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Dropping off drinks at the Wood
Wonho Frank Lee

15 Solid Places to Eat Around Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Everything to eat before or after you fly out of LA's big airport

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Dropping off drinks at the Wood
| Wonho Frank Lee

Dropping off friends at Los Angeles International Airport or picking them up is always a chore — enough so that usually passengers departing from or arriving to the giant NASCAR track from hell this city so generously calls airport parking might feel obligated to reward their drivers with a meal. Or there are times when you need to fly out of LAX but have a few hours to kill and don’t want to settle with whatever’s inside the terminal. Here's a list of restaurants to try in the immediate vicinity of the LAX area, from casual Pakistani market eats to an all-day hangout making some of the area’s best barbecue, sorted geographically.

Add: Dulan’s, Slice & Pint, the Wood, Zam Zam Market

Remove: Del Rey Deli Co., Three Weavers, Roscoe’s, Woody’s

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Taj India Palace

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Whether it's for take-out or dine-in, Taj India Palace is bustling at lunchtime. Double up on the garlic naan or whole, bone-in chicken tandoor gleaming that familiar shade of red.

Taj India Palace Taj India Palace website

Caravan Swim Club

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Caravan Swim Club has a lovely outdoor area around the pool serving everything from oysters and crudo to Baja-inspired dishes. Try the squash blossom quesadilla and cauliflower nachos.

The Slice & Pint

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El Segundo’s mellow Slice & Pint offers some of the city’s best (and perhaps most surprising) pizza, alongside a slew of locally-made brews that offer a citrus-y IPA pop before a long flight.

The Slice and Pint
Pouring at the Slice and Pint
Mark Knight

Jame Enoteca

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El Segundo’s Jame Enoteca sits on a corner strip mall, and only three miles away from LAX. Hop over for the handmade pastas like the arugula pappardelle, and the creamy scarpinocc stuffed with braised beef cheek, brown butter, sage, and 12-year-old balsamic vinegar.

Lasagna from Jame Enoteca on a table.
Lasagna from Jame Enoteca.
Farley Elliott

In-N-Out Burger

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Whether it's the first stop after a long flight or the last stop before a spell away from home, tooting the horn of arguably In-N-Out's most visited location hardly seems necessary. But getting the most iconic burger in Los Angeles is always a good decision, especially in double-double form.

Ayara Thai Cuisine

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Ayara Thai is a staple of the greater Westchester area. Known for its broad menu and staple Thai dishes like pad see ew, this is the place to really spend some leisurely time before a flight, or while waiting out traffic.

Ayara Thai’s pad thai.
Ayara Thai’s pad thai.
Wonho Frank Lee

The Coffee Company

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Hawaiian bread french toast and spicy chicken sausages are the most raved-about items at this LAX-area institution, but don't skip the breakfast skillets and Louisiana-style fish and eggs breakfast.

The Original Rinaldi's Deli and Cafe

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The Fat Boy might be one of LA’s best sandwiches outright, with meatballs, pepperoni, sausage, and mozzarella, which would make for a gut-busting meal just outside the airport. The menu does have plenty of options for grab-and-go fare, from salads to classic Italian subs.

Aliki's Greek Taverna

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With the blue checkered tablecloths and kitschy décor, Aliki’s Greek Taverna has all the makings of a great neighborhood Greek eatery. Are there gyros, lemon potatoes, and tasty baklava? Of course there are. 

Birrieria Gomez

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Looking for the ever-popular birria de res nearby LAX? Birrieria Gomez parks a truck not too far from the airport, where diners can load up on the tender, saucy tacos with cheese and a side of rich consommé.

Zam Zam Market

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It’s all about Pakistani treats like biryani at Zam Zam, a few-frilles Inglewood Avenue spot that is fast, inexpensive, and delicious.

Biryani and chicken tandoori with naan at Zam Zam Market
Zam Zam Market
Stan Lee

Banadir Somali Restaurant

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As the only official Somali restaurant in LA, this halal establishment in Inglewood has some highlights, like slow-roasted lamb or stir-fry goat served with basmati rice and a simple salad.

Mutiara Food & Market

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Everything is priced reasonably at this family-run spot in Inglewood. Mutiara Food & Market’s South Asian menu spans Thai, Indian, Chinese, Indonesian, Burmese, and Malaysian, and can satisfy any diner whether vegan or omnivore. The rice noodle fish soup, or mohinga, is Mutiara’s specialty and shouldn’t be missed.

A noodle dish from Mutiara Food & Market in Inglewood, CA
Mutiara Food & Market
Mutiara Food & Market website

Dulan's Soul Food Kitchen

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Dulan’s is Los Angeles. This staple Inglewood restaurant serves up some of the city’s best soul food, and has been feeding its community for decades. Make this a must stop into and out of LAX.

Various hot dishes from Dulan’s On Crenshaw Soul Food Restaurant
Dulan’s
Mona Holmes

The Wood Urban Kitchen

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The Wood is part sports bar, part weekend lounge, part daytime hotspot for brisket, links, and pulled pork. This do-it-all Inglewood destination is a prime stop into and out of LAX, or before events at SoFi Stadium.

