Sometimes when describing Chilean fast food, imagine its inception: It probably began with someone being curado – drunk, getting the munchies, and whipping up your favorite Chilean sandwich. At least that’s what I think of; it just seems like someone would eat it when they’re drunk.
If you have the drunchies (drunk munchies) or as it’s known in Chile – el bajon, there are some good options. Generally, these are fast foods found at carts and small drives and restaurants open late conveniently positioned around places with a lot of nightlife and populated areas like outside of some metro stations. Some bars will have a couple of these items on their menu fully equipped for that moment when you fall into el bajon. These are our picks!
Chile’s 10 Best Drunk Foods – Pa’l Bajón
Arguably the best food for the the bajon
. Who doesn’t want a hot dog smothered in avocado and mayonnaise topped with chopped tomatoes!? The Completo Italiano is where it’s at or try the AS for change.
|The Chacarero, also a signature sandwich – sliced grilled beef, fresh avocado, tomatoes and cooked green beans. (Photo: Chantal Martineau)
This is one of Chile’s strongest playing cards when it comes to drunk foods…or regular food for that matter. There is a lot to choose from but the barros luco and churrasco are always be staples. Usually eaten with a fork and knife because it’s hard to wrap your mouth around these guys without looking like a shark going in for the kill. On a drunk food basis, just go for it.
|The “Chorrillana Porteña”
A bed of fries, strips of beef, sausages, sauteed onions, sunny side up eggs, and ketchup and mustard to dip everything in – you can’t deny someone created this under the influence.
This is my favorite option in Valparaiso if you’re at a bar that has this tasty dish on their menu. Valparaiso makes chorillanas like you’re supposed to, and it’s no wonder since it originated there! The same creators still have their restaurant open at the end of the same graffiti lined alleyway – La J. Cruz. This is a dish you gorge on, and must should be shared with at least one other person.
Speaking of which, there is no scarcity of fries in Chile. None. Many would say that the fries may be the greasiest item on the carrito fried in mystery oil, following this ranking would be the empanada de queso and sopaipilla.
Fries alone or make it a combo with some gooey cheese and toppings is always hits the spot and wins the award for most universal. I love the Tijuana fries at California Cantina.
5. Fried Empanadas
Since we’re fryin’ everything, a must-mention is the fried empanada, especially the cheese-filled kind. You’ll also see those sold next to the sopaipillas and spring rolls at that shady looking food card that your sober brain would tell you to avoid. Sometimes more dough than cheese, you might need a couple, but it’s just a couple gambas (one hundred peso coins).
If you’re looking for something to snack on before heading home, grab a sopaipilla – those deep-fried, golden discs made with flour and zapallo. Slap some ketchup, mustard, mayo, or pebre and you’ve just upgraded your order.
At food carts, they definitely skimp on the zapaillo so don’t compare these to your Chilean friend’s mom’s sopaipillas that she makes on rainy day.
7. Anticuchos and Choripanes
|Choripanes – Chorizo in a bun, usually with batido/marraqueta
After a night of dancing and drinking, you know you want something to munch on. Anticuchos (grilled on skewers) and choripanes are here to the rescue with your daily dose of protein with a side of carbs. Be careful with these though, dog meat has been found in small towns, or so the urban legend whispers.
8. Hamburguesas de Soya and Falafel
I love the lanas
that sell vegan and vegetarian products outside of bars, clubs, and Metros. If your noticing that you need to lay off the completos
or the pisco
, drop the completos
first and opt for your veggie based friends.I once had tacos de soya
, and they were really good. It was as if the stars had collided on that one day to make that happen because I never saw tacos de soya
again…or they got shut down. Either one makes is possible.
|See how great this pizza looks, the ones from the carritos in Chile look nothing like this.
On one of my first outings in Bellavista as a study abroad student, I came across these carts with complete ovens, gas tank and all attached to it, only to sell individual pizzas. Sometimes you see these ovens sitting in the trunk of a car. I haven’t tried these because I might have too be more tipsy for this option since it’s just out of my comfort zone, but I’ve been told they’re good.
Hamburgers topped with avocado, tomato and mayo. Not the best burgers in town, but it does the job just as well. Made with probably the cheapest ground beef you can find and reminiscent of the even more mysterious burger meat for $100 pesos each (less than a quarter) at the grocery store. When fried, it practically disintegrates into oil.
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