GASTRONOMY OF TLAXCALA
Typical Food of TLAXCALA
The cuisine of Tlaxcala is full of varied flavors. For that reason, trying the different dishes of this region is pampering your palate with delicious recipes. However, it is also a reunion with the history of the gastronomy of Tlaxcala, which honors its ancestors and dates back to pre-Hispanic times.
Over time, the traditional dishes of Tlaxcala have preserved their essence, thus being an attraction of the state and all of Mexico. Now, in the area you will find both atoles for the cold season and drinks to share in your celebrations. In the same way, in the festivities of the region some sweets and special dishes that have maguey are also made.
The main typical dishes of Tlaxcala, a state located in eastern Mexico, are varied and each one is very particular. In its diverse cuisine, chili peppers predominate as ingredients. Despite the fact that Tlaxcalan food comes, for the most part, from the past, even in 2020 some of the original preparation methods are preserved.
In different parts of Mexico, the original dishes of Tlaxcala and their drinks have spread, bringing their own flavors to various places and captivating those who make tourism in the state.
Many of the preparations of this locality have been adopted by other Mexican towns. Likewise, its exotic dishes, its sweets, and even its moles, accompany the special Tlaxcalan dates and the daily life of the inhabitants of the place.
There is no doubt that the foods of this town have high levels of vitamins for the human body and, in some cases, are used for medicinal purposes. In addition, in its gastronomy, dishes that have been declared Intangible Heritage stand out. They are delicacies that you cannot miss.
If you are going to travel to Tlaxcala, you cannot stop trying its dishes and sweets, which, moreover, you will not find anywhere else. Its touches are so special and particular to the state that even other regions have adopted some preparations. Due to this, among your plans you must be open to delight yourself and surprise yourself with the variety of flavors that Tlaxcalan gastronomy has for you.
The tlaxcales, also known as tortillas, are part of the traditional dishes of the state and have a place in the pre-Hispanic gastronomy of Tlaxcala. Its main ingredient is hard corn, which must be ground in a metate and remove the flour from there to make the tlaxcales.
In the food recipes of Tlaxcala it is indicated that with the flour obtained, plus water, ground piloncillo, milk and egg, it is necessary to form a homogeneous mass to make this preparation. Then, you must give it a small circular or triangular shape and cook it on a griddle or comal until the bread is golden. Once ready, you can eat them hot or cold, as you prefer.
The tlaxcales are inevitable in the special foods of the region and are part of the tradition of the Day of the Dead in that state and other places in Mexico. Although they were taken to Puebla and Hidalgo, they have variations there. However, the same essence is preserved in its flavor.
Any snack or drink may be missing from your party food list in Tlaxcala, but you should never leave out the delicious barbacoa. Tlaxcalan cuisine has the particularity of being very simple, so much so that it is very easy to prepare its typical dishes at home. Despite this, it stands out as one of the ideal preparations for lunch that is consumed throughout the year.
For the preparation of this typical food of the state, you need lamb, tree chili, guajillo chili and powder. Likewise, tomatoes, garlic, cloves and thyme. You can not miss marjoram, cinnamon, pepper and salt. With the exception of the lamb, the rest of the ingredients must be roasted and ground together so that you achieve a sauce. Later, with this sauce you must bathe the meat, wrap it in paper for mixiote and bake for 3 hours in a steamer with little water.
But if you are looking for one that is already made and ready to taste, you can find it in several places where they prepare barbacoas that will make you declare your eternal love for the cuisine of this region.
This is an exotic and unconventional meal within the regional gastronomy. What makes it exotic, expensive and luxurious is its main ingredient: the maguey worm, also known as chinicuil. It is an insect that lives in the maguey pulquero and has high levels of protein for the body.
The preparation of this typical dish with insects is not complicated at all. First of all, you must put the maguey worms on a griddle or griddle and let them roast. To the extent that they are toasting, they will stretch and inflate. When you notice that they turn golden, remove them from the kitchen and choose what you are going to eat them with or in what way.
Chinicuiles are one of the representative dishes of Tlaxcala and you can serve them as snacks or eat them with tacos. Similarly, the consumption of these worms has been considered good for health and is very common in the month of August.
