PHLGuide

Where To Eat Mexican Pizza In Philly

The 9 best Mexican pizzas in town.
Where To Eat Mexican Pizza In Philly  image

photo credit: NICOLE GUGLIELMO

Philly might be best known for its cheesesteaks, hoagies, and unhinged fans, but there’s a lesser-known dish that’s carved out a special place in our hearts: Mexican pizza. From pies topped with salsa verde and cilantro or marinated steak and pulled chicken, there’s a perfect slice for everyone. And after eating a concerning yet delicious amount, we’ve put together a guide to the very best the city has to offer. Here are the 9 places to get everything you’ve ever loved about a taco or torta on a cheesy, crispy crust. 

THE SPOTS

photo credit: NICOLE GUGLIELMO

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Mexican

Passyunk Square

$$$$Perfect For:Walk-InsTakeawayDeliverySerious Take-Out OperationQuick EatsCheap Eats
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Rosario’s Pizzeria has two locations in the city—one in Passyunk Square and the other in the Northeast—and at both, you’ll get pizza good enough to shout about them from the top of the Rocky Steps, One Liberty, or whatever doubles as a mountaintop around here. They make New York-style pizzas in varieties like al pastor, which gets a kick from the guajillo pepper base, marinated pork, and pineapple, and the Mexicana, topped with avocado and sausage. If you’re in the mood for pizzas with lots of cheese, Oprah's garden’s worth of chilis, and hefty chunks of quality Mexican meat, this is the place. 

photo credit: NICOLE GUGLIELMO

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As the name suggests, East Passyunk’s Juana Tamale is all about the tamales, and they do them very well. But they also do tacos, burritos, and everything in between on the same exceptional level. So it’s no surprise that their pizza is great—and is an ideal compromise on a day when you can’t choose between tacos and a slice. Their Mexi-pizza stacks onions, tomatoes, beans, a tangy red roja sauce, and Mexican cheese on top of a crust made from flour tortillas—which does a really good job holding it all together. The combination is like a glorious open-faced taco that you can share (but only if you want to).

El Mezcal Cantina is one of our favorite places in the city for tacos, aguachile, and mezcal cocktails. And judging by the crowd during Happy Hour, we’re not alone. But another reason you should visit the colorful Point Breeze shop is for their crispy slices of Mexican perfection. Our go-to pies are the Huasteco—topped with poblano peppers, corn, and chorizo—and the Carnitas al Mezcal—a stunner that comes with a massive hunk of tender pork in the center. Show up for a casual meal, stare at the wood-fired oven until your pizza comes out, and choose from the dozens of tequilas they have to round out your night.

Located in Grays Ferry, this takeout-only place is equal parts torta shop and pizzeria. And while you can certainly go for a sizeable bolillo bun packed with chicken, tomato, and jalapeños, why not get all of that on a cheesy pizza? We usually get the Al Pastor or Pizza Ranchera, which is topped with refried beans, pickled jalapeño, chorizo, and creamy Oaxacan cheese. They offer sizes from personal all the way up to 18”, which works when a gigantic slice eases the pain of whatever sports team is letting you down that day. Make sure you throw in refreshing passion fruit licuado (a Mexican smoothie) to wash it all down.

Tonalli is a new place, but the Pennsport BYOB is quickly becoming one of our favorite places for tacos, nachos, and pizza covered with salsa. The pizzas here lean NYC style, with a lighter, crispier base and a blistered crust that’s never too chewy or hard. We like the Al Pastor, but it’s the El Patriota that we think of often. Each slice is sprinkled with ribeye steak, poblano peppers, mozzarella, red onion, and sauteed radish. You can grab a pizza for takeout here, or grab a seat and stuff your face surrounded by plants, Mexican plates on the wall, and a yellow dining room full of people doing exactly the same. 

You lose all concept of what a pizza actually is at this small South Philly shop. There are 34 choices and they come heart-shaped, smothered in chipotle ranch, and even topped with noodles. No matter which you go for, the crusts are thin, foldable, and have a satisfying crunch. When it comes to specialty pies, we love the Carnitas Chilejo and Birria Bruja. They’re both layered with warm strips of juicy meat and you’ll want to take each slice for a joyride in sauces like creamy jalapeno salsa or spicy consommé.    

Open daily from 10am to 5am—yes, you read that right—this cozy South Philly taqueria is one of our favorite places to grab tacos in town, no matter the hour. So it’s not shocking that their vinyl-sized pizza is equally impressive. The crust is super crispy, so you get a nice crackle even under a mountain of cilantro, black beans, marinated chicken, and peppers. Go for their Fajita de Asada, Chorizo, or Tinga, which are all red salsa-based. It’s takeout only, so grab a fresh pizza and head to Mifflin Square Park nearby with the scent of sour cream and jalapeños wafting through the air along the way. 

We’re big fans of South Philly’s San Lucas Pizza. Everything from their tacos and quesadillas to loaded-up huaraches is consistently good. We’d also start a fan club for the pizza here, especially the Pizza San Lucas and Pizza Alambre. The first blends stewed chicken, jalapeños, onion, and Mexican cheese, and the latter is a mashup of juicy steak, chiles, and melty queso fundido. And since most pizzas here are spicy enough to give your mouth a subtle burn, never leave without a Mexican Coke or bottle of Sidral from the fridge. 

Whitman’s Pizza & Tacos Las Nieves is open until midnight on the weekend, making it one of the neighborhood's favorite late-night spots for tortas and taco cravings after a night at South Bowl. No matter when you happen to find yourself at the takeout spot, grab the Chicken Mole pizza, topped with a savory blend of tender chicken, smoky mole sauce, and slices of avocado. We also love the Carnitas pizza, topped with layers of crispy pork, cilantro, and onions with a nice queso skirt around the edges. Like most local spots, you may have to stand in line and hear about a stranger’s “worst day ever”—until they get handed a box of something that will make it the complete opposite.

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