact form or email at contact@residencebarbados.com.