Authentic Oaxaca Restaurant Guide: Top 14 Restaurants You Want to Try in Oaxaca

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Oaxaca, the gastronomy capital of Mexico, has seen its restaurant scene growing in popularity in recent years.

From street food, mom and pop eateries, to fine dining restaurants, Oaxaca offers a plethora of restaurants to choose from.

To taste the best Oaxaca foods, use this Oaxaca restaurant guide we’ve put together after 6 months of eating our way through the city.

Each of the restaurants highlighted strives to promote Oaxacan traditional food and the best of Mexican cuisine.

Please note, this is not a comprehensive list of all Oaxaca restaurants.

Rather, these 14 restaurants in Oaxaca offer opportunities to dive into local specialties at unpretentious venues.

Get ready for a feast, you’ve picked the best city in Mexico for food.

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There are many restaurants in Oaxaca that offer traditional cuisine. 

Two of our favorite Oaxaca restaurants are Las Quince Letras and Levadura de Olla. 

Las Quince Letras has been around since 1992 and is best known for exceptional mole dishes. 

Levedura de Olla, opened only within the last 12 months is a new restaurant also focused on indigenous cuisine. The restaurant’s focus is to bring back lesser known Oaxaca recipes and celebrate the traditional meals. 

These two restaurants will offer exceptional Oaxaca foods from two different perspectives. Be sure to make room in your schedule to check them both out.

1- Las Quince Letras

Chile en Nogada at Las Quince Letras for Oaxaca restaurants by Authentic Food Quest
Poblano peppers stuffed with picadillo and a delicious walnut sauce and pomegranate seeds at Las Quince Letras

One of the best restaurants in Oaxaca for traditional Oaxaca cuisine is Las Quince Letras.

Celia Florián, chef and co-owner with her husband, is famous for her work promoting the diversity of Oaxaca’s cuisine.

When we first arrived in Oaxaca, Las Quince Letras was recommended to us on multiple occasions. It was described as one of the best restaurants in Oaxaca for traditional cuisine.

We ate at the restaurant on two separate occasions. The first was to sample Oaxaca’s celebrated moles. And the second time was during the celebration of Mexico’s Independence to taste the emblematic Chiles en Nogada dish.

On both occasions, the food was exquisite. Oaxaca’s traditional flavors are brought to life in a contemporary setting.

If you are looking to discover Oaxaca’s culinary traditions, we highly recommend Las Quince Letras. The food draws on the diversity of flavors from the state of Oaxaca. 

In addition to the famous moles, you can sample dishes made from Oaxaca’s chiles, corn, seafood, and more.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Mole and Traditional Cuisine

Las Quince Letras Claire and Rosemary with Celia Florian by Authentic Food Quest
Claire and Rosemary with chef Celia Florián at Las Quince Letras restaurant

Las Quince Letras has been around since 1992 and the restaurant is a favorite amongst locals and tourists. The space has a blend of modern and traditional decor and it is open and inviting.

The friendly staff will welcome you and guide you through the menu options. The portions are generous and we highly recommend leaving room for the chocolate tamale dessert.

Las Quince Letras

Address: Calle de Mariano Abasolo 300, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open every day from 8:30 am – 9:00 pm 

Price: Dishes range from 110 to 205 pesos (approx. $5.16 to $9.62)

Pro Tip: Order the trilogy of moles and sample three different Oaxaca mole sauces

2- Levadura de Olla

Levadura de Olla Oaxaca Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
To-die for tamal with requeson cheese and two different mole sauces

Levadura de Olla is a hidden gem with a tiny entrance off Murguia street. Once you walk in, you are invited to sit in the intimate courtyard across the restaurant kitchen.

At Levadura de Olla, the attention is on pre-Hispanic food, rooted in ancient corn and beans, the base of Mexican food.

The menu celebrates local Oaxacan specialties with unique dishes and a creative twist from the chef.

To get started, you have a taste of salsa roja, a tomato base sauce with a sampling of toasted ancient corn.

We chose to share our meal starting with an exquisite appetizer salad made with native tomatoes, and beetroot puree. 

We continued with the tamal de requeson, made with flor de cabalaza, or squash blossom. Served with two types of mole, this surprising dish has you sample some of the must try flavors of Oaxaca.

The tamal was refined, melting in the mouth, accompanied with two delicate types of moles.

These were some of the finest dishes we tasted in Oaxaca, along with an attentive and friendly service. 

