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Tuetano Taqueria
Steven Osuna

Where to Eat Tacos in San Diego

21 spots for handheld goodness

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Tuetano Taqueria
| Steven Osuna

Tacos are a loaded topic in San Diego, for good and obvious reasons. Every local has a list of favorites to rattle off when asked, one each for fish tacos, hard shell, birria, modern, Tijuana street-style and so on. There are a number—okay, 21, in this case—that constantly come to mind whenever the subject of tacos come up. Here are 21 of the best places to get tacos in San Diego.

Did any of your favorites not make the list? Please let us know in the comments. Note: map points are not ranked.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Mi Rancho Market

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911 S Escondido Blvd
Escondido, CA 92025
(760) 738-8524

Housed inside a Mexican market in Escondido, where they sell fresh meat, there is also a taco shop serving up piping hot street tacos to order. Cabeza, lengua, carnitas, carne asada and adobada are just a few selections on offer.

2. Galaxy Taco

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2259 Avenida De La Playa
La Jolla, CA 92037
(858) 228-5655
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Galaxy Taco is known for its upmarket, more modern tacos with premium ingredients. Of special note is their blue corn used for their house made tortillas, which is purchased from a company that sources heirloom corn directly from Oaxaca.

3. Pacific Beach Fish Shop

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1775 Garnet Ave
San Diego, CA 92109
(858) 483-4746
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The Fish Shop boasts three locations throughout San Diego — Pacific Beach, Point Loma, and Encinitas. Menus may vary, but the Pacific Beach location is currently offering a variety of fish tacos in delicious marinades. Tacos are between $5.25 and $7.

Official Image [Fish Shop]

4. Taco Surf PB

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4657 Mission Blvd
San Diego, CA 92109
(858) 272-3877
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This Pacific Beach hot spot serves up fresh tacos, burritos, and even nachos. Tacos are around just $4 a piece.

Facebook [Taco Surf PB]

5. Carnitas Las Michoacanas

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6513 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92115
(619) 229-9574
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Like the name says, come here for carnitas, which comes served in heaping, flavorful piles that can then be scooped into corn tortillas. If variety is needed, pollo asado, carne asada and adobada tacocs are other just-as-good options.

6. City Tacos

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3028 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92104
(619) 296-2303
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City Tacos serves more modern interpretations of tacos with a variety array of salsas to choose from. The borrego taco includes pulled lamb with wild mushrooms, cotija cheese, tomato, cilantro and fried leeks in a chipotle cream sauce on a corn tortilla and the “especial” has sautéed shrimp, octopus & squid, oaxaca cheese, tomato concasse, panko-fried snow crab, diced cilantro and Serrano chiles on a flour tortilla, to give a couple of examples. This place is also one of the most vegetarian-friendly taco spots in the city.

Official Image [City Tacos]

7. La Vecindad Neighborhood TACOS

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3827 Fifth Ave
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 501-2885

Situated on 5th Avenue in Hillcrest, this taco spot is open most nights until 10 p.m. for late-night bites. Specials include Taco Tuesday and brunch on Sunday mornings.

Facebook [La Vecindad]

8. Karina's Ceviches & More

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3731 India St B
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 255-5900
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Karina’s has been serving ceviches, tacos, and delicious margaritas since 1981. Particularly delicious tacos include the al pastor and surf ‘n’ turf.

Official Image [Karina’s Ceviches & More]

9. Blue Water Seafood Market & Grill

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3667 India St
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 497-0914
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This fish shop offers a range of their fresh catches in taco form every day. Most will cost between $5 and $10, with sandwich and salad options available as well. Get anything from a yellowtail to scallops.

Facebook [Blue Water]

10. The Taco Stand

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3000 Upas St #105
San Diego, CA 92104
(619) 795-8797
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With a handful of locations all over the city, the original Taco Stand in La Jolla is still cranking out Tijuana-style tacos in its brick-and-mortar storefront made to recall a Mexican taco stand. Favorites include the classic al pastor; the Sonora taco with steak, cheese, beans, guacamole, onions and cilantro in a flour tortilla and the grilled mahi mahi. Vegetarians can also try the nopal taco, with grilled cactus, cheese, cilantro sauce tomato and avocado—vegans can swap out the cheese for beans.

