Costa Rican Vigorón Recipe

Costa Rican salad with lime, chicharron, chimichurri sauce and yuca.

This popular Costa Rican street food combines chopped cabbage, tomatoes, onion and chicharrones for a refreshingly crispy and delightful salad as popular at the beach as it is when made at home.

costa rican salad with lime, chicharron, chimichurri sauce and yuca

About This Vigorón Recipe

Like many popular Costa Rican dishes, the Costa Rican vigorón is an easy to prepare mix of several popular Costa Rican recipes combined to make a unique dish. Made from chicharrones (fried pork rinds or pork belly), a cabbage and chicmichurri salad and with boiled yuca (cassava) and boiled green plantains in the mix, this dish is usually served cold and could almost be called a salad. Almost.

I was first introduced to this dish in the port city of Puntarenas, where vigorón is sold by street vendors on almost every corner. While a traditional vigorón is served without utensils and wrapped in a plantain leaf, today’s modern version is usually heaped into a plastic bag and served with a fork. At home, I like to serve it in a fairly large bowl at the table. 

The recipe evokes tico memories of hot summer days on the beach and therefore is generally served cold- even the crispy pork rinds. You cand find vigorón with pork rinds made of just skin, and those made with pork meat.

Like the Costa Rican gallo pinto recipe, there is some debate over whether or not this recipe is Costa Rican or Nicaraguan. Seems the Nicaraguan version doesn’t include the plantains but otherwise is prepared in exactly the same way.  

This is more of a street food than a restaurant dish, but you can sometimes find it at food stalls and small sodas.

Our Most Popular Costa Rican Recipes:

costa rican salad on a banana leaf with chicharron, lime, cabbage, chimichurri, yuca and green plantain

Recipe – Vigorón Costa Rica

Yield: 4 vigorones

Ingredients:

Instructions:

In a small bowl or on a banana leaf, you will build your vigorón. Start with the shredded cabbage salad, then add yucca and plantain. Scoop a generous amount of chimichurri on top before adding 2-3 pieces of cold chicharrón. Squeeze as much lime juice as you want, and sprinkle salt to taste.

Enjoy with a cold beverage- preferably while strolling along the beach!

boiled plantain, chicharron, cabbage and chimichurri salad

Substitutions

You could substitute chicken or fish for the chicharron, and sometimes people substitute a leafy green salad for the cabbage. 

Variations

Again, the main variation is between Costa Rica and the Nicaraguan vigorón, which is served sans plantain. I like to serve mine with freshly fried chicharrones so they are hot, and drizzle with salsa rosada

This is an easy recipe to make vegan or vegetarian, simply omit the chicharrón!

Serving Suggestions

Vigorón is a spirit! So serve it happy, with good friends, and with love. 😉 Pura Vida!

FAQ

What does vigorón mean? – The short answer is that it’s just the name for this dish. However, there is a medical tablet that is called Vigoron, and urban ledged has it that the woman who created the dish named it after a sign she saw for the pill on the wall near where she was cooking.

Printable Recipe

Yield: 4 vigorones

Costa Rican Vigoron Recipe

Costa Rican salad with lime, chicharron, chimichurri sauce and yuca.

This popular Costa Rican street food combines chopped cabbage, tomatoes, onion and chicharrones for a refreshingly crispy and delightful salad as popular at the beach as it is when made at home.

Prep Time 2 hours
Additional Time 15 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Costa Rican chicharrones
  • 1 head of cabbage, chopped
  • Costa Rican chimichurri
  • 2 cups green plantain, boiled and 
  • 2 cups boiled yuca
  • 4-6 banana leaves
  • 2-3 fresh limes sliced
  • sea salt to taste

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl or on a banana leaf, you will build your vigorón.
  2. Start with the shredded cabbage salad, then add yucca and plantain.
  3. Scoop a generous amount of chimichurri on top before adding 2-3 pieces of cold chicharron.
  4. Squeeze as much lime juice as you want, and sprinkle salt to taste.
  5. Enjoy with a cold beverage- preferably while strolling along the beach!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1765Total Fat: 74gSaturated Fat: 26gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 44gCholesterol: 215mgSodium: 4348mgCarbohydrates: 130gFiber: 16gSugar: 45gProtein: 147g

Please double-check this information with your favorite nutrition calculator.

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    wilhelmina
    March 3, 2020 at 5:29 pm

    This is just delicious! I can’t wait to make it again!