Puebla MExico Food guide

The country of Mexico is known for incredible food, but no city is more famous for culinary inventions than Puebla Mexico. Puebla, Mexico is the birthplace of one of Mexico’s most famous dishes, mole poblano, in addition to dozens of other specialties you can only get in this area. If you’re planning a trip to Puebla, Mexico here are 10 foods you must try!

Taco arabes

I think it’s safe to say that tacos are Mexico’s most widely known and loved foods. All across Mexico you can enjoy delicious and cheap tacos, but only in Puebla can you have a Taco Arabe. Tacos Arabes originated in Puebla during World War I when Middle Easterners came to Mexico bringing the shawarma with them. This move is also the inspiration for Mexico’s most famous taco, Taco al Pastor. Instead of being served on a corn tortilla like a traditional Mexican taco, Tacos Arabes are served on a flour tortilla similar to flat bread with delicious pieces of slow roasted pork. These tacos are best enjoyed smothered in a spicy sauce and squeeze of lime, but be warned they are cheap and addictive!

Where to Eat Tacos Arabes:

  • Taqueria Viviana (where we went)
  • Tacos Arabes Bagdad Centro
  • Las Ranas

mole

Mole is a famous Mexican dish that is a blend of various Mexican spices. Moles come in many different forms, but in Puebla, Mexico Mole Poblano is the mole of choice. Legend has it that mole poblano, a rich, dark, spicy mole made with chocolate was created by a Nun who was short on food for the visit of an Archbishop.

Mole Poblano may be the most famous type of mole, but you can also enjoy delicious Mole Pipian in Puebla as well. This mole is made from a mixture of spices and nuts, which could be pumpkin seeds (Pipan Verde) or peanuts (Pipian Rojo).

Where to Try Mole:

  • El Mural de Poblano (where we went)
  • Celia’s Cafe
  • Case Reyna
  • El Viejo Rosario
  • Comal

pasita shot

La Pasita is an institution in Puebla, and has been a well known drinking establishment since 1916. The name of the bar is after their original liquor drink, called a Pasita, which is made from fermented raisin paste. Served with aged cheese, this sweet drink is the perfect break for a food tour of the city. Be careful though – this drink is over 20% ABV and can knock you off your feet if you’re not used to drinking.

escamoles

Escamoles, or ant larvae, may not sound appetizing, but in the state of Puebla, they are considered a delicacy. This ancient food, eaten by the elite of the Aztec is a seasonal dish, typically sautéed in butter and topped with basil is a unique dish you must try if you’re visiting Puebla in the spring months (Feb – May). We saw signs for fresh escamoles everywhere we drove which made it very apparent that this was a loved dish by Mexican natives. Escamoles are eaten like a taco, with fresh guacamole and have an earthy taste, but honestly are pretty tasty. If you’re adventorous and up for a new food — give escamoles a try!

Where to Try Escamoles:

  • El Mural de Poblano (where we went)

chalupas

We had chalupas all wrong coming from the states. Chalupas are a speciality of Puebla, Mexico and are lightly fried tortillas covered in two types of salsa — salsa verde and salsa rojo. Topped with pork and raw onions, these crunchy yet soft chalupas are crazy good!

Where to Try Chalupas:

  • Celia’s Cafe
  • El Parián
  • Comal

Pelona

Pelona means baldy in Spanish, and is given to this sandwich because the bread is deep fried having a slightly shiny top to the bun. Filled with shredded beef, lettuce, tomato, and cream, the Pelona is a must try — but in all honestly, for us, didn’t hit the mark. You can get Pelonas just about anywhere but can definitely be found in a Antojitos restaurant.

Where to Try Pelonas:

  • Antojitos Tony
  • Antojitos Alcapulco

molotes

Throughout the city of Puebla, you will see signs for molotes at restaurants, street vendors, and can be found in every Antojitos stall. Molotes are a flash fried tortilla filled with cheese, vegetables, or meat of choice. We almost ordered a molote with sesos by recommendation of a local but realized it was cow brains and opted for a more mild filled molote with cheese, jalapeños, and basil.

Where to Try Molotes:

  • Antojitos Tony
  • Antojitos Alcapulco

tamales

We love tamales. We’ve had a tamales multiple times throughout our trip through Mexico including delicious acelgas (Swiss chard) tamales in Guanajuato, but none have been as good as the tamales we got from Tamales de Lupita. This non-descript shop is only open for a few hours during the week (check google or their sign out front) and will typically have a line well before they open. Tamales can only be purchased to go, and come in about 7 or 8 different flavors. We opted for chipotle, mole, and a sweet tamale with crema. We walked down the street to a Pulque bar where we devoured them and walked back for more. Honestly, they are the best thing we’ve eaten so far in our 3 months across Mexico.

camotes

Calle Santa Clara is a famous street known for their sweets, and is often called la Calle de Las Dulces or the sweet street. Camotes is the most famous traditional Mexican candy made from sweet potatoes which can be ordered in a variety of different flavors including strawberry, coconut, or pineapple. They aren’t very sweet, and definitely have a sweet potato consistency to them. They weren’t our favorite, but is by far the most famous sweet of the region. We did however, enjoy Tortitas de Santa Clara, a cookie made from marzapan that was so tasty we bought some to go. You can grab a camote or tortita de santa clara anywhere along Santa Clara Street.

chiles en nogada

Chiles en Nogada is another seasonal speciality of Puebla, which is typically served in the summer months around Mexico’s Independence Day. The poblano chile is stuffed with meats, fruits, and spices, and smothered in a walnut  cream sauce topped with pomegranate seeds, resembling the colors of the Mexican flag. There are a number of places that will serve this dish year round, but to truly appreciate it’s incredible flavors, try to order this when it’s typically served (July – September), and if you’re visiting outside of those months opt for a different seasonal speciality available at that time. 

Where to Try Chiles en Nogada:

  • Mural de Poblanos is most famous for this dish but only serves it when in season
  • Fonda “Cemitas Robert y antojitos Lulú”
  • Mesón de Santa Teresa

We ate as much food as we possibly could during our two days in Puebla, and felt like we were just touching the surface. There is so much more tasty food to try in Puebla, Mexico and is a definite destination for foodies traveling to Mexico. Other notable foods to try that are specific to the region of Puebla are:

  • Cemitas: oversized sandwiches on a brioche bun with sesame seeds. They are like a torta on steroids.
  • Memelas: a thicker tortilla lightly fried and covered in salsa topped with beans, cheese, or meat.
  • Chanclas: a wet sandwich filled with meat, avocado, and onion best eaten with a fork and knife because it’s covered in a special red salsa.

If you’ve tried any of these foods leave a comment below letting us know which is your favorite, or if you have any suggestions for other Puebla specialities to try when we return.

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Liz & Dennis

Liz & Dennis

ESRV Team

We’re two travel-loving, real estate investing, foodies exploring North America as full-time RV’ers. This blog is where we share our lessons learned, tips and tricks, and favorite places to eat, see, and RV across North America! We hope it helps you find your wanderlust, plan and prepare for RV life, and get out on the road!

 

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