How much do you know about garnachas?

Garnachas are something so deeply rooted in the culture and daily life here that there can be no calling yourself Mexican without possessing solid knowledge on the subject. For non-Mexicans, garnachas are any number of foods based around a corn tortilla, most often sold at street stalls. No local would confuse a taco with a quesadilla or chilaquiles with enchiladas; however, when practical issues are transferred to the theoretical plane, some questions are not so simple to answer. Here are a few for you… let’s see if you can solve them.

Do quesadillas always have cheese or not?

quesadillas tacos garnachas

For those who say yes – why can you order a picadillo or mushroom quesadilla without cheese? For those who say no – then why is it called a quesadilla?

Name 5 garnachas that don’t start with T

huarache garnachas

Easy: huarache, memela, sope, quesadilla, itacate…. anything else?

What’s the difference between a taco and a quesadilla?

tacos garnachas
Photo: ©Los Muertos Crew via

Best to go straight to Yeicko Sunner’s thoughts on this subject with an entire article.

What about tamales, chilaquiles, and their respective tortas – are they considered garnachas?

torta de chilaquiles catakil garnachas
Photo: Catakil

Garnacha refers to a “thick corn tortilla with a raised edge, with (chili) sauce and other ingredients (beans, cheese, cream, sometimes minced or shredded meat)” according to the Dictionary of Mexicanisms. So is there any debate? Are they garnachas until the bread is added?

Are garnachas only sold on the street or can you find them in restaurants?

taco pujol garnachas
Photo: Pujol

A real puzzler. Garnachas are usually associated with food sold on the street; that is, when we think of garnachas, we usually think of eating them at street stalls. So, if a huarache, for example, is prepared and consumed in a restaurant, somewhere like Azul Histórico or Pujol, does it cease to be a garnacha and become just a huarache?

What is the difference between a flauta and a taco dorado (golden taco)?

tacos dorados garnachas
Photo: Cocina Vital

In principle, the tortilla used for flautas is larger and longer, but some people serve flautas that look like tacos. If the flautas are bathed in sauce, the difference may be more obvious. It may come down to the fact that when flautas look like tacos, it is because they are not properly prepared. It’s a bit similar to the discussion over sopes and memelas, which can look identical. Dulce Fabiola explains in this article.

Do you have any other ideas/questions related to this topic? If so, send them our way to: [email protected].

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