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12 Beautifully Spicy Restaurants to Try in the San Gabriel Valley

Numbing hot pot, tongue-tingling cold noodles, and more in the SGV, LA’s Chinese dining capital

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Spice abounds in the San Gabriel Valley, the broad east-of-Downtown region that’s home to countless family-run restaurants. There’s hot chicken to be had, of course, but also supremely spicy noodles, chili-fortified fish, and heat-heavy hot pot for all to enjoy. Whether your goal is to stay warm through the rest of winter or outlast others in a spicy food challenge, here are 12 SGV spicy restaurants to check out in the greater San Gabriel Valley.

A number of LA restaurants have resumed on-site dining service. However, this map should not be taken as endorsement for dining in, as there are still safety concerns: for updated information on coronavirus cases in your area, please visit the Los Angeles Public Health website. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. MaLuBianBianHotPot

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18194 Colima Rd A
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
(626) 820-9206

Malubianbian, which hails from Chengdu, China, serves skewer-style spicy hot pot.  The brand has a cult following and has over 1,000 stores around the world. MLBB (as the restaurant is abbreviated) only serves its signature, spicy-flavored soup base, which contains 19 different herbs and then gets topped with an additional dose of chili, onions, and sesame oil. Even its mild is considered spicy for the average person not from Chengdu. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the spicy broth and equally spicy chili dipping sauce. 

MLBB makes its traditional Sichuan-style dipping sauce using dry powder. Each diner is given a powder mix made of minced chili and chopped peanut bits. The server then adds a spoonful of the hot pot broth to the minced chili and peanuts to create the sauce. 

There are a number of tables spread out at the popular Yes Plaza. Takeout is available and there is a contactless ordering system using a QR code to both place your order and pay online. They also offer delivery on Try Caviar, DoorDash, and Ubereats.

2. Medan Kitchen

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8518 Valley Blvd STE 102
Rosemead, CA 91770
(626) 782-7252
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Medan Kitchen may just be the best thing to come out of the San Gabriel Valley pandemic dining scene. Home cook Siu Chen opened Medan Kitchen, an Indonesian to-go only restaurant and grocery store with her family during the pandemic. In addition to Chen’s own creations, her shop also sells Indonesian dishes and snacks from other local cooks. You can find more than 50 dishes pre-packaged in bento boxes for guests to grab and go. 

Indonesian food is typically known for its spice. The prominent chili sauce used is sambal, an Indonesian chili paste made from a mixture of different types of chili peppers, shrimp paste, garlic, ginger, shallots, scallions, palm sugar, and lime juice. It is much spicier than Sriracha. Chen’s nasi bungkus, which literally translates to “wrapped rice,” is a spicy rice dish enveloped in banana leaf. Inside is sambal, a marinated egg, and spicy beef rendang, chicken, and a spicy mixture of vegetables. Although there are non-spicy dishes to grab at Medan Kitchen, many of the dishes pack a punch and are worth trying especially if you have an affinity for spice. 

You can also order from Medan Kitchen via Doordash. The restaurant’s available dishes are posted on its Instagram account every day.

Indonesian food prepared in a wok at Medan Kitchen. Wonho Frank Lee

3. Killer Noodle San Gabriel

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227 W Valley Blvd #108A
San Gabriel, CA 91776
(626) 872-0384
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For those who can handle numbing spice, Killer Noodle has customizable Chinese-inspired Japanese ramen from the folks that brought you Tsujita ANNEX in Sawtelle. 

Killer Noodle serves three types of noodles: Original style, Downtown style, and Tokyo style. You can choose to get your noodles with or without soup in addition to the level of spiciness and numbness on a scale of 0-6. The spiciest noodles are a tie between the Tokyo bowl, which is a Japanese spin on Chinese-style dan dan noodles and the Downtown style, which is more of a Sichuan-esque mala noodle. The Downtown uses scoops of ghost pepper whereas the original uses Thai chiles. The chile oil takes over 24 hours to make from start to finish. 

Customers can view Killer Noodle menus via QR code and place pick-up orders online via Clover, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, QMenu, Seamless, and Chownow, or by phone. 

