How Much Is Food In Colombia?

credit: Peter Parker

Colombia has become a sought-after destination for travel. Its vibrant culture and diverse landscapes are part of the key aspects that draw visitors to this intriguing country. The country also offers a delightful culinary journey for food enthusiasts. In this article, we’ll expand on how much food is in Colombia and explore the cost of dining out, street food, and grocery shopping in this South American gem.

Food in Colombia can vary significantly depending on where you eat. On average, sit-down meals at mid-level restaurants can cost you 55,000 COP. But there is a way to get away cheaper by finding local eateries that charge 15,000 to 25,000 COP for a three-course authentic Colombian meal.

How Much Does Food Cost In Colombia

Whether dining out, savoring street food, or cooking at home, you’ll find the cost of food in Colombia caters to a wide range of budgets. Depending on where you eat, finding a good meal doesn’t mean blowing the vacation budget. With budget-friendly eateries, you can experience the taste of Colombian cuisine.

How Much Does Dining Out In Colombia Cost?

Colombia offers many dining options, from cozy local eateries to upscale restaurants. Lunch is your main meal in Colombia and often consists of a three-course meal that includes soup, a main dish, and dessert, finished with a small Tinto or coffee.

Here’s a brief breakdown of the average costs you can expect for a meal.

Local Eateries

For an authentic Colombian lunch experience, you can visit local restaurants offering affordable lunches. You can expect this to set you back anywhere from 15,000 to 25,000 Colombian Pesos (COP), roughly $3,5 to $6.

Mid-Range Restaurants

In cities like Bogotá, Medellín, and Cartagena, mid-range restaurants offer a variety of international and Colombian dishes. Expect to pay around 50,000 to 85,000 COP, around $13 to $21 per person.

Fine Dining

If you’re looking for a luxurious dining experience, high-end restaurants can cost between 100,000 to 200,000 COP, $25 to $50 or more per person.

How Much Does Grocery Shopping Cost In Colombia?

One way to keep your budget down is cooking your own meals; Colombia’s grocery stores have a wide selection of products. Here’s an estimate of grocery prices you can expect to pay when shopping in Colombia.

ItemsAverage Colombian peso (COP)Price in Dollars (At the time this article was written)
Milk 1l4,300 COP$1,06
Bread 500g4,600 COP$1,12
Dozen eggs7,300 COP$1.80
Cheese 1kg17,000 COP$4,20
Sugar 1kg5,200 COP$1,30
Chicken fillets 1kg18,000 COP$4,40
Beef 1kg27,000 COP$6,60
Sausages34,000 COP$8.31
Rice 1kg4,300 COP$1,05
Cooking oil14,000 COP$3,43
Potatoes 1kg3,800 COP$0.93
Onion 1kg3,800 COP$0.93
Tomatoes 1kg4,500 COP$1,10
Assorted fruits3,500 to 10,000 COP$0,85 to $2,45
Coca-Cola 2l6,150 COP$1,50
Bottled water 1.5l4,500 COP$1,10
Coffee 200g37,000 COP$9.05
Local Beer3,500 COP$0.85

How Much Does Street Food Cost In Colombia

Colombian street food is a culinary adventure on its own. The cost of street food items can vary from vendor to vendor, and prices also depend on region. Street stalls are the cheapest, but the same items can cost you a lot more if you order them at a restaurant or café.

Here are some popular street foods and their prices,

  • Arepa, a staple Colombian snack, is usually priced at 4,000 COP, about $1 each.
  • Empanadas, these savory pastries filled with meat or cheese, are a street food favorite, costing around 3,000 COP, less than $1 each.
  • Fruit Stalls, Colombia, is famous for its exotic fruits. A cup of fresh fruit from a street vendor will cost you about 3,500 to 5,000 COP, that’s around $1 to $1.50.

What Different Traditional Foods In Colombia Cost

Colombia’s cuisine is incredibly diverse and is renowned for its vibrant street food culture, offering a wide array of delicious and affordable options.

These street foods not only offer a taste of Colombia’s culinary traditions but are also easy on the wallet. Prices can vary slightly depending on the region and specific vendors. Still, street food is generally an affordable way to explore the country’s flavors while enjoying a budget-friendly dining experience.

Here are some popular street foods in Colombia and what you can typically expect to pay for them.


Arepas are round flatbreads made from maize or cornmeal, often served as a side dish or filled with various ingredients like cheese, meat, or eggs.

Basic arepas usually cost between 2,000 to 4,000 COP, less than $1, while filled arepas with toppings can range from 5,000 to 8,000 COP, $1.50 to $2.50 each.


Empanadas are savory pastries filled with ingredients like ground meat, cheese, chicken, or potatoes, deep-fried to crispy perfection.

Empanadas are budget-friendly options usually priced at 2,000 to 3,000 COP, less than $1 each when bought from street vendors.


Choripán is a popular Colombian street food made by placing a grilled chorizo sausage in a small baguette or roll, often topped with sauces and toppings.

You can expect to pay around 5,000 to 7,000 COP, $1.50 to $2.50 for a choripán from a street vendor.

Bandeja Paisa

This hearty, traditional Colombian dish includes rice, red beans, ground beef, fried egg, chorizo sausage, pork rind (chicharrón), avocado, and arepa. It’s so good that it is Colombia’s national dish.

In restaurants, a bandeja paisa typically costs around 20,000 to 35,000 COP, which sets you back about $6 to $9.


Ajiaco is a flavorful chicken and potato soup, often served with corn on the cob, capers, cream, and avocado.

A bowl of ajiaco can range from 10,000 to 30,000 COP, $3 to $8, depending on where you decide to eat.


Sancocho is a hearty soup made with a variety of meats, root vegetables, and corn, creating a rich and flavorful dish.

You can expect to pay around 33,000 COP, $8 for a bowl of sancocho in a restaurant.


Colombian ceviche is made with fresh fish or seafood marinated in a blend of lime juice, onions, tomatoes, cilantro, and spices.

A serving of ceviche in a coastal town might cost between 15,000 to 30,000 COP, $3.50 to $7.50.


Tamales are a popular Colombian dish made from corn masa filled with meat, vegetables, and spices, wrapped in banana leaves, and steamed.

A single tamale can range from 8,000 to 20,000 COP, $2 to $5, depending on the filling and location.


Obleas are thin wafers often filled with a caramel-like spread, cheese, or jam, creating a sweet treat.

Obleas are budget-friendly and affordable, typically costing around 2,000 to 4,000 COP, less than $1.

Perros Calientes

Colombian-style hot dogs, known as perros calientes, are loaded with different toppings such as cheese, sauces, vegetables, and more.

A perro caliente typically costs between 8,000 to 12,000 COP, about $2 to $3 depending on the toppings.


Salchipapa is a popular street dish consisting of sliced sausages and french fries, often served with various sauces and toppings.

A serving of salchipapa can range from 12,000 to 20,000 COP, $ 3 to $5, depending on whether you get it from a street food stall or order it in a restaurant.

Cazuelas de Mariscos

Cazuelas de mariscos is a seafood-type stew popular in Colombia’s coastal regions. Made up of different shellfish like lobster, shrimp, and clams, it also has octopus as an ingredient and is cooked in creamy coconut milk.

Depending on the toppings, a cazuela de mariscos can cost around 6,000 to 10,000 COP, $1.80 to $3.

Papas Rellenas

Papas rellenas are mashed potato balls filled with seasoned meat, deep-fried until brown and crispy.

You can find papas rellenas for approximately 20,000 COP, about $5 each.