From the co-option of traditional African rice-growing techniques by Southern planters in antebellum America to the gentrification of cities across America by sleek, modern restaurants and coffee shops, food has always been political, and Black people have always gotten the short end of the stick.

Gentrification, redlining, and deep-seated prejudices have historically made it difficult for Black businesses to thrive, and stereotypes of Soul food as unhealthy have turned white palates against it.

Things feel like they’re at an inflection point right now, and it’s imperative that even “non-political” groups like Spoon University at Berkeley involve themselves in the fray, stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, and amplify the voices of Black chefs and business owners in the Bay Area.

Here, you’ll find a non-exhaustive list of restaurants to support in Berkeley, Oakland, the South Bay, and San Francisco. Whether you’re looking for baked goods in Berkeley or oysters in Oakland, this extensive list compiled by Soleil Ho of the San Francisco Chronicle has you covered.


Pinky and Red’s- As a proud partner of La Cocina, a nonprofit network solving problems of equity in business ownership for women, immigrants, and POC, Pinky and Red’s is a Berkeley campus staple feeding hungry students with their delicious chicken sandwiches.

#SpoonTip: As of 3/16/2020, Pinky and Red’s has decided to close in order to protect the welfare of their staff. However, if you attend UC Berkeley, feel free to purchase gift cards on their website as this restaurant is conveniently located in MLK student union.

Cupcakin’- Lila Owens opened Cupcakin’ after years of running a cupcake catering business out of her home. She now has storefronts on Telegraph in Berkeley and in Oakland, and sells delicious and innovative flavors like key lime pie and s’mores.

Healing Kitchen- serves Afro-Vegan and plant-based foods. It does meal delivery and sells products like anti-inflammatory smoothies. Enjoy a wholesome meal and support the Black chefs who made it!


DeVaughn’s Cajun Kitchen - Satisfy your craving for soul food at DeVaughn’s Cajun Kitchen! With options like Catfish Po’ Boys and Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya, DeVaughn’s won’t disappoint—order through a delivery app or call and pick up your meal at its Oakland location.

Home of Chicken and Waffles- Offering delivery services everyday from 11 am to 10 pm, any time is the right time to order from the Home of Chicken and Waffles. Not only does this institution serve some of the best Chicken and Waffles in East Bay, but it is also part of the Black Owned Project, a network of black business owners in the Bay Area.

The Cook and Her Farmer- sells meals, baked goods, and pantry items. Though temporarily closed in solidarity with the protests (through June 4), it expects to re-open for delivery and take-out soon. There’s no better place to restock your pantry with the highest quality ingredients or enjoy a fresh, farm-to-table dinner for two.

Souley Vegan- makes Louisiana Creole Flavors accessible to everyone by making their food 100% plant-based. Offering delicious plates as well as a Sunday Brunch menu for window pick-up as well as delivery, this restaurant is the best choice to make an appearance at your Sunday morning table or picnic at Jack London.

Brown Sugar Kitchen- well-known for their weekend brunch, Brown Sugar Kitchen brings flavorful Soul Food to Oakland with takeout options such as crispy buttermilk fried chicken or their famous cast iron skillet cornbread. If you’re planning on ordering takeout from this restaurant and are financially capable, make sure to donate a $20 meal. Partnered with Marqeta, a payment platform company, Brown Sugar Kitchen works “to provide meals to nonprofits including Harbor House, Beyond Emancipation, CityTeam and Summit Hospital.” Marqeta matches every meal donated dollar for dollar to provide more meals to the homeless population, foster youth, and low-income families in the Bay Area.

Red Bay Coffee- serves the community through food popups, concerts, panels, self-care festivals, and most importantly, delicious coffee. Focusing on fourth-wave coffee, Keba Konte commits to ensuring that his beans are not only ethically and sustainably sourced but coffee can also be used as a vehicle for diversity and inclusion as well. Support their social mission and community impact by ordering beans from their website or stopping in for a cup.


Fenn Coffee- If you’re an athlete looking for high-quality coffee with acidity levels low enough to not affect your stomach but still provide you with a burst of energy, Fenn coffee is a fair trade, employee mentality first coffee shop that sources its beans from family and women-run farms.

Zeni Ethiopian- This restaurant focuses on the conscious connection between one’s diet and health through utilizing exotic imported spices to highlight traditional Ethiopian flavors. Grab a take out plate of their generous portions and cozy Ethiopian cooking!

Jon Jon’s BBQ- Jon Jon’s is a family-owned Southern style restaurant located in Silicon Valley. Come grab a plate of their warm, home-cooking in a place were “Family and Friends meet to greet and eat!”


Little Skillet- prioritizes top-quality ingredients for all of its menu items, and sells delicious soul food classics like Po’ Boys and fried chicken and waffles. Enjoy innovative twists on favorites, like jalapeno kale slaw and sweet potato mash. Order a family meal box on weekdays to receive a selection of its menu options!

The Vegan Hoodchefs- aim to spread food health education to marginalized communities while also serving up tasty and customizable meals. Whether you’re craving tacos, baked potatoes, or eggrolls, they’ve got you covered.

Sextant Coffee- Working directly with farmers in Ethiopia to provide San Francisco with ethically-sourced, flavorful coffee, Kinani Ahmed is the only Ethiopian coffee roaster and seller in the United States. Rather than stopping by your local Starbucks, visit Sextant Coffee for a high-quality morning cup of joe.

Miyako Old Fashioned Ice Cream- established in 1993 on Fillmore Street, Miyako Old Fashioned Ice Cream is run by Tom Bennett and his daughter Teresa who have established a strong relationship with their community through unbeatable prices, generous portions, and friendly service. For those seeking a classic banana split or hoping to adventure into flavors like Macapuno or Avocado, it offers a variety of flavors to fill all of your cravings.

During this time, Spoon University at Berkeley would like to stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and amplify the voices of Black chefs in the Bay Area. In addition to the list of Black-owned restaurants in the Bay Area, here is a list of organizations that you can donate to.