Photo credits: Birria-Landia Tacos

12 Best Mexican Restaurants In NYC To Eat At In 2024 (+ What To Order)

Looking for the best Mexican restaurants in NYC? Well, you’re in the right place!

Yes, Los Angeles is the no. 1 city in America that comes to mind when you think about good and authentic Mexican food.

But, New York City now comes pretty close with its array of Mexican restaurants.

So, if you’re thinking Mexican for your next meal in NYC, check out this list of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC.

1. Los Tacos No. 1

Photo credits: audree.eats

What’s Mexican food without tacos?! When it comes to tacos in NYC, you cannot look past Los Tacos No. 1, a place that introduced authentic Mexican tacos to this part of the country.

The combination of family recipes and fresh ingredients makes the food at Los Tacos drool-worthy, which can be enjoyed in five different locations within the city.

Obviously, your first order at Los Tacos SHOULD be tacos, and our all-time favorite is their Carne Asada or grilled steak tacos. The tortillas (corn or flour) are fluffy and hold up really well, and they come piled on with beautifully grilled steak along with other condiments.

After your first bite, we bet you’ll easily finish your tacos within five minutes, they’re that good!

And then there’s Adobada or marinated pork tacos. The meat is super juicy and the addition of pineapple on top goes great with the savouriness and saltiness of the pork.

If you’re vegetarian, There’s Nopal or grilled cactus tacos. Topped with onion, cilantro, guac, and salsa, the grilled cactus is slightly tart yet super tasty.

A secret menu item you should ask for is their Queso Taco. The shell in this taco is made entirely with cheese, and you can have it filled with your favorite meat and all your favorite toppings. It looks and tastes delish.

What to order: Carne Asada Taco, Adobada Taco, Nopal Taco, Queso Taco

-Chelsea Market – 75 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10011
-NoHo – 340 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012
-Times Square – 229 W 43rd Street, New York, NY 10036
-Grand Central – 125 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017
-Tribeca – 136 Church Street, New York, NY 10007

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2. Los Mariscos

Photo credits: chelseamarketny

From the team of Los Tacos No. 1, Los Mariscos brings you fish and shrimp tacos, ceviche, cocteles, and more in this Chelsea Market location.

Complete with a raw bar, this counter-serving Mexican seafood restaurant is always bustling.

The Fish Taco is authentic and delightful. The handmade tortillas act as an excellent vessel to hold the perfectly battered and fried fish, which is fresh, flaky, and amazing, and the sauce they drizzle on top is really tasty.

The Shrimp Taco is as good as the fish, but the Enchilado Taco or spicy shrimp taco is even better and has an oomph to it.

While the shrimp are good on their own, the hot sauce added on top just elevates the whole dish.

And you got to try the Especial Ceviche. You get pieces of shrimp, scallops, clams, and octopus in a flavourful dressing, served atop a crispy tortilla shell, and topped with avocado slices. It’s super fresh and delicious.

What to order: Fish Taco, Shrimp Taco, Especial Ceviche

Address: 409 W 15th Street, New York, NY10011

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3. Toloache

Photo credits: Toloache

Named after a popular flowering plant in Mexico, Toloache is an array of modern Mexican bistros, featuring chef-owner Julian Medina’s creative cooking.

With a wood-burning oven in place and an extensive tequila list, this two-story space is fun, festive, and vibrant.

Start with their Guacamole. What’s so special? Well, they have three different variations you can try – Traditional Mild, Frutas Medium, and Rojo Spicy.

While we’d suggest that you go full-on adventure mode and enjoy the spicy version with their warm tortilla chips, you could try all three by getting the Trio de Guacamoles.

If you’ve heard about Chef Medina, you’re probably aware that he’s famed for his ceviches, and his Hamachi is to die for! This yellowtail ceviche has the best possible flavor combinations, and the crispy avocado on top adds a beautiful contrast to the plate.

