The state of Baja California Sur (BCS) has a gastronomy that stands out for its fresh fruits from the Sea of ​​Cortez and the Pacific, served in meat dishes and other local products, which make an exquisite combination.

Next you will know what is the typical dish of Baja California Sur, which you should not miss during your visit to the great Mexican peninsula.

1. Imperial shrimp fillet

South Californian delicacy consisting of precooked shrimp wrapped in bacon and finished cooking on the grill. A coriander-based dressing gives it an exquisite flavor.

Ingredients for the main dish

  • kitchen chopsticks
  • ¾ kilo of bacon.
  • 2 sprigs of chopped parsley.
  • Pepper and oregano to taste.
  • 2 butter spoons.
  • ½ kilo of peeled, clean and cooked shrimp.
  • A green bell pepper cut into strips.
  • ½ kilo of cheddar cheese or similar, cut into strips.
  • 3 green onion stalks, sliced.

Ingredients for the cilantro dressing

  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • A clove of minced garlic.
  • A bunch of chopped fresh coriander.
  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
  • A cup of extra virgin olive oil.
  • A tablespoon of powdered chicken consommé.
  • The juice of a fresh and freshly squeezed lemon.


  • Mix the dressing ingredients and set aside.
  • Cut the cooked shrimp carefully from the ventral part and open them in a butterfly, adding pepper and oregano to taste.
  • Place a strip of cheese the size of the crustacean in the center of the shrimp, close it and wrap it with a thin strip of bacon, leaving the tail free and securing with a kitchen toothpick.
  • Heat the butter on a griddle and add the green onion, bell pepper, shrimp and parsley.
  • Let the bacon brown on its sides and remove the shrimp from the heat.
  • Put the shrimp on absorbent paper to remove excess fat.
  • Salsea with the cilantro dressing and eat with white rice, tortillas and a green salad.

2. Beef machaca burritos

The beef machaca is typical of northern Mexico, including the Baja California peninsula.

It is a salty meat, dried in the sun and crushed with a stone, prepared since colonial times when the Spanish conquerors and missionaries arrived in the territory with cattle. This is how the meat was preserved for seasons in a time without refrigeration.

The most common way to prepare machaca is in a stew, alone or scrambled with eggs, adding chili, onion, tomato and other seasonings.


  • Oil.
  • 8 guajillo chilies.
  • 10 large tortillas.
  • Grated grill cheese.
  • A clove of minced garlic.
  • 300 grams of beef machaca.
  • 100 grams of chopped onion.
  • 100 grams of chopped tomato.
  • Half a teaspoon of oregano.
  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
  • A cup of beans without broth.
  • Salt, cumin and pepper to taste.


  • Devein and remove the seeds from the chiles and bring them to a boil.
  • Remove from the heat and when they are lukewarm, blend them with a little of the cooking water, adding the garlic and apple cider vinegar and seasoning to taste.
  • Heat the machaca in a skillet over low heat with a little oil; add the onion, oregano, a pinch of cumin and stir.
  • Add the chili sauce and the beans and continue stirring, finally adding the tomato.
  • Heat the tortillas on both sides in a comal, fill them with the stewed machaca, put grated cheese on them and wrap them to eat as burritos.

3. Lobster in butter

Lobster in butter prepared in Baja California Sur is considered a gourmet dish, being one of the stars of BCS gastronomy, an exclusive and high-cost recipe for the delicate meat of the crustacean.


  • 2 cloves of garlic.
  • 4 fresh lobsters.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • 2 butter spoons.


  • Wash the lobsters well, dry them and cut them in half from the head to the tail, removing the viscera and extracting the white meat.
  • Chop the meat and salt and pepper it, without overdoing it.
  • Melt the butter in a very hot skillet.
  • Add the garlic and leave it so that the butter absorbs its flavor. Remove them at the end.
  • Add the lobster pieces and cook for 3 minutes on each side. When the meat goes from translucent to opaque, it means that it is ready.
  • Serve it garnished with grated carrot and a few sprigs of parsley and accompany it with mashed potatoes, white rice or a salad, plus a good white wine.

4. Baja California Sur style beef birria

Birria is a typical dish from Baja California Sur and Mexico prepared with lamb and goat, in the center and south of the country. In the north it is also made with beef.

