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A long pork chop, topped with lime wedges, surrounding a mound of mofongo, with a side salad.
Chuleta kan kan with mofongo at El Platanal.
Zuania Muñiz Meléndez/Eater

The 15 Best Spots for Mofongo in San Juan

From mofongo de yuca stuffed with seafood at a family-run institution, to fast-casual mofongo bowls topped with carne frita and ropa vieja, here’s where to eat mofongo in San Juan

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Chuleta kan kan with mofongo at El Platanal.
| Zuania Muñiz Meléndez/Eater

You can find mofongo all over San Juan. It’s served in high-end restaurants and dive bars, at pop-up kiosks and roadside chinchorros (stalls), each with their own style and flavor. But it isn’t just ubiquitous; it also tells the story of Puerto Rico. According to historian Cruz Miguel Ortíz Cuadra, who has written about Puerto Rican culinary history, mofongo descends from West African fufu, a dish of boiled, mashed yams. Enslaved Africans brought the dish to PR, traded the yams for green plantains, and adapted the technique for the pilón, a wooden mortar and pestle.

To make the dish today, cooks still use a pilón to crush fried plantains along with garlic, oil, and chicharrones; this can vary based on who’s making it, and vegetarian versions are often available. From there, they get creative, stuffing the mashed mixture with pork, chicken, or seafood, or serving any sort of entree alongside. Along with green plantain-based mofongo, you’ll see bifongo, which adds yucca, pana (breadfruit), or sweet plantains, as well as trifongo, which combines three of the above. Don’t forget to ask for mayo-ketchup, the umami-packed portmanteau condiment that perfectly complements the starchy dish.

Gabriela Torres is on a journey to find new flavors, combining her work in food journalism and food and beverage administration. She believes the best part about eating, whether on her own island of Puerto Rico or elsewhere, is getting to know about a culture through its cuisine.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. El Campeón

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201 C. de San Justo, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico
(787) 399-0444

At El Campeón in Old San Juan, Patrick and Cecilia Champion bring in the crowds with live music and happy hour offerings. Their casual yet fine menu focuses on seafood dishes like lobster risotto and whole fried snapper. Try the trifongo, stuffed into rounds of filete de cerdo (pork tenderloin); the meat encases sweet ripe plantains and starchy mashed yuca along with the salty green plantains, and a risotto of pork sausage and sauteed vegetables on the side further enhances the porky, salty flavors. If you prefer surf to turf, order from their variety of seafood-stuffed mofongos, like the shrimp in criolla or garlic sauce.

A tall mofongo, topped with thick slices of steak, sprouts, and other garnishes, in a pool of green sauce.
Mofongo relleno de churrasco.
El Campeón/Facebook

2. Café Manolín

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251 C. de San Justo, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico
(787) 723-9743
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For more than 70 years, Café Manolín has been making exquisite, affordable, well-loved food on Old San Juan’s Calle Justo. Don Ernesto Ruíz opened the restaurant in 1942, before selling it to his brother Manolín Ruíz, who in turn passed it to current owners Annie Rivera and Tomás J. Molina. Loyal customers come for the traditional mofongo de camarones — with pieces of chicharron dotting the surface and bursting with shrimp in garlic sauce — often paired with other house specialties like medium-rare steak with chimichurri, or fried chicken straight out of the fryer. Get your order with a beer, and finish off your meal with a cafe con leche, or cortadito, made just the way Grandma likes it.

3. Ajo Del País

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253 C. de San Francisco, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico
(787) 724-2025
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You’ll find garlic in almost every dish at Ajo Del País, which honors the flavor that perhaps best represents Puerto Rican cuisine, but that’s just the starting point for the restaurant to demonstrate the roots of local foods. Along with red snapper, salmon, and fried chicken, the restaurant serves traditional mofongos, many served right in pilones. Go for the version with a topping of octopus salad; the seafood covers the whole dish, but the flavors perfectly balance garlic, oils, and salt, and you can add a twist by swapping the mofongo for the bifongo or trifongo, which include yuca, sweet plantain, or pana (breadfruit). Don’t miss the watermelon or mango mojitos, which cut the rich flavors.

