Inca Food

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

The Inca, inhabiting much of what is now peru, had only recently established their empire when the Spaniards arrived in force in the 1530s and toppled them. In this respect and in their more southerly location they were different from the ancient Maya and the Aztecs, with whom it is natural to compare them (see aztec food and maya food). Among other differences, one of the most important was that, whereas the Aztecs had no large domesticated mammals, the Inca had two; the llama and the alpaca; and they also had available for food the vicuña and the guanaco (relations of the llama), various deer, and the domesticated guinea pig.