People Open Up About Their ‘Struggle’ Meals After Mexican Mom Says She’s ‘Used to Struggling’ With Food
TikTok user @academicmami, a “Mexicanista” tenure track professor and immigrant, spoke about the struggle of many fellow moms. “This has been our life,” she said, describing her experience growing up “poor” in Mexico.
“There were two things that were never missing in any meal that we had: frijoles and sopita,” she recalled.
Talking about the “struggle meals” of her childhood that she still gives to her own kids, the mother explained: “For so many of us, they will forever be the meals that feel like home.” In fact, she notes how her son and daughter love “struggle” foods like sopita, calling them her kids’ “favorite” foods.
“They can eat a whole pot of that without any complaints.”
A Mexican mother shared how “struggle meals” like sopitas still “feel like home”
The TikTok user started her video by talking about growing up with financial hardships in Mexico. She remembered how beans and sopita were part of every meal she had as a child.
Still, her elders would find ways to change up the sopitas and keep things interesting. “Sopita de fideo, de arroz, coditos, estrellitas, letras, any kind of sopita,” she recalled fondly.
She also described how her grandmother still makes frijoles and sopita every day. “My grandma, to this day, makes a fresh pot of beans and a fresh pot of sopa every single day. Regardless of what she is cooking on the side.”
As @academicmami explained, frijoles and sopita were served to keep them “full.” She described, “That’s what kept you full and that was cheap to make, so they had a bunch of that.”
Moreover, she said that any meat or vegetables on the table were scarce. “Growing up, we were served a small piece of meat if they had any to give us, and maybe like two or three pieces of veggies.”
“But you got plenty of sopita, plenty of frijoles, and tortillas of course.”
The mom explained how she got so used to these “struggle foods” growing up, she still often buys them today. “Because I grew up like that, I have this habit of buying the sopitas at the store when they’re on sale.”
“They used to be like five for $1, now they’re like five for $2,” she said. “I buy a bunch of them and I just like to have a bunch in my pantry, just in case.”
Today, the mother smiles at how sopita is one of her kids’ “favorite” meals
Interestingly, the TikTok user talked about how her sopita de fideo habit helped her family during the pandemic.
“At the beginning of the pandemic, when you couldn’t find food anywhere, guess who had a pantry full of sopitas and frijoles? Me,” she remembered. “We ate that for like three weeks.”
She also recalled how her family was “struggling” while she was still a graduate student. And yes, they had a bunch of sopitas during that time, too. “My oldest ate a lot of sopa de fideo when he was a toddler because we were struggling. We didn’t have a stable income.”
Whether or not these foods are “struggle meals,” she explains how they have become her kids “favorite.”
“Until this day, [my kids’] favorite meal is a bowl of sopa de fideo. They can eat an entire pot of that without any complaints,” she described.
Calling a pantry full of sopita “comforting” to her to this day, she referenced a famous Mexican saying: “When you have more mouths to feed, and you don’t have enough food for everyone, you put more water in the beans.”
“We always find a way,” she said. Even more incredible, she marveled at how her children love foods that were “meant to keep her full” as a child. Why? “Because it reminds them of home.”
As one X user wrote about a similar experience, “I watched my parents struggle, I watched my mom give me the last piece of tortilla and beans and tell me she wasn’t hungry.”
In fact, that’s what makes her so “proud” of her mom to this day:
And yes, whether or not you refer to them as struggle foods, sopita de fideo and frijoles are very, very good:
In fact, as another X user put it, they are “so glad” foods like quesadillas and buttered tortillas were their struggle foods:
For some, eating sopita de fideo just makes them “feel something” in their soul:
And bless all the moms who make any struggle food “sound yummier”:
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