Carnitas Express has been serving up homemade recipes for 16 years, and their always-packed Menifee restaurant clearly demonstrates they’ll be around for 16 more. This well-loved local eatery started off with a flagship location off Newport and Bradley Road, and due to popular demand has expanded to two more locations in the city of Murrieta.
In 1997, current owner and partner Eva Duran purchased the taco shop that is now Carnitas Express with her brother Armando Benitez and father, Amando Benitez. At the time, the shop was about a quarter of the size it is today and served fast food on paper plates from a pick-up window, as the Carnitas Express name suggested. After they purchased the location, the name was just about the only thing that stayed the same.
The restaurant was expanded to include much more seating and a full-service bar area. With 30 years' experience in the kitchen and a real love of cooking, Armando completely recreated the menu to include all homemade dishes reflective of both Mexican and American cuisines. The sit-down style family atmosphere offers friendly service and real food on real plates seven days a week. The little taco shop that once employed just three people now employss over 80 individuals across three locations and feeds dozens of hungry customers every day.
In 2005, Eva’s husband, Doro Duran, joined the partnership and now plays a vital role in the success of Carnitas Express. Bringing with him 30 years of experience in the restaurant industry and a passion for the family-run business, Duran helps ensure that this local chain of restaurants is destined for many more years of excellence. Even their son, Hector has grown up in the restaurant and now works as a server and shift leader, carrying on the family tradition.
Carnitas Express is open each day at 6 a.m., ready to serve up breakfast favorites and Mexican classics. Breakfast is served all day every day, with the idea that the menu should offer people what they want to eat any time they want.
“There’s something for everyone,” says Doro.
Combining ideas to offer both a Mexican breakfast and traditional American classics, the menu offers home cooked favorites including French toast, pancakes, omeletts, breakfast burritos, combination plates, much more. Everything on the menu is made fresh daily from family recipes, including their trio of homemade salsas. Stop in Monday through Friday from 6 until 11 a.m. and try their breakfast special for just $3.99, which includes two pancakes, two eggs any way you like, and two strips of bacon or sausage.
The Mariachi Band performs live every Friday night from 6-9 p.m. and a DJ takes over at 9:30 p.m., spinning tunes until 1:30 a.m. The kitchen stays open on Friday and Saturday nights until close, so come by for the food and stay for the party.
Celebrate Mother’s Day this Sunday at Carnitas Express. Mom will receive a complimentary glass of champagne, and reservations are encouraged.
Carnitas Express Menifee
26900 Newport Rd., #117
Menifee, CA 92584
Carnitas Express Los Alamos (Murrieta)
25030 Hancock Ave, #102
Murrieta, CA 92562
Carnitas Express Madison (Murrieta)
25145 Madison Ave, #101
Murrieta, CA 92562
Website: Carnitas Express