The 9 Best Tacos in Chicago, Ranked
Margaritas sold separately
What’s better than crunching on a taco on a balmy night with a margarita in hand? That’s a trick question. Nothing is better than taco night. To help you make the most of this season, we chowed through dozens of tacos to find the best ones in Chicago. Read on for the results of our (crazy delicious) research.
9. Seoul Taco’s Seoul Tacos
This River North newcomer already has serious street cred. That’s because its blend of Mexican and Korean flavors is tough to beat--especially when you add the creamy, spicy and peppery “Seoul sauce” to the mix.
738 N. Clark St.; 312-265-1607 or seoultaco.com
8. Big & Little’s Banh Mi Tacos
Fried whitefish, cucumbers, carrots, pickled jalapeños and… actually, we don’t have time to list all the tangy, crunchy ingredients. You should be on your way to Big & Little’s--like right now.
860 N. Orleans St.; 312-943-0000 or bigandlittleschicago.com
7. L’Patron’s Carne Asada Tacos
Hipsters swear by this spot and they’re very serious about its perfectly seasoned steak. You can try the taco straight up with some chopped onions or throw on some creamy Chihuahua cheese.
2815 W. Diversey Ave.; 773-252-6335
6. Buzz Bait Taqueria’s Panko-Crusted Avocado Taco
Not only is this the perfect place to chow down before a Second City show, but it’s got some of the best tacos in town. If you’re on the prowl for something vegetarian, you can’t beat avocado smothered in mango salsa and cheese.
1529 N. Wells St.; 312-664-2899 or buzzbaitchicago.com
5. Tallboy’s Cowboy 12-HR Smoked Brisket Taco
We’re committed to tacos--but not enough to do anything for 12 hours. Thank goodness this unassuming spot does it for us, then slathers that smoky meat in salsa and onions.
325 W. Huron St.; 312-488-4917 or tallboytaco.com
4. Maxwell Street Market’s Rudi’s Tacos
Find the food vendor at the market on Sundays and prepare to wait in line. Trust us: Once you bite into the steak and mushroom tacos, you’ll want to hop in line to order one all over again.
800 S. Desplaines St.; 312-745-4676 or cityofchicago.org
3. Cruz Blanca Cerveceria’s Roasted Garlic Chicken Breast Taco Plate
Rick Bayless’s newest spot brews its own beers, so obviously you’ll need a glass of something sudsy--and a taco to go alongside it. The on-site taqueria serves stack of fresh tortillas with meat, wood-grilled onions and peppers, avocado salsa and cucumbers.
900 W. Randolph St.; 312-733-1975 or cruzblanca.com
2. Antique Taco’s Sweet & Spicy Chicken Tacos
When cinnamon, honey yogurt, pink onion and mint come together in a chicken taco, the results are magically delicious. Add in the fact that this is the most adorable taco shop in town (mismatched plates; hand-tied bouquets; come on) and yeah. We’ll be here once a week.
1360 N. Milwaukee Ave.; 773-687-8697 or antiquetaco.com
1. Big Star’s Taco de Panza
You probably guessed where this No. 1 ranking was headed: straight to the patio at Big Star. Call us predictable or join us in marveling over the fact that the place with the best jukebox tunes, patio and braised-pork-belly tacos in the world is all ours. How lucky are we to live here?
1531 N. Damen Ave.; 773-235-4039 or bigstarchicago.com