Fantastic Mexican in [Matawan, NJ]

La Guadalupe Grocery is a small family-owned bodega for Mexican products on Main St. in Matawan, which I’ve passed by a million times. I recently stopped in because I saw the photo of Mexican dishes on the window, and checked it out.

La Guadalupe Grocery
118 Main St
Matawan, NJ 07747

You enter and go straight past the cashier to the back, where there are a few tables and a small kitchen. Today, by the kitchen, I saw the lady working pressing masa into tortillas, which of course is always a good sign in a Mexican restaurant.

I’ve been here once before to grab a menu and some weekend tamales, which were extremely tasty.

This evening, I went with a tlayuda with carne asada. Tlayudas are the massive “Mexican pizzas” from Oaxaca, and thís one was easily enough for two people for $13. Even the 3 salsas on the side were each unique and packed tons of flavor. Gladly will return again.



I AM SO EXCITED TO TRY THIS! Sorry, for yelling!


Are the tamales all day on the weekend or just for breakfast?

Just for breakfast, I showed up at 2pm one weekend and they were sold out, around 9 am another weekend and I had to wait 5 minutes for fresh ones to be made. Places like Antojitos Mexicanos (previously Diego’s) on Maple Place has tamales later, but they are made earlier in the day as well.

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Went today at 9AM. They had only pork tamales (no chicken), but that was fine. Three for $5 makes a good breakfast. I also ordered coffee; it was a giant cup. The server added milk and sugar without asking, so if you don’t want them, be sure to say so. Coffee and a can of Jumex came to $3; no matter how you split that, it’s cheap. We’ll be back!

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How were the tamales? I hope to get there this weekend.

We’re the wrong people to ask–we like too many things. (Mark’s response, not original with me.)

Mark liked the texture of the polenta. The meat was a little greasy, and there was either a hair or a leaf fiber in one of them.

(Mark also says the bathroom was not particularly tidy. He gives the food 4 out of 5 and the cleanliness 3 out of 5. FWIW, we’ve eaten food served to us on a leaf on a railway platform in India, so we’re not necessarily the best people to ask about sanitation either.)

Observation: People get all bent out of shape about a single hair, but will happily eat an entire portion of dead animal flesh. In this case, if it was a hair, it went in before cooking. And how many times have you found one of your hairs in something you’ve cooked?

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Glad you liked it and that the bathrooms were ‘serviceable’ as my husband would say.

Ugh, I find my hair in my cooking WAY more than I would prefer. I’ll tell you that!


Heading there tomorrow. This sounds really good.

The pork version is delicious. What a interesting kitchen setup.