Unless you moved to LA this morning, you know about Taco Tuesday. What started out as an alliterative way to sell Mexican food has become a weekly Los Angeles holiday in its own right. All over the city, people who are already tired of the work week come together to eat discounted Mexican food and drink lots of margaritas. It’s a glorious thing.
What’s less glorious is the reality: because most of the best Mexican spots in town don’t participate, you usually end up with whatever spot is nearby, plus their weak margaritas, soggy tacos, and your awkward neighbors.
But that never has to happen to you again. All the restaurants on this guide offer Taco Tuesday deals and some reason to go, whether it’s genuinely great Mexican food, a good crowd, or places where you can just get sloppy drunk and deal with the consequences in the morning. Whatever you’re looking for in your Taco Tuesday, you’ll find the best version of it at one of these spots.
El Cholo is an LA institution that serves old-school Mexican food in large quantities and quality margaritas, also in large quantities. The space feels like a huge adobe house, with lots of booths and decor that looks like it hasn’t changed since the 60s. This is a perfect place to bring a big group.
The deal: $6 apps and $7 margaritas from 3 - 10pm
Gilbert’s is a place worth visiting any night of the week for its casual but fun atmosphere and legitimately good Mexican food. Taco Tuesday definitely draws a crowd, but it doesn’t turn into as much of a sh*tshow as some of the other places on this list.
The deal: $1 mini tacos after 4pm
Mondo Taco is a tiny, order-at-the-counter spot near the promenade, so don’t come here looking for a scene. Instead, come for the less authentic but pretty good taco fillings like Thai chicken, hot dog, or coconut shrimp. We like the Southern Decadence, which is a forced-fun way of saying fried chicken tacos.
The deal: 30% off all tacos from 7 - 10pm
Tacoteca is a slightly higher-end restaurant that serves expensive but good tacos and cocktails. Be warned: the servers tend to get overwhelmed on Tuesdays, so if it’s very crowded don’t expect to get your food fast.
The deal: all you can eat tacos $12.99 w/ 2 drink minimum, 4:30 - 7pm, 10pm - close
You might have seen this gaudy color-bomb patio filled with drunk people yelling at people on the promenade. You might have wondered if being that drunk in that crowded of a space could possibly be fun. On those occasions when you decide that it could, gather your loudest friends and head to Cabo Cantina on a Tuesday evening, and get ready to yell at some tourists.
The deal: $6 unlimited tacos and 2-for-1 drinks, all day
Venice / Palms
The Clutch is a grungy-beachy Venice restaurant serving Cali-Mex cuisine (a.k.a. they do Mexican food but also mac and cheese). The food here is really good, and on Tuesdays they also have live music, so Taco Tuesday feels like more of an event. The small-ish space gets crowded, so either make reservations or know you’re going to be waiting.
The deal: $3.25 tacos from 4 - 11pm
Duke’s is a bit of a tourist trap and a complete nightmare to get to if you live anywhere other than Malibu. But an unbeatable view of the ocean at sunset is enough to convince most people to brave the traffic. If you’re considering it on a Tuesday, the $3 tacos and lighter crowds might sway you.
The deal: $3 tacos 4pm-close
Casa Escobar has one of those annoying setups where you have to be seated in a certain area to get the Taco Tuesday or happy hour deals, but if you manage to find the right table and escape the feeling that you’re in 3rd grade with an overbearing teacher, it’s worth it. The old-school beachy atmosphere is a good setting for eating very good $1.50 tacos.
The deal: $1.50 tacos all day
Cafe Habana has one of the more expensive Taco Tuesday deals in Malibu, and you can definitely get better tacos for half that price a few minutes away. But what those other places don’t have is Cafe Habana’s patio situation, complete with couches and twinkly lights. They also don’t have the whole organic/health-conscious thing that will help you feel like you’re not ingesting a whole day’s worth of calories (you are).
The deal: $10 for 3 tacos all day
TLT used to be a well-loved food truck, and its brick and mortar location by UCLA is just as popular. As long as you don’t mind crowding in with a ton of college students who may or may not know how to handle their alcohol, TLT’s tacos are great (especially the ahi tuna).
The deal: $3 tacos all day
Kay n Daves is a Culver City go-to for Mexican food that will please just about anyone. The happy hour deals only apply at their communal tables, so show up prepared to mingle. But it’s worth it: the food is solid and the margaritas are strong.
