Grocery Shopping in Mexico Like A Local Would

Hola! Welcome to the Mexico Relocation Guide.

I’m Mariana, and today, I’m excited to share a highly requested topic—grocery shopping in Mexico. Moving to a new country means adjusting to new ways of getting everyday essentials.

Grocery shopping in Mexico can be both similar and different from what you’re used to. This guide will help you navigate where to buy groceries, household goods, cleaning products, and organic or specialized dietary items.

We’ll also compare prices of common household items to give you a clear picture of shopping here.

YouTube video

Buying Local

Why Shop Locally?

Buying local means supporting small producers like family-owned corner stores, farmers’ markets, flea markets, and local artisans. Shopping here provides fresh, high-quality produce with fewer additives and pesticides. Plus, it helps you save money and support local economies rather than big corporations.

Local Markets: Mercados

Mercados, equivalent to farmers’ markets, are deeply rooted in Mexican culture. They are vibrant hubs where you can find fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, and more. Each mercado has its unique offerings, and some are more extensive than others.

  • Carnicerías: For beef, pork, and chicken.
  • Pollerías: Specialize in chicken.
  • Pescaderías: Offer fish and seafood.
  • Cremerías: Provide cheese, eggs, bread, ham, and cold cuts.

In mercados, you’ll find everything from food to clothing and furniture. Prices and products vary, so it’s essential to shop around and interact with vendors for the best deals.

Our Experience in Querétaro

We visited Mercado del Tepe and Mercado de la Cruz in Querétaro to find all the items on our shopping list. Both markets were bustling with fresh produce and friendly vendors. We found everything we needed and enjoyed the community feel that is unique to these markets.

Tianguis: Pop-Up Markets

What is a Tianguis?

A Tianguis is a pop-up market that appears on specific days of the week. These markets are lively, with street food, music, and vendors selling everything from produce to electronics.

Our Tianguis Experience

In the Bajío region, we explored Tianguis in three different cities. The vibrant atmosphere, variety of goods, and interaction with vendors made for a unique shopping experience. While the variety of brands is limited, the quality and freshness of products are excellent.

Neighborhood Stores: Tienditas

Convenience at Your Doorstep

Tienditas are small, family-owned stores found in traditional Mexican neighborhoods. They offer essential products, snacks, cleaning supplies, and sometimes fresh produce and meats. These stores provide a homey feel and are vital for daily needs.

Big Box Supermarkets

Supermarket Chains in Mexico

Mexico has both international and local supermarket chains, including Walmart, Costco, H-E-B, and Chedraui. These stores offer a wide variety of products, including imported and gourmet items. However, prices in these stores tend to be higher compared to local markets and tianguis.

Our Supermarket Experience

We visited both high-end supermarkets like H-E-B and City Market, as well as more common ones like Chedraui and Soriana. While the experience was similar, high-end stores had a broader selection of imported and specialty products. However, prices were significantly higher than in local markets.

Shopping for Organic and Plant-Based Products

The Growing Organic Market

While finding organic and vegan products can be challenging, larger cities like Mexico City and Guadalajara offer a variety of specialized stores and markets. These products are more expensive due to the lengthy processes involved in their production.

Our Experience in Central Mexico

We visited organic stores in Querétaro, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, and Guadalajara. It took multiple visits to different stores to find all the items on our list. Though the process was time-consuming and costly, the personalized attention and quality of the products were worth it. To find specialty stores in your city/town, we suggest doing a quick Google search and seeing what results are near you.

Where Will You Shop?

We hope this guide helps you understand the grocery shopping landscape in Mexico. Whether you’re buying from local mercados, tianguis, tienditas, or supermarkets, each option offers unique benefits.

Exploring these options will help you find the best quality and prices while immersing yourself in the local culture.

Interested in learning more about shopping tips for a specific town or city in Mexico? Consider joining our Mexico Relocation Tours. You’ll gain insider knowledge and practical tips tailored to your desired location. Visit our website at and start planning your move to Mexico today!

Mariana Lange

Mariana Lima-Lange was born in Mexico and immigrated to the U.S. when she was a child. She spent every summer visiting family throughout Mexico and is very knowledgeable about Mexican culture, lifestyle, and traditions. She is fluent in both Spanish and English.

Reader Interactions

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *