Cusco Culinary Experience
On the Cusco Culinary Experience tour, a Peruvian chef will show you how to make some of Peru’s best-known dishes. Choose between a 9 a.m. lunch class and a 3 p.m. dinner class. Both classes include an appetizer, a main course, and a dessert. You’ll also get two traditional drinks (one non-alcoholic and one cocktail). All of the instructions are easy enough for beginner chefs.
up to 20 days in advance
- Duration: 4 hrs
- Available Days: Every day
- Schedule: 9:00 AM, 3:00 PM
- Inquire for Transportation
- Free cancellation up to 20 days prior
- Mobile Ticket Included
- Offered in English, Spanish
Before the cooking begins, your tour will start with a visit to the San Pedro market, one of the largest and most popular markets in Cusco. This market is a colorful place, with rows of stalls piled high with local fruits. Back at the kitchen, your cooking class will include a fruit tasting. And as part of your cooking instruction, your guide will show you the ins and outs of a traditional Andean kitchen.
In the same building, you’ll get to tour a chichería. This is where local brewers produce chicha, an old recipe for beer made from corn. The Inca considered this drink sacred, and to this day many consider the flavor to be a religious experience (although it may take some getting used to).
For lunch class, the chef will show you how to prepare ají de gallina. Ají de gallina consists of stewed chicken with a rich, peppery sauce. Ají peppers, which are very popular in Peruvian cooking, give the chicken quite a kick. In the lunch class you’ll also get to make ceviche, which consists of fresh, raw seafood marinated in citrus juice.
If you opt for the dinner class, you’ll learn how to make lomo saltado. This dish showcases the culinary influence of Chinese immigrants on Peruvian cooking. The Chinese brought soy sauce with them, which is one of the main flavors in this dish. Meat marinated with soy sauce and vinegar gets stir-fried with tomatoes, onions, and a splash of vinegar, for a savory meal that packs an umami punch. Lomo saltado is served on top of rice, another import from China.
Each class will include two drinks: a cool glass of non-alcoholic chicha morada, and a pisco sour cocktail. Chicha morada, just like the fermented chicha beer, is made from cooked corn. “Morada” means purple, which references the purple color of this native corn. You can prepare this drink much like a tea, stewing the corn kernels in hot water with cinnamon, clove, and sugar. Once the mixture cools, it’s ready to drink. Pisco sour is the official cocktail of Peru. It combines pisco, a brandy made from grapes, with fresh lime and a foamy egg white topping.
This cooking class introduces you to some of the most popular dishes in Peru, and gives you the information you need to recreate the dishes once you return home. Even if you're not an aspiring chef, this tour will provide an entertaining meal, paired with refreshing drinks and good company.
What to Bring
Camera and money for personal expenses.
English-speaking tour guide, cooking class led by a Peruvian chef, apertif, a glass of wine, water, appetizer, main course, dessert, and all the necessary ingredients.
Many of our tours and activities offer transportation pick up & drop off options from several locations and destinations. Options vary by tour, see “More Time and Rates” for full details.
I enjoyed this experience more than I initially thought that I would enjoy it. The small group of us met the chef at the market in Cusco and he lead us into the market to buy the necessary ingredients for our culinary experience. He also provided a lot of the history of Cusco and the importance of many of the Peruvian foods. The ceviche, Pisco Sour, and the dessert that the group made with the direction of the chef were OUTSTANDING.
Loved this experience! It was very enjoyable and educational at the same time!
The cooking class was a highlight of the trip! Loved getting to go to the market and buy some of the food we’d prepare. Our instructor was very friendly and informative and the food we prepared was excellent!