San Salvador - Post Report Question and Answers

What typical restaurants, food delivery services, and/or takeout options are popular among expatriates?

Lots of burgers, pizza, some Mexican. UberEats and PedidosYa can bring you almost anything. There's one decent Chinese restaurant in town and apparently one good Korean place, but I've never been. - Oct 2023

Lots of restaurants around, including all the major American fast food chains, if that’s your thing. Just within shouting distance of the Embassy are McDonald’s, Panda Express, Quiznos, Wendy’s, McDonalds, Papa John’s, and a drive-through Starbucks. There’s even a Chuck E. Cheese by Multiplaza (the main mall). There is Chinese and Indian, but it’s not great. You can get good pizza, tacos, and burgers. Tiny producers abound on Instagram, including some of the best yogurt and challah I’ve ever had. You can get almost anything delivered, either via Uber Eats or through the local Hugo app. - Feb 2022

There are some very nice restaurants here with a wide culinary range. A lot of American fast-food which is good if you like it. But also Sushi, Indian, Italian, Burger joints, Mexican, Paella, Thai, healthy food and gluten free options, etc. With Covid, most restaurants went into full on delivery mode. A group called HUGO will deliver practically anything to you for almost nothing. - Aug 2021

There are various restaurants in strip malls near the embassy to include Smash Burger, Koi sushi, and all the fast food chains. There is also pizza delivery. The better restaurants are in Zona/Rosa/San Benito areas. - Jun 2018

Pupusas are delicious, plenty of American chain restaurants, as well as sushi, Indian and Chinese. We eat out much less than in our previous post, because the food scene is nothing spectacular. - Mar 2018

There are many American fast food and chain restaurants here. McDonalds, Burger King, Subway, Starbucks, Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Dominos, Smashburger, Taco Bell, KFC, Olive Garden, Chili’s, Tony Roma’s. Every restaurant delivers, yes even McDonalds.

There are lots of steak houses, sandwich shops, cafes, Italian, Mexican, Seafood, Chinese, etc. You won’t go hungry, but there is nothing I would describe as amazingly delicious, when compared to a foodie city in the US. - Jan 2018

There are many typical restaurants. Pizzas, burgers etc. will deliver. - Nov 2017

Though the grocery shopping options are great, the restaurants are sadly lacking. Most of the food is "just okay," which takes the pleasure out of going out. There are some upscale restaurants with pleasant ambiance, but the food is just bland or not cooked well. - Jul 2016

Every American fast-food chain is here. The restaurants are ok, and reasonably priced. You're not going to get too many gourmet meals here; remember you are in a small city in Central America and you will learn not to be too disappointed. Pupusas are filling, cheap, and very authentically Salvadoran. You'll find hundreds of pupusarias in Antiguo Cuscatlan and Olocuilta; finding your favorite is a fun pastime. And you can get everything delivered to your house. - Dec 2015

The food here is a problem. Salvadoran cuisine (mainly pupusas) is good but just not super interesting. There are very nice restaurants here, but they are all sort of medium-good in terms of food. That said, if you like American chain food they have tons of that here. Probably similar to U.S. prices but I haven't eaten at any of them. There are lots of fun/funky restaurants to explore! - Jun 2015

Everything is here from McDonald's to Ruth's Chris. Prices are a little less than DC and the service is typically good. - Mar 2015

All of them are here, though KFC was shut out by the local Pollo Campero. - Oct 2014

All fast food places in the USA are available. - Jul 2014

All manner of incredibly unhealthy fast food, from McDonald's to a foul local chain called Biggest. Most are at or slightly below US prices. Heart disease and cancer rates are increasing due to dietary negligence. - Apr 2012

There is every flavor of American-style fast food here. It has flooded the country. If this is not your style, you will have to do some searching to find good food in San Salvador (even though there are a lot of restaurants). - Jul 2011

There is every major American fast food chain here except for Arby's and Chick-Fil-A.There is almost every cuisine available here with the notable exception of Indian food. The most expensive restaurant in the country is probably Citron, and that will run you about $100 a couple. Most restaurants are solidly mediocre at best, with few standouts. But it's cheap, with a 10% tip built in, so you don't feel heartbroken when you get a so-so meal for $12. - May 2010

Almost everything from the U.S. is available here for comparable cost. KFC, McDonald's, BK, Wendy's, Pizza Hut (appears to be huge here), as well as local favorites like Los Cebollines (mexican food) and Pollo Campero (a cultural phenomenon).Other non-fast food chains like Tony Roma's, Chili's, Bennigan's, Benihana's, TGIFriday's are all here as well with menus from the US and decent food at comparable U.S. prices. There are nicer restaurants as well - great steak houses (La Hacienda Real), local bistros (a lo nuestro) and a myriad of bakeries, cafes, and other places to eat. Sushi and Chinese fare are available but there are only one or two really good places. I have not found a decent Indian, Lebanese, or Middle Eastern cuisine. Vegetarian options are generally not hard to find in any of the restaurants. - Feb 2009

Subscribe to our newsletter

New book from Talesmag! Honest and courageous stories of life abroad with special needs.

Read More