HOME > Chowhound > Texas >


Where are the best authentic tamales in Houston

  • t

I would love some REALLY good pork tamales to have during the Christmas season. Some that are tasty but not too greasy. We used to have a woman who came to the hospital where I work to sell them, but I have not seen her in months.

I have seen ads for Alamo Tamale. Anybody eat them before?


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Alamo Tamales are good. you just need to get the home made ones, not the cpeap ones they sell.

    Alos Robb walsh reviewed a place on the west side of town last year about this time that are supposed to be great. I have had several people tell me that they went to that place last year after the review.

    1 Reply
    1. re: John Scar

      Tamales Dona Tere was the place mentioned by Robb.

    2. Alamo Tamale & Taco, I had the same question about that place before. My friend's boyfriend has been there often and he said he loves it & it's great. The location he went to is on the Northside. Alamo Tamale & Taco: 809 Berry Rd/Houston, TX 77022 (713/692-6363). It's around Airline I believe, but I hear it's a hometown business. I also so saw it on the local news here in Houston one time. Good luck!!!
      Plus there are some churches that make tamales and sale them around this time of year. My coworker's Mother's church does this.

      1. People come from miles around (Spring,Katy, etc.)to pick up tamales from the "Tamale Man" on FM 2351 in Friendswood. He's being selling tamales at that location since 1976. He sells them from a truck that is parked there usually from about 10:00 a.m until about 7-7:30 p.m. Believe closed on Sunday.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Chris

          I like the tamale guy on 2351, his chili con queso is really good as well.

          1. re: jscarbor

            Husband had these last weekend and said they were pretty good. They are of the tex-mex variety with tend to be smaller then I'm use to.

        2. I don't know if any of you have eaten Tejano Salsa...I love the stuff. It's the one that uses heat ratings of "Texan Wannabe" (mild) up to "Native Texan" (hot). Well, it's made on Westpark, just east of Gessner.

          Anyways, I've noticed over the last couple months that they now advertise tamales.

          From their website (www.tejanosalsa.com):

          "New Product September 2004!!
          Tamales Henry's Way!
          Chicken, Pork or Beef Tamales
          Call 713.781.2370 and place your order.
          Pick up at our State-Approved commercial kitchen."

          Somebody try 'em and let me know! I would volunteer, but my wife has promised to kill me the next time I bring tamales home!!!

          1 Reply
          1. re: Jesse James

            I live across the street from the Tejano Salsa owners, so I got to be a "taste tester" for the tamales before they went to market.

            They're very good, and taste a lot like my mom's tamales, which is highest praise for a tamal! Don't expect any strange flavors or spices in these--they're straight up, Tex-Mex tamales. They're also handmade, which means that they don't have that weird, extruded texture that a lot of store-bought tamales have. I really appreciate that.

            If you don't want to buy them direct from the kitchen, try Spec's. They're supposed to be selling them, now.

          2. please you find out let me know too. i use to have a guy but i have not seem in months either but i can tell you don't go to berry hill to eat tamales there. lets just say not fit for my dog

            1. Ok, just hit the jackpot! Pete's Fine Meats (in HOuston off Richmond near Chimney Rock) is suppose to have KILLER tamales! Just spoke to a guy named Tre and he says they have plenty in stock! Check out this link, http://www.b4-u-eat.com/houston/resta...

              My Mom is on her way now to pick up some tamales for tomorrow! They are open tomorrow until 2pm!! They also sell Kobe Beef Ribeyes!! YUM! Good luck!

              1 Reply
              1. re: flantastic

                Pete's is an awesome butcher shop. You might head over there looking for tameles, but be warned, you're likely to leave with a light wallet but carrying a whole uncut, dry aged prime strip steak.

              2. i just bought 10 dozen of the handrolled pork tamales from alamo on berry rd for a superbowl party. these are hands down the best in houston!

                1. I think that Dona Tere beats Alamo hands down.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: jscarbor

                    Having never been to Alamo I really can't comment, but Dona Tere are the closest thing to my mexican grandmother's tamales.

                  2. do you have any recommendations for conroe/spring area? New to the area and am looking for authentic mexican and tamles, any help would be greatly appreciated

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: hat0565

                      Taco Milagro in The Woodlands claims their chicken or shrimp tamales are 'made here.' Gringo's on Cypresswood claims their pork tamales are 'home-made.' Both these are multi-location, locally based, I think, the latter is family, i.e., child friendly. Can't comment on the food; most restaurants serve pre-made tamales. Alamo has a location on Berry Rd., just off the Hardy Toll Road (Tidwell exit) that would at least be closer to you than the one on Navigation.

                      Re: Don Tere - I've tried it a couple of times. Mexico City style? Good, huge, different, but too much masa vs. filling for me. In most comparisons, Mex-Mex trumps Tex-Mex for me but I'll stick to the good old fashioned, steaming, hand-made Tex-Mex tamales a la Alamo.

                      1. re: brucesw

                        My family is from the Mexico City area. Growing up at all our family gatherings we would make tamales so I base all my knowledge on tamales from those gatherings.

                        There should not be so much masa that it overwells the filling. I notice in allot of restaurants that serve the mex-mex tamales they usually have allot more masa. I can only guess that it's because of cost. Which is really too bad. I would gladly pay for a good homemade tamale like my grandmother's.

                    2. Well I don't know if this is the best thread to tack this on to but here goes. Since we are in Houston, with it's huge diversity of cuisines, we have to consider other than the Tex-Mex tamales and here are a couple more I've found in my search of SW Houston chow places:

                      The masa in Salvadoran tamales has an almost gelatinous texture and are cooked in plantain leaves. The gelatinous appearance can be a little off-putting at first, at least it was for me. Some very good ones are available at El Cuscatleco, a pupuseria with a location listed on b4-u-eat on Bissonnet at Rampart, I think. There is a second location out in the 12700 or 12800 block of Bellaire that I've been to that isn't listed on b4. I've only been to 4 pupuserias and this was my favorite until recently and I still like it because they are very generous with the fillings of their tamals, pupusas and pasteles, unlike a couple of the other pupuserias where the fillings are pretty skimpy.

                      A new place I've found that does awesome Salvadoran style tamales is La Roca, on Bissonnet just west of Hillcroft, across from Bayland Park, a tamaleria-pupuseria-panaderia-taqueria. The food here is outstanding; I'm going to be doing a full review soon, after another visit or 2 to try to get some good pics. They have only 2 types of tamales, chicken or pork. Both also include potatoes in the filling (as does El Cuscatleco). Their masa is positively creamy, like really good mashed potatoes, and quite addictive. I've had some tamales there which were kind of skimpy on the fillings but others that were loaded. These may trump my overall favorites from Alamo, I don't know (haven't been there in quite some time). You can have sit-down service but you can also get hot tamales (and other items) from the steam table next to the cash register for a quick in-and-out snack, only they are very, very moist and you'll need napkins and an eating utensil -- can't pick these up and eat them out of hand.

                      I also commented on the Guatemalan style tamales at Lo Nuestro in this thread: