Throwing a Cinco de Mayo party this year? There’s so much more to Mexican desserts than just Tres Leches Cake!
Here are more popular Mexican desserts that are worth trying from traditional Chocoflan to creative Cheesecake Quesadillas to easy Dulce de Leche Ice Cream.
I’ve included a number of my favorites here, like Arroz con Leche and Cajeta (Caramel) Empanadas. Yum!
And now… 55 Mexican desserts to try!
¡Get the fiesta started with these Mexican desserts and sweet treats!
1. Tres Leches
Tres leches is a traditional Mexican sponge cake that is soaked in three kinds of milk – evaporated milk, condensed milk, and whole milk.
This cake is also known as dulce de tres leches, pan tres leches, or simply tres leches.
It is a popular dessert in Mexico and is known for its light texture due to the many air bubbles in the sponge cake.
Tres Leches Cake is typically served chilled and can be topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit.
Flan is a popular Mexican dessert that consists of a creamy custard that is typically made with sweetened condensed milk, whole milk, eggs, and vanilla.
The custard is then baked in a water bath until set and topped with a caramel sauce. The caramel sauce is poured into the bottom of the flan mold before adding the custard.
Once the flan is baked and has cooled, it is inverted onto a serving plate so that the caramel sauce is on top. Flan is often served chilled.
Churros are a traditional Mexican dessert that consists of a fried dough pastry.
They are typically long and thin with a ridged surface that is created by piping the dough through a star-shaped nozzle.
Churros are often dusted with cinnamon sugar and served with a dipping sauce, such as melted chocolate or dulce de leche.
They are a popular street food in Mexico and are often enjoyed for breakfast or as a snack.
4. Cheesecake Quesadillas
Cheesecake Quesadillas (or cheesecakeadillas) are a sweet twist on the classic quesadilla.
This easy recipe involves toasting tortillas and then sprinkling them with cinnamon and sugar.
Cream cheese is then spread between the warm tortillas, so it gets all gooey and melty. The resulting quesadillas are sweet, creamy, and have a slightly crunchy texture from the toasted tortillas.
5. Arroz con Leche
Arroz con Leche is a traditional Mexican dessert that translates to “rice with milk” in English.
It’s a sweet and creamy rice pudding that is made with rice, milk, sugar, and cinnamon.
The rice is cooked in milk until it is tender and then sweetened with sugar and flavored with cinnamon.
Arroz con Leche can be served hot or cold and is often garnished with cinnamon or raisins.
6. Iced Mexican Chocolate
Mexico is the birthplace of chocolate (it’s here that the first cacao plants were found.)
Mexican hot chocolate is a traditional Mexican beverage that is made with milk, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and sugar. This iced version is a decadent treat over ice cubes.
Add vanilla extract, chili powder, or cayenne pepper for a spicy kick. Top with whipped cream for a more festive feel.
Cajeta is a thick and gooey caramel sauce. Cajeta is a popular ingredient in many Mexican desserts, including churros, flan, and tres leches cake. It can also be spooned out of the jar and enjoyed as is.
For a quick & easy dessert treat, spread cajeta on toast or fresh bread. Or top ice cream and fresh fruits with it. My favorite way to eat cajeta is empanadas (the recipe is further below, #10).
Cajeta is made by slowly heating sweetened goat’s milk until it thickens and caramelizes, resulting in a thick and creamy caramel-like sauce.
The name “cajeta” comes from the Spanish word for goat, “cabra”. Cajeta is often used as a spread or filling for cakes, pastries, and other desserts, or as a topping for ice cream.
8. Mexican Chocolate Mousse With Ancho and Orange
This rich and decadent dessert with a spicy twist involves melting Mexican chocolate and whisking it together with egg yolks, sugar, and heavy cream.
The mixture is then flavored with cinnamon, ancho chili powder, and orange zest, which gives it a unique and spicy flavor.
The mousse is then chilled until it is set and served with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder.
9. Dulce de Leche
The primary difference between Cajeta and Dulce de Leche is the type of milk used to make them.
Cajeta is made with goat’s milk, while Dulce de Leche is made with cow’s milk. This difference in milk type gives each of them a slightly different flavor profile.
Cajeta has a tangier and more complex flavor due to the goat’s milk, while Dulce de Leche has a richer and creamier flavor due to the cow’s milk.
The cooking process for Cajeta is also typically longer than that for Dulce de Leche, resulting in a thicker and more caramelized sauce.
