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New Mexico Foods, Dining in New Mexico

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On this page:
New Mexico Foods: General - Chile - Non-Chile Foods - Wine, Beer, and Other Beverages - Nuts - Food Events in New Mexico - New Mexico Cuisine, Cookbooks, & Recipes: About the Cuisine - Cookbooks - Recipes - Dining in New Mexico: Statewide - By city

New Mexico Foods

General
  • Directory of New Mexico Food Producers Online - A directory of New Mexico food producers who sell their products online. Maintained by the New Mexico Department of Agriculture.
  • New Mexico Fresh Produce Directory - A directory of producers and processors of fresh produce in New Mexico. It doesn't list any web links, just names and phone numbers. Maintained by the New Mexico Department of Agriculture.
  • New Mexico Farmers' Markets - A very pleasant way to spend a morning. Statewide listing includes clickable map of market locations and a harvest calendar.
  • Santa Fe School of Cooking - Ceramics, cooking tools, speciality foods, New Mexican chiles, cookbooks, and prints
  • Chile - Chile pepper facts, events, producers, seeds and plants, products, and recipes.

    Non-Chile Foods
  • Edible Flowers - "Locally grown edible flowers made into salad dressings, vinegars, and dried flower mixes for dips, garnish, and tea."
  • Bluebird Herb Farm - "Bluebird Herb Farm is an organic herb farm and herbal product company located in Taos, New Mexico. We focus on producing products made from pure, natural, wholesome ingredients, with the minimum of preservatives. In the kitchen we offer an assortment of herbal vinegars, oils, teas, and spice mixes."
  • Oatie Yum Yum - "Oatie Yum Yum cookie bars are made with natural and organic ingredients. They are wheat-free, dairy-free, and also have no hydrogenated oils, animal products, preservatives, or refined sugars."
  • Bite Size Bakery - home of the Anise Seed Bizcochito, the Official State Cookie of New Mexico.
  • Little Poncho Chili Pickles - "The Pickle with the PUNCH! On the Zuni Reservation, every year we would can the hot little pickles we called Native Pickles. Now, 3 generations later, I carry on the tradition using our family recipe. So enjoy this taste of the Southwest. Bet you can't eat just one!"
  • La Chicana Pickled Jalapeños - Pickled jalapeños, whole and sliced. "Let La Chicana spice up your life!"
  • SweetHots - "Cannon's Sweet Hots, makers of "The Best Sweet Chile in the World", also offers Just Plain Green Chile, Cannon Fire Green Chile Salsa and hot sauces, all made with New Mexico green chile with our famous Flame-Roasted flavor."
  • Muy Cool Pepper Jellies - "It's Better Than it Sounds" What a great slogan! "We take the best of New Mexico's harvest and turn it into the finest stuff you've ever tasted. Green Chile Jelly, Raspberry-Chambord Compote, Prickly Pear Cactus Syrup, Chipotle Dip and much more."
  • A Farmer's Wife Homemade Gourmet Jams and Jellies - "We make and sell premium gourmet jams in a certified kitchen on our own Cherry Valley Farm."
  • Crown Jewel Gourmet Popcorn - Who knew there were so many types of popcorn?! "The Choice of the Popcorn Connoisseur."
  • Coonridge Certified Organic Goat Cheese - "Coonridge Goat Cheese has been made using the milk from our free range goats since 1982. We know our customers appreciate our luscious cheese. We also hope they feel a connection to New Mexico's high desert country made through recieving cheese from our natural healthy does who feed in the wilds here."
  • Just Pinto Beans - "In the heart of New Mexico, Torrance County, some of the best pinto beans are raised. Grown where the elevation is over 6000 feet, only the best seed is used. If you are buying beans at the grocery store, you will be amazed with the difference fresh beans make in the time it takes to cook, the color, and of course the taste!"
  • Beverages: Beer, Wine, Coffee, Tea, Soda, and More
  • New Mexico Wine Growers' Association - Very nice site listing wine tours, wine festivals and events, location maps of wineries and vineyards, and links to two dozen New Mexico wineries.
  • New Mexico Wine Country - "The Oldest Wine Producing Region in the U.S." (Viva)

