Strawberry Raspado & Reboltijo Raspado at Raspado El Paraiso (Credit: Gloria Knott)
If you’ve lived in Tucson for a while and haven’t heard of or tried “raspados” we’re willing to look past this. But just this once. Bookmark this article for reference of some the best raspados spots in Tucson.
It’s not quite clear how or where raspados originated, but snow cones – second cousin to raspados – date back to 1919 when Samuel Bert began selling them at the Texas State Fair. On the other hand, shaved ice and snowballs were seen in eighteenth Century Baltimore when wagons acted as ice delivery trucks. Drivers would stop to give ice shavings to children, and parents would mix different ingredients on top.
Raspados come from the Spanish word, “raspar,” which translates to “scrape.” In the case of raspados, think scraped ice. But, if all that comes to mind is shaved ice and artificially flavored and colored syrup, get ready for a whole new world of Mexican treat mind expansion.
The frozen snack is typically made with real fruit juice and ice, served with chunks of fresh fruit, ice cream, and lechera, which is sweetened condensed milk.
You can go simple with your raspado, but the treat definitely doesn’t stop there. Some raspados offer sour additions, like lime juice, saladitos, chamoy, and many Mexican candies.
Since Tucson is rapidly reaching 110 degrees, there’s no better time to enjoy a raspado.
Below, and in alphabetical order, are 23 places to find raspados in Tucson. Where’s your favorite?
Crush Gourmet Raspados
Strawberry Banana Raspado at Crush Gourmet Raspados (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Although raspados are often found in a stand-alone shop, Crush Gourmet Raspados serves their raspados out of a food truck.
The flavors offered aren’t always the same, but Crush is the only place in Tucson with flavors like grape, guava, and tropical fruit – which is a blend of mango, pineapple, papaya, and strawberry. Crush also offers combined flavors such as strawberry banana, mango orange, and pineapple blueberry.
Check Crush’s event page on Facebook to see where they’ll be next.
For more information, visit the Crush Gourmet Raspados Facebook Page.
703 W. Irvington Road
Strawberry & Walnut Raspado at Dulceria Funland (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Funland is actually a party rental shop, offering jumping castles, water slides, and inflatable obstacle courses.
But next to the piñatas and party favors is the dulceria, Spanish for candy store. The dulceria is known for the Sandia Loca, Piña Loca, and Pepi-Sushi, which is a carved watermelon, pineapple, or cucumber stuffed with Mexican candies, lime, and tajin chili powder.
The fruit bowls are popular, but the raspados are no less worthy. With thirteen flavors and several specialty raspados, Funland is a good place to purchase a piñata and eat a raspado.
For more information, visit the Dulceria Funland Facebook Page.
GeMa Raspados & Delights
2860 W. Ina Road
Chemisse at Gema’s Raspados & Delights (Credit: Gloria Knott)
One of the only places serving raspados on Tucson’s northwest side, GeMa Raspados & Delights opened ten months ago.
GeMa’s is one of the only spots to offer the Hawaiiano, which is pineapple juice, bananas, coconut, vanilla ice cream, and a cherry on top.
They are also the only ones who serve the Chemisse, a vanilla-flavored raspado with ice cream, strawberry jelly, and a chocolate wafer.
For more information, visit the GeMa Raspados & Delights Facebook Page.
Jason’s Mexican Food
2400 N. Pantano Road
Tamarind Raspado at Jason’s Mexican Food (Credit: Gloria Knott)
With two store fronts, one on Tucson’s east side, and one on Oracle Road and Limberlost Drive, Jason’s Mexican Food offers fast service and classic Mexican dishes.
The menu features many specialty treats and six raspado flavors. And if you’re longing for more ice cream in your raspado, you can get an extra scoop for an additional 50 cents.
For more information, visit Jason’s Mexican Food on Yelp.
Juice N’ Fruit Raspados
3502 S. Sixth Avenue
Mangoyada at Juice N’ Fruit Raspados (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Serving over ten flavors of milkshakes, smoothies, fruit treats, and flavored water, Juice N’ Fruit also offers seventeen raspado flavors, including more uncommon flavors like cherry and lemon lime.
But the fan favorite is the Mangoyada, which is a bold-flavored raspado topped with a saladito, mango, chamoy, rielitos, serpentinas, and cacahuates, also known as Spanish peanuts.
