19 Standout Mexican Restaurants in Boston
Taquerias and restaurants serving up spicy margaritas, trays full of tacos, cheesy enchiladas, and more.
When it comes to quality Mexican food, California we are not—but then again, we’re not exactly some Chipotle-dominated suburb, either. From laid-back taquerias to glam white-tablecloth joints, Boston’s Mexican restaurants deserve their due.
And with margarita, rooftop bar, and patio season now firmly upon us, not to mention Cinco de Mayo looming near, there’s no better time to support local restaurants celebrating all things Mexico: from tequila and mezcal to housemade tortillas and mole. So when you’re ready to dig in, check out our picks for the best Mexican restaurants in Boston right now.
Mex Taqueria & Bar
Anyone who found love for takeaway tacos and street corn from Mexcito last year rejoiced when Mex opened over the winter. Chef Delio Susi Jr. has an architectural background and clearly knows his tech audience, and the modern glass structure and Ms. Pac Man machine scream “Kendall Square.” But the menu blends old and new: Enchiladas and empanadas share table space with sushi and lobster tacos. Drink through the margarita menu, including the house margarita slushie, and be sure to dip a toe into the expansive tequila list.
The name is deceptively fun, because these are some serious eats. Taco offerings include chorizo, pulled pork, fried shrimp, and smoked tofu; those wanting to go the torta route can opt for anything from flank steak to fried chicken to a Hawaiian burger varieta. Yes, there are Mexican Cokes, but they will probably just be a precursor to one of the seven margaritas on hand. The 100-seat patio is just the kicker, though you can also get your Naco Taco fix at Hub Hall and via its food truck.
Why should meat-eaters have all the taco fun? Each vegan concoction at Taco Party gives you a flavorful fix that turns out not to be made of meat at all, but instead rich meat substitutes like jackfruit, fried plantain, and a chimichurri tempeh. Also: vegan nachos! But the kicker may be the Vegan Torta with your choice of tofu or chorizo seitan, which sounds like an impossibility but is oh so real.
For many in town, there’s just one source for Mexican food: this tiny brick front restaurant in Eastie (a second location has since opened nearby, in the Orient Heights section of East Boston). Many come for the Chicken Mole alone, but the allures are plentiful. Take the bracing, award-winning guacamole, for example, or the 10 different tacos, burritos, and entrees like Carne Asada and Enchiladas de Mole (seriously, order anything with any variety of mole sauce—it’s just that good).
For more than 25 years, Anna’s has been satiating our late-night burrito cravings, no small feat in a town not exactly revered for its Mexican cuisine. Founded in 1995 by Michael “Mike” Yoshiomi Kami with the intent of bringing San Francisco’s burrito scene to Boston, Anna’s was a revelation when it first appeared on Beacon Street in Brookline. The burritos are so beloved that a woman once took a bus from New York to Boston to order one, a story that made the New York Times. Tragically, the pandemic recently shuttered the original outpost, but there are still seven locations at the ready to serve up beans, guac, and the fillings of our choice, whether in burrito, taco, quesadilla, or bowl form.
Yellow Door Taqueria
Ten different taco options top the menu (hello, scallop frito), as does birria taco perfection and housemade chips. Beyond the killer margaritas, Yellow Door Taqueria serves up other delicious boozy creations like Waking Up in Tijuana (roasted pecan- and butter-washed tequila, coffee liqueur, banana, cold brew, cinnamon, salt, mole bitters) which makes the perfect beverage for ushering in brunch or providing an end-of-night caffeine boost. If outdoor dining is your jam, head to the South End location for a better shot at snagging an al fresco table.
Given the warming temps, there’s no better time to snag a seat in the courtyard at the Revolution Hotel and acquaint yourself with Cosmica’s menu. The lineup features dressed-up classics like make-your-own pork belly tacos, spring vegetable mole, and grown-up slushies spiked with generous amounts of rum, so you really can’t go wrong.
As if we didn’t already love Union Square’s dining scene enough, along comes this tiny, hip spot that cheerfully challenges the palate. Fried grasshoppers? Cactus salad? Yes and yes, plus divine taco fillings like crispy fried shrimp and thinly sliced cured beef. Sip your way through an expansive mezcal menu or bypass the straight stuff and go for a Prickly Pear Margarita. To boot, a small back patio invites you to indulge under the sun.