Courtesy photo

11. Lola 55

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1290 F St
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 542-9155
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After a long wait, the East Village’s Lola 55 finally debuted in 2018. Innovative takes on classic Mexican tacos are the move at this fast-casual, smartly designed taco shop that also boasts a stacked bar. For a real scorcher, try the spicy fish taco.

Lola55 fish taco
Sam Wells

12. La Puerta

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560 Fourth Ave
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 696-3466
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Right in the heart of the Gaslamp is La Puerta, which serves street tacos dutifully until 2 a.m. seven days a week in it’s sit-down restaurant. Can’t choose just one taco? Try their mix ‘n match, which allows guests to choose three different tacos to make up one order.

Official Image [La Puerta]

13. Tacos el Cabron

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532 Fourth Ave
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 501-7752
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New to downtown, also in the Gaslamp, is Tacos el Cabron, which was open by an Argentine man who had spent five years living in Tijuana eating and loving tacos before opening up shop in San Diego. Favorites include anything with shrimp—be it a shrimp taco or a surf and turf with carne asada, and for vegetarians, the portobello taco is a hit. The adobada is also popular, as is the classic carne asada.

Facebook [Tacos El Cabron]

14. Puesto

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789 W Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 233-8880
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Pleasing crowds at both its downtown and La Jolla locations, Puesto provides a lively and colorful setting for tacos built on a base that melts a crisp layer of cheese onto a tortilla. There are luxe versions filled with lobster or filet mignon, and a rotating taco of the month.

puesto

15. La Fachada

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20 25th St
San Diego, CA 92102
(619) 236-8566
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A longtime favorite in the city, La Fachada in Logan Heights is here for all street taco needs, serving until 1:30 a.m. seven days a week. The tortillas are made by hand and favorites include birria, carnitas and lengua.

Official Image [La Fachada]

16. Las Cuatro Milpas

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1857 Logan Ave
San Diego, CA 92113
(619) 234-4460

Rolled tacos with pork are the move here at this well-loved Barrio Logan institution, as are fried hard shell tacos with pork, chicken or beef. Come hungry and be prepared to wait.

17. ¡SALUD!

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2196 Logan Ave
San Diego, CA 92113
(619) 255-3856
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Get the full spectrum of tacos at Salud in Barrio Logan, which includes veggie, fried shell, chile relleno, breakfast, al pastor, fish and others. To go with, order from one of the many craft beers Salud has on tap.

Official Image [¡SALUD!]

18. Tacos El Paisa

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840 S 47th St
San Diego, CA 92113
(619) 262-5128
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Also in Barrio Logan is mainstay Tacos El Paisa, which serves larger and smaller street-style tacos, along with rolled tacos. Almost any taco filling—be it carnitas, carne asada, al pastor, fish or machaca, to name a few, can also be made into a burrito.

Official Image [Tacos El Paisa]

19. Tacos El Gordo

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556 Broadway
Chula Vista, CA 91910
(619) 691-8848
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Known as the king of street-style tacos on both sides of the border with multiple locations, including in Las Vegas, Tacos El Gordo is a fixture on many San Diegans’ personal “best taco” lists. Choose your meat and line up at one of the corresponding windows to get the goods—the best bet is to conference with your crew ahead of time and divvy up the duties accordingly. The latest location to open is on Broadway in Chula Vista.

Courtesy photo

20. Aqui Es Texcoco

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1043 Broadway
Chula Vista, CA 91911
(619) 427-4045
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Aqui es Texcoco is a sit-down restaurant with a large menu but those in the know come here for one thing: lamb barbacoa. But those looking to go a little wider will find an impressive array: huitlacoche, chapulines (crickets), lamb brain and blood sausage are all options, as are tacos with zucchini flower tortillas.

Instagram [Aqui Es Texcoco]

21. Taqueria Revolucion

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362 E San Ysidro Blvd
San Diego, CA 92173
(619) 690-3187
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Street tacos with a view of the U.S.-Mexico border—that’s what’s on order at Taqueria Revolucion. Classic Tijuana-style street tacos abound, but make sure at least one adobada is on the table.