A spicy bowl of noodles on a red table. Matthew Kang

4. Xiao Long Kan Hot Pot

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46 W Valley Blvd
Alhambra, CA 91801
(626) 515-6888
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Xiao Long Kan is one of the most famous hot pot chains in China. The brand hails from Chengdu, the unofficial hot pot capital of China, and boasts more than 1,000 outlets across the globe. Its spicy hot pot broth is said to be made of 90 ingredients including dozens of herbs, chili peppers, and peppercorns that have been steeped in a fatty beef tallow base.

Diners can choose between mild, medium, or extreme spice levels, but even its mild broth is considered too spicy to those unaccustomed to searing heat. XLK is known for its “butter,” which is made of slabs of solidified beef tallow marinated with spicy and numbing spices. The slab of “butter” fat dissolves, giving the stock its full flavor. 

Xiao Long Kan exceeds at capturing its iconic high-end classical Chinese ambiance, which combines its unique menu items like crystal beef (brisket and egg) and spice levels with live traditional guzheng musical performances. But due to COVID, its expensive and over-the-top ambiance and live performances are no longer possible. 

Currently, you can buy XLK’s hot pot to go. The menu is accessible via QR code, or you can call and place your order. It is also available on Fetail for online ordering.

5. Hunan Chilli King

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534 Valley Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91776
(626) 288-7993
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Hunan cuisine is known for its ganla, or “dry spice,” which comes from the extensive amount of chili peppers. In most cases, Hunan cuisine is even spicier than Sichuan cuisine. 

Hunan Chili King does not skip out on fresh chiles. It uses a lot of smoked and cured meats in its dishes along with its spicy red chiles. Although the restaurant allows diners to customize spice levels, even mild can be considered spicy for those unaccustomed to ganla. The staff may sometimes downgrade the spice level if they don’t think you can handle it, so the proactive approach is to reassure the staff that you can handle the dish’s authentic spice level. 

Hunan Chili King is known for its extensive menu, which used to contain 200-plus items. But its menu is now a fraction of what it used to be. The spice power in its more curated menu is still strong: The house special spicy fish fillet is soaked in a pool of red chiles. The spicy intestines, sliced beef in hot chili oil, spicy cumin lamb, and spicy dry frog hot pot are just some of the items that will light your mouth on fire. Proceed with caution. 

You can also order online at QMenu at https://qmenu.us/#/hunan-chilli-king-san-gabriel.

6. Chong Qing Special Noodles重慶特色小麵

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708 E Las Tunas Dr
San Gabriel, CA 91776
(626) 374-1849
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Chong Qing Special Noodles is a no-frills, mom-and-pop shop that is sure to hit the spot for spice lovers. The steamed cold chicken, Kou Shui Ji, which literally translates to saliva chicken with hot sauce, is a poached cold chicken marinated in chili oil that will make your tastebuds scream for water and numb your tongue at the same time. Another spicy dish to try is its spicy pork ear appetizer. 

The namesake Chongqing handmade noodles are rolled fresh and dosed in spicy chili oil. The biang biang noodles are covered in chili flakes, vinegar, and tossed in a spicy hot sauce. The noodles can be adjusted to your preferred spice level. 

There’s nothing fancy about Chongqing Special Noodles, but you can order online at https://chongqingspecialnoodles.com or call in. 

Dan dan noodles at Chong Qing Special Noodles Matthew Kang

7. Sichuan Kungfu Fish

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400 S Baldwin Ave #2360
Arcadia, CA 91007
(626) 461-5300
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Sichuan Kungfu Fish specializes in Sichuan-style pan-roasted fish. The spiciest Chinese foods typically come from two regions: Sichuan and Hunan. Sichuan spice is referred to as mala, or numbing spice, and although it is spicy, it is more known more for the peppercorns that give off a tingly sensation when eaten. 

The spicy fish at SKFF is served in big metal fish-shaped hot pot containers filled with a chile infused bright red broth. Diners choose between swai, cod, pollock fillet, or a handful of other proteins. Then, they pick their choice of spicy soup base and extra add-ons like quail eggs, spicy sour noodles, udon, and more. The dish arrives looking like a whole fish is swimming in a pool of red chile. 

Sichuan Kungfu Fish is available for takeout and dine-in service at the Westfield Santa Anita mall. You can place orders online or on Grubhub, DoorDash, and Seamless.

