The typical desserts of Tabasco are a culinary delight made with exotic fruits; sweet breads, cookies and tender corn cakes, which you deserve to try during your visit to this state in the southeastern region of Mexico.

We invite you to discover these artisanal delicacies in this walk through the 10 typical desserts of Tabasco.

1. Sweet guapaque

The guapaque is an exotic fruit with a bittersweet flavor reminiscent of tamarind, whose velvety pulp enclosed in a soft and brittle shell (with a high content of vitamin C) is very pleasant to the palate.

The people of Tabasco used to put a container with guapaques in the center of the table to eat as if they were grapes, while they talked.

How to make the sweet?

The shell is removed from a sufficient amount of guapaque to obtain a kilo of shelled fruit. Half a liter of water is heated and when it boils, add the fruit while stirring. Add a kilo of sugar and continue stirring and cooking until a sweet paste forms (approximately half an hour).

The native species of Mexico grows mainly in Tabasco, Veracruz, Yucatan, Campeche and Chiapas. It is also called guacho, huapaque, tamarind, wild tamarind, palo lacandón and paque. The indigenous people of the Lacandona jungle call it, wäch´.

2. Cocoyol candy

One of the typical desserts of Tabasco is made with the fruit of the coyol, a tropical American palm called cocoyol in the Yucatan Peninsula and known in other South American countries as the spiny palm of the Antilles, corozo, wine palm and Paraguay nut.

This fruit is also used to prepare a native drink and the heart of the palm tree is eaten as a heart of palm.

A recipe to prepare the candy requires 20 cocoyoles, 400 grams of piloncillo, a liter of water, a cinnamon stick and 3 anise stars.

First the cocoyoles are washed and peeled. Heat the liter of water and when it boils, add the piloncillo and the star anise. After the piloncillo is diluted, the cocoyoles are added and a reduction is made for about 20 minutes.

The sweets are served in a small deep dish, with a portion of honey. A variant that enriches the recipe is to add pieces of dried coconut during cooking.

3. Cakes

Queques are cookies made from wheat flour and piloncillo typical of Mexico, traditionally made with sawn or wavy edges.

For a sufficient quantity of cakes for the whole family, use 250 grams of flour, 180 grams of butter, 120 grams of muscovado sugar, 50 grams of ground piloncillo, one egg yolk, one teaspoon of anise seeds, half a teaspoon of cinnamon and a teaspoon of water.

The piloncillo is ground together with the anise seeds and reserved. The flour is kneaded with the butter, the muscovado sugar and the cinnamon and the piloncillo and anise mixture is incorporated, kneading again.

Add the egg yolk and water and knead until well integrated. The dough is spread on plastic wrap, wrapped and refrigerated for half an hour. The cakes are cut and baked at 180 ° C until golden brown (approximately 30 minutes).

4. Joloches

Joloches are typical sweets from Jahuacapa, a Tabascan town in the municipality of Jalapa, 41 km south of Villahermosa.

There are mainly sweet potato with soursop and sweet potato with pineapple, but they all have in common that they are wrapped in joloches, the dried leaves of the corn cob.

The sweet potato joloches with soursop are made with a kilo of sweet potato, a kilo of the white-fleshed fruit, a kilo of sugar and a liter of water.

The sweet potato is washed and put to cook in enough water. Once cooked, peel and knead. The soursop is washed and peeled, the fibrous heart and the seeds are removed and a smoothie is made with a liter of water.

In a preferably copper pot, put the sweet potato dough, the soursop smoothie and the sugar and cook over moderate heat for an hour, always stirring with a wooden spoon or shovel.

Let it cool and assemble the sweets in an oval shape to wrap them in joloches and tie them with thin strips of the same leaf.

5. Sisguaj

Corn is one of the staple foods of Mexico used by Tabasqueños to make a sweet cake called: sisquaj.

The sisguaj contains cow’s milk, chicken eggs and cane sugar. A cake of 4 portions can be prepared with 10 tender corn, 250 grams of sugar, 250 ml of milk, 3 eggs, 250 grams of butter, 125 grams of lard, 125 grams of aged cheese and icing sugar.

The corn is shelled and blended together with the eggs, milk, lard, butter, cheese and sugar, until a uniform mixture is formed.

Cover a baking pan with waxed paper, grease and pour in the smoothie. The oven is preheated and the cake is baked at 200 °C for 2 hours. Sprinkle with icing sugar after unmolding.

6. Sweet de nance

The born or nanche is a tree whose fruit is used to make one of the typical desserts of Tabasco.

The species grows in several Mexican states, especially in Guerrero, Michoacán, Nayarit, Sinaloa, Veracruz, Morelos and Tabasco.

The bark of the tree is used in natural medicine and the olive-like fruit is yellow in color and has a strong aroma when ripe.

