Whittier: Arturo’s Puffy Tacos

A week ago, I tweeted I was craving “Gringo” style tacos for Taco Tuesday. One of my followers asked if I ever tried Arturo’s Puffy Taco (or simply Puffy Taco) in Whittier. I replied that I had not, and was going to save it for the next “taco Tuesday”.

Tuesday didn’t come fast enough. Last Saturday, I was in nearby La Habra dropping off my dog to the groomer, and this place was only 10 minutes away. It was early (10:00 am) but never too early for a taco!

We arrived about 10:15, and the place was still dormant. One sign in the window said “open” and the sign at the dining room said “closed”. We walked up and they were open, and since it wasn’t busy the guy (I think it’s Arturo?) chatted us up about the food, and what’s popular.

The family is originally from San Antonio, Texas, and he brought the family recipe over to start this restaurant. The ground beef (or the original Puffy) is the most popular, and partially because it’s cheaper than the other tacos. It has ground beef, potato, green chilies and other spices, topped with shredded lettuce, cheddar cheese and taco salsa.

We ordered the original Puffy, and the other 4 Puffy tacos:

  • Chicken,
  • Carnitas (pork),
  • Asada (steak),
  • and the Carne Guizada, which is like a beef stew. Unlike the other meats, which is served dry this one is gravy like. Of the 5 tacos, the Guisada was my favorite, which I could have eaten 5 of those just by myself.

The prices are not dirt cheap, but runs about $2.60 a per taco on the average. $18 for 5 tacos and 2 medium drinks. They’re messy, and yes, they are puffy. You can’t let the tacos sit too long or they will get soggy, and you will need the fork to scoop up the ingredients that falls out of the puffy shell.

The restaurant also serves puffy tostadas and other “Tex-Mex” favorites. No free drink refills here, so go large, or expect to pay up to $0.75 for a refill. Oh yes, and it’s Cash Only. If you forget cash, there’s an ATM in the dining room.

I heard this place gets busy crowded, so get here early.  Closed on Sundays.

Arturo's Puffy Taco Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato