Dip Into the Top 5 Guacamole in L.A.

Made-to-order guacamole at Bar Amá | Instagram by @bar_ama

There’s no shortage of great guacamole in Los Angeles, a city blessed to contain some of the best Mexican food on the planet, in a state that grows a fair percentage of the world’s avocados. This most perfect snack (and the most-consumed item on Super Bowl Day) has ancient roots, as avocados have been cultivated in Central America for thousands of years and there’s record of the fruit being smashed together with other ingredients in a molcajete by the Aztecs. People might disagree about what other ingredients are necessary - onions? Garlic? Tomatoes? Lemon? - but everyone knows that at its base, guacamole is one of the world’s best dishes. Here are five restaurants in L.A. County doing excellent renditions of it.

Made-to-order guacamole at Bar Amá | Instagram by @bar_ama

Bar Amá

Los Angeles is so lucky that Josef Centeno moved here. The chef is making an impact on the way we eat, sending waves out from the Downtown L.A. intersection where he runs several restaurants. One of those is Bar Amá, an upscale Tex-Mex place that pays homage to his hometown and his heritage. Centeno's made-to-order guacamole has serranos, cilantro, lime, kosher salt, garlic, a little water to thin it out, and … celery. Hey, crunchiness is good!

Smoked bacon guacamole at Cascabel | Instagram by @nicolesfoodblog


Cascabel is a lovely little Toluca Lake restaurant that doesn’t get much attention, as it’s behind a dentist’s office and practically under the 134 freeway. But it’s a very nice space with great food. There are currently two types of guacamole on the menu: “original,” with lime, onions, tomatoes, cilantro, salt, and the non-traditional addition of olive oil; the second option goes even more unorthodox by adding a bunch of smoked bacon to the mix. This is enough for an entire meal by itself, but of course you’ll want chips.

Taquitos with guacamole at El Tepeyac Cafe
Two taquitos with guacamole | Photo: El Tepeyac Cafe

El Tepeyac Cafe

The same family has been serving outlandishly large burritos (there’s one that weighs five pounds) at El Tepeyac in Boyle Heights since 1952. And with enormous burritos come huge portions of guacamole. You might even consider ordering one of the more reasonably-sized entrees, the better to get more of that guac down your gullet.

Guacamole Molcajete Style at El Cholo | Instagram by @thianjong

El Cholo Los Angeles - The Original

The first location of this small chain opened in 1923, back when Mexican restaurants were called "Spanish." As a population, we’ve learned a lot since then. But the guacamole remains the same. El Cholo prepares it tableside, so it’s customizable, but the classic set-up includes habanero sauce, minced mild pepper, chopped jalapenos, cilantro, red onion, green onion, tomatoes, lemon, and salt and pepper. It’s busy, but bright and fresh-tasting.

Guacamole at Rocio's Mexican Kitchen | Photo by Angie Z, Yelp

Rocio’s Mexican Kitchen

Rocio Camacho is known for her moles, but she does pretty much everything quite well. The Oaxacan-born chef (Los Angeles loves Oaxacan food) is quite influential, and there’s something she adds to her guacamole that we see a lot of around town: pepitas, a kind of squash seed. Perhaps it’s too hard to tell which restaurant did it first, but we do know all of L.A.’s chefs eat Camacho’s food.