  • New Mexico Brewing.org - Very nice site about beer and brewing in New Mexico. Created and maintained by the Dukes of Ale, Albuquerque's homebrew club since 1989.
  • New Mexico Breweries and Brewpubs - (PubCrawler)
  • New Mexico Breweries and Brewpubs - (Beer Expedition)
  • New Mexico Breweries and Brewpubs - (NewMexicoBrewing.org)
  • Breweries and Brewpubs in the Albuquerque-Santa Fe area - (RealBeer.com)
  • Southwest Brewing News Online! - Beer and brewing in the great Southwest
  • Rio Grande Brewing Company - Albuquerque

  • New Mexico Pinon Coffee Company - "Fresh Roasted New Mexico Pinon Coffee and Southwestern Gourmet Foods"
  • Native American Teas and Coffees - from the Cooking Post site
  • Blue Sky Soda - All-natural and usually found at health food stores and food coops. "Our delicious products are "healthy alternatives" without preservatives, additives, artificial colors, flavors, and caffeine, so common in today's choices."


  • Nuts
    Did you know that New Mexico is the 4th largest producer of nuts in the U.S.? (and we ain't just talking about Santa Fe!) (Sorry - couldn't resist.) (Please don't flame me)   Seriously, New Mexico's long, hot summers are ideally suited for growing pecans, and Alamogordo, in the southern part of New Mexico, is one of the few counties in the United States with summers long, hot, and dry enough to grow pistachios, a native of the Middle East.
  • Eagle Ranch Pistachio Groves - "Warmed by the bright sun in southern New Mexico, Eagle Ranch Pistachio Groves is a thriving family farm offering a delightful selection of fresh pistachios and other delicious southwestern gourmet food items."
  • Pistachio Tree Ranch & McGinn's Country Store - "Pistachios, pistachio products, flavored salsas, peppers, jellies and other Southwestern specialties, Southwestern gifts, and so much more."


  • One of the most enjoyable experiences in the summertime in Las Cruces is to go for a walk or ride through the pecan groves surrounding the city. The trees are beautiful, the shade is dense and welcome, and the drop in temperature from the sizzling desert sun to the cool darkness of the groves is just amazing. Families used to go for picnics in the groves on the weekends, and some growers still allow it.
  • Stahmann's of New Mexico - The granddaddy of pecan farms in New Mexico, credited with bringing pecan farming to the state. Legend has it that Mr. Stahmann bought a batch of pecan trees for pennies at an auction and just stuck them in the ground to see how they'd do. The rest is history. "Stahmann Farms was established in 1932 and today is the world's largest family-owned pecan farm. Our orchard, located on 4,000 acres near Las Cruces, is comprised of 180,000 trees that generate 8 to 10 million pounds of pecans annually." Their site offers pecan products & gifts, pecans for baking, holiday gifts, corporate gift service, fundraising products, and wholesale purchasing.
  • Mountain States Pecan Groves - in Roswell. "Even if you're a tough nut to crack, Mountain States Pecan will make a true pecan lover out of you. Our delicious treats are homemade right here on the farm with the finest, freshest ingredients available for unparalleled pecan pleasure perfection." Unparalleled pecan pleasure perfection? Cool.
  • The Pecan Company - in Carlsbad. "The Pecan Company specializes in pecans and related gift items. We grow, sell, and ship pecans all over the United States. All of our pecan treats are made in our store using fresh pecans from our orchard."


