The Midland-Odessa Taco Trail

February 22, 2023
El Taco Tako in Odessa.

By José R. Ralat

West Texas’s reputation as the land of crunchy tacos, kitchen-sink burritos, and bulky combo platters is well-earned. These are the high-calorie foods of the hardworking folks of the oil patch. The region’s sister cities, Midland and Odessa, offer them aplenty. However, Midland surprises with a vibrant taco truck scene, with many of the trucks parked on and around Big Spring Street.

El Taco Tako
This cash-only, counter-order joint is worn around the edges, with faded, hand-painted signage. The tortillas are fresh, though, and they’re best in the form of burritos packed with guisos, such as chile relleno, green chile pork, and barbacoa, as well as with all manner of breakfast options. 718 W. Clements, Odessa, 432-333-5731.

Elva’s Taco Casa
Another aged joint—this one established by owner Elva Porras nearly forty years ago—is also decorated with hand-painted signage. The cursive “Elva’s” is a touch of flourish for an otherwise no-fuss place. The menu is small, consisting of little more than tacos, burritos, and quesadillas. The tacos feature freshly fried corn tortillas cradling lightly seasoned shredded beef or chicken and generous portions of lettuce and tomatoes. 807 Royalty Avenue, Odessa, 432-333-2831.

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