Top 20 Authentic Mexican Restaurants Exclusive In Tyler, TX 2023

The search for the best Mexican restaurant in Tyler, TX, may be challenging as many options exist. However, I’ll list all the top-rate options in this article and why they stand out from the rest.

Moreover, you’ll find various tips and recommended dishes in each place, so no dining experience will be a miss. With different choices, from casual to upscale, I believe you will soon become an expert on the Mexican culinary scene in Tyler.

20 Amazing Restaurants For Mexican Cuisine Lovers In Tyler, TX

These dining spots below will satisfy even your native Mexican friends. Each restaurant has its own specialties, so you will never get bored even through all the choices.

1. Abuelo’s Mexican Restaurant

Abuelo opened its first location in 1989 to offer Texas citizens authentic Mexican cuisine at affordable prices. Now, it already has countless branches in 9 states, including this Tyler’s restaurant.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Aiming to create the most comfortable space for customers, Abuelo follows the open-air courtyard concept, as it uses several artificial trees inside. Combined with other traditional and modern Mexican decorations, you’ll feel like you’re sitting in Mexico.

As one of the best Mexican spots in the US, Abuelo boasts about the quality of its food. All the dishes here are made from scratch, following the family recipes.

What to eat:

Abuelo’s menu is pretty diverse, so newcomers should first explore the house specialty section. I suggest choosing the steak and enchilada combo or the Ambassador for the 9-oz prime sirloin steak.

If you like composing your meal, head to the Pescado Parrilla (grilled fish) section. Here, you can choose the fish (sea bass or Tilapia) and the accompanying sauce (cream sherry sauce, tomato sauce, or Mexican garlic butter sauce).

Location: 8926 S Broadway Ave Suite 129, Tyler, TX 75703


Phone: (903) 581 2611

2. Mercado’s

Since its opening 30 years ago, Mercado has offered delicious Tex-Mex foods to the locals. Aside from its diverse dine-in menu, this place introduces a new curbside pick-up system to quicken the process.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Although it’s a Mexican dining place, Mercado uses the Mission style for its interior. This design focuses on simple horizontal and vertical lines. Yet, Mercado doesn’t look too plain. Instead, it’s super lively, with numerous colorful decorations.

I also love Mercado because of its special offerings every day. For example, children at 10 and under can have a free meal on Monday if their parents order entrees. Those wanting a drink can visit it on Thursday and Sunday to enjoy margaritas and drafts at lower costs.

What to eat:

Come to Mercado, and you’ll enjoy various Tex-Mex specialties. Choose the Tex-Mex combos or plates to try several foods at once. They all come with Mexican or cilantro lime rice and some side dishes: charro beans, sauteed vegetables, tortilla soups, etc.

Children at 10 or under can stuff their stomachs with various flavorful treats, like hamburgers, cheeseburgers, grilled cheese, etc. This menu also comes with extra French fries and ice cream.

Location: 2214 W SW Loop 323, Tyler, TX 75701


Phone: (903) 534 1754

3. Mama’s Restaurant

As its name implies, Mama’s will bring you various homey foods that taste like your mother’s cooking. It opens pretty early (7 AM on Sunday and 6 AM on other days), making it a perfect spot for breakfast in Tyler.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Same as its food, the atmosphere in Mama’s is pretty casual and comforting. Wooden furniture creates an old-school vibe. The outside walls are painted pink, so it’s easy to spot from afar.

What to eat:

As I’ve said above, breakfast is a huge spotlight in Mama’s. Its massive portions at reasonable prices are why it receives so much love. Aside from a fixed breakfast plate, choose the well-like omelet with different versions for kids and adults.

The dinner menu is also worth a try, including many mouth-watering dishes, like juicy T-bone steak, chicken fried steak, grilled Tilapia, etc.

Location: 2105 E 5th St, Tyler, TX 75701


Phone: (903) 526 7915

4. On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina

This restaurant got its name because it uses mesquite wood grown on the border between Texas and Mexico. This wood has been an indispensable part of its cooking for over 40 years.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

From the first spot in Dallas to more than 100 locations worldwide, there is no complaint about the service quality in On The Border. Many have loved it due to its vibrant ambiance, from the design to the live music.