A dish covered in a saucy mix of seafood and cooked chopped vegetables, with a lopsided pile of mofongo in the back.
Seafood mofongo.
Sushella Monclova Chinea

4. Palmas El Rincón De Paco

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281 C. de San Sebastián, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico
(787) 479-7676
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Next to La Verguenza, Palma el Rincón de Paco is a little restaurant that focuses on fresh, local products from Puerto Rico. Try the rich mofongo with lobster tail in salsa criolla, a perky sauce of garlic, peppers, and cilantro designed for fresh seafood, which adds zip to the mashed plantains. Order their abnormally large passionfruit margarita to kick off the night — strongly.

5. La Vergüenza

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280 C. Norzagaray, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico
(939) 415-4367
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It’s hard to find a better combination than mofongo with homemade rum punch, but La Verguenza, set off Calle San Sebastián, improves on the combo with one of the city’s best views of the sea and a lively music scene. Though the place is really more of a bar, the mofongo hits the right notes, with touches of butter, garlic, and salt dancing together nicely — but pour on some mayo-ketchup to make the beat drop on the flavor. La Verguenza offers an affordable night of dinner and dancing — and people do come to dance, so dress appropriately.

Mofongo with large chunks of meat and sliced onions in a shallow ceramic bowl.
Meat filled mofongo.
La Vergüenza

6. Puerto Criollo

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360 C. de Tetuán, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico
(787) 303-0016
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Many visitors believe this bar in Old San Juan serves the best mofongo in the city. The version stuffed with shrimp is particularly popular, especially since diners can choose to amp it up with salsa criolla or creamy garlic sauce. Find a shaded spot beneath a patio umbrella and watch the crowds in the plaza.

7. Casa Patria

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Carr. 19 km. 6, San Juan
00926, Puerto Rico
(939) 416-9264
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This local restaurant was built for family and friends, a community that has only grown stronger together as they’ve endured hurricanes, earthquakes, and the COVID-19 pandemic. The rustic mofongo is buttery and flavorful, best paired with bacalao guisado, a Puerto Rican dish that combines salty cod with tomato sauce, potato, onion, herbs, pepper, and garlic. Enjoy it with their house drink, the refreshing mojito el caminante, which adds a touch of carambola (starfruit) to the usual mint leaves.

8. Casita Miramar

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00907, 605 Av. Miramar, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico
(787) 200-8227
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This chic house on Avenida Miramar was designed for Doña Aurora, the mastermind behind all the recipes and flavors that are now on the menus at Casita Miramar and Casita Blanca. Aurora’s grandchildren, Jesuito and Leonardo Pérez, now run the emblematic restaurant, where their goal is to maintain their grandma’s traditions. Start your meal with the first-rate bacalaitos (cod fritters) served with a green banana broth, or the buñuelos de malanga (taro cakes). Then dig into their popular mofongo de yuca stuffed with seafood. The cassava brings a rich base to a soft inside, perfectly fried to a crispy shell, with flavors more subtle than sharp. The chicken fricassee is also great with a side order of mofongo and slices of avocado for brightness.

Mofongo topped with shrimp and mussels in a creamy sauce.
Mofongo de yuca stuffed with seafood.
Casita Miramar

9. Guararé Cocina Puertorriqueña

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1004 Cll Elisa Cerra, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico
(787) 722-4013
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At gastronomy bar Guararé, owners Joseph Boucher Martínez and Annette Giuliani proudly showcase the riches of Puerto Rican agriculture in their comida criolla alongside local music talent. Take a tour through their craft cocktails, made with fresh ingredients like smoked lavender, blueberry syrup, and elderflower. Then explore their mofongo and trifongo, best paired with the churrasco encebollado, skirt steak, and glassy caramelized onion that infuse the mofongo with their juices.

