National Taco Day

Next Friday, 4 October 2024

National Taco Day is celebrated on  October 4th  to honor one of the favorite foods of the nation. Tortillas can be filled with anything you want, from beef and chicken to fish, to vegetables is for everyone.

Hence, no wonder they are such a crowd-pleaser. The best thing about this day is that most taco restaurants will have special National Taco Day deals, so you can go enjoy this delicious traditional Mexican dish for a discounted price. 

A person holding a wooden board with 9 tacos on it, colorful and covered in fresh herbs

Background of National Taco Day

This holiday was founded in San Antonio, Texas, the birthplace of the American love for Mexican food. It was created by Roberto L. Gomez, a city council candidate, and columnist for the local newspaper. Gomez and the San Antonio Social Civic Organization began a tradition of sending traditional Mexican dishes, such as tamales and tacos, to the White House, to remind US presidents of the political power of Mexicans in America. 

This tradition paved the way for the founding of the National Taco Council, an organization whose aim was to promote Mexican culture and restaurants in Texas. Thus, the week before Cinco de Mayo was designated in San Antonio as National Taco Week, in 1967. In 1968 National Taco Week was designated as lasting from April 28 to May 4, with the original National Taco Day falling on May 3. Gomez intended for the taco to be as popular in the United States as the hamburger and the hot dog. Mexican food chains quickly adopted this holiday and began doing special National Taco Day deals to attract more customers to try tacos. 

In 1974, the holiday was expanded to National Taco Month, promoted by a few large companies, such as Kraft Foods and Pearl Brewing. After Gomez died in 1983, National Taco Day, Week, and Month seemingly disappeared from history. 

It wasn't until 1989 that the food chain Taco Bell revived the holiday, and reinstated National Taco Month. 

The current date for National Taco Day was introduced in 2004, and the day started gaining popularity again in 2009, after a Del Taco campaign to celebrate National Taco Day. The day has kept growing until today, with more chains and restaurants joining in on the fun. 

History of tacos

The history of tacos goes back centuries and has a rich and diverse origin in the culinary traditions of Mexico.

Tacos are said to have their roots in pre-Columbian times among the indigenous people of the Valley of Mexico.

The word "taco" is derived from the Nahuatl language, spoken by the Aztecs and other indigenous groups in the region.

The oldest version of the taco is said to be made of a thin, flat corn tortilla filled with small fish, and the creation dates back to the 16th century.

The native people of the area used tortillas as a convenient way to wrap and carry food.

After the arrival of the Spanish conquerors in Mexico during the 1500s, the native cuisine was adopted and made into several different versions. New ingredients like pork, chicken, and beef combined with different spices, herbs, and marinades were introduced. 

The evolution of tacos continued through the centuries, with various regions of Mexico developing their distinctive styles and fillings.

For instance, the Baja California region is famous for its fish tacos, where grilled or battered fish is wrapped in a tortilla and served with various toppings like cabbage, crema, and salsa.

As Mexico's culinary influence spread globally, tacos started gaining popularity beyond its borders.

In the United States, Mexican immigrants brought their culinary heritage with them, and tacos became increasingly popular in the southwestern states and later throughout the entire country.

The rise of fast-food chains specializing in tacos, like Taco Bell, further contributed to their widespread popularity in the US and other parts of the world.

Today, tacos have become a staple in many international cuisines, with countless variations and fillings to suit different tastes.

From traditional street vendors in Mexico to upscale gourmet restaurants worldwide, tacos remain a beloved and versatile dish enjoyed by people of all backgrounds.

Their humble origins and centuries-long journey make them an essential part of Mexican cultural heritage and a delicious symbol of cross-cultural culinary exchange.

How to celebrate National Taco Day

As mentioned, many chains participate in National Taco Day and offer amazing deals. In some places, such as Taco Bell, you can even get a free taco! So look up restaurants around you that may be offering deals on this holiday, visit your favorite one, or take the opportunity to try a new taco place. 

If you prefer cooking yourself, have friends over and host a taco party! There are many recipes for corn tortillas on the internet, and you can make as many fillings as you like to please everyone or stick with the traditional carne asada, tomato, cheese, and lettuce. tomato, cheese, and lettuce.

Top 6 Popular Tacos Today

  • Carne Asada Tacos: Juicy grilled beef, marinated to perfection with lime and spices, complemented by refreshing toppings of onions, cilantro, and a zesty squeeze of lime.

  • Al Pastor Tacos: Mouthwatering, thinly sliced ​​marinated pork, cooked on a vertical rotisserie, combined with sweet pineapple, onions, cilantro, and a touch of salsa for a flavorful fusion.

  • Carnitas Tacos: Tender and crispy slow-cooked pork, lovingly shredded and nestled in tortillas, served with a vibrant mix of salsa, guacamole, and diced onions.

  • Fish Tacos: Crispy fried fish, a taste of the sea wrapped in a tortilla, paired with fresh shredded cabbage, creamy sauces, and optional salsa for a coastal delight.

  • Barbacoa Tacos: Slow-cooked and succulent beef, lamb, or goat, pulled apart and tucked into tortillas, enhanced with the freshness of diced onions, cilantro, and salsas bursting with flavor.

  • Birria tacos: A mouthwatering delight, featuring tender and flavorful meat wrapped in tortillas, served with consommé for a delicious dipping experience

National Taco Day
National Taco Day

National Taco Day - Next years

Saturday, 04 October 2025

Sunday, 04 October 2026

Monday, 04 October 2027

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