Forget Chipotle, Here Are 20 Mexican Dishes You Gotta Try

Forget Chipotle, Here Are 20 Mexican Dishes You Gotta Try

Mexican cuisine is so much more than the Chipotle burritos and bowls you've come to know and love. Today, let's explore a bit outside of your comfort zone so that we can introduce you to all the delicious dishes that Mexico has to offer. Here are 20 amazing, unique, and tasty Mexican dishes you have to try.

1. Tostadas

Think taco but with a crispy, flat, fried tortilla base that carries a whole mountain of goodies waiting to be devoured. We're talking refried beans, savory shredded meats, cheese, lettuce, salsa, and so much more! You'll fall in love with both the texture and taste with every bite.

Jarritos-Mexican-Soda-Idp6Ct9Jkmk-Unsplash (2)Photo by Jarritos Mexican Soda on Unsplash

2. Tacos al Pastor

Listen, when we're talking about Mexican cuisine, tacos are a must. But don't think about Taco Bell or taco kits from the grocery store, you need to try the real deal. Tacos al Pastor are a must-try classic street food that consists of marinated pork, pineapple, onions, and cilantro. When it's all served on a warm tortilla, the sweetness from the pineapple combined with the saltiness of the meat will blow your mind.

TacosYezmin on Pixabay

3. Chiles en Nogada

A more traditional Mexican dish that you may never heard of or tried before is Chiles en Nogada. While its beautiful presentation might initially make you believe it's a dessert (kind of looks like one, no?), it's actually a savory dish that features poblano peppers stuffed with picadillo, topped with a walnut cream sauce, and sprinkled with pomegranate seeds. 

1024Px-Chiles En Nogada Estilo Orizaba 01Isaacvp on Wikimedia Commons

4. Tamales

If mac and cheese is a popular comfort food for Americans, then you can think of tamales as the same thing for Mexicans. This dish takes corn dough, fills it with meats, cheeses, and vegetables, then wraps it up in corn husks before steaming it. It's a heartwarming dish that'll cheer you up the moment you take a bite.

Tai-S-Captures-H7G7Lkn9Hso-UnsplashPhoto by Tai's Captures on Unsplash


5. Mole Poblano

Rather than a dish, Mole Poblano is a sauce - one that you absolutely must try if you want to say you've had Mexican cuisine! This rich, dark sauce has a surprising ingredient to it: chocolate! Made from a smoothly blended mix of chilies, chocolate, nuts, and spices, it's a popular sauce served over numerous dishes. It might sound strange at first, but you'll be amazed by how well the combination of sweet, rich, and savory flavours come together.

1024Px-Mole Poblano I.e The City Of Puebla's Molejay galvin on Wikimedia Commons

6. Pozole

Heartwarming, comforting, and flavourful, you will never be disappointed with a soup like Pozole. Bland is the last thing you'll think of when you taste this dish; it's full of hearty ingredients and spices that make every spoonful taste so delicious. You'll be in such a rush to take another bite your bowl will be empty in no time!

1024Px-Pozole (1)Meutia Chaerani / Indradi Soemardjan

7. Horchata

Mexican cuisine features plenty of unique and refreshing drinks too. One of the most popular and well-known drinks out there is horchata, a cool and creamy drink made from rice, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon. It has just the right amount of sweetness to it, making it the ideal drink to have when you're enjoying a spicy Mexican dish alongside it.

1024Px-Horchata (8508343768)Nacho Pintos from Barcelona on Wikimedia Commons

8. Agua de Jamaica

Not only is this vibrant red drink fun and pretty to look at, it tastes just as good as it looks! Agua de Jamaica is exactly what you want on a hot summer day; it's tangy, refreshing, and so so hydrating. Made from hibiscus flowers, sugar, and water, you'll be shocked by how such simple ingredients could create something so delicious.

Hibiscus Rose Hip And Tropical Fruit TisaneKanko* from Nagasaki, Japan on Wikimedia Commons

9. Churros

While Churros might not have Mexican origins, this deliciously fried dessert is incredibly popular in the country, marking it as a favourite. And who wouldn't love fried dough sticks rolled in cinnamon sugar? When they're served warm and fresh, each bite tastes like heaven; crispy on the outside, but soft on the inside.

Foodie-Flavours-D8R6Skoyhuu-Unsplash (2)Photo by Foodie Flavours on Unsplash

10. Flan

If you love creamy and custardy desserts, you're going to absolutely love Mexican flan. That's because that's exactly what it is - a creamy, caramel custard! It's every bit as smooth as a dessert can possibly be, with a decadent layer of soft caramel that brings the right amount of sweetness to satisfy your cravings. 

