Chili Mango Slushy

I have a delicious summery treat for you today, inspired by my heritage: chili mango slushy. My love of spicy food could be explained by many different factors, but I really think my addiction is hereditary. My nana eats jalapeรฑos like they’re baby bell peppers.

Cholula on every bite

I live for green corn tamales -our tamale guy makes THE BEST. Nana and mom would often ship them to Valdosta for me,

Tamale and refried beans

and whenever I stop by the panaderia, I’ll have a Mexican pink cookie. (For those in Tucson, La Estrella is fantastic.) The pink cookie has about 500g of sugar and tastes like a mixture of heaven and my childhood.

Mexican cookies


Growing up, in addition to the spiciness in my life, I was also surrounded by many unique flavors and treats. Some amazing, others… notsomuch. I’ll always remember my first saladito: a dried up prune completely saturated in salt, served atop half an orange. The orange served as a sweet “chaser” for the intense amount of sodium you were about to consume. My friends and I would buy them from the ice cream truck for $0.25, including the orange, and would have contests for whomever could finish it the fastest.


Along with many of the other random candies (like Pica! Blech), we also shared the watermelon and mango lollipops, covered in chili.

Rebanaditas- I found out much later that they contained small amounts of lead (yikesโ€ฆ)


And my all-time favorite, Vero mango, which are actually sold on Amazon.

Vero Mango

While my friends were at the water fountain, washing away the chili coating, I was savoring that part.

Chili Mango Slushy

Here’s one of my last attempts to enjoy mango -a summer fruit that somehow missed the radar for me this year- a refreshing, healthy treat, and a little ode to a flavor combo that I’ve always loved. Enjoy!

Chili Mango Slushy - a refreshing and healthy summer treat!


Chili Mango Slushy

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  • 1 C orange juice or water
  • 1 C frozen mango
  • 1/2 t chili powder
  • pinch cayenne
  • pinch salt
  • juice of half lime
  • 1 pack of Stevia (optional)


  1. Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth.
  2. Enjoy in a glass rimmed with chili sugar powder (lime juice around the edges of the glass, put mix of 1/2 chili powder and sugar or Stevia on a plate and twist the glass on the plate to coat).

Mango 2

This chili mango slushy is a refreshing and healthy summery treat! The flavor combination of chili and fruit has been one of my favorites since childhood.

What is a unique treat or candy that you loved growing up?

Random story: they sell lengua, which is beef tongue, at many Tucson grocery stores in the butcher area. I remember picking out my favorite Mexican candies, and looking over towards the butcher section… it would creep me out. Cow tongue is a delicacy, and my aunt will often cook it up and make burritos. When I was little, my nanas used to tell me that if I stuck my tongue out, my aunt would cook it. Needless to say, I didn’t stick my tongue out ๐Ÿ˜‰

Checkout these other summery treats:

Mango Mojito Sorbet

S’Mores in a Jar

Strawberry Crumble with Coconut Whip

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  1. Amelia on August 30, 2012 at 11:51 am

    This looks delish! It reminds me of a place in my hometown of Memphis that sells desserts. They have a ton of different paletas, including mango and pineapple chili ones. They are insanely good. Love that spicy stuff!!

  2. Staci on August 30, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    I LOVED those watermelon and mango suckers with the chili on it!! I also love in the summer time there will be a guy on the corner with a bag of freshly chopped mango, cucumber, pineapple and some others and he puts in the “amazing chili lime concotion that makes anything taste better” LOL

  3. Desi Schlect on August 30, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    That photo of the saladito immediately awoke my salivary glands!! The smell of lengua boiling away at my grandmotherโ€™s house is a smell I hated as a child, but fondly remember her by today.

  4. shayna on August 30, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    Saladitos are like rock salt plum! In Hawaii, they have these Japanese treats where they take a plum, pit and all, and cure it in rock salt. So. Dang. Good. We ate them at the bars as pupus with our beers. I’m lucky I have low blood pressure ๐Ÿ™‚

    • pluvk on August 30, 2012 at 6:20 pm

      I was thinking the same thing! I was like, “Wow, they got li hing mui over there?” ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Gennt Gaus on August 30, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    I loooved those chile- watermelon suckers, and the squishy lucas you squeezed out of the holes. Also, the spicy strawberry balls. Remember in middle school when people would sell Mexican candy out of their backpacks?! This post totally took me back.

  6. H on August 30, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    Something I’ve been curious about- do you speak Spanish?

  7. Michelle @ Eat Move Balance on August 30, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    Have you ever had Birch Beer??? It’s like root beer, but even better! We used to have it as a treat growing up–but I haven’t seen it in years.

