Inka Mama's Peruvian Cuisine

3930 S. Bristol St.
Santa Ana, CA 92704
Best Of


  • Sun-Thu 11:30am-9pm, Fri-Sat 11:30am-10pm
  • $$
  • Kid Friendly, Patio/Sidewalk Dining, Takeout
  • Reservations Accepted
Never mind that the origins of saltado are more Chinese than Incan, or that ceviche is actually the country’s national dish. For a lot of Americans, saltado is the representative meal of a nation most of us only know for pan flutes and Macchu Picchu. Saltado is the gateway drug. And the saltado that Inka Mama’s sears in its woks here, across from South Coast Plaza, is the kind of dish that should indoctrinate even more Peruvian-food converts. Served on a rectangular plate and next to a rectangular-molded wall of moist rice enriched with chicken broth, it’s a never-ending Andean range of food. And as with all good saltados, the fries are still crisp, the steak tender and the red onion wilted just to that point at which its harshness has been cooked out but it hasn't lost its snap. Most important, this saltado isn’t wet or overly soupy. There are just enough of its cumin-and-soy stir-fry leavings to soak up with the rice, but not too much that it dampens its resolve. Those new to the restaurant should also consider the Piqueo Andino, a gigantic sampler plate of patiently braided empanadas bursting meat juice, a dense tamal, papa a la huancaina, and ruddy piles of boneless fried chicken the Peruvians call chicharon. It’s one of the most expensive offerings, but if you’re a Peruvian-food virgin, this platter is second only to saltado as the best way to pop your cherry.

Related Stories (3)

  • Edwin's Top Five Drinks of 2013
    Thursday, December 26, 2013 at 6 a.m. by Edwin Goei

    As I mentioned before, when I troll for drinks to feature, I'm looking for funny names or weird ingredients. And if it has an umbrella on it, even better. My list has a lot of these kinds of drinks, and one beer. So let's get to my ...

  • At Inka Mama's, Mami Knows Best
    Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 4:30 a.m. by Edwin Goei

    There used to be a different Peruvian restaurant at the very spot Inka Mama's has recently claimed as its fourth Orange County location. By all accounts, it did a very capable plate of lomo saltado, a dish all Peruvian restaurants w...

  • Pisco Sour at Inka Mama's, Our Drink of the Week!
    Friday, March 22, 2013 at 7:30 a.m. by Edwin Goei

    To be honest, I usually avoid ordering Pisco Sour, or that bubble-gum-flavored Inka Cola, or anything other than plain ol' ice water whenever I visit a Peruvian restaurant. I am forever in search of a properly made saltado--that cla...

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