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Here’s Where to Find the Best Fish Tacos in Mexico’s Baja Peninsula

Road tripping across Mexico’s Baja Peninsula in search of one of the world's most perfect foods--the fish taco.

If you’ve ever visited Mexico’s Baja peninsula, you’ve likely eaten a fish taco, the signature dish of the area. But from Tecate in the north to Cabo San Lucas in the south, there are several different takes on the fish taco—all of them delicious.

No matter where you are in Baja, a fish taco is likely on every menu. They’re more prevalent than hot dogs in Chicago or bagels in New York City. And there are a few theories on the true origin.

Many say that the fish taco is linked to Japanese tempura, from when Japanese fishers came to Mexico in the 1950s and ’60s. Locals adopted the style of flash-frying fish and added a tortilla. Another theory is that chefs fried fish and made tacos because they were buying fish from the black market in Ensenada’s port, where fish were being caught illegally. Or that they generally wanted to disguise the fish they were serving because it wasn’t the finest fish available, so they’d fry it in a light batter.

Regardless of exactly how it evolved, the fish taco caught on. And over the years it became more and more popular. Today, it remains true comfort food in Baja.

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After traveling throughout Baja Sur, we’ve come up with a list of must-eat fish tacos. Here are our favorites.

Birote’s Everybody, Mulegé, Baja California Sur

You learn pretty quickly in Baja, that some of the best food is simple, cheap, and sometimes not even in a restaurant. This food truck has gained a reputation as one of the best fish tacos in all of Baja. Luis runs the stand with his wife, Heather. And the key to their delicious snacks is that everything is absolutely fresh. A nice, light batter, flash-fried, and served with just-made salsa. They also have incredible ceviche, and clams if they’ve gone diving.

Mulegé is an oasis and mission town at the northern end of the Bahia Concepción. Because of the convergence of cold water from the north, and warm water from the south, a huge variety of fish are present in the waters. Lucky for us!

El Zopilote Brewing Company in Loreto.Micah Ling

El Zopilote Brewing Company and Restaurant, Loreto, Baja California Sur

There’s nothing wrong with a fish taco paired with a Pacifico in a bottle, but at El Zopilote, a local brewery, the tacos taste even better matched with one of the featured brews. Order three fish tacos and they arrive on a cutting board with purple cabbage and fresh limes. Add your own salsa and a dollop of guacamole. The outdoor seating area overlooks the old town centro and the historic Mission Loreto. The Misión de Nuestra Señora de Loreto Conchó (Mission Loreto) was founded on October 25, 1697, and ran until 1829. Today the old square is bustling with food, vendors, music, and plenty of visitors from around the world.

Beans & Rice Tako Bar in Los Barriles.Micah Ling

Beans & Rice Tako Bar, Los Barriles, Baja California Sur

The first time a simple tortilla (you often get the choice of flour or corn, and we prefer corn) with a piece of fried fish is put in front of you, it might seem stark. But that’s the best-case scenario. It means there’s a toppings bar where you get to create your own masterpiece. And at Beans & Rice Tako Bar, the salsa bar is epic. Everything from hot (hot, hot) habanero sauce to guacamole and cabbage salad. The fish doesn’t necessarily need to be dressed up, but with so many fresh add-ons, it only makes the star of the show better.

Los Barriles attracts people seeking all kinds of adventures, from mountain biking to kite surfing. And the made-at-your-table guacamole, paired with a few tacos, is the best way to recover.

Barracuda Cantina in Cerritos.Micah Ling

Barracuda Cantina, Cerritos, Baja California Sur

Something about spending the day near, or in, the ocean, makes a fish taco and a cold drink seem like the only possible end to the day. Barracuda is situated just a block from the beach in Cerritos–a famous area to surf both for those learning how and seasoned pros. The waves are big, but the water is relatively shallow and easy to access.

The fish taco at Barracuda comes with their signature avocado sauce, a simple slaw, and limes. You can choose between grilled or beer-battered, and we recommend the latter. The batter is perfectly crispy and brings out the taste of the fish. They also serve a cocktail called the “Green Flash” (gin, basil, St. Germain), which commemorates the flash of green light that can sometimes be seen as the sunset dips below the horizon, just a stone’s throw from the cantina.


Fish Tacos Santo Chilote, Todos Santos, Baja California Sur

Everything at Santo Chilote is simple and delicious. That’s true of so many places in Baja, but especially here. A one-sided laminated menu has just a handful of items and a few bottled beers. A town fountain is right next to the outdoor seating area, which attracts both locals and out of towners. Perfect for people-watching as you wait for your food. This place wins for best salsa bar. It’s huge! An incredible (and spicy) mango sauce, fresh pico de gallo, and a cucumber salad.

Another must-order here is a coconut encrusted, fried avocado taco–wildly good. A little sweet with hints of macaroon–and warm and delicious. You don’t need to add anything to this one, but maybe a drizzle of that spicy mango.

After sampling several tacos throughout Baja, our advice is to seek out the smaller places with short menus. You can’t go wrong at the food trucks and small stands near the ocean. Add-your-own toppings are always fun, and a great reminder that a perk of being in Mexico is access to endless fresh produce. Order your taco doradito style and you’ll get a warmed, golden tortilla with a little crunch. Con copia will get you double tortillas. Many of the residents in small towns throughout Baja make a living on farming and fishing. Fish tacos are a great way to support their efforts. Also, be sure to stop at the local farm stands and locally-owned shops.

Birotes April 1, 2022

Thanks for the recommendation of our little food trailer Birotes Everybody!! What an great feeling knowing people are talking about our little business here in Mulege!! Blessings Heather and Luis