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6 top Tex-Mex take-out restaurants in Texas

Molina's Cantina in Houston Molina's Cantina in Houston | Photo by Jenn Duncan

Tex-Mex is the ultimate comfort food—especially during the pandemic.

While dine-in regulations vary from county to county, many fine purveyors of enchiladas and tacos are offering easy take-away and delivery services. To help you turn any meal into a fiesta, many restaurants also offer margarita kits or cocktails to go. Here’s a look at delicious Tex-Mex options around the state, all ready for your enjoyment in the comfort of home.

1. La Gloria

Two San Antonio locations: 100 E. Grayson Street (the Pearl, 210-267-9040) and 21819 I-10 (Dominion, 210-265-3315) 

chefjohnnyhernandez.com

La Gloria in San Antonio

La Gloria in San Antonio | Photo by Jonathan Alonzo

Since opening La Gloria a decade ago in the Pearl District, and more recently a second outpost in the Dominion neighborhood, chef Johnny Hernandez’s star continues to shine bright. Applying his classical training to the foods of his family’s Mexican roots, he creates street-taco favorites such as bistec (grilled beef with salsa árbol) and al pastor (marinated pork with roasted pineapple). His enchiladas verdes feature a tomatillo sauce topped with Mexican crema and queso fresco. Those, along with ceviche Veracruzano, beef skirt steak in pasilla chile sauce, and Mexican hamburgers, are offered for carry-out at the Pearl location. Eight H-E-B stores in the city offer family-style take-home taco kits that include sides of roasted tomatillo salsa, Mexican rice, tostada chips, and corn tortillas.

 

2. Molina’s Cantina

Two Houston locations: 3801 Bellaire Boulevard (713-432-1626) and 7901 Westheimer Road (713-782-0861)

molinascantina.com

Molina's Cantina in Houston

Molina's Cantina in Houston | Photo by Jenn Duncan

Molina’s Cantina has been Houston’s go-to for authentic Tex-Mex since 1941. Now run by the founding family’s third generation, Molina’s responded ably to customer demand at the onset of COVID-19 for take-home dishes, including many made from the restaurant’s original recipes. Devotees are delighted to find signature dishes for takeout such as Enchiladas de Tejas (cheese enchiladas with chili con carne), Jose’s Dip (creamy queso with spicy taco meat), and Berly’s Burrito (flour tortilla packed with beef or chicken fajitas, covered with chili and topped with melted cheese). Home Fiesta Kits include enchiladas, fajitas, tacos, or tamales—enough food to feed four to six people. Ask about adding beer, wine, or frozen margaritas, too; choose curbside or delivery service when ordering online.

 

3. Primo’s MX Kitchen and Lounge

Two Dallas locations: 3309 McKinney Avenue (Uptown, 214-935-5111) and 1914 Commerce Street (Downtown, 469-320-8996)

primosuptown.com

Primo's MX Kitchen and Lounge in Dallas

Primo's MX Kitchen and Lounge in Dallas | Photo courtesy Primo's MX Kitchen and Lounge

After shuttering for a few years, Big D’s longtime favorite for fancier-than-most Tex-Mex returned to its original Uptown location just before the pandemic struck. Hungry locals can order fajitas, enchiladas, tacos, and nachos à la carte or as family-style meals. Feed a crowd with enchiladas (choose from roja, verde, con carne, or champiñones); tacos and nachos (pick beef asada, chicken, grilled fish, or Impossible Meat); and queso, guacamole, beans, and salsa by the quart. Primo’s famous margaritas can be made at home with a kit that includes Cazadores tequila, as well as a spicy house mix or a house on-the-rocks mix. Cue up some good Tejano music and indulge.

 

4. Eat Fajitas

Fort Worth (delivery only)

817-850-9996; eatfajitas.com

Eat Fajitas in Fort Worth

Eat Fajitas in Fort Worth | Photo by Jeremy Enlow

Drawing upon his Tex-Mex legacy, Lanny P. Lancarte III dreamed up a fajitas-delivery concept in 2018 and finally launched Eat Fajitas out of his popular Righteous Foods café kitchen during COVID-19. The great-grandson of renowned Tex-Mex pioneer Joe T. Garcia, Lancarte cooks up beef sirloin fajitas that melt in your mouth, and delicious chicken and veggie fajitas, too. All meals include hot flour tortillas and all the sides. Eat Fajitas prepares your meal within 20 minutes of your order and then sends it on its way. Margaritas are also available to go.

5. Tia Juanita’s Fish Camp

5555 Calder Avenue, Beaumont

409-434-4532; tinyurl.com/tia-juanitas

Tia Juanita's Fish Camp in Beaumont

Tia Juanita's Fish Camp in Beaumont | Photo by Stephanie Alexander

Deep in the southeastern-most corner of Texas, you can find a perfect blend of Tex-Mex and Cajun cuisines. And no restaurant does such fusion better than Tia Juanita’s, a bar and grill boasting a perpetual festival flavored with the spirit of Mardi Gras. To find proof, check out the boudin infused with jalapeño or the gumbo that’s served with potato salad or a half po’boy. Try the queso—served by the pint—with scratch-made tortillas and beef and chicken fajitas. Grilled fish and shrimp tacos count among favorites, and the boudin quesadillas shouldn’t be missed. They’re among dishes now served to go and delivered curbside or at home. Ask about margaritas for take-away as well; choose from among such varieties as orange crush, sangrita, and swirl.

 

6. Fresa’s

Two Austin locations: 915 North Lamar Boulevard (512-428-5077) and 1703 S. First Street (512-992-2946)

fresaschicken.com

Fresa's in Austin

Fresa's in Austin | Photo courtesy Fresa's

Fresa’s is known for delicious wood-grilled meats and seafood with flavors from Mexico, but its signature is its chicken—whole, half, or quarter-bird—laced with achiote and citrus. Other favorites include the wood-grilled chimichurri skirt steak and aji-glazed prawns. The meal is complete with sides of charro beans, Mexican rice, grilled onion, marinated jalapeños, tender corn tortillas, and assorted salsas. La Gringa Quesadillas—filled with agave-lime chicken, grilled onion, pepper strips, and jack cheese, with avocado verde salsa and crema on the side—get high marks from diners (only available at the South First Street location). For additional sides, check out the kale Caesar salad and grilled beets with chimichurri sauce, Cotija cheese, crispy pepitas, and saffron chile aioli. All these are now offered as curbside take-away options, as are to-go margaritas and the house margarita mix. 

 

AAA Travel Alert: Many travel destinations have implemented COVID-19–related restrictions. Before making travel plans, check to see if hotels, attractions, cruise lines, tour operators, restaurants, and local authorities have issued health and safety-related restrictions or entry requirements. The local tourism board is a good resource for updated information.

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