Bake and Shark: Trinidad’s Iconic Beach Street Food

A Bake and Shark with everything from Trinciti in Queens, NY

What is Bake and Shark?

Bake and Shark is a beloved street food in Trinidad and Tobago; it is known for its delicious combination of fried bread (bake) and fried shark meat. This dish, often found at Maracas Beach, is a testament to Trinidadian culinary ingenuity and cultural heritage.

Trinidad is the Birthplace of Bake and Shark

Bake and Shark has evolved into a culinary staple in the vibrant island republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The dish originated in coastal areas where shark meat was plentiful and has since become a must-try for locals and visitors. Its popularity extends beyond the island, making its way into Caribbean cuisine worldwide.

Indian Influence on Bake and Shark

The Indian influence on Bake and Shark is subtle but notable. The use of spices and green seasoning in marinating the shark reflects the Indian culinary tradition prevalent in Trinidad and Tobago.

Green seasoning, a staple in Trinidadian cooking, often includes herbs like cilantro (chadon beni) and spices commonly used in Indian cuisine.

Additionally, the method of frying bread is reminiscent of Indian fried bread like puri and roti, which have been adapted and integrated into Trinidadian culinary practices due to the significant Indian population on the island.

Why This Trini Delight is The Best Sandwich

Bake and Shark is a distinctive Trini dish. The bake, a type of fried bread made from flour, baking powder, salt, and water, is crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. It is a very different experience compared to the traditional Trini roti.

The Shark, typically blacktip, is seasoned with green seasoning, salt, and pepper before being perfectly fried. Alternatives like catfish and kingfish are also popular, catering to those hesitant about eating shark meat.

Maracas Bay is The Home of Bake and Shark

Maracas Beach is synonymous with Bake and Shark. Bake and Shark has its roots in the coastal communities of Trinidad & Tobago, where shark meat was a standard part of the local diet.

Initially, fishermen would use their daily catch to create a simple but satisfying meal by pairing fried shark with “bake,” a type of fried bread.

Over time, this humble dish became a popular street food, especially at Maracas Beach, where vendors like Richard’s Bake and Shark popularized it as a beach food.

The dish’s fame grew internationally, attracting food enthusiasts and celebrities, including Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmerman on Bizarre Foods.

The Caribbean Street Food Experience

Bake and Shark is a unique Trinidad and Tobago street food experience. Vendors typically serve it with an array of condiments, such as ketchup, pepper sauce, garlic sauce, tamarind sauce, and mango chutney.

These toppings and fresh vegetables, such as lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and coleslaw, allow diners to customize their shark sandwich.

The Preparation of Bake and Shark


  • Bake: Flour, baking powder, salt, water, and butter.
  • Shark: Blacktip shark or alternatives like catfish or kingfish, green seasoning, salt, pepper, and flour.


  1. Fried Bake: Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and water to form a dough. Rest, then roll into discs and fry until golden.
  2. Fried Shark: Season the shark with green seasoning, salt, and pepper. Coat it in flour and fry it in hot oil until crispy.

Condiments and Customizations

Condiments are crucial to the Bake and Shark experience. 

  • Pepper Sauce
  • Garlic Sauce
  • Tamarind Sauce
  • Mango Chutney
  • Ketchup
  • Coleslaw
  • Honey Mustard
  • Everything Sauce

Each condiment adds a unique flavor, enhancing the dish’s overall taste. Chadon beni (cilantro) sauce is a traditional favorite with an extra layer of flavor.

Read: Why is Callaloo Trinidad’s National dish?

Bake and Shark: Beyond Trinidad

While Bake and Shark is deeply rooted in Trinidadian culture, its appeal has spread globally. In places like Queens, New York, and Canada, Caribbean restaurants offer their own versions of this beloved street food, bringing a taste of Trinidad and Tobago to international shores.

Trinidadian fashion blogger Kamara Williams took producer Doyinsola Oladipo to Trinciti Roti Shop and Restaurant in Queens, New York, to try bake and shark for the first time.

A Trinbagonian Treasure

Bake and Shark is more than just fast food; it’s a cultural experience that encapsulates the flavors and traditions of Trinidad and Tobago. Whether enjoyed at Maracas Beach or in Queens, NY, this dish continues to captivate food lovers with its delicious simplicity and rich heritage.

Explore the world of Trinidadian street food by trying Bake and Shark, a dish that perfectly blends tradition, flavor, and creativity. From the crispy fried bread to the succulent fried Shark, each bite is a celebration of Trinidadian cuisine.