Have You Ever Eaten Tripe?

by AngelaJohnson

Tripe is a generic name for the stomachs of various animals. Most tripe sold in the United States is from beef.

Cows have four chambers in their stomach. The first is the rumen, the second the reticulum, the third the omasum, and the fourth the abomasum. The first stomach chamber is the "blanket" tripe, the second the "honeycomb" tripe and third is the "bible" or "book" tripe. The last chamber is rarely used because of its texture.

Honeycomb tripe is the most preferred for cooking.

Tripe has a gamey odor, which depends on what animal it comes from and what the animal last ate. The other ingredients cooked with tripe usually mask the odor.

Tripe is usually sold bleached and often is partially cooked. Unprocessed tripe needs to be cooked as long as 12 hours to make it tender enough to chew.

Photo of Tripe in Bowl by Charles Haynes on flickr

How to Prepare and Cook Tripe

spicy tripe soupIn order for tripe to be edible, it must be thoroughly cleaned. When you bring tripe home, you must rinse it thoroughly until the water runs clear and there is no grittiness.

Fresh tripe is a beige color and is usually bleached to make it look more appetizing. Unbleached and uncooked tripe will have more flavor, though. Fresh tripe must be cooked about 12 hours to make it soft and tender, and it'll have more flavor the longer it cooks.

You can also buy pre-cooked tripe that you can season and heat. Cooked tripe can be made into soup, but can also be dipped into fritter batter and deep fried, and served pickled or in a marinade. Tripe is eaten all over the world, and is prepared in many different ways.

 Photo of Spicy Tripe Soup by snowpea&bokchoi on flickr

Fried Tripe Recipe From The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American

by Jeff Smith


2 pounds honeycomb tripe, cut into 2 x 3-inch pieces

1 carrot, chopped

1 onion, peeled and chopped

1 bay leaf

3 egg yolks

2 cups bread crumbs

3 tbsp butter and 3 tbsp olive oil for pan frying

Salt and pepper to taste


Place the tripe in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, drain, and rinse the tripe. Cover the meat with water again and add the carrot, onion, bay leaf, and salt and pepper. Cover the pan and simmer for about 2 hours, until tender.

Drain and cool the tripe. Whip the egg yolks, then dip the tripe into them and then into the bread crumbs. Heat the butter and olive oil in a pan; medium heat. Pan-fry until both sides are nicely browned. 

The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American

Tripe for Sale in Grocery Store

Tripe for sale in grocery store
Tripe for sale in grocery store

Menudo - Spicy Mexican Soup

menudoMenudo is a traditional spicy Mexican soup made with tripe. Many people believe menudo can cure a hangover.

Menudo is usually made with tripe along with beef feet and tendons. Boil the feet and tendons first at a low to medium heat for about 3 hours. Skim off the top layer of floating foam about every 15 minutes for the first hour.

After the first 3 hours, add the tripe along with garlic, salt, and onion. Continue boiling the menudo for another three hours, keeping the pot covered. Add crushed oregano, crushed red chili peppers, chopped onions, chopped cilatro, lemon, or any other spices you want. Add hominy when the menudo is almost done.

 Like chili and stew, menudo tastes even better the second or third day since the flavor will become more concentrated each time it's heated.

Photo of Menudo by www.bluewaikiki.com on flickr

American Indian Recipes Using Tripe

These recipes are from the booklet "INDIAN RECIPES", compiled by the United Tribes Technical College (UTTC) Office of Public Information, 1992.


Use tripe (boiled previously) inside out, about half a foot in length. Fill this with dried meat, grease, and fry until it is crisp. then slice into pieces to serve.


Select the straight intestine of a cow. With the two ends open, turn the intestine inside out. Place cubes of fresh beef, salt and pepper seasoning in the tube. Fasten each end of the intestine with string. Boil the sausage for an hour. It is now ready to serve.

Tripe is Popular All Over the World

Some of the Many Tripe Dishes from Around the World:

tripe dish

Andouille – French poached and smoked cold tripe sausage

Callos – Spanish tripe dish cooked with chickpeas, chorizo and paprika.

Chakna – Indian spicy stew of goat tripe and other animal parts

Dobrada – Portuguese tripe dish usually served with white butterbeans and chouriço

Fileki or spek-fileki – Croatian tripe soup.

Flaki – Polish soup, with marjoram

Menudo – Mexican tripe and hominy stew

Pacal or Pacalpörkölt – Hungarian spicy meal made of tripe

Philadelphia Pepper Pot Soup - American (Pennsylvania) tripe soup with peppercorns

Tripoux – French sheep tripe dish 

Tsitsarong bulaklak - Filipino crunchy fried tripe

Yakiniku and Horumonyaki – Japanese chargrilled, bite-sized

Ojree – Pakistani curry made out of finely chopped and tenderized goat tripe

Pepper soup with tripe – Nigerian Hot peppered liquid soup with bite-sized tripe


Information about Tripe Dishes from Answers.com 

Photo of Trippa alla Fiorentina by avlxyz on flickr 

Green tripe hasn’t been bleached, cleaned or processed.

Its color is actually brown, but may have a greenish tint because of the grass the animal ate before being slaughtered.

The animal stomach and partly digested grass contains lactobacillus acidophilus (a good bacteria), Green Tripe also contains phosphorous, calcium, Omega 3 and 6, amino acids, digestive enzymes, and gastric juices. Green tripe might help a dog with stomach problems. 

Some dog owners say green tripe keeps their dog’s coats looking better and keeps them from shedding as much.

You’ll smell an unusual odor when you open a can of tripe because it’s been cooked only long enough to prevent spoiling.

Canned green tripe is more expensive than other canned or dry dog food, but it’s not meant to be your dog’s only food. Use it as a nutritional supplement to make your dog healthier. 

Green Tripe for Dogs - Since dogs are natural hunters, they love green tripe.

Tripett Original Formula - Beef Tripe - 12 x 13 oz
Only $61.98
Updated: 12/27/2015, AngelaJohnson
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Do You Want to Try Tripe?

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Susan on 12/26/2015

I'll pass. I'm sure it's an acquired taste, but for now I'll stick with the more traditional parts of the cow. Interesting article and recipe, though!

candy47 on 12/25/2015

Yes Angela, she sliced it and it looked like pinwheels. She called it brasciole, although the more modern version of brasciole is made with flank steak.

AngelaJohnson on 12/21/2015

candy47 - I haven't seen a recipe like yours, either. After the tripe was cooked rolled up, did your grandmother slice it like a thin loaf of bread?

frankbeswick on 12/21/2015

Candy, your recipe is news to me, I had never heard of this way of cooking tripe, and it seems to be a way in which tripe can be used.

candy47 on 12/21/2015

Being of Italian descent, tripe was practically a food staple. My grandmother would lay it flat then spread ricotta cheese and spinach on it along with herbs, spices and parmesan. Roll it up, tie it with string and let it simmer for hours.

ologsinquito on 01/29/2015

It's not as bad as it sounds, and it tastes a little like squid.

DerdriuMarriner on 10/15/2014

burntchestnut, It's interesting that tripe appears in cuisines worldwide. For me, tripe will always remain a vicarious experience, with no basis in reality.

frankbeswick on 10/15/2014

I tried it once, but I could not swallow it.

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