Wonho Frank Lee

8. Hip Hot

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500 N Atlantic Blvd #149
Monterey Park, CA 91754
(626) 782-7711

Hip Hot in Monterey Park specializes in melding seafood from Cantonese cuisine with traditional Sichuan spicy and numbing flavors. The most popular dishes at the restaurant all involve spicy seafood. There’s the spicy crab pot, Dungeness crab, and squid with pickled chile among other dishes. The fresh Dungeness crab is stir-fried with loads of red chiles and Sichuan peppercorns and tossed with rice cakes, potatoes, and vegetables. 

Although there are some traditional dishes on the menu like mapo tofu or spicy dry pots that have a kick to them, chef Tiantian Qiu is willing to make her dishes even spicier upon request.

9. Mao Jia (or Hunan Mao)

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8728 Valley Blvd
Rosemead, CA 91770
(626) 280-0588

Unlike Sichuan cuisine, Hunan food is known for its mouth-numbing “dry heat” flavor profile and Mao Jia’s most popular dishes are no exception. Its star dish (Duo Jiao Yu Tou) is a spicy steamed fish head casserole laden with a blend of dried, fresh, and fermented chiles. The large fish head is steamed until the meat flakes off in a bed of Miao Jia’s homemade spicy garlic chili sauce.

In addition to its Hunan dishes, it also carries some spicy Sichuan dishes like water-boiled fish/beef and lamb ribs to name a few. Those dishes are generously slathered with housemade fried red peppers, Sichuan numbing pepper oil, and peppercorns. The mala crawfish boil is one of the spicier dishes on the menu. Unlike a seafood boil from New Orleans, this version uses dried chili peppers, Sichuan peppercorn, star anise, bay leaf, chili bean paste, preserved black beans, and preserved mustard green stems.

The “Spicy over Spicy” dish is a stir-fry of chiles, seasoned with three different kinds of fresh Mexican peppers and tossed with pork. Although the restaurant aims to keep its food as spicy as the dishes are traditionally, they are happy to adjust the spice level at customers’ requests.

10. Bhanu's Indian Cuisine & Market

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7246 Rosemead Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91775
(626) 291-2101
Visit Website

Bhanu’s Indian Cuisine & Market has been a long-standing favorite for spicy food in the San Gabriel Valley. The menu is vast and includes many vegan, vegetarian, and spicy options. The restaurant has its own heat index menu for those interested in spicy food and Scoville units. Bhanu has 10 levels of spice for customization including an extra spicy ghost pepper level. The vindaloo curry, however, is spicy on its own and can be made extra spicy. 

Diners who cannot handle their spice can order dishes mild, but for those willing to take on the challenge, Bhandu has a ghost chili pepper level. Diners can also add Carolina Reaper and Trinidad Scorpion peppers into their dishes.

11. Sesame Grill

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308 E Huntington Dr
Arcadia, CA 91006
(626) 821-0288
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The award for the biggest pivot during the pandemic goes to Sesame Grill. The fine-dining, French-fusion restaurant was on the brink of closing due to COVID-19 but has since become a successful gourmet spicy chicken tenders takeout. The restaurant purchases fresh batches of chicken daily for its jumbo-sized tenders and marinates them with its own mix of flour and cornstarch. There is a mild option, but the spicy tenders are the most popular. The spice level ranges from mild, medium, hot, very spicy, and Carolina Reaper. The spicy seasoning Sesame Grill uses ranges from $68 to $110 per pound.

The restaurant’s frying oil is changed twice daily and the coating for the chicken is made fresh to order. The Carolina Reaper spice level is sure to set your mouth and stomach on fire. The jumbo tenders come with fries, coleslaw, and a housemade dinner roll. Its makeshift new menu is based on customer feedback. It currently includes fried chicken sandwiches, jumbo shrimp, homemade chicken noodle soup, Thai Tea, and even fresh fruit smoothies.

12. Howlin’ Ray’s

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Howlin’ Ray’s, which was previously known for its multiple-hour-long lines, deserves a spot on every spicy list. Its newest location in Pasadena only allows for deliveries of its Nashville-style hot chicken via Postmates. The restaurant has cut down its typical menu to only chicken wings, fried chicken sandwiches, and sides like macaroni salad, collard greens, coleslaw, and pickles to help ease the stress on its kitchen team. Howlin’ Ray’s Nashville-style hot chicken has multiple levels of spiciness. The unique blend of cayenne, ghost peppers, Trinidad scorpions, habaneros, and Carolina Reaper peppers will light your insides on fire. Medium heat is already spicy without being too overbearing, but if you want to test your taste buds you can go up to extra, extra hot.

