Hispanic Food On The Rise: Tortilla Sales Beat Out Hot Dog Buns

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For example, millennials throughout the United States are fawning over Mexican soda Jarritos, which boasts unique flavors like Guava and Tamarindo in a hip, glass, vintage-looking bottle. The bottle caps share a simple message: “Que Buenos Son.”

However, the saturation of Hispanic foods into the market is attributed to more than just flavor. Many Americans choose to include Latin foods in their life because they’re easy to cook. Few people are willing to buy a wok and stir-fry authentic Asian cuisine, but many are happy to break out their skillet and slap together a quesadilla.

According to Fox News Latino, this has meant a near complete loss of ethnicity for many Hispanic foods. Americans now more closely associate tacos, tortillas chips, burritos, and quesadillas with fast food than with Latin culture.

This trend is especially evident in one major Hispanic food: the tortilla chip. Tortilla chips increased at a faster pace in supermarket sales than potato chips this year, according to InfoScan reviews. While potato chips still dominate the market, the “growth of tortilla chips is a little bit more robust than the grown of potato chips,” says Tom Dempsey, CEO of the Snack Food Association, “And both tortilla chips and potato chips are reflecting greater influence from the Hispanic taste profile than in previous years.”

Products like Doritos, Fritos, Cheetos, and Lays have all gotten Latin spins in recent years -- everything from Chile Limon Lays to Jalapeño Pringles to Flaming Hot Cheetos.

Additionally, Hispanic ingredients have moved beyond the international aisle. More and more Americans find themselves adding taco shells, enchilada sauce, or frozen chimichangas to their shopping carts on a daily basis. 

“There is a large segment of the population that wants the real things,” says Terry Soto, president and CEO of About Marketing Solutions, which specializes in the Hispanic market, “It’s not so much the products becoming mainstream. It’s about ethnic food becoming that much more of what we eat on a day-to-day basis.”

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About this author

Cristina Arreola, Editorial Assistant

Originally from El Paso, Texas, Cristina Mari Arreola earned her degree at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University before moving to BrooklynNew York. In her downtime, you can usually find her scouring the city for the most authentic Mexican food (still looking...), scaring herself silly watching horror movies, or baking her favorite sweets. You can follow her on Twitter at @c_arreola

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