After a long day of working hard and fighting traffic, sometimes you just want to curl up with the most delicious comfort food you can find.
From mac and cheese to burgers, ice cream to chicken and waffles — you name it, L.A. has it and does it well.
So whether you’re stressed out or just getting nostalgic over mom’s mashed potatoes, here’s a handy list of where you can head to get your grub on even if it isn’t Throwback Thursday.
1. Beer Belly
This Koreatown bar is famous for its extensive craft beer selection, but also it’s decadent food menu, which includes duck fat fries (seriously). To go with your fries, you can get bacon bacon mac and cheese, a giant hot snickerdoodle, deep fried Oreos, buttermilk fried chicken, and pork cheek chili cheese fries.
2. Pie ‘N Burger
Since 1963, Pie ‘N Burger in Pasadena has been serving up the titular favorites, along with grilled cheese sandwiches, patty melts, chicken pot pie, a complete breakfast menu, and a long list of pie flavors for a yummy dessert.
3. Afters Ice Cream
Located in Long Beach, Pasadena, and Orange County, Afters takes ice cream to a whole other level, they are known for something called the milky bun. Here’s how it works: Pick an ice cream flavor (such as Cookie Monster, Jasmine milk tea, and Vietnamese coffee) and topping, then it gets sealed inside a glazed bun. You’ll never look at ice cream the same way again.
4. Din Tai Fung
There’s nothing quite like Xiao Long Bao (soup dumplings) and no one does it quite like Din Tai Fung, which is famous for making them worth a long wait. Din Tai Fung can be found in Glendale, Arcadia, and Costa Mesa, as well as abroad, and serves up pork, pork and crab, truffle and pork, and silk squash and shrimp soup dumplings, among other yummy dishes.
5. Nickel Diner
This cozy spot in Downtown L.A. has received rave reviews for a menu filled with childhood favorites with a decadent twist. The diner offers favorites like huevos rancheros, spicy pulled pork sandwiches, burgers, salads, and special recipe chicken salad, along with a dessert menu that boasts the one and only maple bacon donut and pop tarts.
6. Barrel and Ashes
Chefs Timothy Hollingsworth, Rory Hermann and Michael Kahikina bring BBQ favorites to Studio City with their own deliciously unique twist. Feel like a good ol’ chicken sandwich? You should try Barrel and Ashes’ Best Damn Chick’n Sandwich. Pork rinds, hush puppies, pulled pork, brisket, ribs, pork n’ beans, and hoe cakes are also on the menu.
7. Roscoe’s House Of Chicken and Waffles
Fried chicken and waffles separately are awesome comfort foods in their own right, but put them together and you get a very L.A. tradition that Roscoe’s does best. The eatery, which has various locations, is a favorite of many celebs, including rapper Snoop Dogg, who took soccer legend David Beckham there in an episode of his reality show.
[RELATED: 13 Spots for the Best Waffles in Los Angeles]
8. Polka Polish Restaurant
The mere mention of pierogies could make a stomach happy. Polka’s delicious Polish menu includes that beloved dumpling in several varieties, which include stuffed cabbage, potato cheddar, jalapeno, beef and pork, spinach and light cream cheese, among others.
9. The Parks Finest
Wednesdays will be your new favorite day once you try this Echo Park restaurant’s Worker Wednesday plate special, which is one epic meal for $12. The plate (available all day) consists of soothing favorites like BBQ chicken, creamy coconut beef, 16 hour slow roasted pulled pork, hot links, rice, veggies, and the popular bibingka a filipino take on cornbread.
Delicious hot dogs and hamburgers are the specialty of this eatery inside a Union Pacific train car located on the Sunset Strip and in Studio City. The menu boasts cheeseburgers, turkey burgers, Angus burgers, Carney’s special recipe hot dog, and even a burger dog — a hot dog-topped burger.
What could be more soothing than a good bowl of ramen? Indulging in a hot bowl of legendary ramen from Daikokuya. With locations in Little Tokyo, Arcadia, Monterey Park, and West L.A., many Angelenos are fans of the eatery’s ramen bowls, which are made with noodles, boiled egg, seasoned bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, and green onions in a pork broth.
[RELATED: 7 Spots for the Best Ramen in Los Angeles]
12. Aussie Pie Kitchen
Get your pot pie on with this Santa Monica spot’s delicious savory Aussie pies available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And you’re not limited to just the usual chicken pot pie — Aussie Pie Kitchen also serves a “Greek” Veggie/Ratatouille pie, a cheeseburger pie, steak and shiraz, spicy Madras veggie, lamb and rosemary, and more. For that extra comforting feel, request your pie “tiger stacked” with mashed potatoes on the bottom and mushy peas on top.
Tucked away in a Chinatown shopping center, Chego has a menu filled with unforgettable rice bowls crafted by Chef Roy Choi. A personal favorite is the incredibly flavorful chubby pork belly bowl, but that’s not all — the Beefy T bowl, the Sour Cream Hen House chicken bowl, and the Leafy T tofu bowl are also amazing. Get ’em with a side of Oooey Gooey Fries and you’ll be in comfort foodie heaven.
14. Idle Hour Bar
When people call this North Hollywood spot a barrel bar, it literally is shaped like a few barrels. Inside, Idle Hour serves up delicious beer-battered fish and chips, French dip with homemade potato chips, and a sloppy joe with Bourbon and Gruyere cheese on a Challah bun.
15. Langer’s Deli
If you’re in the mood for classic pastrami, Langer’s is the place to look for the delicious meat in all the ways you could ever dream of: The legendary No. 19 sandwich, the hot pastrami sandwich, pastrami French dip, and a whole platter of it with fixins. And if you’re not looking for that meat, don’t worry — Langer’s never-ending menu will most likely have something else for you.
[RELATED: The 10 Best Delis in Los Angeles]
16. Milk Jar Cookies
Chocolate chip cookies are a classic snack that’s hard to top, but Milk Jar Cookies on Wilshire go beyond serving just cookies. Cookies are sold as individual, half dozen or a dozen and in popular flavors such as banana split, chocolate chip with walnuts, Rocky Road, and chocolate caramel pecan. You also have the option to top it off with ice cream!
17. Charcoal BBQ
If you’re a meat eater, a delicious rack of ribs has the ability to make you forget all your worries. Sounds like you? Then head to Silverlake for Charcoal BBQ’s Kansas City-style barbecue. On Tuesdays, the restaurant offers all-you-can-eat ribs for $19.
Where are you favorite L.A. comfort food spots? Let us know in the comments below!