Did you know that Houstonians dine out more than the residents of any other city in the US? That doesn’t come as a surprise, considering there are more than 10,000 eateries in the city. Exploring some of the best restaurants in Houston will be a fun experience for every newcomer, and we’re here to show you the way.
After moving to Houston, you will find yourself in a foodie paradise. With more than 75 national categories of cuisine, 600 vegan-friendly spots, more than 700 food trucks, and 150 farm-to-table joints, finding any kind of meal you might yearn for won’t be a problem. To help you out a bit, we’ve made a list of essential spots you should check out, no matter if you are vegan, BBQ and steak lover, or international cuisine aficionado.
Check Out the Finest Vegan Restaurants in Houston
Moving to Houston, a bustling Southern metropolis might not seem like the obvious choice for vegans, but it should be. A survey created by the finance site WalletHub puts the Space City on the map of the top vegan-friendly places in the nation. You will find diners with dairy-free options, that also serve mushroom meatballs, not-milkshakes, and extravagant salads. Being green has never been easier in the South.
Green Seed Vegan
This food truck turned brick-and-mortar eatery has 100% vegan, soy-free menus with gluten-free options as well. Order some paninis, fried rice, or mushroom cheesecake. If you prefer your meals raw, try rocking tacos, rawrrito, or nori rolls. Also, for those craving sweets, Green Seed Vegan has cheesecakes, brownies, and cupcakes.
Sunshine’s Health Food Store & Vegetarian Deli
Located right across the University campus, Sunshine’s Health Food Store & Vegetarian Deli has been serving Houstonians since 1983. It is also one of the first places that featured raw and vegetarian dishes on its menu.
Treat yourself with veggie burgers, cheeseburgers, or sandwiches, and you won’t regret it. Also, don’t forget to pick up supplements like bee pollen from the shop’s market side.
Pepper Tree serves 100% vegan Asian meals made entirely without MSG and cooked in triple filtered water. The spot is famous for its buffet, which expands during the weekends. Stop by and try some house-made desserts, salads, and smokey tofu.
There Are Many Indian Restaurants in Houston With Delicious Food
Did you know that the first Indian restaurant in the US was opened in the 60s, while today there are more than 80,000 of them across the country? Whether you are searching for the masala or healthy veggie meal, there are many Indian eateries scattered across Houston neighborhoods. No matter where you live in the metropolis, you will be in the vicinity of excellent dining spots.
Eating at Pondicheri is almost rite of passage for all Houstonians. Chef and owner Anita Jaisinghani, this year’s James Beard Award finalist, puts a modern spin on traditional meals like dosa and masala chicken. Besides, if you are thirsty, check their impressive offer of wines, sodas, beers, and cocktails.
Are you in the mood for fine dining in the heart of the city? Kiran’s is a traditional and elegant Indian restaurant, where you can order things like Texas tandoori, seafood curry with coconut, or sea bass. Its ambiance is ideal for a date night, so if you are moving across the country for love and looking for a place to take out the loved one, you can’t go wrong with Kiran’s.
When the owner and chef Sheel Joshi created Surya India, he was inspired by his Indo-European roots. The menu is filled with famous fares, such as a plate of sea bass and mint chicken or award-winning Prawn Mangalorean.
2020 Review of the Best New Restaurants in Houston
Living in Houston will put you in the center of the booming restaurant scene, so when you unpack, put on some fancy clothes and check out some newly opened establishments. They might be the answer to the question – where should you eat out tonight?
Taqo Mexican Kitchen y Tequileria
Houston suburbs are not just quiet bedroom communities, they are places where you can have a nice night out while enjoying tasty meals.
Taqo Mexican Kitchen y Tequileria is a newcomer in the Heights that is already generating quite a buzz. See for yourself why locals love a diverse offer of dishes that range from veggie-friendly options to meaty tacos for omnivores.
Local Group Brewing Takes Its Eats and Drinks Seriously
Local Group Brewing is serious about its drinks and food, and that can be seen in the diverse offer of ales and snacks that go with it. If you are looking for a way to meet new neighbors and bond with them, inviting them to share a massive pretzel with you might do the trick.
The Blind Goat Is One of the Best Restaurants in Houston in 2020
Are you a fan of Vietnamese cuisine? If the answer is yes, you must stop by one of the hottest new spots, The Blind Goat. Make a reservation, though, because this newly opened eatery was named a semi-finalist of James Beard Awards in the category of the Best New Restaurant, and there will be a waiting line.
[table id=42 /]
Eat out in Local-Favorite Italian Restaurants in Houston
Out of 800,000 eateries in the US, almost 100,000 serve Italian cooking. This cuisine became one of the favorites for many Americans, and today eating pizza or spaghetti is a part of a lifestyle. Luckily for Houstonians, there are many eateries where they can indulge themselves with Italian treats, pizza, and pasta made Italian style.
