Trinidad Cucumber Chow Recipe

Cucumber chow is a refreshing, tasty snack made by mixing chopped cucumber pieces, chadon beni (culantro), salt, pepper and sometimes garlic. It can be served immediately or left in the fridge to chill and marinate.

You can use the same seasonings to make mango chow, pineapple chow and more.

cucumber chow in a white bowl with strips of chadon beni and a lime wedge on the sides of the bowl

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Ingredients for cucumber chow

For this recipe, I used cucumbers (small Kirby cucumbers), chadon beni (also called culantro and recao), salt, fresh pepper and lime or lemon juice (which is optional).

Chadon beni is the main flavoring for the chow and adds a strong, sharp herbaceous taste. It can be substituted with cilantro or Caribbean green seasoning.

I’m using a scotch bonnet pepper here but you can use pimento, chili, cayenne or even black pepper. Pepper sauce is another easy substitute to try.

There are no rules when it comes to making chow. So, you can add and subtract whichever ingredients you like from the recipe. You can also add in other fruits and veggies to the chow. Pineapple, mango, plums and even salted prunes go great here.

How to make cucumber chow trini style

Cucumber chow is incredibly easy to make. To start, wash, peel and slice the Kirby cucumbers. You can leave some of the peel on if you like, but I prefer to remove it. Peel and finely mince the garlic. Wash and mince the chadon beni leaves too.

As for pepper, decide on how spicy you want your chow to be. I prefer less spicy, so I often remove the seeds and pith from the pepper. If you enjoy the burn, the seeds have lots of spicy flavor so leave them in. Or use powdered black pepper, cayenne or even pepper flakes. It’s all up to you.

cucumber chow ingredients

With all the prep done, it’s time to mix everything together. Add the salt and squeeze some lime juice in. Give everything a good toss before covering and refrigerating.

add ingredients to cucumbers

Leaving the chow in the fridge will allow the flavors to soak into the cucumber and make it much more tasty. Serve cold as an afternoon snack or as a healthy side dish for lunch.

finished cucumber chow

Trinidad cucumber chow recipe

cucumber chow in a white bowl with strips of chadon beni and a lime wedge on the sides of the bowl
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5 from 1 vote

Cucumber chow

Trini cucumber chow is a refreshing afternoon snack made with garlic, culantro, pepper, salt and lime juice. All the flavors work so well together to make this a favorite on the island.
Prep Time40 minutes
Cook Time0 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Snack
Cuisine: Caribbean
Keyword: cucumber chow
Servings: 4
Calories: 30kcal
Author: Ros Singh


  • 2 cucumbers (sliced)
  • 1 clove garlic clove
  • 1/8 cup chadon beni leaves (chopped)
  • 1 fresh pepper
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp salt


  • Wash, peel and slice cucumbers.
  • Peel and finely chop garlic.
  • Wash and finely chop chadon beni leaves and pepper.
  • Mix all ingredients together.
  • Cover and refrigerate for 30 mins.
  • Serve cold.

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