guides you to the best local dishes & drinks in
125+ cities.
See map now

Join the Project

EYW wants your food photos!

Bake & Shark

Trinidad and Tobago

Upload a photo now

Food Memories

EYW wants your food stories!

Taliwang Chicken

Taliwang, Sumbawa

On my first trip to Indonesia to visit my wife (who spoke limited English), I spoke not a word of Bahasa and quickly learned that English is not at all common on the remote island of Mataram. With her... Read more

Write a Food Memory now

<< back to foods in Mexico


A cup of hot atole from Tamales Emporio in Mexico City.

What: Calling atole, a hot beverage with roots in Aztec tradition, “liquid corn gruel” simply doesn’t do justice to its deliciousness. We could happily start our every day with a cup of atole and a moist tamal, as many Mexicans around the world do, and have for centuries, back when atole was meant to fuel laborers through the morning workload. It can be thick and porridge-like or light and watery, depending on the atole maker. Traditionally, it’s made from masa (freshly ground corn dough, or its flour (harina), treated with lime) that is cooked and then boiled with water, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla; it is especially popular for el Día de los Muertos and around Christmas. But you’ll see it year-round, too, and in many fruit and other flavors—rice, nut, eggnog, chocolate (see: champurrado). Try as many as you can! It’s usually not that sweet, but comforting, filling, and deeply warming—probably why it’s mostly drunk in the morning and evening.

Where: Restaurants specializing in tamales will usually offer various atoles as well, but you’ll most often see this sold on the street in the morning (look for the vendors ladling out of big steel containers). Ours is from Tamales Emporio (Alvaro Obregón 154, map) in Mexico City’s Roma neighborhood, where atole varieties (22p) include guayaba (like a thick, sweet, pink fruit-corn shake served hot) and de rompope (a hot, creamy, smooth concoction with eggnog flavoring). In Oaxaca, we tried a much cheaper, equally delicious atole de arroz (6p) from the torta de tamal morning street cart (corner 5 de Mayo and Morelos); it tasted like drinkable rice pudding, minus the super sweetness.


Oaxaca Kindle Guide

Now on!

New Orleans Food & Travel Guide by Eat Your World

Download our Oaxaca Food & Travel Guide to your Kindle, smartphone, or tablet and get the inside scoop on 40 delicious typical foods and drinks in Oaxaca, plus bonus recipes from a popular Oaxacan chef. $3.99

Click here to buy


Sign up for monthly updates on new destinations + food stories.

Your personal info is private. We will not spam you.

Forgot password