Food Terms from Mexico Glossary

Most of us enjoy some Mexican cuisine to liven up our meals. But do not worry if you frequently confuse your tacos for tortillas or your burritos for bolillos. We are here to explain the terminologies used in Mexican takeout and restaurants.   

The popular enchiladas and chili con carne, which are more Tex-Mex than Mexican, are only a small portion of the real Mexican cuisine. Mexican cuisine is confusing because many Mexican dishes depend on recipes from the Olmec, Aztec, and Mayan civilizations that once inhabited the dynamic country of Mexico. However, you do not need to drive to Mexico since you can have all flavors in Hong Kong at La Vista, Mexican Restaurant & Bar.  

The Principals Used in Mexican Meals  

Corn, a staple dish in Mexico, chilli peppers, and delicious fresh fruit and vegetables like tomatoes, squash, potatoes, spinach, avocados, mangoes, pineapple, guava, bananas, beans, and mushrooms were the key components of Mexican meals back then, as they are now. In the past, Mexicans did not eat any meat or dairy items. It was not until the Spanish conquistadors arrived in the 16th century with their domesticated animals and the invention of cheesemaking that things began to alter.  



A Aguachile  

Shrimp cooks in a sauce that contains chilli peppers, lime juice, salt, coriander, and a slice of onion in the Mexican cuisine, aguachile.   


Mexican meatballs known as albondigas are often comprised of pork and beef. A Spanish cuisine that was brought to Mexico but not native to the country is given Mexican flair by the addition of hot chipotle sauce.   

Arroz (rice) –   

Rice is prepared in a wide variety of ways. Rice with eggs is Arroz en Huevo, whereas yellow rice is Arroz Amarillo, and seafood rice is Arroz a la Tumboda.  


The term “barbecue”‘s origin in Mexico is “barbacoa,” which is typically used to describe fatty, pot-roasted meat that has been slowly cooked with onions and cilantro before being served on warm tortillas and topped with guacamole and salsa.   



Birria is a hot stew that has its roots in the Mexican state of Jalisco. It is typically made with spicy-marinated goat or mutton meat, though beef or chicken can also come in use. The customary accompaniments include corn tortillas, onion, and lime.   


Bolillos are traditional Mexican bread rolls with a soft interior and a crispy exterior that are shorter than a baguette.   


Burritos are a common Mexican and American street food made by enclosing a big wheat flour tortilla around a filling to form a cylinder. filled with rice, vegetables, cheese, and meat.  

Caldo de queso –   

a typical soup with diced potatoes, onions, tomatoes, chilli verde, oregano, and chicken stock that is from northern Mexico. After the soup has cooked, soft, creamy cheese you will add in it   


Since the dawn of time, sweet potatoes have been a traditional meal in Mexico. Modern-day camote carts sell sweet potatoes cooked on a bed of charcoal and eaten with strawberry jam and condensed milk, continuing one of the country’s oldest street food traditions.   

Carne Asada    

Sliced beef that marinates, grills, and cooks with some charring for flavor. The marinade varies, and the cuts utilized can be skirt, flank, or flap steak. Sliced Carne Asada, you can have as a main course or as a filling for burritos, tacos, and other similar dishes.  


A huge piece of pork is braised in lard in a heavy bottomed pot over fire until soft, which can take up to four hours. The result is a Mexican variation on pulled pork. Along with the chillies and garlic cloves, herbs including cumin, oregano, marjoram, thyme, and bay are also in it. After becoming tender, the pork’s outside seares to make it crisp. In addition to guacamole, salsa, and refried beans, the meat can be flaking out and used to fill tamales, tacos, tortillas, and burritos.   



Typically served as an appetiser, raw fish marinated in Mexican lime juice and combined with tomatoes, onions, chillies, and spices.  


Chalupas that make by pressing a layer of masa (corn flour) into an oval-shaped mould. They are a true Mexican speciality. This is afterwards deep-fried to create a corn cup that is crisp and shallow. These crunchy shells are typically designed to resemble a ship’s hull. (Chalupa is the name of a boat, in actuality.) Salsa fills inside in Mexican chalupas before frying. Then, traditional Chalupas have a light topping with any of the following: queso fresco. 

Chilli Relleno  

Ancho, Anaheim, and Poblano chile peppers with their skins removed packs with cheese or minced pork, then deep-fried and coated with a hot red sauce to make chilli relleno.   

Mexican food called chimichangas    

It is essentially a deep-fried burrito that falls under the category of Tex-Mex, a southwestern USA adaption of a Mexican cuisine. It is produced by stuffing a flour tortilla with things like rice, cheese, shredded meat, or veggies then deep-frying the finished product after folding into a rectangle bundle. Moreover, it typically serves with sour cream, salsa, and guacamole   


Heavy-handedly Peppered and Seasoned fresh Sausage   


The name given to corn on the cob, a common street snack that can be grilled, boiled, or both. Elotes are typically served on a stick, and toppings like mayonnaise, butter, salt, chilli powder, and lemon or lime juice can be used.   


Turnover made of pastry and stuffed with spicy meat or fruit and sweets. In Spain, Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Peru, and Chile, empanadas are incredibly popular.   


Red or green chilli sauce is drizzled over corn tortillas that have rolled around a filling, typically meat, cheese, beans, or vegetables.  


