Mexico is located in the Southern portion of North America. It is a country with an extremely rich culture. With lavish traditions, festivals, and diverse landscapes, Mexico is undoubtedly a place of wonders. Be it the rugged mountains, deserts, lush jungles, or tropical forests, Mexico has a diverse topography. However, it is also known for the Best Mexican Food which is not only vibrant and delicious but also appealing to the eye.
Mexican cuisine began about 9000 years ago with the formation of many agricultural communities. They domesticated maize, processed corn, and established their foodways and now Mexico is world-famous for its food.
What are the 10 Best Mexican Foods to try?
While there is a long list of delicious Mexican dishes, some of them are the most popular in the world that you should not miss out in any case:
This is a traditional breakfast dish of Mexico. It is presented as lightly fried corn tortillas cut into parts and garnished with salsa that is either green or red (spicier). Fried eggs are usually added at the end. The plate is served by sprinkling queso fresco (fresh cheese) with cream and appears very yummy.
A very popular sandwich from Puebla, it is made of deep-fried breaded meat. In the Torta family, sandwiches topped with sesame seeds are made like a bread roll that’s filled with milanesa. This is a uniquely made, egg-rich roll with a bit of a sweet taste. While filling it, avocado and meat (beef, ham, or chicken) are usually added. Similarly, white cheese-like queso Oaxaca is also mixed in it. Onions, a little red chili sauce, and sliced jalapenos are added later. Lettuce, tomato, and a refried bean spread are also used in serving the cemita. A small nap may be needed after having cemita as it is not easily digestible.
Tlayuda also spelled as clayuda sometimes is an item of traditional Oaxacan cuisine. It is a handmade dish, consisting of a small, crunchy, partially fried or toasted tortilla that can be eaten open-faced covered with a spread of refried beans, beef or shredded chicken, lettuce or cabbage, avocado, Oaxaca cheese, and a smidge of salsa.
Being preferred much in the local cuisine; it can be easily found in Oaxaca City. Its cuisine is a major contributor to the booming tourism industry of the region.
It is a Mexican white bread, drier and less crispy than the bolillo roll dipped in guajillo pepper sauce. It is then filled with papas con chorizo. This particular bread is made of flour and is lighter than the similar bolillo which allows it to retain its shape when soaked in sauce.
On the top and bottom of the bread, pambazo is fried. It is garnished with crema, queso fresco (fresh cheese), and shredded lettuce and appears very pleasant and tempting.
Popular Mexican street food in which bags of nacho cheese Doritos are cut lengthwise and are topped with cueritos. Besides, the topping also includes squares of cucumber, jícama, carrots, lime juice, a drizzle of sweet chamoy sauce, chili powder, salt, gummy candies, and Japanese peanuts.
These mobile snacks are not only appealing in look but also very delicious. They are most common in the United States and are often sold by street vendors.
One of Mexico’s most famous recipes, Mole is available in varying colors like yellow, green, and many others. Not only this, but it is also multi-flavored with lots of combinations of taste including spicy, sweet, bitter, and chocolatey. In contemporary Mexico, the term is used for many sauces including black, red/Colorado, almendrado, de olla, guacamole, and others.
The Mole may take up to two weeks for its preparation with a total of almost 32 ingredients which include chocolate discs, raisins, pumpkin, sesame seed, almonds, peanuts, and animal crackers. It is a perfect dish for celebrations and festivities.
It is a very common Mexican dish in America, a flour tortilla filled with protein (usually pork, steak, or chicken) rice, beans, and other fillings like lettuce and salsa, wrapped perfectly to be eaten with ease.
The tortilla is lightly grilled or steamed with the purpose of softening it and making it adherent for wrapping.
8. Chiles en nogada
Puebla is one of Mexico’s culinary gems for its regional dishes and a variety of food cuisines. Chiles en nogada is its famous dish stuffed with picadillo with a walnut-based cream sauce on the top named nogada, and pomegranate seeds, typically served at room temperature.
The green chili, white sauce and red pomegranate seeds garnished on it represent the Mexican flag making it homage to the country’s independence.
Enchiladasused as a Mexican breakfast food made by wrapping small fish with corn tortillas and filled with cheese, meat, seafood, vegetables, and beans. After stuffing tortillas this way, chili sauce is then added to them serving as a perfect breakfast item.
This fritter is a fried-dough light pastry that is also used to make éclairs and beignets. It is pushed into ridged shapes before frying.
