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El Taco Rustico (Photo by Anna Smirnova)

Foodie 15: Best Tacos in Tucson

Updated May 17, 2024

Tucson is quite the hotspot for taco trucks, shops, and stops. So we included a handful — 15 to be exact — of the best crunchy, soft, deconstructed, deep-fried, reimagined, fresh, and, frankly, fantastic tacos this side of the border. Check out our much larger tacos guide for more tasty options.

This Guide is part of a series that honors Tucson as the home of America’s Best Mexican Food

Learn how we create our guides here.

Taco Yaqui & Taco Lorenza Carne Asada at Aqui Con El Nene (Photo credit: Jackie Tran)

Aqui Con El Nene Restaurant

This is where you go when you want a taco that’s a bit different. The signature Taco Yaqui has enough flavor to knock your socks off. It’s got everything – roasted green chile, mesquite-grilled carne asada, mushrooms, stringy white cheese, and even bacon crumbles, all sandwiched between two tortillas.

Birria Tacos at Birrieria Guadalajara (Photo by Jackie Tran)

Birrieria Guadalajara

Think Costa Rican roadside luncheonette but in Tucson. The Birria Tacos are so tasty that you’ll want to take an extra batch home with you. Don’t forget about the Carne Asada Tacos, either – they’re a crowd favorite. Plus, there is a fleet of other tacos and burros on the menu, and the bunuelos are unbeatable.

Carnitas La Yoca

This place is all about the vibes and the tacos. They keep the menu streamlined and simple, though the flavors are anything but. As far as tacos go, they have them all. From Birria to Carnitas and Buche, the options cater to the masses. Incorporate the homemade salsas to give everything a little extra kick.

(Photo by Jackie Tran)

Cocteleria La Palma Mariscos Y Mas

This food truck is a hidden treasure in Tucson run by the Romero family. It has a loyal fanbase who can’t get enough of its delicious Fish and Shrimp Tacos. One bite and you’ll be hooked!

El Antojo Poblano

This new kid on the block is bringing the unique flavors of Puebla, Mexico right to Tucson. They’re dishing out some seriously delicious and unique eats from the towering Cemita Sandwich to the special Chalupas Poblanas. If you like your food with a kick, the salsas are not to be missed.

El Chinito Gordo (Photo by Jackie Tran)

El Chinito Gordo

This spot is all about authentic Mexican food passed down through generations. Their Crispy Tacos come with a variety of tasty fillings like ground beef, shredded beef, chicken, or potato. However, the true standout is the Soft Tacos, which range from Al Pastor to a Hot Cheetos version. Also, make sure you save room for the Quesabirria. It’s a crispy quesadilla packed with flavor.

Tacos at El Taco Rustico (Photo by Anna Smirnova)

El Taco Rustico

It’s hard not to appreciate Chef Juan Almanza’s journey from his early cooking days in Mexico to making waves in Tucson. His slow-cooked beef ribs and the quesabirria tacos are out-of-this-world good. It’s no wonder they’re cranking out over 100,000 of them a year. Plus, the menu hosts a variety of vegetarian and keto options and fantastic crispy flour tortillas, to boot.

Taco at La Indita (Photo credit: Jackie Tran)

La Indita

If you’re the adventurous type who loves to try different taco variations, La Indita is the place to be. They’re serving up unique dishes like a combo of a Chile Relleno, Chicken Enchilada, and Chicken Taco, not to mention their Tarascan Tacos and Indian Taco Special. Traditional Mexican meets creative cuisine — a true feast for any taco lover.

a plate of food
(Photos courtesy of Las Originales Carnitas El Michoacano)

Las Originales Carnitas El Michoacano

The food truck “Carnitas El Michoacano” officially completed its transition into its first brick-and-mortar location — rebranding to Las Originales Carnitas El Michoacano. With tacos and an array of salsas, the familiar and beloved menu is all there with the addition of an air-conditioned dining room. The menu has remained simple: Tacos de Carnitas, Tacos de Chicharron, Tacos de Birria, and Tacos de Cabeza. Give them a warm welcome in their new home!

a pizza sitting on top of a plate of food
(Photo courtesy of La Yaquesita Mexican Cuisine)

La Yaquesita Mexican Cuisine

Imagine getting a mighty whiff of delicious quesabirria while cruising around the Avenue, or perhaps being greeted by the heavenly aromatics of Sonoran tacos while attempting to parallel park your vehicle. That is what’s happening on the corner of Fourth Avenue and Sixth Street.

Barbacoa Tacos at Penca (Photo by Jackie Tran)

Penca

The dynamic duo of Patricia and Ron Schwabe brought this concept to life in 2013, serving up traditional Mexican cuisine with a dash of Spanish and French influences. The tacos are incredible — make sure to try the Rajas Con Hongos (veggie taco stuffed with grilled poblano chile, caramelized onion, roasted mushroom, and cashew crema) or the Guajolote (turkey, red cabbage, avocado, and chipotle crema).

Carne Asada Tacos at The Quesadillas (Photo by Jackie Tran)

The Quesadillas

This joint has been cooking up tasty tacos since 2015, and their Carne Asada is something else — think mesquite-grilled meat, fresh handmade tortillas, and quality ingredients. There are numerous other tacos to try like the Ribeye, Taco Jaas, Asadero, and Jalapeno Steak. They’ve even got a Keto Taco with a toasted cheese “tortilla.”

Chicken Rollies Taco from Rollies Mexican Patio (Photo credit: Jackie Tran)

Rollies Mexican Patio

Rollies is the spot for Rolled Tacos, Birria Ramen, and outstanding Birria Tacos. Mateo Otero has put his own spin on Tucson’s classic Mexican flavors. Their birria is slow-cooked for 14 hours until it’s so tender that it falls apart. We can’t get enough of their Quesabirria Tacos and Birria Ramen.

Carne Asada at Tacos Apson (Photo by Jackie Tran)

Tacos Apson – S. 12th Ave

A taco shop with some of the best tacos in Tucson, these guys have turned Sonoran Cooking into an art. The classics like Asada and Pastor Tacos are always a hit, but if you’re looking to branch out, the Lengua and Cabeza Tacos are definitely worth a try. Plus, they cater, so you can bring the epic taco menu to your next party.

Tacos from Taqueria Pico de Gallo (Photo by Jackie Tran)

Taqueria Pico de Gallo

A staple in South Tucson for over three decades thanks to its freshness and authenticity, the Baja-style fish tacos, Camaron (fried shrimp), and Cabeza tacos are crowd favorites. The real stars of the show, though, are the hand-pressed, yellow corn tortillas which are thick, sturdy, and leave you with a delightful corn aroma. Alongside the tortillas, the horchata, made fresh daily, and their eponymous spiced fruit salad, Pico de Gallo, ought to be enjoyed, as well.

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