Apart from the meat, in BCS it has a lot of chili, so it is a very spicy meal, ideal to accompany with beer and fresh water.


  • Water.
  • 2 bay leaves.
  • 3 guajillo chilies.
  • 3 morita chilies.
  • 2 wide chilies.
  • 4 cloves of garlic.
  • Salt and oregano to taste.
  • A kilo of beef brisket.
  • 10 grains of fat pepper.


  • You should roast the chiles on the griddle, turning them with tongs until they are toasted. Remove the tail, the seeds and the veins.
  • Blend the chilies with the garlic cloves and allspice in a little water, adding salt and oregano to taste.
  • Spread the pieces of meat with the content of the smoothie, bathing them with the rest.
  • Cover and place in the refrigerator to marinate overnight.
  • Put 2 cups of water and the bay leaves in a steamer.
  • Place the meat in the steamer pot without touching the water.
  • Cover and cook over low heat until meat softens (perhaps 3 hours). Add more water if necessary.
  • Serve in a deep dish adding part of the juice released by the meat.
  • If you wish, add lemon juice and accompany with julienned white onion, chopped cilantro and freshly made corn tortillas.

5. Machaca de manta ray

The South Californians use the manta ray to make a machaca that they prepare more often than the beef one.

It emerged in the days when the drought was scarce and beef became more expensive. The peninsulars did not want to deprive themselves of their traditional machaca, although in this case the meat is crumbled with the hands and not by pounding with a stone or other forceful object.


  • Oil.
  • A liter of water.
  • 2 cloves of garlic.
  • 3 bay leaves.
  • ¼ onion (whole).
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • ½ onion finely chopped.
  • A finely chopped tomato.
  • A finely chopped serrano chili.
  • ½ kilo of fresh manta ray fillets (can also be made with dried fish).


  • Put the manta ray fillets in a saucepan with boiling water and add the piece of onion, the bay leaves and enough salt to make the fish salty.
  • After 10 minutes of boiling, remove from heat, rest the fillets, drain and squeeze carefully to remove excess water.
  • Once the fish is as dry as possible, shred it and set it aside.
  • Fry the garlic, onion, chili and chopped tomato, seasoning with pepper.
  • Add the crumbled stingray to the pan, stir for a few minutes so that the flavors are integrated and turn off the heat.
  • Serve with beans or eat the manta ray machaca in tacos or burritos, dressing with the sauce of your choice.

6. La Paz style fish tacos

The typical food of Baja California Sur is full of fish dishes in all recipes, including ceviches, grilled fish, wallpaper, jerked and in tacos.

The following recipe for fish tacos is traditional from the city of La Paz, capital of the state of BCS.


  • Oil.
  • 2 eggs.
  • 6 fresh lemons.
  • A liter of beer.
  • 2 grated carrots.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • ¼ white cabbage grated.
  • 260 grams of wheat flour.
  • A kilo of fresh fish fillets.
  • Enough tortillas (approximately one kilo).


  • Cut the fillets into squares, salt and pepper them and reserve them.
  • Put the flour, beer and eggs in a bowl, season with salt and pepper and beat with a balloon. Let the preparation rest in the refrigerator for an hour.
  • Beat again and introduce the fish cubes.
  • Fry the fish in very hot oil until it turns a light golden color.
  • Put it on absorbent paper to remove excess fat.
  • Heat the tortillas and prepare the tacos with the fish, adding grated cabbage and carrots, lemon juice and a sauce of your choice.

7. Baked chocolate clams

Tatemar is a verb donated to Spanish by the Nahua language whose voice “tlatemati” means: “to roast in the fire”.

In Mexico, the pre-Columbian roast on a comal became popular, another nahualism coming from the term “comalli”, although the most authentic way of grilling clams dispenses with this pre-Hispanic cooking container.

The chocolate clam is a typical mollusk from Baja California Sur, larger than the common bivalve and with an exterior color similar to chocolate.

It is prepared in different ways (boiled, roasted, pickled) and is a gastronomic symbol of the South Californian Magic Town of Loreto, where it is held at the beginning of June at the Chocolata Clam Festival.


