Peru is one of the countries with the greatest cultural diversity on the planet. Hence, it offers an infinity of flavors and culinary versions that make its cuisine one of the best in the world. For 9 consecutive years, Peru was awarded as the first gastronomic destination in the annual editions of the World Travel Awards. This ensures that your visit will not only be a heavenly journey of sounds and colors but also of unforgettable flavors that will melt your palate and reduce it to a unique one: the Peruvian flavor. But we all know that there is no good food without the company of a good Peruvian drink, and today you will know the drinks that you have to try before leaving Peru. Join us together with Machu Travel Peru to know some of the most important traditional Peruvian drinks.

The most consumed traditional Peruvian drinks

1. Chicha Morada

chicha morada peruvian drinks

First, we have the delicious and famous Chicha Morada, a popular drink made of purple corn. The history of this Peruvian drink and its elaboration goes back even to times older than the Incas. Where the pre-Hispanic cultures were lucky enough to have achieved and devised the elaboration of this refreshing juice. Regarding the biodiversity in Peru, we have more than 50 types of corn, more than in any other country, and each one of these has a different use. Of course, the purple corn is one of the many unique and native varieties of Peru.

This drink, as its name indicates, is prepared with a particular species of corn, Ckolli -for its name in Quechua-, which has the peculiarity of having a purple grain. But it is not the only ingredient used to prepare this drink. You will also need pineapple, lemon, cinnamon, apple, and sugar to taste. But if you thought it was just a refreshing drink you are wrong, Chicha Morada has a wide variety of health benefits. It is good for fighting diabetes, certain types of cancer, obesity, a perfect antioxidant, and an excellent anti-inflammatory.

This non-alcoholic drink is usually enjoyed with endless typical dishes, and it is the perfect company at Peruvian lunchtimes. It is sweet and refreshing, especially for those sunny and warm days. One of the most recognized traditional Peruvian drinks among locals.

2. Mate de Coca (Coca tea)

peruvian drinks mate de coca

Coca mate is one of the best-known beverages in Peru, especially in the Andean regions. Mate de Coca is a tea made with coca leaves boiled in hot water. This Peruvian drink is very popular in Peru and is drunk mainly to avoid altitude sickness or to reduce its effects for its stimulating and relaxing benefits. Its use dates back thousands of years before the creation of the famous drug (Inca’s times) and it is still being drunk in the most renowned restaurants, hotels, and families of high Peruvian cities, like Cusco, Ayacucho, Puno, and country central Andean.

Is Coca tea a drug?

coca peruvian drinks

It is a good occasion to eliminate any prejudice regarding this plant because the Coca leaf is not the same as the drug. Yes, It is true that Coca leaves contain the alkaloids that are extracted to produce the drug. But the amount of alkaloids in a single leaf is relatively small. You would literally need to drink thousands upon thousands of leaves in a very short time to even get a relatively similar effect.

However, pay attention, a single cup of Mate de Coca can give a positive result in a drug test. Therefore, if you are a professional athlete or any other person who is subject to regular drug tests, we recommend you don’t drink this traditional Peruvian drink on your visit to Peru. The Andean country allows its consumption. Unfortunately, the same does not happen in other countries.

3. Emoliente

emoliente peruvian drinks

The Emoliente is one of the unique Peruvian drinks that you can get to taste. This Peruvian drink is a very popular infusion of herbs tasted during winter. It is usually prepared with a herbal base that includes barley, dried horsetail, flaxseed, banana leaf, and alfalfa sprouts among other things. It is a characteristic drink of cold mornings and nights. Since it is frequently taken hot or warm. While the flavor is somewhat peculiar and difficult to describe. It is a fruity tea-like combination with a somewhat gelatinous texture depending on its preparation.

This Peruvian drink is one of the most iconic traditional drinks that you can discover on your trip through the country. The locals talk a lot about this drink and its beneficial health properties due to its great mix of herbs. Usually, the Peruvians drink it regularly after their different activities.

Emoliente street stalls are found in every street corner in the different destinations of Peru. In them, the vendors make the Emoliente adding its own special ingredients to the mix, and it is impossible not to be curious and approach one of them. As a separate note, we have to say that Emoliente is considered one of the best Peruvian superfoods today. Even, if your stomach doesn’t feel very good during your trip, we recommend you try the Emollient and its benefits.

4. Pisco Sour

pisco sour peruvian drinks

It is time to talk about the world-famous Pisco Sour. This drink has left an indelible mark on those fortunate enough to have the opportunity to taste its refreshing bittersweet flavor. Pisco Sour is the national drink of Peru. It is so special to Peruvians that it has its own public holiday in honor of it. The national day of Pisco Sour is celebrated every first Saturday in February.

This exquisite Peruvian drink has lemon juice, Peruvian Pisco, syrup, egg white, ice, and cinnamon powder. It has a delicious and refreshing taste. And this is due to citrus tones that make it very easy to drink. Four or five shots of this drink will have you wondering how drunk you are! This cocktail is said to have been invented by an American in Lima to later be drunk by Peruvians and perfected. Of course, the Pisco liquor is its main ingredient and also usually the ingredient in other iconic Peruvian drinks such as Chilcano. Nowadays, the Pisco Sour is usually the obligatory drink in special Peruvian dinners.