Moreover, On The Order has various special days almost every day. Taco lovers should come here on Tuesday for the a la carte tacos at super low prices. Then, the next day, there is a discount on flavorful fajitas.

What to eat:

The biggest selection in On The Border is its fajitas. Aside from the classics with grilled chicken, steak, or shrimp, it has several unique specialties, including the ultimate fajitas containing grilled steak, chicken, shrimp, and braised pork.

Not only the food, but this spot is also famous for its delicious beverages, including ice-cold beer and hand-crafted cocktails. Among them, the rock margaritas receive the most attention.

Location: 4301 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 75703


Phone: (903) 266 1650

5. Don Juan Mexican Restaurant

With 3 branches in Tyler (I’ll mention the specialized seafood one later), the locals undoubtedly love Don Juan. This colorful establishment is an excellent stop for some classic Mexican bites.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

You will never get bored at any Don Juan’s branch. With flamboyant decorations and artificial flowers everywhere, its interior is pretty similar to a traditional Mexican street festival.

Moreover, the service is quick, as you don’t have to wait long for tables or food, even during rush hours.

What to eat:

Don Juan is well-loved for its street foods, like fajitas or tacos. Don Juan’s tacos are signature, with a choice between soft flour or corn tortillas. As for fajitas, you can opt for a single plate for 1 or a combo for 2 people.

And remember to try the unique Michelada mix here. With a spicy combination of tomato juice, peppers, and lemon, it will take you to the Mexican streets.


Location 1: 1313 E Erwin St, Tyler, TX 75702

Phone: (903) 526 2999

Location 2: 113 E Erwin St, Tyler, TX 75702

Phone: (903) 526 0702

6. Chuy’s

If you love Tex-Mex cuisine, you must have heard about Chuy’s. This Mexican restaurant chain started in Austin in 1982 and now has countless locations nationwide, thanks to its authentic foods.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

As both Chuy’s owners want to make each location as creative as possible, the design differs from one to another. So each time you visit a Chuy’s branch, you’ll always see something new.

But overall, all the branches share several similarities in decoration, such as the hand-carved wooden fish on the ceiling or the hanging hubcaps.

What to eat:

Do you know one of the reasons people go to Chuy’s is because of its signature sauces? They come in 3 spicy levels: mild, medium, and hot, so anyone can find a suitable flavor. And the most sought-after choice is the ranchero using fire-roasted tomatoes and bell peppers.

Besides savory dishes, Chuy’s tres leches (three milks cake) is also an iconic dessert, including homemade creme fraiche (French sour cream), caramel, and strawberries.

Location: 5935 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 75703


Phone: (903) 509 2489

7. The Jalapeno Tree

It has been over 25 years since the first location’s opening and about 15 years since the Tyler branch. And The Jalapeno Tree still works well in serving hearty Mexican foods to the locals and visitors.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

As a family-owned establishment, The Jalapeno Tree strives to bring an environment suitable for all ages. You can take your kids here for lunch and dinner almost any day throughout the year, even on New Year’s Day.

Since the food here is made to order, your food will always arrive piping hot. Not to mention, the chefs are willing to change rice and beans into squash, zucchini, or veggies to make your meal healthier.

What to eat:

The Jalapeno Tree is an ideal place for creative minds wanting to build their own meals. There are 4 options, letting you choose from 1 to 4 dishes from the list. Not to mention, each combo will get 2 side dishes of your choice.

Another highlight of Jalapeno Tree is the special bowls. Vegetable and garden bowls will satisfy all vegetarians since they’re full of veggies: zucchini, squash, mushrooms, tomatoes, etc.

Location: 420 W SW Loop 323, Tyler, TX 75701


Phone: (903) 509 0600

8. Papacita’s of Tyler

Papacita is one of the first Tex-Mex dining spots in town. It all began with Ted Hudson purchasing it in 1986. Since then, he and his family have developed it into an excellent stop for anyone who wants to try classic Mexican dishes.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Like other Mexican restaurants, Papacita has a vibrant setting with several large, colorful pictures on the walls. The rustic wooden furniture creates a nice contrasting space for the customers to enjoy the house-made dishes full of love.