Being sold by all types of food merchants, it can be eaten as a breakfast dish or simply as a mini treat. Churros are found as a traditional food in Spain and Portugal, from where they originated.
Most Popular Mexican Dishes
If you live in the UK, you must have tried tacos or at least heard of them as they are a very common dish now. The kits are also available that help you in making quick tacos by adding ingredients of your choice and getting a tasty meal in no time.
Though the tacos can be made in a variety of ways, the main technique usually involves adding portions of hot chicken or beef from a spit and then piling it up into a corn tortilla which is later folded.
Flavors with guacamole, chili sauce, and cilantro (coriander) are added in the end which ultimately brings out a yummy food with varying servings.
Even onions and pineapple are also used for serving tacos. These modified versions of tacos appear to be very tempting and people buy them from street stalls as well.
The word nacho is similar to a sandwich; it covers a range of foods found in many regions. For every meal of the day, the nachos have varying categories.
There are breakfast nachos, vegan nachos, fried chicken nachos, pizza nachos, nacho salad, poutine nachos, ballpark, and high school gym nachos.
Nacho is covered with beans, cheese, meat, and other delicious ingredients and appears as a very colorful dish. This amazing invention spread quickly throughout the Southwest and is still celebrated as International Nacho Day every October in the hometown.
The Mexican Gyro, a mash-up sandwich of the most mighty and mouthwatering kind is a serving of meat grilled on a rotisserie. It is served on a flatbread with vegetables and condiments. Besides Gyro, other Mexican-style food being served is grilled chicken, and grilled mutton in the form of beef or mutton platters with rice, salad, and pita bread.
The Mexican Gyro can be found in the middle of a small listing of sandwiches for six bucks.
Served up warm, pillowy soft, and slightly sweet, it arrives like a giant food smile packed with top-notch green chile pork – tender and with a nice, subdued burn — tomatillo, killer-fresh corn salsa, lime, and a side of crema (cream).
Frango is a flavored chicken gyro. The wrap comes with onions and tomatoes. To give it a Mexican touch which is based on spicy items containing an array of both dried and fresh chilies, green peppers are added with sauces poured over it. With modifications to the basic cuisine like fries and burgers, the menu gets more lavishing and tempting to the eye.
Mexican Food in Different Parts of the World
San Diego is California’s second-largest city known for its amazing destinations that promise a remarkable vacation experience.
While searching for some Mexican Food in San Diego, one gets delighted to know that San Diego has the best food and drinks in Mexican cuisine.
To look for the best food points, it is essential to know about the following Restaurants in San Diego that are offering delicious Mexican Food:
PuestoKnown for it is cozy; the open-air environment, it is acclaimed nationally for its Mexico City-style tacos with crispy melted cheese and scratch salsas.
El IndioFounded in 1940, it is a casual restaurant for the family-run that has maintained its mark to date to provide delicious and consistently good Mexican food. Their menu includes lots of classic Mexican dishes such as enchiladas, tamales, nachos, beans, rice and much more. The famous ones are the carne asada fries with salsa on the side.
Las Curato MilpasThis has rolled tacos in sour cream and cheese, along with the rice and beans, chorizo served with tortillas made of flour, the best Mexican food items to be found there.
El ComalIt is in North Park famous for its thick, homemade corn tortillas, enchiladas, red or green pozole, and a large variety of other regional Mexican dishes
Everything is made fresh daily at home and this amazing spot has been a San Diego staple for decades with a huge number of visitors daily.
Besides these famous spots, San Diego has various other restaurants as well that are known for their delightful, yummy, and authentic Mexican Food. Hence, it is not wrong to say that San Diego is the best place to visit if you want to enjoy Mexican food in its purest form containing almost all kinds of popular dishes.
According to U.S. News and World Report, Austin, Texas is the best place to live. With its beautiful locations and extremely pleasant weather, Austin is also acknowledged for its mind-blowing Mexican food.
Talking about food, the meals in Austin are representatives of a range of communities that keep it a vibrant cultural destination for food lovers. The city features a variety of cuisines that make it one of the most visited places in the world.
Best Food Spots
Be it the Casa Maria known for its tacos like the al pastor tacos or the Fonda San Miguel famous for its specialty cocktails, Austin has varied menu items on Mexican dishes.
Not only is this, La Condesa – a famous spot for food like el cúbico also found in Austin which is immensely loved by people.
