Texas, and especially San Antonio, has a relationship with Mexican culture like no other, resulting in a cuisine that befits this great city, its history, and its people. Mexican restaurants here range from very niche to all-encompassing Tex-Mex and we wouldn’t dream of leaving any of the Female Foodie-approved spots off of our guide to the best Mexican restaurants in San Antonio.
The Very Best Mexican Restaurants in San Antonio
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Garcia’s is a San Antonio landmark serving up traditional Mexican and Tex-Mex comfort food that will absolutely put the cherry (or guac) on top of your day. Their menu is comprehensive with a taco selection that is beyond extensive featuring favorites like the puerco con chile, brisket, and bone-in pork chop tacos. The rice here is particularly savory and perfectly textured, a must-get accompaniment to any dish you decide on. Garcia’s is an ideal place to spend your lunch hour taking care of that Mexican comfort food craving that you’ve had all week.
Garcia’s Mexican Food
$$$$ Breakfast & Brunch, Tacos, Tex-Mex842 Fredericksburg Rd, San Antonio, TX 78201 • 210-735-4525
10. La Fonda on Main
Tucked away in the midtown Monte Vista neighborhood, is La Fonda on Main—a homely, adobe-style restaurant from 1932, serving some of San Antonio’s finest, elevated Tex-Mex and central Mexican cuisine. With vibrant tiled tables lining a shaded patio, La Fonda on Main is one of the best Mexican restaurants in San Antonio for its diverse menu, and colorful, inviting atmosphere. One of our favorite items is the tacos de pato, which features slow-roasted shredded duck stuffed between dense homemade corn tortillas, with a refreshing mango and avocado spinach side salad. Unsure about duck? Trust us on this one—it’s crisp on the outside, tender to the bite, and delivers a flavor so rich, you may not be able to go back to typical tacos.
La Fonda On Main
$$$$ Mexican, Tex-Mex2415 N Main Ave, San Antonio, TX 78212 • 210-733-0621
9. Ajuua Mexican Grill
Ajuua Mexican Grill is a small Mexican restaurant tucked away at the end of an unassuming strip mall. The food is fresh and so well-cooked. And WOW, their chili relleno with creamy cilantro sauce might just solve some of the world’s problems. Per the tradition of this region, you’ll often get stewed black beans or charro beans which are more of a flavorful bean soup than a mash. They are a side dish that brings excellent balance to the meal and are absolutely worthy of making their way onto your plate. Their fajita enchilada casserole is a comfort food staple. It’s a plate of slow roasted pork that comes with fresh tortillas for you to layer on the onions, cilantro, and pork.
Ajuúa! Mexican Grill
$$$$ Mexican, Breakfast & Brunch, Tex-Mex11703 Huebner Rd #208, San Antonio, TX 78230 • 210-877-0600
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The San Antonio Riverwalk is saturated with very underwhelming Mexican and Tex-Mex options, but a go-to spot for quality Mexican dining on the edge of N. St. Mary’s St. and E. Houston St., right next to historic hotel Valencia is Acénar. This multi-level eatery offers innovative dishes and elevated classics in a vibrant setting with a stunning riverside balcony. The short-rib tacos are Tex-Mex at its finest—tender, flavorful short rib on a beautiful corn tortilla, topped with a spicy, tangy slaw. Perfection. The Alambres mini skewers are a great start to any meal and absolutely try the bread pudding to finish.
Acenar Mexican Restaurant
$$$$ Mexican, Bars146 E Houston St, San Antonio, TX 78205 • (210) 222-2362
7. El Buen Gusto
Another worthy neighborhood stop on our guide to the best Mexican restaurants in San Antonio is El Buen Gusto. This is our absolute favorite place for chilaquiles that are crunchy and soft in all the right places and soaked in salsa verde and egg yolk. Both the corn and flour tortillas here are hot, fresh, and the perfect accompaniment for mopping up leftover sauce or turning your chilaquiles into a migas taco.
