One of Chicago’s outstanding attributes is our food. I’ve been to a few places and nothing tops Chicago food. It’s inevitable. Every year to acknowledge the best food in the world, Chicago has it’s very own ‘Restaurant Week’ and it’s that time of year again. From January 24-February 9, locals and tourists will have the opportunity to feed those taste buds to their delight. With over 300 restaurants being honored, we decided to give you 25 of Chicago’s fave restaurants to try out during Restaurant Week. We asked Chicagoans where they go to eat and they’ve answered. Did we mention they’re all black owned? Whether you’re just trying them out or going back for your fave grub, we have you covered on where to get some of Chicago’s finest eats. Check them out below.
1. Soule Chicago
1931 W. Chicago Ave
This authentic soul food restaurant has proven to be one of Chicago’s top favorites, including mine. They have an extensive menu which entails Jerk, seafood, chicken, lamb chops and what good are any of these without the perfect sides?! You can choose from a delectable menu of desserts and the fun part? You can bring your own bottle. They also offer catering and to go options. What are you waiting for?
Check them out on Instagram: @soulechicago
2. Mikkey’s Retro Grill
5319 S. Hyde Park Blvd
8126 S. Stony Island Ave
503 E. 47th
Chicago made so much noise about Mikkey’s. I hate myself for having not yet to try it, but it’s on my personal list. Owned by rapper turned exec Mikkey Halsted, this place deserves all the raves. Offering italian beefs, tenders and wings, tacos, chicken philly’s and “some of the best burgers and chicken sandwiches coming out of Chicago.” It doesn’t stop there. What’s good of a menu without good dessert? Grab one of the many flavor shakes Mikkey’s offer alongside one of their specialty fries.
Check them out on Instagram: @mikkeysgrill
3. Lite House Whole Food Grill
1660 E. 55th St.
Located in the heart of Hyde Park, Lite House is your go to fulfill whatever you’re craving. From wraps, salads, tacos to pasta and pizza, this spot is here to satisfy that hunger. They’re also family friendly with a cool little kids menu. They have catering options for those big parties you might be planning. Local or tourist, we believe this is a must stop on your list.
Check them out on Instagram: @litehousegrill
4. Phlavz Bar & Grille
717 W. Maxwell St.
The new kids on the block came and made their proper noise. Continuing their journey from running one of the tasiest food trucks, Phlavz is the new hot spot for locals to go enjoy a nice meal, nice atmosphere with good music. If you’re a jerk fanatic then this place is for you. Offering an extensive jerk menu with jerk fries, jerk nachos and tacos, jerk chicken of course and even jerk ceasar salads. From what we’re hearing, the salmon rolls is a must. Don’t leave this one off your list.
Check them out on Instagram: @phlavz
5. Can’t Believe It’s Not Meat
1368 E. 53rd St.
What good is restaurant week if you don’t have a vegetarian spot on your list? Vegans can tag along too. Now if you have a hard time adjusting to the veggie lifestyle then I’m sure this spot will be more than helpful. Another gem located in Hyde Park, this place features mouth watering non meat options that will keep you coming back. Salads, shakes and smooties are just some go-tos for you to start on, but the food doesn’t stop there. Offering burgers, philly’s, pizza puffs, tacos, nachos, lasagna and more, all of which contains NO MEAT. You read and heard it right, no meat is involved which makes it safe for the vegetarians and vegans.
Check them out on Instagram: @cantbelieveitsnotmeatinc
6. S2 Express Grill
5058 S, Halsted
S2 serves as one of my personal faves since they were on 127th. They particularly became popular with their ‘Wet Willies’ styled alcoholic slushies. The food, the ambiance and drinks make up the perfect spot to kick it at. Whatever you’re craving, S2 have every tastebud covered. Moving from Calumet Park to the Fuller Park area, the express hot spot has expanded their menu from before. Here, you can get steak dinners, a little surf and turf, lamb chops, lobster and crab. If that doesn’t do it for you, pasta, sandwiches, salads and a load of appetizers with some delicious sides certainly will. Don’t waste any time heading over to try out one of the best eats of Chicago.
