22 Nov 2021

The Best Mexican Cuisine You Need to Sample!

Mexico has long been one of the most popular vacation destinations in the world, attracting sunbathers and foodies. If you’re taking a trip to Mexico, whether it’s the capital, Mexico City, or a smaller town, make sure you sample the local cuisine!

The country’s culture is made up of incredibly rich traditions and festivals, and one of the greatest things to experience in Mexico is its food.

Mexican cuisine is world-famous and goes beyond the traditional simple dishes of chain restaurants like Chipotle and Taco Bell. If you have daring taste buds, a love for spicy food, and the courage to try new foods, then check out our list of dishes below!

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Chilaquiles

A bowl with fried tortilla pieces, cheese , tomatoes and cilantro.

Most often eaten at breakfast or brunch, chilaquiles uses tortilla as a key element. Tortillas are sliced into small pieces and fried, then drenched with green or red salsa to soften them slightly.

Fried eggs, pulled chicken, cheese and cream are the main toppings used in this meal. A side of guacamole usually accompanies chilaquiles. Salsa-drenched chips and toppings give it its special taste that makes it worth trying!

Enchiladas

A plate of cheese enchiladas with yellow rice and salad.

Enchiladas originate back to the Aztec times where people living in the Valley of Mexico would eat corn tortillas rolled with small fish inside them. There are many variations of enchiladas throughout South America, and each one is prepared differently.

In Mexico, large tortillas are filled with various ingredients such as meats, cheeses, and vegetables. It is then topped with a chilli sauce and a blanket of cheese before being put into the oven to bake. Then it comes out as a cheesy concoction that’s great with a side of guacamole and sour cream.

Tacos

Folded yellow tortillas with chicken, cilantro, and limes.

Tacos are probably the most well-known Mexican food in the world. Wheat or corn tortillas are filled with a variety of fillings, such as chicken, beef, cheese, or vegetables. They often are garnished with condiments like sour cream, salsa or guacamole.

The tacos you find in Mexico greatly differ from the westernised versions of this popular street food. Local vendors often serve them with a type of meat and top it with coriander and onions.

Mole

Red mole sauce with orange rice and tortilla crisps.

Mole is a rich traditional sauce that is used in many dishes in Mexican cuisine. This sauce is made primarily from chillies and contains other ingredients such as nuts, seeds, black pepper, onions, cinnamon, and chocolate (in some variations).

Mole comes in a variety of spice levels and colours. However, the most popular version of mole is mole poblano. This is a red gravy-like sauce that is served over chicken or meat with a side of rice. You can’t leave Mexico without trying this authentic sauce.

Elote

Yellow corn on the cob with limes.

This street food snack can be found everywhere in Mexico. Elote is the name given to corn on the cob in Mexico. The corn is boiled and either served in a cup or on a stick.

The hot snack is then seasoned with a range of condiments and toppings such as mayonnaise, cheese, sour cream, salt, and chilli just to name a few. This is the way locals like it and you sure will too!

Tamales

Tamales wrapped in yellow corn husks.

Tamales are a traditional Mexican comfort food that has been consumed by the Aztecs and Mayans since pre-Columbian times. They are made of a corn dough called masa and are either filled with a sweet or savoury filling.

Fillings range from chicken and beef to fruits and jams depending on preference. They are normally wrapped in either banana leaves or corn husks and steamed till firm. The result is a mouth-watering corn crust filled with tasty ingredients!

Top Tip: Make sure to remove the wrapping before eating!

Pozole

Red pozole soup with onions, radish, and tortilla chips.

This is another traditional food from pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. During the Aztec and Mayan eras, pozole was consumed on special occasions.

The soup is made from hominy with meat such as pork or chicken which is normally stewed for a couple of hours. Pozole is most commonly served with shredded lettuce, radishes, limes, avocados, and onions.

Pambazo

A fried and red pambazo with cheese, sour cream and lettuce.

This delicious sandwich is very popular in Mexico and is sold by street vendors nationwide. Pambazo is a type of Mexican soft white bread which is also the name of the popular sandwich. A pambazo is typically filled with chorizo and potatoes before being dipped in a red guajillo chilli sauce which gives it its famous red colour.

Once dipped, the sandwich is fried until slightly crispy and then topped with cheese, beans, and lettuce among other toppings. The dipping makes this sandwich a must-try while in Mexico because it really enhances the flavour! 

Chiles en nogada

A green stuffed chili topped with white sauce, red pomegranates, and cilantro.

With the green chilli, red pomegranate, and white sauce, this dish symbolises the Mexican flag and is very popular among Mexicans.

It’s made of poblano chillies filled with picadillo (a mixture of shredded meat, fruits, and spices). The stuffed chilli is then topped with a creamy white sauce made from walnuts and garnished with parsley and pomegranates.

Horchata

A white milky drink with ice.

We can’t finish talking about Mexican cuisine without mentioning some desserts and beverages.

Horchata is a rice-based sweet Mexican beverage. Horchata is created by soaking white rice and cinnamon sticks in water.

Following the removal of the rice and cinnamon, the remaining liquid is flavoured with vanilla, sugar, and ground cinnamon. Horchata is typically made thicker by adding milk and is served chilled.

Tres leches cake

A white sponge cake with heavy cream on top.

This is one of the sweetest desserts you can try in Mexico. The Tres leches cake (three milk cake) is made from three kinds of milk. Those milks are evaporated milk, heavy cream, and condensed milk.

The sponge cake is dipped into those milks and is then decorated with some cinnamon on top. This scrumptious delight cannot be passed up when in Mexico.

Thank You From easyGuide

We hope you found our guide to The Best Mexican Cuisine You Need to Sample useful. Don’t forget you can find tickets to the top attractions, activities, experiences, and tours in Mexico City here.

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