Exploring the chilaquiles torta in Mexico City

The chilaquiles torta in Mexico City is the boom of many street food stands in the Mexican capital.

Although they still do not compete in popularity with the king of street food, tacos, no one can deny that their presence is gaining more strength in the Mexican market.

In this sense, the chilaquiles torta in Mexico City is a tortilla or bread stuffed with an explosive mixture, where sausages, meat and spice are the center of attention.

The chilaquiles torta in Mexico City attracts more and more people every year to the main fast food stands, and is a sure dish in most fast food sales.

For many people in the interior of the country it may be an abomination to Mexican gastronomy, for taking out of the way what identifies many dishes: the tortilla, replaced by a bolillo bread.

But this bread is not soft, it is simply a toasted bread; before it was just a day-old bread and it was hard.

The chilaquiles torta in Mexico City and its evolution.

In some regions it is used with the so-called pan muerto (dead bread) as part of the celebration of the Day of the Dead in Mexico.

So, the chilaquiles torta in Mexico City has varied according to the worldwide marketing that pushes a more modern and less traditional concept.

Chilaquiles torta in Mexico City are a typical Mexican dish consisting of fried corn tortillas cut into triangles, dipped in chili sauce and accompanied by various ingredients, such as cheese, cream, onion and shredded chicken/meat.

Chilaquiles can be served as breakfast or lunch, but in Mexico City they have gone a step further by becoming the main ingredient in a torta.


The base of the torta is usually a bolillo, a type of bread that is crusty on the outside and soft on the inside.

The bolillo is opened and generously filled with chilaquiles, which can be prepared in different styles, from classic red to green or Swiss.

And so popular is the chilaquiles torta in Mexico City that many tourists rush to line up to try the most famous ones.

This Mexican specialty captivates diners with its explosion of flavors, textures and aromas.

Whether you enjoy it as an energizing breakfast or a comforting lunch, the chilaquiles torta will transport you directly to the flavors of Mexico.

Background of the chilaquiles cake in Mexico City

For many, the basic stew, chilaquiles, dates back to pre-Hispanic times, and over time, ingredients were added to achieve that particular flavor.

But, the origin is a Hispanic heritage, so it is part of the culinary miscegenation in Mexico.

It is believed that, in order to take advantage of the hardened tortillas or breads of the previous day, they were bathed in chilmulli to soften them.


The first written reference to chilaquiles (that has reached our time) was in 1821 in the recipe book Arte nuevo de cocina y repostería acomodado al uso mexicano by the publisher Casa de Lanuza Mendía.

According to the historical description, pork and sausages were cooked, clemole, tortillas and toasted sesame seeds were soon added; a layer of meat was put on top and covered with tortillas; clemole broth and a handful of sesame seeds were added.

The chilaquiles torta in Mexico City is so popular, that it is used as slang, in the case of the capital, it refers to something messy or disastrous.

And that’s what a chilaquiles cake in Mexico City is, a mix of ingredients that generate that particular flavor.

An urban tradition is to eat it for breakfast for people who suffer a hangover after a night of partying.

It is also a typical dish as part of the celebrations after a traditional Mexican wedding, where it is served in the “tornamesa”, which is a second or final round of dishes served to the guests.

The Esquina of the Chilaquil

To know the most original taste of the chilaquiles cake in Mexico City, you have to visit a place as popular as it is traditional.

For about two decades, the Esquinal del Chilaquil has made its table the best display of the chilaquiles torta in Mexico City.

La Esquinal del Chilaquil was created two decades ago. It is not a formal restaurant, it is just a stand with its tables outside to prepare, but in popularity it competes with any restaurant in Mexico City.

La esquina del Chilaquil is located on the corner of Alfonso Reyes and Tamaulipas in the Condesa neighborhood of Mexico City.

They are open from 8 am to 1 pm every day. But if you decide to go, get there early, because the chilaquiles cakes run out fast.

According to Perla “La Güera”, heir to the corner stand, and who currently runs it, it was about 22 years ago that the first chilaquiles torta in Mexico City was born.

The origin is in Perla’s grandmother, who had a tamale and atole stand on this same corner some 70 years ago.

However, over the years, the popularity of these tamales grew in Mexico City, so she and her daughter, Doña Chayito, decided to add more options, and began selling chilaquiles.

The chilaquil stew was served with anything; but according to what they say in this corner, the family had a novel idea, to put the chilaquiles in a roll.

According to Perla, this way they were able to sell the chilaquiles to the employees who came to their offices, and eat in a practical way.

At the Chilaquil corner in Mexico City you can find a wide variety, such as simple chilaquiles with beans, fried breaded chicken breast, cream and fresh cheese.

But you can also customize it and change it for red chilaquiles and shredded chicken.

This place is so popular that it is included in the tour of tourists visiting Mexico City.

This corner, not only has the business of La Güera, but also dozens of vendors that revolve around the sale of street food.

It is worth mentioning that Doña Natividad, originally from Veracruz, as well as her family, worked as a janitor in a building while she sold atole and tamales in the same corner where the temple of the chilaquil stands today.

As Rosario Flores Mancilla, better known as “Chayito”, grew up and with the knowledge she had inherited, she built this emblematic place, which today is managed by Perla, the heiress of a dynasty.

Other places where they sell chilaquiles torta in Mexico City:

Well, the places are very varied, anywhere you can buy a torta de chilaquiles in Mexico City, among them:

Tortas de chilaquiles next to metro Auditorio.

Doña Cata -who used to work at Esquina del chilaquil- has an incredible seasoning, the sauce is just right, neither spicy nor tasteless. It is located next to the Estela de Luz on Reforma.

El Chilaquil Relleno; located two blocks from Metro Barranca, these chilaquiles are on another level. The totopos are filled with chicken, meat or cheese.

Fonda Karina; they sell tortas de chilaquiles in Mexico City in front of the National School of Biological Sciences of the IPN, they have the best tortas de chilaquiles in the area.

Tamal Rico, they are located in the south of Mexico City, near the Metro at 47 Pirineos Ave.


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