Howlin rays sandwich on paper
Howlin’ Ray’s
Jakob Layman

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1. MaLuBianBianHotPot

18194 Colima Rd A, Rowland Heights, CA 91748

Malubianbian, which hails from Chengdu, China, serves skewer-style spicy hot pot.  The brand has a cult following and has over 1,000 stores around the world. MLBB (as the restaurant is abbreviated) only serves its signature, spicy-flavored soup base, which contains 19 different herbs and then gets topped with an additional dose of chili, onions, and sesame oil. Even its mild is considered spicy for the average person not from Chengdu. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the spicy broth and equally spicy chili dipping sauce. 

MLBB makes its traditional Sichuan-style dipping sauce using dry powder. Each diner is given a powder mix made of minced chili and chopped peanut bits. The server then adds a spoonful of the hot pot broth to the minced chili and peanuts to create the sauce. 

There are a number of tables spread out at the popular Yes Plaza. Takeout is available and there is a contactless ordering system using a QR code to both place your order and pay online. They also offer delivery on Try Caviar, DoorDash, and Ubereats.

18194 Colima Rd A
Rowland Heights, CA 91748

2. Medan Kitchen

8518 Valley Blvd STE 102, Rosemead, CA 91770
Indonesian food prepared in a wok at Medan Kitchen. Wonho Frank Lee

Medan Kitchen may just be the best thing to come out of the San Gabriel Valley pandemic dining scene. Home cook Siu Chen opened Medan Kitchen, an Indonesian to-go only restaurant and grocery store with her family during the pandemic. In addition to Chen’s own creations, her shop also sells Indonesian dishes and snacks from other local cooks. You can find more than 50 dishes pre-packaged in bento boxes for guests to grab and go. 

Indonesian food is typically known for its spice. The prominent chili sauce used is sambal, an Indonesian chili paste made from a mixture of different types of chili peppers, shrimp paste, garlic, ginger, shallots, scallions, palm sugar, and lime juice. It is much spicier than Sriracha. Chen’s nasi bungkus, which literally translates to “wrapped rice,” is a spicy rice dish enveloped in banana leaf. Inside is sambal, a marinated egg, and spicy beef rendang, chicken, and a spicy mixture of vegetables. Although there are non-spicy dishes to grab at Medan Kitchen, many of the dishes pack a punch and are worth trying especially if you have an affinity for spice. 

You can also order from Medan Kitchen via Doordash. The restaurant’s available dishes are posted on its Instagram account every day.

8518 Valley Blvd STE 102
Rosemead, CA 91770

3. Killer Noodle San Gabriel

227 W Valley Blvd #108A, San Gabriel, CA 91776
A spicy bowl of noodles on a red table. Matthew Kang

For those who can handle numbing spice, Killer Noodle has customizable Chinese-inspired Japanese ramen from the folks that brought you Tsujita ANNEX in Sawtelle. 

Killer Noodle serves three types of noodles: Original style, Downtown style, and Tokyo style. You can choose to get your noodles with or without soup in addition to the level of spiciness and numbness on a scale of 0-6. The spiciest noodles are a tie between the Tokyo bowl, which is a Japanese spin on Chinese-style dan dan noodles and the Downtown style, which is more of a Sichuan-esque mala noodle. The Downtown uses scoops of ghost pepper whereas the original uses Thai chiles. The chile oil takes over 24 hours to make from start to finish. 

Customers can view Killer Noodle menus via QR code and place pick-up orders online via Clover, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, QMenu, Seamless, and Chownow, or by phone. 

227 W Valley Blvd #108A
San Gabriel, CA 91776

4. Xiao Long Kan Hot Pot

46 W Valley Blvd, Alhambra, CA 91801

Xiao Long Kan is one of the most famous hot pot chains in China. The brand hails from Chengdu, the unofficial hot pot capital of China, and boasts more than 1,000 outlets across the globe. Its spicy hot pot broth is said to be made of 90 ingredients including dozens of herbs, chili peppers, and peppercorns that have been steeped in a fatty beef tallow base.