A sauce covered mofongo with shrimp, tomatoes, and cilantro in a deep dish.
Mofongo de camarones.
Guararé Cocina Puertorriqueña

10. La Alcapurria Quemá

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251 C. Duffaut, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico
(787) 535-0000
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Don’t let the name fool you; this place makes good alcapurrias (fritters), but plenty of customers come for the mofongo, which is big and flavorful like everything else they serve. The corner spot is hip and lively, but the homestyle cooking is just like at a chinchorro in the countryside. There are multiple varieties of mofongo on offer made from plantain or fried yuca, and they might come filled with hefty entrees or with dishes paired alongside. The carne frita encebollada (fried pork chops with caramelized onion) and serenata de bacalao (cold, salty cod salad) are particularly great, especially paired with your beer of choice.

A mound of bright mofongo beside pork buried beneath pickled onions, a salad, and side of green sauce.
Mofongo with carne frita encebollada.
La Alcapurria Quemá

11. Santaella

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219 C. Canals, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico
(787) 725-1611
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After working with renowned chefs like Ferran Adrià and Éric Ripert, chef José Santaella has made his own name in Puerto Rico by highlighting traditional cocina criolla in the context of modern gastronomy. His namesake restaurant serves a luxury take on a trifongo of yuca, green plantain, and sweet plantain, finished with bits of salty bacon to hammer home the flavor. It’s served alongside the chef’s own magnificent spin on jumbo shrimp in a pool of creamy garlic sauce. 

12. El Platanal

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1596 Cll Bori, San Juan
00927, Puerto Rico
(787) 250-8199
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El Platanal is a family restaurant that has been going strong for 10 years. Founded by Rafael Hidalgo in the Carolina neighborhood, it’s grown to include locations across the area, including central San Juan and Loiza. The restaurant offers mofongo as an accompaniment to dishes like chillo frito (fried red snapper) and chuleta kan kan (fried pork chop), but even as a side dish it’s an excellent example — simple, stuffed with chicharron, and dotted with caramelized onions that keep the mofongo buttery. With a soft, heavenly texture inside, the mofongo avoids getting dense or dry as you work your way through it, leaving plenty of time to enjoy the flavor. There’s a decent drinks menu too, so pair your meal with a Cuba libre, mojito, beer, or wine.

A mound of mofongo beside a whole fried fish topped with lime wedges beside a salad.
Mofongo with chillo frito.
Zuania Muñiz Meléndez/Eater

13. El Cuchifrito

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1552 PR-25 Lote 23, San Juan
00923, Puerto Rico
(787) 590-8269
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Among the kiosks at Lote 23, an outdoor “gastronomic park” of food stalls, you’ll find chef Pablo Rosas serving traditional Puerto Rican dishes at El Cuchifrito. Specially for the #mofongolover, Rosas scratch-cooks mofongo from plantain, sweet potato, yuca, or a trifongo of all three, which diners can then customize with their choice of steak in demi-glace, carne frita with pickled onions, fish in criolla sauce, or surf and turf with carne frita plus shrimp or fish. Dishes are served in compostable bowls, so you can enjoy your meal at the picnic tables at the center of the park, or take it to go.

A sauce-covered mofongo with pickled onion, chicharrones, and lime wedge on top.
Mofongo with fish in criolla sauce.
Pablo Rosas

14. Trópiko

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157 C. O'Neill, San Juan
00918, Puerto Rico
(787) 985-9737
Visit Website

At Trópiko, mofongo translates perfectly into the fast-casual bowl format, with mashed plantains serving as the base for toppings like arroz mamposteao (tomato-spiked rice and beans), fresh vegetables, and your choice of proteins. You can build your own mofongo plate, or go with one of the house specialties. The Boricua comes with rice and beans, carne frita (fried pork), caramelized onion, sweet plantain, bacon, and mayo-ketchup, while the El Tropical consists of bifongo with mamposteao, steak, caramelized onion, arañitas (nests of fried plantains that resemble a spider’s web), shredded cheese, avocado, and the house sauce, Trópiko aioli. The most popular, though, might be La Vaya, which consists of arroz mamposteao, avocado, ropa vieja, and a drizzle of Trópiko aioli. Pair your meal with a flavored mojito served in a cute pouch.