What to eat:

Fajitas take the biggest spotlight among all the favorites. There are 3 versions with steak, chicken, or shrimp; all are served hot on a metal plate. And before eating fajitas, order the chile con queso as the appetizer to enjoy the creamy blend of melted cheese.

Aside from the house margarita, Papacita offers multiple soft drinks for all ages: tea, diet coke, root beer, lemonade, etc. Or go for the draft beer, domestic or premium, to wash down your food.

Location: 6704 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 75703


Phone: (903) 581 7433

9. Ruby’s Mexican Restaurant

Inspired by her grandmother’s cooking, Ruby Abarca decided to open this place to share that experience with others. From the first location, it only takes about 3 years for her to open the third one.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

To compensate for the tight space inside, Ruby has a spacious patio covered with umbrellas so the customers can eat without worrying about wind or rain. Feel free to serve yourself some soft drinks from the vending machine beside the cash register.

What to eat:

Come here from 7 AM to 11 AM to grab some tacos or burritos for breakfast. Their fillings are all familiar morning ingredients, such as scrambled eggs, ham, sausages, or cheese.

As for lunch and dinner, grab the customers’ favorite doblados de birria (folded tortillas with your chosen meat) and other accompaniments like cocktail shrimp or nachos for a satisfying meal.


Location 1: 2021 E Gentry Pkwy, Tyler, TX 75702

Phone: (903) 617 6816

Location 2: 813 Lindsey Lane, Tyler, TX 75701

Phone: (903) 630 2071

Location 3: 3502 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 75701

Phone: (903) 630 2698

10. Torchy’s Tacos

Torchy started as one man’s dream of building a taco joint. From a food trailer initially, this food chain now has more than 90 locations without decreasing the food’s standard.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Like Chuy’s, each Torchy branch has a distinctive design to create surprises for regular customers. However, this place’s main focus is always the food. All the ingredients, even the jalapeno, are carefully sourced to ensure the highest quality.

What to eat:

With tacos as the central theme, Torchy brings forth new tacos every month. Some can be vegetarians, while others are dairy-free. Make sure to check the website for these monthly specialties.

This place also has multiple regular tacos with unique names. The Trailer Park taco reminds customers of the store’s origin, using fried chicken, green chiles, and lettuce. People concerned about health will love the fried avocado version using refried pinto beans.

Location: 426 E SE Loop 323, Tyler, TX 75701


Phone: (903) 581 3716

11. Javi’s

Do you want premium margaritas and fajitas for the next meal? Look no further than Javis! It’ll satisfy you with multiple award-winning dishes. You can even book it for various private events, like weddings, business meals, etc.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Nothing beats eating in an open space, right? That’s why Javis has placed several desks right on the waterside. There is even a small dome for people in need of private space. This dog-friendly patio is spacious enough for even medium-sized pets.

What to eat:

Coming here, you must try Javi’s famous fajitas. Besides the handmade tortillas, aged cheddar, and sauteed vegetables, you’ll get to choose your favorite fillings, from carne asada to Peruvian shrimp, chipotle ribs, or mesquite chicken.

Then, quench your thirst with the famous margarita cocktails here. The frozen “Javi’s Taxi” is one of the most well-loved.

Location: 7212 Old Jacksonville Hwy, Tyler, TX 75703


Phone: (903) 504 5075

12. Mariscos DJs – Don Juan Seafood

This Mariscos DJs is the third location of the Don Juan series above. However, unlike its 2 brothers, this location revolves around seafood dishes freshly made every day.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Mariscos follow the same Don Juan’s design core: Fun and colorful. Besides the usual decorative flowers, it even covers some tables with bottle caps or fills one wall with monochrome music posters. These details make your evening more memorable.

What to eat:

Mariscos takes great pride in its fresh seafood, so the Coctele (cocktail) section is a must-try. Feel free to choose among 3 sizes: small, large, or super large. The usual combo is shrimp and octopus.