El Buen Gusto Mexican Cafe
$$$$ Mexican7709 Tezel Rd, San Antonio, TX 78250 • 210-681-1773
6. Pollos Asados Los Norteños
Mesquite chargrilled chicken, commonly found in the Mexican city of Monterrey (where a lot of the staff here are from), is the staple at Pollos Asados Los Norteños and it is the best you can find in the city. It’s that simple. And it’s that good. This is a great spot to take a group, order a whole chicken, plus sides, and devour family style with hot fresh tortillas. On your way out, get a chicken to-go for the best soup or chicken salad of your life the next day.
Pollos Asados Los Norteños
$$$$ Mexican, Spanish, Latin American4642 Rigsby Ave, San Antonio, TX 78222 • 210-648-3303
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5. La Panaderia
Two talented brothers celebrating their Mexican heritage through the art of baking have given us the gift of La Panaderia. A well-loved San Antonian bakery comprised of all that is good about this city’s food scene and culture, La Panaderia offers traditional Mexican eats. You must try the pan dulce, infused with the influence of western baking techniques, which gives it a familiar yet totally unique texture and flavor. Take some slightly charred birote loaves home with you for lunch or dinner, or for a perfect breakfast try the tequila almond croissant with a chorizo and egg torta. No guide to the best Mexican restaurants in San Antonio would be complete without La Panaderia.
La Panaderia – Houston St.
$$$$ Breakfast & Brunch, Bakeries, Cafes301 E Houston St, San Antonio, TX 78205 • 210-592-6264
Tucked alongside Hotel Havana’s historic mansion, is Ocho, a Latin-inspired eatery situated in a beautifully designed glass conservatory, overlooking a less crowded section of the San Antonio Riverwalk system. Serving a Sunday brunch, daily lunch and dinner, drinks, and late-night snacks, Ocho’s culturally curated menu reflects the roots of Mexico’s influence here in South Texas. Their Salsa Platter or Panela a la Plancha are starter favorites and we recommend the Al Pastor Pork or Chimichurri Steak for dinner. When making reservations definitely ask for a table with a view of the river and don’t forget to order the churros.
$$$$ Lounges, Latin American1015 Navarro St, San Antonio, TX 78205 • (210) 222-2008
Cascabel Mexican Patio is ranked so high on our guide to the best Mexican restaurants in San Antonio because of the food they serve (duh), but if this was a guide to the cutest Mexican restaurants in San Antonio, it would be number one. Its large, atmospheric patio and vintage San Antonio vibes give us all the heart eyes, but it’s the deliciousness of the food that keeps us coming back. The food is made from scratch and a little rustic (which we love) and their take on tacos is more traditional Mexican than Tex-Mex, which is showcased in their smoky, spicy, slow-braised meats and mole. We highly recommend the tacos with cochinita pibil, tinga, or puerco a la cascabel, and the Huaraches. The Huaraches is a beautiful array of meat, cabbage, cilantro, onions, green salsa, and sour cream piled high on a thick-enough-to-do-the-job corn tortilla. Cascabel Mexican Patio is a place where we have zero hesitation in trying something new and always get the limeade.
Cascabel Mexican Patio
$$$$ Mexican1000 S St Mary's St, San Antonio, TX 78205 • 210-212-6456
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Panfila serves Mexican food that is just as good as it is beautiful. Their menu of traditional, elevated favorites is delicious and a welcomed reprieve from the monotony of Tex-Mex in the city. Their tortas are juicy and flavorful with the addition of pan-fried Oaxaca cheese and their omelets make a satisfying and hearty meal any time of day. Panfila has done the best job of breathing new life into beloved traditional Mexican dishes.
$$$$ Mexican22250 Bulverde Rd #114, San Antonio, TX 78261 • 210-455-0702
Mixtli, the best Mexican restaurant in San Antonio, is unique, in that its quarterly menu focuses on the past and present of a selected region of Mexico and the flavors and ingredients that derived over the years from that area. This results in an animated 10-course, prix fixe menu that serves up an extensive history of flavor, dish origins, and ingredients that will leave you with a newfound knowledge of Mexico and have you questioning if you ever really knew anything about Mexican food at all. Its current menu, focusing on the Puebla region, boasts four different and intricate mole sauces, black bean garlic soup with frothed Guayanés cheese, poblano sorbet, and the most tender beef tongue shrouded in mesquite smoke. It is a meal for a special occasion for sure, but not one to be missed when wanting to experience a unique culinary journey steeped in history.