10. Cajeta Empanadas
Mexican Cajeta Empanadas are made with a cajeta (a thick and gooey Mexican caramel sauce) and empanada dough. The dough is typically made with flour, sugar, butter, and eggs, and is rolled out into a thin sheet. The cajeta filling is then spooned into the dough, and the pastry is folded over and crimped shut. The empanadas are then baked until golden brown. Yum!
Sopaipillas are a traditional Mexican dessert that consists of a fried pastry made from a simple dough of flour, salt, and baking powder.
The dough is rolled out into circles or squares and then fried until golden brown and puffed up. Sopaipillas are often served drizzled with honey or sprinkled with cinnamon sugar.
They are also sometimes served as a savory dish, topped with cheese or chili.
12. Mexican Fried Ice Cream
Fried ice cream gained prominence in Mexican cuisine when the national chain Chi-Chi’s introduced their signature version made with tortillas and cinnamon.
Why does Mexican ice cream (helado) taste different than American ice cream? Mexican ice cream has less fat and air than American ice cream.
Related: 10 Popular Mexican Ice Creams
Prepare yourself for a burst of tropical flavors with Mangonada, a refreshing Mexican dessert.
This delightful treat combines the sweetness of ripe mangoes with the tanginess of lime juice and a hint of spiciness from Tajin seasoning.
The mangoes are typically blended into a smooth puree and layered with chamoy sauce, a savory-sweet condiment made from pickled fruit.
To add a touch of crunch, it’s common to include chunks of fresh mango and top it off with a sprinkle of Tajin seasoning.
14. Easy Dulce de Leche Ice Cream
This dulce de leche ice cream recipe requires only three ingredients and less than ten minutes of active hands-on time to mix everything together.
You’ll need heavy cream, sweetened condensed milk, and dulce de leche. Kick it up a notch with pumpkin or cinnamon.
The recipe involves whisking the heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks, and then gently folding in the sweetened condensed milk and dulce de leche.
15. Pastel de Elote
Pastel de Elote is a traditional Mexican dessert that is made with fresh sweet corn kernels, sugar, flour, butter, eggs, and milk.
The ingredients are blended together until smooth and then baked in the oven until golden brown.
16. Pueblan Molletes
Pueblan molletes are a dome-shaped dessert bread filled with a coconut cream, and topped with a pumpkin seed glaze.
Pueblan molletes are unique to the city of Puebla in Mexico, they are often served with a sprinkling of powdered sugar on top.
Fun fact: Cinco de Mayo celebrates Mexico’s victory over invading French forces at the Battle of Puebla in 1862.
17. Chocoflan Imposible Cake
Chocoflan Impossible Cake combines the flavors of chocolate cake and flan.
The recipe involves layering a rich chocolate cake batter on top of a creamy flan mixture and baking it until it is set.
The resulting cake has a beautiful two-layered appearance and is topped with a drizzle of cajeta caramel sauce made with goat milk.
18. Margarita Cake
This fun Margarita cake recipe is flavored with lime and tequila, making it a moist and tender layer cake.
This creative recipe involves making a lime cake batter and adding tequila to the mix. The batter is then divided between three cake pans and baked until golden brown. Once the cakes have cooled, they are layered with a tequila-lime buttercream frosting.
The frosting is made with butter, powdered sugar, lime juice, and tequila, and is beaten until light and fluffy.
The cake is then decorated with lime slices and a sprinkle of sea salt to give it a margarita-inspired look. The resulting cake is a perfect dessert for any Cinco de Mayo celebration or summer party.
19. 3-Ingredient Mexican Cocadas
This easy Mexican cocadas recipe involves mixing shredded coconut flakes with sweetened condensed milk and vanilla extract to create a thick dough.
The dough is then shaped into small balls and baked until golden brown. The resulting candies are sweet, chewy, and have a caramel-like flavor from the condensed milk.
The recipe is simple and requires only three ingredients, making it easy to prepare at home. Add nuts and chocolate chips for more flavor and texture.
Cocadas are a popular dessert in Mexico and many other parts of Latin America.
20. Camote Enmielado
Camotes are a traditional Mexican dessert that will satisfy your sweet tooth with their delightful simplicity.
These sweet potato candies are made by cooking sweet potatoes until they become soft and tender.
The sweet potatoes are then mashed and mixed with sugar, cinnamon, and sometimes nutmeg or other spices.
The mixture is shaped into small cylinders or balls and dusted with powdered sugar.
