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13 Most Unique Black-Owned Restaurants In Chicago

13 Most Unique Black-Owned Restaurants In Chicago
Written by Publishing Team

When people visit the Windy City, the first things they want to eat are deep-dish pizza, hot dogs, and Garrett popcorn. While these are all delicious options, there are plenty of cuisines available for every foodie to choose from, including the great black-owned Chicago restaurants.

Last year during quarantine, I came across food blogger Jeremy Joyce’s Black People Eats Instagram page. Every day he introduces a new black-owned restaurant located in the Chicagoland area. The variety was endless, from vegetarian, Ethiopian, and Caribbean foods to Southern comfort foods. His videos were informative and entertaining, and everything he tried made my mouth water. I knew I had to try them myself.

There are more than 115 black-owned restaurants in the Chicagoland area. While it will take some time to visit them all, here is a list, in no particular order, of my favorite restaurants and I can’t wait to go to the unique black-owned restaurants in Chicago.

Friistyle, a black-owned restaurant in Chicago.
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1. Freestyle

Friistyle is a unique Chicago take on pomme frites. Executive Chef Chuck Gee has created Friesel’s signature sauce, the bojeto, a touch of the mild barbecue sauce that is the locals’ favorite fries condiment.

The delicious French fries come with your choice of chicken, salmon, lamb, lobster or vegetables. If you enjoy salmon, I recommend my favorite toppings: Jerk Salmon Frite. It comes with peeled salmon fillets, dill aioli, and mango salsa on a bed of fresh pom-pom frites.

2. South Cleo on the cottage

After opening in 2019, Michelin Guide listed Cleo’s Southern on Cottage As one of the top five new restaurants in Chicago to visit.

Cleo describes their food as having a Creole twist on Southern classics served in a whitewashed setting. The menu changes daily, but there are staples on the menu, such as wild-caught Scottish salmon prepared with habanero mango. This dish looks spicy and is the first thing I would like to try when I visit. Since the menu changes daily, I suggest ordering one of the creative specialty dishes listed under Some Newbies.

Vegetarian Hot Dog Box Hot Dog is a black owned restaurant in Chicago.
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3. Hot dog box

Bobby Morelli and his nine-year-old daughter Brooklyn work together to create the best gourmet sausage in Chicago. Hot Dog Box The most famous dog is the filet minion. Patrons can substitute chicken, turkey, and vegetarian dogs for some specials. If you’re not feeling adventurous, an all-Chicago-style traditional Vienna hot dog (no ketchup!) is a staple on the menu.

The list of offers changes daily. One of my daughters and I ordered a Juneteenth Limited Edition Sweet Potato Jam Wagyu Filet Mignon Steak Dog. The dog came with fresh potato spirals, butter green leaf lettuce, smoked hickory bacon crumble, and maple chipotle mustard. My dog ​​was vegan style, but equally delicious.

Hot Dog Box operates in a unique area of ​​Chicago’s first shipping container market in the Bronzeville neighborhood. Containers are modified to each business’s specifications to mimic any normal brick-and-mortar storefront.

The market has limited outside seating so I suggest ordering online and enjoying your dogs in your car.

Editor’s Note: Still Not Sold? Here’s why you need to try a Chicago-style hot dog at least once in your life.

4. Demira Ethiopian Restaurant

Tygest Reda, owner of Demera Ethiopian Restaurant, was born and raised in Ethiopia and has lived in Chicago for over 20 years. In 2007, she opened a restaurant serving traditional Ethiopian cuisine, hand-eaten meals in family-style portions. Demera Doro Wout (spicy) is made with Amish chicken and Berber spices. Served with hard boiled eggs guilt (farm cheese), and a side of vegetables. If you have room for dessert, try the Ethiopian-style tiramisu with lady fingers soaked in boma and homemade brandy.

