Chicago is known for its diverse food scene. From deep-dish pizza to hot dogs, the Windy City has a lot to offer. One of the most popular dishes among locals and visitors alike is shawarma.
This Middle Eastern dish is made from marinated meat (usually chicken or beef) that is cooked on a rotating spit and then sliced into thin pieces. It is typically served in a pita bread with a variety of toppings, including hummus, tahini, and vegetables.
If you're looking for the best shawarma in Chicago, you've come to the right place. We've scoured the city to find the top spots for this delicious dish.
Whether you're a longtime fan of shawarma or you're trying it for the first time, these restaurants are sure to satisfy your cravings.
From casual street vendors to upscale restaurants, Chicago has a wide range of options when it comes to shawarma. Some places specialize in traditional Middle Eastern flavors, while others put a unique twist on the dish.
No matter what your preferences are, there's a shawarma spot in Chicago that will leave you feeling satisfied and eager to come back for more. So without further ado, let's dive into the best places for shawarma in the Windy City.
1. Taste of Lebanon Restaurant
Taste of Lebanon Restaurant is a no-frills, counter-serve Lebanese eatery that serves up traditional and delicious shawarma, falafel, and kebabs.
With friendly and helpful staff, this spot is a staple of the neighborhood and offers incredible value for money.
Be sure to bring cash, as they don't accept debit or credit cards.
Highly recommended for anyone looking for authentic Lebanese street food in the area.
2. Cedar Palace
Cedar Palace is a family-owned Mediterranean restaurant that serves up delicious shawarma plates with generous portions.
The seasoning is spot on, making the meat dishes very flavorful and cooked perfectly.
The staff is friendly and welcoming, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. Although the pita bread could have been warmer, the prices are reasonable for the quality of food.
Cedar Palace is a must-visit for anyone looking for authentic Mediterranean cuisine.
3. The Gundis Kurdish Kitchen
The Gundis Kurdish Kitchen is a must-visit for shawarma lovers. This Middle Eastern restaurant offers authentic Kurdish cooking with its own unique spices and flavors.
The food is freshly prepared, incredibly flavored, and presented beautifully. The staff is knowledgeable and accommodating, making the dining experience comfortable and enjoyable.
The menu has halal dishes, and the portions are generous. Reservations are recommended, and the prices are a little high, but the food is worth it.
The Gundis Kurdish Kitchen is a relaxed and stylish place to enjoy shawarma and other Middle Eastern cuisine.
4. Sinya Mediterranean
Sinya Mediterranean is a great option for those craving delicious Mediterranean food. Their chicken kebab and beef shawarma meals are flavorful and tender.
The hummus is some of the best around. The lentil soup is a must-try, and adding chicken shawarma, feta, and fresh squeezed lemon to the soup is highly recommended.
While seating is limited, the service is exceptional, and the cleanliness is top-notch.
With vegan and vegetarian options available, Sinya Mediterranean is a straightforward counter-serve restaurant that is definitely worth checking out.
5. Falafel & Grill
Falafel & Grill is a must-visit for shawarma lovers.
This casual eatery offers a variety of options, including chicken, beef, and gyros loaf shawarma. The kabobs are also worth trying.
The food is fresh, delicious, and comes in generous portions. The staff is friendly, and the service is quick.
The atmosphere is great, and the music adds to the overall experience. This is the spot for authentic Mediterranean cuisine.
6. Hummus Grill Chicago
Hummus Grill Chicago is a Mediterranean restaurant that serves delicious shawarma.
Customers rave about the fresh chicken and beef, as well as the falafel, rice, and hummus. The owner is friendly and the staff is helpful.
The lamb chops plate is recommended by many, and the portion sizes are reasonable. The prices are amazing and the customer service is very good.
The food is authentic and the presentation is vibrant and colorful. Hummus Grill Chicago is definitely worth a visit for anyone craving Mediterranean food.
Galit is a chef-driven Middle Eastern eatery that serves up delicious shawarma and other Mediterranean specialties.
The ambiance is hip and the service is excellent.
The menu features small shareables that allow diners to try a variety of dishes.
While on the pricier side, the quality of the food and the experience make it worth it. Galit is a must-try for anyone looking for upscale Middle Eastern cuisine.
8. Yaba's Food & Middle Eastern Grill
Yaba's Food & Middle Eastern Grill is a hidden gem that offers delicious Middle Eastern food at reasonable prices.
Their chicken shawarma plate has a unique and savory seasoning that is highly recommended. The family that runs the place is very friendly and hospitable, making you feel like you're part of their family.
Vegetarian options are also available, along with other Middle Eastern favorites like gyros and burgers. The lentil soup is a must-try, especially on a cold day.
The restaurant is located inside a small grocery store, offering a no-frills option for a quick and satisfying meal.
Kabobchi is a Middle Eastern restaurant that serves delicious shawarma and other Mediterranean classics in a simple setting.
The food is flavorful and the portions are generous.
The staff is friendly and accommodating, making for a pleasant dining experience.
Kabobchi also offers catering services for events and gatherings. Highly recommended for anyone looking for authentic Middle Eastern cuisine.
10. Sultan's Market
Sultan's Market is a must-visit for shawarma fans. This quick-serve Middle Eastern eatery offers a wide range of flavorful and affordable dishes.
Their meat combo dinner is highly recommended, featuring lamb shawarma, chicken shawarma, and kefta kabob on top of your choice of curry rice or lentil & rice.
Their sides of hummus, tabuli, and hand made pita are also delicious. Don't forget to try their Baklava for dessert.
Although the decoration of the place could be improved, the quality and taste of the food more than makes up for it. For those looking for a healthy and inexpensive meal, Sultan's Market is the perfect option.
11. Pita Pita Mediterranean Grill
Pita Pita Mediterranean Grill is a must-visit spot for anyone who loves shawarma.
The mixed meat entree is a great way to try all their meats, but the chicken shawarma and kebab are particular standouts.
The falafel is also some of the best in the city. The portions are generous and reasonably priced.
The staff is friendly and the restaurant is clean. Don't miss out on this delicious Mediterranean fast casual spot.
12. Dawali Jerusalem Kitchen
Dawali Jerusalem Kitchen is a Middle Eastern restaurant that serves up some seriously delicious shawarma.
The food is fresh and full of flavor, with gluten-free and dairy-free options available. The staff is friendly and efficient, making for a great dining experience.
In addition to the shawarma, the spicy chicken kebab and fries with curry sauce are must-tries.
The atmosphere is welcoming and the prices are reasonable, making this spot a definite go-to for lunch or dinner.
13. Mr. Kabab
Mr. Kabab is a casual eatery that offers some of the best shawarma in town. The food is authentic and full of flavor, with generous portions that won't break the bank.
The staff is friendly and provides quick service, making it an ideal spot for a lunch break or a quick dinner.
The restaurant also offers a variety of other Mediterranean dishes, including kebab sandwiches and salads.
Whether you're a fan of Middle Eastern cuisine or just looking for a delicious meal, Mr. Kabab is definitely worth a visit.
14. LaShuk Street Food
LaShuk Street Food is a Middle Eastern restaurant that serves up delicious shawarma, falafel, and hummus.
The pita bread is fresh and hot, and the meats are perfectly spiced.
The hummus is creamy and flavorful, and the falafels are crispy and crunchy. The staff is friendly and the service is great.
If you're in the mood for some authentic Mediterranean fare, LaShuk Street Food is definitely worth a visit.