Best Tacos in America To Eat

If tacos are your thing, you’re in for a treat. The best taco restaurants in the world may be found in America. In practically every state, you can find a wide variety of mouthwatering tacos, from traditional street food to gourmet innovations. There is a great taco spot for you, regardless of whether you enjoy your tacos with conventional fillings like carne asada, al pastor, or carnitas or you like to explore new and unique flavors.

three pork carnitas street tacos in yellow corn tortilla with avocado

Some of the top taco restaurants in America are run by small, close-knit families, while others are well-known franchises with devoted patrons.

However, they also serve great tacos that are sure to sate your cravings, so that is one thing they all have in common.

So you’re in luck if you’re looking for the top tacos in America.

You can pick a taco joint that will satisfy your cravings and make you happy thanks to the wonderful selections available.

We’ll look at some of the top taco spots in America in this post, from traditional taquerias to hip eateries that modernize basic Mexican dishes.

The Importance of Tacos in America

In America, tacos are more than just a tasty food item. They have grown increasingly popular throughout time and are now a fundamental component of American cuisine.

Pulled pork tacos with salsa, guacamole and lime, with copy space

Here are some explanations for why tacos are so significant to Americans:


Tacos are so widely consumed in America in part because of their adaptability. Cheese, meat, seafood, vegetables, and other components can all be used to make tacos.

To create a distinctive flavor profile, you can add your preferred toppings, such as salsa, guacamole, and sour cream.

Tacos can also be cooked with a variety of tortillas, including corn, flour, and even lettuce leaves, to accommodate a variety of dietary requirements.


Tacos’ accessibility is another factor contributing to their popularity in the United States.

Tacos are available practically everywhere in the nation, from high-end restaurants to food trucks and street vendors.

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Tacos are a preferred food for those on a budget because they are also reasonably priced.

Cultural Significance

In America, tacos have a long cultural past, especially in the Southwest, where Mexican culture has had a big impact.

Tacos are an example of the blending of Mexican and American cultures and have come to reflect the diversity of the nation.

People can now connect with their cultural heritage and experience new cuisines through tacos.

Finally, tacos have established themselves as a fundamental component of American cuisine.

They are a preferred option for people from many backgrounds due to their adaptability, accessibility, and cultural significance.

There is no doubting the influence tacos have had on the American culinary landscape, whether you prefer traditional tacos or contemporary versions.

Criteria for the Best Tacos

There are a number of things to take into account while trying to select the greatest tacos in America.

Close up of fresh fish tacos with coleslaw, avocado, salsa and lime

The following standards should be kept in mind:

1. Authenticity

The authenticity of a taco is among the most crucial elements in assessing its excellence. A perfect taco should be created with real ingredients and cooked the old-fashioned way.

This entails using top-notch, fresh ingredients—like freshly prepared tortillas—and perfectly preparing the meat or filling.

2. Flavor

The flavor of the tacos is a crucial consideration while choosing the best ones. An excellent taco ought to be flavorful and have the ideal ratio of spices, herbs, and other flavors.

No matter if you like your tacos mild or spicy, the tastes ought to be distinct and enduring.

3. Texture

When it comes to tacos, texture is another crucial factor. The shell of the perfect taco should be crunchy yet tender, and the filling should be soft and chewy.

Without being overly greasy or dry, the filling should be tasty and moist.

4. Variety

Variety is a further consideration. The top taco joints provide a wide selection of tacos, including classics like carne asada and al pastor as well as more unusual and creative choices.

This gives you the opportunity to experiment with various foods and flavors.

5. Value

The final factor to take into account when looking for the greatest tacos is price.

While you don’t want to skimp on quality in order to save money, you also don’t want to pay too much for a taco that falls short of your standards.

The top taco joints include ample quantities, premium ingredients, and exceptional value for the money.

You can find the best tacos in America and have a really authentic and delectable gastronomic experience by keeping these criteria in mind.

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Top Taco Places in America

You’re in luck if you like tacos since America has some of the top taco restaurants in the world.

Outdoor view of Torchy's Tacos tex mex restaurant in Austin

Everyone can find something they enjoy, from authentic Mexican taquerias to fusion taco restaurants.

The following are some of the best taco restaurants you should visit:

Los Tacos No.1 (New York, NY)

Los Tacos No.1 is a must-stop taco place in New York City and is situated in Chelsea Market. They specialize in making homemade tortillas and fresh ingredients for authentic Mexican tacos.

Make sure to top your tacos with some of their delectable guacamole and order the carne asada and adobada.

Ed Fernandez Restaurant Birrieria (San Diego, CA)

You must visit the Ed Fernandez Restaurant Birrieria if you’re in San Diego. Since 2005, this restaurant has been offering wonderful birria tacos, which are a neighborhood favorite.

