Five Mexican-Owned Food Brands We Love

Want to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in ways that really honor Mexican culture? If so, it might be time to part ways with the questionable sombrero and try some traditional foods for Cinco de Mayo instead. Check out these Mexican food brands we simply adore—and hey, we know you’re probably here in search of Cinco de Mayo party food, but there’s nothing stopping you from keeping these stocked year-round.

Dahlia Coffee

Natalia Alcazar, the founder of Dahlia Coffee, fell in with the bustling coffee culture of the Pacific Northwest that she grew up in—so much so, that she made the bold decision in 2022 to leave her corporate job behind and start a coffee roasting business. Wanting to carve a space for Latino representation and authentic Mexican food brands in the coffee industry, she created Dahlia Coffee, an homage to Mexico’s national flower. Her coffee derives from specific regions across the Americas (like Chiapas, Mexico, and Antioquia, Colombia), and every batch is packaged with a story inspired by the coffee bean’s roots. 

HERNÁN

Isela Hernandez, founder of HERNÁN, grew up in Del Rio, Texas, a small town on the U.S.-Mexico border, only minutes away from Cuidad Acuña, Coahuila. After a successful career in NYC’s fashion industry, she pursued her lifelong dream of starting a business to promote traditional Mexican cuisine with a modern twist. Her company HERNÁN sells premium Mexican culinary products that range from kitchenware to specialty foods. All of their products come from artisans and producers in Mexico, many of which have never sold beyond their local communities before. We love their Mexican hot chocolate (pictured above), made with organic cacao from a plantation in Chiapas. They come in chocolate “tablillas,” or tablet squares that you melt in water or milk. Isela continues to reinvest profits in a foundation in her hometown of Del Rio. She’s earned several awards from the U.S. Specialty Food Association and even recognition from the U.S. State Department for her work with producers in Mexico. If that’s not queen energy, we simply don’t know what is.

Nemi Snacks

“I remember going into the ‘ethnic aisle’ and feeling lost,” writes Regina Trillo, founder of Nemi Snacks. “I didn’t see anything that portrayed the Mexico I knew. There were rows of old school ‘Mexican’ brands—sometimes U.S.-owned—rooted in clichés of food and culture.” She envisioned Nemi Snacks as a brand that makes creative and authentic Mexican snacks that break the stereotypical mold. Take, for example, their Chile Turmeric Cactus Sticks, which blend guajillo and red chiles with Mexican oregano and spices to create something unique, even among Mexican food brands. These make a perfect party food for Cinco de Mayo, especially if you already like to throw Takis in a big bowl and call it a day. Nemi Snacks partners with small independent Mexican farmers and, per Regina’s mission, is dedicated to elevating women of color into male-dominated roles. 

Hot Mama Salsa

Founder Nikki Guerrero has always been a fanatic about fresh chili peppers and hand-produced salsa. When she moved to Portland and searched for the bold Mexican flavors she grew up with, she found the market for fresh, authentic salsa to be seriously lacking. She started her business with only three flavors, the very first one (still the bestseller today) copied from her family recipe, Gramal’s Chili—a traditional Mexican-style table salsa with stewed jalapeños, tomatoes, cilantro, garlic, and onions. Today, Hot Mama Salsa sells more than just salsa; they also make chili oil and hot sauce sourced from specific chiles from different regions, all while using local farmers to do it. If you’re trying to find traditional foods for Cinco de Mayo, put the Pace away and order some Hot Mama Salsa.

Chuza

Daniel Schwartz was born in Monterrey, Mexico, where spicy food was an essential part of his daily life before he moved to the states. “Chuza” means to hit a strike or, in this context, achieve something great—which is exactly what Danny did in 2020, when he created a brand of spicy dried fruit snacks infused with the flavors and flair of his favorite childhood food. Chuza’s spicy dried fruit snacks include mango, apricot, pineapple, strawberry, and cranberry. They also sell their own line of chili seasoning. Fun fact: Chuza is also the name of the beloved owl that would visit them every day when they were first forming the company, who they now refer to as the Chuza’s COWL-founder. What a hoot! 

Other Mexican food brands we love: SOMOS, Juanita’s Foods, Guelagetza, Siete Family Foods, Tia Lupita Foods


About the Author

Ariana Losch

Ariana Losch is a Sporked contributor, webcomic writer, java junkie, and bad TV enthusiast. She only ever feels at peace laying out on a beach like a kebab, roasting in the sun; sadly, she can never move back to Florida, her home state, because there simply isn’t enough good Mediterranean food. You can find her overstaying her welcome at just about every LA coffee shop, working on a screenplay and avoiding all eye contact. (She is embarrassed to be there, please leave her alone.)