15. La Casita Blanca

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351 C. Tapia, San Juan
00912, Puerto Rico
(787) 726-5501
Visit Website

For more than 30 years, La Casita Blanca has been representing Puerto Rican flavors in magazines and attracting luminaries from the culinary world. The whitewashed wood walls and interior overflow with foliage, making it a magnet for visitors posting food pics to Instagram. Despite the hype, the restaurant still delivers on flavor. The shrimp mofongo is pierced with red peppers and shredded carrots, garnished with parsley, and presented on a plantain leaf with a side of mayo-ketchup and a special shot of rum with a coffee bean, symbolizing money, health, and love.

1. El Campeón

201 C. de San Justo, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
A tall mofongo, topped with thick slices of steak, sprouts, and other garnishes, in a pool of green sauce.
Mofongo relleno de churrasco.
El Campeón/Facebook

At El Campeón in Old San Juan, Patrick and Cecilia Champion bring in the crowds with live music and happy hour offerings. Their casual yet fine menu focuses on seafood dishes like lobster risotto and whole fried snapper. Try the trifongo, stuffed into rounds of filete de cerdo (pork tenderloin); the meat encases sweet ripe plantains and starchy mashed yuca along with the salty green plantains, and a risotto of pork sausage and sauteed vegetables on the side further enhances the porky, salty flavors. If you prefer surf to turf, order from their variety of seafood-stuffed mofongos, like the shrimp in criolla or garlic sauce.

201 C. de San Justo, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico

2. Café Manolín

251 C. de San Justo, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico

For more than 70 years, Café Manolín has been making exquisite, affordable, well-loved food on Old San Juan’s Calle Justo. Don Ernesto Ruíz opened the restaurant in 1942, before selling it to his brother Manolín Ruíz, who in turn passed it to current owners Annie Rivera and Tomás J. Molina. Loyal customers come for the traditional mofongo de camarones — with pieces of chicharron dotting the surface and bursting with shrimp in garlic sauce — often paired with other house specialties like medium-rare steak with chimichurri, or fried chicken straight out of the fryer. Get your order with a beer, and finish off your meal with a cafe con leche, or cortadito, made just the way Grandma likes it.

251 C. de San Justo, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico

3. Ajo Del País

253 C. de San Francisco, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
A dish covered in a saucy mix of seafood and cooked chopped vegetables, with a lopsided pile of mofongo in the back.
Seafood mofongo.
Sushella Monclova Chinea

You’ll find garlic in almost every dish at Ajo Del País, which honors the flavor that perhaps best represents Puerto Rican cuisine, but that’s just the starting point for the restaurant to demonstrate the roots of local foods. Along with red snapper, salmon, and fried chicken, the restaurant serves traditional mofongos, many served right in pilones. Go for the version with a topping of octopus salad; the seafood covers the whole dish, but the flavors perfectly balance garlic, oils, and salt, and you can add a twist by swapping the mofongo for the bifongo or trifongo, which include yuca, sweet plantain, or pana (breadfruit). Don’t miss the watermelon or mango mojitos, which cut the rich flavors.

253 C. de San Francisco, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico

4. Palmas El Rincón De Paco

281 C. de San Sebastián, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico

Next to La Verguenza, Palma el Rincón de Paco is a little restaurant that focuses on fresh, local products from Puerto Rico. Try the rich mofongo with lobster tail in salsa criolla, a perky sauce of garlic, peppers, and cilantro designed for fresh seafood, which adds zip to the mashed plantains. Order their abnormally large passionfruit margarita to kick off the night — strongly.

