Mexican street food, also referred to as “antojitos,” is something of a legend in the food world. It is estimated that of the population in the Distro Federal in Mexico, 75 percent eat street food at least once a week. This is incredible because there are so many options, from breakfast foods to dinner foods and all the snacks in between. Tlacoyos are a traditional Mexican street food that was enjoyed even in pre-Hispanic Mexico. The name for this dish comes from a variation of the Nahuatl word “tlahtlaoyoh.” Tlacoyos come in three different colors, the most unusual being blue. There are no artificial colors used in the making of tlacoyos, instead the final product’s color is determined by the corn meal used. Ours were not blue, but instead that familiar tannish yellow tortilla color.

These are not the kind of food that make particularly good leftovers because they tend to harden up as they cool down, and they don’t usually reheat very well, so make a few for dinner or a bunch for a party. Tlacoyos are usually served with prickly pear cactus paddles called “nopales.” Traditionally they are topped with a salsa and nothing else, but you can feel free to get a little creative yourself.

Our taste testers were impressed and surprised with how thick the tortilla was. Jeff made these himself, and you should probably make them so they are as fresh as possible for the recipe. Store bought just isn’t the same in this case. The tlacoyos were folded into a leaf shape and then enjoyed by the lucky few who got their hands on them. This is a really yummy vegetarian recipe, as the filling is primarily beans. We added some extra flavor to our filling with our Organic Manzanillo Seasoning.

 Print Recipe

Prep Time: 20 min.
Cuisine: Mexican
  • 1-1/2 cups masa harina (traditional Mexican corn flour)
  • 1/4 tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 tsp Organic Manzanillo Seasoning
  • 1-1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, or a cup fresh black beans, mashed
  • 1 cup red or green salsa - Try our Roasted Salsa Verde or Roasted Tomato Salsa
  • 1/2 cup Cojita Cheese, or a similar Mexican cheese crumbled or grated
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely minced
  • 1 cup nopales (Nopal cactus pads)
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  1. In a medium bowl, mix masa harina and salt with warm water. Mix well to form a smooth dough. Knead for a few minutes until soft. Let rest for 10-15 minutes, covering with a damp towel. Place beans in a bowl, add 1 tsp Organic Manzanillo and mash until smooth (we used a potato masher). Heat griddle to medium.
  2. Divide dough into 8 pieces. Keep a small bowl of water handy while doing this step. Roll pieces into 8 balls. With a press or a rolling pin, place a ball of dough between two sheets of plastic and flatten until about 1/8 of an inch thick, approximately 5-6 inches in diameter. This is traditionally done with the hands in Mexico. If you’re confident doing that, go for it!
  3. Place a heaping Tbsp of the bean filling in the center of the circle. Fold one side of the circle over, and press sides together. Lightly roll flat the filling, with a rolling pin or your hand. Repeat until you have 8 pieces.
  4. Tlacoyos can be pan fried, or deep fried or simply grilled. We used a griddle for ours, with no oil. Place the Tlacoyos on the griddle, 2-3 minutes per side.
  5. To serve, top with nopales, onion, salsa, and cheese.