What is the difference between Mexican oregano and oregano?

In this brief article, we are going to answer the question,”What is the difference between Mexican oregano and oregano?”, and discuss what Mexican oregano and oregano is, and the nutritional profile uses and health benefits of oregano.

What is the difference between Mexican oregano and oregano?

The difference between Mexican oregano and oregano is that Mexican oregano has flavours of lemon or citrus, whereas oregano is a spice of Italy and the Mediterranean which has mintu undertones.

Mexican oregano is well paired with Mexican dishes whereas oregano is mainly used in American foods such as grilled meat and stews, pasta sauces and Italian cuisine. 

What is oregano?

Oregano is a spice grown in Italy, Spai, Turkey, Egypt and Morocco. Oregano is a kind of mint and has a distinct taste based on where it is grown. The oregano which is grown in grease has an earthy flavour, the Italian oregano is much more gentle, and the one grown in turkey has an astringent taste. 

Oregano first originated in Greece where it was used as cough drops to reduce the amount of phlegm in lungs. Oregano was used for this purpose because it contains thymol and carvacrol which were responsible to reduce cough.

The taste also depends on the area of the field that the oregano has grown on. The patch of the field makes oregano bitter, sweet or spicy.

What is Mexican oregano?

Mexican oregano is a type of herb native to Mexico as well as Central and South America. It is also termed as Puerto Rican oregano and is popularly found in Tex-mex chilli, tacos, salsa, and many dishes of Latin America.

The genetic makeup of Mexican oregano is made of spanish thyme and Vulgare, a type of oregano herb which is also called wild marjoram. The oregano is harvested from a plant called Lippa graveolens.

The taste of the Mexican oregano should also have hints of licorice with a citrus flavour. This type of oregano is usually combined with spices such as cumin and chilli peppers when preparing Mexican foods.

What is the nutritional profile of oregano?

1 gram of dried leaves of oregano contain 2.7 calories, negligible amount of carbohydrates and fibre, 16 mg calcium, 1.5 mg phosphorus, 12.6 mg potassium and 2.4 mg of folate. Overcooking of oregano loses its functional properties as these herbs are sensitive to heat and other harsh conditions which also includes grinding. 

What are the uses and health benefits of oregano?

Oregano is used in diet as a form of supplements and as an aromatic oil in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industry. The bioactive compounds found in oregano, such as thymol, carvacrol, limonene, terpinen give the oregano its flavour, scent and other characteristics.

Oregano has long been used as a herbal medicine to treat skin sores, muscle aches, asthma, diarrhoea, cramping, cough and colds. It is also shown to fight against bacteria, alleviate inflammation, control blood sugars and regulate the levels of blood lipids and also fight against cancer.

The oils of oregano have been beneficial in reducing the risks of autoimmune arthritis also known as rheumatoid arthritis and asthma caused by allergies. Some scientific literature says that oregano may be beneficial to alleviate behaviour related to stress.

Oregano as a herbal medicine is also used for urinary tract infections commonly abbreviated as UTI’s, bronchitis, cramping during menstruation, bleeding after a tooth has been extracted, as an ointment for wounds, athletes foot, acne, warts, canker sores, insect bites and joint and muscle pains.

It is important to note that there is not enough scientific evidence that suggests these uses and health benefits. 

In the recent years of COVID-19, people who have lost their sense of taste and smell due to covid, have been advised to add oregano and other Italian herbs in their diets to regain their taste and smell. In some cases, this idea has proven to be beneficial but only for some people, and this again is not backed by any strong scientific evidence. 


In this brief article, we answered  the question,”What is the difference between Mexican oregano and oregano?”, and discussed what Mexican oregano and oregano is, and the nutritional profile uses and health benefits of oregano.



Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.