Tostilocos Are The Fully-Loaded Street Food That Starts With A Bag Of Tostitos

Mexican street food has become a global sensation, with restaurants and recipes worldwide imitating long-standing snacks like esquites, mangonadas, and the almighty taco. Tostilocos are yet another Mexican street food invention that's made its way onto North American menus. The name derives from a combination of the word "loco," meaning crazy, and Tostitos, the American corn chip debuted by Frito-Lay in the 1970s in homage to traditional Mexican tortilla chips. Lore has it that street vendors from Tijuana invented the dish in the early 2000s by cutting open a single-serving bag of Tostitos and loading it with sauces, vegetables, and other common snack foods to create the ultimate munchie.

The recipe has expanded and diversified to include dozens of garnishes, sauces, and foundations, but its success as a street food snack lies in the chip bag. While you might want to serve Tostilocos in a bowl, the bag the chips come in is the original and still widely used portable container. For vendors and eaters on the go, the bag facilitates streetside eating and saves the extra expense and trash of bonafide serving dishes.

The chip bag further assists in seasoning and dispersing all the ingredients equally. It's basically a pliable bowl that you can bend and shake with one hand to ensure that all the sauces and snacks are distributed to every nook and cranny. You can even close the bag around the remaining ingredients as you eat them, shaking to further combine.

Variations and serving tips for Tostilocos

Today, you'll find Tostilocos stands all over Mexico where you may even come across brick-and-mortar Tostiloco snack shops. The snack is becoming popular in the U.S. as well, first appearing in San Diego and other border cities, before making its way to state fair menus and Mexican-inspired food trucks. The recipe is fully customizable, encompassing numerous chip varieties, sauces like chamoy and salsa Valentina, and toppings such as jicama, cucumber, flavored peanuts, pork rinds, tamarind candy, and even gummy bears. In the States, where Tostitos aren't commonly found in single-serve bags, Dorilocos is a popular alternative, using plain or Cool Ranch Doritos as the fried corn chip foundation and portable bag.

You don't even have to stick to corn chips; you could use potato chips with shredded veggies, salsa, ranch dressing, and honey-roasted peanuts for an Americanized twist. However you decide to elaborate a foundation of chips, the key to enjoying Tostilocos is to eat them out of the chip bag they're served in. The bag acts as a seasoning tool, to-go container, and resealable wrapper all in one.