Check them out on Instagram: @s2_express_grill
7. Two Fish Crab Shack
641 E. 47th St.
For all the seafood lovers, Two Fish is the place to be. Besides the lines almost out the door due to the hype, the food is pretty good. Home of arguably the best seafood boils in the city. They also serve fried fish, baskets, calamari and wings as well if seafood isn’t your first choice. I don’t know if it’s the variety of sauces you can choose from or maybe it just might be crack they actually put in their boils. Either way, you’ll be hooked.
Check them out on Instagram: @twofishcrab
8. Ain’t She Sweet Cafe
526 E. 43rd St.
9920 S. Western Ave
We always love a good sandwich shop especially ones who provide good customer service and a nice atmosphere. Ain’t She Sweet offers great sandwiches, salads and soups to appease those appetites as well as paninis, shakes and smoothies. Wouldn’t things be that sweet without desserts right?They also offer catering options. Make your way to one of it’s two locations to enjoy.
Check out their Instagram: @aintshesweetcafe
9. Truth Italian
56 E. Pershing Rd.
This Italian hot spot owned by Peytyn Willborn, settles in the heart of Bronzeville. This one has been on my wish list for too long and it’s time I stop playing. I’ve always had a love for authentic Italian food and I hear this place is perfect. Offering breakfast from 8am-3pm, Truth offers a variety of waffles, french toast, omelets, chicken and waffles as well as a kids menu. If you miss out on breakfast, stop in for dinner for your choice of antipasto, pasta, salmon, steaks and chops, salads and great appetizers.
Check them out on Instagram: @truthitalian
10. The Wrap Bar
8154 S. Cottage Grove Ave
Home of some of the best wraps in the city, this is for sure my spot. The Wrap Bar is for the healthy eaters who like living a bit dangerous. Offering your usual wraps, salads, soups and sandwiches, The Wrap Bar gives us just a little extra. Buffalo rolls, wings and even grilled cheese is up for grabs. Wash it all down with one of their shakes or satisfy that sweet tooth with their bomb ass cookies or funnel cakes. If you go here and you’re disappointed, I promise on my behalf, your next lunch is on us!
11. Friistyle Chicago
5059 S. Prairie St.
Let’s take a little trip to Belgian for our next meal. Friistyle represents as one of the popular fast food spots nestled out in Bronzeville. From Italian beefs to wings to lamb and chicken alfredo, Friistyle offers a twist to their delicious frites. Veggie lovers have their options as well. If you’re planning on giving a big party, their catering options are at your service.
Check them out on Instagram: @friistylechi
12. Hidden Manna Cafe
3613 216th St, Matteson
As we head out to the south suburbs, take a pit stop at Hidden Manna. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, this suburban hidden gem makes you feel more at home than out to eat. They even offer live entertainment on the weekends. Settle in for homestyle shrimp and grits or stay for dinner to grub on crawfish, chops and steaks, burgers and more. Don’t head out without trying one of their cakes or pies.
Check them out on Instagram: @hiddenmannacafe
13. Soul Shack
1368 E. 53rd St.
You can’t go wrong with a soul food spot unless they’re nasty. Thankfully for Soul Shack Chicago, that isn’t a problem. Imagine your grandma’s Sunday cooking on any day of the week you please. You can dine in or carry out with some of their famous soul rolls or select from one of their chicken entrees. They also offer lamb chops, salmon and even short ribs. Top it all off with a soul serving side and a delicious dessert.
Check them out on Instagram: @soulshack53
14. Deli King
410 W. 71st
If you’re from Chicago then you know that you have to go to the hood to get some of the best food in the city. Stop by to get your choice of salads, soups, sandwiches and wraps. The Deli King offers healthy eats as well as options for the meat lovers. Tacos and nachos, fries and pies are all at your discretion right in the Englewood area. They can be found on Uber Eats and Door Dash as well.
Check them out on Instagram: @delikinginc
15. 5 Loaves Eatery
405 E. 75th St.
This is my first time hearing of this place, but Chicagoans have been raving like hell about it. Family run and family oriented, 5 Loaves offer breakfast and lunch with catering options as well. I’m a sucker for breakfast sandwiches and the offer more than just your sausage and egg. Salmon croquettes, different style pancakes, omelettes and more. Representing southern style food, you can get your soul on with mac and yams or settle the score with a fish fry.