Now you know, Pisco Sour is our flagship Peruvian drink, and it would be a sin not to try it before leaving our country. You can find it in any bar in Peru, or restaurant accompanied by some Peruvian gastronomy dishes, but don’t be so confident.

5. Chilcano

chilcano peruvian drink

Chilcano is one of the Peruvian drinks that you can not stop trying. The original recipe does not contain Pisco, lemon juice, or Ginger Ale. However, the drink was adapted to local ingredients, and now it is the most consumed drink in different Peruvian bars, restaurants, and hotels. Its preparation consists of Pisco Acholado, Ginger Ale, lemon juice, some drops of angostura bitters, and ice cubes, all of them shook in stainless metal cups stacked against each other. After, the mix is served in cold glasses, adorned with a slice of lemon. This Peruvian drink is refreshing and has a good taste in the mouth.

History said that its name “Chilcano” was taken from the ancient and traditional Peruvian fish head soup. But, Why? Because the Peruvian realized that both were good for the hangover. Therefore, if you pass in front of some Peruvian restaurant, bar, or hotel, ask for it. You will not regret it!

6. Aguaymanto Juice

aguaymanto peruvian drinks

Have you ever heard the word Aguaymanto? Probably not, and in fact, it is an endemic fruit of Peru. It is a kind of small yellow tomato covered with a gold leaf in the depths of its mysterious appearance. It has a special and unforgettable flavor worthy of being served in multiple ways and versions. Also, It has many culinary uses, from jams and delicacies to a delicious meal, and it is ideal to accompany any day, or better yet, to hydrate you after a long day. It is very easy to prepare this Peruvian drink from Aguaymanto. Peel a few of these small tomatoes and blend them with about three cups of water, and you will have it ready to serve. Just listening to it will encourage you to taste it and refresh your palate as soon as possible.

This traditional Peruvian food can be tasted in local Peruvian restaurants around the country. However, if you stay in any Peruvian Amazon city (the origin place of this fruit), you will find it in every street corner (stalls). So, we encourage you to try it!

7. Ayrampo

ayrampo peruvian drinks

Ayrampo is prickly purple cactus seeds that grow in rocky terrains, such as gravel hills of Cusco, Ayacucho, Puno inter alia. These seeds have a purple color and the Peruvian families use them to prepare them boiled in hot water, adding Cinnamon Sticks, Cloves, even some drops of lemon juice. This fresh Peruvian drink is consumed in local Peruvian cuisines, and it is the perfect company for many daily dishes. It consumes to heal mouth sores, relieve fever and stomach heartburn, among other benefits. For all these reasons, this traditional Peruvian drink come to be consumed since the Peruvian colonial times.

Therefore, if you have the opportunity, buy some Ayrampo seeds in any local markets around all Peru, and prepare a refreshing beverage with them.

8. Uvachado

uvachado peruvian drinks

We have had enough of the traditional Peruvian drinks, now is the time to get to know some delicious liquors to taste in Peru. Let’s start with the Uvachado. This liquor has an amusing name, but it does not differ much from others around the world. Uvachado is one of the most emblematic Peruvian drinks in the jungle region, and although many people think it is a kind of Peruvian wine, it is not. It is also made from grapes, but the difference is that this drink has two important ingredients: our Peruvian Pisco and honey. This drink is made from a black grape produced in the jungle sector of Peru. So now you can imagine how sweet it tastes. Its soft sweetness attracts numerous curious consumers.

The people of the Amazon attribute this sacred drink, mystical powers since it will not only give energy to your body but also happiness and joy. And above all, it will enhance your sexual instinct and desires. A truly aphrodisiac drink for those moments of passion. In addition, It is one of the number one export products of the San Martín Region.

9. Chicha de Jora

chicha de jora peruvian drinks

We have already shown you how to prepare our Chicha Morada made from Purple Corn, but now we will show you how to prepare a different drink made from fermented corn. The Chicha de Jora is a very popular and traditional Peruvian drink of the Andean People. Prepared hundreds of years ago by the Pre-Inca cultures together with our Chicha Morada. The flavor of this Andean liquor is bitter – depending on the degree of fermentation it has – but nowadays, it can also be sweet. You can taste both versions that will mark your palate in a way that you will not forget.

Definitely, the Chicha de Jora was the favorite drink of the Incas, many chroniclers and historians affirm that, and It is one of the traditional Peruvian drinks very similar to a kind of beer. With the exception that it was made with Jora corn. Jora corn is a type of yellowish corn that is native to the Andes. The process to make this drink is very similar to the production of a normal beer. The yellow corn kernels are left to ferment along with malt sugars in giant clay pots, buried in the ground for several days. The time of fermentation depends on the Chichero, the person responsible for its preparation who usually works in Picanterias (Traditional and ancient Cusco restaurants where spicy foods are served) and Chicherias (Traditional and ancient Cusco bars)

Picanterias and an ancient custom

peruvian drinks in picanterias

Regarding Chicherias and Picanterias, these can be found in the streets of the Historic Center of Cusco and Sacred Valley, where red bags or rags are hung over the end of bamboo sticks. These kinds of signs are situated over their doors and can be viewed by all persons.

