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How do you eat Mexican churros?

Churros are a popular fried dough pastry that originated in Spain and Portugal but are now enjoyed all over the world, including in Mexico. Mexican churros are often coated in cinnamon and sugar and make a delicious treat. There are many different ways to eat and enjoy Mexican churros.

What are Mexican churros?

Mexican churros are a variation on the traditional Spanish churro. They are made from a dough mixture containing water, flour, and a leavening agent like baking powder. The dough is piped into long strips or loops that are then fried until crisp and golden brown. While frying, the churros puff up, creating their distinctive hollow shape.

After frying, Mexican churros are often rolled in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. The cinnamon sugar coating is part of what gives churros their sweet taste and sticky exterior. Other popular coatings for Mexican churros include simply sugar or a mixture of sugar and ground chile powder for a sweet and spicy kick.

Compared to Spanish churros, Mexican churros tend to be thinner, crispier, and more intensely sweet. They are served straight as a snack or alongside coffee drinks, hot chocolate, and cajeta (a Mexican dulce de leche caramel sauce).

Buying churros from street vendors

One of the most authentic ways to enjoy Mexican churros is to buy them fresh from a street vendor. In Mexico, churro carts can be found around busy areas like parks, plazas, and markets, as well as outside of schools, metro stations, and tourist attractions.

When you go to a churro cart, the churros are usually made to order. You can watch the vendor pipe the dough into the hot oil and then coat the cooked churros in cinnamon sugar. The freshly fried churros are handed over warm, crisp on the outside, and tender on the inside.

Churro carts may offer options like:

  • Plain churros
  • Churros with cajeta or chocolate dipping sauce
  • Churros stuffed with cajeta or chocolate
  • Churros coated in different sugars like vanilla or chocolate

When buying churros from a street vendor, it’s common to eat them right away standing at the cart or while continuing to walk around. The warm, crunchy churros are perfect for snacking on the go.

Dipping churros in sauces

While Mexican churros are delicious on their own, they are often served alongside dipping sauces that add another layer of flavor.

Classic sauces for churros include:

  • Cajeta – This thick, sweet caramel sauce balances the cinnamon sugar with its rich, buttery taste. Cajeta provides a smooth, velvety dip for churros.
  • Chocolate sauce – Either dark chocolate or milk chocolate sauce pairs wonderfully with churros. The combination of chocolate and churros is reminiscent of chocolate covered donuts.
  • Condensed milk – Sweetened condensed milk is a simple dip that allows the cinnamon on the churros to shine.
  • Dulce de leche – Similar to cajeta, this caramelized milk sauce is a classic partner for churros.

When dipping, it’s best to get a generous amount of sauce on your churro. Hold the churro by the ends and dunk the middle in the sauce before taking a bite. The sauce should soak into the interior of the churro a bit.

Drinks to enjoy with churros

Churros pair deliciously with several traditional Mexican drinks including:

  • Abuelita hot chocolate – The chocolatey richness offsets the cinnamon sugar churros wonderfully.
  • Café de olla – This cinnamon infused coffee is an excellent complement.
  • Champurrado – A thick, comforting masa and chocolate based drink.
  • Mexican hot chocolate – Made from tablets of chocolate, sugar, and spices.
  • Horchata – Sweet rice milk punch flavored with cinnamon.

Dunking churros in the drinks allows you to soak up even more sweet flavor from the beverage.

Filled churros

While simple cinnamon sugar churros are delicious, another way to eat them is to look for filled churro options. Some bakeries and vendors offer churros filled with sweet ingredients like:

  • Cajeta or dulce de leche
  • Chocolate sauce or chocolate hazelnut spread
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Fruit jam or jelly
  • Vanilla custard or pudding

The filling is piped into the churro dough before frying. The churro is then dusted with cinnamon sugar as normal. When you bite into a filled churro, the warm filling oozes out deliciously.

Churro ice cream dishes

Churros are also incorporated into ice cream-based desserts in Mexico. Some creative ways to eat churros with ice cream include:

  • Churro sundae – Cinnamon churros on top of ice cream with cajeta, chocolate sauce, and whipped cream.
  • Churro ice cream sandwiches – Ice cream sandwiched between two churros.
  • Fried ice cream with churros – Scoops of ice cream rolled in crushed churros and fried.
  • Churro banana split – Banana slices and ice cream served over crunchy churro pieces.