281 C. de San Sebastián, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico

5. La Vergüenza

280 C. Norzagaray, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Mofongo with large chunks of meat and sliced onions in a shallow ceramic bowl.
Meat filled mofongo.
La Vergüenza

It’s hard to find a better combination than mofongo with homemade rum punch, but La Verguenza, set off Calle San Sebastián, improves on the combo with one of the city’s best views of the sea and a lively music scene. Though the place is really more of a bar, the mofongo hits the right notes, with touches of butter, garlic, and salt dancing together nicely — but pour on some mayo-ketchup to make the beat drop on the flavor. La Verguenza offers an affordable night of dinner and dancing — and people do come to dance, so dress appropriately.

280 C. Norzagaray, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico

6. Puerto Criollo

360 C. de Tetuán, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico

Many visitors believe this bar in Old San Juan serves the best mofongo in the city. The version stuffed with shrimp is particularly popular, especially since diners can choose to amp it up with salsa criolla or creamy garlic sauce. Find a shaded spot beneath a patio umbrella and watch the crowds in the plaza.

360 C. de Tetuán, San Juan
00901, Puerto Rico

7. Casa Patria

Carr. 19 km. 6, San Juan, 00926, Puerto Rico

This local restaurant was built for family and friends, a community that has only grown stronger together as they’ve endured hurricanes, earthquakes, and the COVID-19 pandemic. The rustic mofongo is buttery and flavorful, best paired with bacalao guisado, a Puerto Rican dish that combines salty cod with tomato sauce, potato, onion, herbs, pepper, and garlic. Enjoy it with their house drink, the refreshing mojito el caminante, which adds a touch of carambola (starfruit) to the usual mint leaves.

Carr. 19 km. 6, San Juan
00926, Puerto Rico

8. Casita Miramar

00907, 605 Av. Miramar, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico
Mofongo topped with shrimp and mussels in a creamy sauce.
Mofongo de yuca stuffed with seafood.
Casita Miramar

This chic house on Avenida Miramar was designed for Doña Aurora, the mastermind behind all the recipes and flavors that are now on the menus at Casita Miramar and Casita Blanca. Aurora’s grandchildren, Jesuito and Leonardo Pérez, now run the emblematic restaurant, where their goal is to maintain their grandma’s traditions. Start your meal with the first-rate bacalaitos (cod fritters) served with a green banana broth, or the buñuelos de malanga (taro cakes). Then dig into their popular mofongo de yuca stuffed with seafood. The cassava brings a rich base to a soft inside, perfectly fried to a crispy shell, with flavors more subtle than sharp. The chicken fricassee is also great with a side order of mofongo and slices of avocado for brightness.

00907, 605 Av. Miramar, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico

9. Guararé Cocina Puertorriqueña

1004 Cll Elisa Cerra, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico
A sauce covered mofongo with shrimp, tomatoes, and cilantro in a deep dish.
Mofongo de camarones.
Guararé Cocina Puertorriqueña

At gastronomy bar Guararé, owners Joseph Boucher Martínez and Annette Giuliani proudly showcase the riches of Puerto Rican agriculture in their comida criolla alongside local music talent. Take a tour through their craft cocktails, made with fresh ingredients like smoked lavender, blueberry syrup, and elderflower. Then explore their mofongo and trifongo, best paired with the churrasco encebollado, skirt steak, and glassy caramelized onion that infuse the mofongo with their juices.

1004 Cll Elisa Cerra, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico

10. La Alcapurria Quemá

251 C. Duffaut, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico
A mound of bright mofongo beside pork buried beneath pickled onions, a salad, and side of green sauce.
Mofongo with carne frita encebollada.
La Alcapurria Quemá

Don’t let the name fool you; this place makes good alcapurrias (fritters), but plenty of customers come for the mofongo, which is big and flavorful like everything else they serve. The corner spot is hip and lively, but the homestyle cooking is just like at a chinchorro in the countryside. There are multiple varieties of mofongo on offer made from plantain or fried yuca, and they might come filled with hefty entrees or with dishes paired alongside. The carne frita encebollada (fried pork chops with caramelized onion) and serenata de bacalao (cold, salty cod salad) are particularly great, especially paired with your beer of choice.