21. Mexican Wedding Cookies
Mexican Wedding Cookies (also known as “snowballs”, Polvorones, Russian Tea Cookies, or Pecan Sandies) are a buttery pecan shortbread cookie ball that’s coated in soft powdered sugar.
They’re easy to make and perfect a Mexican flag themed spread, just add a green and a red dessert!
Nicuatole is a unique and ancient Mexican dessert that originated from the Aztec civilization.
This traditional corn-based treat is made by cooking a mixture of ground maize, sugar, milk, and cinnamon until it thickens and sets into a pudding-like consistency.
It is then cut into squares or diamond shapes and dusted with cinnamon for an extra touch of flavor.
Jericallas are a delightful Mexican custard dessert that will captivate your taste buds with their creamy goodness.
These individual-sized custards are made by combining ingredients such as eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla, and sometimes a touch of cinnamon.
The mixture is then baked until it forms a golden-brown crust on top and a smooth and velvety texture inside.
24. Sopaipilla Cheesecake Bars
Sopapilla Cheesecake Bars, a dessert inspired by the Mexican dessert called sopapillas.
The recipe involves layering a sweet, creamy cheesecake filling between two sheets of crescent roll pastry dough, which is then topped with butter, cinnamon, and sugar and drizzled with honey.
The resulting bars are sweet, rich, and have a slightly flaky texture from the pastry dough.
25. Dulces de Tamarindo
This Mexican dessert recipe involves mixing tamarind paste with sugar and water to create a thick and sticky candy mixture.
The mixture is then rolled into small balls and coated in more sugar or chili-lime seasoning for an added kick.
Marquesitas are a street food dessert from the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.
These thin and crispy treats are made from a batter that consists of flour, egg, and sugar, which is cooked on a special marquesita iron until it becomes crispy and golden.
Once cooked, the marquesitas are rolled up and filled with a variety of sweet fillings, such as Nutella, caramel, jam, or cheese.
Bionicos are a refreshing and nutritious fruit dessert that originated in Guadalajara, Mexico.
This vibrant dish typically consists of a mix of fresh fruits, such as strawberries, bananas, papaya, and melon, topped with yogurt, granola, shredded coconut, and drizzled with a sweet sauce made from condensed milk.
The combination of sweet and tangy fruits, creamy yogurt, and crunchy granola creates a harmonious medley of flavors and textures.
28. Chongos Zamoranos
Chongos zamoranos is a traditional dessert from the Mexican city of Zamora, Michoacán. It is made with curdled milk and sugar, and flavored with cinnamon and vanilla.
The milk used to make this dessert is typically goat milk, which gives it a unique tangy flavor. The milk is heated until it curdles, and then the curds are separated from the whey.
The curds are then mixed with sugar and spices and cooked until they form a thick, creamy mixture. Chongos zamoranos is often served cold and garnished with nuts or fruit.
29. Carlota de Limón
Carlota de limón is a Mexican dessert made with layers of cookies and a creamy mixture of condensed milk, lime juice, and whipped cream.
The cookies used in this dessert are typically Maria cookies, which are thin, crisp, and slightly sweet. The creamy mixture is made by combining condensed milk, lime juice, and whipped cream.
The layers of cookies and cream are assembled in a loaf pan and then refrigerated until set.
Obleas are thin, crispy wafers made from flour, sugar, and butter. They are often filled with sweet toppings like cajeta (caramel) or chocolate.
Obleas are a popular street food in Mexico and are often sold by street vendors. The wafers are made by combining flour, sugar, and butter and then rolling the dough out thin.
The dough is then cut into circles and baked until crispy. The crispy wafers are then filled with sweet toppings like caramel, chocolate, or jam.
Capirotada is a traditional Mexican bread pudding made with slices of bread, cheese, raisins, and a syrup made from piloncillo (unrefined cane sugar).
The bread used in capirotada is typically a type of sweet bread called bolillo, which is similar to a French baguette. The bread is sliced and then layered with cheese, raisins, and the piloncillo syrup.
The layers are then baked until the bread is crispy and the cheese is melted. Capirotada is a popular dessert during Lent and is often served during the Semana Santa (Holy Week) celebrations.
Raspados are a type of Mexican shaved ice dessert.
They are usually flavored with fruit syrups and topped with condensed milk or fresh fruit. Raspados are similar to snow cones, but they are typically made with a finer ice and more flavorful syrups.
The ice is shaved using a special machine and then topped with the fruit syrup and other toppings.
33. Caballeros Pobres
Caballeros pobres, which translates to “poor knights,” is a traditional Mexican dessert similar to French toast.
