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World Travel Guide > Guides > Africa > Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso Food and Drink

Burkinabé cuisine is typical for West Africa, with staple foods including sorghum, millet, rice, maize, nuts, potatoes and yams. Mutton, beef and fish are common ingredients, while vegetables are recognisably European, with tomatoes, carrots, onions and spinach being fundamental to the country’s cuisine. In rural areas, meat is often replaced with fish or boiled eggs.

Unexpectedly, Burkina Faso is known for its tasty local strawberries. A range of banana varieties play an important part in both savoury and sweet dishes. Mangoes, papayas and coconuts (normally sold for their water rather than their flesh) are all readily available on the streets of even the smallest towns.

Specialities

Babenda: Stew of fish, fermented beans and cabbage or spinach.
: Mashed sorghum or millet that is the traditional carbohydrate of all meals.
Rizgras: Rice cooked with meat, tomatoes and onions.
Brochettes: Meat cooked on a skewer.
Sauce gombo: A sauce made from okra.
Pouletbicyclette: A grilled chicken dish popular across West Africa, served with carrots and potatoes.
Ragout d’Igname: Stew of vegetables and meat, frequently beef.
Dôlo: Local beer made from pearl millet or sorghum wheat.
Gapalo: Drink of soured milk and millet grains.
Bissap: Drink made from bissap flowers.

Tipping

Service is generally included in the bill (about 10 to 15%) although it is customary to tip taxi drivers, porters and hotel staff. Tipping is more expected in the better-class restaurants.

Drinking age

18.