Ann Arbor has an incredibly diverse and delicious food scene. In fact, you can get just about anything you’re craving here, whether that’s pub food, global flavors, American classics or casual eateries. Don’t believe us? Check out our list of the best vegan restaurants, romantic date night spots, breweries and brunch spots in the area! Just be sure to note their COVID-19 policies as they may change.
So whether you’re just visiting or you’re a local who wants to enjoy everything the A2 food scene has to offer—we’ve rounded up some of the best breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks and desserts in the area that you just have to try. Read on and let us know in the comments which dish you’re planning to try first!
Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner | Snacks + Appetizers | Desserts
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You haven’t lived until you’ve visited the Fleetwood Diner at 2 a.m. for some Hippie Hash. The bottom layer is a generous portion of their homemade hash browns. Next, they top the hash browns with grilled green peppers, onions, tomatoes, broccoli and mushrooms. Then the entire dish gets topped with feta cheese to make the most delicious, melty hash you’ve ever had.
Angelo’s offers incredible homemade French toast that feels like a little piece of heaven. Order yours with white bread, raisin bread or deep-fried and smothered with strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream!
Scrambled eggs, black beans, avocado, aged white cheddar and housemade salsa all in a whole wheat tortilla? We honestly can’t think of a better breakfast!
Photo courtesy of MD Bagel Fragel
Sure, you’ve heard of bagels, but what about the iconic “Fragel”? This incredible breakfast treat is a raisin packed dough, deep-fried and covered in cinnamon sugar. Just be sure to keep an eye on MD Bagel Fragel’s Facebook page the next time you have a hankering because they sell out quickly every morning.
Sometimes you just want something greasy and delicious for breakfast. When that happens, head to the Northside Grill for a Country Scramble—two biscuits layered with sauteed onions, green peppers, sausage, tomatoes and scrambled eggs all topped with sausage gravy.
This Cuban-inspired burger is one of the most popular dishes in all of Southeast Michigan—for a good reason! The frita is a Cuban spin on a traditional hamburger, served on a soft egg bun and topped with crispy fries along with any other toppings you could ever want, including avocado, tropical slaw, cilantro-lime salsa or a sunny-side-up egg.
Photo courtesy of Anne Kellogg via Zingerman’s Deli
Eating a Reuben from Zingerman’s Deli is an Ann Arbor rite of passage. Not only do we love this sandwich filled with fresh corned beef, house-made Russian dressing, Switzerland Swiss cheese and sauerkraut served on Jewish rye bread—but President Barack Obama loved it too when he visited the area in 2014.
You just can’t go wrong with the falafel at A2’s Jerusalem Garden. You can get a small plate or a large (trust us, you’ll want the large) which comes with three patties mixed with ground chickpeas, parsley, onions, jalapenos and spices fried in soybean oil and accompanied by hummus and pickled turnips.
Ray’s Red Hots carts are a staple at any local event throughout the year. It just wouldn’t be summer in A2 without eating a juicy Red Hot from Ray’s outside under the hot sun. This 100% Michigan Angus Beef dog is in a natural casing served on a Poppyseed bun, their specialty. Click here to see where they will be setting up shop all across the area this month.
Lobster Bisque at Le Dog
At first glance, Le Dog looks like a bare-bones hot dog stand on Liberty Street. But this tiny shack produces some of the best soup in the entire city. And our favorite has to be the lobster bisque, which is only available on Thursdays and Fridays. We also recommend that you pay an extra dollar for your choice of Zingerman’s bread for dipping. Le Dog announced in April that they will be closed throughout the pandemic, so make sure to frequent their website to stay updated on any reopening information. Trust us, the wait will be worth it!
Deep Dish Pizza from Anthony’s
Anthony’s has been specializing in Chicago style deep dish pizza since 1988—so you can bet that they have their recipe down. Get this delicious pizza pie topped with anything under the sun. And if you have any gluten-free friends, no problem! They are now offering a special, gluten-free crust.
All of Slurping Turtle’s ramen is absolutely delicious, but at some point, you have to try their Tan Tan Men Ramen—a favorite of many Ann Arborites. This spicy ramen features pork belly, meatballs, miso pork, bean sprouts, bok choy, scallions, chili flakes, chili oil and sesame seeds.