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Indigeneous Cuisine

Levadura de Olla Best Restaurant in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Charming outdoor seating at Levadura de Olla restaurant in Oaxaca

Levadura de Olla was one of our best surprises from the different Oaxacan restaurants we researched and tried.

Recently open and still relatively unknown, we definitely recommend to any visitors this fine cuisine restaurant from talented chef Thalia Garcia.

And if you decide to share, we advise to sample several unique dishes to satisfy your appetite.

Levadura de Olla

Address: Murguía 304, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open every day from 1:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Price: About 110 to 160 pesos per main dish (Approx. $5.30 to $7.80)

READ MORE: Oaxaca Foods – Your Best Guide To The Most Authentic Foods

Best Restaurants in Oaxaca For Fine Dining

We’ve categorized the following as fine dining restaurants in Oaxaca mostly because of the experience. These Oaxaca restaurants exude elegance and are well known for great food and service.

These four Oaxaca restaurants range in price point and they are not necessarily the most expensive. What we love about each of them is their celebration of indigenous ingredients in delightful ways.

3- Teocintle

Dinner at Teocintle Restaurant for Oaxaca Restaurant in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Beautifully presented mole verde with local vegetables and herb infused waters

Teocintle is one of the newer restaurants in Oaxaca. We visited the restaurant at their new location near La Merced market. They moved into this smaller location only about two months prior to our visit due to the pandemic.

The restaurant is intimate with only four tables. The name Teocintle refers to the wild ancestor plant from which corn was domesticated.

The name is also a nod to the use of ancestral techniques used in their cuisine. The menu changes daily and based on what is in season. 

Teocintle offers a five-course dining experience. There is no menu and the chef will prepare your meal based on the best seasonal products.. If you have any requirements, the chef will be pleased to adjust the cuisine based on your needs.

Our five course dinner was an exquisite and colorful journey through the Mixtec region of Oaxaca.

Dinner started with a seafood aguachile with shrimp and local peppers. Following was chicharron with pumpkin and spinach sauce accompanied by a tasty blend of vegetables. 

A mole verde with local vegetables was next. And this was followed by pork smoked pancetta with chayote and delicious poblano sauce.

The most surprising was a tasty vegan brownie dessert with pumpkin cream and a no-sugar guava ice cream.

The menu also included a range of infused waters to go with the dishes. This was one the most creative meals we enjoyed and everything was incredibly fresh. 

The presentation is outstanding and the portions just right.

Best Oaxacan Restaurant for Native Mixtec Cuisine

Teocintle Oaxaca Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
Intimate dining experience at Teocintle Restaurant

Teocintle restaurant has a comfortable homey feel and we recommend booking in advance. 

Chef Toño García and his friend, chef Azael Jiménez, make you feel right at home with surprising and delicious Oaxaca flavors.

Even though you can have beer or Mezcal, go for the unusual herb-infused waters which bring out the food flavors.


Address: Primera Privada de Independencia 12, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open everyday except Sunday from 1:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Price: A five-course meal at Teocintle costs 350 pesos per person (Approx. $17.00 per person)

Pro Tip: Teocintle is opened despite showing “closed” on Google maps. Check the restaurant location with the new address above and make sure to book ahead and reserve your table.

4- Los Danzantes

Los Dazantes Oaxaca Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
The three symbols above the name represent each of the owners in a traditional dance

Los Danzantes is one of those restaurants in Oaxaca you’ll find in guidebooks on the higher tiered price point.

What made us choose Los Danzantes over other high-end restaurants is its focus on local and endemic foods rooted in Mexican tradition. 

Also talking with oaxaqueñas, Los Danzantes had a better reputation for its food and price rapport than the other restaurants.

We learned later that Los Danzantes is owned by two brothers who started first in Coyoacan, Mexico, before opening Los Danzantes in Oaxaca. 

They also started their own distillery offering one of the finest mezcal in the region, early on. In keeping with their focus on Mexican products, their wine menu is dedicated 100% to Mexican wines.

Their food menu focuses on local Oaxacan ingredients of the finest quality. The appetizers offered were a nice start to our pleasant dinner.

We particularly enjoyed the mole tasting that consisted of four exquisite moles to taste with homemade tortillas.

We highly recommend ordering your mole tasting with the mezcal pairing. Each mezcal had its unique smoky flavors which married perfectly with the moles. This is a great introduction to moles, mezcal and the Oaxacan specialties.

