15 Vanuatu Food Choices With Easy Local Recipes

You’ve made the decision to travel to Vanuatu, the South Pacific’s “Island of Smiles.” Vanuatu food is worthy of anticipation, too. There’s no doubt that you’re coming for the pleasant climate, the abundance of marine life below the surface, and the stunning beaches, but I have a feeling you’ll really enjoy the local cuisine as well.

Taro, yam, banana, coconut, and seafood are staples in much of Vanuatu food cuisine. The majority of people in Vanuatu raise their own food, so it is not uncommon to see gardens bursting with mango trees, papaya bushes, plantain trees, and sweet potato vines, with the occasional pig or chicken proudly strutting among the produce.

15 Astounding Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

15 Astounding Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

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1. Vatapa from AGFG

1. Vatapa

If you’re a seafood lover, you are going to LOVE this creamy seafood curry recipe. It is so easy to make (and you can use any seafood you like) and is absolutely delicious served with rice for a cozy dinner.

This Vanuatu food recipe is really simple to make. Although I’m sharing my favorite curry sauce recipe with you here, you can use any Indian spices you have to make this sauce so don’t be put off if you don’t have the ones I’ve listed. Similarly, feel free to use any and all of your favorite seafood for this recipe. You can even add chunks of white fish if you prefer.

2. 6 Ingredient Tahini Sauce from Fusion Craftiness

2. 6-Ingredient Tahini Sauce -Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

Tahini Sauce is a garlicky, creamy, nutty condiment that you can drizzle on sandwiches, wraps, sweet potatoes, fries, pakora etc. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

I only know of tahini as an ingredient in traditional hummus. Lately I have been seeing a few ‘Tahini Sauces’. I haven’t tried any of them yet but I am excited about the new uses for this great superfood. Tahini is ground, toasted sesame seeds. It has a thick, creamy texture with a nutty flavor. I really like it and am looking forward to experimenting with this new ingredient with more Vanuatu food recipes.

3. Macaroni With Tahini Sauce from Archana’s Kitchen

3. Macaroni With Tahini Sauce

Macaroni with Tahini sauce is so easy and flavorful. Addition of Tahini sauce makes this pasta delicious and mouth watering.

Macaroni with Tahini sauce is so easy and flavorful. Addition of Tahini sauce makes this pasta delicious and mouth watering. The simplicity and taste makes this as an absolute crowd pleaser. Impress your family and friends with this tasty Italian dish during house parties or weekend night dinners. Try this Vanuatu food recipe and we are sure you will make it again and again.

Serve Macaroni with Tahini sauce along with Pizza Margherita and a Cucumbertini Recipe for a weekend night dinner with friends.

4. Tahini Glazed Doughnuts from Basiland Vogue

4. Tahini Glazed Doughnuts -Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

This vegan tahini doughnut recipe is healthy yet super tasty. This Vanuatu food recipe for doughnuts is made with vanilla protein powder which makes them high in protein so they’re a perfect nutritious and indulgent on-the-go snack.

These vegan tahini doughnuts (or donuts as Americans would spell them) have a perfect balance of flavor as the base has lovely sweet vanilla and cocoa flavor from the protein powder and cocoa powder whilst the glaze has a rich nutty flavor with slight saltiness from the tahini.

5. Khao Neeo Mamuang (Thai Sweet Sticky Rice With Mango) from The Spruce Eats

5. Khao Neeo Mamuang (Thai Sweet Sticky Rice With Mango)

This mango sticky rice is a wonderful and authentic-tasting Thai dessert that’s as good, if not better, than what you find in many Thai restaurants.

The classic Thai dessert known as khao niaow ma muang (mango sticky rice) is heavenly and scrumptious. Famously served as street food in Thailand and at Thai restaurants throughout the world, the taste of this tropical rice pudding is irresistible—and it’s easy to make at home.

This Vanuatu food recipe requires just a few ingredients. Use the ripest mangoes you can find, good-quality coconut milk (avoid “lite” options), and Thai sweet rice. Also called glutinous rice or sticky rice, it can be found at Asian food stores and well-stocked supermarkets.

6. Sakkaravalli Kizhangu Poriyal (Spicy Sweet Potato Roast) from Archana’s Kitchen

6. Sakkaravalli Kizhangu Poriyal -Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

Sakkaravalli Kizhangu Poriyal is a delicious and simple recipe made from sweet potatoes and tossed along with a delicate blend of hing and chili powder. This makes a perfect side dish to be served along with Yeruvalli Kuzhambu and a hot bowl of steamed rice topped with ghee.

This Vanuatu food recipe also known as Sakkaravalli Kizhangu Poriyal is a delicious preparation of the sweet potatoes cooked South Indian style. Even the Bengalis have a similar preparation with a subtle variation and call it Aloo Bhaja.

These potatoes are seasoned with mustard seeds and a few condiments, then slow roasted until the sweet potatoes get coated with a crispy brown texture. The result is a simply delicious Vanuatu food recipe.