251 C. Duffaut, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico

11. Santaella

219 C. Canals, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico

After working with renowned chefs like Ferran Adrià and Éric Ripert, chef José Santaella has made his own name in Puerto Rico by highlighting traditional cocina criolla in the context of modern gastronomy. His namesake restaurant serves a luxury take on a trifongo of yuca, green plantain, and sweet plantain, finished with bits of salty bacon to hammer home the flavor. It’s served alongside the chef’s own magnificent spin on jumbo shrimp in a pool of creamy garlic sauce. 

219 C. Canals, San Juan
00907, Puerto Rico

12. El Platanal

1596 Cll Bori, San Juan, 00927, Puerto Rico
A mound of mofongo beside a whole fried fish topped with lime wedges beside a salad.
Mofongo with chillo frito.
Zuania Muñiz Meléndez/Eater

El Platanal is a family restaurant that has been going strong for 10 years. Founded by Rafael Hidalgo in the Carolina neighborhood, it’s grown to include locations across the area, including central San Juan and Loiza. The restaurant offers mofongo as an accompaniment to dishes like chillo frito (fried red snapper) and chuleta kan kan (fried pork chop), but even as a side dish it’s an excellent example — simple, stuffed with chicharron, and dotted with caramelized onions that keep the mofongo buttery. With a soft, heavenly texture inside, the mofongo avoids getting dense or dry as you work your way through it, leaving plenty of time to enjoy the flavor. There’s a decent drinks menu too, so pair your meal with a Cuba libre, mojito, beer, or wine.

1596 Cll Bori, San Juan
00927, Puerto Rico

13. El Cuchifrito

1552 PR-25 Lote 23, San Juan, 00923, Puerto Rico
A sauce-covered mofongo with pickled onion, chicharrones, and lime wedge on top.
Mofongo with fish in criolla sauce.
Pablo Rosas

Among the kiosks at Lote 23, an outdoor “gastronomic park” of food stalls, you’ll find chef Pablo Rosas serving traditional Puerto Rican dishes at El Cuchifrito. Specially for the #mofongolover, Rosas scratch-cooks mofongo from plantain, sweet potato, yuca, or a trifongo of all three, which diners can then customize with their choice of steak in demi-glace, carne frita with pickled onions, fish in criolla sauce, or surf and turf with carne frita plus shrimp or fish. Dishes are served in compostable bowls, so you can enjoy your meal at the picnic tables at the center of the park, or take it to go.

1552 PR-25 Lote 23, San Juan
00923, Puerto Rico

14. Trópiko

157 C. O'Neill, San Juan, 00918, Puerto Rico

At Trópiko, mofongo translates perfectly into the fast-casual bowl format, with mashed plantains serving as the base for toppings like arroz mamposteao (tomato-spiked rice and beans), fresh vegetables, and your choice of proteins. You can build your own mofongo plate, or go with one of the house specialties. The Boricua comes with rice and beans, carne frita (fried pork), caramelized onion, sweet plantain, bacon, and mayo-ketchup, while the El Tropical consists of bifongo with mamposteao, steak, caramelized onion, arañitas (nests of fried plantains that resemble a spider’s web), shredded cheese, avocado, and the house sauce, Trópiko aioli. The most popular, though, might be La Vaya, which consists of arroz mamposteao, avocado, ropa vieja, and a drizzle of Trópiko aioli. Pair your meal with a flavored mojito served in a cute pouch.

157 C. O'Neill, San Juan
00918, Puerto Rico

15. La Casita Blanca

351 C. Tapia, San Juan, 00912, Puerto Rico

For more than 30 years, La Casita Blanca has been representing Puerto Rican flavors in magazines and attracting luminaries from the culinary world. The whitewashed wood walls and interior overflow with foliage, making it a magnet for visitors posting food pics to Instagram. Despite the hype, the restaurant still delivers on flavor. The shrimp mofongo is pierced with red peppers and shredded carrots, garnished with parsley, and presented on a plantain leaf with a side of mayo-ketchup and a special shot of rum with a coffee bean, symbolizing money, health, and love.

351 C. Tapia, San Juan
00912, Puerto Rico

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