  • Taco tortillas.
  • A good amount of freshly caught chocolate clams.
  • A sauce based on mayonnaise, mustard, oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.


  • Catch the chocolate clams or buy them at the market.
  • Spread a layer of shells and gravel on the sand of the beach (be careful that the waves do not ruin the experience).
  • Fit the clams upside down so they are as firm as possible.
  • Place chamiza and twigs on top of the clams and light a fire against the wind to promote slower cooking.
  • Heat the tortillas by placing them near the campfire.
  • Dig up the clams, remove the meat and prepare the tacos dressing with the mayonnaise and mustard sauce or with another of your choice.

8. South Californian tamales

The tamale is part of the culinary art of Baja California Sur with the same intensity as in all of Mexico, with the distinctive touches that the regions give to this national dish.

In December, the festival “El tamale said to the pot” is held in Cabo San Lucas, an event to rescue and promote the most authentic way of eating South Californian tamales.

Below is the recipe for one of these tamales that are so popular in BCS.


  • Salt.
  • A cup of beef broth.
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic.
  • 4 whole garlic cloves
  • 9 cups of corn flour.
  • 3 cups of lard.
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.
  • 2 tablespoons of wheat flour.
  • 2 kilos of sirloin steak or beef tenderloin.
  • A teaspoon of white vinegar.
  • 4 ancho chili peppers without seeds and deveined.
  • A teaspoon of cumin seeds.
  • A teaspoon of crushed tree chili.
  • 2 teaspoons of chopped fresh oregano.
  • 3 packages of corn husks for tamales.


  • Boil the meat with the whole garlic cloves over high heat and reduce the flame when it breaks the boil, cooking it until it is soft to shred.
  • Put the corn husks in a large saucepan and let them soak in hot water for the cooking time of the meat. If necessary, put a heavy object on top of them.
  • Extract the meat, strain the broth, reserve 5 cups and discard the garlic.
  • When the meat is rested, shred it finely with the help of 2 forks.
  • Toast the ancho chiles over medium heat in a comal or skillet, grinding them in a molcajete or in a food processor when cool.
  • Heat the oil over medium heat in a large saucepan, add the wheat flour and let it brown slightly, adding the broth and mixing to break up the lumps.
  • Add the ground ancho chili, minced garlic, oregano, cumin, crushed tree chili and vinegar.
  • Mix well, add salt to taste and add the shredded meat. Cover and cook for 45 minutes over low heat.
  • Put the lard and a tablespoon of salt in a large bowl and beat on high speed until fluffy.
  • Add the corn flour and beat at low speed until integrated. Gradually add the 5 cups of broth, continuing to beat until a smooth dough forms.
  • Drain the corn husks well, put 2 tablespoons of dough in each one, spread them out and place a tablespoon of stew in the center.
  • Fold the corn husk over the filling, then close the sides. Tie the tamale with thin strips of corn husks, but without overtightening.
  • Boil enough water in a steamer pot and place the tamales vertically on the rack.
  • Cover and steam until the dough can be easily separated from the sheet (about an hour).

9. Capirotada style Baja California Sur

The capirotada is a popular sweet in central and northern states of Mexico, consisting of bread with nuts, peanuts, raisins, bananas, guava and cheese, sweetened with piloncillo.

Any bread is used, especially the rolls that are left over and harden.


  • Oil.
  • 2 cups of water.
  • ¼ cup of walnuts.
  • A slice of cinnamon.
  • ¼ cup of raisins.
  • 4 sliced ​​rolls.
  • 2 piloncillo cones.
  • ¼ cup of banana flakes.
  • ¼ cup of shelled peanuts.
  • A cup of crumbled aged cheese.


  • Boil 2 cups of water with the piloncillo and the cinnamon stick until it forms a slightly thick syrup.
  • Fry the slices of bread until golden brown, placing them on absorbent paper to remove excess fat.
  • Place a layer of bread on a plate and distribute raisins, nuts, peanuts, banana chips and cheese.
  • Put a second layer of bread and repeat the previous operation until you finish with the slices of bolillos and other ingredients.
  • Bathe the preparation with the piloncillo syrup and put it in a water bath until the bread softens (approximately half an hour).

