Taqueria Las Mulas - El Cajon

At least 3 people told me about Taqueria Las Mulas, always in glowing terms. Best tacos in San Diego…Awesomest tacos in San Diego…OMG, these tacos are so good. But being the jaded Mexiphile that I am I kind of blew off the recommendations. But not today…

Are they the bestest most badass awesome tacos in San Diego? No, but they really are pretty damn good.

It’s El Cajon, the location is rather unassuming and non-descript. But walk in the door and the interior is actually quite charming, done up with a Mexican loteria theme. I should disclose, I am a sucker for loteria (think Mexican Bingo). It’s not a huge menu, basically tacos or burritos. They offer 7 types of meat fillings for them…birria de res, carne asada, suadero (a smooth cut of meat between the belly and leg, usually fried & chopped, very tasty), tripas, al pastor, lomo (pork loin) enchipolada and buche (innards). Order at the counter just to the right when you enter, then grab a seat. They’ll bring 4 salsas and chips to your table while you wait.

So what did we order? Check it out

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Taco on the left is birria de res, taco on the right is al pastor. I preferred the birria taco to the al pastor, it was unctous and had that great beefy flavor you get from long braising. The al pastor was sliced off a real trompo and was tasty and tender but had just a bit too much allspice for my palate. My dining companion thought it was fine and he knows Mexican food as well as I do.

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This trio of tacos was, left to right, al pastor, carne asada (yes it had whole beans on it) and lomo enchipolada. My friend was extremely please with the lomo enchipolada and said it was the best of the 3 he had, followed by the al pastor with the carne asada coming in 3rd. He said there was nothing wrong with the carne asada, just that he liked the other 2 better.

I had heard that the 4 table salsas were nothing special

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The bottom left was a quite good chipotle salsa, and the bottom right a pretty decent sort of salsa cruda. The 2 thin salsas were neither bad, nor good, just kind of average

Jamacia and horchata are made in-house. The jamacia was pretty good just bordering on being too sweet. The horchata was too sweet and also had too much canela in it. When I wavered about which one to order, they gave me a taste and I told them I thought the horchata was too sweet with too much cinnamon. On the way out, the manager (probably the owner) stopped us and said he’d talked with the employee about the horchata and she agreed and said she hadn’t added as much ice to dilute it as usual. As a customer I appreciated being listened to and the feedback.

2 tacos and a large jamacia cost me $6.85, I thought that was a heck of a deal.

I know this board doesn’t get a lot of attention, but really guys, if you’re out in El Cajon (jury duty, DMV), do yourself a favor and try Las Mulas, it’s really good. So good in fact that I’m thinking of going back tomorrow for another birria taco and to try the suadero which I almost always order in Mexico but have never tried in the U.S…okay, I’ve never really ever seen it in the U.S.

Taqueria Las Mulas
1024 Broadway, El Cajon
Between Mollison & 1st St
North side of Broadway…about 3 or 4 miles east of Parkway Plaza

3 Likes

Thanks for this! I’m in that area quite often. Can’t wait to try it.

Yeah, we tried them at Tacotopia last year.

What did they serve and how did they do?
Tend to think they’re probably better in situ than at an event?

I’m totally smitten with the birria taco

Thank you, always looking for places in SD.

Al pastor and carne asada.

I think something like goat would’ve been to daring for Tacotopia’s crowd.

I can’t really recall if it was memorable or not. At an event like that, all the tacos seem to blend together.

Thanks for the heads up on this one; I’ve been twice in the last week.
My thoughts with a fairly small sampling of the menu, I’ve only tried the carne asada and al pastor, … miles and miles ahead of your average taco shop, very cute decor in the dining area and pleasant and efficient staff.
Foodwise, as mentioned, far above the most in San Diego, excellent tortillas. Oddly, I find the meat to be a bit underseasoned, as in needing salt, which is much preferred to the alternative of course, but otherwise the flavor and quality are good. The 4 house made salsas that are served with excellent fresh tortilla chips are also made on premise but they too are a little bland and slightly boring.
Minor complaints aside, definitely some of the best Mexican eats in East County.

Next time you go back, try the birria or enchipotlada tacos. If it’s not raining too hard tomorrow, I’m thinking about going out for lunch and the birria tacos. A friend tried the tripas and loved it. I’m not big on tripe, it’s a textural thing for me, but my friend said it was some of the best she’s had at a taco shop in SD.

We ate there last Friday and were very pleased with the tacos although we had a limited sampling. We found the service quite good and very pleasant with the owner very responsive and obviously proud of his taqueria. Place was clean and air conditioned. Tacos were, surprisingly, under-seasoned but the overall profile was very good and the flavors were well balanced. Tortillas were good although not made in-house I believe. All in all an excellent taco and someplace to visit when we find ourselves east of I-5. Thanks, DD!