The deal: Happy Hour every day 4-7pm with $1 mini tacos, $3.50 beers and margaritas, and more
Don Chuy’s is basically a dive bar with exposed brick walls and sports on the TVs. So if you’re looking for somewhere to drink cheap margaritas and eat tacos while you watch the game, this might be your place.
The deal: 99c tacos all day
Pink Taco was once seen as edgy because it dared to have a euphemism for a name. Now, most people have more or less forgotten about this perfectly fine, not exactly authentic Mexican restaurant serving overpriced tacos to tourists. But on Tuesdays, you have a reason to go. The menu is decent, there are about twenty margaritas to choose from, and the crowd is always having fun.
The deal: $3 tacos 4pm - close
If you just want to get irresponsible on a Tuesday with no judgement, Fiesta will welcome you with open arms. The food is passable, classic Mexican food, but this is way more of a drinking spot. The West Hollywood staple is filled with plastic palm trees, gaudy beach-themed murals, and people who probably don’t have to get up for work the next morning.
The deal: All you can eat for $7, 2-for-1 drinks
Pinches’ Sunset Strip location is the only one that allows BYOB. Add that to very good dollar tacos and you’ve got an ideal Taco Tuesday. Also, the space is much but less gimmicky than nearby options (we’re looking at you, Fiesta).
The deal: $1 tacos and $1 beers, all day
If your visiting friends want “Mexican food” but you know that means jalapeño poppers and tequila shots, just take them to Marix on a Tuesday. The food here is fine, but you’re here for their strong margaritas and a place where you can get rowdy, and on those fronts, Marix delivers.
The deal: all you can eat for $10, all day
Tortilla Republic isn’t the place to get an impressive meal, but it’s definitely the spot to hit when you want cheap margaritas on a Tuesday. Things don’t get as rowdy here as at Fiesta - it feels more like a neighborhood restaurant where all the locals are keeping it together enough so as to not be embarrassed the next time they visit.
The deal: $30 marg pitchers and 2 tacos for $6, 4 - 7pm
Barney’s is one of the most well-known bars in Los Angeles, and remains a consistently fun place to eat and drink. The food is above average for a sports bar, and on Taco Tuesday you’ll find a crowd of West Hollywood locals who are here to drink some margaritas and make some friends.
The deal: $2 Chicken or Beef Tacos, $3 Bud Lites, $4 Coronas, $6 Margaritas 10pm - 2am
There are a few Trejo’s Tacos around LA now, but the original on La Brea is our favorite. Trejo’s is a little more expensive than most taquerias (you’re paying for the star power, clearly), but on Tuesdays, the tacos are $2. They’re all solid, and there are also plenty of options for people who aren’t eating meat this week. Head here for a long lunch on the patio.
The deal: $2 street tacos all day
El Carmen has a happy hour every day at 5pm, but the crowd is most fun on Tuesdays. This dimly-lit Mexican cantina gets very loud, but serves decent food and lots of tequila, making it a long-standing neighborhood favorite.
The deal: $3 cans of Tecate, $4 margaritas, $2 guacamole, $5 combination platters (two tacos with rice and beans), and free chips and salsa, all day
Project Taco is not where you go when you want to feel like you’re sitting in a restaurant in Mexico City. It is where you go to get buffalo chicken tacos, or sub meat for a soy-based meat lookalike. The options are decent, the tables have Jenga and Connect-4, and there’s also lots of sangria and beer.
The deal: $9 for 3 tacos all day
It only opened recently, but we do not know how we got by for so long without La Carmencita. Come on a Tuesday, grab some drinks, and order the baja fish tacos with cheese - they melt it right onto the tortilla and it’s magic.
The deal: $2 off tacos all day
Yes, this place has a ridiculous name and is right on the touristy stretch of Hollywood Boulevard. But the tacos are far better than you’d expect based on those facts, and they’re cheap, and also there are lots of margaritas. The space is decorated with weird portraits that give it a theme park restaurant vibe, which is maybe requisite for renting a space on Hollywood and Highland.
The deal: $1 tacos + $15 beer pitchers all day
Mission Cantina is one of most overlooked casual dinner options in Hollywood - especially on Tuesdays when the tacos are a dollar. The tiny Mexican spot on Sunset doesn’t look like much from the outside, but inside it’s a good place to catch up with some friends.