Just don’t forget your tamanzela, a tamarind candy wrapped around a straw.
For more information, visit the Juice N’ Fruit Raspados Facebook Page.
1450 W. Saint Marys Road
Melon Raspado at La Fresita (Credit: Gloria Knott)
La Fresita offers several food menus and some pretty notable nachos.
Aside from the many meal options, La Fresita also offers nine raspado flavors, including bubble gum, which features chunks of actual bubble gum.
They also have a drive-thru, making it even easier for you to pick up your raspado of choice.
For more information, visit La Fresita West on Yelp.
4764 S. Sixth Avenue
Walnut Raspado at Marymar Raspados (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Marymar is known for their event space and catering services on Palo Verde Road, which typically host weddings and quinceañeras.
But Marymar also runs a separate business for raspados, which has been around since 2003.
Marymar Raspados make each of their raspados with 100% natural fruit juice, but one of the most popular raspados doesn’t require fruit juice because the flavor is nuez, also known as walnut.
The walnut raspado is filled with ice cream, shaved ice, walnuts, and a syrup made from crushed walnuts, milk, and sugar.
For more information, visit the Marymar Raspados Facebook Page.
Michoacan Taqueria Raspados
3235 N. Flowing Wells Road
Banana Raspado at Michoacan Taqueria Raspados (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Michoacan is the perfect blend of taqueria and raspados.
Start your experience with an order of flautas, tacos de asada, or Tosti-Nachos, a bag of salsa verde Tostitos with nacho cheese and jalapeños thrown on top.
In addition to serving food, Michoacan also offers milkshakes, slushes, and eleven raspado flavors, all made from natural fruit juice. The raspados are a little pricier here, but well worth it.
For more information, visit the Michoacan Taqueria Raspados Facebook Page.
Oasis Fruit Cones
4126 S. 12th Avenue
Strawberry and Mango Raspado at Oasis Fruit Cones (Credit: Gloria Knott)
With two locations in Tucson, one on Tucson’s southside and one in the west on Saint Marys Road, Oasis Fruit Cones is one of the most well-known places to find raspados.
Oasis offers fifteen flavors, but the heart of the shop is in the combined strawberry and mango raspado. With two scoops of vanilla ice cream and fresh strawberries and mangos, you can’t go wrong with the sweet and classic mixture.
For more information, visit the Oasis Fruit Cones Facebook Page.
Paradise Aqua Frescas
4500 N. Oracle Road
Watermelon Raspado at Paradise Aqua Frescas (Credit: Gloria Knott)
If you happen to be at Tucson Mall any time soon, you might find yourself walking around with a soft pretzel in one hand and a frozen lemonade in the other. Or maybe, gasp, a Cinnabon.
But it’s time to spice things up. Instead of a pretzel, opt for one of Paradise Aqua Frescas’ tortas, and trade your lemonade for a raspado.
Founded by the owners of Michoacan Taqueria Raspados, Paradise Aqua Frescas has two locations in the mall. One location mainly serves food, but their second floor location is raspados galore.
For more information, visit the Paradise Aqua Frescas on Yelp.
2936 E. 22nd Street
Macedonia at Peñas Raspados (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Conveniently located near Reid Park, Peñas Raspados offers raspados in eleven different flavors.
However, the Macedonias are the real star, which technically aren’t raspados at all because they don’t include any shaved ice.
But the Macedonia does feature two scoops of vanilla ice cream, fresh pineapple, strawberries, mango, coconut shavings, walnuts, and a drizzle of lechera.
For more information, visit the Peñas Raspados Facebook Page.
Raspados El Paraiso
5917 E. 22nd Street
Reboltijo Raspado at Raspados El Paraiso (Credit: Gloria Knott)
One of the few places to find raspados on Tucson’s east side, Raspados El Paraiso offers raspados in eleven flavors, but the most popular is the Reboltijo, which features your choice of raspado flavor with fresh fruit, saladitos, lime, chamoy, rielitos, and serpentinas.
Raspados El Paraiso is the only place in Tucson that serves the Reboltijo.
Other popular raspados include Sikily, chamoy with lime and rielitos, and Chamoyada, mango with lime and chamoy.
For more information, visit the Raspados El Paraiso Facebook Page.
Raspados La Niña
5835 S. Park Avenue
Strawberry & Mango Raspado at Raspados La Niña (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Located in a hot pink building that could pass as a tiny house, Raspados La Niña is hard to miss.