It is made by dipping slices of bread in a mixture of eggs, milk, and sugar and then frying them until golden brown.
The fried bread is then topped with a syrup made from piloncillo (unrefined cane sugar) and cinnamon.
Garapiñados are a sweet Mexican treat made from nuts (usually peanuts or almonds) that are coated in a hard, sugary shell.
The nuts are boiled in a mixture of sugar and water until the sugar crystallizes and forms a hard coating around the nuts.
35. Leche Quemada
Leche quemada, which translates to “burnt milk,” is a type of Mexican dessert treat made from caramelized milk and sugar. The milk and sugar are cooked together until they caramelize and turn a dark brown color.
The mixture is then poured into molds and allowed to cool and harden. Leche quemada has a rich, caramel flavor and a creamy texture.
Campechanas are a type of Mexican pastry that is similar to a croissant. They are made by layering dough with butter and then folding and rolling the dough several times to create a flaky texture.
The pastry is then baked until golden brown and crispy. Campechanas can be filled with sweet or savory fillings and are often dusted with powdered sugar.
Merengues are a type of Mexican cookie made from whipped egg whites and sugar. The cookies are crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.
They are often flavored with vanilla or other extracts and can be tinted with food coloring. Merengues are a popular treat in Mexico and are often served with coffee or tea.
Buñuelos are a Mexican dessert that consists of a fried dough pastry. The dough is made with flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, and cinnamon, and is rolled out into circles or squares before being fried until golden brown.
Buñuelos are often dusted with cinnamon sugar and served with a syrup made from piloncillo (unrefined cane sugar) or honey.
Buñuelos are a popular dessert in Mexican cuisine and are often enjoyed during the Christmas season.
39. Chili Cream Cheese Frosting
This spicy frosting mixes cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and chili powder to create a smooth and tangy frosting with a little bit of heat.
This Cinco de Chili frosting is perfect for topping cupcakes or cakes for those who enjoy a little bit of kick in their desserts!
40. Mexican Hot Chocolate Balls
Piedras de chocolate, which translates continue to “chocolate rocks,” are a type of Mexican candy made from chocolate and nuts.
The chocolate is melted and mixed with chopped nuts (usually peanuts or almonds) and then dropped by spoonfuls onto a sheet of wax paper.
The candy hardens as it cools and forms irregularly shaped “rocks.”
Gansitos are a type of Mexican snack cake made from chocolate cake, strawberry filling, and marshmallow topping.
The cake is shaped like a small, round sandwich and is coated in chocolate. The filling is made from strawberry jam or jelly, and the marshmallow topping is swirled on top.
Marranitos, also known as Mexican Gingerbread Pigs, are cherished treats often found in Mexican bakeries.
These pig-shaped sweet breads are flavored with molasses, giving them a unique and delightful spicy-brown taste.
Best enjoyed alongside a cup of coffee or hot chocolate, marranitos have become one of the most beloved Mexican sweet breads.
Orejas, also known as pan dulce, panderas, or palmiers, are a popular sweet treat found in Mexican panaderías (bakeries).
These flaky pastries are made from puff pastry and sprinkled with a mixture of sugar and cinnamon, which gives them their distinct taste.
Their name, which translates to “ears” in Spanish, comes from their shape, which resembles an ear. Orejas are crispy, flaky, and sweet.
Yoyos hold a special place in Mexican culture as a traditional toy enjoyed by both children and adults. Originating in the 1920s, yoyos have remained popular over the years.
They are wooden toys that can be skillfully manipulated to perform various tricks. In Mexico, yoyos are often associated with other sweet creations like marianas.
Paletas are frozen Mexican desserts that combine the best of ice cream and popsicles.
These treats are made with fresh natural fruits or rich creamy ingredients, offering a wide range of flavors and toppings.
Some popular paleta flavors include coconut, passion fruit with condensed milk, dulce de leche, banana with Nutella, lime, and pineapple.
Conchas are a popular type of pan dulce (or Mexican sweet bread) that’s commonly sold in panaderias (or bakeries) across the U.S. and Mexico.
The word ‘concha’ translates to ‘shell’ in English, which describes their fun seashell-like appearance.
Conchas get their name from their round shape and their striped, seashell-like appearance.
47. Gelatina de Fresa
Gelatina de Fresa (strawberry jello) is a beloved and popular dessert in Mexico.
This silky dessert is a staple in many different celebrations, such as birthdays, weddings, and graduations.