The margarita bars of Austin are well known for Mexican-style servings that are bound to attract lots of visitors coming to the restaurants.
It is the most populous and the second-most overly populated city in the United States. It was a part of Mexico until 1848. L.A. is known for a range of cheap and single-culture cuisines. It is known for the Memphis-style ribs and Ethiopian beef tartare. The Thai garlicky pork salad Nam sod is loved by many. There is a huge shift in food culture in Los Angeles.
In many restaurants, cafés and food trucks around the city, cooks keep trying something new that shows its liveliness and make it a lavish place to be visited. Even though poverty, educational inequity, and unavailability of jobs are serious issues; still there are multiethnic food offerings that are cherished by people to have some stress-free time.
Food is Culture
Just as in music, art, and fashion, the food traditions of people make it a subject of deep interest. Food is culture. And the business revolves around this culture.
Over time, modern Mexican restaurants are opening in the city, but some great traditional Mexican spots are still found there.
The combination of new and old things all together creates an atmosphere that makes it the perfect LA.
Some of the places in LA that serve the best Mexican food are as under:
Azule is one of the latest restaurants in LA. It has got a highly creative menu like roasted cauliflower al pastor, a taco made of fried egg and cheese in the breakfast, and pleasant-to-taste barbacoa.
Madre’s traditional recipes are still admired and have been passed down from generation to generation. Memelas is made from rich moles, tlayudas and goat barbacoa, served with thickly made tortillas. Likewise, to maintain the menu’s purity, chiles, cheese, and spices from Oaxaca are added. It also has an extensive bar serving hundreds of mezcals and tequilas.
The closer you get to the ocean; it gets hard to find authentic Mexican food. Ortego 120 at South Bay which is an Oaxaca- and Mexico City-inspired eatery has been open for a long time. Also, the Day of the Dead theme is present everywhere. Colorful string lights, crosses, and skeletons are decorated on the walls and the food is deliciously funky with lots of amazing ingredients. The mac & cheese includes Oaxacan queso and other items with salsa. Nachos made with truffles and served with avocado puree are also a specialty of this place.
Mexican old list is incomplete without considering LA’s first street. The shredded taquitos that are fried and poured in a tangy green avocado-garlic-chile sauce are served here.
Maria Garcia is the owner of El Parian restaurant which has struggled for many years in Pico-Union. The main food item of this place is birria which contains roasted goat with an intense flavor that makes it crusty. Similarly, a stylish bowl of goat consomé along with a bottle of tangy and vinegar-rich sauce is provided at each order to give it a classy touch.
Traditional Mexican Cuisine
Mexican food comprises some of the most popular and loved dishes in the world. With many colors and flavors, Mexican cuisine appears very rich and depicts amazing food which is not only delicious but also tempting and appealing to the eye. As there is much diversity in the regions due to climate, ethnic differences, geography, and indigenous inhabitants, so Mexican cuisine varies from place to place.
Based on regional differences and cultural diversities, Mexican cuisine is divided into many regional categories which not only differ by location and climate but also based on food menus and different ways of serving it.
- North of Mexico – known for its meat dishes especially beef and wheat in the form of flour tortillas
- Oaxaca region – known for its savory tamales, tortillas, and celebratory moles
- Yucatan – tropical fruits feature heavily in the cuisine
- Mountainous regions of the west – known for birria (goat/beef/mutton and tomato-based sauce)
- Pacific Coast & Baja California Peninsula – seafood dominates the cuisine
Typical Dishes of Mexico
The typical dishes of Mexico include:
- tacos al pastor
Famous Drinks of Mexico
Mexican cuisine has the best drinks to offer which include tepache, pulque which is made from the maguey plant, and tuba (juice obtained from the coconut tree).
Tequila is also served to make it an essential ingredient used in margaritas, with many juices poured into salt-rimmed glasses.
Mexican Food Culture
The Mexican food culture is distinctive in lots of ways and comprises unique elements. For over a thousand years, corn has remained the basis of the Mexican diet. Besides, it can be found in almost every meal emphasizing its importance in Mexican cuisine. Corn can be utilized in a variety of forms like in the making of Pozole.
Popular Fruits and Vegetables
Popular fruits and vegetables are tomatoes, sweet potato, avocado, pineapple, and mango. Also, apples, oranges, bananas, strawberries, pomegranates, and watermelons are widely used.
