Las Cazuelas

One of the best

It is shocking to find the elegant, upscale plating and delicate flavors of Las Cazuelas in a quiet corner of a large strip mall. It’s especially surprising given menu prices that are not much more than at a taco truck. Las Cazuelas (named for the large circular pans that decorate the walls) is a mom and pop restaurant serving food the proprietors know well and love dearly. You can taste the harmony.

Things start well with bold habenero-tomatillo table salsa that sets into a perfect gel. The chips that come with it are mediocre, which probably is a good thing. You don’t want to destroy your appetite on salsa. More, better things are to come.

Enchiladas de mole Poblano is a grand meal, the mole very traditional and well-balanced. It leads with chocolate — not too sweet — and finishes with smoky chile. Rice and creamy beans make this the type of plate you’d expect in a high-end Mexican restaurant.

As good as the enchiladas are, we actually prefer snacks at Las Cazuelas. Traditional Poblano bread-based bites are thoughtfully presented like gastropub small plates. Chanclas are basically wet sliders: pulled chicken and avocado sandwiches on spongy bread completely doused in a chili sauce with charred crumbs of chorizo. They are artistically crowned with halos of onion. The sauce is more bitter than sweet and tastes mostly of dried chilies. Molletes are sometimes described as Mexican bruschetta. These dressed rolls show a clear Spanish tapas influence. Halved bollilo rolls are spread with creamy refried beans then topped with a layer of milky mozzarella cheese and pico de gallo.

Make sure to save room for at least one taco arabe. This Poblano specialty, a creation of Lebanese immigrants, is a puffy flour tortilla filled with cumin-marinated pork. Classically, this is done on a shawarma-like vertical spit, but here the meat simply is marinated, chopped, and finished with chipotle sauce that mimics the chili sauces of the Middle East. The meat is seasoned heavily with epazote, which plays very well with the cumin. The spicy, herbaceous meat and the smoky hot salsa bring new flavors to a familiar snack.

What to Eat
Las Cazuelas, Enchiladas de Mole Poblano
Enchiladas de Mole Poblano
This elegant plate is served next door to a spray tan place.
Las Cazuelas, Chanclas
These soaker sliders are as heavenly as their halos suggest.
Las Cazuelas, Molletes
Super creamy refried beans make Mexican French Bread Pizza crave-worthy.
Las Cazuelas, Tacos Arabes
Tacos Arabes
Tacos Arabes: super juicy meat with beautiful flavor
Las Cazuelas, Chips and Salsa
Chips and Salsa
Table salsa would be labelled XXX-Extra hot in a supermarket.
This restaurant is featured in the following eating tours.
12 stops | 85 MILES | 2 hr 50 min

Las Vegas high-end restaurants offer deluxe meals created by celebrity chefs. But what if you don't want to splurge? What if you want delicious food at a fair price in a restaurant known only to locals and savvy travelers? Here are a dozen hidden gems where you can eat well without fuss and bother.

Open Year Round
Meals Served
Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Alcohol Served
Outdoor Seating

Other Nearby Restaurants

  • Chile Verde Express

    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Jammed into the corner of a Las Vegas service-station convenience store, Chile Verde Express is a little counter serving sensationally good Mexican food.

  • Viva Las Arepas

    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Viva Las Arepas is an oasis of Venezuelan excellence at the end of the Las Vegas Strip. Mesquite grilled meats are not to be missed.

  • Sushi Mon

    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Vegas locals don’t go to casino buffets as much these days. This is the way they do all-you-can-eat: Unlimited fresh sushi rolls made to order.

  • Fox Smokehouse BBQ

    Boulder City, Nevada

    Fox Smokehouse is a charming little BBQ dive where competition pit-masters serve excellent wings, rings & slow-cooked brisket.

  • Eat

    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Eat is an inventive café in the heart of Downtown Las Vegas serving breakfast comfort classics reinvented by an ambitious chef.

  • John Mull’s Meats/Roadkill Grill

    Las Vegas, Nevada

    When this deer processor and butcher started a BBQ stand, it caused a sensation. John Mull’s beef ribs are worth driving out of town for.