Budget Beat

La Cocina Economica: Lunch $10 and under

On 16th Street, between Jefferson and Thomas roads, there is not one, not two, but count them -- at least 15 spots to get Mexican food. 

But for the past couple years our favorite tried and true eatery on this strip has been La Cocina Economica.

The bright yellow building south of McDowell on 16th Street normally has a packed parking lot during the weekday lunch hours but don't let that stop you. It's your typical cheap and fast Mexican food, but these ladies cook up some of the best.

The carne asada burrito is one of the best we have ever had. A handmade tortilla loaded with juicy grilled steak and fresh guacamole can't be beat. The shrimp tacos are equally good with fresh tomatoes, cabbage and sauce. If they haven't run out the day you go, try a ceviche tostada. They're only a buck.


One of the best things about this place is the hot sauce selection. Plus they have their own impressive red and green sauces at the salsa bar. And of course the true sign of any good Mexican food restaurant: they have Coke in the bottle.

This place is tasty and if you play your cards right you could actually feed two people for under $10, so next time you're in the neighborhood, skip the place across the street and go to La Cocina.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Shannon Armour
Contact: Shannon Armour