Diners can choose between mild, medium, or extreme spice levels, but even its mild broth is considered too spicy to those unaccustomed to searing heat. XLK is known for its “butter,” which is made of slabs of solidified beef tallow marinated with spicy and numbing spices. The slab of “butter” fat dissolves, giving the stock its full flavor. 

Xiao Long Kan exceeds at capturing its iconic high-end classical Chinese ambiance, which combines its unique menu items like crystal beef (brisket and egg) and spice levels with live traditional guzheng musical performances. But due to COVID, its expensive and over-the-top ambiance and live performances are no longer possible. 

Currently, you can buy XLK’s hot pot to go. The menu is accessible via QR code, or you can call and place your order. It is also available on Fetail for online ordering.

46 W Valley Blvd
Alhambra, CA 91801

5. Hunan Chilli King

534 Valley Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776

Hunan cuisine is known for its ganla, or “dry spice,” which comes from the extensive amount of chili peppers. In most cases, Hunan cuisine is even spicier than Sichuan cuisine. 

Hunan Chili King does not skip out on fresh chiles. It uses a lot of smoked and cured meats in its dishes along with its spicy red chiles. Although the restaurant allows diners to customize spice levels, even mild can be considered spicy for those unaccustomed to ganla. The staff may sometimes downgrade the spice level if they don’t think you can handle it, so the proactive approach is to reassure the staff that you can handle the dish’s authentic spice level. 

Hunan Chili King is known for its extensive menu, which used to contain 200-plus items. But its menu is now a fraction of what it used to be. The spice power in its more curated menu is still strong: The house special spicy fish fillet is soaked in a pool of red chiles. The spicy intestines, sliced beef in hot chili oil, spicy cumin lamb, and spicy dry frog hot pot are just some of the items that will light your mouth on fire. Proceed with caution. 

You can also order online at QMenu at https://qmenu.us/#/hunan-chilli-king-san-gabriel.

534 Valley Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91776

6. Chong Qing Special Noodles重慶特色小麵

708 E Las Tunas Dr, San Gabriel, CA 91776
Dan dan noodles at Chong Qing Special Noodles Matthew Kang

Chong Qing Special Noodles is a no-frills, mom-and-pop shop that is sure to hit the spot for spice lovers. The steamed cold chicken, Kou Shui Ji, which literally translates to saliva chicken with hot sauce, is a poached cold chicken marinated in chili oil that will make your tastebuds scream for water and numb your tongue at the same time. Another spicy dish to try is its spicy pork ear appetizer. 

The namesake Chongqing handmade noodles are rolled fresh and dosed in spicy chili oil. The biang biang noodles are covered in chili flakes, vinegar, and tossed in a spicy hot sauce. The noodles can be adjusted to your preferred spice level. 

There’s nothing fancy about Chongqing Special Noodles, but you can order online at https://chongqingspecialnoodles.com or call in. 

708 E Las Tunas Dr
San Gabriel, CA 91776

7. Sichuan Kungfu Fish

400 S Baldwin Ave #2360, Arcadia, CA 91007
Wonho Frank Lee

Sichuan Kungfu Fish specializes in Sichuan-style pan-roasted fish. The spiciest Chinese foods typically come from two regions: Sichuan and Hunan. Sichuan spice is referred to as mala, or numbing spice, and although it is spicy, it is more known more for the peppercorns that give off a tingly sensation when eaten. 

The spicy fish at SKFF is served in big metal fish-shaped hot pot containers filled with a chile infused bright red broth. Diners choose between swai, cod, pollock fillet, or a handful of other proteins. Then, they pick their choice of spicy soup base and extra add-ons like quail eggs, spicy sour noodles, udon, and more. The dish arrives looking like a whole fish is swimming in a pool of red chile. 

Sichuan Kungfu Fish is available for takeout and dine-in service at the Westfield Santa Anita mall. You can place orders online or on Grubhub, DoorDash, and Seamless.

400 S Baldwin Ave #2360
Arcadia, CA 91007

8. Hip Hot

500 N Atlantic Blvd #149, Monterey Park, CA 91754

Hip Hot in Monterey Park specializes in melding seafood from Cantonese cuisine with traditional Sichuan spicy and numbing flavors. The most popular dishes at the restaurant all involve spicy seafood. There’s the spicy crab pot, Dungeness crab, and squid with pickled chile among other dishes. The fresh Dungeness crab is stir-fried with loads of red chiles and Sichuan peppercorns and tossed with rice cakes, potatoes, and vegetables. 

