Taco Town: 10 awesome spots to find tacos in West Michigan

The taco has gained increasing popularity as of late; no longer mere street food option, it's now a ubiquitous nosh in no-frills and trendy dining locales alike.

When it comes to tacos, where does the value lie? Overall, authenticity trumps ambiance. It's less about the place you find yourself eating one, much more about the reliably tasty combination of crunch, spice and flavor delighting your taste buds. A taco should be simple, with just the right amount of sass.

So where to head when a craving hits? We've sourced ten awesome spots for you. Read on.

There's plenty to like at El Arriero, starting with just-crispy-enough tortilla chips and ultra-creamy guacamole. Tacos come a la carte, in salads or in platters alongside burritos, enchiladas, tostadas and more. Go there for: the Fajita Taco Salad.

2948 28th St. SE, Kentwood

Less than $20

You may have driven by its Grandville Avenue location, marked by a festive multi-colored stand. In September, Tacos El Cunado arrived at the Downtown Market to a glowing response. Go there for: Emily's Taco Trio.

435 Ionia Ave SW, Grand Rapids

Less than $10

A promising sign you've stumbled upon authentic Mexican cuisine? When there's a Mexican grocery store adjoining the restaurant. Taqueria Azteca offers little fanfare; they know it's more about the food than the décor. Go there for: the Carne Asada Tacos.

2027 N Park Dr., Holland

Less than $20

A recent addition to Wealthy Street, Donkey Taqueria signals the expansion of What the Truck, a food truck offering fusion tacos, enhancing a growing culinary scene in this area of town. Go there for: Tacos de Queso Acadero.

665 Wealthy St., Grand Rapids

Less than $10

A hidden gem, Mi Favorita serves its food out of a kitchen in the rear of a grocery store. Their daily specials will fill you up nicely, and for next to nothing. Go there for: Tacos de Barbacoa.

408 Columbia Ave., Holland

Less than $10

Well-loved for its amply seasoned tacos—plenty of cilantro, lime and onion—this place serves up affordable fare, especially if you've got an appetite. Twelve tacos go for $10. Also go there for: the Taco Salad.

305 N Beacon Blvd., Grand Haven

Less than $10

The extensive menu here makes decision-making a feat. Go there for: the Mahi Mahi Tacos—blackened fish, red cabbage, Monterrey Jack and Colby cheeses stuffed into three soft shell tacos. Chipotle tartar sauce gives this dish a nice kick.

2770 East Paris Ave. SE, Grand Rapids

Less than $20

At $1.75-$2.00 each, the tacos at La Taqueria San Jose definitely give you a bang for your buck. You'll be satiated after two (or three). Go there for: Al Pastor tacos.

1338 S Division Ave., Grand Rapids

Less than $10

Mark your calendar for the first Tuesday of the month, when you can swing by La Mexicana Market for 50-cent tacos of one kind. Bite-sized snacks wrapped in homemade tortillas. Mmm. Go there for: the Chorizo Tacos.

1956 Portage St., Kalamazoo

Less than $10

At Margarita's, you can get three generously filled tacos for less than $10, from beef tongue to juicy shredded chicken. Go there for: the taco bar, for a DIY meal and toppings galore.

495 W 17th St., Holland

Less than $15