Meals on the Inca Trail
When thinking of meals on a trekking trip, many may have images of beans and rice, compo rations or bland, unappealing fare.
Fond Inca Trail meal memories - Andean Trails staff
Kathy has fond memories of an outdoor breakfast at Phuyupatamarca, sitting round the table in the sun sharing piles of freshly made pancakes with some sliced Peruvian banana and a steaming mug of “proper” Peruvian coffee. Invigorated and ready for the day ahead.
Kat on the other hand harks back to arriving at Pacamayo campsite, having popcorn, biscuits and tea whilst waiting for dinner and taking in the view. A moment in time never to be forgotten.
Tom still can't get over arriving to Machu Picchu on his birthday morning to find the cooks had baked a cake the night before. As he says, " pretty incredible being able to make a sponge while camping – very tasty and then to eat it at Machu Picchu. Wonderful. " What a birthday!
On an Andean Trails Trekking holiday much thought has gone into meal planning taking into consideration nutrition, energy, taste and local ingredients as well as options for special dietary requirements.
On the standard Inca Trail, a typical day's menu would be something along the following lines:
- Snack: mandarins and granola bar
- Breakfast: porridge , bread, butter, jam, milk, coffee, tea, fruit juice and fruit salad.
- Lunch : Wantan (deep fried pastry filled with cheese and ham ), quinoa soup, chicken with stir fried rice, corn salad
- Afternoon tea : biscuits, pop corn, coffee, tea, infusions.
- Dinner : vegetable soup, meatballs with gratin potatoes and rice, salad selection and swiss chard pie, fried bananas.
Special dietary requirements.
People with special dietary requirements are well catered for. A typical day of vegan fare on the standard Inca Trail could be:
- Breakfast: Corn bread, fruit salad, soya yoghurt, quinoa flakes, hot drinks.
- Lunch: Vegetable soup; broad bean, carrot, mushroom and seaweed salad with "sancochadas" potatoes. Hot drinks.
- Dinner: Vegetarian minestrone soup, sautéed green beans with soya meat, vegetables and rice, poached apples. Hot drinks.
Celiacs/gluten free diets are catered for by replacing rice and pasta with quinoa, canihua and quiwicha as well as special produce such as camote (sweet potato) bread.
Fond Inca Trail meal memories - Andean Trails Clients
Andean Trails' Clients who have also sampled the culinary delights on the Inca Trail share some of their comments:
" It was a real revelation what was wheeled out on the Inca Trail for mealtimes. Oatmeal and pancakes and fruit for breakfast, omelette one morning also. Two course cooked lunch and three course evening meal all set up in a civilised dining tent with seating, proper cutlery, table cloths and even a sugar bowl! There were two vegans within our group and they also felt very happy with the dishes cooked specially for them." Lis Power
"food - excellent and attentive chefs. What they achieved of the move was amazing, delicious and diverse. Also catered well for vegetarians." Susheel Chumber,
"Incredible! We had an amazing time on the trail! The food surpassed all our expectations." Elfie Burgess
"The cook was incredible, the food he produced from the back to the tent was outstanding and probably some of the best meals on the whole trip. He made us, well mainly Mum, a cake on the last night as a congratulations for completing the trail - very cool." Jennifer Gibbons
"Just to let you know the Inca trail was fantastic, the Guide was excellent, and the food was really good, the whole experience was amazing. " Sue Bowling
For photos of the food check out our facebook page.
Not just the Inca Trail
There are many trekking options in Peru to sample modern day trekking fare in the stunning setting of the Peruvian Andes. The main trekking season for Peru is from April through to October. Alternatively from October through to April why not head and trek in Patagonia.