The gastronomy of Tlaxcala has a great variety and within it are the basket tacos. Mainly, a characteristic detail is that these preparations are distinguished by being sold in a bicycle with a basket in different streets of the town. They are consumed at any time, although originally they were eaten only at noon.
As for the time of year to eat them, it is not defined. However, during the month of March it is a good option to celebrate National Taco Day. The truth is that if you take a walk through Tlaxcala and its gastronomy, you will see that making tacos is extremely simple.
To prepare them you need tortillas, “cascabel” peppers and garlic. You will also need onion, vegetable oil, cilantro, and salt. First, cut the chilies, onion and garlic into pieces and put them to stew.
Later, you grind them and add the water from the stew you made before. Then, you put a little sauce on the tortillas, fill them with the stew of your choice, fold them and wrap them in aluminum. Next, you must put them in a basket with a layer of wicker, butcher paper, cloth and thin plastic so that the tacos sweat and are ready to eat.
The mixiote is one of the pre-Hispanic foods of Tlaxcala and its place of origin refers to the Mexican Plateau. That is where the maguey pulquero is grown, from which the fine leaf in which the mixiotes are wrapped is extracted. In addition, it is said that the Duchess Catalina de Aragón and her husband were the first Spaniards to try them.
If you want to prepare this meal at home, have chicken or mutton, which is the meat that is most used for its characteristic flavor. First of all, bathe it in a sauce of chilies and other herbs such as thyme and oregano. Now, to give it color and seasoning, if it is to your liking, you can add achiote marinade.
Once the meat is prepared, it is essential that you wrap it in a mixiote leaf and then cook it in a steamer. After that, get ready to taste a delicious meal that is one of the most popular among travelers and that you can consume any month of the year.
Green Chicken Pozole
It is a boiled or popular broth in different states of Mexico. In them, the preparation and presentation varies according to the geographical location. Similarly, this rich dish also stands out in the gastronomy of Tlaxcala. Therefore, if you have a pending celebration, keep in mind that the pozole can be used for any party. In fact, it is usually consumed at the end of the year.
Pozole is one of the pre-Hispanic foods of Tlaxcala and the legends that have formed around it are diverse. Among them, it stands out that this boiled was offered by the Emperor Moctezuma to the God Xipe Tótec. Despite the mystique of all these legends, this food is quite common and can be prepared at home.
The bean has a marked presence and prominence in Mexican food and even more so in the pre-Hispanic foods of Tlaxcala. One of them is the tlacoyos, for which it is necessary to have lard and refried black beans. To prepare this typical meal, start by greasing the corn dough with butter.
After this, make some tortillas filled with the beans, which you must place in the center. Later, fold the ends of the tortilla in an elongated shape and the rich preparation will be ready. Likewise, you can accompany the dish by adding cheese or another contour of your preference, since this varies in different locations in Mexico. Regarding when to try them, these foods are served in a special way every September 15, Mexican independence day.
As a curious fact, you should know that tlacoyos are a “Mexican snack”, whose name derives from the Nahuatl word “tlatlaoyo”. It is one of the traditional dishes that dates back to the same time of the Aztec culture. Similarly, over time it has undergone some variations and other recipes have derived from it.
Mole is a kind of stew that is very popular and traditional in Mexican cuisine. In addition, it will serve to accompany your traditional dishes from Tlaxcala in celebrations or meals at home. Generally, it is eaten at festivals such as Easter and Carnival. Its presentations vary, but chili peppers are its fixed ingredient and, in this preparation, the turkey will accompany it.
This mole is one of the attractions of Tlaxcala and its cuisine. To prepare it, cut the turkey into pieces and cook it with garlic, onion and salt. On the other hand, brown the chiles and their seeds along with the tomato, grapes and almonds. Similarly, peppers, cloves and bolillo bread in lard. Once they are golden, blend them, and cook them with chocolate.
Later, add the pieces of turkey to the sauce obtained so that it thickens. Then add pepper and sugar while it cooks. Once the mole is ready, serve it hot and delight your palate with one of the best-known delicacies in the entire state.