  • Food Events in New Mexico
  • The National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show - Albuquerque Convention Center, Albuquerque, early March
  • The New Mexico Wine and Chile War Festival - Memorial Day weekend, Las Cruces at the Southern New Mexico Fairgrounds. "A 'hotly' (get it?) contested battle between Texas and New Mexico over who can prepare the best chile. Sample wine from the many New Mexico wineries along-side live entertainment and local vendors."
  • Albuquerque Wine Festival - Albuquerque at Balloon Fiesta Park, Memorial Day weekend
  • La Viña April Jazz Festival and October Wine Festival - Two fun events 20 minutes south of Las Cruces in La Union, NM.
  • The Whole Enchilada Fiesta - Las Cruces, Labor Day weekend. "The Whole Enchilada Fiesta is a three-day celebration of southern New Mexico's traditions, people and great food. The celebration is centered around the making of the world's largest enchilada, as recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records." (Read about the quest to be listed in the Book of World Records).
  • The Hatch Chile Festival - Hatch, Labor Day weekend.
    • Hatch Chile Festival - Woodstock for Chileheads - Story and photos by Harald & Renate Zoschke. "On a Labor Day weekend, Hatch's population swells to from a thousand to about 12,000 to 15,000 - most of them chileheads. It's the Hatch Chile Festival!"
    • Celebrate Chiles at the Hatch Chile Festival - By Sunny Conley. How to get there and what to do once you're there.
    • Discover Hatch - A Chile Lover's Dream - By Sunny Conley. "Just when the rest of New Mexico begins to cool at the dawn of autumn, Southern New Mexico begins to sizzle. The fiery happenings begin on Labor Day Weekend when the normally pacific village of Hatch is transformed into blissful pandemonium."
  • New Mexico Wine Festival - Bernalillo Festival Grounds, Labor Day weekend
  • Harvest Festival - Southern NM Fairgrounds, Las Cruces, Labor Day weekend
  • Hillsboro Apple Festival - Located an hour north of Las Cruces, Hillsboro is famous for its apples and apple festival. Hillsboro, Labor Day weekend
  • The Really Chile Festival - Santa Fe Plaza, third Saturday in September. A combo celebration of lowriders and lowrider culture and the statewide chile harvest. Features the crowning of the Really Chile King and Queen, a Carlos Santana look-alike contest, a Frida Kahlo beauty contest, and a lowrider car competition.
  • The Santa Fe Wine & Chile Fiesta - Sponsored by the Santa Fe Restaurant Association. Last weekend in September in Santa Fe.
  • Traditions Wine Festival - Traditions Marketplace, Budaghers, NM, first weekend in October
  • Connoisseur Classic Southwest Wine Competition - held in Ruidoso as part of the Pinestock Festival, "a festival of music, grapes, and grain."
  • Lincoln County Cowboy Symposium Chuckwagon Cookoff - "Put on your cowboy hat and working pair of boots to celebrate the Old West's restaurant on the range — the chuckwagon. 40 cowboy cookin' teams compete over open fires for a large purse for their beef, beans, potatoes, biscuit and dessert creations. The judging is based on the authenticity of the wagon and culinary equipment as well as the food quality." Ruidoso Downs Race Track, Ruidoso, second weekend in October.



  • New Mexican Cuisine, Cookbooks, & Recipes

    About the Cuisine
    First and most important: New Mexican food is not the same as Mexican food! The primary difference is the featured role of green chile in New Mexican cuisine. The reason that everyone else uses red chile instead of green is that red chile can be dried, lasts a long time, and is easily transported whole or powdered. Green chile, on the other hand, is a fresh vegetable and must be used or frozen immediately upon harvest, and thus tends to remain a regional specialty. (See the How-To section above for how to roast, peel, and freeze chiles.) Note also that green chile sauce is totally different than tomatillo sauce, which is usually the only green sauce option with Mexican food.
  • New Mexican Food Lover's Guide - "Not quite sure what Carne Adovada is? Don't worry, we have included a helpful glossary of terms. It's OK. Not everyone can be from New Mexico." (Abq. Journal)
  • A Definition of New Mexican Foods - The Cibolo Junction site provides this nice glossary defining common southwestern ingredients, dishes, desserts, fruits and vegetables, and beverages.
  • Glossary of New Mexican Foods - To help you appreciate New Mexican foods, the Public Service Company of New Mexico has compiled a glossary of food terms.
  • Newcomer's guide to New Mexican food - from the Las Cruces Bulletin
  • New Mexico Cuisine - by Nancy Gerlach R.D. "The cuisine of New Mexico is a unique blend of three different cultures: Native American, Mexican and European. Because of some common dishes, there is a tendency to lump the cuisines of the Southwest together, but New Mexican food is distinctly different from the foods of Arizona and Texas." Includes recipes for red chile sauce, green chile stew, calabacitas, and more.
  • Border Foods - by June Naylor. "California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas each have a different version of the cuisine to the south."
  • Pepper Profile: New Mexican Varieties - by Dave DeWitt. History, botanical information, and recipes featuring New Mexico's favorite food. "The intense use of chiles as a food rather than just as a spice or condiment is what differentiates New Mexican cuisine from that of Texas or Arizona. In neighboring states, chile powders are used as a seasoning for beef or chicken broth-based "chili gravies," which are thickened with flour or cornstarch before they are added to, say, enchiladas. In New Mexico, the sauces are made from pure chiles and are thickened by reducing the crushed or pureed pods." (Fiery-Foods.com)