Overall our experience was wonderful with a friendly and professional service despite the small plates served.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Local Dining Experience

Mole Tasting at Los Danzantes by Authentic Food Quest
Mole and mezcal pairing at Los Danzantes

Los Danzantes is an open air restaurant set in a beautiful location. Located next to Santo Domingo church, the restaurant is popular with locals and tourists alike.

It is the perfect restaurant for a special occasion and a unique dining experience.

Los Danzantes

Address: Calle Macedonio Alcalá 403, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open everyday from 2:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Price: Main dishes are about 195 to 285 pesos (Approx. $9.48 to $13.86 per person)

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: Taking a food tour in Oaxaca is a delicious way to experience the traditional specialties at local eateries. Over a 4-hour period, this guided tour takes you through downtown Oaxaca where you’ll try 20+ foods and drinks. From mole to mezcal, you’ll explore Oaxaca’s rich culinary history on this delicious food tour.

5- Zandunga – Isthmus Cuisine

Plate of Ismena cuisine at Zandunga Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
Platter of unique and flavorful istmeño specialties

Food from the Isthmus of Tehuantepec region of Oaxaca state can be found at many restaurants in Oaxaca.

Zandunga is one of the best restaurants in Oaxaca for Istmeño cuisine. Eager to learn about food from this part of the state, we stopped in for dinner one evening,

Not familiar with the menu options, we went with the servers recommendation to order the sampler platter for two.

The platter, Botana Zandunga, had local specialties like garnachas, molotes, regional beef and tamales, empanadas and more.

From their extensive mezcal menu, we opted for two mezcal cocktails, to go along with our meal 

The food was tasty and full of unique flavors. We especially enjoyed the garnachas, which are small fried corn tortillas topped with beef. The molotes, which are stuffed banana plantains, were also delicious.

The sampler was enough for two and a wonderful introduction to istmeño cuisine.

For food from the Isthmus, we recommend Zandunga restaurant in Oaxaca.


Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Isthmus Cuisine

Zandunga Restaurant in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Colorful interior at Zandunga Restaurant in Oaxaca

Zandunga Restaurant in the Historic Center has a modern and friendly staff. We sat directly behind the bar and were fascinated by the range and diversity of mezcal bottles.

The staff was attentive without being intrusive. This is a great restaurant in Oaxaca to relax with a mezcal cocktail and sample regional flavors.

Zandunga Restaurant

Address: Garcia Vigil 512-E, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open Monday – Saturday from 2:00 pm – 11:00 pm

Price: The Botana Zanduga platter for two costs 450 pesos (Approx. $21.96 for two)

6- Expendió Tradición 

Garnachas for Oaxaca food by Authentic Food Quest
Tasty garnachas heaped with shredded meat, pickled slaw and a dipping sauce

The huge windows overlooking the streets at the corner of Reforma and Murguia is where you’ll find this Oaxaca restaurant.

Expendio Tradición restaurant is owned by the Chagoya family who have been in the mezcal business since 1897.

The modern, high design restaurant features mezcal from the Chagoya label and food from Oaxaca made using endemic ingredients.

The restaurant is popular with locals and is a great spot for mezcal and little bites like memelitas, tlayudas, tacos and home baked goods.

You can also enjoy full dishes such as a variety of mole sauces, fish and beef plates and more.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Mezcal and Oaxacan Cuisine

Mezcal cocktails at Expendio Tradicion in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Rojo Tradicion (red) and El Tule (green) mezcal cocktails in the outdoor courtyard at Expendio Tradicion

The inviting contemporary decor, along with the variety of mezcal options is what initially attracted us to this Oaxaca restaurant.

Once we walked in the staff welcomed us warmly and made us feel right at home. With excellent cocktails, warm interior design, and outstanding Oaxaca food, Expendió Tradición is not to be missed.

Expendio Tradicion 

Address: Corner of Calle Reforma and Murguía, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open every day from 1:00 pm – 11:00 pm

Price: Dishes range in price from 100 – 570 pesos (Approx. $4.90 – $28). Mezcal cocktails from 100 – 135 pesos (Approx. $4.90 – $6.65)

Pro Tip: Don’t miss the Expendio Tradicion bakery on Murguía street for fresh breads and pastries

Best Restaurants in Oaxaca For Outdoor Seating

Many restaurants in Oaxaca offer wonderful outdoor dining spaces. Some are courtyard or garden spaces. While others offer panoramic views of the city and surrounding mountains. 

