If you haven’t snacked on tacos or tortas at 4am on Mexico City’s streets, you haven’t lived. With a fantastic nightlife culture, plus a wealth of 24-hour (or close to it) street stands and restaurants, late-night and early-morning snacking is a must in Mexico City. Here’s our pick of the top spots for late-night eats.
Super Tacos Chupacabras
Restaurant, Mexican, Street Food
A classic taco lover’s option in Mexico City, Super Tacos Chupacabras is open 24 hours, so it’s definitely one to keep in mind when that late-night snack craving hits. Located right next to the Metro Coyoacán, under a bridge, it sounds unappealing, but their legendary tacos chupacabras (a combination of three meats, topped with the extras and sauces of your choice) are unmissable. One of their highly recommended added extras is mashed potato.
If you’re not in the Coyoacán region of the city when hunger strikes, keep your fingers crossed that you find yourself in Tacubaya, because that’s where you’ll find an equally popular taco joint, El Borrego Viudo. Known for its speed and ultra-affordability, this is one 24-hour taco store you simply have to try. Order the Mexico City classic, tacos al pastor, and give their famed tepache (fermented pineapple juice) a try.
Your third and final late-night taco option is El Huequito, which specialises in, well, nothing. Instead, they offer a mind-boggling range of tacos, from sirloin steak to the classic tacos al pastor, although there are also tortas on the menu, if you just feel like loading up on carbs before heading home to bed. It shuts at 4am, so hurry on down there.
Moving onto restaurant and café options for late-night eats in Mexico City, the famous and excellently named Café El Popular is one not to miss. Choose anything you like from their enormous plates of chilaquiles, stuffed peppers, or the classic salsa-doused enchiladas, and accompany it with pan dulce or coffee. Ideal if you want cheap and cheerful Mexican cuisine, but make sure you have cash, as they don’t take cards.
You might ask why a fancy French restaurant, located in one of Mexico City’s swankiest hotels, stays open 24 hours, and we’re just as baffled. However, never look a gift horse in the mouth, and Au Pied De Cochon is quite the gift horse. Here you can indulge in anything from French onion soup to decadent foie gras and wash it all down with one of the 1,500 bottles of wine on offer. Just don’t expect your bill to be modest at the end of it.
If fancy French food is less your style, and you’d prefer some greasy American grub in the early hours, then Condesa’s Barracuda Diner is the place to head for. All your fattening favourites, such as burgers, curly fries, and thick milkshakes, are here, and it’s open until 1.30am. Barracuda Diner is the perfect late-night spot for comfort food and a retro vibe.
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You may be wondering why we recommend Sanborns, a generic chainstore café, as the ideal place to eat in the early hours of the morning in Mexico City, but when you see how quiet and welcoming the place can be when the rest of the city is in bed, you’ll wonder no more. This place is famous for inventing Mexico City’s signature enchiladas suizas. One of the perks of going at 2am include the freshness of the food – you won’t get anything that’s been left out under the lights, because you’re probably the only customers in there.
Another popular Mexican chain is La Casa del Toño, and as previously mentioned, the perks of visiting in the early hours include a lack of crowds. That is mighty unusual in this popular pozole restaurant too, which is known for generous portions of every Mexican’s favourite stew-like dish. While we recommend the Narvarte branch, there are two other La Casa de Toño options that are open 24 hours: the Zona Rosa location and Echegaray, which is ideal if you’re craving trusty Mexican cuisine.
An alternative to the aforementioned Café El Popular, La Pagoda is arguably the more ‘local’ option if you’re hunting for 24-hour cafes. While El Popular has a rightly excellent reputation, those in the know claim that La Pagoda is cheaper and tastier, with a superior pan dulce selection. So, if you’re in the market for sweet bread late at night, get yourself down there and make the most of the abundant choice, reliable service and fair prices.
It’s not all about the stodgy, savoury treats when it comes to late-night snacking in Mexico City, as there’s one place which takes a leaf out of the Spaniards’ books and offers churros and chocolate 24 hours a day. The legendary Churrería El Moro is a must-visit when in Mexico City anyway, but arguably even more so if your sweet tooth’s kicked in and it’s past midnight. Try the sugary cinnamon churros accompanied by whatever type of chocolate takes your fancy – there are four to choose from!