  • Cookbooks
  • Cocinas De New Mexico - "Cocinas De New Mexico is published by the Public Service Company of New Mexico. Proceeds from sales help provide utility supplements to needy residents of New Mexico."
  • Green Chile Bible: Award-Winning New Mexico Recipes - Compiled by the Albuquerque Tribune. All green chile, all the time - what could be better? (Amazon)
  • A Tale of Two Chiles - By Judy Thompson. "Includes mostly recipes using red and green chile, starting with some basics most useful to cooks who are new to cooking with chiles. We've also made a video to go along with the book. It's not only a "how-to" for some of the trickier aspects of dealing with chile peppers, but also introduces you to the heart of New Mexico's chile country."
  • License to Cook New Mexico Style - Compiled by the New Mexico Federation of Business and Professional Women. Over 80 recipes, 164 pages, and only $6.95 at Amazon - what a deal! (Amazon)
  • Red Chile Bible: Southwestern Classic & Gourmet Recipes - By Kathleen Hansel & Audrey Jenkins. (Amazon)
  • The Art of American Indian Cooking - "Over 150 delicious, authentic, and traditional dishes from five North American regions."
  • Too Many Chiles! Recipes for Using and Preserving Your Peppers - By Dave DeWitt, Nancy Gerlach, and Jeff Gerlach. (Amazon)
  • The Whole Chile Pepper Book - By Dave Dewitt & Nancy Gerlach. "The editors of The Whole Chile Pepper magazine present the definitive book on chile peppers--history, lore, and over 150 tongue-tingling, throat-scorching recipes." (Amazon)
  • New Mexican Cookbooks - For sale on the New Mexico Magazine site. "For the best in Southwest style cooking, choose from our fine selection of cookbooks."
  • New Mexican Cookbooks - For sale on the Chile Mercado site. Great set of cookbooks, including The Best from New Mexico Kitchens by Sheila MacNiven Cameron, Historic Cookery by Fabiola C. Gilbert, first published in 1931 and possibly the earliest cookbook of New Mexican foods to be published, Mexican Cookbook by Erna Fergusson, which has sold more copies than any other native cookbook ever printed in the Southwest, and my favorite, Genuine New Mexico Tasty Recipes, by Cleofas M. Jaramillo, which I like just because of the name. And now that you want one of these books, don't just go buy them on Amazon - buy from this site and respect the effort they went to to find these books and keep them in stock.


  • Recipes
  • Chiles Rellenos (Stuffed Green Chiles) - To understand how New Mexican food differs from Mexican food, start with New Mexican chiles rellenos. These chiles rellenos are nothing at all like what you've had in restaurants outside of New Mexico. In the outside world the dish is usually made with some hard round ancho chile that's just there as a vessel to hold the filling. In New Mexico the focus of the dish is the chile itself, tender and fragrant. In early fall during harvest time when the chiles are fresh out of the fields there is nothing more delicious in this world. Everybody has their own secret recipe for rellenos, and when you find a restaurant that makes them the way you like them, you never order them anywhere else.
  • Green Chile Stew - Green chile stew is to New Mexican mothers what chicken soup is to Jewish mothers: the great cure-all, and a family recipe passed down through the generation. There are as many variations on the recipe as there are people cooking it.
  • Green Chile Chicken Stew - Yummmm. Serve with grated cheese and chopped cilantro.
  • Green Chile Stew with Pork
  • Zuni Green Chile Stew - with lamb, juniper berries, and posole (hominy).
  • Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas - Another regional comparison: what tuna casserole is to the Midwest, enchilada casseroles are to New Mexico. Quick, easy, always delicious, with an infinite number of variations, and everybody likes their mother's recipe the best. Note that in New Mexico, enchiladas are stacked, not rolled. This recipe is similar to mine. I make mine with 1 can of cream of chicken soup, 1 can of cream of mushroom soup, 1 can of broth, and 8 oz. of sour cream (technically the sour cream makes them Enchiladas Suizas).
  • Green Chile Enchiladas - Fast, easy, and delicious.
  • New Mexico Huevos Rancheros with Homemade Green Chile Stew - from the Casa de las Chimeneas Bed and Breakfast in Taos
  • Posole Stew - By Barbara Agte and Carla DeMarco. A New Mexico holiday tradition.
  • Bizcochitos - "These anise flavored cookies are served for special occasions in New Mexico." (Great SouthWest Cookery)
  • Sopaipillas - "These fried gems are my favorite of all breads. They look like three-cornered pillows. I have had them with honey/butter, sprinkled with powdered sugar, and stuffed with anything from green chili and Monteray Jack cheese to hamburger chili." (Great SouthWest Cookery)
  • How to roast and peel fresh green chile - by Nancy Gerlach, Fiery-Foods.com Food Editor. How to roast and peel fresh green chile and what to do with it afterwards: recipes for Chiles Rellenos, Green Chile Sauce, and the queen of the New Mexican winter table, Green Chile Stew. (see below for more chile recipes)

