Category Archives: Street Vendors

El Frío Frío

El Frío Frío/ Flavored Ice Vendor

El Frío Frío, also known as yun-yun, is one of the more popular street vendors in Dominican Republic. His nice and cold and sweet ice is a must have on a hot Dominican day.

Making a shaved ice frio-frio in Ciudad Colonial

This vendor pushes a brightly painted cart yelling out “Frío, frío”. Along with him yelling is a buzzing sound made by all the sweet loving bees following along.

In this cart is a collection of glass bottles with many different fruit flavored syrups and a large block of ice. He scrapes the ice with a metal scraper, puts it in the cup and adds whatever syrup you would like. It is the same as a snow cone but the syrups are so much better, they are made with a variety of fresh local fruits.

Yunyun – Frio Frio – Snow cone – Shaved Ice

Some of the Frió Frió carts are equipt with little motors so they can make blended fruit drinks also.

Caution for the tourists

The ice may not be made with bottled water so beware. Always ask before you take a chance with ice in the street.


Cocoero/ Coconut Street Vendor

El Cocoero street vendor can be spotted pushing a cart laden with coconuts (called coco here). At times this vendor will have a permanent spot and will not move his cart.

Cocoero selling coconut water in the streets of Colonial Zone

Coconut water is very fulfilling on a hot day and will give you a little energy boost.

Purchasing one of these green fresh coconuts can be tasty as well as entertaining and a little bit frightening. The vendor will grab the nut of choice firmly in his hand. He then will pull out a very sharp machete. Swinging the blade with great precision he commences to cutting of the top f the coconut by making slices in an angle around the top leaving a little point. One swift swipe across the top makes a small opening making the sweet water accessible. This water is called coco de auga.

Cocoero selling coco de auga


the sweet liquid can be one directly from the coco, which can be messy, or you can use a straw. You can also choose to have the man pour it into a foam glass. If you wish you can add ice (which will cost a little extra) and sugar to the liquid.

While you are enjoying your beverage the vendor may offer to cut the coco in half there is any meat inside. Out comes the machete again and with amazing skill he will chop the coconut in half. This will make accessing the white, semi-slimy meat inside easier. Eating the meat can be done directly from the shell using a piece of the shell that was cut away earlier or it can be placed in a cup.

The cost

is about $40 to $60 pesos, maybe a few pesos more if you want ice or sugar (as of 12/12).


Yaniquequero/ Johnny Cake and Empanada Vendor

El Yaniquequero (pronounced yon-e-kay-key-ero) and his helper usually have a permanent spot to sell these hot treats and does not walk around much. You will see these vendors selling Yaniqueques (Johnnycakes), Empanadas and/or Pastelitos on many street corners. They are usually located in front of places where people gather.

Yaniquequero rolling out the dough

The Johnny Cake vendor will have a little table where he rolls out the dough. Some only sell the dough which is the original Yaniqueque. Other vendors will have containers on the table holding assorted fillings for filling the little dough pockets. Some of the fillings could include eggs, ham, beef, shrimp, cheese, mixed vegetables or other special items. Beside the table is a pot filled with boiling oil where the dough will be dropped into for frying.

Yaniquequero cooking Empanadas con Huevos boiling in the pot.

Popular and tasty these fried dough pieces and little stuffed pie type morsels are a must try item for a snack on the go.

The prices

for the plain piece of dough Yaniqueque are usually around RD$5 pesos. The filled pockets prices may range from around $25 to $50 pesos and sometimes more depending on the filling (as of 11/2017).