Tacos Vs Burgers: Do You Know These Differences?

tacos vs burgers

People, who are not so into Mexican culinary culture, sometimes mistake tacos for burgers. Yet, these two dishes, though both are popular fast food, differ in several critical aspects. Check out the key differences between tacos vs burgers in our article to better understand their origins, flavors, and nutrition. 

Quick Facts


  • Origin: Mexico
  • Shape: U-shaped
  • Bread: Tortillas
  • Flavor: Spicy, savory


  • Origin: America
  • Shape: Cylindrical
  • Bread: Burger buns
  • Flavor: Sweet, sour, salty

Related: Mexican dishes, so good you can’t ignore them!

What Is Taco?

Taco is prominent Mexican street food. This particular food derives its name from the word “tlahco.” “Tlahco” in Nahuatl language, mainly used by residents in Central Mexico, means “half” or “in the middle” in English, which effectively reflects the characteristics of this beautiful Mexican food. 

To enjoy it, people choose their favorite stuffing, fold them in a Mexican flatbread, namely tortilla, then eat the food by hand. Thus, a taco is a U-shaped shell filled with a variety of toppings, including but not limited to beef, pork, turkey, beans, and lettuce. 

This street food was created initially in Mexico during the 19 century to serve as accessible and affordable food for the working-class people, especially the Mexican silver miners. Through time, it has gained popularity. Eventually, nowadays, you can easily find tacos anywhere worldwide.

What Is Hamburger?

Unlike tacos, burgers were created in the U.S. This famous American fast food’s name comes from the word “Hamburg” in German. 

In the 19th century, German Hamburg beef was made into patties to form pricey Hamburg steaks. Then, when German people migrated to New York and Chicago, they opened German restaurants to offer those expensive Hamburg steaks. Yet, at that moment, Hamburg steaks could not impress so many people. 

Only until the Industrial Revolution, when factory workers sometimes ate Hamburg steaks in their meals and found it annoying to eat this dish while standing, the hamburger, a meat patty sandwiched between two bread slices, was first introduced. This evolution from a Hamburg steak has turned this dish into an indispensable part of the American culinary culture. 

At present, it have become many people’s favorite fast food. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) data, an adult American consumes on average 2.4 burgers per day. 

Tacos Vs Burgers: 4 Key Differences

Although both are flavorful, these 2 fast foods are not identical. You may find several differences between these two in their origins, shapes, bread, and flavors. 


Tacos were born in Mexican cuisine. Through several years of development, it now has many variations in different areas of Mexico, making it not only a stunning and delicious dish but also an essential part of Mexican culture. 

On the other hand, hamburgers are the U.S people’s creation. While there were several controversies over the nutritional values of burgers, they are still integral factors that help build the U.S national identity. 


Since they are half folded tortillas, tacos are U-shaped. In this dish, tortillas serve as containers to hold as many tasty fillings as possible. 

Meanwhile, hamburgers are cylindrical. The two half of a burger bun sandwiches the meat patty and various toppings chosen based on your likings.  


A crucial ingredient when making tacos is a tortilla. This Mexican flatbread, made from corn flour or wheat flour, has been a part of Mexican cuisine for thousands of years. You can prepare tacos with soft wheat tortillas, hard-shell tortillas, or soft corn tortillas. 

On the contrary, the bread used to create burgers is a burger bun. This round, risen bread was invented in 1916 to hold the patty and other toppings effectively. People typically cut these squat buns in half, then place the meat, tomatoes, and salad in between so that hamburgers can be portable and convenient to eat. 


Both tacos and burgers now have endless flavor combinations. Yet, the primary flavor of these two dishes is pretty distinct. 

The must-have toppings of tacos are cilantro, fresh onions, chili peppers, and salsa. Thus, this Mexican street food’s flavors tend to be a little spicy, savory, and greasy. 

Meanwhile, the best burgers come with sweet, salty, sour, and a bit crunchy flavors. Besides, while the bun can be soft, the patty should be juicy and meaty. Therefore, you can enjoy this beautiful combination of tastes and textures to the last bite. 

Which Is Better For Your Health?

While burgers are flavorful, they contain a high-carb bun, mayonnaise, lean beef patty, and sweet sauce. These ingredients are associated with high-fat and high-carb contents. 

On the other hand, tacos are much healthier since they offer a lower amount of fat. Also, tortillas, especially the corn ones, deliver fibers, whole grains, and other nutrients, thus containing fewer calories. 

What Is The Secret To Juicy Hamburgers?

A juicy hamburger comes from a juicy meat patty. Unfortunately, when meat is grilled, it usually loses some moisture, eventually drying the patty. Thus, if you want to keep your burger juicy, experts recommend that you add some tablespoons of ice-cold water into the mixture of the ground meat patty. The ice-cold water helps the meat to retain the moisture effectively.

Tamara Pierce

Tamara Pierce is a food writer at Elapasony, passionate about exploring diverse cuisines and sharing recipes and food experiences. From trendy restaurants to local hotspots, she's always on the lookout for new and exciting flavors.

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