There's so much great Asian food in Austin, it's hard to pick our top 25.
We did it, though, y'all. These restaurants run the gamut from upscale and elegant date spots to budget-friendly cafes for a satisfying lunch. Crack open some sake or a Kirin and just try to make it through this list without drooling.
By Kelly McComas
Photo via Instagram
2115 S Lamar Blvd
Loro is the product of a union between two of Austin’s greatest chefs: Chef Tyson Cole of Uchi and Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue. This Asian fusion smokehouse offers a mouthwatering selection of tasty meats, paired inventively with fresh flavors like shishito salsa verde and Thai papaya salad.
You should try: The Smoked Baby Back Duroc Pork Ribs, served with cauliflower pickles.
Photo via Facebook
440 E St Elmo Rd
This quirky take on Thai food is prepared and made in a food trailer inside the St. Elmo’s brewery beer garden, where there is both plenty of outdoor seating and friendly, attentive service. The food is primarily Pan-Asian, consisting more of Asian fusion cuisines than traditional Thai fare.
You should try: The spicy Thai fried chicken, the papaya salad marinated in tamarind, garlic, lime juice and soy sauce, and the Roti Panang or Chicken Curry.
This unfussy Thai restaurant has been sating the appetites of UT students for many years. The portions are reliably large and satisfying.
You should try: The Pad Sea Ew stir-fried noodles and the coconutty Panang Curry.
1501 S 1st St
Elizabeth Street Cafe is one of the trendier spots in town to slurp pho and munch bahn mi. The hype is one-hundred-percent worth it, though. The spring rolls at this French-Vietnamese bistro come with three different sauces, y’all. Plus, fresh macarons for dessert.
You should try: Any of the three different varieties of fresh spring rolls.
3437 Bee Caves Rd
Sway's sleek kitchen and bar offer a grown-up take on classic Thai favorites. Fresh ingredients and an excellent cocktail menu make this restaurant a great date spot.
You should try: The Pad Thai Ki with roasted chicken and tofu.
photo via misoroundrock
2400 S Interstate 35 #150
Don’t let its unassuming strip mall location fool you. Miso Korean & Japanese Restaurant has one of the biggest, best lunch specials in town. Your lunch order is served with a house salad, rice, 4 daily side dishes and your choice of soup. We guarantee you’ll leave full.
You should try: The Dolsot Bibimbab, served on sizzling-hot stoneware.
8303 Burnet Rd Suite #1
Shu Shu's is a fresh and healthy choice when you're craving Chinese food at any time of the day. Located on Burnet Road, this stop is a must-eat for North Austin dwellers.
You should try: Sesame Chicken with fried rice
6929 Airport Blvd Suite 125
Do you like your food to look like it’s having a good time before you eat it? Head to Austin’s only conveyor-belt sushi restaurant and chow down on a variety of Japanese offerings delivered to you via belt after you order on the touchscreen menu.
You should try: Honestly just choose something at random (although the spicy rolls are good) – the real fun is in watching it toodle on down to your table.
photo via facebook / ramentatsu-ya
If people will wait in an outdoor line for hot soup on a summer day in Austin, you better bet it’s damn good soup. At Ramen Tatsu-ya, the customizable bowls of oh-so-savory noodles are definitely worth the wait.
You should try: Adding a spicy flavor bomb to your ramen for an extra kick, and a side of the Sweet & Sour Yodas – the best name for a brussels sprout dish, like, ever.
2400 E Oltorf St #1A
The worst thing about coming to 888 Pan Asian Cafe hungry is trying to decide what to get. The menu truly has it all, offering dozens of Asian dishes from pho to pad Thai. The good news is you can’t go wrong. This cafe is open late, it’s affordable, and the portions are huge – a recipe for a great late dinner or fourth meal.
You should try: The General Tso Chicken – an American Chinese favorite done just right.
This longtime Austin standby is known for its quality service, yummy Chinese eats, and extensive wine selection. What more do you need for a fabulous dinner?
You should try: Ordering some plates off the dim sum cart as it rolls by your table.
photo via facebook / titayasthaicuisine
5501 N Lamar Blvd # C101
The dishes at Titaya’s check all the boxes for excellent Thai: spicy, fresh, and flavorful. We love to stop by during lunch for the special, served with the soup of the day.
You should try: The coconutty Tom-Kha soup – served in a firepot for added excitement.
801 S Lamar Blvd
No list of Asian food in Austin is complete without a mention of Uchi. This upscale, innovative sushi restaurant offers some of the freshest fish and most unique dishes in town. Its sister restaurant Uchiko is pretty dang wonderful, as well.