The lunch meal which is served anywhere between 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm is the perfect time to enjoy these restaurants.

The following three restaurants each offer amazing Oaxacan food which just seems to taste better when eaten outdoors.

7- Baltazar

Baltazar lunch meal in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Tasty lunch menu at Baltazar

Baltazar is conveniently located inside the mezcal house Convite. This friendly restaurant is a no brainer for their excellent menu del dia, menu of the day, served starting at 1:00 pm. 

For 65 pesos, you enjoy a three-course meal, served with the typical agua frescas or fresh fruity water and their specialty tetelas.

Tetelas are made with corn and shaped like a triangle and traditionally stuffed with beans and cheese.

We first went for lunch and enjoyed a creamy chayote soup, a local vegetable from the squash family found in Oaxaca. Served with fresh guava water and tetelas, we were impressed by the quality of the food.

We came back to enjoy an afternoon on their charming patio. We chose to sip on Colibri and Baltazar, some of the best mezcal cocktails we had in Oaxaca.

This time we ordered one of their specialty tetelas available from their menu. It is a great way to dive deeper into the local cuisine.

The service is very friendly and the lunch menu is available all afternoon. 

Best Oaxacan Restaurant for Lunch Menu

Mezcal cocktails at Baltazar in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Refreshing mezcal cocktails in the courtyard at Baltazar

It is easy to spend a leisurely lunch at Baltazar and enjoy their patio with a glass of mezcal.

The food is fresh, creative and delicious, and the service inviting.


Address: Jesús Carranza 113, Centro, Oaxaca 

Hours: Open everyday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm

Price: 65 pesos for the three-course meal menu of the day (Approx. $3.16)

Pro Tip: Don’t miss visiting the showroom at Convite. Learn about mezcal and take a mezcal tasting if you are inclined.

8- Ancestral Cocina Tradicional

Aguachile Ancestral restaurant in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Incredible camarones en Aguachile at Ancestral

This off the beaten Oaxaca restaurant offers a wonderful dining experience in their outdoor garden area.

The restaurant is in the Xochimilco neighborhood, which is a 15 minute walk from Zocalo or a short taxi ride away.

Known for Oaxaca food, Ancestral offers a variety of traditional home cooking like mole, chilaquiles, tetelas, hot chocolate and more.

With its beautiful garden, Ancestral is a popular restaurant in Oaxaca for lunch.

We stopped by one Saturday afternoon and enjoyed a delightful meal in the garden. Rosemary had camarones en Aguachile, a ceviche like shrimp appetizer she had wanted to try for a while.

I had tetelas stuffed with octopus and flor de calabaza or squash blossom quesadillas.

To go along with our meals, Rosemary had a mezcal cocktail while I sipped on a wonderful artisanal beer.

We enjoyed our food listening to live music which is available every Saturday. 

If you are looking for an outdoor restaurant to enjoy traditional Oaxaca food, head outside the historical center to Ancestral.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Lunch Outdoors

Ancestral Outdoor Seating for Oaxaca Restaurants by Authentic Food Quest
Outdoor garden space at Ancestral

Ancestral Oaxaca restaurant is worth the leisurely walk from the center of Oaxaca to Xochimilco neighborhood. Wear comfortable shoes and enjoy the views.

The staff is friendly and can help guide you on the menu choices.If you want to enjoy the beauty of the lovely courtyard, we recommend going after weekends lunch hours.

Do keep in mind the restaurant is not open for dinner.

Ancestral – Cocina Tradicional

Address: José López Alavez 1347, Barrio de Xochimilco, Oaxaca

Hours: Tuesday – Sunday; 9:00 am – 1:00pm and 2:00 pm – 9:00pm, Closed Monday

Price: Breakfast 60 – 110 pesos ( (Approx. $2.90 – $5.42)) and lunch dishes from 70 to 250 pesos for main dishes (Approx. $2.45 to $12.30)

Pro Tip: If you plan on going for lunch on weekends, we highly recommend making reservations in advance.

9- La Olla

Rollo de Barbacoa at La Olla Restaurant in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Exquisite barbacoa flavors on the La Olla lunch or menu del dia

La Olla is located a few blocks from Santo Domingo and offers wonderful views of Oaxaca from the rooftop.

With more than 25 years in business, La Olla is managed by Pilar Cabrera, an internationally acclaimed Oaxacan chef.

