You don't need to be the target of a petition calling for your exile from the state of Texas because of taco-related blasphemy to understand that South Texas takes breakfast tacos pretty damn seriously—hell, super damn seriously indeed.
And while the rest of Texas would probably rather move to Brooklyn than admit it, Austin just so happens to quite possibly be the breakfast taco capital of the Lone Star State. Whether you're looking to fulfill your migas craving, eat a taco that's as large as your face, or figure out what in the hell a "puffy" taco actually is, Austin is city for you.
Luckily for you, we've oh-so-heroically stuck our hand into the viperous pit of controversy that is the South Texas breakfast taco scene and put together a list of the best places to grab a breakfast taco in the city of Austin. For more tips on where to go and what to eat while in the Lone Star State, check out the complete MUNCHIES Guide to Austin.
La Mexicana Bakery: It seems wrong to deprive the public of breakfast tacos past a certain hour, which is why La Mexicana is exceptional—they serve them 24 hours a day. They make their flour tortillas fresh every day and start their tacos $1.30 a pop, making this spot the Holy Grail for breakfast tacos in Austin. It's also a good idea to take home some of their Mexican baked goods, and their sugar skulls and skeletons during Dia De Los Muertos are pretty awesome.
Donut Taco Palace I & II: Donuts and Tacos live in harmony at Donut Taco Palace I & II. Order a breakfast taco and an El Toro, which is a glazed donut in the shape of a hand giving a peace sign, a thumbs up, a hang ten, or whatever the bakers decided to make that day.
Veracruz All Natural Food Truck: Veracruz has perfected the ultimate Tex-Mex breakfast taco: The Migas Taco, filled with eggs that are scrambled with tortilla chips. Sisters Reyna and Maritza opened their first truck in 2008, and have since expanded to a South Austin location at Radio Coffee and a brick-and-mortar in Round Rock. Be prepared for a long wait on weekends, as they make each taco fresh—no pre-mixed egg action here. But once your number gets called, you add on some of their house-made hot sauce, and you take that first bite, you'll be back in line, ordering another round before you know it.
El Tacorrido: El Tacorrido's drive thru makes it the ideal spot for breakfast tacos when you just can't get out of your pajamas. Try building your own combo (go for the nopales) and order an El Equinox, an iced horchata with a shot of espresso. If you can't wait until you get back to your place to eat it, we don't blame you.
Tacodeli: Tacodeli serves up breakfast tacos from 7-11 AM on weekdays and all day on the weekends. Order favorites like The Otto (refried black beans, bacon, avocado, and Monterey Jack cheese) or the larger Migas Royale Plate, which comes with migas, queso, avocado, and pico de gallo, alongside smashed potatoes and refried black beans. Their Spyglass location sits in front of the Austin Greenbelt, making it one of the more pleasant spots to eat tacos in the city.
Polvos: What sets the breakfast tacos at Polvos apart from the others is that they make their tortillas fresh on site. At $2 a pop, it's also one of the better deals in town. Beware of their house margarita—it packs a punch.
Mi Madre's Restaurant: Mi Madre's Restaurant is a charming spot on the east side with a patio made for enjoying their famous breakfast tacos on. The options are numbered #0 through #18, and we suggest #9, which features house-made machacado (shredded dry beef that's scrambled with eggs) and pico.
Joe's Bakery: Joe's has been serving up proper Tex-Mex breakfasts since 1962. Order any of their breakfast tacos, a cup of coffee, and some conchas (or any of their traditional Mexican pastries), and partake in a true Austin tradition.
El Primo Truck: Look for the trailer with an avocado painted on the side and a bright blue and orange sign that says "EL PRIMO." Then, you'll immediately see a crowd of people around it enjoying the egg and chorizo tacos and breakfast burritos. It's right outside of Once Over coffee, making the corner a great two-for-one breakfast destination.
El Chilito: El Chilito started out as the little sister taco stand to El Chile restaurant. Now, it's springing up in a variety of locations across the city—and with good reason. The Charlie's Special (eggs, chorizo, potato, tomato, onion, and serrano) has become a classic and is especially delicious on a deep-fried "puffy" taco shell.
Juan in a Million: Everyone's here for the Don Juan El Taco Grande, the king of all breakfast tacos; it is the size of most grown adults faces, and finishing it is a rite of passage (seriously, each taco weighs around one pound). They have traditionally-sized breakfast tacos as well, but everyone should try the Grande at some point in their life.
Tamale House East: Tamale House East is beloved for many reasons, but the most obvious one is in the name. Order a breakfast taco and a chicken tomatillo tamale, and eat them out on the patio.
Sazón: Sazón may look a bit ramshackle from the outside, but the South Austin Tex-Mex restaurant has been a breakfast taco and chilaquiles touchstone for years. If you want to experience queso's full potential, start with an order of choriqueso, which is melty white cheese mixed with sautéed chorizo and pico de gallo, and served with warm tortillas.
Curra's Grill: A colorful south Austin breakfast spot. Their tacos pair especially well with Oaxacan coffee (a dark roast with a hint of vanilla) or one of their signature avocado margaritas.
For our complete list, check out the rest of our picks for Austin in the MUNCHIES Guide to Austin.