Spread of Tex-Mex cuisine on a tablecloth
Ranking 11 Mexican Restaurant Chains From Worst To Best
11. Taco Bell
Despite its innovation, Taco Bell has several negative factors, including its reliance on questionable ingredients such as refried beans that come in pellet form.
Additionally, not every Taco Bell innovation lands with consumers or tastes particularly good, such as the inedible waffle taco or Cheetos burrito.
10. Del Taco
Del Taco slow-cooks its beans from scratch every day and places a greater emphasis on fresh ingredients. It also offers options for vegans and vegetarians.
9. Chipotle
Chipotle prioritizes fresh ingredients and meals made from scratch by hand. However, they have struggled with issues of food safety over the years.
The chain saw so many outbreaks and food safety issues that it agreed to pay a $25 million fine to resolve criminal charges for its role in food poisoning cases from 2015 to 2018.
8. El Torito
Founded in 1954, El Torito is a true pioneer in the world of Mexican restaurants and has helped popularize Taco Tuesdays and the Cinco de Mayo holiday in America.
Despite serving freshly prepared meals made from high-quality ingredients, it has filed for bankruptcy twice and has shrunk from 128 locations in 2012 to just 69 as of 2024.
7. Cafe Rio
Every item on the Cafe Rio menu is fresh and made from quality ingredients, which is made more impressive given the diverse nature of the menu.
With only 146 locations, Cafe Rio is significantly smaller than other chains on this list. If it continues its trend of fresh, quality food, its popularity will continue growing.