Chef Pilar embraces the slow food philosophy, working with local producers to offer traditional and innovative cuisine.

The menu leans on traditional food and classic Oaxacan dishes like molotes, tlayudas, tamales, moles or chile rellenos.

We went first for dinner and really enjoyed our meals. I particularly liked the sopa de frijol, a bean soup with cheese, creamy and mild, topped with pieces of black corn.

Rosemary delighted in her favorite dish, chile rellenos, a stuffed pepper dish we learned to make in an Oaxaca cooking class.

We found the flavors amazing and presented with a creative touch. Though we were a bit disappointed by the small portions.

We went back later for lunch and savored the menu del dia at 120 pesos for a three course meal. 

We particularly relished a typical Day of the Dead dessert which had sweet squash with fresh cheese.

READ MORE:  7 Reasons You Want To Have a Cooking Class in Oaxaca

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Traditional Oaxacan Food

La Olla rooftop in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Oaxaca city views from the rooftop at La Olla Restaurant in Oaxaca

La Olla is a solid option if you want to sample some of the best traditional Oaxacan foods. 

All the ingredients are fresh and the dishes are prepared with care. The menu changes three to four times a year based on what is in season.

La Olla

Address: Reforma 402, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm; Closed on Mondays

Price: 100 to 190 pesos the main dishes (Approx. $4.87 to $9.25), 120 pesos for the lunch menu (Approx. $5.84)

Pro Tip: Skip the main level and instead go up to the rooftop terrace and enjoy the views, especially at sunset.

Best Restaurants For Creative Oaxacan Food

Chefs at a number of restaurants in Oaxaca use the local and indigeneous ingredients to create colorful and creative dishes. 

The following four Oaxaca restaurants are our favorite for Oaxacan foods with a creative twist.

10- Casa Taviche

Pipian at Casa taviche by Authentic Food Quest
Creative and delicious presentation of chicken with pipian sauce

We had the opportunity to meet with Daniel Garcia, chef and owner at Casa Taviche and learn about his restaurant.

The name “taviche” is in honor of a triangular shaped chile from his hometown of Ejutla de Crespo. This local chile is one of the endemic chiles used in Oaxaca food.

Daniel, trained as a chef in the United States and in several Mexican cities. He created Casa Taviche to showcase the best of Mexican cuisine, with a concept he calls cocina mestiza.

On the menu, you’ll find dishes like cochinita pibil from the Yucatan region, signature Oaxaca foods, fish and seafood and more.

For vegetarians, Casa Taviche always has one dish on the menu to cater to non-meat eaters. 

What sets the food apart is the creativity in their dishes. Each plate is as beautiful as it is delicious. 

We ate at Casa Taviche several times, each time ordering something different and always impressed by the depth of flavors.

Some of our most memorable dishes were the rollo de pollo al pipian or chicken with mole sauce. Chiles en Nogada was Rosemary’s favorite dish and we both loved their chocolate tamale and bunuelos for dessert.

Whatever you end up eating, you’ll be delighted with the exquisite cuisine and fresh flavors.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Creative Oaxacan Food

Casa Taviche one of the best restaurants in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Casa Taviche, one of our favorite restaurants in Oaxaca

The staff at Casa Taviche is friendly and attentive to your needs. The pastel colored cozy seating area in the back with dainty wooden tables exudes charm and comfort.

Casa Taviche also offers an affordable menu del dia. This three course menu is beautifully presented and can easily compete with the food at more expensive restaurants in Oaxaca. 

Casa Taviche

Address: Avenida Miguel Hidalgo 1111, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open Tuesday to Sunday from 12:30 pm – 8:00 pm; Closed Mondays

Price: Three course lunch menu costs 110 pesos (Approx. 5.20) per person

Pro Tip: If you are feeling adventurous and are visiting Oaxaca at the start of the rainy season, be sure to order sauce made with chicatana ants. These ants are a regional delicacy and quite delicious. We enjoyed the sauce served with chips.

11- El Tendajon

Meal at Tendajon creative restaurant in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Fresh flavors and exceptional fish tacos at El Tendajon

This Oaxaca restaurant off the city center was another one of our favorite spots in Oaxaca. 

When we walked in, we were surprised to find a garden interior that is not visible from the outside.

With only two tables, we took our place underneath a tree, looking at a fountain and enjoyed a delectable experience.

