Simple Trini pineapple chow

20.3.15 | Recipe by Renz

The epitome of Trinbagonian snacks, chow. Pineapple chow is a mix-up of fresh pineapple with fresh herbs and spices. Making a sweet, salty, and spicy combination that you would not be able to say no to.

Trinidad and Tobago Pineapple Chow

Growing up making chow was a must-do when playing outside. Any fruit we could find was getting picked and chopped up and some salt and pepper added.

That's it. A simple combination of fruit and tang and spice.

Trinidad pineapple chow is a snack you could find on any wayside. We would buy small plastic bags full of chow and just sit and slurp. It's also popularly found being offered at events.

So if you are looking for a quick, tasty snack that would not last very long, please try making this chow.

And if you want something with a little sweeter and salt, try the summer fruit salsa.

You are probably wondering what is chow?

Chow is one of the top street foods in Trinidad and Tobago. It's basically chopped up fresh fruit with salt, pepper, and other options of seasoning depending on your taste.

We usually go for green or half-ripe fruits that are in the tart stage. Don't be limited to that though. Some ripe fruits also make a good chow.

The process is a simpler pickling process as we use the lime juice to help the fruit marinate, then add in some additional flavors. Springing juice and then tart and spicy.

It's one of those snacks you can grab in a bag and walk and eat. It was always a part of our family outings to the beach.

We will "chow" just about anything we can find at this stage. Once a fruit is in season, it can get into a bowl of chow.

Common fruits we use are mango, cherries, watermelon, chennet, mandarin, Caribbean governor plums, pommecythere (June plum/golden apple), and five fingers (Starfruit).

Once it's a fruit (and we even reach to vegetables because there's cucumber), it can be chopped, seasoned, and made into a chow.

Pineapple chow ingredients

What you'll need

This is such an easy recipe all you need is:

  • Pineapple
  • Chadon beni (or cilantro for a substitute)
  • Scotch bonnet pepper
  • Lime juice
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Garlic cloves
  • Pimento pepper (optional)

How to make pineapple chow

The most work you are probably going to do is the cutting up of the pineapple if you are using a whole one.

If your store sells pre-cubed fresh pineapple you can grab a container of those. I do not like using canned pineapple but if you are desperate, you're desperate.

Chop off the top and bottom parts of the pineapple. Peel and cut into the core, then cut the pineapple into bite-sized pieces.

Discard any core pieces. Throw the pineapple pieces in a medium bowl.

Chop everything else up (except the lime) as finely as possible. Add them to the bowl.

Squeeze in your lime juice into bowl and mix well.

The pineapple juice will start flowing and it would mix up with the herbs.

Voila, you just made your first chow. Or second or third Sometimes leaving the chow to sit in the juices for a little while makes it so much more a great treat Some people even prefer eating it cold.

How to make pineapple chow

How long does this last?

Chow can last in the fridge for up to five days once in a tightly sealed container. This is if you used green or half-ripe fruits.

If you happen to use ripe fruits, it would be good for a shorter time.

Can this be made ahead?

Yes, this can be made ahead of time when needed.

In fact, leaving chow to sit for a few hours so that the flavor marinates is normal. Kind of like what we do with conch salad. The longer they sit in the juices, the better it tastes.


If you don't want the chow to be hot, you can omit the seeds of your hot pepper. If you want it to be extremely hot include the membrane and the seeds. Or you can just use pepper sauce/hot sauce to amp up the heat level.

If you can't find chadon beni/culantro, then you can use cilantro. This is a milder version, so you can double up the amounts.

If you love pineapple check out some of my other pineapple items:


  1. This dish looks amazing and Thanks for the great recipe!

    1. Hi Deidre,

      You are very welcome. It's something we fight over in our house whenever it's made.. lol

  2. I'm living in Grenada right now, and I wish we had something like this here! Looks like I'll have to grab some fresh pineapple soon. :D

  3. What exactly is a Chadon Beni? Never heard of it

    1. Hey, chadon beni (or shado beni) is also called culantro (not cilantro). I usually find it at caribbean/spanish markets.


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