The Chicago Delivery Greatest Hits
What to order when there’s no way you’re going outside.
Maybe the thought of putting on 26 layers of clothing to go outside is overwhelming. Or maybe your car is buried under six feet of snow, and you’ve run out of random household objects to save the spot you just spent hours digging out. Whatever the reason, you’re not going anywhere, but you’re also getting hungry. And while nowadays you can get pretty much anything you want delivered, that doesn’t mean you should. Introducing the Chicago Delivery Greatest Hits - our 20 all-time favorite places for delivery across the city. These places all deliver fantastic food that may actually be even better when you’re eating it on your couch. And if the reason you’re getting delivery is because it’s a blizzard, please tip well.
Get the rest of The Chicago Winter Survival Guide here.
Pequod’s has our favorite deep dish pizza in Chicago, even though some pizza purists will (wrongly) complain that it’s not technically deep dish. But you know where you don’t have to listen to that kind of negativity? Your apartment. Ordering is simple: Get the pepperoni, and enjoy the caramelized crust in peace. Unless you live with a purist - then you’re on your own.
Pub Royale is a hybrid of an English pub and an Indian restaurant, and while we like going there for dinner, trying to get a table can be a little like The Hunger Games (since they don’t take reservations). But our favorite dishes, like the salt cod samosas, hold up really well to delivery, and the chicken tikka roll is consistently delicious. The only drawback to ordering in is that the excellent burger doesn’t really travel well. But you do have to find a reason to leave your house eventually.
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Monteverde is one of the best Italian restaurants in Chicago, so unsurprisingly, getting a reservation for a decent day and time can be hard. Luckily, they also deliver. Which means that it’s technically possible to eat things like the delicious ragu alla Napoletana at a time other than Tuesday at 5pm. Unless, of course, you want to eat while you watch Matlock.
The Spice Room
If you’re looking to eat your feelings, The Spice Room can help. In fact, you can rate the difficulty of your day based on how many containers of Spice Room are sitting in front of you. Whatever else is currently on your mind, you’ll appreciate that they pack everything carefully, and always make sure you have enough rice to go with all the curries you’ve ordered. Get the malai kofta, tikka masala, and both the garlic and kashmiri naan - which they’ll thoughtfully put in separate wrappers, so you don’t have garlic leaking into everything.
If there is even a remote possibility that you want to eat Mexican food, don’t overthink it - order 5 Rabanitos. Not only is everything on the menu really good, but it’s also all pretty affordable, ranging from $3 - $18 per dish. There’s no such thing as a bad order here, but a good starting point is chips and salsa, the green tamale, and some tacos. Just remember to BYOB (as you would at the actual restaurant).
Sometimes you just want to stuff your face with huge portions of reasonably-priced, delicious pasta, in the comfort of your own pajamas. When that’s the case, turn to Pasta Palazzo. Get the spaghetti with meatballs or the gnocchi in vodka sauce, both of which go really well with Season 56 of Law & Order.
Half Acre Beer Company
You might only know Half Acre as one of the 567 brew pubs currently operating in Chicago. But this place also makes fantastic burritos. They’re huge, they go perfectly with Half Acre’s beers, and they have just the right proportion of filling to flour tortilla. Get the fajita burrito (we like to request it with steak) with the smashed and fried chimichurri potatoes, plus a six pack. Bonus points if you also get the spicy glazed chicken wings, which magically stay crispy in transit.
Luella’s Southern Kitchen
This is the original Lincoln Square restaurant from the same people who own Luella’s Gospel Bird, and the food here is also (obviously) Southern. But this place has a longer menu, with classic dishes like po’boys, shrimp and grits, and gumbo. Also, we’re still trying to figure out how they manage to deliver piping hot, fluffy beignets - which you should definitely order, and probably eat first.
Sure, you can easily make a sandwich yourself. But to recreate the sandwiches from Tempesta Market would involve a lot of work, and probably trips to multiple stores - the fancy kind that have one jar of specialty ingredients on each shelf. You’re much better off just ordering. Get The Dante (which has an entire deli counter worth of house-cured meat and a spicy ’nduja aioli) or the Beet Streets (thinly shaved beets and apples with homemade almond butter), and feel free to unwrap everything and take credit if you’re entertaining guests.
Green Street Smoked Meats
BBQ can make you think of cookouts and summer, which is why it’s an especially good choice in the middle of winter. When you order from Green Street, get ribs or brisket, and don’t skimp on the sides - like baked beans, elotes-style corn, and broccoli salad. All of which can help you pretend you’re having a company picnic in your living room, with 100% fewer ants and annoying colleagues.
If you remember that scene from Home Alone 2 where Kevin orders room service, you’ll appreciate why having RPM delivered is a great idea. Because nothing says “I do what I want” like getting an entire over-the-top upscale steakhouse meal delivered to your house. This is also a good opportunity to wear a suit while eating at your Ikea coffee table.
RPM Italian does everything RPM Steak does, including great delivery. And luckily, your Ikea furniture also goes really well with pasta. Order the cavatelli, plus the shaved brussels sprout salad to round it out. Then turn on E! and pretend that the Rancics (who own both RPM spots) are actually in your house.
Honey Butter Fried Chicken
Honey Butter Fried Chicken specializes in fried chicken and honey butter, and you should make sure to order plenty of both. Also add some little corn muffins, which (unsurprisingly) benefit from extra honey butter as well, and feel free to get a salad, too - although honey butter’s effect on salad is still unknown.
If you’ve ever opened up a delivery bag to find that everything is smashed and/or leaking, you know that packaging really matters. And that’s especially true when it comes to ramen. Ramen-san might not have the absolute best ramen in Chicago, but the noodle soups here are perfectly satisfying, and this place is really, really good at delivery. Everything is carefully packed separately, so you can put it all together yourself when it arrives.
Duck Duck Goat
The West Loop has several “Goat” restaurants, all of which are still really popular. And while it’s easy to hate on something everyone else likes, that doesn’t change the fact that all these spots are actually very good. Duck Duck Goat, which serves Chinese food, is the one to get for delivery. Order the beef slap noodles, the dan dan noodles, and some fried rice. The best part is that you don’t have to deal with the West Loop sh*tshow to eat it.
Jimmy's Pizza Cafe
Pizza is the quintessential delivery food, and that’s why there are multiple options on this list. Jimmy’s Pizza Cafe serves New York-style pies, which you should be eating in your apartment where no one else can see you. While the Lincoln Square restaurant itself is primarily a slice shop, you can get whole pies delivered. The classic cheese and the white pie (with dollops of ricotta) are the best ones - just be sure to ask for extra packets of parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes. Trust us on that.