Damian’s Cucina Italiana
Old world atmosphere with elegant and warm decoration is what makes Damian’s Cucina Italiana one of the greatest places to grab a bite in the metropolis. Make a reservation and enjoy some spaghetti with Mama Mandola meatballs or salmon topped with basil pesto. For those with a sweet tooth, there is gelato, tiramisu, and cream cake.
At Fratelli’s, the meals are served with the addition of great music coming from a piano bar. You will get to enjoy traditional pasta, Pollo Picatta, Fettuccini Alfredo, and Neapolitan Stone Oven Pizza. Share Cannoli’s, Coconut Meringue Pie, and Meyer Lemon Tart with your loved ones, and you will see why this is one of the spots locals love so much.
Does having dinner in someone’s bedroom sound weird to you? If you stop by Patrenella’s it won’t feel odd at all. The diner is located in a house where owner Sammy Patrenella grew up.
The comfortable and cozy vibe is ideal for parents that are looking for things to do in Houston with kids. Make a bonding experience out of trying different types of pasta and meats.
Discover Great Steaks Restaurants in Houston
The average American consumes approximately 50 pounds of beef annually. Luckily for Houstonians, the city’s diverse and exciting dining scene offers plenty of eateries that serve classic, grilled over wood or seared steaks.
Taste of Texas
Taste of Texas is one of the highest-volume steakhouses in the US, and it served up $17 million worth of meat in 2016. With the meat aging process of 40 days, you will get to try some of the most tender and mouthwatering steaks ever. Get 6, 10, or 14 ounces center-cut filet, add some potatoes on the side, and top everything with a beer or a dessert.
Killen’s STQ, with only 60 seats, is not the most sizeable place in the metropolis, but its diverse menu and tasty meals, it is a spot every foodie should visit.
Don’t miss out on specialties like tandoori grilled hen salad and pecan smoked pork belly. Also, there is a selection of fine wines to go with your servings as well as desserts like bacon tres leches bread pudding and smoked chocolate cake.
Brenner’s on the Bayou
Rustic and elegant at the same time, with a cozy cocktail lounge, spacious patios, and impressive wine cellar, Brenner’s is an excellent escape spot. Order USDA prime New York stips, prime bone-in ribeye Colorado lamb chops or renaissance farms roasted poultry. When you are done, treat yourself with ice cocktails, craft beer, or wine.
Stop by Some of the Finest Seafood Restaurants in Houston
With the latest growth in the consumption of seafood, more and more Americans are flocking to seafood joints looking for tasty meals overflowing with underwater ingredients. From crawfish and grilled shrimp tacos to fried catfish, Houstonians love their seafood, and to see why, there are more than a few spots you should check out.
Tampico was opened in 1996 and has been one of the most popular joints in Texas ever since. Famous for its recipe of the “red snapper a la Pancha,” this low-key and affordable spot is perfect for families and friends that like to kick back and enjoy each serving.
Go over the menu and order something from a variety of options, or choose one from the fresh fish display. Foodies will probably make a weekly trip to Tampico just so they could try everything from the offer. From red snapper, shrimps, crab legs to scallops, squid, octopus, and frog legs, this is the place where even the pickiest seafood eater will find a dish to his liking.
Are you in the mood for contemporary and authentic Mexican coastal cuisine? La Fisheria might be everything you are looking for when you want to grab lunch. A variety of different types of dishes will leave you coming for more.
If you are moving to a city alone, happy hours in La Fisheria are perfect for mingling and meeting new people. Also, if you need a little bit of liquid courage, you can order anything from wines, beers to margaritas, and cocktails.
State of Grace
The State of Grace is an homage to the power of recollection, a place where you can come with your friends and family to laugh, banter, and eat.
Interior design magnifies the vibe of Texas from another time. Game hangs on the walls, oyster bar, elegant lighting, brick walls and furniture from leather, and woods make the State of Grace a unique and unforgettable location.
When you stop admiring the design, get some of the seasonally inspired foods, dessert and top everything up with a glass of fine wine, cocktail, or a beer.
2020 Top Rated Japanese Restaurants You Should Visit
Did you know that Japanese cuisine is one of the three national cooking traditions recognized by the UN for its cultural significance? Luckily, Houstonians can enjoy this world-famous cuisine in some of the top-rated diners scattered all over the metropolis. Chefs prepare traditional dishes like sashimi and yakitori, but they can also put their own twist to them.
Located in Chinatown, Toukei offers its customers rich bowls of ramen, glazed wings, scallion chicken and wasabi-marinated octopus. This shochu and whiskey bar also has sake, malt whiskey, and chu-hi in its offer, making it a perfect spot for dining and drinking as well.
When the name of the place roughly translates to “the art of eating,” you can expect big things from its offer, and Kuu doesn’t fall short.