Mexicans have been using tomatoes in cooking for a long time even before the arrival of Columbus. They are found in almost every dish with onion, cilantro, and lime.
Hence, tomatoes are used in all kinds of foods, be it a mole or various soups. In salsas and hot sauces, they are used in abundance. Similarly, Onions, carrots, bell peppers of all colors, mushrooms, cucumber, cabbage, and lettuce are common. Sweet potatoes and regular potatoes are widely used in many of Mexican dishes with different cooking styles.
The variety of chilies includes jalapeño, along with the poblano, serrano, and chipotle that are used widely in Mexican food. Likewise, Chilies give Mexican cooking a unique flavor which is intensified with the addition of herbs, such as cilantro, and spices like cumin and cloves that not only improve the taste but also the appearance.
Rich Mexican Culture
Although Mexican cuisine is a blend of many cultures, most Mexicans still prefer more authentic foods having corn, spices, and beans in them.
Bread and pastries are mostly used as a replacement of heavy foods but the tortilla which is usually made at home is the basis of the typical meal and is considered a regular part of the meal. Hence, corn and tortillas made of flour are eaten most commonly.
Some things are used in a negligible amount; lemons are very rare and almost non-existent in food items. Similarly, Basil and spinach are common but kale and asparagus are not found.
The Mexican culture has undergone a huge transformation over time and it varies in moving from one region to the other. Most of the population is found in cities; however, small rural communities are also present which contributes to defining the country’s vibrant community as a whole. Hence, Mexico is considered to be amongst the most overly populated countries in the world.
Languages of Mexico
The majority of Mexicans speak Spanish which comprises of 92.7 percent the population. Many regional languages are also spoken like Mayan, Nahuatl, and others.
Religions of Mexico
Mexican culture is enriched with family norms and religious values.
Around 82 percent of Mexicans are Catholic although many have adopted the faiths of pre-Hispanic times. Also, the Christian communities vary and may include Mormons, Methodists, Baptists, Anglicans, and many other believers. Besides, there are also minorities comprising of Muslims, Buddhists, and many other religions. Lots of religious practices are performed by people belonging to a different sets of beliefs.
Values of the Mexican People
Family is prioritized and valued very much in Mexican society. Mexicans care about the rights of family members including cousins and even close acquaintances. Also, they organize parties at home and their hospitality is well-known. Families are usually extensive and elders are treated with immense respect.
The art of Mexico is phenomenal and includes clay pottery, embroidery on garments, woolen shawls having interesting patterns, baskets with unique and colorful designs, and rugs. Moreover, these items are associated with Mexican folk art. They specialize in textile design. Further, pottery-making and basket-weaving are done by old, traditional methodologies.
Folk music is played with guitars, violins, basses, and trumpets. Therefore, La Cucaracha, the Mariachi staple is a famous song that describes the cockroach that cannot walk. Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera are Mexico’s most popular artists whose paintings depict vibrant colors of the Mexican lifestyle.
The clothing for women includes a sleeveless tunic-like dress called a huipil which is made with a traditional touch representing the old Mexican culture. Now, with much advancement, Mexican women´s clothing, therefore, includes lots of embroideries, often bearing images and patterns that have deep symbolism and creativity.
Sarape is the traditional cloth for men’s wear which is like a large-sized blanket. Not only this but also Boots are worn as a regular part of the wardrobe. Mariachi musicians wear charro suits like the original Mexican cowboys.
Mexicans Love Food
Mexican cuisine is all about colors and flavors. Authentic Mexican food is fresh and simple and people usually prefer authentic food that is made at home from native sources. One of the main reasons to love Mexican food is the use of healthy items that are helpful to provide an almost complete diet. Talking about food, it is essential to mention that Mole is the national Food of Mexico. The Food is not only easy to cook but also very adaptable and appetizing.
Hence, this whole article elaborates on the cultural diversity in Mexico with a special emphasis on food which varies in all dimensions, be it the color, flavor or serving methods. Mexico is a multi-cultural country. It is loved by foodies all around the world.
It’s All About Mexico!
Mexico has about 34 UNESCO sites that aim to bring the world closer. Furthermore, the list includes the historic centers of towns like Guanajuato, Mexico City, and Puebla, as well as ancient ruins along with many more such fascinating destinations. The first printing press in North America was used in Mexico City (1539) at the House of the First Printing Press in America before which it was in the United States. Hence, it’s not wrong to say that Mexico is a country of beauty and wonders!