The deal: $1 tacos and $5 margaritas all day
You’ve been to Calle Tacos before, you were just too drunk to totally remember. This food-truck-inside-a-building is a go-to spot to stumble into after drinking on Hollywood Boulevard, but it’s also a great place to come sober, because the tacos are worth actually tasting.
The deal: $1 street tacos 11am - midnight
Loteria is a chain, but they serve great tacos in a modern space that could almost make you forget you’re in the middle of Hollywood Blvd. The place can get pretty busy and tourist-filled, but if you don’t mind crowds and you just need a no-surprises meal, Loteria is a safe bet.
The deal: $3 tacos + $3 beer, all day
A sports bar in Koreatown that serves Mexican food and has a name that implies it’s a French cafe might not give you much confidence. But Cafe Bleu does make solid tacos that are very cheap on Tuesdays, and you can also watch the game here. It doesn’t get very busy, probably because most people who wander in leave once they realize they can’t order a croissant.
The deal: $1.50 asada tacos and $3 Corona all night
Lock & Key is one of our favorite LA speakeasies. It’s big enough to walk around in, the cocktails are great, and the back patio sometimes turns into a small concert venue. On Tuesdays they have dollar tacos and a lot of people with tattoos eating those dollar tacos.
The deal: $1 tacos 7pm - 1am
The Mexican Village serves classic Mexican food and good margaritas in large quantities (i.e. pitchers). The atmosphere is casual, although when it gets crowded enough people tend to start dancing, if that’s something you’re looking for on a Tuesday night.
The deal: $1 tacos, $15 margarita pitchers, all day
Los Feliz / Silver Lake / Atwater Village
Atwater Village Tavern looks like a classic college bar, except no one is wearing a frat tank and the cocktails aren’t just variations of sweet and sour mix. This isn’t a Mexican restaurant so much as it just serves some Mexican food, but they still have a Taco Tuesday deal worth knowing about.
The deal: $5 margs + $2.50 tacos, 4 - 7pm
Most days, the tacos at this Silver Lake restaurant are too expensive for what they are. So come on Tuesdays, when the fish tacos are only 99 cents. They have a colorful patio that would be even better with a few margaritas, which unfortunately La Playita doesn’t serve.
The deal: 99c fish tacos all day
33 Taps is a neighborhood sports bar that’s big and bright and actually enjoyable to be in. The food here is solid, there’s plenty of good beer, and the place gets crowded but not sloppy.
The deal: 2 tacos for $3.33, all day
This casual, cool Los Feliz restaurant serves the kind of crowd-pleasing food you want to eat after a day from hell. On Tuesdays, you can sit outside on their patio (see if you can grab a spot by the fire pit) and snack on dollar oysters and tacos - they’re small, but cheap enough that you can order a bunch.
The deal: $1 tacos and $1 oysters all day
Glendale / Highland Park
Frida is a chain across LA serving perfectly fine Mexican food and margaritas. If you don’t want to leave Glendale, your options are limited, but Frida is a safe choice.
The deal: $3.50 tacos all day
This divey spot in Highland Park looks like the cellar of a Mexican distillery. It’s dark and somewhat creepy (bat decorations are present), but also really fun. There are tiny nooks for you and your friends to take over, an excellent back patio, happy hour from 5-9pm every day, and most importantly, free tacos after 10pm.
The deal: $5 drinks and bar food 5pm - 9pm and free tacos after 10pm
There’s not a whole lot to dislike about Cacao Mexicatessen. The order-at-the-counter Mexican restaurant in Eagle Rock has a fantastic Baja-inspired menu and a decent taco deal, the atmosphere is more laid-back than other Taco Tuesdays, and the staff stays friendly even during the busy hours.
The deal: $1.85 tacos and $5 margaritas, 5pm - close
Casa La Doña is worth a trip any day of the week - the food is fresh, the tortillas are handmade, and everything is affordable. Also, they have 18 types of salsa. The order-at-the-counter space gets pretty crowded on Tuesdays, because other people know how great this spot is too. Just know they don’t serve alcohol.
The deal: $1 tacos all day
Chicas Tacos is a model taqueria: ultra friendly service, a tiny, casual space, and solid, authentic Mexican food. It gets busy on a regular night, so expect a long wait on Taco Tuesdays. But the wait is worth it for their fish tacos.
The deal: $2.50 mini tacos all day