Abstract Background Guava pomace is an example of the processing waste generated after the manufacturing process from the juice industry that could be a source of bioactives. Thus, the present investigation was carried out in order to evaluate the anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive potential and determinate the main phenolic compounds of a guava pomace extract (GPE). Methods The anti-inflammatory activity was evaluated by carrageenan, dextran, serotonin, histamine-induced paw edema and neutrophils migration in the peritoneal cavity models. Acetic acid-induced abdominal writhing and formalin test were performed to investigate the antinociceptive effects. In addition, the content of total phenolic and of individual phenolic compounds was determined by GC/MS. Results GPE showed anti-inflammatory activity by carrageenan, dextran, serotonin, histamine-induced paw edema and neutrophils migration in the peritoneal cavity models (p < 0.05). GPE also demonstrated antinociceptive activity by acetic acid-induced abdominal writhing and formalin test (p < 0.05). The total phenolic value was 3.40 ± 0.09 mg GAE/g and epicatechin, quercetin, myricetin, isovanilic and gallic acids were identified by GC/MS analysis. Conclusions The presence of bioactive phenolic compounds as well as important effects demonstrated in animal models suggest that guava pomace could be an interesting source of anti-inflammatory and analgesic substances.