4 Authentic New Year’s Traditions

Across the globe there are many New Year traditions and superstitions people take part in to make sure their year starts off right. Here are 4 unique New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day traditions from Mexico and Latin America.

Lentils Bring Luck

Have some dried lentils to carry in your purse or pocket? They may just bring you luck. In Mexico this versatile legume is a symbol of abundance and good fortune. Many Mexicans will eat a spoonful of cooked lentils on New Year's day for good fortune, hand out dry lentils to guests for prosperity in the coming year or even leave a bag of lentils outside the front door on December 31st.

Check out our Spicy Lentils or Easy Red Lentil Soup recipes if you’d like a delicious and hearty way to add lentils to your New Year’s celebration.

A black plate of red and green bell peppers stuffed with saucy and cheesy Mindful Chik'n.

12 Grapes for Midnight

This tradition, which originated in Spain, is simple – eat 12 grapes on New Year’s Eve before the clock strikes 12 on New Year’s Eve, each grape signifying one wish for the new year. Since its origin, this tradition has spread across Mexico and Latin America, and varies slightly by country. For a fun and elegant take on this tradition, skewer 12 grapes and use them as a garnish for bubbly Perrier cocktails and mocktails in champagne flutes.

Bunches of grapes on a counter with lights and a champagne glass filled with grapes.

Pack Your Bags

Ever seen someone walking with a suitcase after midnight on New Year’s Eve? It’s quite likely across Mexico, Latin America and parts of the United States where tradition states that walking a suitcase around the house or block brings many travels in the New Year.

You can even pack your bag with a specific destination in mind. So grab some sunscreen, your swimsuit and a snack if you want to manifest an island getaway!

A parchment cone filled with dulce de leche popcorn.

Break the Buñuelos Bowl

Originating in Oaxaca, Mexico, this New Year's Eve tradition is perfect for any dreamers with a sweet tooth. Buñuelos are served in ceramic plates and bowls with syrup and sugar. After eating the buñuelos, make a wish and toss the dish behind you to break it. This tradition symbolizes breaking from the past and moving forward. Check out our Mini Buñuelos with Café de Olla Hot Fudge Sauce or Chocolate Buñuelos recipes if you’d like to add buñuelos to this year's New Year’s party.

A stack of chocolate buñuelos on brown plates and a red tablecloth near holly branches.