The sun, sand and sea are obvious reasons that tourists visit our shores, but our status as a ‘culinary capital of the Caribbean’ means that we are every foodie’s dream destination.   Cayman may be teeming with globally-inspired restaurants, but we also have you covered if you want to taste the genuine flavours of the Caribbean.  As you plan your next trip to Cayman, make sure you seek out and try these popular and authentic Caribbean dishes.


Photo by Chelsea Tennant.

It’s easy to say that the most iconic flavour and cooking style to represent the Caribbean is jerk.  Native to Jamaica, this spiced marinade is predominantly made with allspice, ginger, garlic, thyme and fiery scotch bonnet peppers.  Roadside jerk stands can be found in every district, and they make their presence known by the flavourful smoke billowing out of their drums.  Visit the popular Red Bay Jerk stand and get a takeaway order of their fantastic jerk chicken & pork with hard dough bread or stop into Peppers Bar & Grill along the Seven Mile Strip for a casual, seated dining experience.

Fish Fry

A flaky, white fish is ideal when frying fish, so a whole snapper or fillets of mahi mahi or wahoo are commonly used in Cayman.  These locally caught fish are seasoned, lightly floured, and then fried to golden perfection before being served with spicy escovitch and a selection of starchy sides, such as fritters/ Johnny cakes (fried bread), rice & beans or fried plantains.  These are best enjoyed at small seaside huts, so take a drive to Heritage Kitchen in West Bay or Grape Tree Café in Bodden Town.

West Indian Curry

Photo by Chelsea Tennant.

Caribbean curries are made from a turmeric-based curry powder that gives them a distinctive yellow hue, so don’t expect them to taste similar to a tomato-based Indian curry or chilli-based Thai curry.  Other spices used to create Caribbean curry powders include cumin, coriander, and fenugreek, but islands like Jamaica, Guyana and Trinidad still have distinct differences in how they incorporate more seasoning.  Visit Singh’s Roti Shop in George Town for all things curried the Trinidadian way, including the most amazing Doubles and a light roti filled with goat, shrimp or chicken.  You can even compare both styles when you visit Tomfoodery in Camana Bay as they serve a vegan Trinidadian Chickpea Curry and a respected Jamaican Curry Chicken.


If you read my last blog you’ll know how versatile and loved conch is across the region.  The Bahamas is well known for their love of this ingredient, but many islands serve conch fritters making it the most popular preparation.  Restaurants simply deep fry a batter of minced conch, peppers and onions then serve it with a dipping sauce – jerk mayo being the most commonly found here.  Be on the lookout for other delicious conch dishes on island, including Caymanian stew conch, cracked conch and conch chowder/soup.

Ultimately, these four dishes are the best way to welcome your palate back to the islands and I hope you choose Cayman as your next culinary destination. 

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