ATXReview

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Cuantos Tacos image
9.0

Cuantos Tacos

MexicanTacos

East Austin

$$$$Perfect For:Cheap EatsOutdoor/Patio Situation

Included In

Blink and you might miss this little food truck in the Arbor Food Park on East 12th street, which has some of the best Mexico City-style street tacos in Austin. Cuantos Tacos has a tight menu of classics like suadero and carnitas, as well as a few less-common options, like buche (pork stomach). Show up on a Wednesday and you can even pick up their very popular weekly lengua special.

Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Cuantos Tacos image
Cuantos Tacos image
Cuantos Tacos image
Cuantos Tacos image

Rather than making their tortillas themselves, they bring them in from the Colonial Tortilla Factory in San Antonio, which produces 100% nixtamalized corn tortillas for some of the best taquerias in the state. And the tortillas are perfect: Small, and barely three inches across—we’d wrap ourselves in a blanket of these if they were just a little bit bigger. Instead, the meats—finely-diced and cooked in lard—get to enjoy that luxury.

Everything can be made as tacos or quesadillas, and at just over $2 and $7, respectively, they’re affordable enough that you can (and should) try out most of the menu. We like just about everything here, but our favorites are probably the champiñones quesadillas and the suadero tacos. And don’t skip on the beans. It’s rare that a side dish like beans can make a lasting impression, but somehow Cuantos makes it happen.

Food Rundown

Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Tacos

If you show up to Cuantos and don’t end up with some tacos (or quesadillas), you were probably at the wrong yellow truck. Keep going, that was a school bus. We’re fans of the suadero - a thin cut that tastes like if brisket and carne asada had a little taco baby. The buche is great, and if you’re feeling something really rich, get the cachete (beef cheeks). All of the tacos come on a double layer of thin, chewy corn tortillas, and topped with onions and cilantro.
Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Nicolai McCrary

Lengua

Make your way to Cuantos on a Wednesday and you’ll probably find a small line, inevitably there for the weekly lengua special. The beef tongue is the only meat at Cuantos that doesn’t come finely diced, but rather as a single, rectangular slab. It’s tender, but with just enough chew to retain some texture. And it sells out almost every week, so if you’re fortunate enough to have it as an option, you should probably throw in an order.
Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Richard Casteel

Quesadillas

The quesadillas here are the only things you’ll find on a flour tortilla. Small, compact, and stuffed full of cheese and a filling. We really like the champiñones (mushroom) quesadilla. It might actually be our favorite thing at Cuantos, and it’s only made better when you add in the grilled onions that are served alongside it.
Cuantos Tacos image

photo credit: Nicolai McCrary

Frijoles Especiales

Yep, we’re still talking about the beans. It’s more of a spicy bean soup, filled with random scraps of meat, onion, jalapeños, broth, and a handful of beans. It’s cheap, delicious, and you should probably get an order or two.

Included In

FOOD RUNDOWN

Suggested Reading

Suerte image
8.5

Suerte

Suerte is an upscale Mexican spot on East Sixth with a buzzy dining room and excellent tortillas.

Comedor image
8.0

Head to Comedor for upscale Mexican food in a sleek space downtown.

Veracruz All Natural image
8.0

Veracruz in East Austin makes some of the best migas tacos in Austin. You won’t be mad at the quesadillas, either.

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