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Posted on Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 8 a.m.

Frugal Friday at La Casita Taqueria - hearty dishes won't break the bank

By Mary Bilyeu


Shrimp Quesadilla.

Mary Bilyeu, Contributor

Frugal Floozie Friday is a feature that seeks out dishes - appetizers, drinks, snacks, desserts, sandwiches, whatever - for $5 or less per person. Sometimes I split generously-sized items with loved ones, saving both money and calories; sometimes I find a great deal on a single serving that fits perfectly within the mandatory budget. I try to showcase several options to choose from, and you never know where I'll find them. Check out the column every Friday!

My friend and fellow contributor Peggy Lampman wrote to me awhile ago to let me know that "La Casita Taqueria has amazing value — I had a shrimp quesadilla for $2.50 that sent me to the moon."

Well, that was all the recommendation I needed. A trusted palate and a referral to a place that meets our mandatory Frugal Floozie Friday budget of $5 per person...? Off I went!


Gordita Al Pastor.

Mary Bilyeu | Contributor

So, of course, I ordered the shrimp quesadilla that had set Peggy's heart so a-flutter. A freshly fried, hot, crisp shell filled generously, it was very hearty all by itself, especially when paired with the chips and salsa basket that the waitress had brought to the table. To fill out the $5, I also ordered a gordita: a "Round Crispy Corn Tortilla Filled With ... Fresh Shredded Lettuce & Cheese." The Al Pastor — marinated roasted pork — cost $2.25. It was so much food that I actually had leftovers for the next day.

The tacos range in price from $1.69 (Al Pastor, Carne Asada, Carnitas, Chorizo, Lengua/Tongue, Chochinita/Pork) to $2 for Tripe. Pambazos — "Mexican Bun Filled With Your Choice of Meat & Drowned in Special Red Mild Sauce" — cost $4.50-$4.75, with fillings from chicken to pork to beef.

La Casita also offers breakfast, served with beans and rice, with platters costing $4.75 for eggs with a variety of accompaniments (chorizo, ham, vegetables). And you know dessert is always important! For $3.50, you can choose from Tres Leches Cake, Flan, and rice pudding.

For a wide variety of frugal and hearty options, La Casita Taqueria is a great find!


Mary Bilyeu | Contributor

La Casita Taqueria
2866 Washtenaw Ave.
Ypsilanti, MI 48197
Monday - Thursday: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Sunday: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

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Mary Bilyeu - a self-proclaimed Food Floozie (named for her blog, which is taking a summer vacation) - writes for on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, telling about her adventures in the kitchen. She is also on a mission to find great deals for her Frugal Floozie Friday posts, seeking fabulous food at restaurants on the limited budget of only $5 per person. Feel free to email her with questions, comments, or suggestions:

The phrase "You Should Only Be Happy" (written in Hebrew on the stone pictured in this post) comes from Deuteronomy 16:15 and is a wish for all her readers - when you come to visit here, may you always be happy.



Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 3:21 p.m.

Lots of reviews on Yelp. Mostly 4 and 5 star. Another place I need to try....and ironically, this deep fried palace is in the shadow of Planet Fitness.


Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 3:05 p.m.

Hearty and cheap. But was it GOOD?


Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 9:06 p.m.

Yes. The food is amazing. The quesadillas are awesome, and the tacos are the best I've had in the A2 area, hands down. Dos Hermanos is a close second taste-wise, but they only serve those, and it isn't really a restaurant.


Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 2:28 p.m.

We've been to this place 3 times over the last 4 months and while the food is good and it's cheap they absolutely have the worst waitress of any resturant around. 2 times it was apparently the owners wife and she was trying to bus tables, do carry outs and wait tables and then last month they had some young girl who couldn't stop texting on her cell phone long enough to take care of customers properly. Maybe get carry out here if you are close but avoid the dining room


Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 9:04 p.m.

Funny, we eat here at least once a month, and they're almost always on point with their service. I think I've only ever had a so-so experience once, and we've been there at least 30 times.


Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 1:05 p.m.

I love the tamales there, and they're also cheap enough to fit under your price cap. If you haven't tried them, you should.


Fri, Sep 6, 2013 : 9:08 p.m.

The amount of awesome food you can get for under $10-$15 there is astounding. Seating is a bit limited though. Hopefully they can get enough business to move up to a place with a better floorplan.