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What can we say—Ann Arbor loves pizza! But when you’re looking for an elevated take on the doughy favorite, head to Mani Osteria for one of their wood-fired pies. They have several on the menu, from the traditional Margherita to an arugula and prosciutto rendition, but no matter what you choose you’re sure to be pleased.
Monahans is a seafood market, selling fresh seafood from all over the world like New England cod, Florida red snapper, Maryland soft shell crabs and wild Alaskan king salmon. In addition to the market, they also serve delicious seafood dishes—like their famed fish and chips made up of beer-battered North Atlantic pollack with hand-cut fries.
Ayeses’ dishes are always changing depending on what they can get fresh at the market, so you may not always be able to find the Pepper Lamb Dolma and Chicken that is a local favorite (don’t worry though, everything on the menu is delicious!). But if you happen into the restaurant on a day when they’re serving this incredible dish—just go ahead and order it, we promise you won’t be disappointed.
Snacks & Appetizers
Truffle is all the rage these days, but Jolly Pumpkin was using it before it was cool. Their truffle fries are a genius snack made up of crisp shoestring fries tossed in truffled sea salt and served with a side of rosemary aioli. They pair perfectly with a burger and any of Jolly Pumpkin’s signature beers.
It’s not a huge surprise that a place called “The Pretzel Bell” would have great soft pretzels. But if you haven’t tried one yet—what are you doing with your life? This pillowy pretzel comes with warm cheese dip, honey mustard or whole grain mustard, and is perfect for sharing.
Pesto Waffle Fries at Ashley’s
There’s just something about a good waffle fry that gets us excited! And if you’re searching for the best in A2, look no further than Ashley’s, an Irish bar offering some of the best beer and cocktails in the area. Their waffle cut fries are topped with basil pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, parmesan cheese and served with kalamata olive aioli.
Photo courtesy of The Last Word
We can’t think of a better accompaniment to The Last Word’s craft cocktails than their delicious charcuterie plates. They offer both Italian and Spanish selections that include charcuterie like Porchetta, Prosciutto, Soppressata, Jason Serrano, Lomo, Dry Cured Chorizo and more. Add one to your order next time you’re placing an order of to-go cocktails!
Taste Kitchen has a huge offering of cold and hot appetizers and shareable plates for you to enjoy. Our favorite has to be the duck tacos that are topped with pickled cabbage, garlic aioli and guacamole all wrapped up in a warm corn tortilla. Yum!
A muffin paired with frozen yogurt isn’t your everyday run of the mill dessert—but we know you’ll love it! It’s a hot split bran muffin filled with your choice of frozen yogurt, creating a healthy-ish combination we never thought could taste so delicious.
Photo courtesy of Moon Cafe
The Moon Cafe is a local hotspot serving up authentic Korean cuisine and frozen yogurt! If you can only get one thing, make it the Collider—their version of a Dairy Queen Blizzard. Start with your favorite flavor of frozen yogurt and then pick from their extensive menu of mix-ins and toppings that includes nuts, crushed cookies, rainbow sprinkles, cereal, chocolate sauce and fresh fruit.
Any of White Lotus Farms’ baked goods could be a perfect dessert from their Morning Buns to their filled croissants. But if you can get them before they are all gone for the day, their Oh!s are an absolute must-try. A hybrid of a croissant and a doughnut these unbelievably delicious pastries come in chocolate ganache and lemon creme flavors.
Zingerman’s Bakehouse Tokaji Cream Cake is a modern pairing of traditional Hungarian sweet wine and pastry. This elegant, light, fresh cake features Tokaji wine, a little sugar, Guernsey whipping cream layered with vanilla chiffon cake and fresh raspberries. It’s only available in June and July, but we promise it’s worth the wait!
We just couldn’t create a list of Ann Arbor’s iconic dishes without including at least one selection from the Pastry Peddler, A2’s favorite bakery. They are only open 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Saturday, so you’ll have to enjoy an early dessert or pick them up to enjoy a few hours later. Choose one of their many delicious mini puffs, danishes, sticky buns or cookies. Or if you’re looking for something simple and tasty, order one of their buttery croissants which you can get filled with chocolate, topped with almonds or beautifully plain.
What would you add?
Did we miss your favorite Ann Arbor dish? Let us know in the comments!
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