The warm churros paired with cold ice cream is an unbeatable combination. The churros also add great texture to balance the creaminess of the ice cream.

Churro doughnuts

Churros are sometimes made in fun doughnut shapes instead of just sticks or loops. Round churro doughnuts may be topped with:

  • Cinnamon sugar
  • Chocolate or cajeta drizzle
  • Whipped cream
  • Chopped nuts
  • Sprinkles

Churro doughnuts make it easy to dunk the entire treat in sauces and drinks. Their unique texture also differentiates them from regular doughnuts.

Churro cereal

For a fun and portable way to enjoy churro flavor, you can eat churro cereal. These crunchy puffed wheat cereals are coated in cinnamon and sugar to mimic churros.

Churro cereal can be enjoyed in a bowl with milk just like regular cereal. For added decadence, try it with warm or cold milk mixed with a bit of chocolate or cajeta sauce.

You can also eat churro cereal dry straight from the bag for a satisfying crunch on-the-go. It’s a handy snackable option that lets you enjoy churro taste anywhere.

Churro cookies and cupcakes

The cinnamon sugar flavor of churros translates deliciously into other baked goods like cookies and cupcakes. Some tasty ways to experience churro-inspired treats include:

  • Churro cookies – Sugar cookies or shortbread rolled in cinnamon sugar.
  • Churro cupcakes – Vanilla or chocolate cupcakes topped with cinnamon buttercream frosting.
  • Churro muffins – Studded with cinnamon chips and topped with streusel.

You can decorate these churro-style bakes with additional cinnamon sugar, chocolate drizzle, or cajeta sauce.

Churro tortilla chips

For a savory churro-inspired snack, look for churro tortilla chips. These crunchy chips are dusted with cinnamon and sugar for sweet and salty flavor.

Churro tortilla chips are delicious on their own or paired with:

  • Guacamole or salsa – The fruitiness pairs nicely with the sweetness.
  • Queso dip – Warm, melty cheese complements the cinnamon sugar.
  • Fruit like mango – Contrasts salty and sweet.

You can also crumble them on top of chili or soups for added texture and flavor.

Homemade churros

While buying churros is convenient, consider making a batch at home for the freshest taste. Homemade churros also allow you to customize flavors.

Start by making a simple dough of flour, water, sugar, salt, butter, and baking powder. Then either pipe the dough into strips and cut it into pieces, or use a churro press to shape. Fry in oil until golden brown before coating in cinnamon sugar.

You can get creative with homemade churros by:

  • Filling them with ingredients like dulce de leche before frying.
  • Flavored sugars like orange, coffee, or maple.
  • Drizzling with creative sauces like raspberry, limoncello, or Irish cream.
  • Rolling in toppings like coconut, chopped nuts, or crushed cookies.

Making churros at home lets you customize them just how you like.

Churro variations around the world

While Mexican churros are widely known, churro-like pastries can also be found in many other cuisines around the world. Some examples include:

  • Porraantxa – Fried dough strips coated in sugar from the Basque region of Spain.
  • Calentitos – Ring-shaped puff pastries from Colombia.
  • Youtiao – Fried cruellers eaten for breakfast in China.
  • Gulgula – African sweet fried dough balls soaked in syrup.
  • Pączki – Filled Polish doughnuts similar to churros.

Trying churro-style treats from other cultures offers new flavor twists on the classic snack. You can get inspiration for different ways to enjoy Mexican churros too.


With their crispy fried dough and cinnamon sugar coating, Mexican churros are an iconic treat to enjoy. There are many delicious ways to eat churros beyond just snacking on them plain. Dip them in sauces like cajeta or chocolate, pair them with Mexican hot drinks, or use them in creative ice cream desserts. Filled churros, churro cereal, and churro-inspired baked goods also offer fun ways to experience different churro flavors and textures. However you choose to eat them, Mexican churros are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth in the tastiest way.