The Best Hot Pot In Seattle

The seven best places to raid the sauce bar, fill your table with toppings, and dip slivers of meat into a boiling vat of broth.
dual flavour hot pot with nourishing marrow chicken broth and spicy marrow chicken broth. Cooking beef and lamb, king prawns, fish balls, mushrooms, vegetables and noodles.

photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

Maybe it’s the considerable amount of gloomy days or encountering The Freeze, but Seattle is a very soup-centered city—and hot pot is no exception. We’ve got the robot-run mega-chains on the Eastside and family-owned spots in the International District providing flavor-packed broths to slurp, sauce bars to ball out at, and dippable ingredients as far as the eye can see. (Oh, and tons of free stuff too.)


Hot Pot


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Hadidilao is an experience. At this popular hot pot chain, they’ll escort you to a booth like you’ve got a FastPass and dance tableside while hand-pulling noodles. And don’t even get us started on all the free stuff (toys, pints of ice cream, lotion, manicures). The bells and whistles are nice, but the hot pot is truly great—their tom yum broth has tons of lemongrass and lime that pair nicely with delicate beef tongue, while the extra-spicy mala broths will have you tearing up over slivers of lamb shoulder. Head to the sauce and toppings bar where you can choose from crispy soybeans, satay sauce, and preserved sichuan pickles. Just watch out for airborne noodles and robot servers.

photo credit: Nate Watters

Morfire on Capitol Hill serves the kind of hot pot for those looking for a quick, laidback meal—the light broths and lean proteins could feasibly be eaten before a workout. And since this is a Thai spot, you’ll find bases like tom yum and tom kha in lieu of tomato or mala. Sesame-marinated pork slices and soft tofu are must-orders, and we like that you can opt for individual hot pot if family-style isn’t in the cards (as in, someone flaked).

Between the steam facials from wafts of truffle fragrant broth, floor-to-ceiling windows, and shiny decor straight out of an Emirates business-class lounge, The Dolar Shop is where you go for a swanky night out. At this Bellevue spot, they serve only individual hot pots which means that you don’t need to worry about which shrimp ball is yours. It’s on the pricey side, but they have a live seafood tank that you can order from, along with wagyu and lots of other heavily marbled meats. Plus, there are private (and very fancy-looking) rooms to rent with your own personal server and sauce bar.

This International District spot is a maze of deep booths and long Game Of Thrones-looking dining tables with multiple vats of bubbling soup. Here, you don’t need to calculate how many slices of ribeye and orders of enoki mushrooms are needed to feed a hungry group of seven. Just defer to the restaurant’s all-you-can-eat option for $32.98 (or the weekday lunch version for $29.98). While the meats and sides are pretty standard for most hot pot places, we love the rich bone marrow-based broth amped up with a comforting curry or dried red chilies. And you’ll especially enjoy eating tasty lime cilantro lamb meatballs and head-on shrimp when you don’t have to ration. 

For hot pot folks who are kind of lazy (or nervous about accidentally ruining the pork belly), Boiling Point is the place to go. At the chain’s relaxed ID location, the meats, fish, and vegetables come to the table precooked in woks and re-fired at the table to keep the broths simmering. Purists may pine for more customizations, but what the restaurant lacks in frills it makes up for in flavor. The subtle sweetness of the miso pot packed with sliced pork, prawns, mushrooms, and silky tofu makes for a nice complement to the more spice-heavy varieties. And while the dining room doesn’t have robo-waiters or tableside antics, it’s still fun for groups who love chatting over a chopstick-wielded treasure hunt.

Qiao Lin is the rare hot pot (and Downtown) spot where you can walk in and grab a table quickly. But the appeal goes beyond convenience. Squeeze into a booth with a group and slurp broth in the lively main dining room where bottles of soju fill the tables and cuts of meat whiz by on gold cow-shaped sculptures. Or order a solo pot and hang out in a quieter section near the bar. There’s a chance your giant raw beef charcuterie board may come out way before the rest of your order, messing up the pace a bit, but the quality of meats is high and even better when dunked in Qiao Lin’s sweet tomato broth.

Chengdu Memory is a small, low-key spot—perfect for a casual lunch trip. As one of the few hot pot places in town that isn’t a massive chain, you’ll have an actual server (not an iPad) who will suggest their favorite toppings, keep a close eye on your pot temperature, and gently shield your belongings in a seat cover to avoid any soup spray. While the glistening spicy beef oil and Szechuan peppercorn-packed broth here is rich (and really freaking spicy), we often reach for the cloudy herbal broth with pork stomach. The lamb is far too chewy, but the fishballs bursting with roe stay flavorful and soft no matter how long they hang out in the pot.

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