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Jamaica Tacos: Vegetarian Friendly Hibiscus Flower Tacos

jamaica tacos hibiscus flower tacosLR

During this strange time, I’ve been cooking as my main form of connecting with my community, myself, and enjoying simple pleasures. It’s been a really fun way to play with Oaxacan ingredients and dishes, so I want to share some of these recipes with you. First up will be vegetarian-friendly jamaica tacos – or tacos filled with hibiscus flowers.

This post and recipe is written in collaboration with: Perrito de Mercado

The first way I connect with a culture is through the food. When I travel, I can’t wait to have that first meal, to wander through the market and see what food items are most prominent. All over the world, food is how we structure our day, celebrate special occasions, and spend time with loved ones. It’s the universal way we can connect. So during this uncertain time of quarantine, I’ve been cooking to connect with the city outside that I can’t wander around right now.

As I’m touching, chopping, smelling, and mixing these Oaxacan ingredients, I feel a little less lost. I feel the joy of travel, of understanding other cultures. I hope you can find some of this joy too when you try out these recipes.

A few benefits of jamaica/hibiscus flower: lowers blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, alleviates menstrual pain, improves digestion.

Recipe below in English, and keep scrolling for the Spanish version below.

Jamaica Tacos (Hibiscus Flower Tacos)

Illustration: Perrito de Mercado

Recipe: Perrito de Mercado

Prep time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2


  • 2 cups of dried hibiscus flowers/jamaica
  • 4-6 corn tortillas
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 cups of vegetable oil (or see below for non-fried version)
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • A handful of cilantro
  • 2 avocados
  • 1 lime
  • Salt
  • Queso fresco/fresh cheese


  1. Boil the hibiscus flower/jamaica in 3 cups of water to hydrate the flowers, and make a concentrate for the flavored water (see below).
  2. In a pan, saute the chopped onion, tomato, and garlic.
  3. Once the jamaica water boils, remove the jamaica/hibiscus flower, chop into pieces or use it whole.
  4. Add the jamaica/hibiscus flower to the pan and mix well with the onion, tomato, and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes on low heat. Put this to the side.
  5. In the hot pan, add 2 cups of vegetable oil. Meanwhile, add the jamaica mixture inside the tortillas, roll them, and submerge them in the hot oil until crispy. (See below for not-fried version).
  6. Remove the fried tacos and let them dry over paper towels.

To Serve:

  1. Remove the avocado pits and put the avocado flesh in a bowl.
  2. Add the juice of one lime, salt to taste, and a minced garlic clove.
  3. Serve the tacos with a hearty dolop of guacamole on top, crumbled queso fresco, and chopped or shredded fresh cilantro.

Spicy Version:

Add chopped, de-seeded serrano chiles at the same time that you saute the onion, tomato, and garlic.

Non-fried Version:

Prepare the mix of jamaica, onion, tomato, and garlic as described above. Serve on hot tortillas or tostadas and add the guacamole, queso fresco, and cilantro.

Extra bonus

Jamaica and Mint Water

  1. Save the concentrate water of jamaica and put it in a blender. Add hierba buena or mint, the juice of one lime, and ice. Sugar to taste. Blend briefly. This is a concentrate so save it in a bottle as is and add more water and mix to serve.
jamaica tacos hibiscus tacos

Tacos de Flor de Jamaica 

Tiempo de preparación: 30 minutos
Personas: 2


  • 2 tazas de flor de jamaica
  • 4-6 tortillas de maiz
  • 2 tomates
  • 2 tazas de aceite vegetal
  • 1/2 cebolla
  • 3 dientes de ajo
  • Un ramito de cilantro
  • 2 aguacates
  • 1 limon
  • Sal
  • Queso fresco

Como preparar:

  1. Hierve la flor de jamaica para hacer un concentrado para agua de sabor.
  2. En un sartén pon a freír la cebolla, tomate y ajo bien picados.
  3. Una vez el agua de jamaica hirvió, puedes picar la jamaica o ponerla entera.
  4. Agregar al sartén y mezclar bien con la cebolla el tomate y ajo déjalo cocinar por 5 minutos a fuego lento. Reserva.
  5. En el sartén calienta dos tazas de aceite, y coloca la jamaica en tortillas de maíz, hazlo rollo y sumerge en el aceite bien caliente.
  6. Deja secar sobre servilletas absorbentes de papel.

Para acompañar:

  1. Deshuesa los aguacates y sírvelos en un tazón.
  2. Agrégale el jugo de un limon, sal al gusto, y un ajo picado.
  3. Sirva los tacos y encima agregue el guacamole y queso fresco y cilantro.

Versión picante:

Puede agregar chiles serranos al mismo tiempo que fríe la cebolla, los tomates y el ajo.

Versión con menos grasa:

Prepare la mezcla de jamaica, cebolla, tomate, y ajo como descrito arriba. Sirvalo con tortillas calientes o tostadas y agrege el guacamole y queso fresco.

Extra bonus.

Agua de jamaica con hierbabuena 

  1. Con el concentrado de jamaica agregar agua en una licuadora, hierba buena, el jugo de un limon y hielo, mucho hielo. Azucar al gusto.

What did you think? How did your jamaica tacos turn out? Tell us below!

For other recipes, check out the full list here. And other Oaxaca travel tips and inspiration is here.

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3 Responses

  1. Lesley
    | Reply

    Yay! Thanks for this! Will do tomorrow. I am making fresh agua de jamaica and I’ll have a the flower already boiled. This is awesome! I can’t wait to keep studying Spanish thru recetes. This is a great new opportunity for me.

    • Susan Ripley
      | Reply

      Yay! So happy to hear it! And studying Spanish through recipes sounds like a great idea. More coming soon. 🙂

  2. […] probando Susan las cuales algunas ya están en su Website Brooklyn Tropicali  , como los tacos de Jamaica o las hamburgesas oaxaqueñas, que fue una receta que nos inventamos poniendo cosas que teniamos en […]

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