Philly’s love for Mexican dishes is strong. The city is brimming with possibilities, ranging from original dishes from various parts of Mexico to more Americanized inventions, all of which pair well with a refreshing agua fresca or margarita. Below are some of the top Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia right now, whether you prefer a casual taqueria, more upmarket fare, or vegan twists on traditional cuisine.
When it comes to Mexican food in Philadelphia, there is no shortage of options.
There are laid-back taquerias, street food trucks, plant-based cafes offering inventive spins on Mexican food, and multi-course dishes with all the fixings at some top-notch restaurants. Philly has something for every palate and pocket.
Top Mexican Restaurants in Philadelphia
Whether you’re looking for a new takeaway or brunch spot, this list of 18 finest Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia has everything you’re looking for.
Añejo, an offspring of the famous Hell’s Kitchen tequila bar and restaurant, is one of the finest Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia and a must-try for any Mexican food lover.
With a nice collection of mezcals, tequilas, and Mexican drinks for every meal, this spot welcomes customers to enjoy cocktails like La Diabla: Marie Brizard crème de cassis, chili pepper-infused Espero tequila, lime, yellow chartreuse, and Fever-Tree ginger beer
2. Cantina La Martina
Cantina La Martina is at the top of the list of the best Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia because of its refreshing aguachiles, sharing quesadillas, and delectable moles.
Chef-owner Dionicio Jimenez’s meals at this Kensington restaurant have won him a James Beard nomination and a devoted following.
Tacos and enchiladas are popular lunch items. Brunch includes tamales, chilaquiles, and other Mexican favorites, as well as pancakes with Mexican chocolate whipped cream and fruit.
The New York strip steak with nopales and huitlacoche and braised goat are standouts during supper.
3. South Philly Barbacoa
The food at South Philly Barbacoa isn’t simply great Mexican food; it’s also an important component of the city.
Cristina Martinez, the chef-owner, has been acknowledged for her recipes rooted in her Mexican ancestry almost everywhere, from the James Beard Awards to several periodicals and TV shows.
The lamb barbacoa tacos are the most popular here. The lamb is slow-cooked in a citrus marinade and served with corn tortillas baked in-house.
The lamb consommé is constantly popular, and other rotating items like tamales are available, although the menu is always short.
South Philly Barbacoa, which by the way, is one of the best Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia, is open Monday through Thursday evenings and serves tlacoyos, quesadillas, and other dishes.
Mexican-themed LMNO, one of the finest Mexican restaurants in Denver, is a Fishtown restaurant with a vast dining room and patio, as well as a bookshop, music listening area, and art gallery.
The Baja-inspired cuisine has aguachiles with veggie options, seafood tostadas, crunchy melted cheese, and “dirty” tacos.
The larger plates are meant to be shared, and they include various make-your-own taco alternatives, such as whole grilled seabass and lobster tails. Brunch favorites include tres leches French toast and birria Benedict.
5. Juana Tamale
This long-time popular restaurant is one of the best restaurants in Denver and has captured many hearts and stomachs with its over-the-top birria tacos, tamales, and vegan wings.
Now that Juana Tamale has its own physical location, the menu is dominated by staples, although it is frequently enhanced by limited-time additions ranging from brunch to ramen. Look out for unexpected specials and try to get the meals before they sell out.
6. Taqueria Amor
Taqueria Amor‘s menu has fajitas, quesadillas, and an abundance of tacos. Every dinner at this casual Mexican taqueria in Manayunk is a mix of delicious cuisine and good fun, making it one of the best Mexican restaurants in Denver to unwind.
The restaurant frequently presents pop-up concepts in addition to its menu, which includes beef enchiladas, jewels like tacos al pastor, and creamy chorizo fundido.
Visitors may find Tikirita Amor, Merry Grinchmas, Barbie, or something else to spice up their evening depending on the time of year.
With summer skies and painted murals of rolling hills complementing the restaurant courtyard’s lush trees and flora, this outdoor restaurant a great for sipping drinks like the Uno de Juno, which combines cazadores blackberry liqueur, strawberry, lemon, blanco, and hot honey.
The torta de pastor sandwich, with ham, chipotle mayo, roasted pork, queso Oaxaca, refried beans, lettuce, avocado, and tomato, is a must-try.
