If you grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago, you miss long drives down Sheridan Road, going to the lake after school on nice days, strolling through the Botanic Gardens with your parents, admiring the Baha’i Temple… the list goes on and on.
But let’s be real, the thing we all miss most is the food. From the Sunday morning Sarkis and the afternoon Foodstuffs, to the late night Homer’s, the food game in the northern suburbs is strong. So let’s take a moment and drool while we remember the best part of growing up in the Chi suburbs.
1. Bacon Loretta from Sarkis
If you don’t order the bacon loretta from Sarkis, I don’t know what you’re doing. From that crispy bacon to the perfectly melted cheese, it’s the ideal Sunday morning breakfast, and you can’t find anything quite like it at college.
2. Ice Cream from Homer’s
Homer’s- you’ve done us good. You’ve taught us what true ice cream should taste like, and you always satisfy our chicken fingers and fries craving.
3. Buttermilk Pancakes from Walker Brother’s
Walker Brother’s is so good, even Mean Girls mentioned it. And if the Mean Girls reference didn’t convince you, just take one bite of the buttermilk pancakes and you’ll be hooked. Or, if you’re ready to crank your pancake game up a notch, try Walker Brother’s famous apple pancakes. You can even try making it at home using this recipe.
4. Salad from Foodstuffs
Basically, the basic of the basic, but let’s be honest, it’s also the best of the best. The greatest sandwiches, salads and gourmet foods this side of the burbs.
5. Bubble Tea from Joy Yee
There’s no bubble tea quite like it. It’s hard not to miss the endless flavor choices and the chewy tapioca from Joy Yee. Click here to learn how to make your own.
6. Burger and Fries from Michael’s
Michael’s is a Highland Park classic. With a menu that has almost everything, you can’t help but love it, and if you’re lucky, you might even spot a picture of yourself from the 90’s on the wall.
7. Hotdog from Portillo’s
If you’re from the Chicago area, chances are you know of and love Portillo’s. You really can’t find a Chicago dog quite like theirs when you’re away from home. Check out this article to learn about the best things to order at Portillo’s.
8. Grilled Cheese from Cheesie’s
Their grilled cheese is just the cheesiest around, and the best part of it? They’re open to 3 AM. 3 AM cheese, 3 AM happiness. To make a sandwich similar to their caprese grilled cheese, check out this.
9. Deep Dish Pizza from Lou Malnati’s
Oh, how we all miss Lou’s. No other deep dish can quite compare. It’s your first meal when you get back, the last meal before you leave, and the meal you always miss while you’re away at school.
10. Concretes from Andy’s
Andy’s custard is the richest and the creamiest. Blend it into a concrete, and it tastes even better. If only they had an Andy’s in every college town.
11. Sandwiches from Captain Nemo’s
Nemo’s was the perfect after school treat for all of the trevians, and you seriously can’t find Captain’s Secret Sauce anywhere else.
12. Gelato from Frost Gelato
The best treat when you’re tryna be healthy. Low in calorie, but high in deliciousness – no gelato shop can compare to Frost. If your away from the burbs and looking for something similar to Frost’s gelato, try making this 1-Ingredient Banana Ice Cream.
13. Tacos from Taco Nano
If you are looking for tacos in the northern suburbs, this is the place to go. Yummy tacos and the cutest little shop, what more could you ask for?
14. Wings from Buff Joes
We all miss these finger-licking wings. From the barbecue sauce to the waffle fries, Buff Joe’s really knows what they’re doing when it comes to wings. To make your own buffalo wings, try out this delicious recipe.
15. Bagels from Once Upon A Bagel
Once Upon A Bagel is the perfect deli. Not only do they have the great deli classics, they also have tacos and gourmet popsicles. YUM.
So thanks, Chicago suburbs. You’ve introduced us to the big leagues of the food game since we were young, and the next time you visit home, make sure to enjoy and savor these foods because you really can’t find anything quite like them anywhere else.