The all-encompassing swath of flat land in northern Los Angeles known as the San Fernando Valley (or just the Valley) offers a wealth of exceptional cuisines, from simple everyday subs and hot dogs to some of LA’s best Thai food, period. Here, street food stars compete for space with old-school burger stands and cool-kid breakfast spots, with millions of nearby diners ready to pounce on not just the next big thing, but the everyday staples that keep millions of Angelenos fed. Frankly, the vastness of the Valley can be intimidating to tackle — and, in its total scope, has far too much to offer for one single map — so here now are just some of the San Fernando Valley’s many great places to eat.Read More
21 Top Stops For a Meal in the Sprawling San Fernando Valley
Mining the Valley for gems hidden in plain sight
Dan's Super Subss
This Woodland Hills classic oozes charm. From the worn menu board to the broad array of meats and general sandwich selections, this is the kind of timeless and delicious spot that the Valley really excels at.
Some of greater LA’s best Spanish food hides in plain sight out in Woodland Hills, where owner Sandra Cordero turns out all-day dishes like pan con tomate, tortilla española, and monthly paellas.
Cupid's Hot Dogs
It’s all about the retro love at Cupid’s in Winnetka, where roller skaters send hot dog orders out from the small kitchen to waiting fans.
Apey Kade Restaurant
The wide breadth of Sri Lankan food is on full display at Apey Kade in Tarzana. From raw kale salads to rice to hearty soups and stews, this place can do it all.
An LA deli institution, Brent’s has been a staple in the Northridge neighborhood for nearly 40 years. The outlandishly good black pastrami reuben is reason enough to make the drive.
Baja Subs Market & Deli
Part corner store, part hidden restaurant, this Sri Lankan specialist turns out some of the Valley’s most flavorful food like string hopper and lamprais.
Acasa Food Truck
Parked in front of a parking lot off White Oak Ave in Encino, Acasa Food Truck serves delicious Mexican fare from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. Menu highlights include California burritos, carnitas and al pastor tacos, chimichurri steak quesadillas, and more. Not all food trucks have great vegetarian options, but Acasa has a section of its menu dedicated to meat-free diners.
Tel Aviv Glatt Kosher Grill
Sabich, schnitzel, challah, shawarma — it’s all possible at Tel Aviv Grill, the Kosher Valley micro-chain that makes some of LA’s best Israeli food.
Granada Hills mainstay Furnsaj Bakery doesn’t look like much from the outside of its strip mall digs, but head inside for some of the best Lebanese food in all of Los Angeles. The shawarma is a must-hit, and the flatbreads are the stuff of legend.
Given that Los Angeles is home to the largest Iranian population outside of Iran, it’s no surprise that the city is rich with incredible Persian restaurants. With another location in Thousand Oaks, Sadaf in Encino is arguably the best Iranian spot the Valley has to offer. The kashke bademjan, or eggplant delight as it’s called on the menu, and ghormeh sabzi are top-tier.
El Cocinero Restaurant
El Cocinero has arguably the best vegan Mexican food in the Valley, if not all of LA. Housed in a Van Nuys strip mall, this fast-casual restaurant has various plant-based meat options available to add to tacos, burritos, quesadillas, tortas, loaded fries, and nachos. Standouts include the impressive al pastor and the jackfruit carnitas, plus the nut-based flan for dessert. It’s worth coming early, as on most nights, there is a long line out the door.
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There are burgers and burger-makers, and then there’s Bill Elwell. The namesake man behind this Van Nuys beef and bun legend still mans the griddle as often as possible, turning out some of the sturdiest and least expensive meals in the Valley.
Anajak Thai Cuisine
This longtime family-owned Thai restaurant in Sherman Oaks won the LA Times restaurant of the year award in 2022. It’s been the cool-kid hangout of the past two pandemic years thanks to lots of fun collaborations, weekly taco parties in the back alley, and plenty of natural wine.
Chef Danny Ly’s contemporary Vietnamese restaurant in Panorama City is home to one of the best Vietnamese sandwiches in the Valley. The bánh mì đặc biệt is made wonderfully rich with a generous swipe of pate and an abundant layer of mayonnaise on top. Other options include eight types of phở, rice dishes, and vermicelli salad.
There are no shortage of great sushi restaurants in the neighborhood, and Sushi Note ranks somewhere near the top. Snag a seat at the seven-seat bar dedicated to serving omakase from celebrated chef Kiminobu Saito.
Located amongst other gems in the Shops at Sportsmen’s Lodge, Roberta’s is one of the best spots in the Valley for a wood-fired neapolitan (by way of Brooklyn) pizza. Customers can also find some vegetable dishes on the menu, but not the pasta served at the Roberta’s location in Culver City. No matter — the pizza is the way to go, especially the classic margherita or the bee sting, which comes with tomato, mozzarella, soppressata, basil, chili, and spicy honey.
This wagyu beef specialist has made a name for itself with locations across the LA basin, but it’s the sunny, patio-friendly Studio City outlet that’s really been turning heads lately. For one of LA’s best burgers, bar none, this is the spot.
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Cilantro Mexican Grill
North Hollywood’s Cilantro Mexican Grill makes what may be the best meat burrito in the entire city. Tucked into a quiet corner of a busy gas station, this place draws dozens upon dozens of lunchtime diners eager to enjoy the craftsmanship of chef Adolfo Perez, a Le Cordon Bleu graduate with a corporate chef background who is now making his dream come true.
Heavily charred, seriously cheesy, and impossibly crispy — that’s the way the pies are done at Gorilla, the Valley Village pizzeria that’s trying to give the Valley a taste of Pittsburgh, one pizza at a time.
Cool-kid sandwich spot Uncle Paulie’s has found its Valley audience in Studio City, where fans arrive early and often for bacon egg and cheese breakfast sandwiches, daytime East Coast-style subs, and more casual favorites.
Cahuenga General Store
It’s far from difficult to find a good sandwich in the Valley, but no spot is quite like the iconic Cahuenga General Store — a vintage cafe that serves salads, soup, and simple and delicious sandwiches. Just know that the many baskets, tins, candles, and other home goods that lovingly fill the inside may add to the atmosphere, but they’re not for sale.