Although vegetarian and other special diets are still largely unfamiliar in Cuba, we’ll do everything we can to meet your needs. We talk with waiters and chefs in advance and announce each meal’s menu to our guests to ensure that the choice is allergen-free and otherwise acceptable. Usually, at least white rice and vegetables will be available. That said, those might be your only options at times, so if you follow a strict vegan diet, for instance, you might find your choices limited and repetitive. The following represent reasonable options for vegetarians in Cuba:
Tropical fruits such as bananas, coconut, mangoes, and papaya can be found in abundance. You might also enjoy Cuba's most popular fruit, the mamey, virtually unknown in the U.S.
Starchy, flavorful plantains are used in many local recipes.
Rice and beans is a reliable staple.
Many locals enjoy incidentally vegan salads made from shredded cabbage, lettuce, sliced tomatoes, onions, or avocados, often dressed with vinegar or lemon juice.
If you eat eggs, dairy, and wheat, breakfast should present few, if any, challenges. And the coffee and cocoa are delicious!
Some vegans recommend bringing along a bottle or two of hot sauce to keep meals interesting.