Mexicans eat the natural nance and use it in the preparation of fresh water, ice cream, ice cream and sweets, to tan aguardiente and, fermented, to make tepache, a type of craft beer with less than 1% alcohol.

The sweet is very easy to prepare. For 1 kilo of ripe nances, 1 kilo of sugar, 4 cinnamon sticks and water are required.

The nances are boiled in enough water until the shell splits. They are soaked changing the water twice until they soften. Squeeze lightly to remove excess liquid and place over low heat with 4 cups of water, sugar, and cinnamon, cooking until honey forms.

7. Panetela

Panetela is a sweet bread made with wheat flour and egg whites beaten with sugar and yolks.

It is a soft, fluffy and delicious artisan bread, considered a delicacy in Tabasco.

The best panetelas in the state are made in the Emiliano Zapata municipality, where a few family bakeries make the product for distribution throughout the region.

A panetela for 8 servings is made with 420 grams of wheat flour, 12 eggs, 24 tablespoons of sugar and half an orange peel.

Separate the whites from the yolks and beat them to the point of nougat, gradually adding the sugar, the yolks and the grated orange peel. At the end, add the flour in small portions, stirring gently after each addition. Bake over medium heat.

In the town of Emiliano Zapata, head of the municipality, they make panetela approximately 3 cm high and 8 cm in diameter.

Between the end of November and the beginning of December, the Panetela Cultural and Craft Festival is held, with tastings of the rich bread and cultural events.

8. Sweet caramelized bananas

Caramelized ripe plantains are eaten in many parts of Mexico and Latin America. They have different names such as sweet bananas, temptation bananas, caramelized bananas and bananas in the cauldron, but in all recipes the fruit must be very ripe and caramelized in a syrup, adding spices and even hotness.

To make a sweet with 4 bananas, you need 4 tablespoons of butter to fry them and a syrup to prepare with 225 grams of piloncillo (replaceable with brown sugar), a cup of semi-sweet wine, 3 grams of sweet pepper, 4 cloves, 2 cinnamon sticks and optionally, half a tablespoon of chipotle tabasco sauce.

For the syrup, cook the wine, the 3 spices and the piloncillo over low heat until it dissolves completely, adding the Tabasco sauce if you want a spicy touch. Cooking is continued so that the syrup is infused with the spices. Sift the syrup to remove any remaining spices and set aside.

Thickly sliced ​​or chunked bananas are fried in butter until golden brown and syrup is added, cooking over medium-low heat until fruit is caramelized (25-30 minutes).

9. Sweet “monkey ear”

The monkey’s ear is a papaya rich in vitamin A, C, lycopene (antioxidant), cryptoxanthin (flavonoid), papain (digestive enzyme) and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium and phosphorus.

This dessert is one of the most popular sweets since the monkey ear papaya grows wild in the state.

Green papayas are peeled and cut into two halves to remove the seeds. They are put for a while in slaked lime (mixture made with ½ cup of quicklime per liter of water), a necessary step for the sweet to have the desired texture.

The slow cooking of the fruit is done with water and brown or piloncillo sugar until it caramelizes, also adding cloves. In Tabasco they cover the preparation with fig leaves for cooking.

10. Handmade chocolates

Tabasco is the leading state in Mexican cocoa production with more than 65% of the total volume, being decisive for Mexico to rank eighth in the world among producing countries.

Cocoa was used in Tabasco, first by the Olmecs and later by the Mayans, to prepare a highly energizing bitter drink that began to be sweetened with sugar after the conquest.

The main Tabasco cocoa farms, such as Finca Cholula, Hacienda de la Luz and Hacienda Jesús María, have been integrated into the Tabasco Chocolate Route, offering tours of their plantations and benefit and processing sites, as well as tasting exquisite chocolates. handmade.

The tours include walks among cacao plantations that are among cedar, ceiba, achiote, pepper, orange, soursop, sapodilla and pan de sopa trees, which provide the shade that cacao needs to prosper.

Typical Tabasco desserts: yucca pancakes

Cassava pancakes and torrejitas are other popular and cheap Tabasco desserts and snacks. To prepare a good quantity of pancakes, a kilo of yucca, a cup of milk, 2 eggs, oil and sugar and salt to taste are used.

The cassava is shelled and ground and sugar, milk, slightly beaten eggs and salt are added. The ingredients are mixed to make a dough that is left to rest for 15 minutes.

Portions of dough are taken with a soup spoon making pancakes to fry in oil, browning them on both sides. Drain on absorbent paper and are ready to eat.

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See also:

  • Meet the 14 typical dishes of Tabasco that you must try
  • Also learn more about the 10 typical Tabasco drinks that you should try
  • See our guide with the 14 best non-alcoholic typical Mexican drinks


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