Top 20 places for Mexican food in San Diego (that you NEED to try!)

June 22, 2021

Are you looking for the best Mexican food in San Diego? If so – keep reading!

If you’re looking for amazing Mexican food in San Diego – then hopefully this list will give you plenty of ideas and recommendations! The Mexican food in San Diego is some of the best in the country, San Diego is full of incredible Mexican restaurants, street food and pop-ups – so you’ll be spoilt for choice if you’re looking for Mexican food in San Diego.

So, no matter which dish you’ve got a craving for (nachos, tacos, burritos… you name it) you’ll find somewhere on this list to enjoy! So let’s go!


Here are the top places for Mexican food in San Diego!


City Tacos

First on my list of the best Mexican food in San Diego, it’s City Tacos. City Tacos are known for their unique and tasty food, aiming to bring fresh Mexican food to the people of San Diego. With locations at Ballpark, Imperial Beach, North Park, Encinitas, Pacific Beach, and more, this is one of the most convenient places for Mexican food in San Diego. The Mexicali is a fan favorite, featuring grilled arrachera, melted asadero cheese and a generous crema fresca. Delicious.  


Death by Tequila

Although this place is known for its incredible tequila (as you may have guessed by the name) it’s also another brilliant place for Mexican food in San Diego. Death by Tequila is also renowned as one of the top places for Mexican food in San Diego… Serving up delicious dishes that are packed with organic ingredients, you won’t find a fresher pitstop in the city. 


Fernandez Restaurant

Another incredible place for Mexican food in San Diego is Fernandez Restaurant. Like Tacos El Gordo, these guys specialize in traditional Tijuana-style tacos. Stuffed with meat that’s slow-cooked overnight, each taco is a melt-in-your-mouth sensation that will keep you coming back for more. If you love toppings, be sure to pile your food high with cilantro, salsa, and onions – don’t miss out on this amazing Mexican food in San Diego!


Las Cuatro Milpas

Next on this list of the best Mexican food in San Diego, it’s Las Cuatro Milpas. If you’re looking for soft tortillas, tamales, and cheap prices, then you can’t do better than Las Cuatro Milpas.

Sure, you won’t be getting the most complicated Mexican food in San Diego, but these guys always have a queue round the block for their incredible dishes. The menu is small and simple, but we feel that’s usually a sign of well-cooked, flavorful food. It’s a fantastic place for Mexican food in San Diego and definitely won’t disappoint!


Tacos El Gordo

Since 1998, Tacos El Gordo has been taking San Diego by storm, which is why it’s next on our list for Mexican food in San Diego. Known for their excellent service, authentic Tijuana Tacos, and top-grade ingredients, these guys continue to be one of the best places for Mexican food in San Diego.

Oh, and did we mention that they make their guac from scratch EVERY DAY? Don’t miss out on this amazing location for Mexican food in San Diego, or you’ll regret it!


Corozon De Torta

Sometimes, the best food is street food, and the owner of Corozon De Torta, Antonio Ley, certainly understands that. Mexican food in San Diego is so great because there’s so many different types of food places, and this is one of the more unique ones.

Serving up the best slow-cooked tacos in San Diego and the gooiest chipotle meat sauce in the city, it’s no wonder this place is considered one of the top places for Mexican food in San Diego. If you’re a veggie, you’ll be pleased to know that there are several vegetarian and vegan alternatives available. Phew! 

Read more: The best Mexican food in Las Vegas!


Aqui es Texcoco

Next on our list of the best Mexican food in San Diego, it’s Aqui es Texcoco. If you’re looking for something slightly different than traditional Mexican fare, then you need to add Aqui es Texcoco to your list of Mexican food in San Diego to check out. This place is known for its lamb barbecue, which is quite literally an entire lamb which has been slow roasted to perfection.

If you’re not quite up for that veritable feast, then why not try out one of their family platters? Or one of their many desserts, perhaps? Seriously this place has so much amazing Mexican food on offer. Whatever you choose, you certainly won’t to miss out on this amazing place for Mexican food in San Diego.


Lola 55

Lola 55 is in San Diego’s East Village, and it’s known for its high-quality, meaty tacos. And it’s next on our list of Mexican food in San Diego! Although this place knows how to stuff a taco to perfection, it’s arguably the toppings that make Lola 55 worth a return visit.

With everything from avocado mousse to delicious leeks on offer, you’d be foolish not to pay these guys a visit. If you’re in the mood for something lighter, give the Lola Caesar salad a try. Filling and fresh, there’s something at this Mexican food joint for every appetite. Don’t miss out on this incredible place for Mexican food in San Diego.