Before drinking it, the local people usually throw a little quantity of Chicha on the ground, giving thanks to Pachamama, saying the following words: “Pachamama, Santa Tierra”.  In Inca’s cosmology, Pachamama, a Quechua word, means the earth that brings them all the food products and Santa Tierra means Saint Earth. Therefore, if you have the occasion to prove it, please, don’t break the tradition.

10. Frutillada

frutillada peruvian drinks

Frutillada is also known as Chicha de Frutilla and is a sweeter version of Chicha de Jora since the strawberries cover the bitter taste. This is one of the most popular traditional Peruvian drinks in the Andean regions of Peru. Frutillada is a type of Chicha, but unlike being made with corn, it is produced with wild strawberries. The drink is made with strawberries, sugar, and Chicha de Jora, but beet juice is occasionally added to strengthen the color. Consumed in Peru since long before the Incas, it used to be served in ceramic cups called K’eros. But now it’s served in a special pint-sized glass. A delicious Inca drink to drink at any time of the year.

The favorite place to find this delicious drink is in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.

11. Inka Kola

inca kola peruvian drinks

Inka Kola is a soft drink with a clear, bright yellow color and a very sweet taste that resembles the taste of bubble gum. The origins of this soft drink date back to 1910 when a foreign couple opened a small shop, where they sold homemade carbonated drinks, its drink of higher consumption was one of lemon verbena and banana flavor. Its name? Inka Cola.

It was not until 1935, with the celebration of the 400 years of the founding of Lima, that the couple decided to produce a unique drink with the flavor previously mentioned. This drink served to commemorate the event and everything that it brought with it. The drink became extremely popular and became a classic drink to accompany Peruvian food. Nowadays, you can find it in restaurants in all Peruvian cities and around the world. Therefore, Inka Cola is the national soda that accompanies all Peruvian food.

The soda that defeated Coca Cola

coca cola and inca kola peruvian drinks

In the United States, there is a great rivalry between Coca-Cola and Pepsi, the two most popular soft drinks in the American country. But, when Coca-Cola Company wanted to enter the Peruvian market in 1999, it found a strong Peruvian trademark that remained in the first place of the national preference, Coca-Cola began to worry.

In this sense, a fierce battle was established for months for the preference of Peruvian people. However, Coca-Cola and all its propagandistic machinery couldn’t dethrone the Inka Kola in the first place. The result? The American conglomerate had to buy the Inka Kola, with just one condition, they would have to keep the name and brand in Peru. So they did.

Today the brand is owned by Coca-Cola and it still being the favorite Peruvian drink soda in all Peruvian kitchens.

12. Cusqueña

cusquena peruvian drinks

Cusqueña is another strong Peruvian trademark. Since 1908, the local beer began to be drunk in a national market that had a tradition in consumption of fermented beverages (Chicha de Jora). In the year before mentioned, the German Ernesto Gunther and other local people found the German Brewery Günther & Tidow S.A. Ltd. So, they began to produce a golden beer of roasted hops that conquered the Peruvian palate, immediately. A side note is to say that the Peruvian consumes more beer than Pisco and Cusqueña is one of their favorite beers, without a doubt.

Nowadays, it is one of the most consumed Peruvian drinks around the world (Cusqueña is cataloged as a premium trademark beer), and don’t drink it, at least once, through your Peru trip, would be a big mistake. So, what are you waiting for!

13. Other Peruvian drinks

peruvian drinks

The gastronomic culture of Peru is, without a doubt, what most know about this magical country. Peruvian drinks, although not so well known, also deserve our full attention and tasting. Beyond the drinks like Pisco Sour and Chilcano, there is a great variety of non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks that will surprise us. Even Peruvian Coffee has a completely different flavor from other parts of the world. Don’t miss out on everything Peru has to offer. You also cannot miss out on the only beers found in our country. From the wonderful Pilsen to the unique Cusqueña. There is even a great variety of craft beers that you cannot stop trying. And what is a beer called in Peru? Beer in Peru is known as “Cerveza”.


With that said, let your experiences critique our exotic traditional Peruvian drinks, and let your imagination kindly decode our history. Together with Machu Travel Peru, we are quite sure that your palate will be delighted to try our great variety. If you want to know more about our tours, do not hesitate to ask our advisors. Our team can organize a wide variety of food tours to delight your senses. We would be delighted to help you with anything you need to organize the trip of your dreams.

Peru has so much to offer, it can be hard to know where to start. With many years of experience in the tourism sector, Machu Travel Peru is happy to help with anything regarding your trip to Machu Picchu and any tours around it. Make your Machu Picchu experience an unforgettable one!