A modern Tex-Mex variation on tacos, skirt steak tacos make with fried onions, bell peppers, and skirt steak, and then it is placed on a tortilla. Sour cream, guacamole, salsa, cheese, and/or refried beans are among the condiments that can be added to taste. There are numerous alternative meats, fish, and vegetarian options that can come in use to make fajitas.   


Small tortillas that are suitable for snacks. These rolls around a filling and fried until crisp.  Then it coveres in guacamole and sour cream.  

The Frijoles    

Beans (often pinto, kidney, bayo, or black beans)   

Frijoles refritos    

Pinto beans typically come in use in this meal, a very popular dish. After soaking throughout the night, they are boiled, drained, and mashed into a paste. The paste follows by adding epazote (a wild herb), other ingredients, and heating it with onion and garlic in lard (the ideal cooking medium, though butter or vegetable oil are also suitable substitutes). 


They are created from masa dough and molded into thick circles, which are then baked or fried in a wok-like skillet (referred to as a Comal). They are the equivalent of a pastry in Mexico. After cooking, they include a range of meals and stay open. 


The ancient Aztecs created an avocado-based dip that is today a staple of Mexican cuisine and popular worldwide.  


A food item made from dried corn kernels that are nixtamalized, or treated with an alkali, usually lye or slaked lime. Hominy is frequently ground finely and comes in use to make Masa. 


Drink prepared by combining ground rice, water, juice,and melon seeds.   


This oblong Mexican pizza is quite well-liked in Mexico City. The base comprises of fried masa (corn flour) moulded like the sole of a huarache, a type of traditional Mexican sandal. The base has a topping of a variety of ingredients, including cheese, salsa, onions, potatoes, and minced beef.  


Eggs, and the Huevos Rancheros Breakfast is one of the most well-known egg dishes. It consists of a fried egg on a corn fried tortilla, topped with red chilli sauce, and it serves with guacamole, Mexican rice, and refried beans.  

Leche Quemada – Burnt milk  


a maize product made from ground hominy (nixtamalized corn). It comes in use to prepare many different foods, including maize tortillas, gorditas, tamales, pupusas, and more.   


Tripe, hominy, onions, and spices in a hearty, medium-spicy soup.   


A Central Mexican pork dish that is currently most frequently baked. Cubes of meat (lamb, pork, chicken, or rabbit) are spiced with chilli peppers, herbs, and garlic before being wrapped in the leaves of maguey plants, a native of Mexico that resembles an aloe. This gives the meat a distinctive flavour.  


Mole Poblano, Black Mole, and Mole Verde are three of the most popular rich Mexican sauces. There are about 20 ingredients in mole poblano, including chocolate, mulato peppers, pulverised raisins, almonds, and peanuts. It has a flavour that is agreeable, sweet, and savoury and goes particularly well with chicken. Assorted spices like cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, cumin, pumpkin, and sesame seeds that you will find in black mole along with other sweet, sour, and spicy treats. Pumpkin seeds, green chilli, celery, cilantro, chard, parsley, green tomatoes, jalapenos, and green chillies are some of the ingredients that give Mole Verde its vibrant green hue.   


prepared using bolillos that have their centres cut out, their interiors fill with refried beans, cheese, and peppers, and then baked until the cheese melts.  




A well-known Tex-Mex cuisine that consists of a bowl of corn tortilla chips (baked or fried tortilla pieces) topped with cheese sauce and jalapenos. You can also include additional meats, vegetables, beans, and/or toppings.     


The Yucatan Peninsula is famous for its meal, poc-chuc. This prepares with meat, usually hog, marinated in citrous juice and grilled. In addition to rice, pickled onion, refried beans, and avocado, poc-chuc serve frquently.   


Hominy, onions, and spices are used in this hearty, medium-spicy soup with pork or chicken. also known as posole   

The Quesadilla    

The equivalent of the grilled cheese sandwich in Mexico. As the cheese melts, additional ingredients, such as onions, peppers, beans, or shredded meat, you can put a soft tortilla in the pan. The tortilla then cuts into a half-moon shape and placed on a plate.   


referring to the several native cheese kinds produced in Mexico. The most fundamental is queso fresco, a white, pliable cheese.  


a sauce-meaning Spanish term. It has come to linkage with a chopped fresh and raw tomato, onion, and chilli mixture that come in usage as a dip or condiment in the context of Mexican food.   


a crisp, fried tortilla with a filling inside. There are countless possible combinations, including those using beef, pig, poultry, vegetables, seafood, beans, avocado, tomatoes, onion, and lettuce. typically consumed with guacamole   


A traditional portable snack that was consumed by the Aztecs and the Mayans and is still popular in Mexico today. A corn-based dough is stuffed with your choice of filling—meat, cheese, fruit, or vegetable—and then wrapped in a corn husk or banana leaf before being steam-cooked. Before eating, the wrap is thrown away.  


A thin, unleavened flatbread that is a popular snack in Mexico. It prepares with finely ground maize  


Fresh corn tortilla that is fried and frequently has toppings of beans, meat, tomatoes, lettuce, and salsa.  


Most of us like adding some Mexican food to our meals to spice things up. However, as you have read the information, now it will be easy for you to avoid routinely mistaking your tacos for tortillas or your burritos for bolillos. Now visit any Mexican eatery and order confidently, if you are in Hong Kong then you must reach out to La Vista, Mexican Restaurant & Bar. You will lick your fingers after eating the best and most authentic Mexican food here.