Official Image [Taqueria Revolucion]

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1. Mi Rancho Market

911 S Escondido Blvd, Escondido, CA 92025

Housed inside a Mexican market in Escondido, where they sell fresh meat, there is also a taco shop serving up piping hot street tacos to order. Cabeza, lengua, carnitas, carne asada and adobada are just a few selections on offer.

911 S Escondido Blvd
Escondido, CA 92025

2. Galaxy Taco

2259 Avenida De La Playa, La Jolla, CA 92037

Galaxy Taco is known for its upmarket, more modern tacos with premium ingredients. Of special note is their blue corn used for their house made tortillas, which is purchased from a company that sources heirloom corn directly from Oaxaca.

2259 Avenida De La Playa
La Jolla, CA 92037

3. Pacific Beach Fish Shop

1775 Garnet Ave, San Diego, CA 92109
Official Image [Fish Shop]

The Fish Shop boasts three locations throughout San Diego — Pacific Beach, Point Loma, and Encinitas. Menus may vary, but the Pacific Beach location is currently offering a variety of fish tacos in delicious marinades. Tacos are between $5.25 and $7.

1775 Garnet Ave
San Diego, CA 92109

4. Taco Surf PB

4657 Mission Blvd, San Diego, CA 92109
Facebook [Taco Surf PB]

This Pacific Beach hot spot serves up fresh tacos, burritos, and even nachos. Tacos are around just $4 a piece.

4657 Mission Blvd
San Diego, CA 92109

5. Carnitas Las Michoacanas

6513 University Ave, San Diego, CA 92115

Like the name says, come here for carnitas, which comes served in heaping, flavorful piles that can then be scooped into corn tortillas. If variety is needed, pollo asado, carne asada and adobada tacocs are other just-as-good options.

6513 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92115

6. City Tacos

3028 University Ave, San Diego, CA 92104
Official Image [City Tacos]

City Tacos serves more modern interpretations of tacos with a variety array of salsas to choose from. The borrego taco includes pulled lamb with wild mushrooms, cotija cheese, tomato, cilantro and fried leeks in a chipotle cream sauce on a corn tortilla and the “especial” has sautéed shrimp, octopus & squid, oaxaca cheese, tomato concasse, panko-fried snow crab, diced cilantro and Serrano chiles on a flour tortilla, to give a couple of examples. This place is also one of the most vegetarian-friendly taco spots in the city.

3028 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92104

7. La Vecindad Neighborhood TACOS

3827 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92103
Facebook [La Vecindad]

Situated on 5th Avenue in Hillcrest, this taco spot is open most nights until 10 p.m. for late-night bites. Specials include Taco Tuesday and brunch on Sunday mornings.

3827 Fifth Ave
San Diego, CA 92103

8. Karina's Ceviches & More

3731 India St B, San Diego, CA 92103
Official Image [Karina’s Ceviches & More]

Karina’s has been serving ceviches, tacos, and delicious margaritas since 1981. Particularly delicious tacos include the al pastor and surf ‘n’ turf.

3731 India St B
San Diego, CA 92103

9. Blue Water Seafood Market & Grill

3667 India St, San Diego, CA 92103
Facebook [Blue Water]

This fish shop offers a range of their fresh catches in taco form every day. Most will cost between $5 and $10, with sandwich and salad options available as well. Get anything from a yellowtail to scallops.

3667 India St
San Diego, CA 92103

10. The Taco Stand

3000 Upas St #105, San Diego, CA 92104
Courtesy photo

With a handful of locations all over the city, the original Taco Stand in La Jolla is still cranking out Tijuana-style tacos in its brick-and-mortar storefront made to recall a Mexican taco stand. Favorites include the classic al pastor; the Sonora taco with steak, cheese, beans, guacamole, onions and cilantro in a flour tortilla and the grilled mahi mahi. Vegetarians can also try the nopal taco, with grilled cactus, cheese, cilantro sauce tomato and avocado—vegans can swap out the cheese for beans.

3000 Upas St #105
San Diego, CA 92104

11. Lola 55

1290 F St, San Diego, CA 92101
Lola55 fish taco
Sam Wells

After a long wait, the East Village’s Lola 55 finally debuted in 2018. Innovative takes on classic Mexican tacos are the move at this fast-casual, smartly designed taco shop that also boasts a stacked bar. For a real scorcher, try the spicy fish taco.

