Taco lovers rejoice! National Taco Day is coming up on October 4th, bringing with it a plethora of free tacos, discounts, and specials from all your favorite taco chains and restaurants. This year, you can look forward to indulging in everything from free fish tacos to BOGO deals on beef tacos.
National Taco Day only comes once a year, so you’ll want to take full advantage of these mouthwatering promotions. Whether you prefer hard or soft shell, chicken or steak, you’ll find an array of flavors to enjoy from coast to coast.
When and How Did National Taco Day Start?
National Taco Day has been celebrated on October 4th ever since the day was first registered with the National Day Calendar in 2009. The tasty holiday was likely created by the taco industry itself to promote the popular Mexican food.
Tacos have been a beloved staple of Mexican cuisine since the 18th century. The word “taco” comes from the Spanish word “taco” meaning “light lunch.” Traditional tacos were made with small corn or wheat tortillas stuffed with meat, vegetables, and salsa.
Today, Americans eat over 4.5 billion tacos every year. National Taco Day gives us all an excuse to enjoy our favorite Mexican food. So get ready to stuff your face with freebies and special discounts!
The Best National Taco Day Freebies and Deals
This National Taco Day, indulge in deals from the most popular taco chains and Mexican restaurants across the country. Here are all the details on scoring free tacos and maximizing your taco savings this October 4th:
Taco Bell — Taco Lover’s Pass
Taco Bell is bringing back their popular Taco Lover’s Pass just in time for National Taco Day. Rewards members can buy the pass in the app on October 3rd and 4th for only $10. The pass lets you redeem one free taco daily for 30 consecutive days from a selection of 8 crunchy and soft tacos.
On October 3rd, Taco Bell will also offer 100 free Taco Lover’s Passes on their in-app Tuesday Drops page. This ultra-discounted pass will go fast, so download the app and be ready to claim yours!
El Torito — Free Street Taco Trio
For dine-in customers, El Torito is offering their Street Taco Trio for free with any entrée purchase of equal or greater value. You can choose from carne asada, shredded chicken, or beer-battered fish tacos.
El Torito will also have $6 signature margaritas, $4 draft beers, and discounted house wine from 3pm to 7pm on National Taco Day.
California Tortilla — Free Taco Coupon
Swing by a California Tortilla location and receive a coupon for one free taco with any in-store purchase on October 4th. Options include adobo chicken, steak, and California ranch tacos on fresh tortillas.
The free taco coupon can be redeemed from October 5th through 11th, while supplies last.
Jack in the Box — BOGO Monster Tacos
Jack in the Box is celebrating National Taco Day with a monster of a deal. Get two Monster Tacos or their new Angry Monster Tacos for the price of one at only 99 cents through their mobile app.
Rubio’s Coastal Grill — Free Taco with Purchase
Every Rubio’s location is giving away one free à la carte taco with any purchase on National Taco Day. Choose from beer battered fish, shrimp, Mahi, or chicken tacos.
Use the promo code “TACO” when ordering online or through the app to redeem your free taco.
Moe’s Southwest Grill — Free Eggo Taco
For this year’s National Taco Day, Moe’s has teamed up with Eggo to offer a free Eggo Taco with any purchase. This creative taco features a waffle wrapped taco shell stuffed with eggs, cheese, and your choice of bacon or sausage.
The Eggo Taco will be available on October 4th only from 10:30am at participating Moe’s locations in Atlanta, North Jersey, Long Island, and South Florida.
Fuzzy’s Taco Shop — Free Tacos for Rewards Members
Fuzzy’s Taco Shop is treating their loyalty members to two free tacos on October 4th. Choices include street tacos, breakfast tacos, and their Baja-style fish tacos.
All customers can also enjoy $1.50 select tacos at Fuzzy’s throughout National Taco Day. Sign up for their rewards program by October 3rd to redeem your free tacos.
Chevys Fresh Mex — Free Taco Plate
Chevys Fresh Mex is giving away a free plate of their famous tacos with the purchase of any entrée of equal or greater value. Top your tacos with your choice of meat, cheese, lettuce, pico de gallo, and salsa.
Margaritas, draft beers, and house wine will also be discounted from 3pm to 7pm for National Taco Day celebrations at Chevys.
Bubbakoo’s Burritos — Free Tacos for a Year
Bubbakoo’s Burritos is giving away the ultimate National Taco Day prize — free taco trio entrees for an entire year! Fifteen lucky winners will be chosen by liking, commenting on, and sharing Bubbakoo’s posts on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Facebook and Ello throughout the week leading up to the holiday.
Taco Bueno — BOGO Party Tacos
Taco Bueno is running an unbeatable National Taco Day special for loyalty members. Get unlimited buy-one-get-one free Party Tacos all day on October 4th! Flash the offer code to redeem at participating locations.
The History and Varieties of Tacos
Tacos are an iconic food that represent the colors, flavors, and textures of Mexican cuisine. Understanding their history and different styles can help you better appreciate these tasty treats.
Origins of the Taco
The taco predates Spanish colonization of Mexico. Indigenous peoples of Mexico likely ate tacos made from small corn tortillas at least as far back as the 8th century CE. When Spanish colonizers arrived, they introduced beef, pork, and wheat flour tortillas which transformed the taco.
The word “taco” first appeared in Spanish dictionaries in the late 18th century. By the 19th century, taquerias selling tacos were commonplace in Mexico City. Immigrants spread taco culture to the US Southwest in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Types of Taco Shells
The foundation of every taco is the tortilla shell. Here are some key types:
- Corn tortillas — The traditional option, thick or thin corn tortillas have a hefty corn flavor.
- Flour tortillas — Large, pliable wheat flour tortillas are great for burrito-style tacos.
- Crispy shells — Deep-fried corn or flour tortillas make crunchy U-shaped taco shells.
- Soft shells — Plump, soft taco “shells” are made from two overlapping corn or flour tortillas.
While grilled meats were originally used, today’s taco fillings are endless!
- Pastor — Spicy marinated pork is an iconic taco protein.
- Carne asada — Grilled, chopped steak is a Tijuana taco favorite.
- Carnitas — Braised, tender pulled pork fills these mouthwatering tacos.
- Pollo — Chicken is a lean, mild taco filling option.
- Chorizo — Spicy Mexican sausage adds major flavor.
- Pescado — Grilled or fried white fish, like tilapia, is light yet satisfying.
- Camarones — Plump, juicy shrimp make for delicious tacos.
- Vegetales — Grilled veggies, like zucchini, peppers, mushrooms, and onions, make tasty veggie tacos.
With countless combinations, there is an ideal taco out there for everyone. This National Taco Day, don’t miss out on the variety of free and discounted tacos available nationwide. Celebrate the delicious holiday like a true taco aficionado by understanding the history and different styles that make tacos an iconic comfort food. Then get out there and enjoy the deals!