Your children can also enjoy the seafood here with the shrimp or fish basket in the exclusive kid’s menu. Each dish comes with a 12-oz drink, rice, and a side dish (fries or beans).

Location: 1201 E Erwin St, Tyler, TX 75702


Phone: (903) 533 1220

13. El Mejicano Mexican Restaurant

El Mejicano is an ideal place for hearty eaters with its all-you-can-eat Mexican buffet. Thanks to that, its popularity has kept rising for over 20 years of opening.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

El Mejicano provides buffets for both lunch and dinner. The latter is slightly more expensive than the former, but they’re both reasonably priced. The food on line is diverse and kept hot just like they’re freshly cooked.

Moreover, if you come here on your birthday, you’ll get a 50% discount on your meal.

What to eat:

Popular dishes like burrito yaya (flour tortilla with chile con queso) and tostadas tinga (chicken tinga) are must-eat. Besides, try other El Mejicano specialties: Mexican-style pork, tacos with fried chicken, steamed beef cheek, etc.

Then, end your meal with authentic Mexican tres leches (milk cake) or sopapillas (deep-fried pastry). There are also several pudding and gelatin treats for people wanting something smoother.

Location: 678 W SW Loop 323, Tyler, TX 75701


Phone: (903) 939 2818

14. Fuzzy’s Taco Shop

If you’re looking for some taco bites at night, visit Fuzzy immediately! This place opens until 10 PM or 12 AM, making it a great choice to enjoy the nightlife in Tyler.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

In Fuzzy, nothing is too loud. The eclectic music plays nonstop, creating a lively atmosphere. Its patios are even open to dogs, so bring your 4-legged friends here. There is even a drink machine for the customers to grab their favorite soda.

What to eat:

Baja tacos are Fuzzy’s signature dishes. The regular selection contains usual dishes with grilled mahi, carnitas, shredded brisket, or chicken. This place also has another premium category, including more unique options, like saucy brisket poblano.

People also come to Fuzzy for its tasty appetizer: chips & queso. Choose to get it served with chorizo or ground beef.

Location: 1871 Troup Hwy, Tyler, TX 75701


Phone: (903) 597 3899

15. Posados Cafe

While its name is “cafe”, Posados is more than a decent restaurant for Mexican cuisine. Besides tasty dishes, you’ll get various special deals and discounts when coming here.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Posados is not a big chain; it only has 6 branches in Texas and another 2 in Los Angeles. However, its food doesn’t lose to any big name above.

Moreover, the reward system in this restaurant will make you return for more since with every dollar you spend, you’ll receive 1 point. And when you reach 50 points, Posados will award you a discount.

What to eat:

The menu concept in Posados is similar to Mercado’s, so there are Tex-Mex plates and combos for customers to try various dishes.

And if you like Mexican street food, this spot dedicates a whole category for street tacos with various meat choices: brisket, chicken, shrimp, white fish, etc.


Location 1: 2500 E 5th St, Tyler, TX 75701

Phone: (903) 597 2573

Location 2: 3040 W Gentry Pkwy, Tyler, TX 75702

Phone: (903) 405 3378

16. Taqueria El Lugar

With 3 locations in Tyler, you can easily access Taqueria anytime you’re hungry. This place guarantees that its foods are always freshly made without any preservatives.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

The Taqueria’s interior is simple, so the customers can easily focus on their food. On the walls are various pictures reflecting Tyler’s nature and history. The ceiling fans help the dining room be less stuffy when crowded.

What to eat:

Taqueria’s most popular dishes are mainly quesadillas. Its super flour version has white melted cheese with your chosen protein (beef, ham, or chicken).

If you don’t like flour tortillas, choose quesadilla con carne for the corn tortillas. And the taco con repollo (taco with cabbage) is a flawless dish for taco lovers.