Check them out on Instagram: @5loaveseatery
16. Original Soul Vegetarian
203 E. 75th
Everybody loves soul food and with people trying to get healthier, why not make it vegetarian and vegan friendly? Serving Chicagoland for 30+ years, Soul Vegetarian takes pride in feeding not only the soul, but the healthy portion of it. With most of their menu made with protein and tofu meat, they offer breakfast, lunch and dinner. What really caught my attention was the fact that they have a juice bar! I love a good smoothie.
Check them out on Instagram: @soulveg
17. FruVe´ xPress Juicery
1108 W. Madison St.
1130 S. Wabash Ave.
Speaking of healthy eats, take it a step further with this ultimate juice bar. Start by getting one of their healthy Acai bowls to jump start your day. Complete your bowl with a juice or smoothie that caters to your health needs. I love this place even more because they have cleansing programs customized just for you.
Check them out on Instagram: @fruve_xpress
18. Joe Willies Seafood Bar
14719 S. Halsted
I like to call this place one of the south suburbs hidden gems. Claiming the “best cajun spot in harvey” Joe’s lives up to their name. If you’re super big on seafood then this spot is perfect for you. From platters to seafood boils, you can’t go wrong. During the summer, the place boasts the ambiance with an open pool for customers to enjoy giving you a real “at sea” experience.
Check them out on Instagram: @joewilliesseafoodbar
19. Batters & Berries
2748 N Lincoln
I was a bit surprised to find out this place was black owned. Simply because I’ve been coming here for years. There’s normally a wait time to be seated, but it’s well worth it. Serving up all your brunch needs, they offer breakfast specialties for the big appetites as well as small pancake plates for the little biters. Hosted up north, you won’t miss a beat. They’re also BYOB and of course we love those.
Check them out on Instagram: @batterandberries
20. Lemme Get Ummm
7016 W. North Ave
We’re advocates of black owned businesses especially when it’s one of our people. Be one of the first to try this new spot out during your stop. Select from sandwiches, salads, wraps, smoothies and desserts. There has been major hype around this place, not just because of the name, but people have been raving about their Hennything infused ‘Henny Linnie’ chicken fajita salad.
Check them out on Instagram: @lemme_get_ummm
21. No Cobbs
574 S. Torrence Ave, Calumet City
19030 Crawford Ave, Country Club Hills
It’s so raw seeing Chicago be Chicago so ‘No Cobbs’ was the perfect name. With two locations spanned out across the south suburbs, this spot serves chicken, seafood, salads and sandwiches.
Check them out on Instagram: @no_cobbs
22. Home of the Hoagy
1316 W. 111th St.
Another hood classic. Whether you grew up in the city or the suburbs, you’ve had to have Home of the Hoagy. The sandwich. The sauce. It’s worth the long wait time and its Chicago style attitude gives the place that authentic Chicago presence. Located on the south side, it’s well worth the trip.
23. Pearl’s Place
3901 S. Michigan
Let’s slide to the low end for our dining pleasures. Serving southern style soul food, straight from granny’s kitchen. Bronzeville is the stomping grounds for some of our best restaurants and Pearl’s has earned their stripes. Doesn’t matter if you’re dining in, carrying out or catering your next event, Pearl’s has something for everybody. Breakfast all day if you want, seafood, chicken and sandwiches are just some of their attributes to enjoy. They even offer a buffet.
24. Simply Soup, Salad & Sandwiches
635 E. 47th St.
Sandwich shops have always been my fave, especially when they’re good. Keeping things simple, they offer salads, sandwiches, wraps and soups. They offer lunch specials as well as a variety of flatbread pizza to choose from. Call ahead to check out the soup of the day to warm the soul in this cold ass Chicago weather.
Check them out on Instagram: @simplyssands
25. Harold’s Chicken
ALL OVER CHICAGO
I don’t know what kind of list this would’ve been if we didn’t include an all time Chicago favorite, Harold’s Chicken. If you’re from here, then you pretty much grew up on Harold’s. When tourists come to visit, it’s a must that Harold’s make their food bucket list. Don’t even think about ordering a 6 piece if you don’t get mild sauce. The sauce makes up why the city is in love to begin with. With plenty locations to choose from, Harold’s is sure to satisfy that hunger.
Last modified: January 21, 2020