While Venezuela’s traditional cuisine of beef, beans and plantain may not appeal to many people on restricted diets, fear not: the abundance of tropical fruit, maize and cassava dishes, and wonderful seafood should make up for it.
Fresh fruit juices and batidos (smoothies) can be found in most cafés and restaurants as well as street stalls. Batidos are made by blending fresh fruit, ice, a little water and sugar. If you are avoiding refined sugar, be sure to ask for yours “sin azúcar”. My favourites were strawberry or mixed fruit which they called “frupa” (possibly an abbreviation of fruit punch).
Anyone on a gluten-free diet should try “arepas” – small maize pancakes served as an accompaniment to breakfast or main meals, or with fillings such as egg and tomato or 'reina pepiada' (chicken, mayo and avocado) – a good alternative to a sandwich. I found them reminiscent of potato pancakes and a good alternative to bread.
On some Venezuelan beaches, you can buy small pots of clams and/or prawns with lime and chilli sauce usually mixed and shaken together cocktail-style by the seller. Oysters are another beach treat; the sellers carry them along the beach in buckets; they're usually armed with a knife to cut them open with, a plate to serve them on, and plenty of limes to squeeze on them… yum!
In restaurants near the coast and on Margarita Island, grilled fish such as Red Snapper is very good, as is grilled fresh seafood. When we were there, lobster also seemed to be popular, but a bit too fiddly for me...
This info was based on Kathy and Uwe's holiday - Easter 2009
If you have any other information about eating in Venezuela, please contact us