Similar to many raspado spots, Raspados La Niña offers about ten flavors, but the most popular is plain and simple — classic strawberry and mango with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and plenty of lechera on top.
For more information, visit the Raspados La Niña Facebook Page.
921 W. Congress Street
Prune Raspado at Sonoran Delights (Credit: Gloria Knott)
West Congress Street welcomed Sonoran Delights in 2005. Since then, Sonoran Delights has been serving breakfast, lunch, dinner, and more importantly, raspados.
The taqueria-style restaurant offers eleven raspado flavors and seven specialty raspados which include lime juice, chamoy, and toppings such as saladitos or rielitos.
For more information, visit the Sonoran Delights Facebook Page.
100 S. Avenida Del Convento
Mangoyada at Sonoran Sno-Cones (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Sonoran Sno-Cones offers two locations, one in the Mercado San Agustin and one in Tucson’s southside on Ajo and Sixth Avenue.
The Mangoyada can be found at several other spots, but every place makes it differently. At Sonoran Sno-Cones, guests can order a Mangoyada with mango, chamoy, lemon and lime juice, and rielitos.
Sonoran Sno-Cones was established in 1999 and is owned by the Robles family, the same family who owns Sonoran Delights.
For more information, visit sonoransnocones.com.
Sunny Daze Cafe
4980 S. Campbell Avenue
Pineapple Raspado at Sunny Daze Cafe (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Sunny Daze Cafe is an unlikely spot for raspados. Offering breakfast, lunch, and dinner with salads, soups, sandwiches, burgers, and all of your breakfast favorites, you wouldn’t be alone mistaking the place as just another diner.
Unlike other raspado spots, Sunny Daze doesn’t have an extensive list of flavors to choose from. The raspados actually aren’t even on the menu, but don’t be afraid to ask for one.
The raspados are stacked high with shaved ice and fruit and a scoop of ice cream hidden in the middle.
For more information, visit the Sunny Daze Cafe Facebook Page.
5012 S. 12th Avenue
Peach Raspado at Ta’ Raspado (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Located on 12th Avenue, Ta’ Raspado is a small raspado spot with indoor and outdoor seating. Items on the menu include ice cream specials like a banana split, lots of nacho options, and of course, raspados.
If you aren’t quite in the mood for the shaved ice packed in a raspado, Ta’ Raspado also offers escamocha, a Mexican version of fruit salad, or “fresas con crema,” which is a cup of strawberries smothered in cream.
For more information, visit the Ta’ Raspado Facebook Page.
Taqueria Pico De Gallo
2618 S. Sixth Avenue
Strawberry Raspado at Taqueria Pico De Gallo (Credit: Gloria Knott)
Located in a small yellow building on south Sixth Avenue, Taqueria Pico De Gallo is a must-visit in Tucson.
In addition to the classic Mexican dishes, Taqueria Pico De Gallo also offers six classic raspado flavors.
The raspados only come in one size, but one size is all you need.
For more information, visit Taqueria Pico De Gallo on Yelp.
Taqueria y Raspados Jason
6041 E. 22nd Street
La Niña at Taqueria y Raspados Jason (Credit: Gloria Knott)
The owners of Jason’s Mexican Food also own Taqueria y Raspados Jason, but the taqueria is a food truck.
Located on 22nd Street and Wilmot near Evergreen Flowers, Taqueria y Raspados Jason serves a slightly different menu than Jason’s Mexican Food.
For raspados, they offer the popular El Niño, which features tamarind, chamoy, lime, rielitos, and serpentinas. They also offer La Niña, which features the same ingredients, but in place of tamarind, they add pineapple chunks for a sweet and salty mixture.
For more information, visit the Taqueria y Raspados Jason Facebook Page.
5870 E. Broadway Blvd.
Lime Raspado at Tropicana Raspados (Credit: Gloria Knott)
If Tucson Mall is too far for you, don’t worry. Park Place Mall also has a raspado spot.
Conveniently located in between the food court and the movie theater, Tropicana Raspados is different than other places mentioned because they don’t add fresh fruit to their raspados.
But if you’re at the mall and longing for a raspado, Tropicana Raspados will cure your craving.
For more information, visit the Tropicana Raspados Facebook Page.
For something more savory, check out our article on Awesome Sonoran Hot Dogs In Tucson.