Located in the East Valley of the Phoenix metropolitan area, the city of Chandler has more than 260,000 residents and many visitors who come to the Salt River Valley for its attractions, amenities, and dining options.
Bordered by Gilbert, Mesa, Phoenix, Tempe, and the Gila River Indian Community, Chandler is a popular destination in the Valley of the Sun for those who enjoy locally-owned restaurants that suit a variety of tastes.
American Way Market
$$ | (480) 772-1877 | WEBSITE
The American Way Market combines a cafe, bakery, and smokehouse and offers some of the best barbeque you will find in Arizona. With fresh-baked breads and tempting pastries, the cafe attracts a morning crowd.
Those wanting to enjoy soups, salads, and barbeque sandwiches start arriving long before noon. The smoker uses pecan and oak wood to give the meats a delicious flavor.
The pulled pork, smoked brisket, smoked pastrami, and smoked tri-tip sirloin sandwiches have received top reviews. The restaurant also offers an incredible selection of vintage soda labels, including sarsaparilla and birch beer varieties.
The Brickyard Downtown
$$$ | (480) 963-1373 | WEBSITE
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During the last decade, Chandler’s bar scene has transformed and diversified. An important player in the focus on mixing craft cocktails with New American dishes has been the Brickyard Downtown.
The sharable plates accompany a rich selection of drinks. From candied prawns and tuna poke to quinoa salad and mahi-mahi, the striking presentation is matched by the delicious taste.
Bar snacks, family style tapas, and a shortlist of desserts accentuate the evening with their robust flavor.
$$ | (480) 855-3663 | WEBSITE
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Since Chase’s opened 25 years ago, this family-owned diner has built a loyal customer base. Skip and Nancy Chase, along with their outstanding crew, serve home-cooked meals with generous portions seven days a week.
Their menu offers a large selection of traditional diner fare, along with some entrees that have a distinct Southwestern spice perfect for Arizona.
Unlike some of the national chains that tout their homestyle menus, this stand-alone restaurant remains loyal to the tastes of the community that has adored it since 1997.
DC Steak House
$$$$ | (480) 899-4400 | WEBSITE
Dean Laplant worked in Wisconsin steak houses at a young age, moving from his parents’ business in Milwaukee to his own before the age of 30.
After relocating to Arizona, he started the Downtown Chandler Steak House in 2010. He brought his seasoned steaks, chops, seafood, other fine dishes, and drinks to a new building in the downtown area.
The quality of food and service remains perfect for an evening of fine dining or family gatherings to remember.
Downtown Chandler Café and Bakery
$ | (480) 855-3212 | WEBSITE
Daily breakfast and lunch offerings bring crowds to this downtown café. In addition to the waffles, omelettes, salads, sandwiches, eggs Benedict, and grill entrees, this restaurant is known for its jumbo cinnamon rolls.
Other popular breakfast items include the Mr. John Wayne Skillet, Kalifornia Benedict, and avocado toast.
They make their breads from scratch, including croissants, bagels, wheat, ciabatta, rye, and focaccia. They have many vegetarian-friendly options as well.
Floridino’s Pizza & Pasta
$ | (480) 812-8433 | WEBSITE
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Floridino’s opened in 1996 to change prevailing food assumptions among many of the transplants who moved to the Valley of the Sun.
Often, people in Arizona refer to favorite dining memories that took place “back home.” The pastas, pizzas, calzones, oven-baked Italian sandwiches, and salads available at Floridino’s Pizza & Pasta demonstrate that hometown Italian cooking thrives in Chandler, too.
In addition to all of the quality menu items you would expect, the cooks developed a variety of distinct pizza muffins that can serve as an appetizer or complement any meal.
The S’mores cannoli and Sicilian sundae are two popular desserts if you have a little room remaining after your meal.
$ | (480) 899-6965 | WEBSITE
You do not need a boarding document or to pass through security screening in order to enjoy delicious food at the Chandler Municipal Airport.
This family-owned business opened in 1998, and has become a reliable destination for breakfast and lunch just a little south of the SanTan Freeway.
The eggs and omelette breakfast dishes include their specialties, such as the Take-Off Combo, the Dutch Fry, and the Philly Cheesesteak Omelet.
A variety of Southwest-inspired burritos appear on the menu, as well as tasty Belgian waffles, pancakes, and French toast. Lunch includes salads, sandwiches, burgers, Mediterranean kebobs and gyro platters.
Hop Social Tavern
$$ | (480) 485-4677 | WEBSITE
In the last 5 years, Hop Social has become a popular go-to spot for those who love fine pub food selections and the ability to choose from more than 50 craft brews on tap.
This establishment goes beyond the chicken strips, greasy burgers, and other grub often found in taverns. Instead, the kitchen creates dishes that mix Southwestern, Asian, and American culinary traditions.
Where else can one get ahi poke nachos, chicken marsala, Mongolian beef, Santa Fe salmon salad, a PB&J burger, and a forest mushroom brick oven pizza at the same table?
The verdict among loyal customers is that Hop Social does many cooking and brewing tasks, and does all of them well.
Ocean Blue Caribbean Restaurant and Bar
$$ | (480) 753-6000 | WEBSITE
If the last thing you expect to see in the desert is the ocean blue, you should chart a course to this popular Jamaican destination.
Jerk shrimp, mussels, seafood wraps, salmon burgers, curried and jerk meats, oxtail, and the national dish of ackee and saltfish are just a few of the offerings that bring Caribbean spice to the Southwest.