7. Cassava Pudding from 196 Flavors

7. Cassava Pudding

Pudding, as it is known in the Pacific, is not at all similar to the popular dessert found in the US, or even the sausage found in the United Kingdom. This Vanuatu food recipe is usually prepared with a vegetable or a root that is grated, then baked.

Taro pudding, as well as pumpkin pudding, can be found in the region. The other kind of popular pudding in the Solomon Islands is cassava pudding. This savory pudding is traditionally served with reef fish. Reef fish, unlike deep sea fish (tuna, snapper, barracuda), is baked whole.

8. Island Sticky Puffs from Puff Pastry

8. Island Sticky Puffs - Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

Get fabulous island flavors like pineapple, coconut and macadamia nuts all baked in flaky puff pastry…and you don’t even have to travel. Definitely a favorite Vanuatu food recipe on the island.

Want more ideas to round-out your Recipe Box?
A lot of great options are in these posts!

9. Orange Juice Cake from Chef Tariq

9. Orange Juice Cake

Orange juice cake is a very quick and simple way to make a very tasty cake. It is a Vanuatu food recipe that will be sure to impress whoever you serve it to. In fact, I made this cake recently, at a barbecue we had here at the house.

It was a perfect day for a day cooking outside, followed by a tasty dessert. This Vanuatu food recipe went over really well with everyone as they ate it up, and asked for more. The glaze is outstanding, and subtle enough in flavor that it really compliments the cake.

A lot of people love this cake for its simplicity, texture similar to a pound cake, and the orange flavor.
Orange might not seem a flavor for dessert, but it has been included in desserts, and sweets for a long time.

10. Sweet Potato Simboro from TTP

10. Sweet Potato Simboroh

I first learned about Simboro from a reader named Benjamin who spent some time in Vanuatu. This comforting side dish is made with a grated starch, like cassava, sweet potato, or yam, wrapped in “island cabbage,” then simmered in coconut milk.

Variations on this Vanuatu food recipe include taro, cassava, plantains, or even yam. If you substitute one of these starches for the sweet potato, the cooking time may vary. Also, keep in mind that the cassava needs to have the tough, woody stems removed before grating. I tried spinach and chard in place of the island cabbage and found the chard to be slightly easier to deal with.

11. Chikkudukaya Vepudu (Broad Beans Masala Poriyal) from Archana’s Kitchen

-Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

Here is a healthy and wholesome dish made from broad beans which takes only 15 minutes to make. It makes a perfect side dish to go along with sambar or rasam, hot steamed rice which you can serve for a quick and healthy weeknight dinner.

This Vanuatu food recipe is a delicious side dish made with Chikkudukaya also known as Broad beans in English and Sem in Hindi. The Chikkudukaya Vepudu is made with simple and yet delicate flavors from the onion, ginger and garlic sauteed along with tomatoes and simple masala.

12. Tanna Chicken from SBS

Vanuatu food

This Tanna chicken recipe is a weeknight wonder meal. This one-pot Vanuatu food recipe is so easy to make and easy to modify.

There’s nothing more satisfying than a Vanuatu food dinner recipe that doesn’t require more than one pot. It makes cleanup a breeze which is one of the big reasons to love one-pot recipes.

This Tanna chicken rice recipe is just so good. It’s really a weeknight wonder, and it’s so versatile.

13. Kava Kava Drink from Travel Food Atlas

-Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

Kava (also known as kava kava) is a drink consumed throughout the Pacific islands, made from the ground roots of the kava plant. It’s purpose offers some of the most interesting insights into traditions, culture and the rituals among the cultures who consume it.

Kava is a delicacy in Fiji, Tonga, Hawaii, Micronesia, Samoa and Vanuatu where it is mostly drunk by men in a diverse variety of ways.

The Vanuatu food recipe consists of the root of the kava plant boiled and strained to produce a substance similar to alcohol.

14. Coconut Crab and Seafood Platter from SBS


14. Coconut Crab and Seafood Platter

For the best results, use the freshest seafood you can afford for this Vanuatu food recipe. It is served with two sauces – both have lime juice and chili, but one is made with rich, sweet coconut cream, and the other with seawater (though at home, you can used salted water).

15. Kodava Kummu Curry (Coorg Style Mushroom Curry) from Archana’s Kitchen

15. Kodava Kummu Curry (Coorg Style Mushroom Curry) - Recipes Created From Vanuatu Food

Give this lip smacking and yet super simply 15 minute Coorg Mushroom Curry a try! It’s delicately flavored with green, red chilies and black peppercorn. This Vanuatu food recipe makes a great side dish along with a bowl of hot ghee rice or even a malabar parotta.

Kodava Kummu Curry Recipe – Spicy Mushroom Gravy is an authentic recipe that hails from kodava district which is a part of Coorg. Mushrooms are locally known as kummu in their local language. The curry is made with ground coconut, jeera seeds and garlic that is simmered with sautéed onions and tomatoes.

Mushroom is a good source protein and it is filled with dietary fiber. It is also low in calories and will make an excellent diet for weight loss.

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