Every country has its own traditional and very popular food & drink brands. Well, Colombia is no exception, because we do have tons that are indispensable for our daily life and have indeed become part of our identity. In this article, I will explain some famous Colombian food and drink brands that you definitely need to try (and where to get them) when coming to Bogotá.
One of the things you need to do when coming to Bogotá is try the food; it sounds obvious, but it’s something you shouldn’t miss, even by mistake. By trying our local delicacies you are not only experiencing new flavors but also understanding part of our culture. Here, I’ve decided to show you some of the most traditional; those that no Colombian can live without, because they are also part of who we are.
Imagine you are wandering around Bogotá and feeling hungry, but not hungry enough for a full meal, so you want something little, a snack, to satisfy the desire. You are debating if you want something sweet or salty, but finally decide to go for something sweet. You enter a supermarket, a local shop, or a “tienda”, and you don’t know what to choose out of all the possibilities. Well, if you let me guide you, this is what you should definitely try:
Widely recognized for its deliciousness, Nucita has captivated every Colombian’s heart during decades. It’s a chocolate cream with double the chocolate,hazelnut, and milk. And it comes as wafers, cookies, bread spread, or even ice cream.
Price: 1 for $500COP (0.16USD) /Box of 12 for $4500COP (1.48USD)
Bom Bom Bum
One of the most iconic candies in Colombia. Nothing beats the experience of eating the outer deliciously-flavoured caramel of the Bom Bom Bum just to get to the gum inside. It’s truly a part of every Colombian’s childhood. Nowadays it has many flavors: strawberry, grape, mango, passion fruit, tangerine, etc.
Price: 1 FOR $300COP (USD) /Pack of 24 for $7300COP (2.41USD)
Without a doubt, the favourite chocolate bar for Colombians. The best thing is not only its amazing flavor, but the collectible stickers it has inside, showing the diversity of our country. Whenever you eat one, you’ll have one more sticker to put in the album, and so, you can eat several. Apart from the iconic bar, it also comes as a spread, an ice cream or a wafer.
Price: 1 for $500COP (0.16USD) /Bag of 12 for $4200COP (1.38USD)
Coming straight out of heaven since 1972, Chocoramo never fails, and it’s a must for any Colombian. It’s basically a cake, with a filling of vanilla and a thin layer of chocolate on the outside. It even has a “mini” version in case you don’t want the standard, and it also has a spread (like a Nutella).
Price: 1 for $2000COP (0.66USD)
Feeling hungry now!? If you want to try more typical Colombian sweet food, beyond the snacks and delicacies, don’t hesitate to read our article Traditional Colombian Desserts You Need to Try to find out more.
This time, you prefer something salty. Out of all the possibilities, you should definitely try these:
The most famous and traditional Colombian brand of potato chips. It has been on the market since the 80s, and there are several flavors to try: lemon, salt, chicken, barbecue, and even tomato, or jalapeño & cheese. Papas Margarita is everywhere for everyone.
Price: 1 bag for $2200COP (0.66 USD) /12 bags for $7400COP (2.44 USD)
The best peanut snack you’ll try; with a delicious crunchy-hard shell made from flour that would make you eat them all in seconds, and with flavors such as lemon, spicy or just salty. Do not miss them if you are a peanut lover (plus, they are vegan)!
Price: 1 small bag for $800COP (0.27USD) /1 big bag for $3700COP (1.20USD)
Galletas Saltín Noel
With a delicious crispy flavor, Saltín Noel crackers are a must on the table of any Colombian home. Perfect to enjoy any time of the day by themselves, or with a touch of jam, cream cheese, or butter, the versatility of this product is its best feature. Also, coming in flavors such as cheese & butter, seeds & cereals, or traditional salty.
Price: 1 pack for $3800COP (1.20USD) /
If you are not the biggest fan of potato chips, Maizitos are a great option for a snack (and present without fail in almost any Colombian child’s lunch box!) Made of corn, and coming in flavours such as lemon, cheese, or tomato, it is truly one of the most traditional products on the market.
Price: 1 bag for $1500COP (0.49USD) /12 bags for $6200COP (2.00USD)
Several drink brands have also been part of Colombian homes for decades, satisfying thirsty hearts with amazing flavors and remarkable experiences. If you fancy something to drink, and you are not sure what to choose, these are the options I recommend you try:
A non-alcoholic soft drink based on malt and produced in Colombia since 1953; every Colombian has tried it at least a couple of times. It goes well with other traditional foods such as empanadas (read our article Colombia: the country of empanadas) or pandebono (gluten-free cheese bread). You can find it in different sized bottles or cans for a cheap price.
Price: 1 small bottle for $950COP (0.31USD) /1 big bottle for $3300COP (1.09USD)
The most famous national soda, not only because of its name, but it’s flavor (veeery sweet!) and its characteristic bright orange color. It represents the best of Colombia: its people, its culture, its regions, its music, etc. It’s commonly drank at parties, meetings, etc. You can also mix it with beer and you would have Refajo,which is another traditional (made-up by the people) drink.
Price: 1 small bottle for $1260COP (0.41USD) /1 big bottle for $4600COP (1.52USD)
The most famous alcoholic drink in Colombia because of its flavor (it doesn’t have sugar!) and its price (cheap!). Drank at parties, barbecues and meetings, this “burning water” has been delighting Colombian throats for eighty years. Although there are other brands, Néctar is probably one of the most recognized. It is recommended to try it cold.
Price: ½ litre for $17000COP (5.52USD) /1 litre for $36900COP (12.2USD)
The beer of the people, the one that is drunk in small towns and big cities. Classic, tasty and refreshing, this beer is made of two-row malt and corn syrup with an unmistakable golden color and has been enjoyed by Colombians for more than a century. And it has also been the official sponsor of some of the most important celebrations in our country, from carnivals to local games.
Price: 1 can for $2200COP (0.72USD) /Six-pack for $12900COP (4.26USD)
*All the prices are approximated as it depends on where you buy the product.
If you are coming to Bogotá all these products can be found in supermarkets, like Éxito or D1 (read our article Bogotá’s Five Most Popular Supermarkets & Grocery Stores) in case you want the boxes or packages (and so, it’s a little bit more expensive), or local shops and “tiendas”, where you’ll be able to find them individually and for a cheaper price.
As a personal recommendation, if you combine the snacks (whether they are salty or sweet) with the drinks I just mentioned, you’ll have an experience to remember. You’ll feel the flavors and the magic of these products, which are eaten and drunk all across the country, no matter where you come from. The fabulous thing about them is that they don’t age, meaning that they have managed to survive market changes for decades as a testimony of who we are, as part of our identity. Please, don’t forget to try them when coming to Bogotá. Also, read our articles Typical Colombian Alcoholic Drinks in Bogotá & their Recipes and Foods You Must Try in Bogotá to know more.
Was this article useful? Do you know more food & drink Colombian brands that should be on this list? Or maybe an experience you would like to share? Please visit our homepage Colture and take a look at my articles and many others to find more essential information about Bogotá before or during your trip.