Maybe there’s a polar vortex outside. Maybe the Bears are about to score a touchdown (... maybe). Or maybe you’re just exhausted after a long week and can’t stand the thought of cooking and doing the dishes. Whatever the reason, you’re not leaving your couch. And, thankfully, you don’t have to. Some of the best restaurants in Chicago are available for delivery exclusively on DoorDash, from award-winning burgers and top-notch tacos to pies from the city’s top pizzerias and fresh pastas from nationally acclaimed hot spots.
Award-winning chef and culinary extraordinaire Bill Kim offers creative takes on Korean staples at Urbanbelly. Born in Seoul and raised in Chicago, Kim is a classically trained fine-dining chef known for his boldly flavored, borderless approach to Korean fare. Some of his most popular creations at Urbanbelly include the coconut curry pho, togarashi fries, and pork and kimchi ramen.
Since debuting in 2012, Au Cheval’s cheeseburger has ranked highly among the best burgers in Chicago — and the entire country. The legendary cheeseburger features two griddled patties topped with gooey melted American cheese, house-made pickles, onions, and a dollop of dijonnaise all sandwiched between a squishy toasted bun. You can even add on a third patty or Au Cheval’s signature thick-cut peppered bacon.
Avec is a Chicago culinary landmark known for its Midwestern takes on Mediterranean classics. When Avec opened in 2003, it received rave reviews for its rustic menu created by legendary Chicago chef Paul Kahan. Today, chef Dylan Patel helms the kitchen, offering an array of award-winning small plates, including the famous chorizo-stuffed and bacon-wrapped dates.
This highly acclaimed Logan Square spot from James Beard-nominated chef Jason Vincent and chef Ben Lustbader serves slightly cheffy Midwestern-inspired food that’s easy to fall in love with. The most impressive thing about Giant is that rather than one or two outstanding dishes, they’re all hits. Giant even makes boring food exciting (see: broccoli with smoked pepper sauce). Anything you order will be delicious, but whatever you do, don’t miss the corn biscuits.
At this decorated West Loop Italian spot, local celebrity chef Sarah Grueneberg’s pasta-making prowess is on display. Since opening in 2015, Monteverde has garnered an impressive collection of accolades, including a James Beard Award. Instead of waiting six (or more) weeks to get a reservation here, you can have Monteverde’s renowned house-made pastas delivered to your door. Order the stuffed cabbage and the burrata and ham appetizer while you’re at it.
Smyth + The Loyalist is a dual-concept restaurant that features a two-Michelin-starred modern tasting-menu restaurant on the first floor (Smyth) and a casual bar below it (The Loyalist). While Smyth gets most of the accolades, The Loyalist serves an outstanding cheeseburger (nicknamed the Dirty Burg) that’s been named the best in America by Bon Appétit.
Freshness is the name of the game at this Italian-inspired New American restaurant helmed by chef Joe Frillman. At Daisies, the menu highlights the bounty of the seasons with sustainably grown ingredients sourced straight from nearby family-run Frillman Farms. House-made pastas are the standouts, including the beet agnolotti topped with trout roe and the potato-filled pierogi with mussels.
Located right across the street from The Publican, this butcher and sandwich shop also comes from chef Paul Kahan and One Off Hospitality. At Publican Quality Meats, you’ll find a selection of sausages and cured meats that can be ordered individually or in sandwiches made with Publican Quality Bread. A word to the wise: The ribollita soup is an absolute must-try.
“Meat-free since ’83” is the slogan at The Chicago Diner, one of the OG vegetarian spots in the city. It has gained a cult following for its veg-friendly spins on diner-style classics. Today, the menu has expanded to include a range of vegan and gluten-free items as well. The seitan Reuben and gyro, the vegan cinnamon roll, and award-winning vegan milkshakes stand out as some of The Chicago Diner’s most popular items.
