All About Bahamian Cuisine

On the second night of your dream Bahamian vacation, you’re sitting in one of Nassau’s many beach-side restaurants or perhaps at a groovy spot at the world-famous Fish Fry, immersing yourself in the relaxing island atmosphere and swaying to the tropical beat that fills the air. Suddenly, the waitress hands you a menu, and while looking through it, you become amazed at the long list of exotic dishes that seem mouth-watering and absolutely delicious! “Hmmm. I think I’ll try the tropical conch salad,” you say, thinking deeply as the palm trees sway in the gentle breeze. “Oh! Or, maybe the cracked conch and fries!” Well, with Bahamian cuisine containing so many interesting dishes, we can’t blame you for being unsure about what to order!

Residing in an island nation with a diverse marine life, Bahamians frequently use seafood, such as lobster, conch, and crab, to create various finger-licking, tantalizing dishes. Due to close proximity and historical migration, Bahamian cuisine shares many side dishes with that of the American South, most notably grits, which is commonly eaten with eggs, corned beef, tuna, or sausage at breakfast. Typically, Bahamian dishes are seasoned with a variety of spices, giving them a rich and flavorful taste, and many desserts and drinks contain sweet local fruit.

In this blog post, we’ll further explain Bahamian cuisine and introduce you to some local dishes that are definitely worth trying during your trip to The Bahamas!!!


Conch Fritters
Conch Salad

The glistening, crystal clear waters of The Bahamas are beautiful and serene, and because they’re teeming with tropical marine life, seafood is a staple in the country’s eclectic cuisine.

Conch, a medium-large sea snail found throughout Bahamian waters, is commonly referred to as the national food, as it is a local delicacy and is featured in some of the country’s most popular dishes. One such dish is conch salad — a scrumptious concoction of diced conch, green peppers, and onions, perfectly drenched in savory lime or orange juice. At conch salad stands throughout the country, you can savor the intoxicating aroma of conch salad while it’s being prepared just for you!! However, if raw conch doesn’t appeal to your taste buds, you can try conch fritters and cracked conch, both of which are battered and fried until they’re crisp and golden brown. Bahamians are also fond of a hearty dished called conch chowder, in which tender, stewed conch marinates in a rich, tomato-based soup.

Spiny lobster, locally known as crawfish, is also popular among Bahamians, who eat it boiled, steamed, or diced into salads. Bahamians also fry and boil a variety of fish, such as grouper and snapper, and mince crab into tasty salads or rice.


Peas and Rice
Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Due to its abundant protein and intense flavor, peas and rice is a frequently-eaten side dish in Caribbean countries, and The Bahamas is no exception! Here, peas and rice is considered the staple side dish, often being served with chicken, pork, fish, and other tasty meats.

n addition to peas and rice, Bahamians also pair meals with baked macaroni and cheese, which is sliced into square pieces and seasoned with green peppers, onions, and other herbs and spices. To thicken the macaroni and cheese, Bahamians add eggs and evaporated milk, then bake it until the cheese is hardened and the macaroni is perfectly brown, yet tender.

Often served with breakfast dishes, such as chicken souse and stew fish, Johnny Cake is a popular Bahamian side dish, as it adds a burst of flavor while containing few ingredients. Much like America, potato salad is a common side dish in The Bahamas, as is cole slaw, which is sometimes sweetened with sugar.


Goombay Punch
Sky Juice

When you’re tired after a long adventure in the hot Bahamian sun, you can replenish your energy with a refreshing glass of switcha, made from succulent lemons and limes. You can also drink Goombay Punch, a Bahamian soft drink that will instantly inundate your palate with a blast of sweet pineapple flavor!

Since this is The Bahamas, where good times roll with the tide, alcohol is commonly found in local drinks, many of which are sweetened with fruit juices. Sky juice, also referred to as gully wash, is an iconic Bahamian alcoholic drink comprised of coconut water, gin, condensed milk, and cinnamon. Another drink, Goombay Smash, features rum, pineapple juice and coconut, while Bahama Mama contains orange juice, dark rum, coconut rum, pineapple juice, lime juice, and grenadine.


Guava Duff
Rum Cake

Arguably, The Bahamas’ favorite dessert is guava duff, made by folding guava into a sweet dough, then boiling or steaming it. Bahamians often top it with a butter and rum sauce, giving it an extra dash of smoothness, sweetness, and richness.

Rum cakes are also popular in The Bahamas, and during our Bahama Bonanza Cultural tour, you can sample the scrumptious rum cakes of The Bahamas Rum Cake Factory, located in the heart of historic downtown Nassau. Marinated in Ole Nassau rum, their cakes are available in numerous mouth-watering flavors, including chocolate, banana, Irish cream, caramel, coconut, and more!

If you’d like to sink your teeth into The Bahamas’ amazing cuisine, book a tour on our website,, or email us at [email protected]!!