Mexican Street Tacos: A Delicious History

The Origins and Deliciousness of Street Tacos

Have you ever tried authentic Mexican street tacos? When you think of Mexican food, you may tend to think of tacos as the most common type of Mexican cuisine. You can find tacos everywhere. Popular fast-food chains, on restaurant menus, social media posts, costumes, and more. Taco Tuesday is a common night in households and restaurants where tacos are the main things on the menu. The taco is a Mexican food staple here in the United States. Billions of Americans consume tacos every year. According to Fine Dining Lovers, people in the U.S. consumed 4.5 billion tacos in 2012 alone.

So, where did tacos come from? How has it become such a popular Mexican food staple? El Mariachi is going to explore the delicious history of tacos, street tacos, and more. This month, learn a little about the history of tacos, then come visit us for a delicious selection of street tacos and authentic Mexican food.


The Origins of the Ever-Tasty Street Taco

No one actually knows where or how the taco came to be. The word “taco” originates from 18th century silver mines in Mexico to refer to dynamite. They would wrap dynamite tightly in paper, which is similar to how we wrap ingredients in a tortilla.

You might be asking, “well, how did tacos make it to the United States?” Evidence suggests that tacos were first brought to the States by an influx of Mexican immigrants in the 19th century. These immigrants would then sell street tacos on the streets of Los Angeles and surrounding areas. Mexican immigrants began to see success in America, and so did their tacos. Gradually, street tacos have made their way from food trucks to now on the menus of gourmet restaurants.


What are Street Tacos?

We call traditional Mexican tacos street tacos. These street tacos come in a wide variety of meats. Taco trucks serve street tacos at festivals, parties, and more. However, more restaurants like El Mariachi are adding the delicious varieties to their menus. Unlike many versions of tacos in America, ground beef is not a popular meat option for street tacos. Corn tortillas are also more common with street tacos than flour tortillas.


Common Types of Street Taco Filling

Barbacoa: Barbacoa is a preparation of meat (typically sheep, goat, or beef) that is steam cooked in an underground oven until very tender and succulent. While cooking, you can season barbacoa with dried chilies and spices. Barbacoa pork is a delicious taco filling.

Carnitas: Pork is the primarily ingredient in carnitas tacos. When making carnitas, you can season the pork using herbs, orange juice, and salt. Toppings that go well with carnitas are onions, jalapenos, shredded cabbage, cilantro, and more.

Al Pastor: Al Pastor is sometimes a mixture of pork and beef, but typically only beef. You can season Al Pastor with axiote and red peppers. It is then put on a metal stick that slowly rotates so that the meat cooks evenly. Those who make Al Pastor slice it right off the stick to use for tacos and more. Al Pastor tacos are the single most popular type of taco served in Mexico City. Delicious toppings for Al Pastor tacos include onions, pineapple, and more.

Carne Asada: The translation of carne asada is “grilled meat.” To make carne asada, you can marinate steak in citrus juices, cumin, and other spices. The cook will thinly slice the meat for tacos and more. Carne asada tacos are deliciously topped with a spoonful of salsa or guacamole for a delicious meal.

Chorizo: Chorizo is pork sausage that is very popular in both Mexican and Spanish cooking. When making chorizo, it is important to use plenty of seasonings to give it a spicy flavor. Annatto seed is a type of seasoning that is in chorizo. Delicious toppings to go with chorizo street tacos include onion, cilantro, and pineapple chunks.


At El Mariachi, we offer authentic street tacos with meat options like steak, Al Pastor, chorizo, and more. We serve all of our street tacos on delicious, warm corn tortillas. Browse our menu to see our options and enjoy some street tacos tonight by ordering online or visiting us today.


El Mariachi Serves Street Tacos and More in the Mid-Ohio Valley

At El Mariachi, we dedicate our restaurant to celebrating Mexican culture and heritage. We serve authentic Mexican cuisine to residents throughout the Mid-Ohio Valley. When you visit our restaurant, you will love our amazing atmosphere as you enjoy your delicious and authentic meal. We have something for every member of your family or group of friends. While you’re here, don’t forget to ask us about fundraising and catering options. When you want authentic Mexican cuisine, choose El Mariachi.


Want more information on our menu of authentic Mexican cuisine or our delicious margaritas, to place your reservation, or to order takeout? Call us today at (304) 420-9005. Remember to like El Mariachi on Facebook to stay informed with updates and specials! El Mariachi in Parkersburg, WV, is the Mid-Ohio Valley’s destination for Mexican street tacos.