El Tendajon restaurant in Oaxaca offers creative and fresh approaches to local Oaxaca food. 

One of our favorite dishes was a large tomato salad with different local tomatoes from red to small green ones. The vinaigrette sauce was a delightful mix of olive oil and habanero peppers.

The fish tacos were some of the best we enjoyed in Mexico. Huge camarones served on purple corn tacos with Ejuteca sausage were flavorful and excellent.

One of the most interesting dishes we had was fish with mole sauce. The fish, grouper, was served with a black mole sauce (mole negro) along with a sweet potato puree. 

While we enjoyed the complex flavors, the fish was on the chewy side.

El Tendajon restaurant is also an Agaveria, which means you’ll find a wide selection of agave based drinks.  Rosemary enjoyed an exquisite pulque, a pre-Hispanic agave drink, while I savored an artisanal Tumba 7 beer.

If you are looking for a great spot for lunch or afternoon snack, El Tendajon is one of the best restaurants in Oaxaca to consider. 

The food is creative and exquisitely presented. The outdoor space is charming and the drinks selection is extensive.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Creative Food and Agave Drinks

El Tendajon Oaxaca Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
The courtyard for artisanal drinks at El Tendajon

This little spot is a gem in the city. It is popular for lunch and brunch, and we recommend going outside those hours to enjoy the outdoor space. 

The food is a delicious creative interpretation of local Oaxaca specialties, beautifully presented. 

El Tendajon Agaveria

Address: Calle de José María Pino Suárez #409, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open Tuesday to Sunday, from 9:00 am – 8:00 pm

Price: Dishes range from 60 to 215 pesos (Approx.$2.90 – $10.50 ) and pulque at 40 pesos (approx $1.96)  and beer at 75 pesos (approx. $3.68)

Pro Tip: Don’t miss the excellent selection of drinks from pulque to artisanal beers and mezcal.

12- Cabuche

Rosemary and Claire at Cabuche Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
Rosemary and Claire with delicious pork ribs at Cabuche

Cabuche is an inviting restaurant close to the Zócalo in the downtown area.

At first glance we found their menu to cater to tourists with foreign Mexican favorites like tacos or burritos.

Fortunately, they offer a tasty lunch menu which is centered around the local food. For $100 pesos, you get to enjoy two dishes served with fresh fruity water and coffee included.

To start, we had a refreshing salad with local vegetables, a nice change from food heavy in carbs. 

We relished our main dish of pork ribs cooked in a delicious jamaica or hibiscus and chipotle sauce and mashed potatoes.

Both plates were served with a lovely and tasty presentation.

As a non-coffee drinker, I ended with delicious Oaxacan chocolate which the chef accepted as a substitute for coffee.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Tasty Lunch Options

Salad at Cabuche in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Creative salad presentation at Cabuche

Cabuche makes for a tasty restaurant option at lunch for the menu del dia. Please note they run out of the lunch menu early on. 

Plan to be there before 2:00 pm, which is the busy hour for lunch in Oaxaca.


Address: Miguel Hidalgo 1017, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open from Monday to Saturday from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm; Closed on Sundays

Price: 100 pesos for the lunch menu (Approx. $4.86)

Best Restaurants For Oaxacan Home Cooking

For a low key atmosphere and delicious traditional Oaxaca food, consider eating at our two favorite local Oaxaca restaurants.

Both offer generous portions, great service and are a good value. These restaurants in Oaxaca are not touristy allowing you to soak in the local vibe.

13- El Tipico

El Tipico Oaxaca Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
Hearty quesadillas and chile rellenos with lemon water

Tucked away on a side street from the colorful Jalatlaco neighborhood is the family owned El Tipico restaurant.

This Oaxaca restaurant is known for typical home-cooked meals and is very popular with locals.

The space is bright and airy and there is a small outdoor patio as well.

For traditional Oaxaca cuisine at modest prices, El Tipico restaurant is an excellent choice.

Rosemary could not resist ordering her much loved chile rellenos. Like the ones in the cooking class, the ones at El Tipico were just as flavorful.

I enjoyed traditional quesadillas including squash blossom or flor de calabaza and cheese.

Daily specials at El Tipico include exquisite Oaxacan mole sauces, different soups or guías, Oaxacan snacks like tasajo and more.

The staff is friendly and take great care to make you comfortable. This is the kind of restaurant in Oaxaca where you can take your time and enjoy the food and atmosphere.