Wood paneled and peaceful setting combined with artsy plating give the customers an unforgettable eating experience. While you are at Kuu, try crispy duck, a variety of shrimp plates as well as wine, sake, and champagne.
When you are craving both traditional and modern Japanese plates, make a reservation at Kata Robata and enjoy arguably the freshest fish in the city. The fish is flown in from Japan more than a few times a week. If the cost of living in Houston leaves you on a tight budget by the end of the month (which is not that likely), but you still want to go out, check the happy hour at Kata Robata and save some money.
Essential Mexican and Tex-Mex Eateries You Can’t Miss
Mexican and Tex Mex cuisines are popular all over the US, but especially in the South, making Texas the epicenter for all the tortilla and nachos lovers. Both have deep roots in Spanish and South American cultures, but what is precisely the difference between Mexican and Tex-Mex?
The main ingredients used in Mexican cuisine are pork and poultry, while Tex-Mex relies on beef, wheat flour, and yellow queso. You can relax if you are a foodie that is concerned about favorite foods when moving to Space City. The metropolis has all kinds of Mexican and Tex-Mex eateries whose menus will blow your mind.
When you don’t know where to take your date, head to one out of three Teotihuacan Cafe locations and have some parrilladas, piled high, beef or fajitas, and short ribs. Here you will find high-quality authentic Mexican recipes such as homemade tortillas. If you are craving something more original and unique, order “Caliente Shrimp” or Teotihuacan Parrillada.
While at Hugo’s, you will get to enjoy a playful rendition of Mexican classics such as duck carnitas and squash soup. Chef Hugo Ortega says that the food is “as light and fresh as a seafood cocktail prepared by fishermen on the beach.” You can request some shrimps, clams, or fish and see for yourself. Also, this Montrose spot has a vast selection of tortillas, salads, and spicy meat plates.
Picos is an upscale, super-authentic spot that offers its customers the specialties from seven regions of Mexico. Each region has a special recipe you can try, from charbroiled chicken breast to wild boar or lamb.
While at Picos, don’t skip Chilorio, a slow-roasted pulled pork with avocado and pico de gallo. When you want to have breakfast, you can build your omelet or get chilaquiles enmolados, a pulled chicken with mole negro.
There Are More Than a Few BBQ Destinations Meat Lovers Will Enjoy
When relocating, you don’t have to wonder how to prepare a grill for moving on top of everything else, just leave it in storage. If you want something right off the grill, all you have to do is check out some of the most popular BBQ joints in the metropolis.
Tejas Chocolate & BBQ
Chocolate is not the first thing barbecue is associated with BBQ, but if you stop by Tejas, you can have some mouthwatering sweets and grilled specialties all under the same roof.
The joint has all of the classics every omnivore is used to – pork belly, ribs, and brisket. However, there are some out-of-the-box offers like brisket-topped wedge salad and a turkey sandwich with avocado. If you are craving sugar, grab chocolate bread pudding, panna cotta, or chocolate truffles. Wash it all down with soda, tea, lemonade, or locally roasted coffee.
Pappa Charles is settled in Cypress, and it might be a short drive away from Downtown, but if you ship your car when relocating, you won’t have a problem reaching the destination. It will be worth it. Get classics like mac and cheese, brisket, or boudin and sausages. You can also have pork ribs and turkey with potato salad on the side.
The Pit Room
Located in Montrose, The Pit Room is a smokehouse with two custom made, barrel-style offset smokers. High on the list of things you should try here are smoked ribs, turkey, and brisket.
If you bring a party with you, you can split Feast No1, which can feed up to six people, or Feast No2, that will make sure eight people leave with a full belly. When you skip breakfast at home, you can stop by and have some eggs and jalapeno cheddar sausage that will give you enough energy to conquer the day.
Chase Down Food Trucks and Get Mouthwatering Meals
According to data from company IBISWorld, there are around 23,880 active food truck businesses across the country. Space City is one of the friendliest cities for this kind of service because of its rules and regulations. When you relocate, you can chase down your favorite trucks and enjoy some mouthwatering specialties.
Mico’s Hot Chicken
Located near Midtown, this truck is one of the newest in the area, but it is quickly becoming local-favorite because of its sandwiches. Have Nashville hot chicken and add some crisp pickles; you won’t regret it.
Oh My Gogi
If you ask around about the trucks, most Houstonians will probably tell you about Oh My Gogi. The vehicles can be spotted in Rice Village, and when you notice them, don’t miss out on ordering Korean beef, ramen burger, or kimchi topped with cheese and spicy mayo.
The Waffle Bus
With a name like Waffle Bus, you have to expect excellent desserts. When you spot this truck, get a banana Nutella waffle with sweet cream, and you won’t be disappointed. Other dishes available are waffle burgers, chicken fryders, and waffle fries. You can track down the Bus’s movement on its website, so no matter where it is, you can get the meals you are craving.