In a world full of people trying to lead a healthy lifestyle, you deserve to occasionally sink your teeth into some crispy comforting goodness. Savour the BBQ sauce on those ribs. Let your eyes roll back as you dig into that Southern style macaroni and cheese. Soul food is the root of all happiness and the foodgasm you've been waiting for.
Good soul food is not always easy to come by, especially in such a diverse city like Toronto. Do your taste buds a favour and check these places out around the 6, they will satisfy your belly's deepest desires.
Photo Cred - Eat and Relish
1. Southern Accent
Located in Toronto's Mirvish village, Southern Accent is situated inside a cozy Victorian townhouse with a gorgeous patio scene. With an authentic 1940's style bar and psychic readings on site, this restaurant is truly one of a kind. Many recommend the popular blackened chicken aka Bourbon Street Chicken, sauteed alligator, lamb, and the pecan pie for dessert.
You can read more about Southern Accent's menu here.
2. Harlem Underground
A blend of Afro-American and Afro-Caribbean food with a modern style, Harlem Underground dishes some mouthwatering meals that keeps Torontonians coming back for more. At the Underground's sister Harlem restaurant at 67 Richmond St E, they pride themselves on promoting Toronto's artistic and musical cultural diversity by showcasing different events in their venue. Some favorites at the Underground are the jerk chicken wings, catfish Lafayette, fried chicken and waffles, as well as the jambalaya.
Check out more on the Harlem's events and menu here.
Photo Cred - Loaded Pierogi
3. Loaded Pierogi
This Polish restaurant specializes in comfort and soul food with a delicious Canadian twist. True to its name, their pierogies are some of the best in Toronto and come with some unique toppings that you can't find elsewhere - pulled pork, mushrooms, buffalo chicken, green peppers, kimchi, crab, lobster. Mmmmm... Definitely a must visit.
Check our Loaded Pierogi's site and menus online.
Photo Cred - Gizelle Lau
4. Rasta Pasta
Noted as having "the best Jerk in TO", Rasta Pasta is a Jamaican cuisine gem in the heart of Kensington Market. Just outside the restaurant, the chef grilling on the BBQ alone has people lining up outside the door drawn in by the scent of the smokey BBQ Jerk sauce. Definitely try their ackee and salted cod, curry goat, rice and beans, jerk chicken panini... pretty much any item on their menu is incredible. WARNING: Be sure to hit up Rasta Pasta earlier on in the day though - their food tends to sell out quickly during the day because of how delish it is.
You can see more reviews and pictures of Rasta Pasta here.
Photo cred - Lisa Jackson
5. The Dirty Bird Chicken + Waffles
When I first heard chicken and waffles was an actual combo people ate, my very naive self deemed it as odd. When I first tried it though... Man, am I ever stupid for doubting it. Easily one of my favorite foods now. The Dirty Bird Chicken and Waffles joint is another place to hit in Kensington Market with its crispy finger lickin' good chicken and delicious coleslaw. They use gluten-free batter here as well - score! Whether you want a meal with chicken or a treat to enjoy with a waffle ice cream sandwich, the Dirty Bird sells both. The ODB on the menu is the chicken and waffles combo to try first. They even sell the "Dirty Bird'ger" - a burger with waffles as buns! It's a 7$ customer favorite.
You can check out their site and menu here.
Photo Cred - Dome Poon
6. The Stockyards
With some of the best BBQ and Southern style food in Toronto, The Stockyards is easily somewhere your stomach needs to visit to get that comfort food fix. Besides absolutely getting some of their fried chicken, some customer favorites at The Stockyards are their chicken and waffles, the biscuits with gravy, the green chili burger, ribs, and pulled pork.
Head over there ASAP, ok? Here's their site for more about them and their food.
Photo Cred - Stuart Sakai
7. Rhum Corner
Owned under The Black Hoof, Rhum Corner is a laid-back spot that offers some delicious Haitian and Caribbean soul food. Located in Little Italy, this cozy spot is well-known for its "Dark and Stormy" drink that tastes exactly like the one from the Caribbean and makes customers feel like they're lounging on the beach rather than braving cold Canadian weather. The goat, mac and cheese, oxtail, and cashew chicken are among some of the favorites at the Rhum Corner.
Check out some of the reviews they've gotten if you need more convincing.
Photo Cred - The Kale Kitten
8. The Hogtown Vegan
Are you super specific with your diet? I present to you the Hogtown Vegan. Meat-,dairy-, and egg-free Southern style comfort food. They also offer weekend brunch and local beers on tap. Some of the customer favorites on the menu? Their "Southern Combo" aka steamed greens, fried 'unchicken', and their yummy mac and cheese on the side is super popular. The tofu wings, sweet potato mash, and their 'unchicken' and waffles are also some fan favorites to try.
More on the Hogtown Vegan? Here ya go.
9. Soul Jerk
Super new to Toronto and just over a year old, Soul Jerk is a family owned business that prides itself in soul food and Jamaican cuisine. Their jerk chicken is seasoned and grilled beautifully, oxtail is cooked in delicious gravy, and the fish is nice and crispy. Soul Jerk's curried goat and jerk pork are two other reasons to definitely pay them a visit.
For a couple reviews, you can check out their Facebook page here.
10. Greenwood Smokehouse BBQ
Greektown Toronto is home to the heavenly Greenwood Smokehouse BBQ. Of course, the ribs and mac and cheese are a must here. They also make some of the best sammies too - their pulled pork sandwich is very popular. Other hot items on the menu? The brisket, the slaw, and the key lime pie are some of the best at Greenwood.
You can read more items on their menu at their site.
God bless Canada for letting us shove our faces full of delicious Southern goodness - with more options now for anyone's dietary needs. Happy eating, Toronto!