Andean Delicacy – Roasted Cuy (Guinea Pig)

In Exotic Foods, Peru on October 3, 2009 at 10:20 pm

Roasted cuyDon’t cringe, because this, I tell you, is one of the best roasted meat you can find. Crispy on the outside, meat sparse though tender and fragrant on the inside.

To the ancient Incas (mostly in Peru and Ecuador), the cuy was a sacred animal only eaten by the nobles. Highly worshipped by the Incas, it was used in rituals and sacrifices. These days, the Andean people still keep them as pets and eat them at home.

The minute we were in Peru, we had to try some. Restaurante Tradiciones de Lago in Puno served up a tantalizing platter of perfectly roasted cuy that came straight off the grill.

There are several ways of cooking the cuy, from baking it,  stewing it with a spicy sauce, to frying with onions. Different regions in Peru specialize in different style of preparing the cuy. You can easily get skinned cuy in the markets, bring it home and clear its organs before cooking it.


Check out Recipe Wiki for some recipes on how to prepare a roasted  cuy from scratch.

  1. I must say…the first picture you posted for this article is great. The second one made me cringe! I’m planning on taking a trip to South America and I’ve heard of Cuy, but my god!!! Those little guys are so cute! It seems like you got the cuy in a restaraunt…not on the street, right?

    • hey Lindsey, yes I got it in a restaurant. They don’t usually sell it on the street, it’s usually not the cheapest item on the menu. It tastes awfully good, like rabbit meat! Have a good trip in South America, I loved it!

  2. Hello Nellie, I’m in Grenoble, France now. I’m peruvian and the first picture turn me hungry, hahaha. And yes, cuy is delicious but it’s always a little strange look at them alive before eat them.

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