  8. Beks on August 30, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    Haha! You have such great anecdotes from your childhood. That’s awesome. I’m convinced that my love of sausage and saurkraut and my German heritage is what makes me a non-picky eater. My dad’s super picky, as is my sis, whereas my mom and I will try almost anything.

  9. Sheena on August 30, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    The chili-mango slushy is so inspired! Way to share your heritage and contribute some unique content to the bloggy world ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Sam @ Better With Sprinkles on August 30, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    I was obsessed with those marshmallow bananas as a kid – does that count as unique?

    Pretty much any candy/ice cream/chocolate you could find in a variety store would make me happy. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Alyssa on August 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    Not to be creepy, but I totally love your blog more now that youve shared these stories. I totally relate growing up in san diego we had a “tiendita” next to my grandmas house that had all the good stuff and would literally stop by every day after school for the same treats. I am going to try this recipe this weekend for sure!!!

  12. Stephanie @ Steph's on August 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm

    That looks like an awesome recipe to try! I’m going to pin it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  13. Stacy on August 30, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    My grandmother would always buy us penny candy at our little country store. It was a stick candy with stripes that is flavored and I always bought Root Beer. Cracker Barrel sells them now for 10 cents or so. Reminds me of my grandmother so much!

  14. Danielle@cleanfoodcreativefitness on August 30, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    This sounds amazing! I love the spicy sweet combination! Frozen mango is the best in smoothies! I used to love bull’s eyes when I was younger (the caramel circles with the cream in them) only because my Nana used to love them!

  15. Chelsa on August 30, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    this sounds so good. I am a spicy fan too ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Rachel on August 30, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    oh gosh, I can’t stomach spicy food hahaha I had a pinch (a PINCH like not even enough to give flavor haha) of cayenne and practically died hahaha

  17. Kari on August 30, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    Just made Amazeballs for the first time ever, and I’m a little upset I didnt try earlier, they are Amaze(balls)!

  18. Jenniemarie on August 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    I just found your blog today and this post brought back so many memories. I love, love, love pink cookies. When I was younger a friend’s parents owned a panaderia and I would beg him to bring them to me…and he did! Oddly, I didn’t marry him ๐Ÿ˜‰ Most of our meals are spicy and if they are not my husband will automatically add some sort of spice to it. I mean who doesn’t eat white rice with hot sauce right?
    I look forward to reading more.

  19. Susana on August 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    LOVE this post! Ive been reading for almost a year and always enjoy reading those tid bits you share about your heritage, your nana, and mom. Being mexican, I can relate to all the things you mentioned. Wow, I miss being a kid!!!

  20. Emily @ Glitz Glam Granola on August 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    Ohh i love hearing about the unique treats you had growing up- I don’t think I’ve ever tried any of those! I do LOVE tamales though and if I ever come to AZ, I’m going to have to find your tamale man! And this slushie looks so good! It could also easily turn into a margarita ๐Ÿ˜‰ Just saying…

  21. Katie on August 30, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    This general idea works really well as a margarita too (except I use Tajin on the rim in that case).

  22. Alexandrina @ The Cardio Queen on August 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    Estrella bakery is my favorite! Always have to get some cochitos when I’m back home! Yum!

  23. Mallory Padron on August 30, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    I die for marranitos. We’d be panaderia best friends– you can eat the pink cookies and I get the piggies!

    • Fitnessista on August 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm

      haha my mom loves those too ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Paige @ Running Around Normal on August 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    I love drinks that have a little surprise spice to ’em! Love spicy margaritas, and I bet this one’s yummy, too ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Fitnessista on August 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm

      i love spicy margaritas too!

  25. Adrienne on August 30, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Just a safety precaution- many top food retailers have recalled mangoes today because of over 100 people getting samonella poisoning from the fruit.

    Make sure you check the labels on your mangoes today. :\

    • Fitnessista on August 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm

      thank you for the head’s up! ours were frozen from trader joe’s but we finished off the bag this am

  26. Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie on August 30, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    I looovee Mexican food, I just wish I could handle spice better. I’m such a wimp. ;p

  27. Averie @ Averie Cooks on August 30, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    Sweet with heat, love the combo. And anything with mango! Mmmmm, good stuff!

  28. Hillary on August 30, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Now you have me thinking of all the “ethnic” foods we enjoyed as kids. One of my favorites was my great-aunt’s homemade gefilte fish. We had it as an appetizer for every single holiday, and I absolutely loved it (especially served with a big scoop of horseradish). I didn’t realize that this was one of those “weird” foods until I got to college and my roommates wouldn’t let me eat it in the room!

