Rochester keeps up when it comes to tacos. It has a very authentic taco scene. From food trucks to full service menus, the options for a quick street taco or full blown fiesta are all close by. Below are a few of my favorite taco and Mexican restaurants in and around Rochester, MN.
If you’re really in a celebratory mood, make your own taco crawl with a taco or two at each spot and try them all (they all have a la carte options)!
Mexican restaurants in Rochester, MN
La Poblana is a great little sit down spot with a full menu, a few large TVs (likely playing soccer), and pinatas and garland streaming from the ceiling. Each table is equipped with it’s own unique bottle opener as you’re encouraged to to grab a Mexican beer or Jarritos soda from one of the serve-yourself coolers. After being seated, fresh chips and salsa make their way to your table, but make sure you leave room for something from their large menu. They also have a small Mexican grocery in house with delicious baked goods and other goodies.
It’s literally a fiesta in here. Brightly colored decor covers every inch of the dining room and you’ll immediately notice the huge salsa bar (think more than 15 salsas ranging from spicy to savory to even slightly sweet). Their menu has all of your Mexican favorites. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the cows tongue taco with their homemade salsa verde.
Fun spot downtown with a fantastic outdoor patio oases. Tacos, Mexican dishes, burritos, and plenty of fun desserts. Also the best margarita menu in town. Try the strawberry-rhubarb margarita!
Margaritas?: Oh yeah
Tacos for all. Literally the best Saturday afternoon I’ve had in a while was when I ordered the flower child taco (some sort of cauliflower magic goodness) + chips and guac + a margarita.
Super authentic, full menu Mexican restaurant. They started as a taco truck and now have a brick and mortar. Start out with an order of tamales and try their great variety of salsas.
Your standard Mexican restaurant with combo plates and more. They do have a nice, large patio space though, so if summer is calling, this would be a great spot if you’re hungry.
Two things to note here: horchata and Mexican paletas (popsicles!). While mainly a Mexican grocery store, tucked in the back, you’ll notice tables and a kitchen. This is a hidden gem. It’s fun to shop among the aisles of Mexican items and served with a radish, onion, roasted jalepeno, and lime, their tacos are the most authentic of the bunch.
This is my go-to for picking up salsas, marinated meat, etc. for an at-home taco bar. An extension of El Gallo, you’ll find similar items at each location.
Tacos and taco trucks in Rochester, MN
When it comes to taco trucks, you’ll want to make sure you bring cash and always do a little research before you go. Most of them have Facebook pages – check their hours, updates for any location changes, etc. Remember, they are trucks and being mobile is the aim of their game. Also, while some may have a picnic table or two, most will be grab and go style.
Location: 1451 12 St. SE
I wish I was lying when I say we go here at least once a week in the summer months… With simple ingredients and flavors that pack a serious punch, their tacos are hard to beat. The ratio of meat to toppings is perfect and they lightly fry the shells so they’ve got a little crisp when you take a bite. At $2 a taco, it’s hard not to order one of each! Beware of the salsa – it’s hot.
Location: 1225 Eastgate Dr SE
You’ll know you’re in the right spot by the Ranchera music blaring from the truck, friendly smiles ready to take your order, and a likely line. After one bite, you’ll understand said likely line. Serving authentic street tacos along with burritos, quesadillas, nachos, rice and beans, this is a must try in Rochester.
Location: 1005 N Broadway Ave + Apache Mall
Super friendly. Super good food. They even have a brick and mortar spot in the Apache Mall.
Location: 7 12th St SE
Location: 706 N Broadway
Last time I was here (last weekend), they had Mexican street corn! While I’m not sure if this will be a permanent addition to their already fabulous menu, I may have done some begging on all of your behalf.
Location: 1131 3rd Ave SE
Location: 517 12th St. SE
Other restaurants that serve noteworthy tacos
If pretty ambiance is essential to your taco game, Tap House is your spot. With a great rooftop patio mixed with full bar (margaritas, duh), and 50 beers on tap, the Tap House has some very respectable Mexican options on their menu. I’d recommend the Loco Tacos and an order of their guacamole. Literally my vision of perfection.
Two words: fish tacos. Maybe my favorite fish tacos in Rochester. Maybe my favorite tacos in Rochester…… Hit up their lunch specials or in the summer, they have a very popular fish taco stand at Thursdays on First and Third.
Located in the downtown food court in the skyway of University Square, this spot is tucked away next to Lettuce Unite. Tacos are decent, but cilantro rice with nam nam sauce is noteworthy. Also of note: If you pay cash, 3 tacos + pepsi (or water) + rice for $10.
I’m sure I missed a few; where are your favorite Mexican joints in Rochester? Let me know in the comments.