Mexico Travel Guide
Oaxaca Food Tour

Oaxaca food tour and its seven different moles

Rutopía editorial team
Rutopía editorial team
- min read

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Mole is a typical Mexican dish, it is so famous that it even has its own song, La cumbia del mole written by singer and composer Lila Downs. And there is no better way to talk about this ancestral dish than with the couplets of a melody made to celebrate this great discovery of Mexican gastronomy whose main ingredients are: peanuts, bread, almonds, chiles, chocolate and cinnamon, although this is an understatement; if we consider that in Oaxaca alone there are seven different types, which although they are not the only ones, they are the most famous.

The word mole comes from the Nahuatl word mulli, and alludes to the fine ground sauces and smooth texture.  These four letters combined mean not only a good taste, but also the possibility of reuniting with loved ones who have passed away on the Day of the Dead and the opportunity to bring the family together to eat and laugh. Perhaps that is why this dish is a must when thinking about Mexican food.

That said, it would be worthwhile to dedicate a trip just to know it, since there is not only one type of mole, but many. Do you dare to know which ones?



The word mole comes from the Nahuatl word mulli and refers to finely ground sauces with a smooth texture. In addition, mole is the dish that the living and the dead enjoy together once a year. For this reason, mole is an obligatory reference when thinking about Mexican food.

We do a food tour with Rutopia through the state of Oaxaca while enjoying its local cuisine.

Book a trip here.

Oaxaca food tour: Are there more than seven moles of Oaxaca?

There are different classifications, among which is the “7 moles”, created to highlight the varieties found in the central valleys. Now this is not the only way to distinguish them, there are those who classify them according to their degree of complexity, or by ingredients and characteristics in common. As if this were not enough, each type is used in different events and festivities.

An example of this is mole negro and machamanteles, which are associated with weddings and baptisms. In other hand, the preparation of “los chichilos” -a dark sauce, with a light consistency, tortilla tatemada and water that is characterized by its simple and bitter flavors- is related to mourning and mourning funerals.

That said, here is a brief, but very informative selection of what you will taste when you decide to travel with Rutopía.


In any case, to call yourself a connoisseur of Mexican gastronomy, it is essential to try each of these Oaxacan delicacies.

And what better way to do it than traveling with Rutopia.

The seven moles of Oaxaca: Oaxaca food tour

In this Oaxaca food tour, we will explain that given the range of combinations that exist, the most popular method to distinguish a mole is “by name and surname.” These can refer to a region (mole poblano), color (amarillito, coloradito, negro), or event (mole de boda, mole de fiesta.) Some of these prefixes are region-specific or refer to some characteristic.

Traditionally people cook mole with turkey for special occasions (weddings, Day of the Dead). Its characteristic color is due to the shade provided by the toasted chiles and the burnt tortilla. Although the recipe varies from region to region, it is prepared with more than 30 ingredients such as; toasted chiles (black chihuacle, red chilhuacle, mulato, pasilla), tortilla, egg yolk bread, plantain, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts, peanuts, onion, tomato, avocado leaf, cloves, pepper, oregano, chocolate, raisins, cinnamon, salt, and sugar.





Mole amarillo or amarillito

Mole Amarillo is one of the most versatile moles because it can be served with meat or vegetarian options. The result is interesting because it mixes ingredients such as chile ancho, guajillo, chilcostle and yellow costeño, tomato, onion, garlic, cumin, cloves, pepper, tortilla, cilantro, chochoyotes, and hierba Santa. Although people call it yellow, its color is orange, and it gets its name from the yellow chilhuacle chile.



The festive mole coloradito

It is so-called because of the color of the sauce, and it is a thick and sweet mole. The main ingredients are chilcostle, guajillo, yolk bread, chocolate, tomato, garlic, salt, and sugar.



The green mole and its herbal flavor

It is the only mole of Oaxaca in which the ingredients are used fresh and can be made with fish. The broth provides, together with the aromatic herbs, that herbal flavor. Its ingredients are pepitas, tomato, green chile, epazote, parsley, hierba Santa, onion, garlic, cloves, and corn masa.


The unknown mole Chichilo

The mole has a fiery red color, and fruits such as plantain, pineapple, peach, or sweet potato are added. Ingredients include black chihuacle chile, pasilla, mulato, tomato, pepper, cloves, and toasted tortillas (this gives it its color). The combination will cause an explosion of flavor.



The end of the Oaxaca food tour with Red mole

This preparation uses red chilhuacle, ancho chile, sesame, almonds, chocolate, garlic, onion, and epazote. In addition, cookers can add dried shrimp and pumpkin seeds for a better flavor. This mole is famous for being spicy and sweet at the same time since its preparation includes chocolate and banana, but also guajillo and ancho chiles.




We concluded that if we don’t stain our clothes, even a little bit when we eat mole, we don’t live the whole experience.

So don’t miss this Oaxaca food tour! Enjoy! Request your trip here.

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