1024Px-Homemade FlanCary Bass on Wikimedia Commons


11. Tres Leches Cake

We're not done with the sweet dishes yet! Tres Leches Cake is everything you want from the most delicious, moist cake. Mexico's done it right! This cake is soaked in three different types of milk: evaporated milk, condensed milk, and heavy cream. Talk about creamy! Not to mention, when it's topped off with some extra whipped cream (just for fun), you've got an incredibly delicious sweet treat waiting to be demolished.

1024Px-Tres Leches Cake (4)Hungry Dudes on Wikimedia Commons

12. Enchiladas

Let's bring it back to something more savory and classic. Enchiladas are a favourite in Mexico, thanks to their unbelievable taste and comforting nature. Just imagine this: tortillas filled with meat, cheese, beans, or veggies, all loaded in a savory sauce and baked until the cheese is nice and gooey. If the description sounds that good, you can only imagine how good it actually tastes.

Alexandra-Golovac-Xsfx3Aqldko-UnsplashPhoto by Alexandra Golovac on Unsplash

13. Quesadillas

Sometimes, keeping things simple is the way to go! If we're talking tasty but quick and easy to make, nothing tops that more than a quesadilla. If you want to keep things really simple, all you need are tortillas and some cheese! But if you want to get fancy, load it up with your favourite ingredients like different meats, veggies, and beans.

Gaby-Aziz-4Kn83L4Gc6Q-UnsplashPhoto by Gaby Aziz on Unsplash

14. Sopes

Similar to tostadas in a way, the main difference between those and sopes are the base. Sopes are made using thick and round cornmeal cakes, but they're topped with all the same goodies that make these dishes so delicious. From beans, to meats, lettuce, cheese, and salsa, the combination of ingredients are endless!

1024Px-Mexican SopesIvan.Romero on Wikimedia Commons

15. Cochinita Pibil

For something a bit different and more traditional, Cochinita Pibil is a beloved Yucatecan dish you absolutely must give a try. It's a slow-roasted pork dish that's marinated in the most delicious combination of ingredients. Cooked until it's melt-in-your-mouth tender, this flavourful and juicy meat is best served in a taco or simply with a bowl of rice.

1024Px-Authentic Cochinita PibilJennifer Woodard Maderazo on Wikimedia Commons

16. Chilaquiles

Whether it's breakfast, lunch, dinner, or dessert time, Mexican cuisine has got something delicious for you to enjoy at all times of the day. In the morning, there's nothing more special and perfect for starting your day off right than a hearty bowl of chilaquiles. Fried corn tortillas topped with salsa, pulled chicken, cheese, crema, and cilantro sounds pretty good, right?

Mary-West-1J8H-Qilbaw-UnsplashPhoto by Mary West on Unsplash


17. Michelada

If you're more on the adventurous side when it comes to ordering drinks, the Michelada will definitely interest you. It's tangy, spicy, but oddly refreshing, making it a unique but satisfying drink for you to try. Made with beer, lime, spices, peppers, and different sauces, it just goes to show you how a mishmash of ingredients can sometimes come together to make something wonderful.

1024Px-Michelada At Mitote Food Park - April 2023 - Sarah StierchMissvain on Wikimedia Commons

18. Elote

We can't forget about this delicious street food! Elote is Mexican street corn, and no, it's not your typical corn on the cob. It's leveled up to the max, thanks to its addition of mayo, cotija cheese, chili powder, and lime. Each bite will surprise you with a burst of flavour that never stops until you're finished the whole darn thing.

Aleisha-Kalina-Wdg4-Cdsq3Y-Unsplash (1)Photo by Aleisha Kalina on Unsplash

19. Buñuelos

Although this sweet treat might not originate from Mexico, they're still an incredibly popular holiday dessert in the country that's beloved by all. Buñuelos are crispy, flattened, fried treats that are sprinkled with cinnamon sugar or syrup, turning them into sweet delights. They've got an amazing crunchy texture that perfectly complements its sugary taste.

1024Px-Bunuelos 3 Img 5460Tomascastelazo on Wikimedia Commons

20. Arroz con Leche

We all know how comforting and delicious rice pudding can be, and it's nice knowing that it's a universal treat that everyone can enjoy. In Mexico, they call it Arroz con Leche. Flavoured with cinammon and vanilla, it's a sweet treat that you're already familiar with.

Arroz Con LecheEli123seo on Wikimedia Commons