Looking for Authentic Mexican Food? Here’s What You Need to Know

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In the United States alone, there are 67,391 restaurants that serve burritos. However, not all of those restaurants are necessarily worth a visit. It can be hard to know what to look for when searching for quality Mexican food and you may have a lot of questions on your mind: What’s the difference between flour and corn tortillas? What are the nutritional benefits of Mexican food? Is guacamole extra? Clearly, there is a lot to consider before deciding where to eat.

Is it Tex-Mex?

This colorful fusion of two cultures is quite popular in the U.S. Tex-Mex was invented in the 1940s and combines the cuisine of Mexico with it’s neighbor, the state of Texas. If you’re into lots of cheese, meat like beef and pork, beans, and spices, this might be for you. Chili con carne nachos and fajitas are also Tex-Mex staples.

So you know you want to bypass Tex-Mex and look for authentic Mexican food.

Mexican food has a rich history, potentially going back as far as the Mayan Indians 2000 years ago. Here are some things to look for if you want the “real Mexican food”:

Soft Shells – Hard shells may be popular in America but according to Business Insider, Mexican tacos are small and soft.
White Cheese – Like with the shells, Americans have their own idea of what cheese to put in tacos, even inventing the “Mexican blend” cheese you find in grocery stores. Once again, Business Insider set us straight, explaining that traditional Mexican food contains fresh white cheese.
Crema – Leave your sour cream at home and use crema instead. This sauce runnier but not as sour as what we’re used to.

You’ve found authentic Mexican food. Now what?

Even after discovering authentic Mexican food, you might still have some questions before deciding on the best Mexican food for you.

Seriously, what’s the difference between flour and corn tortillas?
Good question! According to thekitchn.com, the biggest difference between flour and corn tortillas is the former are soft and pliable and have a “neutral sweetish flavor” while the latter have a more “firm and chewy texture”. What you eat really depends on personal preference but you might find corn tortillas to be more versatile, using them for everything from tacos to taquitos or even corn chips.

What are the best Mexican restaurants?
It depends on what you’re looking for! Definitely do your research, checking review sites like Yelp for things like quality service and yummy dishes. Mexican cuisine has a variety of dishes so you might find one place with the best burrito while somewhere else has killer quesadillas. Don’t be afraid to explore!

What are my healthy options?
Verywell.com recommends going with black beans as they are low in fat but high in protein and fiber. Healthy Dining Finder encourages loading up on vegetables and trying whole wheat tortillas. Like with anything else, you want to maintain portion control. Anything fried or with a lot of cheese is probably not the best option if you’re counting those calories.

There you have it! You finally know the difference between flour and corn tortillas and Tex-Mex and Authentic Mexican food, and you can spot some of the healthier options. You’re finally ready to go out and eat! Remember, know matter where you go, try new things and make the best of your experience. The best part of Mexican food is the experience that goes along with it. Plus, it’s really easy to share!

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