Escamoles with Butter
Since ancient times, Mexican cuisine has preserved the heritage of its ancestors, which is present in most of its most notable dishes. Among them are escamoles with butter, which can be considered a typical Tlaxcala dish with insects, in which ant eggs are specifically used.
The recipe is simple and the time it will take you to make them is about 25 minutes. Once washed and drained, you must fry the eggs with the butter, onion and fine pieces of epazote and serrano pepper. To this, you add salt to taste and you will have one of the best Mexican dishes in Tlaxcala ready. Likewise, you can serve it with a tortilla, tamales or simply with the sauce that you like the most.
This curious preparation contains a high presence of proteins due to the escamoles or larvae. Also, it should be noted that the months in which you are most likely to get it are March and April.
As a Tlaxcalan soup, that is how tlatlapas are also known, a preparation based on ground yellow beans that is one of the pre-Hispanic meals of Tlaxcala. Despite the passage of time, it is worth noting that it has not undergone great variations and even in 2020 it is consumed by the Tlaxcalans in autumn and winter, mainly.
The word “tlatlapa” comes from the Nahuatl tlapana, and means “to break”, which refers to “broken beans”, which is its main ingredient. However, you can prepare it with another grain known as alberjón, which you must roast and grind. Then, you will have to boil it together with the guajillo chili and the epazote for a few minutes until the preparation thickens.
When the soup is thick, add the butter and season with a pinch of salt to taste. Also, at this point you should add the amamaxtlas so that they cook with the epazote and let them boil for another couple of minutes. This typical food is usually served in clay dishes and garnished with nopales.
Huitlacoche Black Mole
The mole prieto is part of the culture and gastronomy of Tlaxcala. It is a recipe that is known as tlilmolli and has its history in the rituals of celebration of the goddess of textiles and health, known as Toci. Currently, in the celebrations in which you can have it as an option are community parties, patron saint fairs, Easter and carnival.
In case you want to prepare it, the main ingredient of mole prieto is corn and lard. Along with them, have cinnamon, roasted sesame, cloves, slices and solid pork. Likewise, you should also have chipotle and pasilla peppers, pepper and salt.
Boil the slices and the solid in water with salt, cut them into small pieces and grind a part of the solid until it becomes a puree. Then, to the broth you must add the dough, the roasted chilies, cloves, cinnamon, sesame and pepper. Once this is done, cook it until you achieve the thickness you want and enjoy one of the party foods in Tlaxcala.
Chileatole is a kind of soup whose main ingredient is salted corn. You can prepare it at home, for parties, or eat it at fairs. However, what varies, depending on the weather, is the dish in which it is served. When it is cold, the soup is served in clay pots to keep it warm.
To prepare this, which is one of the regional foods of Tlaxcala, you must have water, corn kernels and chili peppers. Also, epazote and onion. Boil the corn and add a pinch of salt to taste. Add dough and let it cook for an hour. After turning off, add the rest of the ingredients before the first 5 minutes of rest have passed.
Chileatole varies in the different regions of Mexico where it is served with other things, such as shrimp or cheese. Now, the part of the Mexican territory in which it is consumed the most is the central-eastern part, in which it is eaten throughout the year. On the other hand, in the Tlaxcalan territory it is served above all in cold weather.
Mushroom Xolostle with Potato and Nopal
If you are looking for a main dish to accompany your celebrations, meetings or just to prepare it on any given day at home, you can venture to cook the mushroom xolostle with potatoes and nopal.
This is a delicious soup that has its origins before the arrival of the Spanish. Similarly, it is an ideal dish to consume during the month of March, especially on the 27th, when Tlaxcalteca Cuisine Day is celebrated.
To prepare this soup you will need wild mushrooms cut into small pieces and make sure they are clean. Additionally, you will require nopales in small squares, filleted garlic and onion. Similarly, you must have chipotles, potatoes and epazote. Once you have everything ready, get to work and prepare one of the special meals of Tlaxcala.