At this neighborhood favorite from the folks behind Giant, classic Chinese American dishes are replicated using modern techniques and ultra-fresh ingredients. The menu includes all of the mainstays you’d expect, plus a selection of rotating chef’s specials. As with Giant, there isn’t a bad dish on the menu, but you can’t go wrong with the egg rolls filled with Berkshire pork shoulder and Gulf rock shrimp, or the fiery hand-pulled dan dan noodles.
Coda di Volpe brings the soul of southern Italy to the heart of Chicago’s Southport Corridor. The menu shines a spotlight on traditional VPN-certified Neapolitan pizzas made with only the highest-quality ingredients imported straight from Italy. For non-pizza options, diners should look to the chicken diavola, house-made pastas, and arugula salad with pickled and roasted grapes.
Chef Becca Grothe shows off her sandwich wizardry at this small Avondale shop. Grothe’s sandwiches are inspired by the Midwestern classics she grew up eating and are built using ingredients sourced from local farms, bakeries, and markets. The most popular sandwich here is the signature Cubano, and the vegetarian version made with mojo-marinated Phoenix Bean tofu is just as good as the original.
At this West Loop crowd-pleaser from chef Lee Wolen (also the chef behind Michelin-starred Boka), you’ll find all the Italian carbs you crave. Starting with the wood-fired bread is nonnegotiable. Same goes for the ricotta dumplings in a cacio e pepe sauce. You should also direct your attention to the chicken Parm, which manages to stay crunchy while sitting in a fire-roasted tomato marinara en route to your door.
This highly acclaimed Italian joint is helmed by chef Cameron Grant, who did a stint at a Michelin-starred restaurant in Piemonte, Italy, back in the day. Naturally, this place serves Piedmontese fare. Pastas are made in house and are, of course, delicious. The prosciutto-wrapped rabbit loin and the panna cotta with mint and citrus serve as further proof that Osteria Langhe is one of the best restaurants in Chicago.
This contemporary sushi spot serves a top-tier selection of sushi that’s more inspired than your average Americanized spot but more affordable than a fine-dining restaurant. For DoorDash and Caviar, owner Ty Fujimura handpicked the best of Arami’s menu to create an all-star lineup of standard and specialty maki rolls, plus an assortment of small plates to cure all your sushi cravings at home.
Frontera Grill hardly needs an introduction. This world-famous Mexican restaurant from Rick Bayless has been one of Chicago’s best restaurants since it opened in 1987. Although it’s not the hottest new restaurant in town anymore, Frontera Grill is constantly adding new flavors and dishes to the menu and continues to be one of the best places for creative and authentic Mexican food in the city.
This North Shore neighborhood steakhouse describes its dishes as “anti-steakhouse” takes on the classics. While many steak options in Chicago prioritize huge portions and high prices, Sophia flips the script, offering a more thoughtful approach to meat. The ordering move is the Black Angus filet or the signature Sophia-style steak, a peppercorn-crusted Prime flat iron with roasted mushrooms and cognac cream.
Opened in 2005 by the owners of the famed Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse, Quartino is an Italian restaurant in River North run by first-generation Italian American chef John Coletta. At Quartino, authenticity is the overarching theme of the menu, which has something for just about everyone. The best way to start a meal here is with some charcuterie. Coletta’s house-made salumi, such as the spicy soppressata and the duck prosciutto, are the real deal.
Also opened in 2005 by the folks behind Gibsons, Luxbar is a Gold Coast neighborhood saloon that excels in contemporizing classic comfort food with luxe ingredients. While you can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, the chicken tenders really steal the show. They’re encrusted with a three-cereal blend of Grape Nuts, Cap’n Crunch, and Corn Flakes. There’s also a buttermilk fried chicken entrée that was once a secret menu item at Gibsons.