8. La Llorona Cantina
The meal at La Llorona Cantina is meant to be shared. And thank goodness for that, since limiting yourself to this South Philly restaurant, which happens to be one of the best Mexican restaurants in Denver, would be a disgrace.
Tacos, quesadillas, and ceviches dominate the menu, which also includes a lengthy tequila and mezcal selection. For a more substantial meal, try the chicken breast with mole or the half rack of guajillo adobo ribs, which can be used to make your own tacos.
9. El Vez
For the past 20 years, El Vez, one of the finest Mexican restaurants in Denver, has been a popular destination in Midtown Village for margaritas and guacamole.
It is a brunch and dinner attraction, as well as a wonderful lunch alternative in the Center City, with plush velvet booths, a spinning low-rider bike over the bar, and loads of glitz and glam.
The black bean tlayuda and the Baja shrimp tacos are two of our favorites. There are numerous options for build-your-own tacos and other variations of Mexican staples.
In addition, the bar provides a large selection of tequila in varieties ranging from hot blood orange to pineapple.
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10. Sor Ynez
Sor Ynez is one of the best Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia. One of its hallmark dishes, the crunchy tlacoyos made of blue corn masa and fluffy, nearly has us in tears.
They’re filling for an appetizer and a great must-try, layered with refried beans, queso fresco, nopales, and salsa verde.
Other standouts include the Michoacan-style pig carnitas platter—a delicate slice of pork served with whole blue corn tortillas, pinto beans, and cilantro habanero salsa—and the garlic shrimp, which is infused with mezcal and served with creamy rice.
Vegetarians can also find plenty of options.
11. La Calaca Feliz
La Calaca Feliz has numerous spaces to savor its contemporary Mexican cookery.
Whether you’re toasting with margaritas on the quiet terrace or sinking into a pile of nachos in the mural-covered dining room. Enchiladas, quesadillas, and a variety of tacos are available at the Fairmount eatery.
Begin with the esquites guacamole, which is topped with queso fresco and grilled corn, and then move on to the enchilada mixto and carnitas tacos to sample a little bit of everything.
Whatever you’re eating, the Ranch Water and Santana margarita cocktail are ideal beverages. Huevos rancheros are a favorite for brunch, but there are many other options.
12. Mole Poblano
When you name your restaurant Mole Poblano after the iconic chicken dish smothered with chocolatey, nutty, nuanced mole, you raise the bar.
Fortunately, this traditional Mexican restaurant that integrates Puebla’s flavors and cooking techniques meets your expectations, as it is one of the finest Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia.
Mole Poblano’s cuisine sings, from the mole that graces burritos and enchiladas to the handcrafted classic tacos and sopes. If you go on a weekend, look for the braised goat barbacoa and tamale specials.
Tequila’s has been bringing Mexican food to Rittenhouse Square for nearly 40 years. It is one of the city’s first real Mexican restaurants, with a huge bar and dining rooms full of white tablecloth-draped tables.
But that doesn’t imply an evening here is stuffy; just look at the server who balances cocktails on his head.
For a lovely first course, start with queso fundido topped with huitlacoche and shrimp ceviche. It’s impossible to go wrong with mains.
The molcajete de carne, served boiling in a heated lava bowl, and the carne asada a la tampiquea, a marinated strip steak with chicken taquito and tamal, are two of our favorites. Churros are a must-order dessert.
14. Loco Pez
Loco Pez’s three restaurants feature simple Cal-Mex fare such as burritos, tacos, and quesadillas. Their extensive tequila and beer list hits the spot, especially on one of their dollar taco nights.
You will love the chilaquiles and the amazing charro skillet with carne asada, fried egg, and mole.
Lolita, which was opened in 2004 by James Beard Award-nominated chef Marcie Turney and entrepreneurs Valerie Safran, offers a rustic ambiance with exposed brick walls and wooden details in contrast to its contemporary Mexican dishes.
Build-your-own taquizas highlight on the menu, with protein options including smoky morita chile filet tips and grilled chipotle shrimp. While you’re at it, share a pitcher of margaritas in classic blood orange or lime flavors.
Craving for some spicy burritos, tacos, or enchiladas? Then look no further than these amazing Mexican restaurants listed in this list of top Mexican restaurants in Philadelphia.
From casual to upscale dining, and traditional Mexican dishes to American fusion or Mexican street food, this list has it all.