There is no shortage of places to eat lunch in Tempe for under $10, but one of our favorites is El Pollo Supremo. Tucked away in the ultra hip strip mall on University and Ash and easily overlooked while traversing on your fixed gear from Buffalo Exchange to Cartel Coffee, lies this tiny gem and its amazing bright red chicken.
Don't bother bringing your vegetarian friends here, El Pollo Surpremo offers a very limited menu. Chicken or beef, those are your options. For us, anyway, the mesquite grilled meat is so good it's all they need.
We decided to splurge and got the combo plate, which includes both chicken and beef. Each plate comes with beans, pickled onions, homemade salsa and your choice of flour or corn tortillas. The combo plate is under $7, throw in a large drink and you have lunch for $9.50.
The more budget friendly route is the quarter chicken, which costs under $4 and still comes with all the good stuff.
Always fresh off the grill, the tri-tip sirloin is tender and flavorful. But it's the chicken that really keeps us coming back. Crispy on the outside and insanely delicious on the inside. The bright red color might be off putting at first, take your first bite, you'll be hooked. It's a little on the greasy side but that's what makes it so good. Be sure to pile on the pickled onions and the fresh salsa for the full experience.
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El Pollo Supremo is a family run business that has been around for as long as we can remember. The woman at the counter is always friendly and we're pretty sure it's just one dude that mans the grill all day long. The atmosphere is nothing special. It's tiny and difficult to get a table during lunch time so be prepared to get your food to go. We happened to be there on a Sunday afternoon and it was packed. Be prepared and hit up an ATM first, since they only take cash.