Top 10 Must-Try Foods and Drinks in St. Lucia

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St. Lucia is not only a feast for the eyes, but a tour for the taste buds as well. Given the setting, visitors might not be surprised to see tropical fruits and exotic spices, but the way they come together to make tasty cultural delights will leave you wanting recipes.

Green Figs and Salt Fish, The National Dish of St. Lucia

Credit Jamie Werner

The “green figs” are actually boiled, unripe bananas, served alongside salted, flaked fish that is sautéed with onions, sweet peppers and various spices. Eaten for both breakfast and lunch, this dish is made complete with grated cucumber salad.

Where to find it: The Balcony Restaurant on Brazil Street, near Derek Walcott Square; Castries Market off of John Compton Highway, between Jeremie and Peynier streets (5-to-10-minute walk from the cruise terminal). Castries Market is a bustling open-air local market that has been around since 1894 and was ranked as one of National Geographic’s top 10 food markets in the world. The market is closed on Sundays.

Cocoa Tea

Credit Jamie Werner

St. Lucia has a breakfast drink that will satisfy a sweet tooth and a caffeine craving. Similar to hot cocoa, but Lucian in essence, it’s flavored with grated local cocoa sticks, made from roasted cacao, nutmeg, bay leaf and cinnamon. Add hot milk and sweeten to your liking.

Where to find it: Castries Market (5-to-10-minute walk from the cruise terminal).

Bakes (Also Known as Floats)

Credit Jamie Werner

These white-flour, airy rounds of doughy deliciousness are fried and served as a light snack or as a side, and are best when hot. Eat them stuffed with cheese or salted fish, or eat them plain.

Where to find it: Castries Market (5-to-10-minute walk); The Pink Plantation House, (10-minute cab ride).

Piton Beer

Credit Jamie Werner

Named for the majestic Gros Piton and Petit Piton mountains in Soufriere, this pilsner lager was developed in 1992 at the Windward & Leeward Brewery Limited, owned by Heineken. You can tour the brewery, but you need to arrange the tour ahead of time, and you cannot actually taste the beer while you are touring, which (kind of) takes away some of the fun. So we recommend sipping a cold Piton at any of the restaurants or bars in town; they all serve it.

Where to find it: Rum Therapy Bar & Treatment Centre, Pointe Seraphine (10-minute cab ride).

Coconut Water

Credit Jamie Werner

All you need is a young coconut, a machete and a straw. Fortunately, vendors on every roadside in St. Lucia come equipped, and their truck beds are piled high. For less than a dollar, you can drink and eat from the coconut right on the spot.

Where to find it: Castries Market or street-side vendors (5-to-10-minute walk from the cruise terminal).

Local Fruits and Juices

Credit Jamie Werner

Throughout Castries, vendors pedal many interesting fruits and juices, like green mango and tamarind. Passion-fruit juice, one of the most popular, is both sweet and tart, but light and refreshing at the same time. As for the fruits, some you may recognize, but the odd and prickly ones like sugar apples or soursops are a sight to behold and definitely worth trying. Both are very sweet and require you to spit out seeds. Most vendors are friendly and will happily tell you about the fruits in more detail, some may even give you a sample. You won’t be able to take the fruit onto the ship, so be sure to enjoy while you’re on the island. Consider grabbing some fruit before you head off on your excursion.

Where to find it: Castries Market or street-side vendors (five-to-10-minute walk from the cruise terminal).

Cassava Breads

These gluten-free, chewy unleavened flat breads are made from the cassava shrub root, sometimes known as manioc or yucca. Most often eaten as a snack throughout the day, some restaurants serve them as sandwich bread. They come plain or in sweet and savory flavors such as ginger, mango, coconut, salt fish and smoked herring.

Where to find it: Castries Market (5-to-10-minute walk from the cruise terminal); Plas Kassav, a cassava factory, which is the only place on the island to see how cassava cakes are made (45-minute cab ride).


Credit Jamie Werner

Breadfruit grows like a large, green-shelled melon from a tree, but it’s not actually a fruit. Its flesh is most similar to a potato in nature, and similarly, it’s typically boiled or roasted and served as a side to stewed meat or fish. It’s also delicious as a snack when sliced and fried like a chip.

Where to find it: Castries Market (5-to-10-minute walk from the cruise terminal).


Credit Jamie Werner

St. Lucia Distillers Group of Companies, St. Lucia’s only rum distillery, has produced award-winning rum since 1972. Guided tours and tastings are available on weekdays. Most popular is their premium brand, Chairman’s Reserve, available at bars across the island. For a Lucian twist on a cocktail classic, try a traditional rum punch … the secret is the nutmeg!

Where to find it: St. Lucia Distillers Group of Companies (25-minute cab ride); Rum Therapy Bar & Treatment Centre , Pointe Seraphine (10-minute cab ride).

Lucian Crab Back

Credit Jamie Werner

Basically a crab cake tucked neatly back into the crab shell, this delectable dish is most often served as an appetizer. It’s made with local herbs, garlic butter and the tender meat from local land crabs.

Where to find it: The Coal Pot Restaurant (10-minute cab ride).

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