Do yourself a favor and order the Carne Asada plate. With a well-seasoned, perfectly grilled, and delightfully juicy and tender skirt steak, creamy guacamole, potato gratin, and satisfyingly cheesy enchilada covered in flavor-packed mole sauce, this is a plate of food you’ll remember for a long long time to come.

Their Coconut Mojito is the best drink you can have on your table, lunch, or dinner!

What to order: Rojo Spicy Guacamole, Trio de Guacamoles, Hamachi, Carne Asada plate, Coconut Mojito

-251 W 50th Street, New York, NY 10019
-166 E 82nd Street, New York, NY 10028

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4. La Contenta

Photo credits: cindy.inthecity

A Lower East Side Mexican place, La Contenta is a small but mighty space that serves incredibly authentic Mexican food in an elegant setting with French accents.

With an all-Mexican wine list and skillfully prepared food, La Contenta will seriously impress you.

While their Guacamole Tradicional is authentic and delicious, the La Contenta Nachos is likely to impress you more. Crispy and crunchy tortilla chips, black beans, pico de gallo, different types of cheeses, avocado sauce, and sour cream, this heaping plate of nachos is pure satisfaction and possibly the best you can find in the city.

Tacos de Pescado or fish tacos is one of everyone’s favorites from the restaurant’s menu. With beautifully golden, crispy, and flaky fish, and all the other fixings, these tacos are irresistibly good.

When it comes to Mexican food, Enchilada is always a favorite; the shrimp enchiladas at La Contenta or Enchiladas de Camarón are fabulous! Stuffed with pan-roasted shrimp, lots of cheese, salsa, and sour cream, this dish is savory goodness.

If you’re here for brunch or just craving, La Contenta’s Huevos Rancheros is the real deal. It’s saucy, cheesy, delicious, and makes your mouth water.

What to order: Guacamole Tradicional, Tacos de Pescado, Enchiladas de Camarón, Huevos Rancheros

Address: 102 Norfolk Street, New York, NY 10002

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5. El Centro

Photo credits: El Centro

Located in the heart of Hell’s Kitchen, El Centro makes Mexican food that Grandma would approve of. The menu has a mix of both authentic and unique flavors from Mexico, and complete with a festive bar, the place is warm, fun, and friendly and ideal for dining with family and friends.

The Braised Short Rib Tacos here are FIRE! The meat is tender and juicy, and you get big chunks in your tacos. The tamarind-based sauce adds depth to the filling, making this the most popular item on the menu.

The Roasted Chicken Quesadilla is a really good entree. There is a nice crunch to the homemade tortilla, and the filling is quite generous, with a good amount of cheese.

The chipotle salsa adds a slightly different dimension to the flavors, and all the toppings make this a filling dish.

Another highly recommended dish is the Grilled Steak Chilaquiles. From the fried corn tortilla base to the perfectly grilled, pinkish steak to the mildly spicy and flavourful salsa, everything on the plate works together to make this dish taste sublime!

What to order: Braised Short Rib Tacos, Roasted Chicken Quesadilla, Grilled Steak Chilaquiles

Address: 824 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10019

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6. Mamasita Bar & Grill

Photo credits: Mamasita Bar & Grill

Mamasita Bar & Grill is a favorite among the locals of Midtown West for the freshest Mexican food with authentic flavors. With lots of gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options on the menu, and not to forget, an extensive list of margarita flavors, this place attracts patrons from around the world.

The Chef’s Special Fajitas come highly recommended (by us too!). Served with whole wheat tortillas, beans, rice, and more, you can choose between different protein options, like grilled chicken, rib eye steak, and seafood. We went with the chicken and mixed seafood option, and we instantly knew we made the right decision!

From the Vegetarian menu, we tried the Sizzling Vegetable Fajitas, and they were absolutely delicious.

If you’re on the hunt for the best Chimichanga in NYC, Mamasita’s is a strong contender to consider. Again, you can choose between different protein options, but we urge you to go with the grilled steak and veggies option.

