Top 10 Salt Lake City Mexican Restaurants

Without fail one of  the most popular and favored genre of food across the board is Mexican. And after talking the foodie talk and figuring out what people go bananas for, I’ve come to the simple conclusion just about everyone loves Mexican food. Period. This post is a summation of the best Mexican food in Salt Lake City, with everything from strictly authentic to upscale Mexican dining. Please note that the original post has been revised and updated. Godspeed and Viva Mexico.

10. Rio Grande Cafe

This is my longest standing Mexican go-to on this list! Rio grande is housed inside the historic railroad station, originally built in 1910 and used for the Denver Rio Grand and the Western Railroad. They are always packed with SLC old timers are notorious for serving the most glutinously cheesy enchiladas in the valley. This restaurant is very cost effective lunch/dinner spot with generous portions. My favorite menu item are the Santa Fe enchiladas- layered blue corn tortillas filled with shredded beef and cheese, served with refried beans and rice.  Make sure to tell the levitating taco lady hi for me and bring a couple of coins for the jukebox. Rio Grande Cafe (270 South Rio Grande Street, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.364.3302)

9. Frida Bistro

Mexican with flair and a killer tagline … “Make love to our food” (please say with an accent). Owner Jorge Fiero takes pride in using local ingredients and bright, colorful flavors in every dish. This beautiful restaurant is located on the outskirts of downtown Salt Lake City and has now been open for just over 6 years. The entree pictured above is the Salmon Malinche from their lunch menu: grilled salmon on a corn tamale with saffron butter and sliced avocado. Foodie tip: make sure to order one of their homemade lemonades (my pick- raspberry rosemary)! Frida Bistro (545 West 700 South, Salt Lake City, UT //801.983.6692)

8. Chile Tepin

One of the newest installments to Salt Lake City’s Mexican food scene is Chile Tepin, a bright and vibrantly decorated restaurant located on the corner of 300 west and 200 south where Cafe Trang was previously housed. I’ll be honest to note that during my first meal at Chile Tepin I was not very impressed- my mother and I split 4-5 menu items from the a la carte menu and felt that the flavor was lacking (especially the mole). I did, however, return after SEVERAL friends personally recommended Chile Tepin to me and though it was worth a second shot. What did we find?? One of the best Molcajete dishes we have ever tried. The carne asada, pollo asado, and camaron served in a green tomatillo and cactus sauce was delicious. What we learned: order off of the “Especially de la Casa” menu. Chile Tepin (307 West 200 South, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.883.9255)

7. Hector’s

Cody and I take pride in our love for breakfast burritos and our quest to find the best. After trying dozens of burrito joints far and wide, we have decided that this is the ultimate. Previously known as Molca Salsa, this restaurant serves fast, inexpensive, downright unhealthy Mexican food. The menu is large and covers all typical Mexican bases, but I recommend the bacon breakfast burrito with a glass of horchata. Hectors (2901 East 3300 South, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.487.3850)

6. State Street Tacos

In truth, there is no restaurant called State Street Tacos, but if you’re looking for one of the most inexpensive and authentic taco experiences in Salt Lake City, hop on down to 800 south and State Street. You’ll notice at least two (sometimes three) taco carts on the corner of the ever deteriorating Sears. I’ve tried several taco carts in the Salt Lake Valley and feel like these are some of the best. The taco carts offer a variety of items including quesadillas, burritos, and such, but the best menu item across the board, I have found, are the tacos with carnitas. Absolutely divine. Sears (754 State Street, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.321.4159)

5. Alamexo Mexican Kitchen

Alamexo is in a beautifully natural-lit space in the heart of Salt Lake City. This is the perfect restaurant for an upscale Mexican dining experience in the heart of Salt Lake City. Two things you must order: the table side guac and the enchiladas suizas. Although we have tried several different menu items including specials, these two seem to remain consistent. The owners of Alamexo are projected to open another Mexican restaurant called Alamexo Cantina in the 9th and 9th area which we look forward to trying! Alamexo Mexican Kitchen (268 South State Street, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.779.4747)

4. Taqueria El Rey De Oros

Probably the best authentic Mexican taqueria in Salt Lake City and a step beyond the State Street Tacos as mentioned in suggestion #6. I was recommended to go to this spot by several of my readers and FINALLY made my way over for some of the most delicious, flavorful, inexpensive pockets of Mexican heaven. They have a simple menu filled with tortas, burritos, and tostadas. But my absolute favorite option are the tacos and sopes (think thicker tortilla made with masa served with similar toppings to a taco). Try this spot next time you’re looking for one of the “quick and easy” options for best Mexican food in Salt Lake City. Taqueria El Rey De Oros (157 S 900 W, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.322.3176)

3. Lone Star Taqueria

Featured on Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives” and voted best fish tacos in the state of Utah multiple times. I swoon over their lard fried tortilla chips and wouldn’t pass up one of their fish tacos or quesadillas for anything. Great vibes and perfect for a grub stop after a long ski day in Big Cottonwood Canyon. A list on the best Mexican food in Salt Lake City wouldn’t be complete without Lone Star. Lone Star Taqueria (2265 Fort Union Boulevard, Sandy, UT // 801.944.2300)