Although there are some traditional dishes on the menu like mapo tofu or spicy dry pots that have a kick to them, chef Tiantian Qiu is willing to make her dishes even spicier upon request.

500 N Atlantic Blvd #149
Monterey Park, CA 91754

9. Mao Jia (or Hunan Mao)

8728 Valley Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770

Unlike Sichuan cuisine, Hunan food is known for its mouth-numbing “dry heat” flavor profile and Mao Jia’s most popular dishes are no exception. Its star dish (Duo Jiao Yu Tou) is a spicy steamed fish head casserole laden with a blend of dried, fresh, and fermented chiles. The large fish head is steamed until the meat flakes off in a bed of Miao Jia’s homemade spicy garlic chili sauce.

In addition to its Hunan dishes, it also carries some spicy Sichuan dishes like water-boiled fish/beef and lamb ribs to name a few. Those dishes are generously slathered with housemade fried red peppers, Sichuan numbing pepper oil, and peppercorns. The mala crawfish boil is one of the spicier dishes on the menu. Unlike a seafood boil from New Orleans, this version uses dried chili peppers, Sichuan peppercorn, star anise, bay leaf, chili bean paste, preserved black beans, and preserved mustard green stems.

The “Spicy over Spicy” dish is a stir-fry of chiles, seasoned with three different kinds of fresh Mexican peppers and tossed with pork. Although the restaurant aims to keep its food as spicy as the dishes are traditionally, they are happy to adjust the spice level at customers’ requests.

8728 Valley Blvd
Rosemead, CA 91770

10. Bhanu's Indian Cuisine & Market

7246 Rosemead Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91775

Bhanu’s Indian Cuisine & Market has been a long-standing favorite for spicy food in the San Gabriel Valley. The menu is vast and includes many vegan, vegetarian, and spicy options. The restaurant has its own heat index menu for those interested in spicy food and Scoville units. Bhanu has 10 levels of spice for customization including an extra spicy ghost pepper level. The vindaloo curry, however, is spicy on its own and can be made extra spicy. 

Diners who cannot handle their spice can order dishes mild, but for those willing to take on the challenge, Bhandu has a ghost chili pepper level. Diners can also add Carolina Reaper and Trinidad Scorpion peppers into their dishes.

7246 Rosemead Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91775

11. Sesame Grill

308 E Huntington Dr, Arcadia, CA 91006

The award for the biggest pivot during the pandemic goes to Sesame Grill. The fine-dining, French-fusion restaurant was on the brink of closing due to COVID-19 but has since become a successful gourmet spicy chicken tenders takeout. The restaurant purchases fresh batches of chicken daily for its jumbo-sized tenders and marinates them with its own mix of flour and cornstarch. There is a mild option, but the spicy tenders are the most popular. The spice level ranges from mild, medium, hot, very spicy, and Carolina Reaper. The spicy seasoning Sesame Grill uses ranges from $68 to $110 per pound.

The restaurant’s frying oil is changed twice daily and the coating for the chicken is made fresh to order. The Carolina Reaper spice level is sure to set your mouth and stomach on fire. The jumbo tenders come with fries, coleslaw, and a housemade dinner roll. Its makeshift new menu is based on customer feedback. It currently includes fried chicken sandwiches, jumbo shrimp, homemade chicken noodle soup, Thai Tea, and even fresh fruit smoothies.

308 E Huntington Dr
Arcadia, CA 91006

12. Howlin’ Ray’s

Pasadena, CA
Howlin rays sandwich on paper
Howlin’ Ray’s
Jakob Layman

Howlin’ Ray’s, which was previously known for its multiple-hour-long lines, deserves a spot on every spicy list. Its newest location in Pasadena only allows for deliveries of its Nashville-style hot chicken via Postmates. The restaurant has cut down its typical menu to only chicken wings, fried chicken sandwiches, and sides like macaroni salad, collard greens, coleslaw, and pickles to help ease the stress on its kitchen team. Howlin’ Ray’s Nashville-style hot chicken has multiple levels of spiciness. The unique blend of cayenne, ghost peppers, Trinidad scorpions, habaneros, and Carolina Reaper peppers will light your insides on fire. Medium heat is already spicy without being too overbearing, but if you want to test your taste buds you can go up to extra, extra hot.

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