Gelatinas, or jellos can be elevated into an art form with layers of different flavors.
48. Buñuelos de Viento
Buñuelos de Viento, also known as wind fritters or mold-shaped fritters, are a popular dessert in Mexican and other Latin-American countries.
They are especially popular during the Christmas season and can also be enjoyed for Cinco de Mayo or a weeknight dinner.
These crispy, airy fritters are covered in sugar and can be topped with piloncillo syrup. They are made with a rosette and are very easy to make at home.
49. Fresas Con Crema
Fresas con Crema, or strawberries with cream, is a refreshing and light dessert that is perfect for the warm weather in Mexico during the holiday season.
Fresh strawberries are combined with whipped cream and sometimes a little bit of sugar to create this delicious treat.
This dessert is a favorite among children and adults alike and is often served at Christmas dinners and celebrations.
Mazapan is a Mexican sweet treat made from ground peanuts and sugar. The peanuts are ground into a fine powder and then mixed with sugar and sometimes flavored with cinnamon or other spices.
The mixture is then shaped into small, round candies. Mazapanes are a popular treat in Mexico and are often sold by street vendors.
51. Champurrado Ice Cream
Champurrado is traditionally a hot, cozy winter beverage in Mexico. This thick and rich beverage is essentially a Mexican hot chocolate with a twist and can be made into an ice cream dessert.
This recipe was developed by latinofoodie.com. It features delicious notes of champurrado: chocolate, cinnamon, piloncillo, masa harina, and cream.
52. Mexican Cinnamon Cookies
Mexican Cinnamon Cookies, a sweet and spicy twist on classic sugar cookies. The recipe involves mixing butter and shortening with sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract to create a smooth cookie dough.
The dough is then flavored with cinnamon and baking powder to give it a unique Mexican-inspired flavor. The cookies are then baked until they are golden brown and crispy on the edges.
53. Mexican Brownies
These fudgy and chocolatey Mexican Brownies have a pop of cayenne and cinnamon flavor.
Mexican Brownies are a twist on the classic chocolate brownie. The recipe involves mixing cocoa powder, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper with sugar, eggs, and butter to create a rich and fudgy brownie batter.
The batter is then baked until it is set and topped with a sprinkle of sea salt for an added touch of flavor.
54. Apple Pie Tacos
Apple Pie Tacos, a healthy and delicious twist on a classic American dessert.
The recipe involves making cinnamon sugar-coated corn tortilla shells and filling them with a spiced vegan apple pie filling made with fresh apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, and maple syrup.
The tacos are then topped with a scoop of dairy-free vanilla ice cream for a creamy and sweet finish.
55. Easy Cheesecake Chimichanges
This easy Mexican dessert recipe involves mixing cream cheese with sugar, vanilla extract, and fresh strawberries to create a rich and creamy filling. The filling is then wrapped in flour tortillas and fried until crispy and golden brown.
The resulting chimichangas are then dusted with cinnamon sugar and served with a dollop of whipped cream for an added touch of sweetness.
The dessert is perfect for serving at parties and Cinco de Mayo celebrations.
Mexican Dessert FAQs
What are some other Mexican dessert ideas?
Some more Mexican desserts include Marranitos, Plátanos Fritos, Horchata Ice Cream, Frito Pie, Pan de Muerto, Hojarascas, Cochinito de piloncillo (Chichimbré), Nieve de Garrafa, Alegrías, and Pay de Queso.
What are Mexican desserts that are eaten during the Christmas season?
Mexican Christmas desserts include sweet tamales, ponche Navideño, rompope, Rosca de Reyes, capirotada, sweet atole variations, sweet empanadas, crystallized fruits, tamarind-based candies, polvorones (Mexican Wedding Cookies), champurrado, arroz con leche, mazapán (marzipan), jericallas, calabaza en tacha (candied pumpkin), camotes (sweet potato candy), obleas con cajeta, and glazed piloncillo pecans.
What are Mexican desserts that are eaten during Easter?
Mexican Easter desserts include capirotada (a bread pudding), torrijas (similar to French toast), empanadas de calabaza (pumpkin turnovers), borrachitos (alcohol-infused candy), gaznates (crispy pastries), mazapán (marzipan), nopalitos de azúcar (cactus-shaped sugar treats), atole (a warm beverage), paletas de tamarindo (tamarind lollipops), dulce de camote (sweet potato candy), buñuelos, tortitas de lentejas (lentil fritters), calabaza en tacha (candied pumpkin), and palanquetas (nut bars).
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