You get a huge tortilla roll stuffed with all things Mexican; the roll remains crispy on the outside (without getting all soggy), and explodes with flavor in every bite.

With their margaritas considered the best in Midtown, how can you not try a couple?!

We love The Refresher and the Lychee Beach from their seasonal menu.

What to order: Chef’s Special Fajitas, Sizzling Vegetable Fajitas, Steak & Veggies Chimichanga, The Refresher, Lychee Beach

Address: 818 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10019

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Photo credits: ATLA

ATLA is a casual restaurant serving simple, traditional yet inventive Mexican food all day. Apart from the contemporary and elegant setting, what allures people to this place is the quality of food, which is second to none of the high-end restaurants you find in NYC.

First things first, order something from their Classic Cocktails menu, like the refreshing Eastside, before perusing the food menu.

Served with corn tostadas, the Guacamole at ATLA is expertly made! Made fresh and topped with herbs, this guacamole is rich, buttery, smooth, herby, and all sorts of delish!

Mushrooms en Salsa Verde – earthy, well-seasoned, and delicious, you should make these mushrooms a part of your Mexican meal here in some way or the other; have them in this salad form, add them to your quesadilla, or pair them with rice, the choice is yours, but they’re a must try!

Pork al Pastor Gringa is a Mexican street food, a taco version, that comes with juicy braised pork meat, fragrant and sweet pineapple butter, cheese, and more. It is savory, mildly sweet, and spectacular.

Even the Chicken Soup at ATLA is splendid. Not too salty chicken broth, slightly crunchy veggies, juicy poached chicken, and rice – warmth and comfort in a bowl!

What to order: Eastside cocktail, Guacamole, Mushrooms en Salsa Verde, Pork al Pastor Gringa, Chicken Soup

Address: 372 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012

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8. Blue Maiz

Photo credits: Blue Maiz

Everything prepared following traditional Mexican practices, Blue Maiz is another gem in New York’s Midtown, where the food is made using natural, non-genetically modified ingredients, sourced from local markets.

This counter-serve Mexican restaurant has a laid-back vibe, and its build-your-own tacos and burritos menus are a huge hit among diners.

Their Naked Burrito bowl is excellent. Filled with your choice of meat (we love the grilled chicken in cilantro lime marinade), beans, veggies, and rice, this bowl is fresh, filling, and flavourful. 

Served with rice and beans, their Chorizo Chimichangas are seriously delicious. Slightly crispy on the outside and filled with loads of deliciousness, these are fierce!

Want to know the ultimate build-your-own taco from Blue Maiz? Choose blue corn tortillas + pork carnitas + chipotle crema + shredded cheese + pico de gallo; thank us later!

The Chicken Tortilla Soup is really flavourful, with a nice amount of spice and big shreds of chicken – so soothing and delicious.

What to order: Naked Burrito bowl, Chorizo Chimichangas, Blue Corn Tacos, Chicken Tortilla Soup

Address: 606 8th Avenue, New York, NY 10018

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9. Oxomoco

Photo credits: bazdarich

Authentic Mexican food with a bit of creativity prepared in a wood-fired oven, classic cocktails, and a breezy atmosphere – that’s everything you need to know about the Michelin-rated Oxomoco.

Finished with a beautiful patio, the vibe here is chill, the service is excellent, and the food is exciting.

Start with the straightforward classics, like tacos. The most popular one here is the Lamb Barbacoa. The lamb is soft, juicy, and perfectly cooked, and comes paired with squash blossom, watercress, and salsa pipicha; while the toppings are different than usual (some even unheard of!), they do work and add a balance of flavors to the tacos.

A pleasant surprise would be the Beet “Chorizo” Tacos. These are vegan tacos, with no meat, but taste really sweet/savory and delicious, you’ll love it!