Oscar’s Mexican Seafood

Do you just love fish tacos? Hey, us too. If you’re on the hunt for the best places for Mexican food in San Diego that happen to specialize in seafood, then Oscar’s Mexican Seafood should be your first port of call. The crab tostadas are a particular fan favorite, but the classic fish tacos are something that everyone should try at least once – in our humble opinion, of course. 


Puesto

If you’re looking for the best slow-cooked meats in San Diego, then Puesto is the place to be. Featuring sumptuous corn tacos, Maine lobster, and perhaps the most intense Margarita menu you’ve ever seen, Puesto is absolutely one of the best places for Mexican food in San Diego. 


Lolita’s Restaurant

Do you love burritos, tacos, and chimichangas? Then, you adore Lolita’s Restaurant. All the ingredients at this restaurant are locally sourced daily, and these guys pride themselves on authentic recipes, unique spice blends, and amazing flavors. This is absolutely one of the best places for Mexican food in San Diego, so don’t miss out!


The Taco Stand

Although the food served at The Taco Stand is as simple as the place’s namesake, it remains one of the top spots for Mexican food in San Diego. Sure, the menu isn’t super extravagant, but the quality of each dish is excellent.

The tortillas and guac here are both made fresh daily, and there are plenty of choices to suit every palate. So, whether you fancy mahi mahi tacos or a classic meat taco, you’re sure to find something at this famous spot that tickles your tastebuds. This is one of our favorite places for Mexican food in San Diego.

Read more: The best tacos in Las Vegas, and where to find them!


El Indio

Next up on our list of the best Mexican food in San Diego, it’s El Indio. Believe it or not, this humble Mexican joint has been serving customers since World War Two!

This restaurant makes its tortillas from scratch, and the business continues to be family-owned. If you’re struggling to decide what you want to eat, then why not try one of El Indio’s Combination Plates? Whether you fancy Carnitas or Tacos, you’ll find them here! It’s an amazing choice for Mexican food in San Diego.


Café Coyote

If you’re heading to San Diego’s Old Town, then be sure to stop by Café Coyote. This place is an epic location for Mexican food in San Diego! All the food at Café Coyote is made fresh, and the beautiful patio dining area and refreshing drinks menu just make things sweeter. If the vibrant exterior wasn’t enough to convince you to visit, then perhaps the friendly staff and traditional Mexican entertainment will! 


Tahona

Tahona is one of San Diego’s most loved bars. Offering incredible beverages that aim to channel Mexican culture, it’s one of the top spots to visit on a San Diego bar crawl. Aside from its awesome cocktails, Tahona is also one of the best places for Mexican food in San Diego. With both an a la carte and a tasting menu on offer, the options available here are truly limitless. 


TJ Oyster Bar

TJ Oyster Bar is one of those family-run businesses that just oozes passion and warmth. Offering amazing Mexican seafood at multiple locations, TJ Oyster Bar is certainly one of the best places for Mexican food in San Diego.

These guys always insist on fresh seafood, and they serve up unique recipes like Smoked Tuna Fries and Machaca Style Stingray. So, if you’re after food with a difference, then this place is well worth exploring. You won’t want to miss this Mexican food in San Diego!


Mujer Divina

Next on my list of Mexican food in San Diego, it’s Mujer Divina. Literally translating to “divine women” in English, Mujer Divina is a tribute to the owner Priscilla Curiel’s family history. Appearing on GQ’s Best New Restaurants List and the Michelin Guide’s Delicious Discoveries Across California, it’s no surprise that this quaint little eatery is deemed one of the top 20 places for Mexican food in San Diego! 


La Puerto

Get into the swing of things with some live music at La Puerto! A visit to this amazing Mexican restaurant genuinely feels like a night out, and their food is always incredible. Offering up some of the best Mexican food in San Diego alongside some of the city’s finest margaritas, this spot has got everything you need. 


Lucha Libre

Lucha Libre is a great place to grab Mexican food in San Diego, as it’s easy to find, cheap, and doesn’t scrimp on flavor. If you’re looking for something different, then be sure to try Lucha Libre’s TJ Dog. Packed with peppers and onions, this Tijuana beef hot dog is going to change the way you look at Mexican food. 


Humberto’s

And last on our list of Mexican food in San Diego, it’s Humberto’s! There’s nothing better than a great meal after a big night out, right? If you’re in a pinch and need some food stat, then consider stopping by Humberto’s. Open 24 hours a day, this grab-and-go spot is amazing for folks in need of burritos and tacos late at night. 


Hopefully this list of amazing Mexican food in San Diego has give you loads of ideas for where to visit!


Mexican food in San Diego is famous for being absolutely brilliant, and if you work your way through just a few of these suggestions, you’ll understand what we mean! Mexican food in San Diego is one of the best reasons to visit the city for sure!

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