Citrus & Salt
Acclaimed chef Jason Santos brings us the full coastal Mexican cuisine experience, from butter-poached lobster tacos to small plates of grilled street corn, Blue Crab Taquitos, and Shrimp and Blue Corn Grits. Margaritas and tequila cocktails are also front and center, and be sure to return for brunch to try the Pulled Pork Carnitas Benedict and sip on a Soft Serve Mimosa.
Aged in both American and French oak barrels and finished in port wine casks, 1800 Cristalino Tequila is an ultra-premium, crystal-clear añejo meant to celebrate life’s special moments with taste. So, this Cinco de Mayo, elevate your experience and raise a glass with 1800 Cristalino instead—your taste buds will thank you.
Chef-owner Allan Rodriguez opened El Centro in Boston’s South End to give the city a Sonora-style restaurant with fresh ideas and creative menu options. Current highlights include a classic Charcoal-Grilled Arrachera a la tampiquena steak with green sauce and Campechanos Tacos that expertly combine carne asada and al pastor. While the pandemic was cruel to this mini-chain, shuttering both the Brookline and Belmont outposts, the Dedham destination is going strong and you can still hit up the South End patio for al fresco dining.
El Pelon Taqueria
Some may balk at tossing around the term “authentic,” but El Pelón holds no such misgivings—it’s right there in the signage. El Pelón Taqueria’s original Fenway location remains the perfect pit stop before or after any ballgame if you manage to snag those oh-so-coveted tickets. Choice favorites include fried plantains with fire-roasted salsa, braised pork tortas with spicy mayo and lime onions, and grilled steak Caramelos tacos topped with salsa fresca and melted Monterey Jack. Each location also has a small but mighty patio—but good luck snagging a seat.
La Victoria Taqueria
Those in the know have long sought out this Arlington Center teeny gem to wolf down the most indulgent of drippy, fatty tacos. (Thankfully, it’s since expanded to two other locations). The menu is as straightforward as they come: tacos, burritos, quesadillas, and tortas, with fillings as boundary-pushing as beef tongue and as simple as marinated chicken. Another other selling point? Two tacos cost you a grand total of $6.50.
Loco Taqueria & Oyster Bar
Once upon a time, you crammed into this South Boston headliner for their renowned coconut margaritas—and those days are finally upon us again. Pair those refreshers with an extended taco feast featuring a slew of experimental fillings like burnt ends, blackened swordfish, buffalo chicken, eggplant al pastor, and more. Add in an order of Sheet Pan Nachos and fiery guacamole before working your way through the ample raw bar.
Lone Star Taco Bar
As punk as a casual taqueria gets, Lone Star earns as much cred for its Mexican street food as it does its mezcal- and tequila-based cocktails. The original taco bar, from the owners of the dearly-departed Deep Ellum, offers up smoked chilies, chorizos, and masa corn tortillas, all made in-house.
Expect to be gobsmacked by the legitimacy of the food at Taqueria Jalisco. The tacos—including beef cheek and tongue varieties—come simply dressed with chopped cilantro, onion, and a squirt of lime. Other staples include fried quesadillas and tamales. Sealing the deal are complimentary chips and three different kinds of homemade salsas.
If you're here, you’re here for the tortas, period. For those unfamiliar, it’s a traditional pressed sandwich made with Telera bread and filled with meat, Oaxaca cheese, mayo, onions, avocado, and tomatoes. Rest assured the requisite tacos, quesadillas, and burritos are all available, too, along with Mexican sodas to wash it all down.
The Painted Burro
Enjoy thoughtful showstoppers like Short Rib Tacos and Pork Carnitas Enchiladas from all three locations of The Painted Burro. And why not add steak fajitas to your order as you lounge about the outdoor patio? Those homemade margaritas need something to soak them up. And you have to love their newly introduced Bottomless Brunch, an all-you-can-eat fest every weekend for $25 per person that spans soulful dishes like Huevos Rancheros, chilaquiles, nachos, and tacos.
Tu Y Yo
Inside Powder House Square, Tu Y Yo is a family-run restaurant peddling its own spin on traditional Veracruz recipes. Be prepared for old-school ingredients like cactus and chapulines (grasshoppers) among more familiar fare like guacamole, enchiladas, and quesadillas filled with options like shredded beef and squash blossoms . Tu y Yo also offers lunch Wednesday through Friday, just in case you’ve grown tired of your daily desk salad.
Villa Mexico Cafe
Owner Nee Julie King earned underground local buzz when she began turning out tamales, flautas, and grilled burritos from a tiny kitchen inside a Beacon Hill gas station. Today at Villa Mexico Cafe, she has her own downtown storefront and is still going strong, offering take-out and limited deliveries throughout Boston.