You should try: The lower-priced, just as amazing offerings during Sake Social Hour. We love the walu-walu, a filet of oak-grilled escolar served in citrusy yuzupon broth.
photo via facebook / koriente
621 E 7th St
Koriente is a staff favorite here at Do512. This Red River Pan-Asian cafe is one of downtown Austin’s most affordable and healthy spots for a quick bite before catching a show. Their dining room is closed but they are offering to-go and delivery.
You should try: A dish that contains rice medallions (chewy, gnocchi-like ovals of pounded rice). Sip on some free miso soup while you wait for your food to come out.
5001 Airport Blvd
The only thing cuter than this cozy Vietnamese restaurant’s name is its namesake: chewy steamed bun sliders stuffed with delicious savory meats and veggies.
You should try: The Bun Belly, duh: a steamy pork belly bun. We also love the crispy, lightly fried Salt and Pepper Tofu.
photo via facebook / lucky robot by a taste of koko
1303 S Congress Ave
This bright and colorful South Congress sushi spot offers a friendly atmosphere, some dangerously easy-to-drink sake cocktails, and an abundance of fresh sushi rolls and Japanese dishes made with responsibly-sourced fish.
You should try: The Spicy Teriyaki Chicken Rice Bowl, loaded with chicken breast and fresh veggies.
500 W 5th St
Wu Chow’s farm-to-table Chinese restaurant has one of the best dim sum brunches in Austin. This restaurant’s regionally-influenced dishes will give your taste buds a tour of eight styles of Chinese cuisine.
You should try: Sunday Dim Sum Brunch – especially the Shanghai Soup Dumplings.
514 Medina St
Fukumuto’s nigiri (fresh fish over rice) and yakitori (grilled meat skewers) are artfully presented and mouthwateringly tender. The restaurant’s elegant interior makes a dining experience here as pleasing to the eyes as the palate.
You should try: The super-juicy Enori (bacon-wrapped mushrooms).
photo via yelp by lyubov l.
This airy, friendly little cafe is one of the best places in town to get your daily dose of fresh fruits and veggies. The salad plates, poke bowls, and rice paper wraps at Nancy’s are rainbows of crisp goodness. Come here to revive yourself and erase your guilt after a night of drinking and fried food.
You should try: The signature plate with spicy mango tofu – a huge portion of life-sustaining health bursting with Asian-inspired flavors.
5301 Airport Blvd
A local favorite for sushi, Kome offers plenty of options for those who prefer their food cooked as well as the fans of fresh sashimi. They're currently closed for in-person dining, but you can order to-go.
You should try: Building yourself a sampler by ordering a lil’ somethin’ from a couple of different sections of the menu: starters, sushi rolls, bento boxes, and more.
1000 E 11th St
4805 Burnet Rd
Unique twists on classic Chinese dishes give Old Thousand’s menu an updated feel. It’s kind of like a way-hipper PF Chang’s. In the best way possible. Check out our Do512 Eats experience here.
You should try: The decadent house-smoked Brisket Fried Rice.
A food truck turned Austin staple, East Side King offers “Japanese street food with a touch of Austin soul”. Spicy small plates and lots of gluten-free options make up the menu at both the trucks and the brick-and-mortar locations.
You should try: Thai chicken kara-agé – a crispy deep-fried chicken thigh with sweet-and-spicy flavors.
photo via yelp by young c.
311 W 6th St
Straightforward, dependable sushi and tons of great specials and libations to choose from. Sometimes that’s all you really want from a sushi bar, isn’t it? Maiko Sushi Lounge does it just right, with a lounge-worthy aesthetic to boot.
You should try: Coming in during happy hour for lower prices on house favorites like tuna and salmon nigiri.
1931 E Oltorf St
Southeast Asian delights abound at Hai Ky. We love this spot for its affordable dishes, huge menu, and relaxed atmosphere.
You should try: Building your own stir-fry by choosing your protein and carb, starting with the Sichuan Broccoli or Spicy Garlic Sauce.
Photo via Yelp
3909 N Interstate Hwy 35 Ste E-5
9333 Research Blvd Bldg E Ste 402
Nothing beats classic Chinese takeout, and it’s even better when their delivery service is free. Tso’s Chinese is built for delivery and serves their Americanized Chinese menu to Central and North Austin areas. They also offer a variety of vegan and vegetarian options, from Tofu Double Pan Fried Noodles to their delicious Veggie Delight. This restaurant delivers everyday from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m and has a $20 order minimum, so place your order on their website!