Nachos are among our favorite snacks of all time. There’s just something about the blend of crispy tortilla chips topped with everything from brisket to guacamole and beans. They’re filling, savory, and the flavor combinations are endless. Austin’s incredible Tex-Mex culinary scene delivers some of the best nachos you’ll ever put in your mouth. Here’s where to find the best nachos in Austin — whether you like yours savory and spicy or prefer varieties that are sweet and tangy.
Where To Get The Best Nachos in Austin
Nachos may seem simple, but many places get them wrong. They’re either too soggy or too dry or the ingredients don’t work well. Some try to do too much and others are just plain boring. When done to perfection though, this dish can really knock your socks off. Here’s where to go for the best nachos in Austin.
1. El Patio
El Patio has been serving Tex-Mex to Austin locals and visitors for more than 50 years. This restaurant features four different nacho meals using homemade chips, but our favorite is the Special Nachos. The meal features beans, cheese, jalapenos, guacamole, and your choice of beef or chicken. It’s classic and simple, using fresh ingredients and authentic seasonings.
Known as one of the best Austin restaurants, Chuy’s is the place to go for Tex-Mex food. This Mexican restaurant offers two nacho plates. The first is the classic nacho dish featuring chips, refried beans, cheese, and topped with lettuce, pico de gallo, and jalapeños. Then there’s the nacho plate’s big brother: Panchos. It features all the nacho fixings plus fajita chicken, fajita beef or seasoned ground beef, and a big helping of guacamole.
3. Turf N’ Surf Po’ Boys
Turf N’ Surf blends Cajun influences with Tex-Mex staples to create some of the best nachos in Austin. The bae ingredients include black beans, jack cheese, jalapenos, sour cream, and pico de gallo. From there, you can pick from several different meat choices including blackened chicken, blackened ribeye, blackened shrimp, blackened crawfish, buffalo chicken, and pulled pork.
4. Slab BBQ and Beer
Over at 9012 Research Blvd, you’ll find self-proclaimed “dope” eatery Slab BBQ. Their BBQ Nachos are as big as Texas and feature the star ingredient: brisket. The dish starts with crispy tortilla chips, piled high with brisket or rib meat and topped with queso, pickles, jalapenos, and Backyard Red sauce. It’s messy and oh so delicious — just the way nachos should be.
5. Culinary Dropout
Culinary Dropout puts a Texas spin on this tasty snack with their BBQ Pork Belly Nachos. You’ll get a heaping serving of tender pork belly plus all the fixings including black beans, guacamole, sour cream, and pico de gallo. Pair your nachos with one of their draught beers, margaritas, or the Paloma Spritz.
6. El Chile Cafe y Cantina
With almost 20 years of serving the local community, El Chile Cafe has some of the best Tex-Mex food and margaritas in town. They make fresh flour and corn tortillas in-house every day and all of their sauces are also made from scratch. With the freshest ingredients, you’d be a fool to miss their nachos. They come with refried beans, jack cheese, and jalapenos. Plus you can add beef, chicken, barbacoa, or shrimp.
7. Azul Tequila
Azul Tequila uses Aztec influences and authentic recipes that have been passed down through generations. Try their Nachos Tejanos, which include beans, queso, sour cream, jalapenos, and guacamole drizzled on top of crispy tortilla chips. The dish can be ordered with a choice of meat or as a vegetarian option. They also have a large selection of other Mexican food including enchiladas and fajitas.
8. Joann’s Fine Foods
Located in the heart of Austin on South Congress, Joann’s Fine Foods offers both breakfast and lunch nachos depending on your taste. The Hashbrown Nachos are a great way to start your day. They’re made with black beans, queso, pico, sour cream, and charred tomatillo. Add an egg on top to complete the dish. For lunch, opt for Joann’s Nachos, featuring all the fixings plus a choice of chicken tinga or picadillo, steak, or barbacoa. DOn’t miss their extensive list of tequila and mezcal to go with your meal.
Manuel’s is a local Austinite favorite thanks to its use of locally-sourced and fresh ingredients whenever possible. Everything about their nachos is authentic and fresh. They make the tortilla chips from scratch and use fresh tomatoes and toppings in every plate. Plus, they use only all-natural chicken breast or beef in the nachos. You can also choose Jumbo Blue Lump Crab as your protein and all the nachos are gluten-free.
10. Super Burrito
Super Burrito serves up super nachos at their two locations in Austin, Texas. The loaded nachos include beans, pico de gallo, cheese, sour cream, guacamole, and your choice of meat. They focus on using fresh and authentic spices and ingredients so you know you’re getting the real deal at this Tex-Mex hotspot.
11. Texas Chili Parlor
At 1409 Lavaca St, you’ll find Texas Chili Parlor and their Killer Nachos. The dish features Monterey jack and cheddar cheese plus olives, tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos. It’s simple and classic without a lot of fuss.
12. El Taquito
El Taquito got its start as a food cart in Matamoros, Mexico. Today, you can find this authentic eatery on Riverside Drive, serving up some of the best nachos in Austin. The nachos feature all the works — including beans, cheese, and a choice of various meats plus salsa and guacamole. Try some of their other Mexican cuisine including quesadillas, chile relleno, and chilaquiles.
Eat Your Heart Out in Austin
From food trucks in downtown Austin to patio dining options, grabbing delicious nachos with a cool ambiance is easy in Austin, Texas. Best of all, the city is packed with Tex-Mex delights from tacos and tamales to queso and migas. Need help finding the best eateries? Keep browsing ATX Guides to find the deets on everything from the best places to get tacos in Austin to the best happy hour in town and tips on late-night activities.