The Soya Marinated Tuna Tostada is outstanding! The tuna tastes fresh, the tostada is nice and crunchy, and the sauce just brightens up the dish.

Cool off with one of their frozen cocktails, like the Frozen Nopalito. An unbeatable combination of fresh mint and spicy cucumber with tequila.

What to order: Lamb Barbacoa Tacos, Beet “Chorizo” Tacos, Soya Marinated Tuna Tostada, Frozen Nopalito

Address: 128 Greenpoint Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11222

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10. Amigo by Nai

Photo credits: Amigo

A modern Mexican restaurant from the amazing team of Nai, Amigo brings to you West Coast Mexican fare, and like any Nai restaurant, the quality of the food delivered here stands out.

While the place is rather compact and intimate, the vibe is casual and the food is definitely high-end.

Before we go on and on about Amigo’s classic Mexican dishes, you should know about their Seasonal Fish preparation. You get a whole seasonal fish lightly battered and fried to golden brown perfection, juicy, and flaky, and topped with pico de gallo and herbs. It’s fresh, fragrant, and divine!

The Birria Taco, served with consomme, has juicy and savory beef stew for the filling, along with salsa. You can dip your taco into the consomme and enjoy; but, the consomme is so good, you’d want to dive into it yourself!

The Carrot Tostada is a great option for vegetarians; the roasted carrot has a mild sweetness to it, and the spicy glaze introduces a contrasting flavor. Along with the creamy frijoles and nutty sesame seeds, this tostada can be ranked among the best.

What to order: Seasonal Fish, Birria Taco, Carrot Tostada

Address: 29 2nd Avenue, New York, NY 10003

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11. Birria Landia

Photo credits: Birria-Landia Tacos

Well well, who would’ve thought a Mexican food truck would make this list?! Birria Landia deserves this spot and is popular for its Tijuana-style birria. The menu at this legendary NYC food truck is rather small, but the flavors they deliver are deep and unforgettable.

Yes, their Birria Tacos should naturally be your first order. Vocally certified by many as the very best birria in NYC, these tacos come with soft corn tortillas, chopped birria that just falls apart and absolutely flavorful, and fresh onions and cilantro on top. You have to try it to understand how good it is!

Of course, you have to get Birria Landia’s Consomé to experience the well of flavors. This is birria broth with chopped birria and fresh onion and cilantro. Dunk your birria tacos into this well of flavor and find yourself in a transverse universe!

Their Mulitas are cheese lovers’ paradise. Layered on corn tortillas are chopped birria, melted mozzarella, onion, cilantro, and more cheese (grated).

Watch your mouth water as you take apart the oozy, cheesy layers; no wonder this is a fan favorite!

What to order: Birria Tacos, Consomé, Mulitas

-Lower East Side – East Houston Street & 1st Avenue, Lower East Side, NY 10002
-Queens – 77-99 Roosevelt Avenue, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
-Brooklyn – 491 Metropolitan Avenue, Williamsburg, NY 11211
-Bronx – 2501 Grand Concourse, Fordham, NY 10468

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12. Tacos Güey

Photo credits: Tacos Güey

Located in the heart of New York’s Flatiron District, Tacos Güey is a contemporary restaurant known for offering inventive Mexican cuisine in an intimate, inviting, classy, and captivating setting.

Paired with extraordinary service, this place gets raving reviews from everyday diners and food experts alike.

Tuna Crudo – finished with avocado crema and serrano chile, this delicate dish would be the perfect kickoff to an incredible Mexican meal.

Birria – at Tacos Güey, Birria is lamb shank rather than beef, and this one is pure bliss, especially with the consommé.

Churros – pillowy soft and slightly crispy, coated with sugar, and served with decadent milk chocolate sauce. Perfect way to end your meal!

What to order: Tuna Crudo, Birria, Churros

Address: 37 W 19th Street, New York, NY 10011

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Planning a slightly longer stay in Brooklyn? We have a list of the best Brooklyn restaurants for you to try!