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Best Places to Eat in Tempe, Arizona: 22 Delicious Restaurants (including a Spice Trail!)

Best Places to Eat in Tempe, Arizona: 22 Delicious Restaurants (including a Spice Trail!)

Looking for places to eat in Tempe, Arizona? You can’t go wrong with these picks!

Tempe has a surprisingly savory food scene, thanks in large part to the ASU Tempe campus. 

There are so many different students from around the world enrolled, and their cuisines are reflected in local restaurants that have found an eager home for their menu offerings. 

From informal cafes to 5-star restaurants, here are the best places to eat in Tempe, Arizona during your next visit!

For Breakfast

Ham, egg and cheese on toast

1. Crêpe Bar

Treat yourself to French crepes with a twist. There are savory, sweet and vegan options available. You can’t go wrong with the “Papa K” or “First Time.” They’re open till 2pm.  

2. Snooze an A.M. Eatery 

This restaurant is in the heart of downtown Tempe. They serve several variations of Eggs Benedict, large smoothies and satisfying meals like shrimp and grits or a Croque Madame

3. Daily Jam

With sandwiches, omelettes, southwest inspired dishes and fresh-squeezed juice, the Daily Jam is a popular spot for brunch. There’s indoor and outdoor seating available.

4. Sunny’s Diner

If you’re with a group and want large portions and a wide variety at reasonable prices, Sunny’s is the place to go. They have hearty items like a biscuit volcano with gravy, cheese, jalapeño and chorizo. 

For Lunch 

Hamburger and salad

5. Singh Meadows 

This is a unique location that has a produce market, cafe with fresh food options and an expansive outdoor area where you can eat, relax and read a book on loan.  

6. Positano South Tempe

Looking for a Mad Men-style lunch? Enjoy the lavish chandeliers and mid-century furniture at Positano South Tempe. A good bruschetta and bottle of wine makes everything seem grand! 

7. Cornish Pasty Co

This informal eatery serves traditional Cornish pasties with flavors like “Shepard’s pie” and “Scotch Egg.” They also have a wide selection of craft beers. 

8. Yupha’s Thai Kitchen

A favorite for vegetarians, this Thai restaurant offers many Pad Thai options and brings the flavor with garnishes like fried tofu. Don’t feel left out, meat lovers — you can add a protein to any dish.

For Dinner

Trout topped with dill

9. House of Tricks 

House of tricks is an award-winning restaurant in a unique setting. They have two adjacent renovated houses as the dining room and the yard space of both converted into an outdoor dining area.

The bar serves craft cocktails that are carefully executed and the dinner menu includes high-end dishes like panic crusted grouper and chile rubbed filet mignon. 

10. Ghost Ranch

*Note, this restaurant is temporarily closed until further notice.

Are you in the mood for authentic Mexican food in a lively atmosphere? You can have all the guacamole and tacos you’re craving at Ghost Ranch, along with options like a Cowboy steak (14 ounce prime ribeye) and rainbow trout. 

11. Top of the Rock

If you’re looking for the ultimate date night, this is it. Perched atop of a butte overlooking the desert landscape, Top of the Rock is the perfect place to catch the sunset and treat yourself to world-class cuisine.

12. Culinary Dropout 

This is a funky restaurant and bar with live music from local bands. The menu includes new takes on classic items, like a provolone pretzel bites fondue and BBQ pork belly nachos. 

For Drinks 

Colorful cocktails

13. Thirsty Lion Gastropub 

Located in Tempe Marketplace, Thirsty Lion Gastropub is a nice sports bar with flat screen TV’s throughout. It’s the place to be for big celebrations like football games and St. Paddy’s day.

14. Social Hall 

With pub games, fire pits, hammock swings and signature cocktails, you’ll come for a drink at Social Hall and never want to leave. 

15. Rúla Búla Irish Pub 

Serving up pints of beer and plenty of whisky, this Irish pub is kind of a big deal. It was featured in Tricked, a fantasy novel by Kevin Hearne, and draws in fans of the book series on a daily basis. 


For Dessert 

Baked goods on display

Photo source:

16. Tracy Dempsey Originals

Cakes, tarts, puddings, homemade ice creams, pastries and shared space with a wine shop make Tracy Dempsey one of the best places to feed your sweet tooth while in Tempe. 

17. Insomnia Cookies

Looking for cookies at midnight? Insomnia cookies is open till 3am for when you get a late-night craving. 

18. Yum AF Bakery 

Gluten free, dairy free, egg free, nut free, vegan and still delicious? This is one of Tempe’s up and coming businesses and a regular at the 6th Street Market.  

Bonus: Spice Trail

Dumplings in a tin bowl

19. Haji Baba 

This is a Middle Eastern grocery store and restaurant serving items like kebabs, gyros and baklava. While you’re there, try the homemade rose water lemonade.

20. The Dhaba 

This is an Indian market with on-site restaurant. Try items like the chicken tikka masala and lamb curry. You can choose your spice level from 1-10; choose wisely!

21. Chou’s Kitchen 

Tucked away in a strip mall, this is the last place you’d expect to find authentic Chinese food. Try the juicy steamed dumplings and Chinese clay pot dishes — they’re both tasty and IG-friendly. 

22. Curry Corner 

Curry Corner is a Pakistani restaurant with diverse options. You can’t go wrong with options like naan bread, tandoori wings and goat biryani. There are also vegetarian dishes available. 


These are just some of the best places to eat in Tempe. Did your favorite restaurant make the list? 

Till next time, safe travels!

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Sage Scott

Saturday 21st of March 2020

My sister lives in Phoenix, so not only do I visit that area a lot, but we're always looking for great new local places to try. Thanks for seeding my list for my next trip west!