Puffy tacos have Texan roots but were first introduced in Southern California

ByJose Mayorquin Localish logo
Monday, November 13, 2023
Texas-style Puffy tacos were first introduced in Southern California
Puffy tacos may be popular in Texas, but the crunchy Tex-Mex taco was first introduced in Southern California.

WHITTIER, Calif. -- Many Texans rave about the puffy taco, a crunchy taco with a puffed up shell, but few know that this popular style of taco was first introduced by San Antonio transplants living in Southern California.

"We had the name trademarked, 'Puffy Taco'," said Gloria Lopez, co-founder of Arturo's Puffy Taco in Whittier, California. "My husband's grandmother started making them at home and that's where they got the idea.

Arturo Lopez, the original owner who has passed away, shared the concept with this two brothers who ran with it in businesses of their own in San Antonio.

"My dad had a restaurant without a menu. He was the talking menu. He told everyone just give them that CV, 'puffy taco, puffy taco,' and little by little, word of mouth every day, it just keeps getting bigger and bigger," said John Lopez co-owner.

"A lot of people, they can't believe the taste," said Gloria. "And people, they're surprised that we're from Texas and hadn't heard of us, especially the Texans."