Mexican foods use an aromatic blend of herbs and spices complemented by variety of chiles that really awaken the senses.
A sprinkling of pure oregano helps gives Mexican food its robust taste. Cumin's has a warm, earthy flavor and is used sparingly so it doesn't overshadow the other flavors. Chiles are really the heart and soul of any traditional meal, and smoky Chipotle chiles can be added to spice things up a bit. For a rich, savory, sweet note, try dried Ancho chiles.
Mexican Flavor Stories
Explore easy ways to use these herbs and spices for delicious Mexican flavor.
- Oregano: The Mexican Oregano variety is related to lemon verbena. It brings citrus and anise flavors, and is much more pungent than Mediterranean oregano. Try Oregano Leaves.
- Chipotle: McCormick chipotle chili peppers begin as whole jalapeño peppers grown in the hot, sunny climate of Mexico. We harvest them as whole pepper pods, and then gently smoke them over a wood fire before they’re dried and ground. Today’s cooks prize chipotle pepper for its rich flavor, smoky sweetness, and gentle heat. Try Chipotle Chili Pepper
- Cumin: Cumin is in chili powder, taco seasoning and most every Mexican and Southwest-inspired dish. Chili, salsa, fillings for tacos and empanadas, tomato sauce for enchiladas, mole sauce—all call for lightly toasted cumin seed. Try Ground Cumin or Cumin Seed.
- Hot Chili: Chile peppers are the base for much of Mexican cuisine. This spicy blend of chilies and other spices makes cooking Mexican-inspired dishes easy. Try Chili Powder.
- Garlic: Your favorite Mexican recipes are another perfect home for roasted garlic. Taco and burrito fillings, salsa and guacamole are just a few ideas. The strong flavor of garlic powers many Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes. Garlic powder makes it easy to amplify the savory warmth of taco fillings made with beef or pork and cooked tomato sauce for burritos. Try Garlic Powder or Roasted Garlic Powder.
- Sesame Seeds: Sesame seeds bring nutty, toasty flavor and a crispy crunch to sweet and savory dishes from around the globe. It's great for Mexican mole and adobo sauces. Try Sesame Seeds.
- Ancho: Dried smoked poblano peppers, known as ancho, are especially popular in Mexican cuisine. From rice and beans to mole, ancho lends a sweet, smoky, and mildly spicy flavor to many dishes. Try Ancho Chile Pepper.
- Cinnamon: Cinnamon brings a toasty undertone to savory dishes in many cultures and is great for Mexican chili. Add roasted Cinnamon for greater richness and depth to your Mexican dishes. Try Ground Cinnamon or Roasted Cinnamon.
Get creative and add a different herb or spice to your favorite dish. It all starts with flavor.