Black-Owned Restaurants in Houston to Try Out

Houston is among the most diverse cities in the United States, and black-owned restaurants are among the best. From one end of Houston to the other, black-owned restaurants, food trucks, pubs, and lounges serve some of the best food H-City offers. So if you are looking for the best black-owned restaurants in Houston to visit when you are hungry, here are a few spots to check out. From spots that specialize in everything from BBQ to others that combine flavors from different cultures. 

1. Cool Runnings Jamaican Grill

Cool Runnings Jamaican Grill is the place to go if you want to try high-quality island cuisine. Expect soft oxtail and curried goat that split up with the slightest touch, as well as ocean-fresh delicacies like ackee and saltfish. 

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Terron Henry, the chef-owner, is a native of Jamaica, which explains why their well-seasoned and marinated Jamaican jerk chicken is the most popular meal on the menu. We recommend bringing a friend or two so you can try different dishes on the menu. 

Address: 8270 West Bellfort Houston, Texas 77071 

Location: Cool Runnings Jamaican Grill

Opening Hours: Monday to Thursday 8 am–10 pm

                            Friday to Saturday 8 am–11 pm

                            Sundays 10 am–10 pm

2. Ray’s BBQ Shack

Rayford “Ray” S. owned and operated a BBQ food truck outside of nightclubs back in the 1980s. The Ray’s BBQ Shank now sits along Old Spanish Trail, serving East Texas-style Lott Links customers, Chicago-style Rib Tips, 14-hour Slow-smoked Brisket, and Thursday-only Smoked Oxtails with rice, smoked mac & cheese, and fried corn on the cob.

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Besides, you can order grilled veggies that come with 2 sides. The last time I went to dine at Ray’s BBQ Shank, the fried corn was tasty and had a batter on top. The rib tips were amazingly tender. I also had top-notch corn salad.

Address: 3929 Old Spanish Trail Houston, Texas 77021

Location: Ray’s BBQ Shank

Opening Hours: 11 am–8 pm, Mondays & Tuesdays 11 am–6 pm, closed on Sundays

3. Blue Nile Restaurant

Blue Nile restaurant has been in operation since 1994. This Ethiopian cuisine is vibrant and unique. The restaurant allows you to experience pure and authentic food from the Horn of Africa there. The restaurant’s menu includes classics such as Fitfit and Shiro Wot, and it promotes Ethiopian heritage by serving family-size quantities and eating with your hands.

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Besides, you can order light snacks from the appetizer and beverage menu, something robust from the vegetarian menu, or anything from the meat and fish menu. Also, you can order the well-known delicious spongy Injera bread.

Address: 3030 Audley St, Suite A Houston, TX 77098

Location:  Blue Nile Restaurant

Opening Hours: 11 am–10 pm

4. Gatlin’s BBQ Restaurant

Gatlin’s BBQ is one of the black-owned restaurants in Houston that you need to try out when in Houston. For a decade, the family-owned and operated barbeque restaurant has been serving genuinely mouthwatering meats. You can try out Gatlin’s new morning menu when deciding which delicious dish and sandwich to eat.

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Gatlin’s BBQ’s main menu includes; grilled Calamari, Mac and cheese, Raleigh served with coleslaw, barbecue sauce, pickles on a sesame roll, and Milanese with

fried chicken, tomato, lettuce, and mayo on focaccia, to mention a few.

Address: 3510 Ella Blvd Bldg C Ste A, Houston, TX 77018, U.S

Location: Gatlin’s BBQ Restaurant

Opening Hours: 7 am–6 pm (closed on Sundays)

5. Lucille’s Southern Restaurant

The restaurant became more famous after the President of the United States, Joe Biden, held a private meeting with George Floyd’s family. On the other hand, the restaurant was named after Chris Williams’ great-grandmother, Lucille B. Smith (chef/owner), a black businesswoman, chef, inventor, educator, and food corporation founder.

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Lucille’s restaurant’s menu includes Butcher Burger, buttery grits, a surplus of chicken and seafood sandwiches, and a roasted hen with baked mac, cheese, catfish, and Chili Biscuits, to mention a few. When you are there, try the famous Chili Biscuits.

Address: 5512 La Branch St, Houston, TX 77004, U.S

Location: Lucille’s Southern Restaurant 

Opening Hours: 11 am–9 pm, closed on Mondays

6. Esther’s Cajun Café

Esther (well-known as the Queen) opened her first location in Independence Heights, Texas, in 2008, with soulful recipes passed down from her lovely mother, grandmother, and even great-grandmother. Esther’s Cajun Cafe became known across Houston for serving some of the most authentic Cajun fried chicken, Louisiana-style gumbo, and seafood étouffée.

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Esther recently opened a new location on North Shepherd in February 2022. It serves the same Cajun and Soul Food but has a much bigger space, a full-service bar, extended hours, and a walk-up service window. Try the delicious Cajun fried chicken.

Address: 5007 N Shepherd Dr, Houston, TX 77018, United States

Location: Esther’s Cajun Café

Opening Hours: 11 am–8 pm

7. Taste Bar + Kitchen Restaurant

Taste Bar and Kitchen is Montrose’s best brunch spot for many. The beautiful thing is, when there, you might see chef Don Bowie churning up exquisite breakfast buffets and cocktails so refreshing that you will be wondering how you can replicate them at home.

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Taste Bar + Kitchen’s menu includes syrupy Chicken & Waffles, gouda-based Mac and Cheese; Lamb Chops paired with eggs, Grits topped with your choice of blackened catfish or sautéed shrimp, and other mouthwatering delicacies. 

Address: 3015 Bagby Street, Houston, TX 77006, United States

Location: Taste Bar + Kitchen

Opening Hours: 11 am–11 pm, (Fridays & Saturdays 11 am–2 am)

8. Mico’s Hot Chicken Restaurant

Mico’s Hot Chicken started as a food truck. This is after “Mico” Frydenlund realized the absence of true Nashville-style fried chicken in Houston. Mico, her husband, and business partner Chris started this hot bird idea in 2019. The business became a success so quickly that they could open a physical location not long after.

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 Mico’s recipe is a spin on the legendary Prince’s Hot Chicken, and it’s available in the form of fiery sandwich overflowing with their special sauce and coleslaw, crispy tenders, cheese, and waffle cut fries dressed with spicy chopped fried chicken. Besides, you can try the tangy house ranch garnishing, or the hot honey drizzled on everything from vanilla ice cream to sandwiches.

Address: 1603 N Durham Dr, Houston, TX 77008, United States

Location: Mico’s Hot Chicken

Opening Hours: 10:30 am–9:30 pm

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