    Recipe Collections
  • Traditional Native American Recipes - From The Cooking Post, a Native American foods store sponsored by Santa Ana Pueblo
  • The Great SouthWest Cookery Online Cookbook - "These recipes have been collected over the years from various restaurants and cooks in Northern New Mexico." Published by Pueblo Graphics.
  • Recipes from Cocinas De New Mexico - A large selection of recipes from this wonderful collection of authentic New Mexican recipes.
  • Authentic New Mexican cuisine - Just what it says - a great collection of authentic New Mexican recipes. Includes recipes for green chile sauce, green chile stew, carne adovada, home-made pinto beans, and calabazitas, a traditional dish of squash with corn and green chile. (ChileAddict)
  • New Mexico Tech Library's Potluck Cookbook
  • New Mexico Recipes collected by the Pojoaque Middle School
  • Boise and Michelle's Southwestern Kitchen - "It can't be called anything but New Mexican cooking. It's not Mexican food, or Tex-Mex, or even southwestern cuisine. It's unique to New Mexico, based on Pueblo, Navajo, and Apache food staples, added to by the Spanish and Mexicans, then influenced by 19th century US settlers and reservation commodities."
  • New Mexico Family Recipes - from Ol' Gringo
  • Green chile recipes - from AllRecipes, my favorite recipe archive
  • Green chile recipes - from SOAR (now RecipeSource)
  • Recipes from Chile Pepper Magazine
  • Pepper Fool's Hot & Spicy Recipe Pages - With over a thousand recipes.
  • Fiery-Foods.com RecipeBase - "Hot & Spicy Recipes from around the World just a Mouseclick away."
  • The Chile-Heads Recipe Collection - includes most of the recipes posted to the Chile-Heads list
  • A huge list of salsa recipes - "293 salsa recipes and growing!"
  • Pickled pepper recipes - by Dave DeWitt, Nancy Gerlach, and Jeff Gerlach. 10 great recipes with good directions and pretty pictures.

  • Pecan recipes - from Mountain States Pecans
  • Pecan recipes - from Stahmanns



  • Dining in New Mexico

    Statewide dining guides
  • New Mexican Food Lover's Guide - "Not quite sure what Carne Adovada is? Don't worry, we have included a helpful glossary of terms. It's OK. Not everyone can be from New Mexico." (Abq. Journal)
  • Glossary of New Mexican Foods - To help you understand and appreciate New Mexican foods, the Public Service Company of New Mexico has compiled a glossary of food terms.
  • Newcomer's guide to New Mexican food - from the Las Cruces Bulletin

  • New Mexico Restaurants.com - "The most comprehensive listing of restaurants in NM. View and post ratings of New Mexico restaurants in the state's best dining directory."
  • New Mexico Restaurant Association
  • Restaurants of New Mexico - "New Mexico is famous for its restaurants. In this section we feature restaurant reviews from our readers. As such they represent a wide variety of accuracy and usefulness." (Viva)
  • Active Diner restaurant reviews for New Mexico - Only has reviews for restaurants for a few cities so far.


  • City/Regional dining guides
  • Albuquerque Journal Dining pages - articles, restaurant reviews, and dining guides by city for Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, Los Alamos, Las Vegas, and Española.
  • The Albuquerque Alibi Dining Out pages - weekly restaurant reviews and dining guide
  • Albuquerque restaurant listings with descriptions - from the Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • Restaurants and Menu Guide for Taos and Northern New Mexico
  • Cuisine and Restaurants in Santa Fe
  • Santa Fe Restaurant Association Official Dining Guide
  • Dining in Northern New Mexico - Nice overview of the history of New Mexican food, and good listing of restaurants in the Santa Fe/Taos area. (GuestLife)
  • Socorro restaurant reviews - by Barry Clark. A pretty complete list and review of every restaurant in the Socorro area, including the legendary Owl Bar.
  • A gourmand in the desert - by John Shipman. Restaurant reviews of Socorro-area restaurants by a self-confessed "foodie".

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