Paraíba cuisine and local culture


In Paraíba, local cuisine and culture have difficulties in relation to infrastructure and services due to the economic and geographic limitations of the state.

The place is crossed by some highways, but it only has two rather nice airports and almost no rail or waterway transport.


The Port of Cabedelo is the state's logistics center and is responsible for most of the marketing of local products.


When it comes to urban services, the power and light network has improved in recent years, but it is still very weak in rural areas.

Paraíba cuisine and local culture

In the sertão region of Paraíba, it is necessary to invest in water because of the drought. But there are many obstacles to providing this service, especially in areas farther away from major centers.

Culture of Paraíba

The state of Paraíba is known throughout Brazil for its cultural richness. The regional traditions of religious and June festivals are very much alive and attract tourists from many places, in Brazil and the world.

Paraíba cuisine and local culture
Paraíba cuisine and local culture

Saint John of Campina Grande

If you talk about popular festivals in Brazil, you have to remember São João de Campina Grande, which takes place for 30 days.

More than 2 million tourists visit the event, which values traditional northeastern festivals with music, popular culture, religiosity and typical food.

São João de Campina Grande is on the calendar of the main popular festivals by Embratur and the Ministry of Tourism.

There are also folkloric festivals such as folguedos and cavalhadas, in addition to the preservation of traditional dances such as coco de roda, ciranda and xaxado.


It is the expression of Northeastern history and culture, Brazilian popular dance originated in the Agreste and sertão of Pernambuco, much practiced by cangaceiros in the region to celebrate their victories.

In music, forró, xote and baião are highlights.

Paraíba is also the land of important Brazilian writers, such as Ariano Suassuna, Augusto dos Anjos, Pedro Américo and José Lins do Rego. In art, craftsmanship is an important cultural practice, with pieces made of clay, leather and different types of embroidery.


In terms of cuisine, Paraíba is known for its typical dishes, such as goat buchada, couscous, sun-dried meat and stewed goat.

From the coast to the hinterland, it is one of the best places to try typical northeastern food, with indigenous, African and Portuguese influences, in addition to traditional dishes from Paraíba.

Paraíba cuisine and local culture 1
Paraíba cuisine and local culture 1

Tapioca or Beiju

Tapioca is of indigenous origin, a typical dish of the entire northeast region. In the native language, Tupi-Guarani, it meant “home bread”. It's easy and cheap to make, made with cassava. In Paraíba, beiju is usually stuffed with butter and coalho cheese, but it can also have sun-dried meat, ham, scrambled eggs and other fillings.


Paraiba cuisine has many dishes with corn, such as mugunzá, more common during the June festivities. Popular in other states, with the name of Canjica. The recipe uses corn, milk and sugar, and is a kind of sweet stew that can be made with cinnamon, cloves and even meat broth. In the Northeast, what is called canjica is curau.


Couscous originated in Africa and became a popular dish in many Brazilian homes, especially in the Northeast. In Paraíba, the most common couscous is made with corn flour and steamed. It can be the main course for breakfast or lunch, or accompany dinner with milk, eggs, butter or meat.


Buchada is made with entrails, such as kidneys, liver and viscera, cooked in bags made from the animal's stomach.

The most common are buchada de bode and buchada de ox. It had influence in the colonization of Brazil and the Portuguese adapted it from a dish called “maranho”.

It is more common in the interior of the state and is a heavy and elaborate dish, ideal for gathering the whole family on Sundays.

Baião de Dois

Baião de dois is a classic in the Northeast, especially in Ceará cuisine, and is also one of the best typical foods in Paraíba.

It's basically a mixture of rice, beans and seasonings like bottled butter, chives and cilantro, served together.

The ideal bean is green beans. The most common version includes sun-dried meat or minced sausage.

Well dressed

The tidy is not exactly a typical dish, but it is a way of serving traditional foods.

The name means “tidy” because when it is served, the portions are placed neatly side by side.

The original way to serve the tidy is accompanied by vinaigrette, sun-dried meat, rice and cassava.

For an even more Paraiban taste, it is possible to add bottled butter.

Sun Meat Board

Sun-dried meat is one of the main typical foods of Paraíba and there are several restaurants specializing in it in João Pessoa.

The name “carne de sol” comes from the fact that, in the old days, it was dried in the sun to last longer.

Although the process has been modernized, sun-dried meat remains a favorite in Paraíba cuisine.

Shrimp, Fish and Seafood

On the coast of Paraíba, it is common to find seafood dishes.

Recipes and side dishes vary a lot, but it is common to find shrimp rodízios in restaurants in João Pessoa, served fried, boiled, in sauces, bobos, risottos and other forms.

Sweet rice

Sweet rice is one of the most traditional desserts in Brazil, especially in the Northeast.

During the big June festivals in July, like the one in Campina Grande, it is likely to be the most consumed sweet in Brazil. The origin is uncertain, but it is believed to have emerged in Asia, specifically China or Vietnam. It is made by cooking rice in milk and sugar, seasoned with lemon, cinnamon and other spices.


In Paraíba, local cuisine and culture are traditional and its people keep their traditions alive. Among them are popular religious and June festivals, such as the Biggest Saint John in the World in Campina Grande.

In addition, the cuisine of Paraíba is full of typical dishes, including goat buchada, couscous, sun-dried meat, baião de dois and rice pudding, among others.

The cuisine has indigenous, African and Portuguese influences and is one of the best places to experience typical northeastern cuisine.

The sertão region suffers from drought, and there are economic and geographic limitations in relation to infrastructure and services, but the cuisine and local culture are nationally recognized for their richness and diversity.