Fry the onion together with the garlic and the chipotles. Later, add the chicken broth and, as soon as it boils, add the nopales, the mushrooms and the potatoes, in addition to adding salt to taste. However, to make it a complete main course, accompany it with chicken and surprise your guests.
Each of the Mexican meals will conquer you with their outstanding aspects, which range from their particularity to the various ways of preparing them. In this case, you will find a traditional recipe in which corn, the number 1 ingredient of Mexicans, is present only in its leaf. The latter gives the roasted tamale a characteristic flavor that is part of Tlaxcala and its gastronomy.
Therefore, to delight your palate with the roasted tamale you must have nopales, quelites, mushrooms, or cottage cheese. However, you may think that one more ingredient is missing here, but no. What makes these tamales distinctive is that there is no dough anywhere, but only what is mentioned, which is why it is one of the main attractions of Tlaxcala.
The mushrooms, nopales, cottage cheese, or whatever you have decided to prepare it with, place them inside the sheet and close them very well. Then, you put them to cook in a comal until the leaf burns and this dish that is usually consumed all year round will be ready. Additionally, you should know that the name of these tamales comes from “tatemar” which means “to burn” the leaf.
Mole De La Matuma
The matuma mole is a reddish-colored stew that is essential in the celebration of the San Juan de Ixtenco fairs. Its main ingredient is guajillo chilies and corn dough, as in other traditional dishes from Tlaxcala. In addition to this, it is customary to accompany it with beef.
To make this food you have to use coriander seeds and cinnamon. In addition to beef, the stew, also called brick mole due to its color, can be served with tamales, tortillas, and even accompanied with pulque. Without a doubt, mole is traditional in regional food and cannot be missing from many local tables.
This mass is so important and emblematic for the Ixtenco region that in 2016 it was declared Intangible Heritage of that town. Therefore, in the festivities of San Juan de Ixtenco, during the month of June, you cannot stop preparing the matuma mole and pay tribute to Tlaxcalan gastronomy.
Pulque is one of the traditional drinks of Tlaxcala and is prepared in advance, because its main ingredient, which is mead, must be fermented first. After 15 days, you will obtain a seed that you have to water so that the mother pulque will emerge and you will have the starting pulque.
In addition to this, pulque is also one of the pre-Hispanic drinks that does not have an exact origin, because over the years the story about how it was born has changed.
However, what has been maintained between the past and the current era is that pulque, even in 2020, is known as the “elixir of the gods”. Likewise, it is usually consumed throughout the year and at any time of the day, although they recommend not doing it after 9 p.m.
It stands out among the main drinks of the state and in its beginnings it was drunk by priests and religious leaders. Additionally, it should be noted that the drink is produced in dry climates. In addition, it is consumed in some places in the United States.
During the cold season between December and February, the sour atole appears in the food recipes of Tlaxcala. The main ingredient in this recipe is purple fermented dough, which gives it the sour touch that characterizes it. As for its preparation, the first thing will be to boil the dough with corn of the same color to intensify the shade of purple.
Then, the next step is to strain it and boil it with the cinnamon and piloncillo. Simultaneously, boil the beans together with the tequesquite and once they are ready, serve them in a bowl or bowl. A curious fact is that the atole, whose meaning is “watery”, is one of the pre-Hispanic foods of Tlaxcala, like most of the state’s gastronomic dishes.
In addition to this, purple corn was considered sacred in past times and it is not common to get it in any country, since it tends to occur in nations such as Bolivia, Peru and Mexico. Also, its color is the cause of a genetic mutation, so its pigmentation is its own and not artificial.
Rice atole is one of the traditional drinks of Tlaxcala, it is also quite representative within Mexican cuisine. It is prepared in different ways and dates back to ancient times. Generally, it is usually taken in times of very cold. However, it is sought in the same way on other occasions.
If you are looking for medicinal effects, rice atole is used to keep those who suffer from severe diarrhea hydrated and, in several cases, some use it in their diets. Now, making this recipe will take you a few minutes. The first step you must follow to prepare one of the typical drinks of the state of Tlaxcala is to grind the rice and leave it as a powder.