  29. paula on August 30, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    Omg Gina, it must be a “latin thang” because I remember eating those very candies and especially the saladito except we would use a lemon instead of an orange. And don’t even get me started about the puerquitos from the panaderia. I love going in the mexican bakery. Reminds me of my childhood. Thanks for sharing those memories.

  30. Jennifer on August 30, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    I grew up in South Texas and live in South East Texas so we have Tex-Mex variations of all of the things you
    wrote about. Tamales and the pink cookies have always been my favs. But we do a beef/pork combo for
    Tamales and they tend to be much smaller in size than the ones you post. When I was little there was also
    this candy at a Tex-Mex restaurant we used to eat at and I have never seen it anywhere else. When you’d
    finish your meal they would bring you this little white pouch like thing with this really sweet crumble-y light
    brown sugar/caramel treat. I dream of that sometimes and wish I could find a recipe for it.

    I don’t think it’s really unique but the one thing that signifies childhood for me is my granny’s prune kolaches.
    They also used to be her ‘test’ with the boys and then men we’d bring over. If he would try a prune kolache
    he was a keeper. Even though I make them myself all the time now nothing will ever taste like hers did.

  31. Simone on August 30, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    I went to boarding school growing up and lived with a girl from Hong Kong and she used to bring these little candies back every time she went back and I would raid her suitcase, like a good friend :), they were called white rabbits… OMG! they were amazing… what I wouldn’t do for a white rabbit now mmmm

  32. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on August 30, 2012 at 9:06 pm

    This looks really good! I’m not a fan of super spicy foods but I love sweet foods with just a hint of spice. My mom makes these cookies called Mayan chocolate sparklers (basically chocolate cookies with a bit of cayenne) and they’re amazing!

  33. Elizabeth M. on August 30, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Omg this sounds amazing!! I LOVE spicy food. I seriously almost three a hissy fit at work today because the cafeteria was out of Cholula and I had egg whites for breakfast. I don’t know where I get my love of spice from, no one else in my family loves it like I do, I keep red pepper flakes in my purse for crying out loud!!

  34. Tenecia on August 30, 2012 at 11:12 pm

    I grew up on the southside of Tucson so I thought everyone knew about saladitos stuck in the middle of oranges & lemons. Imagine my surprise when I learned not everyone knew what a “saladito” was! ๐Ÿ™‚ I work downtown and squealed in delight when I went into Rae’s Place on Stone & saw they were selling saladitos & oranges! I love walking there, buying an orange, and walking back to my job with my salty snack!


  35. Jess on August 31, 2012 at 1:59 am

    Love mango BUT not spice, so I couldn’t handle it! I have had chili chocolate, but it wasn’t so bad as the chocolate mellowed down the heat.

  36. Kim @ Baby Steps to Balance on August 31, 2012 at 8:48 am

    I LOOOVE spicy food as well. Whenever I order Thai extra extra 5 star spicy the server always looks at me funny like I don’t know what I am getting myself it is sooooo good. I have a friend who makes Pagogi and always makes it extra spicy for me to see how much I can take but I never back down!

  37. kim@hungryhealthygirl on August 31, 2012 at 9:38 am

    Never had any of the sweet and spicy, but that chili mango slushy looks delicious!

  38. Natalie @ FreshLifeFindings on August 31, 2012 at 10:22 am

    Wow this looks awesome! I wish I had enough tolerance for spicy things, it’s amazing how you can eat so much and it not make your mouth on fire! My husband likes to try the spiciest sauces whenever we go out to eat. I did however use to eat FireBall candies when I was young.

  39. Sierra on August 31, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    My mom is 1/4 Mexican and has no connection with her culture and she hates it. She doesn’t speak a word of Spanish or have any Mexican childhood favorites. After reading this, I’m also a little disappointed. I love Mexican culture and wish we had some connection to that part of our history. Selfishly, I really like Mexican food and wish she knew some recipes that have been passed down for generations or something. I also crazy about spicy food, so that may be a cultural trait…haha

    Thanks for sharing!

  40. Sonia the Mexigarian on August 31, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    love love love the little piggy breads. well any mexican bread is delish, but the piggies always made me smile and still do ๐Ÿ™‚ mom picks some up for me whenever she makes it to the panderia.

    and lengua freaks me out. we were just discussing the other day how my mom used to make it for my older sister before she went vegetarian. still won’t touch that dish. ick.

    • Fitnessista on August 31, 2012 at 10:38 pm

      i love the piggies too, but the pink cookies… steal my heart ๐Ÿ™‚

  41. Marissa on September 1, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    These treats take me back to my childhood. When I was pregnant with my daughter, I could not get enough of the mango chile lollipops. I got a funny look at the corner store when I bought 20 of them at a time. I later found chewy mango chile candies that were just as delicious. I still buy the saladitos every few years.

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