16 Best Latin American Chicken Recipes

Grilled Chicken Legs With Vegetable Skewers

LauriPatterson/Getty Images

Chickens are not native to Latin America. They're an import from Europe though there is a debate about the possibility of chickens coming to South American from Polynesia. 

Nowadays, Latin America is quite well known for certain popular chicken dishes, such as arroz con pollo and Peruvian-style Pollo a la Brasa. Peruvian roasted chicken is popular for a reason. It's popular due to the unique combination of spices used that gives the meat an extra bit of flavor. The dish has an interesting background. It was made famous by a couple of Swiss expats in the 1950s at their restaurant La Granja Azul. They designed and patented the mechanical spit that roasts multiple chickens simultaneously (el rotombo). The restaurant is still popular after decades. That's how you know they've done it right.

The word in Spanish for the hen is gallina, and gallo is the word for a rooster. 

However, when you are speaking of chicken meat (as in to eat), you typically use the word pollo. But a few recipes still use the words gallina or gallo such as the dish, sancocho de gallina, which is a hen soup. It used to be that people distinguished between the flavors and cooking uses of hens versus roosters. 

That's just the tip of the iceberg, however. Continue to discover a list of recipes for more interesting South American ways to prepare and enjoy chicken.