Once you have the ground rice, heat it together with the milk and add cinnamon and sugar. Then, cook it until it thickens, add vanilla and mix it. As soon as it is ready, serve it and try to drink it hot. Additionally, if you want to decorate it, you can sprinkle a little cinnamon on the atole. In addition to this, thanks to the importance of atole in the culture of the region, you can find this delicious drink in many street vendors in the town.
“Agua De Barranca” (Canyon Water)
Agua De Barranca is one of the pre-Hispanic drinks of Tlaxcala. This sparkling drink owes its name to the resemblance it has to the water that runs through the ravines or cliffs of the region. As for its preparation, you must have cocoa as the main ingredient and corn, cacahuazintle and broad bean as secondary.
In addition, it is not only known as canyon water, but also as a cocoa drink. On the other hand, an interesting fact is that in 2014 the congress declared it Intangible Cultural Heritage of the state. Finally, if you want to buy the most popular canyon water in the state of Tlaxcala, you can go to the vendors’ stalls in the Plaza Mayor or Zócalo de Zacatelco.
“Tlaxcala Verde” (Green Tlaxcala)
The Tlaxcala Verde is a combination of emblematic Tlaxcalan ingredients, it is one of the best drinks prepared in Tlaxcala and mixes two extraordinary flavors that are also traditional in the state. Its preparation will not take you more than 20 minutes and you can have it for your celebrations, especially for young people, since this drink is one of their favorites. Best of all, it is consumed throughout the year.
Its main ingredient is distilled pulque and mead. In addition, for its preparation you must have other supplies, such as mint, ice and lemon. Punctually, for the preparation of the cocktail, the mint must be boiled together with the lemons. After this, you must sift them and add the mead. Finally, ice and pulque are added so that it is ready.
On the other hand, this cocktail can also be one of the alcoholic beverages of Tlaxcala and many choose to add vodka. However, you choose how you prefer to take it according to your tastes.
If the little ones in the house, and even the adults, want a sweet, don’t miss the opportunity to prepare some peanut bars for them. It is a candy whose name in Nahuatl means “happy or cheerful”.
These delicacies are ideal to taste on any occasion, as well as being a symbol within the typical dessert recipes of Tlaxcala. At first, they were based on nuts that were ground and roasted, but over time they have changed.
Despite this, the main thing for its preparation are peanuts and honey. Now, the palanquetas are shaped like nougats and you can get them in various local markets, although you will surely have more fun preparing them at home. To do this, cook the sugar with water and liquid glucose, then mix it together with the peanuts, bicarbonate of soda and butter to form a uniform dough.
Once this is done, place the dough in a previously greased tray, container or tray to prevent them from sticking. As soon as it cools down, chop and share the delicious peanut sticks with your friends and family, and eat them accompanied by a drink.
“Alegrías de Amaranto” (Amaranth Joys)
The amaranth joys are delicious sweets that you will try in Tlaxcala, during different festivities in the state of Tlaxcala, the streets are filled with “joy, joy”, a traditional sweet inherited from the past, which is still prepared by many locals. Some make it in its original form, while others prepare it with certain variations.
The main ingredient of this candy, which is also part of Tlaxcala and its gastronomy, is amaranth. The seeds of this characteristic fruit of America are mixed with sweetener or honey and put in a pot with water and piloncillo.
“Buñuelos With Requesón” (Fritters with cottage cheese)
In the typical bread and dessert recipes of Tlaxcala, party bread is inevitable, especially in the patron saint festivities. As for its preparation, its special secret is cooking it in stone ovens to give it a different touch. Now, on special dates you can get them outside the state churches, which will allow you to try this delicious bread that has been made for more than 100 years.
The party bread comes in two forms: round and ladder. Although they are varied, the main ingredients are wheat flour, egg and yeast, with which the dough is prepared. Its elaboration is quite traditional, although something that makes it very peculiar is the sesame seeds that are used to decorate it.
If you are on vacation in the Tlaxcalteca region, prepare it at home or buy it at the fairs, but do not forget to try the most emblematic bread of the state. Also, keep in mind that you can eat it alone, but the ideal is to accompany it with coffee, punch, or the hot drink of your choice.
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