1290 F St
San Diego, CA 92101

12. La Puerta

560 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Official Image [La Puerta]

Right in the heart of the Gaslamp is La Puerta, which serves street tacos dutifully until 2 a.m. seven days a week in it’s sit-down restaurant. Can’t choose just one taco? Try their mix ‘n match, which allows guests to choose three different tacos to make up one order.

560 Fourth Ave
San Diego, CA 92101

13. Tacos el Cabron

532 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Facebook [Tacos El Cabron]

New to downtown, also in the Gaslamp, is Tacos el Cabron, which was open by an Argentine man who had spent five years living in Tijuana eating and loving tacos before opening up shop in San Diego. Favorites include anything with shrimp—be it a shrimp taco or a surf and turf with carne asada, and for vegetarians, the portobello taco is a hit. The adobada is also popular, as is the classic carne asada.

532 Fourth Ave
San Diego, CA 92101

14. Puesto

789 W Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101
puesto

Pleasing crowds at both its downtown and La Jolla locations, Puesto provides a lively and colorful setting for tacos built on a base that melts a crisp layer of cheese onto a tortilla. There are luxe versions filled with lobster or filet mignon, and a rotating taco of the month.

789 W Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92101

15. La Fachada

20 25th St, San Diego, CA 92102
Official Image [La Fachada]

A longtime favorite in the city, La Fachada in Logan Heights is here for all street taco needs, serving until 1:30 a.m. seven days a week. The tortillas are made by hand and favorites include birria, carnitas and lengua.

20 25th St
San Diego, CA 92102

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16. Las Cuatro Milpas

1857 Logan Ave, San Diego, CA 92113

Rolled tacos with pork are the move here at this well-loved Barrio Logan institution, as are fried hard shell tacos with pork, chicken or beef. Come hungry and be prepared to wait.

1857 Logan Ave
San Diego, CA 92113

17. ¡SALUD!

2196 Logan Ave, San Diego, CA 92113
Official Image [¡SALUD!]

Get the full spectrum of tacos at Salud in Barrio Logan, which includes veggie, fried shell, chile relleno, breakfast, al pastor, fish and others. To go with, order from one of the many craft beers Salud has on tap.

2196 Logan Ave
San Diego, CA 92113

18. Tacos El Paisa

840 S 47th St, San Diego, CA 92113
Official Image [Tacos El Paisa]

Also in Barrio Logan is mainstay Tacos El Paisa, which serves larger and smaller street-style tacos, along with rolled tacos. Almost any taco filling—be it carnitas, carne asada, al pastor, fish or machaca, to name a few, can also be made into a burrito.

840 S 47th St
San Diego, CA 92113

19. Tacos El Gordo

556 Broadway, Chula Vista, CA 91910
Courtesy photo

Known as the king of street-style tacos on both sides of the border with multiple locations, including in Las Vegas, Tacos El Gordo is a fixture on many San Diegans’ personal “best taco” lists. Choose your meat and line up at one of the corresponding windows to get the goods—the best bet is to conference with your crew ahead of time and divvy up the duties accordingly. The latest location to open is on Broadway in Chula Vista.

556 Broadway
Chula Vista, CA 91910

20. Aqui Es Texcoco

1043 Broadway, Chula Vista, CA 91911
Instagram [Aqui Es Texcoco]

Aqui es Texcoco is a sit-down restaurant with a large menu but those in the know come here for one thing: lamb barbacoa. But those looking to go a little wider will find an impressive array: huitlacoche, chapulines (crickets), lamb brain and blood sausage are all options, as are tacos with zucchini flower tortillas.

1043 Broadway
Chula Vista, CA 91911

21. Taqueria Revolucion

362 E San Ysidro Blvd, San Diego, CA 92173
Official Image [Taqueria Revolucion]

Street tacos with a view of the U.S.-Mexico border—that’s what’s on order at Taqueria Revolucion. Classic Tijuana-style street tacos abound, but make sure at least one adobada is on the table.

362 E San Ysidro Blvd
San Diego, CA 92173

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