ATXGuide

The Best Ramen In Austin

From chicken shoyu to pork tonkotsu, these are the best bowls of ramen in town.

Austin might be built on breakfast tacos, brisket, and Lone Stars. But when the sun goes down and the temps drop just a little bit—or there's even the threat of a raindrop–it's ramen that fuels the city. Fortunately, Austin is home to some excellent bowls of ramen. From chicken shoyu to pork tonkotsu, these are the best ramen spots in Austin.

THE SPOTS

Sazan is a ramen shop that should be on the radar of everyone with even a passing interest in noodles, broth, or Japanese whiskey. And if you’re into all three? Well, there are some apartments nearby you might want to consider. The specialty here is paitan ramen—a rich and creamy broth made from boiling bones for a long period of time. But unlike other popular spots in town that specialize in tonkotsu (pork bones), Sazan uses a mix of chicken and pork, resulting in a broth that’s just a little bit lighter, but no less satisfying. And as much as we love their original, the spicy and black garlic versions here are our favorites. Oh, and that Japanese whiskey selection we mentioned? It’s large, and they offer flights that you can pair with whatever bowl you end up with.


Tucked in a Cedar Park strip mall next to a vet and a Randall’s, is some of the best ramen in Austin, maybe even the state. If you live in Central Austin, you’ll probably spend the 30-minute drive to Ramen 512 grumbling about how far away it is and internally debating if it’s all going to be worth it, and the answer is most definitely yes. As far as the ramen goes, there are a lot of styles here—including a delicate chicken-and-dashi shoyu broth right alongside its popular tonkotsu cousin. And as a tribute to their pop-up origin story, they offer rotating monthly specials where they experiment with different styles, like Kikanbo-style Karashibi miso or the punchy Jiro ramen. 

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Komé recently completely rebooted their ramen offerings, now with a tight and focused menu. The ramen options include a phenomenal and well-rounded miso (with an umami mushroom base, chili oil, and chili threads), a vegetarian miso (topped with fried tofu skin), a more subtle tonkotsu that won’t bonk you over the head, and a delicate but meaningful shoyu. Komé has also mastered the art of ramen to-go, as they are the only restaurants on this list that give you the option of cooking the noodles at home, which in our opinion makes for a vastly superior ramen takeout situation. 


There was a time when the Tatsu-Ya name was synonymous with ramen in Austin. Because prior to 2012 when it opened, there really wasn’t anywhere else to get it, unless you were painstakingly making it yourself, or trying to convince yourself that the little plastic package of crunchy noodles in your pantry was “basically the same thing.” All these years later, and there’s still a line snaking around the building, at all of their three locations (East, South, and North), for a bowl of their signature pork tonkotsu. Between the long lines, and the soundtrack that could only have been picked by a DJ-turned-ramen chef (true story), getting into Ramen Tatsu-ya feels like you just walked into Austin’s hottest club. 


There are around a dozen different options for ramen at EurAsia, with little to no opportunities for customization, making everything feel very intentional and composed. They also use two types of noodles (straight and curly), which certainly means this place takes their ramen seriously. Our favorite bowls are the “Back 2 Basic” ramen with a delicate and light chicken broth, and the richer black tonkotsu signature ramen with black garlic oil. The spicy chicken ramen with a creamy broth and tender grilled chicken is good, too. There are two locations of EurAsia Ramen, one in Cedar Park, and the other in Allandale on Burnet Road.


photo credit: Nicolai McCrary

Lucky Robot Japanese Kitchen imageoverride image

Lucky Robot Japanese Kitchen

$$$$(512) 444-8081
Hours:MONDAY11:00AM to 10:00PM
Perfect For:BrunchDate Night

Lucky Robot might be best known for their classic nigiri and their inventive menu of Nikkei (Japanese-Peruvian) small plates—both of which they do very well—but scroll through the large menu for long enough, and you’ll see a tiny section of broth-based dishes. That’s where you’ll find the Robot Ramen–a bowl made with a light-ish pork shoyu broth, topped with a perfectly marinated egg, green onions, bean sprouts, and pork belly. If you’re used to the miky-white broth more common around Austin, this will be a welcome change of pace for you. 


Kanji Ramen’s specialty is a pork bone-based tonkotsu broth, with salt and spicy miso variations. Our favorite is their signature ramen—a shoyu ramen that comes with black garlic oil and smoky grilled corn that makes it all come together rather nicely. While we’ve seen some consistency issues when they get a little busy, the ramen at Kanji is rich, flavorful, and balanced, and if we lived nearby, we’d probably eat here pretty regularly.


Michi Ramen’s claim to fame is that you can totally customize every part of your ramen bowl— essentially it’s a choose your own adventure, except with hot soup. You can pick the type of broth (including shoyu tonkotsu, miso tonkotsu, shio chicken, and a shiitake vegetable) and the broth thickness (light, regular, or stout). You can even pick the protein and toppings. You might think that this degree of customization might lead to a substandard product, but they’ve been at this for years and have somehow figured out how to deliver a consistent and solid bowl of ramen, down to the perfectly cooked ajitama and onsen eggs, even for takeout. There are three locations of Michi: The Highland and South Lamar locations are open for takeout and delivery, and their Spicewood Springs inside Asia Market is also open for dine-in.


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