On homemade tortillas with onions, cilantro, and a side of consommé for dipping, the birria is slow-cooked for many hours.

La Taqueria (San Francisco, CA)

Since 1973, La Taqueria has been a San Francisco landmark and a top place to have tacos.

Their famous carnitas tacos have delicious, slow-cooked pork and are topped with onions, cilantro, and salsa.

The relaxed and informal ambiance makes it the ideal place for a quick lunch or dinner.

Taqueria El Ranchito (Chicago, IL)

A family-run taco restaurant called Taqueria El Ranchito is located in Chicago’s Little Village.

They offer authentic Mexican fare such as pastor, beef asada, and lengua tacos.

Fresh ingredients are used to make the tacos, which are then placed on homemade tortillas. To wash it all down, don’t forget to sample their excellent horchata.

Torchy’s Tacos (Austin, TX)

Texas residents love Torchy’s Tacos, and with good reason. They provide inventive and delectable tacos like the Brushfire (Jamaican jerk chicken, grilled jalapenos, and mango) and the Trailer Park (fried chicken, green chilies, and queso).

The lively and enjoyable ambiance makes it the ideal location for a night out with friends.

These are only a select few of the best taco restaurants in America. There is a great taco joint waiting for you whether you’re in Texas, New York, California, Illinois, or Illinois.

The Role of Authenticity

The authenticity of tacos is a key factor in deciding which are the best in America.

three carne asada mexican street tacos in corn tortilla with lime

The Americanized style of tacos that you can encounter in numerous fast-food places is not an authentic taco.

Fresh ingredients like corn tortillas, grilled meats, and basic garnishes like onions, cilantro, and lime are used to make authentic tacos.

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Unlike their Americanized counterparts, they are not slathered in cheese, lettuce, and sour cream.

The region of Mexico where a taco is from can affect how authentic it is. For instance, tacos al pastor are a prominent street meal in Mexico City, although fish tacos are more prevalent towards the coast.

It’s crucial to take taco authenticity into account when looking for the best tacos in America.

Authentic Mexican tacos have served as a source of inspiration for numerous restaurants and food trucks around the nation.

These fusion tacos may not be real, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be tasty in their own right.

Finding a restaurant or food truck that adheres to the traditional preparation and ingredients is crucial if you’re searching for the greatest authentic tacos.

In conclusion, authenticity is key in deciding which tacos are the greatest in America.

It’s crucial to respect the authenticity of the taco and the culture it represents, whether you enjoy the straightforwardness of traditional tacos or the fusion of other flavors.

Frequently Asked Questions

healthy vegan jackfruit tacos

What Makes a Good Taco?

A good taco has a few key components. First, the tortilla should be fresh and ideally made on the premises. Corn tortillas are traditional, but some places use flour tortillas. The filling should be flavorful and balanced, and the toppings should complement the filling. Some popular toppings include onions, cilantro, salsa, and lime juice. Finally, a good taco should be easy to eat and not fall apart.

What Are Some Popular Types of Tacos?

Tacos come in many varieties, but some of the most popular types include:
Carne asada: grilled beef
Al pastor: marinated pork cooked on a spit
Carnitas: slow-cooked pork
Fish tacos: battered or grilled fish
Vegetarian tacos: filled with beans, vegetables, or tofu

Where Can I Find the Best Tacos in America?

There are many great taco places across the United States. Some of the best include:
El Gordo in Las Vegas, Nevada
La Taqueria in San Francisco, California
Torchy’s Tacos in Austin, Texas
Carnitas Uruapan in Chicago, Illinois
Taqueria El Charro in Tucson, Arizona

Are Tacos Healthy?

Tacos can be a healthy meal option if made with fresh, whole ingredients. Corn tortillas are a good source of fiber, and fillings like grilled chicken or fish can be a good source of protein. However, some taco fillings can be high in fat and calories, so it’s important to choose your toppings wisely.

How Do I Eat a Taco?

There’s no one right way to eat a taco, but here are a few tips:
Hold the taco with both hands.
Take a small bite from the end of the taco.
Tilt your head slightly and take another bite from the other end.
Continue eating in this way, rotating the taco as necessary to prevent it from falling apart.
Enjoy your taco adventure!

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Written by Brian Nagele

Brian attended West Virginia University, then started his career in the IT industry before following his passion for marketing and hospitality. He has over 20 years experience in the restaurant and bar industry.

As a former restaurant owner, he knows about running a food business and loves to eat and enjoy cocktails on a regular basis. He constantly travels to new cities tasting and reviewing the most popular spots.

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