Located next to Piece Brewery & Pizzeria, Brobagel comes from Piece owner Bill Jacobs, who ran Jacobs Bros. Bagels with his three brothers in the ’80s and ’90s. At Brobagel, bagels are made from scratch the same way they were back in the day: boiled in water, hand-dipped in seeds, baked on redwood planks, and finished on the oven’s hearth. There’s a standard array of flavors available, and you can get them with house-made schmears (try the sriracha cream cheese) or in sandwich form.
This River North spot from Hogsalt Hospitality has been one of the best doughnut shops in the city for the past decade, known for the lines that would wrap around the block (and sell out before you got to the front). And now you can get their doughnuts delivered to your door. The Doughnut Vault has a short menu of doughnuts that are made fresh in small batches daily, including favorites like pistachio old-fashioneds and jumbo glazed yeast doughnuts.
For the past 20 years, Southport Grocery and Cafe has reigned as one of Lakeview’s best brunch spots, gaining a loyal following for its all-day breakfast and lunch menu — not to mention its city-famous cupcakes. Fans rave about the breakfast sandwich, which stacks ginger-sage sausage, local butterkäse cheese, a mustard-maple drizzle, arugula, and an over-easy egg on a house-made English muffin. Don’t sleep on the pancakes, either.
At this Streeterville pizzeria, native New Yorker and certified pizzaiolo Robert Garvey churns out some of the best pies in Chicago. After spending 20 years testing dough recipes to create a crust that strikes the perfect balance between crunch and chew, Garvey finally succeeded and opened Robert’s in 2016. To his exceptional crust, Garvey adds winning topping combinations (e.g., brussels sprouts and bacon, fennel and honey) that prove greater than the sum of their parts.
Arguably Chicago’s most iconic steakhouse, Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse has been an institution since opening its doors in 1989. This place serves all the familiar selections, like filet mignon and New York strip, plus more unusual cuts like the Flintstones-size 48-ounce porterhouse. If you’re on the fence about what to get, the 22-ounce W.R. Chicago Cut is the steak that Gibsons is most famous for.
This Italian joint from Hogsalt Hospitality has earned back-to-back Bib Gourmand awards for its delicious renditions of saucy Italian American classics. Start with an order of the rustic fennel bread before carb loading on house-made pastas like spicy vodka rigatoni, black truffle bucatini, and the lasagna Bolognese rotolo. Save room for dessert because the cannoncini is not to be missed.
Successfully opening a restaurant in 2020 is a big deal. Being named one of the best restaurants in America by food critics is an even bigger deal. Evette’s did both. Evette’s comes from first-generation Lebanese American chef Mitchell AbouJamra, who named the restaurant after his grandmother. Here, he brings together Lebanese and Mexican flavors and culinary traditions. If you choose to order the tacos (as you should), go for the grilled halloumi and spit-roasted chicken shawarma versions.
This popular Lakeview spot offers a rotating roster of craft beers paired with some of the best pizza and pub fare around. Roebuck, which is located right next door to DryHop, serves up neo-Neapolitan pizzas topped with everything from tomato and basil to pistachio and lemon. The Standard Bearer, with soppressata, pickled jalapeños, and a honey drizzle, has been one of the most popular pies from the start.
Sister venue to DryHop Brewers, Corridor Brewery & Provisions specializes in brews and farmhouse fare. Both breweries offer expertly made award-winning beers, but while DryHop focuses on hop-centric ales, Corridor highlights Belgian-style ales. When it comes to food, the menu is full of gastropub-type dishes featuring locally sourced ingredients. The fried cauliflower and cheese curds appetizer is where it’s at.
With four locations scattered around the Chicagoland area, Uncle Remus has established itself as a fried chicken destination in the Midwest. Since 1963, this place has been serving up expertly seasoned fried chicken dressed with their signature sweet-and-tangy mild sauce. For the crispiest chicken, get the sauce on the side and dump it on when your order arrives.