Location 1: 1726 E Gentry Pkwy, Tyler, TX 75702

Phone: (903) 597 4717

Location 2: 2121 E 5th St, Tyler, TX 75701

Phone: (903) 526 6118

Location 3: 111 W Ferguson St, Tyler, TX 75702

Phone: (903) 500 9054

17. Freebirds World Burrito

Mexican cuisine is not only about tacos and fajitas; burritos are also an indispensable part. And regarding this food, you have to visit Freebirds to try its self-acclaimed best burritos in monster sizes.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

The best thing about Freebirds is it caters to all dietary requirements. From low-carb to keto, paleo, and vegan, you can invite any friend to this eatery for a satisfying meal. That explains why it has kept its first place in burritos for more than 30 years.

What to eat:

You can upgrade almost any option on Freebirds’ menu, from burritos to bowls and salads, to the monster size, which means 50% more. Furthermore, you’ll get to choose your favorite protein among these choices: steak, chicken, roasted pork, vegan chorizo, etc.

What’s better? Besides choosing fillings, customers can even build their own burritos from scratch by selecting tortillas, rice, beans, cheese, and even the accompaniment veggies.

Location: 5105 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 75703


Phone: (903) 939 0996

18. La Plazita

Eating in a relaxing atmosphere makes food tastier. That’s why La Plazita earns a spot on this list. Although it only serves regular Mexican dishes like tostadas, tacos, or quesadillas, the flavor is top-notch.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

La Plazita has a pretty low-key outdoor appearance, thus easy to overlook. However, the interior is much more lively and colorful. The walls are painted green and red, making a nice contrast. The staff even hang several Mexican fiesta flags for a more authentic experience.

What to eat:

La Plazita has separate menus for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. So even regular guests won’t feel bored.

As it opens at 7:00 – 7:30 AM, many love coming here for breakfast. Besides standard options like pancakes or French toast, you can get the Mexican-style carne asada portion.

Location: 11980 State Hwy 64, Tyler, TX 75704


Phone: (903) 526 4193

19. Lindo Mexico Restaurant

Lindo has everything you look for in an ideal restaurant: exceptional food, fast service, and budget-friendly price. You’ll love it as much as I do.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

You can easily spot Lindo from afar thanks to its signboard. The orange walls make the interior look much cozier, like a traditional eatery. The TV screen in one corner allows you to watch the news or sports games while eating.

What to eat:

Come between 11 AM and 2 PM, Monday to Friday, to enjoy Lindo’s lunch specials. They include tacos, enchiladas, fajitas, etc., with different protein options (ground beef or chicken). You’ll also get an extra chile con queso when paying a certain amount.

As for dinner, try the burrito plates that all come with rice and beans. The one catching my eye is the unique Swiss-style burrito using gravy and cheese.

Location: 2410 E Gentry Pkwy, Tyler, TX 75708

Website: Unavailable

Phone: (903) 526 5464

20. Margarita’s Mexican Restaurant

This place’s name shows its great pride in its margaritas. Aside from this famous drink, other authentic Mexican dishes here are also irresistible and can satisfy even the pickiest eater.

Why you should come to this restaurant:

Red is the main color of the Margarita’s. It appears in both the outdoor and indoor look. Combined with various vibrant fiesta flags and decorations, this place looks like a perfect set-up for all parties.

What to eat:

Fajitas are among the popular savory dishes in Margarita’s. It offers customers different protein choices, such as chicken, beef, shrimp, or quail. If you come with another friend, there is even a fajita combo for two people so you can share with each other.

Your children also have their exclusive plates with chicken strips, mini corn dogs, tamales, or quesadillas at a fixed price. Margarita’s even provides them with free drinks.

Location: 1327 E Front St, Tyler, TX 75702


Phone: (903) 593 5954

Celebrate The Mexican Spirits With These Restaurants

Tyler is a fun place to start your journey of discovering Mexican cuisine thoroughly. While it’s not a big name like other cities, the culinary scene here will never disappoint you. The specialties in each restaurant will widen your view of Mexican and Tex-Mex foods.

After reading this article, please share it with your family and friends for the next Mexican feast. And if you have other recommendations, state them in the comment section so I can broaden my list even more.

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Written by William

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