Austin-Style Breakfast Tacos – Recipe

Austin-Style Breakfast Tacos
Austin-Style Breakfast Tacos

I‘ve had the good fortune to travel to Austin a couple of times in the last year or so, and it is always good fun. Like Portland, Milwaukee, or Brooklyn, it is a place where people understand that work is important, but having a beer and a bite with friends, listening to music, or just kicking back on the front porch is just as important.

Austin might be most famous for barbeque, but breakfast tacos seem to be a close second. Ask five Austinites where to get the best breakfast tacos and you’ll get six opinions. One time I had a flight out to catch at 6 AM, and several friends got into a 15 minute discussion of where I could ask the cab driver to stop at 4:30. (I wasn’t quite that committed, but I probably should have been – the options at the airport were dismal indeed.)

Like all tacos, the ingredient choices can be flexible. There are just two key principles: use good, soft, warm corn tortillas, and don’t overfill them. A taco should be just about three bites of food, and if you are hungry, well you just need more tacos.

The version below uses refried beans, potatoes, scrambled eggs, salsa, and minced cilantro & onion. If you want to make a vegan version, try butternut squash or tofu.

Austin-Style Breakfast Tacos
Vegetarian, gluten free, and kosher
Serves 4 generously (3 tacos each)

  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 1 1/2 cups refried beans, hot
  • 24 small potatoes, oven roasted with olive oil and salt, halved
  • 10 tender scrambled eggs
  • Fresh salsa (a smoky one is nice)
  • 1 bunch cilantro minced with 1/2 white onion
  • Hot sauce (Tapatio or whatever you like)
  1. Heat the tortillas either on a griddle, or by wrapping in a clean, slightly dampened towel and microwaving for about two minutes until soft.
  2. For each taco, spread on a couple of tablespoons of refried beans, and top with 4 potato halves. Spoon in some of the scrambled eggs, then a bit of salsa and a sprinkle of cilantro and onions. Serve right away, while still hot, and pass the hot sauce at the table.
Print Friendly and PDF
Posted by Michael Natkin on Sunday, November 3rd, 2013 in Breakfast, Gluten-Free or modifiable, Kid Friendly, Main Courses, Recipes, Travel.

20 Responses to “Austin-Style Breakfast Tacos – Recipe”

  1. Reply
    November 3, 2013 at 11:58 am #

    Oh yum. Question: how do you know if a salsa is smoky?

    • Reply
      November 4, 2013 at 6:39 am #

      If it has chipotle, it will be smoky; otherwise it will generally say something about smokiness on the label. “Fire roasted” could be another cue. Or try this one: link to

    • Reply
      July 1, 2014 at 10:21 am #

      Susan dip you finger in the salsa if it “bites” to hot, add a couple of drops of cream or milk, that will counter the acid from the chile to a more mild eatable level if you are not used to the heat of good smoking hot pepper like cascabel, Jalapeno, o de arbol.
      Hope that will help next time you get the sting of a hot salsa



  2. Reply
    November 3, 2013 at 2:18 pm #

    I love Tacos, and the recipe you are sharing seems amazing, and so easy to prepare! Great stuff in your site, as always. Thanks!

  3. Reply
    November 4, 2013 at 9:13 am #

    Oh God, that pineapple and tomatilla salsa recipe is killing me. I love salsa recipes with a piquaint fuit flavor. Question: is there an easier way to introduce the smoky flavor, like using a small amount of that smoke condiment, whose name escapes me right now? Or would that be a gross and disgusting cheat? Thank you for your help.

    • Reply
      November 4, 2013 at 9:18 am #

      You could try liquid smoke, but start with literally a drop. Or, you could use a smoked salt. This one is great: link to . Or, you could get a smoking gun, I have one and love it: link to

  4. Reply
    November 5, 2013 at 9:47 pm #

    Lovely breakfast tacos…I like this and thanks for sharing this recipe..It is really easy to prepare..

  5. Reply
    November 6, 2013 at 6:27 am #

    Try the Chipotle Tobasco. Great on eggs of any kind.

  6. Reply
    November 7, 2013 at 12:29 pm #

    Love these tacos, thanks for sharing the recipe.

  7. Reply
    November 25, 2013 at 2:55 am #

    Saw your blog mentioned in an article. I now follow you and John Contratti’s “Cooking With Mr. C.” They’re my two favorite blogs. Happy Thanksgiving. Sharon

  8. Reply
    December 9, 2013 at 8:38 am #

    I really must get into Breakfast Burritos/Taco’s more! I would use tofu instead of eggs or maybe the potato would be just as good, too! These look awesome!

  9. Reply
    December 11, 2013 at 7:53 am #

    I love anything that has a latin theme! These look amazing I think i will have to try today!

  10. Reply
    January 21, 2014 at 7:28 am #

    Fresh tortillas are the real secret!

  11. Reply
    February 10, 2014 at 1:40 pm #

    Ya I’m in Austin and there is definitely no shortage of good Mexican food, which means lots and lots of breakfast tacos of all kinds of varieties. Hard to go wrong when a tortilla is involved though =)

  12. Reply
    April 3, 2014 at 4:58 am #

    I just see it already contains salivating. very tasty likely

  13. Reply
    April 4, 2014 at 6:23 pm #

    These breakfast tacos look so tasty with all that fresh cilantro! J+C

  14. Reply
    July 2, 2014 at 9:29 am #

    Tony, thank you for the tip! I have trouble with ulcers, so can’t tolerate a lot of heat, but hate missing out on otherwise great food. Can’t wait to give your suggestion a try. Susan

  15. Reply
    August 5, 2014 at 9:01 am #

    I’m glad you’ve fallen in love with the breakfast taco! Whenever I leave Austin it’s the first thing I get when I come back.

  16. Reply
    January 26, 2015 at 10:44 am #

    I take issue with your statement that the options for breakfast tacos at AIBA are “dismal.” Our very charming airport only allows local vendors and therefore offers much of the same great taco options you would find around town. Here’s a link to an Eater article from 2011 but, like the rest of Austin, the airport and the dining options have grown since then. Love your site!

  17. Reply
    September 1, 2015 at 10:57 am #

    one of your next trips, you should try Juan in a Million if you haven’t yet. one of my faves when i lived there. its on east cesar chavez–on the east side of 35. yummm yumm. However, its hard to get a bad breakfast taco there.

Leave a Reply