Parson’s Chicken & Fish has been crushing it since opening in 2013. Today, Parson’s continues to win over Chicagoans with chef Hunter Moore’s excellent fried chicken. If you feel the need to order more fried things, the hush puppies won’t disappoint, and Parson’s famous bottled negroni slushy is a must with every order.
Since opening in 2010, this River North gastropub from Hogsalt Hospitality (Au Cheval, Doughnut Vault) has earned many awards for its modern tavern fare. On the menu, you’ll find a near-exact replica of the famous Au Cheval burger as well as excellent house-made pastas. There’s only one steak on the menu — the coal-fired rib eye — but it just so happens to be one of the best steaks in the city.
In 1997, Hugo’s Frog Bar & Fish House opened its doors in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood right next to sister restaurant Gibsons. In addition to serving Gibsons steaks, Hugo’s menu also features a premier selection of seafood that’s flown in fresh daily from the East and West coasts. The ordering move here is the filet mignon sliders, indulgently topped with maître d’hôtel butter.
This Italian-inspired retreat in Logan Square whisks taste buds to the boot with a menu of upscale Roman comfort foods. Freshly made pastas are the star here, so be sure to try the orecchiette di cacio e pepe or the bucatini alla carbonara. Testaccio also makes good use of the wood-burning oven that was left behind by the building’s former tenant, so you’ll also want to check out the seasonally rotating selection of entrées on the menu under “Forno a Legna.”
This well-loved Italian restaurant in East Lakeview is known for its seasonally changing lineup of shareable plates that pay homage to chef-owner Giuseppe Scurato’s Sicilian heritage. Honoring the traditions of Italian cooking, Ceres’ Table crafts a menu of rustic yet elegant Italian dishes made using only the freshest ingredients sourced from local farmers.
This luxe steakhouse in the Loop serves some of the best steaks in the city. You’ll find only Linz Heritage USDA Prime Black Angus steaks here, which are dry-aged on-site in a Himalayan salt-lined aging room to further enhance the natural flavors of the beef. Beyond steak, you don’t want to miss the house-flared thick-cut bacon appetizer with pork belly coated in a winning combination of black pepper, maple syrup, and dark chocolate.
Top Chef alum Fabio Viviani makes everything from scratch at this modern Italian powerhouse in River North. Chief among Viviani’s refined menu are the house-made pastas. You can’t go wrong with the gnocchi with truffle cream, crispy pancetta, and fried sage, or the squid ink linguine with spicy lobster cream and a grilled lobster tail.
Located in the basement of modern Japanese spot Momotaro, The Izakaya features a more casual menu inspired by Tokyo’s street-food scene. The Momo Royale burger with miso mayo on a house-made bao bun, the uni pasta with rock shrimp, and the tuna donburi are just a few of The Izakaya’s outstanding dishes that showcase its playful takes on Japanese cuisine.
For the past decade, En Hakkore has ranked as one of the best Korean restaurants in Chicago. This Bucktown spot is known for its creative renditions of Korean classics, including the restaurant’s signature paratha taco, which seamlessly fuses Korean, Mexican, and Indian cuisines. En Hakkore also has a second location in Wicker Park — En Hakkore 2.0 — that does sushi burritos and poke bowls.
Logan Square’s Lonesome Rose dishes up a menu of Mexican and Tex-Mex favorites with modern twists alongside excellent cocktails. Start with an order of the guacamole and the chile con queso before moving on to tacos. The beer-battered Baja fish tacos here rank among the best in town and will transport you to the West Coast with just one bite. Don’t overlook those bottled margaritas for two.
Since opening in 2010, this Logan Square gastropub has continued to hone its nose-to-tail, farm-to-table approach. The kitchen’s contemporary takes on traditional Midwestern fare have also earned Longman & Eagle a spot on Michelin’s Bib Gourmand list for the past several years. The brunch and dinner menus change often, but expect anything from wild boar sloppy joes to vegan cashew “sour cream” and onion dip.