2. Chungas

Featured as one of the most underrated restaurants in Salt Lake City and the best authentic Mexican restaurant in Salt Lake City. How do we know this?? A) Chungas comes with the highest of recommendations from all of my Mexican foodie friends. B) It’s in situated in a predominately Latino neighborhood (and across the street from Taqueria El Rey De Oros. C) They serve incredible tacos el pastor and if you don’t know what that is picture spit roasted marinated pork with an intensity and flavor that will literally blow your mind. Don’t forget the guacamole. Chungas (180 south 900 west, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.953.1840)

1. Red Iguana

Although I will proudly stand by each of these restaurants, everything you want in a Mexican food is at Red Iguana. This is hands down, the best Mexican food in Salt Lake City and is also a consistent mention on our list of Top 10 Restaurants in Salt Lake City. We go there for special occasions, not so special occasions, and the occasional takeout. Both locations are always packed (for good reason) and not even a full mile from each other. Their servers do an excellent job at directing you through their gargantuan menu, but some of my favorites include the Puntas de Filete a la Norteña (pictured above and their number one selling dish), Tacos Don Ramon, and the Tacos a la Iguana. Red Iguana (original location- 736 West North Temple, Salt Lake City, UT // 801.322.1489)

Did you like this post?? Make sure to check out our list of Top 10 Restaurants in Salt Lake City. Orrrr our post on the Best Restaurants in Park City. Or better yet our FREE bucket list of 100 restaurants to try in Salt Lake City!

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    1. That sounds delicious!! Can’t say I’ve ever had it Mucker’s Style. Do you have to order it that way? Or is that what they’re normally bringing out to me? Mmmmmmm.

  1. Great list! There’s quite a few on here that I haven’t tried, so I’ll definitely have to check them out now. I’m kinda sad that El Chihuahua didn’t make the list though!

  2. My husband and I tried Alamexo for our anniversary tonight on your recommendation. It was amazing!! Most of the others are on our top places to eat but we hadn’t been there yet and it did not disappoint!! Thanks for your recommendation!

    1. Hey Becca! So glad you liked it and happy anniversary! It’s definitely a special occasion spot but I’m glad you had a good time and hope you enjoyed some table side guac 🙂

  3. Another one you might want to try is Cancun cafe. They have amazing Mexican food. Everyone I have taken there has loved it and has taken their friends back. It is located on 885 East 3900 South.

  4. La Hacienda in Draper has the best chimichangas! Their Spanish rice, as well as their in house salsa and chips are amazing as well.

  5. If you are willing to take a drive to Spanish Fork you can get some of the greatest salsa I have ever tasted at Casa Salza. It is avocado based and super yummy!!

  6. Hours recently changed at Hector’s–10:30am-8pm, closed Sundays. No more late-night burritos for me! 🙁
    (Still worth it though. The tortillas are so good, I’d eat them plain!)

  7. Por favor a real foodie would never list Red Iguana as number 1! I kid, I kid! Great list! A lesser known personal favorite of mine is Mi Lindo Nayarit off of 1300 S and State Street!

  8. I just don’t get Red Iguana. I have been there a couple of time over the years because friends HAVE to go there and every time I just find it unremarkable.

    I look forward to trying some of the other Mexican restaurants that I have not eaten at yet.

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Lisa! To each their own! I know that everyone doesn’t love Red Iguana but lucky there are so many other great spots. Hope you like some of the others on my list. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

  9. SO glad to see Chungas on your list. Their El Pastor tacos (and nachos and burritos and etc…) can’t be beat in the Salt Lake area! The people that work there are so friendly, too. It’s located in an off-beat neighborhood, but don’t let that fool you. It’s clean and they have a great place to eat outside.

  10. We love Mexican food (and have recently moved here from Denver )especially when paired with a really good margarita. Anyway to let me know which of these Mexican restaurants offer margaritas?

    1. Hi Renee! I’m not a drinker so I can’t tell you which of them have margaritas but I’d assume that most of them do! I have linked to all of the restaurant websites at the bottom of each section. 🙂

  11. Hi Brooke, I understand this post is really old, but I’m new to your blog. I am absolutely living it! Thanks so much for your hard work and efforts. I wanted to ask if you ever get to the west side of the valley? It seems all of your recommendations (at least a good portion) are downtown or on the east side. I don’t want to sound biased, or judgemental, but I, personally, would appreciate some places to try a little closer to home (currently Kearns). Being another predominant Latino community, we have a lot of really great Mexican restaurants. Obviously none as yummy as Red Iguana, but one favorite is Acapulco on 4700 S 4000 W. Fiesta Ole (fast food) has great crisp burritos, meat, chicken, or bean. Also, I can “testify” El Chubasco in Midway/Heber is amazing!! Anyway, thanks for your time!

    1. Hi Marissa- thanks so much for the kind words! It’s true that a lot of our recommendations are closest to downtown. While there are some great places to eat in other parts of the valley, this is where a lot of the good food is. I’m so excited to try Acapulco and Fiesta Ole! Really appreciate you sharing those recs. Love El Chubasco in Park City 🙂 It’s on my list of best restaurants in PC.

  12. I am a huge Mexican restaurant fan and love that there are so many options around me. One thing that I always looking for is good queso. Do you know of anywhere that has really good queso?

    1. Hi Michael! I just spent over a year in Austin and have really come to love delicious queso! Unfortunately, I haven’t tried any in Salt Lake City though. I’ll let you know if I come across any!