When American’s think fast food they think greasy burgers, crunchy french fries, value meals, and heartburn. However, there is a new trend in fast food that people are gravitating towards, and it doesn’t include you sitting in a car waiting to hand your credit card out the window.
Latin fast food takes the restaurant out of the picture, and relies simply on your ability to throw a few common ingredients together for a quick meal you cook yourself. It is a movement that has been sweeping the nation for years, and relied on by college students, large families, and people on the go.
These 7 Latin fast food ideas will have you full and firmly packed with enough time run a brush through your hair on your way out the door.
1 | Puerto Rican Pinchos
Pinchos are a fast food favorite in Puerto Rico. They are typically made with marinated chicken or pork topped with butter and served with or on toast. They are simple, fast, and completely different depending on what you decide to put in the marinade. They are enjoyed for both lunch and dinner.
2 | Chipotle Grilled Peppers and Onions
While this quick dish doesn’t have a central protein to hold it down, it is fast and easy enough to make up for that shortcoming. Simply marinate some sliced onions and peppers in a chipotle pepper sauce, throw them on the grill, and have an instant meal in less than 10 minutes. They can be used as a garnish for a larger dish, or on their own as a filling for vegan tacos.
3 | Beef, chicken or spinach empanadas
Empanadas are a popular snack throughout Latin America, but especially in Argentina and Peru. They are tiny fried pastries, triangular in shape, and filled with any number of delicious concoctions. Most popularly, they are filled with beef, chicken, or spinach and topped with chimichurri or another spicy pepper sauce. Empanadas are traditionally served as an appetizer before a main course.
4 | Grilled Chicken or Beef Burrito
There’s no denying the staying power of this Latin fast food staple. There are few things better than a tortilla wrapped around your favorite grilled meat, and can be paired with just about any ingredient under the sun to suit your fast food needs. Chicken (pollo asada) or beef (carne asada) are among the most popular burrito fillings, typically coupled with beans, rice, and guacamole.
5 | Refried Beans
There’s nothing complicated about refried beans. They are a simple combination of pinto beans, garlic, lime juice, and your favorite Latin blend of herbs and spices, cooked down in less than 20 minutes. They are like the mashed potatoes of Mexican cuisine, and can be enjoyed on their own, in a burrito, or next to a plate of street tacos.
6 | Chimichangas
As if the burrito needed anything to make it any better, the chimichanga comes around and says ‘hold my beer.’ Chimichangas are fried burritos that are typically filled with meat, rice, beans and cheese. Many people cover over the top with enchilada sauce, sour cream, and even more cheese. Get the Tums ready.
7 | Choripán
Choripán is a pre-soccer match tailgate staple in Argentina, and it’s easy to see why. This chorizo sausage sandwich is smothered in chimichurri sauce, which is made with cilantro, parsley, garlic, red pepper, oil and vinegar. It’s easy to prepare and can be enjoyed just about anywhere you can cook up some sausage.