Brazilian Food—Authentic Recipes

October 12, 2019  - by 

Ah, Brazil—a truly special country! Many Brazilians have left Brazil, but Brazil has never left them. Our culture, our music, our language are well-liked all over the world. Our food is also very well-known and enjoyed across the globe.

In this article, we would like to introduce you to traditional Brazilian foods that are unique and delicious.

To Brazilians everywhere—If your family is from Brazil and your favorite family recipes are not listed here, please share them with us in the comments section. You can also add your family’s traditional recipes to FamilySearch.org and pass them on to generations to come!

If you are not from Brazil but have eaten Brazilian food that you would like to try again, make a comment below, and we will try to help you find the dish that you liked.


Feijoada 

Traditional Brazilian feijoada, pork and black bean stew.

Who can resist a good feijoada? Feijoada is a stew of black beans with various types of pork and beef. It is served with farofa, rice, braised collard greens, and sliced ​​orange, among other sides.


Churrasco

Brazilian churrasco, barbecue meat on skewers.

Brazilian churrasco originated in the south, around Rio Grande do Sul, where you can find the best barbecue in the country.

“Churrasco is much more than a way of cooking in the Rio Grande do Sul—it’s a way of life.”
Derrick Riches (“Guide to Brazilian Barbecue”)

Churrasco is a dish made with meat “in natura,” or roasted on a fire or embers using skewers or grills. The standard formula for Brazilian-style churrasco is to coat meats in coarse salt, but the seasoning varies and becomes more elaborate according to taste and local custom. By far, beef is the preferred meat, but pork, sheep, poultry, and sausage, such as linguiça, are also very popular.


Tropeiro Beans

Brazilian recipe made with tropeiro beans or feijão tropeiro.

Just thinking about tropeiro beans makes my mouth water. Yum! This is one of the most typical dishes of the state of Minas Gerais. Its name comes from it being prepared by the cooks of the troops (“tropas”) who led the cattle, so it was referred to as tropeiro. This dish is made with beans, manioc flour, sausage, crackling, collard greens, eggs, garlic, onion, and other seasonings.


Tacacá

Tacacá dish from Brazil.

Tacacá is a delicacy typical of the Amazon region in Brazil. The name tacacá may sound funny to the foreign ear but is very well-known on the north of Brazil and is widely consumed in the states of Pará, Acre, Roraima, Amapá, Amazonas, and Rondônia.

Tacacá is a soup made with jambú (a native variety of paracress, a flowering herb with slight anesthetic properties), and tucupi (a yellow sauce made from manioc root), as well as dry shrimp. It is served very hot, seasoned with pepper, typically in gourds.


Tapioca

Example of tapioca made in Brazil.

Tapioca is the starch extracted from the root of the cassava plant. It is the main ingredient of some typical Brazilian dishes, such as beiju, an indigenous delicacy. There are tapiocas with salty fillings, used in recipes with ham and meat, and tapiocas with sweet fillings, often used in recipes with condensed milk.


Chicken with Pequi

Authentic chicken with pequi dish from Brazil, or frango com pequi.

Rice with chicken and pequi goiano is a delicious recipe that is perfect to serve for lunch. The pequi is a tree of the cariocaráceas family, native to the Brazilian cerrado, a large tropical savanna region. Its fruit is widely used in cooking.

Pequi fruits are often eaten cooked, pure or in a recipe with rice and chicken. The taste and aroma of the fruits are very striking and peculiar. Although found in many places, pequi is very common in the state of Goiás.


Cheese Bread

Traditional cheese bread from Brazil, or pão de queijo.

In an article about traditional Brazil recipes, we could not fail to mention our famous cheese bread. Cheese bread can be found all over Brazil, but nothing compares to what we find in the state of Minas Gerais.

The origin of Brazilian cheese bread is uncertain, but it is speculated that the recipe has existed since the 18th century, though it has become effectively popular in Brazil since the 1950s. Brazilian cheese bread is made with sour cassava flour or tapioca flour, milk, eggs, olive oil, and cheese.


Brigadeiro

Brigadeiro dessert from Brazil.

Brigadeiro is the most popular and favorite of Brazil’s sweets. The ingredients of brigadeiro are sweetened condensed milk, unsweetened cocoa powder, unsalted butter, and chocolate sprinkles. It is very tasty and will win your heart in one bite!

The many traditional foods of Brazil are delicious, and we could make a giant list. We have incredible dishes such as barreado, carne de sol, acarajé, moqueca capixaba, caldinhos de sururu, and maçunim that were not mentioned. However, in a quick search on the internet, you can find many amazing recipes and dishes to connect with your origins!

What about you? What is your favorite dish of Brazilian cuisine?


Discover Your Brazilian Heritage on FamilySearch.org!

Family from Brazil walking along the street.

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