29 places in Chico to buy a taco for $2 or less

No matter where you are, an inexpensive taco is near

For all you hungry, budget-minded students out there, do not fear. You need not be relegated to a diet of ramen and $5 pizzas—not in Chico, anyway. Here, you'll have access to authentic tacos for $2 or less no matter what neighborhood you find yourself in. And for those new town, here's a handy map showing all the taco trucks and taquerias we know of (family-style restaurants and fast-food chains not included) whose tacos do not break the $2 barrier. Plus, CN&R editors share some of our favorite spots. Note: Trucks are mobile by nature, so locations may change—though most stay put year-round.

1. Tacos Puerto Vallarta

2. Tacos Super Tonaya

3. Taqueria Ramirez

4. Tacos el Tapatio

5. Gordo Burrito (1)

6. Aca Taco Nord

7. Bulldog Taqueria

★ 8. Fiesta Taco

The key to this truck, in the Star Liquor parking lot, is to go on Taco Tuesday, when the double-decker tacos—a hard shell inside a soft shell—are three for $5.50. They don't skimp on the meat here, and shrimp doesn't cost you extra. Our pick is the carnitas, though—so good they're known to run out before day's end. No worries, the carne asada is a close second.

9. Tacos Ramirez

★ 10. Tacos el Paisa

Tacos El Paisa offers just three varieties of its eponymous entree—pollo, al pastor and carne asada—but the flavors cooked into each one are as rich and robust as the selections are simple. And, for just $1 apiece, you might as well grab two or three of each kind to find your favorite.

11. Tacos Tonaya #2

★ 12. Tacos Pepe

The taco machine, an outdoor grill serving up maybe the most succulent taco meats in Chico, is fired up four nights a week—Tuesdays and Friday through Sunday—with $1 tacos on special during the Tuesday and Sunday sessions.

13. Cocina Cortes

14. Aca Taco Downtown

15. Amigos de Acapulco

16. La Cocina Economica

17. Gordo Burrito (2)

★ 18. Crazy Taco

This longtime Chico favorite is literally a hole cut in the outside wall of Duke's Cork-N'-Bottle Shop. Crazy Taco's carnitas— fat-rendered bits of pork, crisped to serve—and al pastor tacos will drive you insane with cravings.

19. Tacos Tijuana

20. Tacos Cortez

21. Aztlan Mexican Food

22. Gordo Burrito (3)

23. El Rey Mexican Grill

★ 24. Tacos el Pinolero (1)

With trucks on the north and south ends of town, El Pinolero is always near. The menu is diverse, but its standout fare includes the perfectly prepared carnitas (refried pork) tacos topped with onions and cilantro. What makes the little pork nuggets even tastier is the sauce, a red concoction that has just the right amount of spice.

25. Tacos el Grullense

26. Taqueria los Amigos

★ 27. Tacos el Pinolero (2)

See No. 24.

28. Mi Taquito Grill

29. The Taco Truck