Mexican street food is famous for a reason, and here are the best ones to tickle your taste buds.
If you are a foodie, there is no doubt that Mexican street food dishes will blow you away. Mexican food is well known for being fresh, full of flavour, and one of the best cuisines in Latin America, so if you can get your hands on some of these delicious Mexican street food items, you absolutely must.
From the famous Mexican tacos to spicy local specialities, there are plenty of quick and easy snacks and meals that locals and visitors love to indulge in several times per week.
You could say that Mexican street food is a prime part of the culture, and eating your way around the country, is thoroughly recommended, especially if you taste these delicious street foods. So, take note of these ten Mexican street foods you need to try.
10. Cemita – the Puebla sandwich
The Cemita is similar to the torta; instead, it is a sandwich native to the region of Puebla. To create this local speciality, unique Mexican cemita buns covered in sesame seeds are used as the central part.
At the same time, the inside is filled with avocado, meat, white cheese, onions, local papalo herbs and chipotle adobado.
9. Chalupa – a boat-shaped snack
A chalupa is a canoe, which is where the name came from since they are the perfect oval shaped to hold a host of delicious hearty ingredients.
The difference between a taco and a chalupa is mainly the shape, although the chalupa is fried before it is served, while the taco is not. This is a must-try Mexican street food which is common in south-central Mexico.
8. Elotes – Mexican corn on the cob
One of the most common Mexican street foods is elotes, corn on the cob, which can be spotted on every street corner.
These delicious snacks are cooked with Mexican spices and topped with a local cheese called Cotija cheese, a Hispanic-style cheese from Mexico that gives the snack a truly authentic taste.
7. Tortas – the Mexican sandwich
A Mexican torta is basically a Mexican sandwich, but nothing is basic about this Mexican dish.
This filling snack is a delicious street food item, which features soft bread rolls filled with lettuce, meat, salsa, avocado and beans, of course, so you might say this is not your typical sandwich, but it is one you need to try when in Mexico.
6. Tostadas – the famous toasted tortilla
Tostadas are commonly confused with tacos but are instead made of crispy corn tortillas, which are topped with various ingredients.
The street food snack, native to Oaxaca, is one of the most common items you will find around the country and is topped with fresh salsas, herbs, sour cream and guacamole.
5. Quesadillas – a well-known Mexican street food
One of the most famous Mexican street foods we have all heard of is, of course, the quesadilla, which can be prepared with various ingredients and can be found everywhere.
It is essentially a corn tortilla folded in half and then fried on both sides until the cheese melts and the outside is golden.
4. Tamales – a distinct Mexican food item
Tamales are one of the leading Mexican street foods you need to try, and the best thing is they can be found everywhere.
They are distinct since they are made of a masa corn dough and then steamed in a banana leaf. They can be filled with meats, cheese, vegetables, and hot chilli peppers, and the wrapping can be discarded or used as a plate but is not to be eaten.
3. Sopes – also known as Picadita
Sopes are made up using a masa dough base, flattened and much thicker than your average tortilla. They are generally topped with delicious local ingredients such as vegetables, meat, refried beans, green salsa, lettuce and onions, and a squeeze of lime to give it a burst of flavour.
2. Gorditas – the Mexican arepa
The Mexican Gordita is similar to the arepa of Venezuela or Colombia and features a crispy corn tortilla stuffed with a variety of cheese, meat and other typical fillings.
The name Gordita essentially means chubby, and even though the tortilla is small, it is packed and incredibly filling.
1. Tacos – the most famous Mexican street food
You have not tried an authentic taco until you have had a Mexican street taco, one of Mexico’s most famous street foods.
The filling for tacos varies but they generally consist of a wheat flour tortilla filled with salad, beef, pork, chicken, seafood, and refried beans and are always topped with fresh salsa, fresh guacamole, a spicy sauce, a squeeze of fresh lime juice, and sour cream.
There are all sorts of authentic Mexican you should try. From Al Pastor to Baja, there is something for everyone.
For more, check out our article on the best cities for street food.
Pambazo: This snack features white bread soaked in pepper sauce and filled with lettuce, potatoes and chorizo sausage.
Empanada: This famous Latin American street food item can also be found in Mexico and is commonly filled with ground beef, cheese, chicken or pumpkin.
Tlayudas: This Oaxacan street food dish is made of a flour tortilla fried and topped with refried beans, lettuce, cabbage, avocado, fresh salsa, Oaxaca cheese and meat.
Mexican Churros: This sweet and tasty treat is typical Mexican street food, which consists of fried dough coated in sugar and served with a chocolate dipping sauce.
Danger dogs: This is a unique variety of hot dog that originated in Mexico City in the 1950s.
Salbutes: This is a deep-friend tortilla dish that has Mayan influences. These tortillas have a variety of ingredients but are traditionally topped with chicken or turkey, sliced avocado, lettuce, tomato, and pickled red onion.
FAQs about Mexican street food
Is Mexican street food safe?
While it is not safe to drink ice-based drinks in Mexico, street food is safe since it is a big part of the culture and many vendors take great pride in their speciality. Always look out for places with many customers.
What’s the most popular Mexican street food dish?
Tacos are the most famous Mexican street food dish, and they can be tailored to your liking, making them highly versatile.
What’s the most common ingredient in Mexican street food?
Many street foods in Mexico are corn-based and feature similar elements such as avocado, chilis, lime and refried beans.
So, if this didn’t make your mouth water, we don’t know what will. So, add these epic Mexican street foods to your list of things you need to try. You won’t regret it!