Food from Can't Believe It's Not Meat, a black-owned Chicago restaurant.
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5. I can’t believe it’s not meat

I can’t believe it’s not meat It recreates many of my childhood favorites like pizza pies and Italian beef, but it’s all vegan. Chef Laricia Chandler Baker enjoys creating unique dishes without meat. I am allergic to shellfish. I ordered the Po’boy vegan shrimp sandwich with all the flavor and no consequence.

6. Amici Restaurant & Cafe

Janelle R, owner and Dessert Extraordinaire, started making liquor-filled cupcakes in her New York City apartment for family and friends. After receiving more and more requests from referrals, Janelle decided to return to her hometown, Chicago, and opened Emeche Cakery and Café. The name Emeche means drunk In French and in honor of the cupcake that started it all. The menu has many delicious options, including the bourbon pecan pound cake and the mini pineapple cake. While Emeche is known for its desserts, it also serves breakfast and lunch.

Majani Soulful Vegan Cuisine, a black-owned restaurant in Chicago.
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7. Free spiritual vegetarian cuisine

The owners of Majani Soulful Vegan Cuisine are a husband and wife team who have been vegetarians for 20 years. The couple recreates Southern favorites into vegetarian options. One of my favorite dishes is the cauliflower wings roast. When planning your visit to Majani, there are three locations to choose from in Chicago: South Shore, Pullman, and the South Loop.

LiteHouse Whole Food Grill, a black-owned restaurant in Chicago.
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8. Lighthouse Grill for full meals

Lighthouse Whole Food Grill It offers healthy food and vegetarian options. You begin by selecting your choice of protein and pairing it with a fettuccine, salad, burrito, or wrap. Lighthouse Wholefood Grill also serves a variety of signature pizzas. It was a tough decision, but I chose jerk salmon over the fettuccine.

9. Jars from Jasman

After helping a friend make sweets for his restaurants, Jasiman started selling sweets outside his home. jar for jamesman It sells fancy desserts in 17 flavors of pudding, cobbler, and other baked goods. All sweets can be ordered online and picked up at the South Loop store. When you arrive, you’ll think you’ve taken a wrong turn. Jars from Jasiman are in a refurbished storage unit. The favorite dessert is bananas – with or without bananas.

10. Flavors Bar and Grill

Phlavz Bar & Grill is owned and operated by Phil Simpson and Andrew Bonsu. Simpson began selling food dishes from his home. When he decided to expand the business, he partnered with Bonsu, which provides management guidance. Phlavz is located in two locations, the original one in Chicago on Maxwell Street and one in Orland Park in the southern suburbs. I haven’t visited either location yet, but my order would be the salmon tips with fries. Street parking is available, but the Chicago location is on a busy street. There is a paid parking garage nearby.

11. Gory’s Kitchen

Goree Cuisine Senegalese restaurant serves authentic West African dishes incorporating and influenced by North African, French and Portuguese ingredients. Fish, meat, and vegetables are marinated or stewed in herbs and spices and poured over steamed rice or couscous and eaten with bread.

12. A vegan addict

Owner and chef Bobbie Beaugard-Williams’ mission is to serve up delicious vegan foods without anyone having to give up their favorite comfort foods. vegan addict It is home to vegan cheese slices in Chi Town. With so many guilty pleasures to choose from, Williams has no problem converting customers to “junk food for vegetarians” or satisfying the palate of carnivores.

Sean Michele Homemade Ice Cream, Chicago Black Owned Ice Cream Shop.
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13. Sean Michaels Homemade Ice Cream

Shawn Michelle’s mission is to restore a sense of tradition and teamwork through unique ice cream flavors and baked goods. Vegetarian options are also available.

Must-try items are a one-scoop sundae with lemon pound cake and bourbon butter pecan ice cream.

Sign up for a Shawn Michelle Bonus via text message to receive 5 percent off your first order, and you’ll be notified to buy them one and get one free on the weekend.

Professional Tips

Most of the premium restaurants are cashless and accept all major credit cards. Street parking is easy and available except as mentioned above. Business hours vary. Check restaurant websites, Instagram or Facebook pages for updates, or call before you go.

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