There is a good chance you’ll see a line of people outside waiting to order before the sign for Taco Temple in Morro Bay, California, comes into view. The restaurant with outdoor seating is positioned at the edge of a large parking lot shared with a nearby grocery store just off Highway 1.
New diners should be prepared for a salad with nearly every item available to order. The restaurant is known for its pile of spring mix and other vegetables with creamy Temple dressing that is served under, on top of, or alongside each selection.
Taquitos will pleasantly surprise you if you expect yours to arrive as tiny, tightly rolled fried sticks with filling. Taco Tempo loads them up so that they appear more like small burritos. Spicy bean is a must with its tiny kick of heat amidst the creamy beans. Taquitos come alongside the salad.
Stuffed Jalapenos offer a new way to experience traditional poppers. The version here includes halved jalapenos filled with cheese, wrapped in bacon and baked. They are pleasantly mild, allowing taste buds to experience the true flavor of the pepper without overwhelming heat. The peppers are served on top of salad greens.
If you are in the mood for a truly original taco experience, order the Calamari Taco. This is not your usual hand-held taco. It is a challenge to uncover the tortilla at the bottom once it is topped with the salad greens, a pile of fried calamari, and crunchy potato matchsticks. It’s served with sweet and tangy mango salsa — a taco you eat in layers with a fork.
Entrees come with black beans, rice, and of course, salad. The Combo Platter includes a Chile Relleno and a Sweet Potato Enchilada. The Anaheim chile has a light cracker crust. It’s stuffed with cheese and served covered in tomatillo sauce. The enchilada comes with a mix of tender strips of sweet potatoes, peppers, and caramelized onions. It’s topped in the same sauce and garnished with pumpkin seeds. The combination of the sweet potato, onions, and sauce create a mix of sweet and tart flavors.
Taco Temple has been serving the community since 1997. The restaurant’s original take on the standard taco and other treats draws people from around Central California whether they live within a few miles or are just passing through.