10. Lion’s claw clam tripe ceviche

The lion’s claw or lion’s hand clam occurs in several South Californian lagoons and is the basis for a delicious typical dish from Baja California Sur, considered a delicacy for its texture and flavor.

It is the largest species of the family and its shape is circular, reaching 7.5 cm in diameter. It gets its name from the striae on its shell resembling a lion’s hand.


  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • 2 tablespoons of tequila.
  • 10 green olives without seeds.
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil.
  • 3 cups of pickled baby corn.
  • One kilo of lion claw clam tripe.
  • 4 tablespoons finely chopped onion.
  • One cup of bitter orange juice (a mixture of ¾ cup of sweet orange juice and ¼ cup of lemon juice can be substituted).
  • A roasted poblano pepper, peeled, deveined and seeded.


  • Thinly slice the clam tripe.
  • Add salt and pepper to the sour orange juice and marinate the tripe for 2 hours.
  • Blend the poblano pepper with the tequila, the oil and the olives, until you get a smooth and thick sauce.
  • Add the chopped onion, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Drain the sliced ​​tripe and distribute them in individual crescent-shaped plates, dressing with the poblano pepper sauce and garnishing with pickled baby corn.

11. Chimangos

Popular South Californian dessert based on wheat flour and piloncillo, which is usually eaten with a cup of coffee or tea. However, there are those who fill it with cheese and beans to give it more formality.


  • 3 cups of water.
  • 2 cinnamon sticks.
  • A kilo of wheat flour.
  • A small bucket of piloncillo.
  • A tablespoon of lard.
  • A tablespoon of baking powder (Royal).


  • Boil the 3 cups of water with the piloncillo cube and the cinnamon, which will be the mixture to sweeten the dough.
  • Put the wheat flour, the lard and the Royal powder, in a large bowl and knead until the ingredients are integrated.
  • Continue kneading while gradually adding the warm piloncillo mixture, just as much as needed to make the dough more manageable.
  • Stop kneading when the dough is ready (it doesn’t stick to your hands and it doesn’t cut when you stretch it).
  • Cover a flat base with a film of flour and spread the dough with the help of a rolling pin until it is one centimeter thick.
  • Make cross and cross cuts in the dough with a smooth knife to form squares or diamonds.
  • Fry the portions of dough on both sides and let cool.
  • Eat the chimangos ranch style, with a talega coffee or herbal tea.

12. Damiana liqueur

Liquor of pre-Hispanic heritage whose elaboration dates back to the time in which the aborigines of the Guaycurá ethnic group populated the Baja California peninsula.

It is prepared with damiana, a silver also called “Mexican tea”, “herb of the shepherdess”, “male shirt breaker” and “oreganillo”, which grows in the arid zones of America, from California to Brazil.

It has a beautiful yellow bloom and grows wild on the Baja California peninsula.

The liqueur is made by blending damiana extracts with sugar cane brandy and has a sweet flavor with herbal and refreshing notes.

The drink contains abundant flavonoids and antioxidants and is credited with antidepressant, relaxing, and aphrodisiac properties. It is taken alone, with ice and in cocktails, and is the basis for making a cream that is famous as an excellent digestive.

Typical dish of Baja California Sur: date bread

The date palm tree was brought to the New World by the Spanish and adapted very well to the Baja California peninsula, since it is a species of desert regions known in Asia as “desert bread”.

The South Californian town of Mulegé is surrounded by date palms. Its bakers prepare an exquisite bread that has the intense and natural sweetness of the fruit with the pulp of the date, a food rich in carbohydrates and fiber to which toning properties are also attributed.

Where is the state of Baja California Sur located?

The state of Baja California Sur is in northwestern Mexico, in the south of the long peninsula of Baja California. It limits to the north with the state of Baja California with which it shares the peninsula; to the east with the Gulf of California or Sea of ​​Cortez and to the west and south with the Pacific Ocean.

Do you know the gastronomy of BCS? Do you think these are their most representative dishes? Share the article so that your friends can also choose the typical Baja California Sur dish that they like the most.


See also:

  • Click to know the 12 tourist places in Baja California Sur that you have to visit
  • We leave you our guide on the 15 best things to do in Baja California Sur
  • Find in our guide the 15 best things to do and see in Baja California Norte

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