How to Start a Tamalería Business

Dare to start with this business model that will give you sales beyond Candlemas Day.

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This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

By Marissa Sánchez


The food and beverage industry is one of the most dynamic in Mexico. And the figures confirm it: restaurants (outside a pandemic) generate more than 1.4% of the national GDP and 13% of the tourism GDP.

For its part, the production of tamales in the country dates back to pre-Hispanic times. Thus, cultures such as the Mayan included the consumption of this food in rituals to purify its seeds at the beginning of the agricultural cycle. Back then, corn and banana leaves were used, and they were steamed. While the arrival of sugar in our diet (after colonization) enriched the variety of tamales, which some estimate between 500 and five thousand.

Today, in addition to its consumption either at breakfast, lunch or dinner, as a main dish or a treat, during the week or Saturdays and Sundays, this food becomes the main protagonist every February 2. It is about Candlemas Day, the date on which Mexicans enjoy tamales, courtesy of those who obtained “the child” in the rosca de Reyes.

Today is Candlemas Day and tamales are eaten! / Image:


This business idea consists of a tamalería, that is, an establishment of at least 25 square meters for the sale and consumption of a wide variety of tamales. This requires an initial investment of $ 300,000, which includes the fitting out of a kitchen with its respective utensils, supplies, bar and counter, cash register, benches, tables and chairs. In addition to the training of personnel for the preparation of tamales. The objective is to professionalize this traditional business that is often located on the street without following basic hygiene rules.

Locate your tamalería near schools, offices and residential areas. Ideally it should be easily accessible by pedestrians and vehicles. Another key to this business is the opening hours: try to open from 6 am and close until 9 pm. Identify peak hours so that your employees intensify their activity and can be quick to respond. And take advantage of sales downtime to focus on production.

Do not forget that you will conquer your clients with your stomach. So try to have a wide variety or rotation of options so that people never leave empty-handed. See mole tamales, green, sliced, sweet, cake, as well as regional varieties. Another way to increase your income is to offer home delivery or special attention for events.

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