If you’re looking for a great burrito in Berkeley you have better options than the Chipotle on Telegraph. The Bay Area is home to some fantastic Mexican restaurants and you don’t need to travel all the way over to San Francisco to try them.
Fresh local ingredients, large portions, and amazing flavors await you at the spots you’ll find on this list.
La Burrita has been a reliable spot for a good burrito on both the North and South sides of campus for generations of students. Their proximity to Cal and the dorms means they’re always a good nearby choice. Their burritos are awesome but their unique cheese steak burrito is in a world of its own. They also take orders by phone so call ahead and your burrito will be ready by the time you get there.
If you like big burritos that can keep you full for few days then you need to try out Gordo. It’s the best big burrito near campus. They’ve earned a spot on this list as a top student option. They’re in a great spot for grabbing a bite to eat between classes (they can have a long line but they work fast), and their burritos are big enough to serve as a lunch and dinner option (if you’re trying to save some money). Be sure to get their beef since it’s definitely the best meat they serve.
La Mission is regarded by many as the best burrito spot in Berkeley. While that’s up for you to decide, there’s no debate that their burritos are amazing and worth the trek down University avenue. They know how to get the right mix of meat, cheese, rice, and beans so that you don’t end up with one dominating flavor in each bite. You can’t lose when you go with their carnitas, pollo, or carne asada. If you love San Francisco’s burrito scene then this is the closest you’ll probably get to it in Berkeley.
Cancun’s super burritos surpass their peers in the city with their local ingredients and their juicy meats. A bit of an upscale burrito spot but with prices a student can afford. If you like salsa with your burrito this is the place for you. Their salsa bar is legendary and spans all levels of tastes from mild to extremely spicy. Their carne asada should be in every burrito and their salsa verde is so crisp it’s refreshing. They also make some of the best nachos in town.
It’s a bit far from campus but you absolutely need to make time for Juan’s if you love gigantic burritos. Every dish in this place is massive (and hot) and you’ll almost always leave with leftovers for the next day. They’ve mastered the art of making a burrito with tons of cheese without completely drowning the thing and turning it into a thick greasy mess. All of their meats are cooked to just melt in your mouth. Also, don’t miss out on their flour chips. They are like nothing you’ve ever tried before.
If you’ve never tried a California burrito (or are looking for one) you have to hit up El Burro Picante for theirs. Good fries are a key part of a perfect California burrito and they do them well here. For an added treat you can try out their carne asada fries as well. Like Cancun, they also have a nice selection of salsas (Cancun’s are superior but this is another option worth trying).
Celia’s near Cal’s North gate is where to go if you’re looking for value. Their portions are extremely generous and often big enough to split with a friend (probably the closest spot to Juan’s in terms of portions). The chicken is what you should get and the free chips are a nice plus if you like having something crispy with your burrito.
Hopefully, after checking out some of these spots you’ll see Berkeley burritos in a whole new light. It really is a great city for some even greater Mexican dishes.
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