Dine at Latino- and Latina-Owned Restaurants in Austin
While in Austin, you must pay homage to the diverse and expansive food culture. From breakfast tacos and Tex-Mex to Latin American and Interior Mexican cuisine, Austin has tons of incredible dining spots perfect for hanging out with friends, sipping margaritas or mezcal and pretending you’re going to do something productive that day.
Veracruz All Natural Breakfast Taco. Credit @burgerchild.
For over 50 years, Cisco’s has been an iconic East Austin breakfast go-to. Try their migas, chorizo and carne guisada or build your own breakfast taco—you can’t go wrong. Since 1962, Joe’s Bakery & Coffee Shop has been serving up some of the best breakfast tacos in Austin. Ingredients are fresh, the tortillas are all handmade and breakfast is served all day. Plus, after you eat your fill of tacos, you can swing by their bakery counter for a pan Mexicano. Sisters Reyna and Maritza Vazquez are known for using fresh ingredients and classic flavors at their restaurant, Veracruz All Natural. This local favorite has multiple locations around town. Barbecue is a long-standing tradition for the Vidal family, who own and operate Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ. Enjoy delicious smoked meats piled on a fresh, hand-rolled flour tortilla, topped off with spicy salsa.
Check out even more breakfast tacos here.
Matt's El Rancho. Credit Jody Horton.
In Austin, queso is a staple. This dippable, melty cheese is a delicacy you can find on every corner. Maria’s Taco Xpress is as eclectic as it is delicious, and owner Maria Corbalan has been deemed “South Austin’s Taco Queen.” On Sundays, you can’t miss their Hippie Church, live gospel and tacos. What more can you ask for? When Matt and Janie Martinez opened their Tex-Mex restaurant Matt’s El Rancho in 1952, it seated only 40 customers. They have since expanded seating to more than 500 customers, and El Rancho still makes everything from scratch to offer the freshest tortillas and chips around. Michael Rypka decided to chase his dreams and bet his life savings on great Tex-Mex street food by opening a food trailer. At first, he gave out free chips and salsa to invite people to try his food. Now Torchy’s Tacos is a renowned franchise with 30 stores.
Check out even more killer quesos here.
Miguel Vidal. Courtesy of Valentina's Tex Mex BBQ.
DK Maria’s brings vibrant flavors to classic dishes Texans know and love. Every plate was inspired by DK Maria herself, a woman of rich heritage and a spicy lifestyle. Try the signature brisket enchiladas, topped with chipotle sauce and chile con queso. This Austin eatery is known for its goofy attitude (check out the #ElArroyoSign). But one thing they take very seriously is their food. Pop in to El Arroyo for dishes like the green chile chicken chimichanga or pulled pork burritos. Two Austin staples in one, Valentina’s Tex-Mex BBQ takes Tex-Mex quite literally. The simple but unique menu will not disappoint, with your choice of big Tex barbecue and scrumptious Mex fare. Select from tempting taco fillings like smoked brisket topped with guacamole, tomato serrano salsa and sea salt, all rolled up in a freshly made flour tortilla.
Check out even more ATX-Mex here.
Fonda San Miguel. Credit Ashlyn Allison.
From Bolivian-bred Carlos Rivero and Mexico City-bred Alma Alcocer, El Alma serves fresh and bold Mexican flavors in a cozy restaurant featuring an expansive outdoor patio. Proudly serving Mexican cuisine and traditional Yucatecan and Veracruzano fare, it’s no wonder Fonda San Miguell was crowned one of America’s 50 Best Mexican Restaurants. Not only does Rosita’s Al Pastor offer one of our favorite salsas in town (with árbol and tomatillo chiles), but she also carves the al pastor meat straight from the trompo. Oh, and the truck is open ’til 3am in case you need a late taco fix. Taco More is an authentic and casual Mexican joint with two locations in Austin. Even though they’re known for their tacos and caldos, their salsa bar is said to be the best in town.
La Condesa. Credit Briana Balducci.
An Austin original with a modern take on classic Mexican chicken al carbón, Fresa’s Chicken Al Carbon wood-grilled meals, authentic salsas and satisfying sides are outstanding. However, you can’t go to Fresa’s without dipping into one of their famously melty quesos. An ATX-Mex spot with breezy beach resort vibes, Grizzelda’s fires up Central Mexican cuisine with a Texas influence and craveworthy house-made tortillas. Their Sunday brunch is one of the best ways to end your weekend. ATX Cocina is focused on clean, modern Mexican dishes. ATX processes its own masa in-house, sourcing its heirloom corn from small family farms in Mexico. Try the patos locos tacos heaped with duck carnitas, citrus mojo and cilantro salad. A modern Mexican restaurant in Austin’s 2ND Street District, La Condesa features Mexican dishes made with fresh, locally sourced ingredients. It also features a bar with the most extensive collection of tequila and mezcal in the city.
Courtesy of Buenos Aires Cafe.
Enjoy freshly made Brazilian cuisine with a Texas twist at Boteco, a local favorite East Austin food truck. Buenos Aires Café features authentic Argentinian cuisine from empanadas to pastel de papas. With two locations in Austin, it’s easy to get your fix of Argentinian classics. Casa Colombia offers some of the best Colombian cuisine in Austin. They have a dog-friendly patio, a wonderful happy hour and feature live music every Friday night. On Saturdays, Peruvian restaurant Lima Criolla comes alive with futbol viewing parties thanks to their big projector screen. Enjoy their authentic Peruvian dishes and drinks from the Pisco bar as you cheer on your team. We also recommend trying Cuba512, a casual eatery serving up classic Cuban sandwiches and drinks, located in South Austin.
El Naranjo Cocktails & Margaritas. Credit Resplendent Hospitality.
Comedor — named one of Esquire’s best new restaurants — serves cutting-edge Mexican cuisine in a chic industrial setting. Witness their inventive take on traditional dishes, such as the bone marrow tacos laced with smoked butter. Order the Oaxaca margarita, mixed with Reposado tequila, crema mezcal, Cointreau, and lemon and lime juices. Kick back in the greenhouse at the casual De Nada Cantina and order the El Chingon, touted as the “Cadillac of margaritas.” It’s mixed with El Tesoro Silver Tequila (made especially for De Nada) and Mathilde XO. Pair one of El Naranjo's award-winning mole dishes (inspired by the owners’ Oaxacan roots) with the Durazno margarita made with Cimarron Silver tequila, white peach puree, Naranja liqueur and fresh-squeezed lime juice.
Check out even more places for margaritas here.
Hay Elotes. Courtesy @infatuation_atx.
Desserts & Treats
After indulging in savory Tex-Mex and Latin American dishes, it's only right to balance everything out with a sweet treat. Treat yourself to a decedent mangonada topped with strawberries, a sour belt, chamoy and chili sauce from Hay Elotes on Austin's east side. Family-owned Mi Tradicion Bakery is a panaderia on steroids. Visit one of their two locations for pan dulces and different flavored tres leches cakes. Maha Coffee is a gluten-free cafe serving up yummy bakes, creaft coffee and specialty teas. The cinnamon buns are a must try and are delicious paired with their Kali Mocha.
Check out some of Austin's top fruterías here.