The rice and steamed vegetables are always cooked to perfection, and nibbling on the fried plantains has become a tradition for those who visit this small island-themed eatery along West Chandler Boulevard.
Perch Brewery and Pub
$$ | (480) 773-7688 | WEBSITE
This downtown pub and brewery features more than yummy grub and 30 craft beers. You will be joined by more than 50 tropical birds, rescued and now part of the pub’s environment.
The salads, “hand-full” sandwiches, pizzas, and dinner entrees cover many of the menu items one would expect, but almost always with a unique taste or flavor.
Among the brick fired options, the Korean BBQ short rib pizza and Notorious P.I.G. pizza received many positive votes. The South Chandler lobster prime dip unites buttered lobster with a slow-roasted ribeye.
$ | (480) 895-9090 | WEBSITE
While the Asian District in nearby Mesa gets attention for its large number of Oriental restaurants and groceries, Chandler also has a large number of Asian residents who support a vibrant restaurant culture in our city.
A top destination for a hot bowl of phở is this family-operated establishment on Arizona Avenue.
In addition to the many varieties of beef-flavored phở, the restaurant offers a delicious version of the soup associated with the city of Hue (Bún Bò Huế), rice and vermicelli dishes, and stir-fries.
Pitta Souvli Mediterranean Grill
$$ | (480) 907-5893 | WEBSITE
This restaurant has all of the Greek favorites, along with other entrees found along the Mediterranean Sea. Whether you like Village Horiatiki Salad or a lentil salad common to other regions, PItta Souvli has a variety of options.
Pastas and flatbreads will please, and the souvlaki, gyro platter, chicken shawarma platter, grilled lamb chops, and the falafel platter are top choices.
In addition to the angus beef burger, those with a preference for Mediterranean spices will enjoy the pesto caprese burger and Greek burger. Other popular items include the spanakopita and the Greek nachos with tzatziki, olives, and feta.
Ruchi Vegetarian Indian Cuisine
$$ | (480) 786-3333 | WEBSITE
In a region with many South Asian restaurants, the vegetarian menu at Ruchi stands out for the innovative way that the staff prepares the meals with a perfect mix of spices and seasonings.
Flaky vegetable samosas, a wide variety of dosas, and house and rice specialties cover a wide range of tastes. Consider the tofu dosa, vegetable biryani, and tamarind rice. Curries and flatbreads round out this delicious menu.
SanTan Brewing Company
$$ | (480) 917-8700 | WEBSITE
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With its main restaurant in downtown Chandler and a branch at Sky Harbor International Airport, SanTan Brewing delivers a tasty variety of pub grub with a Southwestern flair.
Popular appetizers include pub-style wings, brewhouse nachos, and cheesy chicken and bacon rolls. Hearty sandwiches, salads, and tacos are joined with burgers, pizzas, and meal offerings.
The green chile cheeseburger gives you a taste of New Mexico, while the chicken street and baja shrimp tacos cross you over into Mexico proper.
A weekend brunch attracts early risers with the New Mexican skillet, enchiladas and eggs, chicken on a biscuit, and the pastrami and hash skillet.
Shimogamo Japanese Restaurant
$$ | (480) 899-7191 | WEBSITE
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The Otomos moved here in 1994 and decided to open Shimogamo in 2003 to bring their take on authentic Japanese dishes to Chandler.
With a traditional dining area and a sushi bar, this restaurant captures the essence of Japanese dining and brings it to the East Valley.
Among the popular small dishes and entrees are the fried calamari, sake clams, teriyaki spare ribs, spicy beef miso udon noodle soup, tempura selections, and the Wagyu skewer.
Singing Pandas Asian Restaurant & Bar
$$ | (480) 777-5050 | WEBSITE
In an area of the East Valley with a growing Asian population, what could a diner want more than a Chinese restaurant with lots of tasty selections on the menu? Entertainment, of course!
More than your typical take-out Chinese venue, the Singing Pandas also offers nightly singing and entertainment to a full house of customers. If you seek a quiet night to nibble on your egg rolls and chow mein, go elsewhere.
If you want to enjoy a delicious dinner while listening to the Legends Showcase evening revue, come to the SInging Pandas.
On certain evenings, you may even have a chance to see one of the owners, Sherry Chen, pick up a mic and perform.
$$ | (480) 306-6792 | WEBSITE
Located in the Laguna Village shopping center, this top Thai destination in Chandler has a reputation for offering great food and fast service.
The ginger dishes, curries, crab cream cheese roll, drunken noodles, pad prik khing, tom yum fried rice, and tasty appetizers will bring you back for return visits.
Vegetarians will appreciate the excellent tofu dishes that offer the spice and flavor of Southeast Asia.
$$ | (480) 786-3100 | WEBSITE
At this location and two others in Phoenix, this family-run restaurant has brought excellent Sonoran food to much of the Valley of the Sun.
All of the popular Mexican entrees you would expect are here, along with a few variations that show the family influence that has been part of the experience since the first Valle Luna opened in 1983.
Florencio’s albondiga soup has those small meatballs in a rich broth. The taco salad and the Luna burrito bowl are two other popular selections.
Enjoy These East Valley Eats
The 18 best restaurants in Chandler AZ include traditional diner fare, fancy and upscale steak and seafood venues, and Southwestern venues.
The expanding Asian communities and a vibrant pub and brewing culture bring new places that compete with the pizza houses and bakeries of the past. Find your favorite place and grab a fork!