Best Cheap Mexican Food (2002)

El Norteño

Even when we have no money, we still can eat like royalty at El Norteño. The most expensive thing on the menu at this casual, counter-service shop is a Mexican pizza, and for $6.75, it's huge, loaded with ground beef, beans, guacamole, sour cream, tomatoes, jalapeños and onions. Most everything else comes in at less than $5, with flavors and portions worth twice the price.

Who can beat a burro grande, just $4 for a hefty handful of red or green chile, sour cream or guacamole, cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion plus a 44-ounce drink? Actually, El Norteño beats itself, with a staggering display of daily specials. Breakfast is just $1.99 (huevos rancheros, beans and tortillas on Monday), lunch is just $2.99 (like a red or green burro enchilada-style, beans, salad and drink), and dinner is just $3.50 (perhaps beef chimichanga with beans and rice).

That's one hot tamale, for just a tiny little bit of cold cash.


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >