Seven Spots to Get Amazing Tamales in Austin

A fan of masa but a mess in the kitchen? Leave it to the pros.

Delicious, portable, and endlessly customizable with an infinite variety of possible fillings, tamales are a crowd-pleasing treat that never gets old.

But unless you have a very loving abuela or a neighbor who goes door to door with a cooler (one of the greatest assets of local communities, in our opinion), they’re also a heck of a lot of work. Fortunately for us lazy-but-festive fans of masa, Austin has so many excellent places to pick up tamales that you’re just a quick pre-order away from filling your freezer with enough tamales to last you through 2019.

Juarez Mexican Bakery

This family-run neighborhood spot is worth the drive up to Round Rock for their fantastic homemade tortillas and pastries and – yes, of course – tamales, which are spicy and simple with tender masa and a variety of savory fillings. They’re super fresh (made while you wait) and available to order by the dozen, the best possible gift to bring to any gathering. 1701 S. Mays, Round Rock.

La Finca Supermercado

With shelves packed with all the ingredients necessary for cooking up authentic Mexican dishes, La Finca is a great place to visit for those Austinites ambitious enough to consider making their own tamales. And for the rest of us, the restaurant at the back of the supermarket sells premade tamales to go, at the unbeatable price of $1 a pop. 9616 N. Lamar #130.

Rosie’s Tamale House

The unfussy wood paneled space of Rosie’s speaks to their classic homestyle approach to Tex Mex cooking. There’s nothing on the menu here that your grandmother wouldn’t recognize, and she’d appreciate their years-long tradition of take-home Christmas tamales, set off by a festive Santa Claus statue someone probably purchased back in 1972. 13436 Hwy. 71 W., Bee Cave.

El Rinconcito Chapin

The Guatemalan tamales served up at this unpretentious North Austin treasure are very different from the more familiar Mexican variety. They’re about twice as large, for starters, and wrapped in banana or maxan leaves – but they’re just as delicious. 6539 N. Lamar.

Photo by David Brendan Hall

La Mexicana Bakery

Not only does this delightful panadería make some of the best authentic tortillas, cakes, pan dulces, bolillo, and telera bread – used in restaurants all across Austin – and tamales by the dozen, they’re also open 24 hours a day. This doesn’t guarantee you’ll get those 2am tamales, though; when we called, they were all sold out for the next three days, so get on it if you want ’em. 1924 S. First.

La Cocina de Consuelo

What started out as a church fundraiser meal in 1963 gradually grew into a catering business in the Nineties, and then, when founder Connie Martinez finally opened her dream restaurant at the age of 63: this cozy, azure-walled, Rosedale-neighborhood favorite. You better believe they have a secret freezer full of tamales ready for customers in the know. 4516 Burnet Rd.

Tamale House East

They’re probably better known for their (killer) breakfast tacos and live music on weekends, but tamales are in the name at Tamale House East, and they take the art form seriously. The tamales here are $1.50 each, available in flavors like chicken and tomatillo, pork, and jalapeño, bean, and cheese. Add cheese and their delicious house made mole for an additional $1.25. 1707 E. Sixth.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More by Emily Beyda
Alternative Fresh Food Options Still Serving Austin
Alternative Fresh Food Options Still Serving Austin
The usual grocery suspects are crowded. Try these instead.

April 17, 2020

Austin Restaurant Take-Out and Other Food Delivery Options During Coronavirus Quarantine
Take-Out and Other Food Delivery Options
Support local business while maintaining your social distance

March 16, 2020

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle