Pass the plates around at these homestyle Chicago restaurants

Sometimes you need a break from healthy eating and you crave some good ol' homestyle cooking. Whether it's fried chicken, mac ‘n cheese or a big heaping cinnamon roll, you can find Chicago restaurants to satisfy you.

Chicagoans love their soul food, so Wishbone tops our list for its fun atmosphere and delicious food. Fans can’t get enough of BJ’s Market and Bakery catfish and peach cobbler. And a newcomer on the scene, Luella's Southern Kitchen, will wow you with dishes like their BBQ Brisket Mac and Cheese.

If you don't mind the wait, Honey Butter Fried Chicken has amazing chicken - but also a long line that snakes  around the block. Others prefer their friend chicken served with waffles from places like Stanley’s Kitchen & Tap.

Long-time staples like Ann Sather’s brings people out for homestyle breakfasts, including their famous cinnamon buns. And Big Jones has a big place in our heart for its modern take of Southern cuisine.



Twin Anchors is a Chicago tradition that locals love to talk about. The baby back ribs are the main attraction and draw rave reviews from just about everyone who's ever tasted them. The bar is located in a historic building, and it's been open...  Read More



Ready for some carbs? This chain is one of the best places in Chicago to get them. The heaping platters of pasta have made this bustling restaurant - which has several locations around the city and suburbs - a longtime favorite for those who...  Read More

Lake View
Ann Sather's


Ann Sather's offers Swedish and American breakfast favorites, including unrivaled cinnamon rolls that people speak of with solemn reverence. The Swedish pancakes are thin and full of flavorful lingonberries. Every meal comes with a soup or two...  Read More



Blame it on the weather, but Chicago is not populated by many Southerners. You'll meet plenty of folk from north of the Mason-Dixon Line, but rare is the Georgian, Carolinian or Louisianan. That leaves chef Paul Fehribach (only from as far south...  Read More



People come from all over the city and suburbs to this southside soul food gem. Perhaps the best time to visit is on Sunday, when you can eat from their buffet. It teams with foods like catfish, chicken, turkey, chicken, beef ribs, breaded...  Read More

Gold Coast


You could make a meal out of their bacon cheddar hush puppies. But then you'd miss out on all of the other delicious dishes Chef Art Smith has created, including excellent barbecued meats (served with a variety of sauces), succulent ribs...  Read More

Luella's Southern Kitchen
Photo courtesy of Photo by Jamie Bartosch


Phenomenal Southern and soul food dishes - like Shrimp and Grits, macaroni and cheese, fried chicken and waffles, and catfish tacos - are served in this small, restaurant along busy Lincoln Avenue. The restaurant is named for Chef Darnell Reed's...  Read More



Honey Butter Fried Chicken serves us exactly what its namesake suggests: fried chicken served with honey butter. The ambiance is friendly and inviting once you make it past the doors. The decor is urban without being industrial, vintage without...  Read More

Market District


Don't come here for health food! Come for Southern-style soul food, full of flavor and served in a casual, relaxed environment. The quirky, funky warehouse-style space (abstract paintings of chickens and eggs adorn the walls) offers breakfast on...  Read More


Meet Jamie Bartosch

Jamie Bartosch is a lifelong Chicagoan who thinks her hometown is the greatest city in the world. She is an award-winning newspaper reporter, a freelance travel writer, and the mother of two great kids.