It is very hard to stay healthy with the food options in Argentina.
It seems as if everything is sugar coated or drowning in cheese. Of course you can find healthy food to prepare for yourself, but sometimes you just don’t have that luxury.
And I’m not saying these substitutions are the healthiest options, but here’s my list of food that will hurt your waistline less!
Medialunas are a sticky-sweet croissant that is full of sugar and empty carbs. They are so delicious and seem so light you can easily scarf down half a dozen without even noticing.
They often accompany your coffee and are more likely to put you in a sugar coma than fill you up. For this reason, I suggest Tostadas.
Tostadas are sometimes just tiny toasted breads that come with jam (skip the dulce de leche!), and other times they are more substantial ham and cheese (tomato and cheese for vegetarians) sandwiches.
Either way, you’re getting a lot less sugar and have a better chance of actually tiding yourself over.
Eat: Helado de agua
Not: Helado de crema
Heladerías (ice cream shops) are everywhere in Argentina.
I, myself, am an ice cream fanatic and have a hard time walking past them several times a day without drooling. The ice cream in Argentina is divine so you really should treat yourself on occasion.
But if you want to make it a little lighter, look for a section on the menu that has ice cream made with water.
I know, I know, it’s not really ice cream if the cream is missing, but it’s still a refreshing treat and a lot healthier than a heaping scoop of dulce de leche con brownie!
Eat: Milanesa con pure de calabaza (Milanesa with pumpkin puree)
Not: Milanesa Napolitana con papas fritas (Milanesa Napolitana with french fries)
Milanesas are another staple in Argentine cuisine.
This thin, breaded meat is certainly not healthy but it would be hard to avoid it completely.
The trick is to skip the “napolitana” which adds loads of cheese, tomato and sometimes a slice of ham. Also, you can almost always get pumpkin pure as a side which saves you the grease from the french fries.
Of course there are health food restaurants in Argentina, but you’re not always going to be near them or be able to afford them, so keep these tips in mind when you are placing your order!
What are some foreign treats you’ve over-indulged in abroad? Any healthy alternatives you’ve turned to? Share your list of what to eat and not eat!
please, who thinks on diets, healthy foods on vacation??? unless the person have a medical condition, of course. Vacation is the time to relax, to unwind, and in some point to reward all our hard work, our unstoppable search your healthy food and fitness. It’s okay a very few days in A YEAR to let aside the worries and just enjoy ourselves, our surroundings, the true tastes, the aromas, the sight, the EVERYTHING!
Love your blog!
I’m was thinking more for long term travelers. I totally agree that when you are on a short vacation you should allow yourself a lot more freedom with what you eat. I think you should always allow yourself occasional treats in every day life as well. However, when you spend a a couple months or more in Argentina, you have to watch what you eat a bit!
I got so fat in Argentina! Seriously, I’m talking like 15 pounds in straight ice cream weight. Actually, I would’ve loved reading this before I went! I had no idea about the ice cream water or milanesa with pumpkin! You are a healthy little genius, you.
Fugazzetta from Kentucky Pizza didn’t make the list?!
Haha, it should have been on a “Not” list for sure.
Great post on the food of Argentina! Usually people only write about the beef, but you’ve done a good job going much deeper.
Thank you! I don’t eat mammals so the steak and ham craze is lost on me.
If only you’d written this in 2011 before I gained 15 pounds in 5 months… and the cleaning lady kept telling me I looked “skinny”. Lies!
Haha but nice post.
Medialunas are amazing! Definitely local beef…and empanadas!