How to take a taste of Mexico home with you! Food souvenirs

Mexican salsas

Two things you think about when coming to Mexico is, good food and what to buy for souvenirs. Why not take a taste of Mexico back home with you next time. It can be a very thoughtful gift, affordable and perfect for those people that seem to have everything.

Here are some great suggestions from us on what products are good to take home for souvenirs for friends (or you).

Great food gifts to buy in Playa Del Carmen

Alcohol Gifts in Playa Del Carmen

Playa Del Carmen giftsThe number one thing we always tell people to try and or buy is Xtabentun liquor. This is a Mayan liquor made from herbs and honey and has a distinct anise flavor. It is sweet and good over ice. You can only find this here in the Yucatan Peninsula, so this is definitely a nice little something special to take home. D’Aristi is the biggest brand and has good quality.

Where to buy it:

You can find these bottles of yellow liquor all over 5th Avenue and in gift stores like Hacienda Tequila. It will cost about $10 USD for a small bottle and larger ones $15 USD. You can however find small bottles in AKI supermarket for about 60 pesos and in La Europea alcohol store for about 60 pesos as well when they have it in stock (that is half the price 5th Avenue).

Mezcal is more popular then ever. It is similar to tequila and something unique to Mexico. It can come in flavors like mango and tamarind.

Where to buy it:

La Europea liquor store in Quinta Alegria Mall on 5th Avenue and Constituyentes Avenue. Most bottles start at 500 pesos and go up to 2000 pesos.

Salsas of Mexico

Nothing says Mexico like a salsa! Not only are there countless varieties in Mexico there are some very regional salsa from the Yucatan Peninsula.

Where to buy it:

You can find it along 5th Avenue in many tourist shops but if you are going to the grocery store you can find the same ones for less. All of the grocery stores have an ample supply of local made salsas and not at tourist prices! For where the grocery stores are in Playa see our guide here. A bottle will cost about $2-4USD. If you don’t want to go to the grocery store then don’t worry. There are plenty of places on 5th Avenue that have them like Hacienda Tequila. The good thing is they are all carry on size.

You can buy salsas at the Cancun Airport on departure but you will kick yourself because the selection is limited and you pay more.

Tip: Look for regional salsas made here in the Yucatan. Anything with “Maya”, “Yucatan”, or if it is made with habanero peppers, it is most likely local made.

Mexican Chocolate Gifts

Chocolate is a product of Mexico and who does not like chocolate? Ah Cacao is a local coffee house that serves coffee and chocolate drinks like Mayan hot chocolate. Ah Cacao also sells Mexican products made from chocolate at each of their stores. You can find quality chocolate bars, cacao powder and other things here.

Where to buy it:

We prefer the Ah Cacao store on 5th Avenue at Constituyentes Avenue and the location between 38th and 40th Street on 5th Avenue. See the link to Ah Cacao for a map of locations.

Playa Del Carmen gifts
Chocolate products at Ah Cacao Café.

You can also find some good gourmet chocolate bars at these three stores:

Chocolate and jams in Mexico make great gifts
Chocolate and jam for sale at Tequila Bazar on 5th Avenue.

Jams and Tropical jellies

Dona Pura is a company based in Cancun. They make some great products including our favorite, Chizamora jam. It is a taste you often do not get in Mexico. It has blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and a splash of chipotle peppers. The sweet and a little spice is a nice surprise. This makes for a nice gourmet treat. Jars are about $4-6 USD.

Playa Del Carmen gifts
Dona Pura jams

Where to buy them:

You can find Dona Pura jams in La Europea liquor store and in Bio Organicos Store on 26th Street.

Coffee from Mexico

Mexico has some good coffee growing regions like Veracruz and Chiapas. There is no coffee grown in the Yucatan Peninsula but it is imported, roasted and bagged here. Kaawa is a local roaster and is known for good coffee. They make several different mixes of coffee for consumers to meet your taste. This makes for a good gift.

Where to buy it:

You can find bags for sale in the small Italian specialty food store of Sapori de Casa on Constituyentes Avenue near 20th Avenue. Bags come in two sizes and cost about 75-120 pesos each.

Note: Don’t buy coffee in tourist shops on 5th Avenue or in the grocery stores because it will not be as fresh as the above mentioned place.

Mayan Honey

The Mayans are known as good bee keepers and there is much honey produced in the Yucatan. This makes for a nice gift to take home.

Where to buy it:

Don’t buy this at the grocery store. It is more about offering a cheap product. At Bio Organicos (where you can get the jam too) they have gourmet Mayan honey that will taste great! This store is on 26th Street between 5th Avenue and 10th Avenue.

Tequila Cake!

This is touristy but we like the small tins these small sponge cakes come in. The cakes are sealed in plastic and soaked in tequila. Don’t worry about them spoiling before you get them home. After you eat the cake you have a nice little tin for change. This gift is easy to transport.

Note: They come in margarita flavor as well.

Where to buy them:

You used to be able to find these in almost all large tourist stores but now one of the only places is on 5th Avenue between 2nd Street and 4th Street at a large tourist shop called Le Best Playa. If you do not see them, ask and they will point them out to you. They cost about $7USD. If you miss it you might be able to find it at the airport, but don’t take the chance if this sounds good to you!

After reading this guide you might want to read out Ultimate Playa Del Carmen Shopping Guide. It covers everything about shopping in Playa Del Carmen.

Happy shopping everyone! We hope you find a little taste of Mexico to take home with you. We hope you found some good Playa Del Carmen gifts. Do you have some other things not mentioned here that you like? Let us know in the comment box below. We love to hear from our readers.


    • Mexico is know as a good vanilla producer. We glad you like shopping for that as a souvenir. Good quality can be hard to find but when you do get it, it makes baking all the much better!

    • High quality vanilla honestly is hard to find. Some of the better options would be Dac Market on 30th Avenue. If they have it, this is not a tourist store that has had it on the shelf for months. A place closer to 5th is Ah Cacao coffee shops. These coffee shops have a small gift section and also have the chocolate massage oil we like.
      We were just in Valladolid at a local Mayan market and they had it. It was the real deal but of course if you are not planning to leave town, this is not an option. We just thought we would mention it because sometimes foodies don’t think about some options. You can see a video on our facebook we just posted on this market. We took a chef there the other day.
      We hope you are able to find some good vanilla here.

  1. Can I bring items like these in my carry on luggage? We will not be taking any checked luggage to Playa from the US.

    • Hello Jenna

      Many of these items are under 3.5 ounces which is the limit for liquids in carry on. Happy shopping and we hope you have fun here!

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