10 Best Restaurants to Visit for Authentic, Homestyle Food in Cancun

Some people might not consider Cancun to be the "real" Mexico, but the world-class vacation destination is also home to around 750,000 residents, most of whom are Mexican. Many come from other parts of the country to live and work in Cancun, and bring their traditions and their food with them.

Most might imagine, and hope, that their vacation would include long, leisurely gourmet dinners, and of course it should, but why not try some homestyle Mexican food as well? We're not talking nachos and hard-shell tacos, which is actually Tex-Mex food and more popular in the US and along the US-Mexico border, we're talking about authentic Mexican food.

Visitors can try homestyle Mexican food in small, rustic eateries like Tacun or restaurants Hacienda de Mortero in the Hotel Zone. In downtown Cancun La Parrilla and La Casa de los Abuelos both serve traditional Mexican food. If you are looking to try local seafood, El Galeon del Caribe (aka Las Pescadillas) and El Fish Fritanga in the Hotel Zone and El Cejas downtown in Market 28 all prepare the freshest traditional Mexican Caribbean-style seafood dishes. Cheester, a local favorite, has various locations in downtown Cancun and serves huge portions of homestyle pasta. Bovino's Churrascaria is Cancun's favorite place for Brazilian homestyle dishes.

Discover authentic Mexican flavors and more in Cancun's homestyle restaurants.

El Galeon del Caribe (Las Pescadillas)
Photo courtesy of Myrna Carrillo - Myrnation

El Galeon del Caribe aka Las Pescadillas, is a rustic (to say the least) hidden treasure in Cancun's Hotel Zone. Tucked in between the mangroves on Nichupte Lagoon at km 19.4 of Kukulcan Boulevard (across the street from the GR Solaris Cancun)...  Read More

La Troje (The Shed) is tucked in a upscale neighborhood near Plaza Las Americas in downtown Cancun. The restaurant has a sidewalk cafe feeling and they serve delicious salads, pasta, crepes, baguettes, pizza, fondues, beer and wine...so it's a...  Read More

In case you haven't heard, Brazil is known for its delicious steak. At Bovino (cow) Churrascaria (churrasco loosely translates to barbeque) delicious, high quality cuts of meat (baby beef, arrachera , Brazilian chorizo, pork ribs, Rio filet,...  Read More

This casual seafood restaurant is located smack in the middle of the Hotel Zone but it's a local favorite. El Fish Fritanga's restaurant is open daily from 11 am to 11 pm but their taco stand is open from 7 am until 1 am. This is a great spot...  Read More

When you're in Cancun, it's easy to get caught up in the festive atmosphere and maybe overdo it a little. If you find yourself in this scenario, then pull it together and head to El Cejas for lunch and their renowned cocktail, Vuelva La Vida...  Read More

If you're in the mood for an authentic Mexican fiesta, complete with live mariachi music, Hacienda el Mortero is waiting for you right on the edge of Cancun's Party Zone at Km. 9 of Boulevard Kulkukan in the Hotel Zone. There's also a magician...  Read More

Cheester is one of Cancun's most popular restaurants despite the fact that they don't take reservations and they don't deliver. What they do however, is serve delicious pasta, pizza, salads, crepes and breakfasts at a very reasonable price....  Read More

Hotel Zone

This is real Mexican food at a great price. Tacun is located across the street from Plaza Flamingo on the ocean side of the street at km 11.5 in the Hotel Zone. This is the type of authentic, economical food you would normally only find in...  Read More

La Casa de Los Abuelos
Photo courtesy of Kristin Busse

La Casa de Los Abuelos (The Grandparents' House) is a Mexican family restaurant and bakery. They have six locations, three of which are in Cancun. The idea here is that the food is traditional Mexican fare, something your abuelos (grandparents)...  Read More

When visitors and locals go in search of a festive Mexican meal, they usually end up at La Parrilla. The restaurant features a large salon and terrace, festive colors and fountains, and those wanting a little variety can order a margarita mixed...  Read More


Meet Kristin Busse

After vacationing in Mexico many times, Kristin decided to move to Cancun "for a year". That was in 2001.

Kristin grew-up in Michigan and studied Communications at Michigan State University....  More About Kristin