An overhead shot of saucy meat from a barbecue restaurant, including very bark-heavy ribs.
Saucy takeout barbecue from the Wood
Farley Elliott

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Taj India Palace

Taj India Palace Taj India Palace website

Whether it's for take-out or dine-in, Taj India Palace is bustling at lunchtime. Double up on the garlic naan or whole, bone-in chicken tandoor gleaming that familiar shade of red.

Taj India Palace Taj India Palace website

Caravan Swim Club

Caravan Swim Club has a lovely outdoor area around the pool serving everything from oysters and crudo to Baja-inspired dishes. Try the squash blossom quesadilla and cauliflower nachos.

The Slice & Pint

The Slice and Pint
Pouring at the Slice and Pint
Mark Knight

El Segundo’s mellow Slice & Pint offers some of the city’s best (and perhaps most surprising) pizza, alongside a slew of locally-made brews that offer a citrus-y IPA pop before a long flight.

The Slice and Pint
Pouring at the Slice and Pint
Mark Knight

Jame Enoteca

Lasagna from Jame Enoteca on a table.
Lasagna from Jame Enoteca.
Farley Elliott

El Segundo’s Jame Enoteca sits on a corner strip mall, and only three miles away from LAX. Hop over for the handmade pastas like the arugula pappardelle, and the creamy scarpinocc stuffed with braised beef cheek, brown butter, sage, and 12-year-old balsamic vinegar.

Lasagna from Jame Enoteca on a table.
Lasagna from Jame Enoteca.
Farley Elliott

In-N-Out Burger

Whether it's the first stop after a long flight or the last stop before a spell away from home, tooting the horn of arguably In-N-Out's most visited location hardly seems necessary. But getting the most iconic burger in Los Angeles is always a good decision, especially in double-double form.

Ayara Thai Cuisine

Ayara Thai’s pad thai.
Ayara Thai’s pad thai.
Wonho Frank Lee

Ayara Thai is a staple of the greater Westchester area. Known for its broad menu and staple Thai dishes like pad see ew, this is the place to really spend some leisurely time before a flight, or while waiting out traffic.

Ayara Thai’s pad thai.
Ayara Thai’s pad thai.
Wonho Frank Lee

The Coffee Company

Hawaiian bread french toast and spicy chicken sausages are the most raved-about items at this LAX-area institution, but don't skip the breakfast skillets and Louisiana-style fish and eggs breakfast.

The Original Rinaldi's Deli and Cafe

The Fat Boy might be one of LA’s best sandwiches outright, with meatballs, pepperoni, sausage, and mozzarella, which would make for a gut-busting meal just outside the airport. The menu does have plenty of options for grab-and-go fare, from salads to classic Italian subs.

Aliki's Greek Taverna

With the blue checkered tablecloths and kitschy décor, Aliki’s Greek Taverna has all the makings of a great neighborhood Greek eatery. Are there gyros, lemon potatoes, and tasty baklava? Of course there are. 

Birrieria Gomez

Looking for the ever-popular birria de res nearby LAX? Birrieria Gomez parks a truck not too far from the airport, where diners can load up on the tender, saucy tacos with cheese and a side of rich consommé.

Zam Zam Market

Biryani and chicken tandoori with naan at Zam Zam Market
Zam Zam Market
Stan Lee

It’s all about Pakistani treats like biryani at Zam Zam, a few-frilles Inglewood Avenue spot that is fast, inexpensive, and delicious.

Biryani and chicken tandoori with naan at Zam Zam Market
Zam Zam Market
Stan Lee

Banadir Somali Restaurant

As the only official Somali restaurant in LA, this halal establishment in Inglewood has some highlights, like slow-roasted lamb or stir-fry goat served with basmati rice and a simple salad.

Mutiara Food & Market

A noodle dish from Mutiara Food & Market in Inglewood, CA
Mutiara Food & Market
Mutiara Food & Market website

Everything is priced reasonably at this family-run spot in Inglewood. Mutiara Food & Market’s South Asian menu spans Thai, Indian, Chinese, Indonesian, Burmese, and Malaysian, and can satisfy any diner whether vegan or omnivore. The rice noodle fish soup, or mohinga, is Mutiara’s specialty and shouldn’t be missed.

A noodle dish from Mutiara Food & Market in Inglewood, CA
Mutiara Food & Market
Mutiara Food & Market website

Dulan's Soul Food Kitchen

Various hot dishes from Dulan’s On Crenshaw Soul Food Restaurant
Dulan’s
Mona Holmes

Dulan’s is Los Angeles. This staple Inglewood restaurant serves up some of the city’s best soul food, and has been feeding its community for decades. Make this a must stop into and out of LAX.

Various hot dishes from Dulan’s On Crenshaw Soul Food Restaurant
Dulan’s
Mona Holmes

The Wood Urban Kitchen

An overhead shot of saucy meat from a barbecue restaurant, including very bark-heavy ribs.
Saucy takeout barbecue from the Wood
Farley Elliott

The Wood is part sports bar, part weekend lounge, part daytime hotspot for brisket, links, and pulled pork. This do-it-all Inglewood destination is a prime stop into and out of LAX, or before events at SoFi Stadium.

An overhead shot of saucy meat from a barbecue restaurant, including very bark-heavy ribs.
Saucy takeout barbecue from the Wood
Farley Elliott

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