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Panamanian Sancocho – GW Recipe Box

What does the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Columbia, and Panama all have in common? Sancocho. Surely other things as well, but today we’re focusing on this delicious chicken and vegetable stew popular throughout these countries. Sancocho is so beloved among Panamanians that it is the country’s national dish. Follow the recipe below for this ridiculously easy and tasty stew!

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Servings: 6-8 friends


  • 1 roasting chicken, cut into pieces (3-4 whole chicken breasts can be substituted)
  • 1 lb yam, peeled and cut into pieces (sweet potato can be substituted)
  • 1 lb green plantain, peeled and cut into pieces
  • 1 lb yucca root (cassava), peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 ears of corn, each cut in 3
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano (or 2 teaspoons dried oregano)
  • 2 tablespoons culantro, minced (chopped cilantro leaves and stems can be substituted)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • salt and pepper


  1. Season the chicken with the garlic, oregano, salt and pepper
  2. In a heavy pot, brown the seasoned chicken in the olive oil over a medium flame and allow to sweat
  3.  Add the culantro/cilantro, onion and enough stock to cover the chicken (Set a little culantro/cilantro aside for garnish at the end)
  4. Bring to a boil and reduce to a low simmer for 20 minutes
  5. Add the root vegetables and remaining stock, cooking until everything softens, about one hour
  6. Add the corn and green pepper and cook 15 minutes more, until tender
  7. Salt and pepper to taste
  8. Garnish with the reserved chopped culantro/cilantro and serve with white rice

Feel free to substitute or add other root vegetables such as parsnips and carrots. Sanocho keeps well in the freezer and only gets better with time!

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