This modern Mexican taco slinger from One Off Hospitality (Avec, Publican Quality Meats) is a Chicago icon. Both the OG in Wicker Park and the newer Wrigleyville location have become go-tos for excellent guac, refreshing margs, and tacos made with hand-pressed tortillas. Go-tos are the crispy pork belly tacos with tomato-guajillo salsa and the beer-battered fish tacos with chipotle mayo and cabbage slaw.
This casual Croatian cafe in River North serves a short menu of healthy-ish breakfast and lunch dishes. For breakfast, Doma’s ćevapi, a sandwich of beef sausages and flatbread served with salted clotted cream and roasted pepper-eggplant spread, is the hangover cure you’ve been looking for. For lunch, omnivores should opt for Brato’s Turkey Sando, while vegetarians will love Kata’s Klub, with roasted butternut squash, avocado, and house-made tahini slaw.
What began as an extension of a pizza operation that started inside West Loop bar Lone Wolf has become much more than just a spin-off. Today, Pizza Lobo’s classic New York-style crust and creative topping combos have deemed it one of Chicago’s best pie shops. On the menu, you’ll find red options like the Amatrice’ Yo-self (roasted tomato, Calabrian chile, and pancetta) and white pies like the Bee’s Knees (garlic oil, pickled cherry peppers, and hot honey).
At this vegan Jewish deli, husband-wife team Andy and Gina Kalish re-create a whole menu of Ashkenazi classics sans meat. House-made bagels on offer include traditional and gluten-free versions, with flavors like Mish Mosh (read: everything), and salt and poppy seed. For something savory, order the Shalom bagel sandwich. Looking for sweet? Try the Boker Tov, an open-face bagel sandwich with almond butter, banana, apple, pistachio halva, and a schmear of preserves.
The hallmark of this West Loop restaurant is an all-wood-fired kitchen. On the menu at Leña Brava (which translates to “ferocious firewood”), you’ll find an array of boldly flavored Mexican classics cooked over a live hardwood fire. Standout dishes include the garlic-marinated and wood-oven-roasted Pollo a la Leña, the ember-roasted sweet potato, and, for dessert, the hand-formed wood-oven berry tart with smoked sweet cream ice cream.
A contemporary take on a classic bistro, James Beard-nominated Bistronomic offers modern yet approachable French cuisine that showcases Midwestern elements and seasonal, local, and sustainable ingredients. Bistronomic offers a lunch and dinner menu, but only on the lunch menu can you find the award-winning Le French Burger 2020, topped with house-made country pâté and cognac sauce.
The original location of this Indian-Pakistani spot has been a favorite on Chicago’s Devon Avenue (aka Little India) since it first opened in the early ’90s. Today, Ghareeb Nawaz has multiple locations in the Chicagoland area that all serve up hearty portions of authentic Indian specialties for low prices; even after raising prices due to inflation, most menu items still ring up around $10.
This West Loop coffee shop is the first in the U.S. from world-renowned barista Hiroshi Sawada. While Sawada’s reputation is international, the coffee here is locally roasted. The menu features a bevy of espresso- and matcha-based beverages, plus a selection of doughnuts from Doughnut Vault. Sawada’s specialty is the silky-smooth, high-octane Military Latte, a blend of espresso, matcha, vanilla, milk, and cocoa powder.
The world’s first two-Michelin-starred brewery, Moody Tongue is known for its award-winning chef-driven beers created by ultra-talented brewmaster Jared Rouben. Besides top-notch brews, you should also plan on ordering a slice of Moody Tongue’s famous German chocolate cake, which features 12 layers of cake, buttercream, dark chocolate ganache, espresso cheesecake, and German chocolate filling with toasted pecans and coconut caramel.
The Bar at Moody Tongue by Jordan Balderas
Alla Vita by Boka Restaurant Group
The Izakaya at Momotaro by Boka Restaurant Group
Doma by Sarah Crowley
Urbanbelly by Emma McGregor