Best Restaurant in Oaxaca for Traditional Home Cooking

El Tipico Restaurant Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
The interior of El Tipico restaurant, a great spot for local Oaxaca foods

El Tipico restaurant is located close to El Llano park and is easy to get to. Everyday except Saturday, the restaurant has a menu de dia with daily specials. The restaurant closes at 6:00 pm, so go early to enjoy a leisurely lunch or early dinner.

El Tipico

Address: Calle Zarate No. 100, Centro, Oaxaca 

Hours: Open every day from 9:00 am – 6:00 pm

Price: 70 pesos for the lunch menu (Approx. $3.45)

14- La Casa De La Chef

Lunch at Casa de la chef in Oaxaca by Authentic Food Quest
Soup and salad starter on the lunch menu at Casa de la Chef

La Casa De La Chef is a home-style restaurant off Calzada de la Republica street on the east side of town.

The friendly staff offers a copious and affordable lunch menu or comida corrida. For 75 pesos, you get a three-course meal with two appetizers, one main dish to choose from, served with fresh fruit water.

Popular with locals, the portions are generous and the food is representative of local Mexican food. We liked that you get a fresh salad made with seasonal vegetables at the start of the meal.

They also offer a delicious salsa matcha available at the table to spice up the dishes or spread on the homemade tortillas. 

If you are still hungry, they serve tasty Mexican crepes to close the meal on a sweet finish.

Best Oaxaca Restaurant for Casual Home Cooked Lunches

La Casa de la Chef Oaxaca Restaurant by Authentic Food Quest
Have lunch underneath the trees at Casa de la Chef

La Casa De La Chef is a great option if you are undecided on where to have lunch. The service is friendly and efficient and you will not leave hungry.

We enjoyed seating outside under the trees despite the local traffic on Calzada street.

La Casa De La Chef

Address: Calz. de la República 302, Centro, Oaxaca

Hours: Open from Sunday to Friday from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm; Closed on Saturdays

Price: 75 pesos for the lunch menu (Approx. $3.65)

Map of Restaurants in Oaxaca

Authentic Food Quest Page_Break

In Summary

The growing list of Oaxaca restaurants is a testimony to the vibrant culinary scene in the city. 

While not exhaustive, we trust this Oaxacan restaurant guide will help you enjoy the best spots on your stay. 

Savor local and traditional Oaxacan food at some of the finest restaurants in the city. 

While these restaurants might not be the trendiest in town, they offer cuisine that celebrates the local heritage.

Experience the magic of Oaxaca through its amazing cuisine and restaurant offerings.

A Note About Eating at Oaxaca Restaurants During the Pandemic

Oaxaca restaurants and covid measures by Authentic Food Quest
Covid safe cutlery at Los Danzantes

We have been really impressed by the safety measures put in place by the restaurants during the pandemic. 

Temperature screening, hand sanitizer, shoe sanitizing mats, are all mandatory before entering a restaurant. 

Furthermore, waiters wear gloves, masks and face shields for safety precautions. The cutlery is sanitized for each customer and usually presented in a sealed fashion. 

At some restaurants, guests are given paper bags to put their mask safely away.

Despite a few restrictions with limited hours and tables spaced far apart, the restaurants in Oaxaca are doing their best to serve their customers safely. 

We invite you to support them as much as you can so they can keep flourishing once the pandemic is behind us.

Have you visited any of these Oaxaca restaurants before? If not, please let us know in the comments below which ones you’d like to try.

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Pinterest 14 of the best Oaxaca Restaurants by AuthenticFoodQuest

30 Comments on “Authentic Oaxaca Restaurant Guide: Top 14 Restaurants You Want to Try in Oaxaca”

  1. @authenticfoodquest
    I love this article! I just booked my flights to visit OAX city in April, and I will be mapping out many of these restaurants.
    How do I eat at all of them in only 4 days?! Haha!

  2. Perfect but just a couple days ago another new restaurant opened. “Caléndula” you guys really has to come over. The chef cooks this delicious food from Sierra Juarez.

  3. They all look incredible. I never been to Oaxaca before and eating authentic food really is amazing. I’m excited to try these must try restaurants you suggest.

  4. It’s great to hear there are so many great restaurants there. It is good that the restaurants have made sure they have kept on top of safety.

  5. All of these places sound amazing. And that food looks scrumptious. I would love to visit here one day. I so enjoy trying new foods.


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