There are many reasons to visit Egypt, from its historical significance to its crystal blue beaches to its excellent weather (not in August, though) to its friendly and welcoming people. Egypt is a tourist-loving country through and through. But do you know what the best thing about Egypt is? The one thing both the tourists and the locals agree on? The food.
Egypt is a heaven for food lovers! Having always been a melting pot for so many different cultures throughout history, Egypt has a highly diverse cuisine. Taking a part of each culture that has passed through its land, Egypt has created a unique cuisine that speaks to the true nature of its people and land. Whatever you crave, you can find it in Egypt! From traditional Foul and Falafel to Koshary to Italian Pasta and Pizza to fresh seafood and so much more, Egypt has it all.
As Egyptian mothers would always say, “Nothing tastes better than homemade food!” And we know this all too well —especially if you want to eat traditional Egyptian dishes. However, being a tourist does not grant you the privilege of homemade food. So, we will bring you the next best thing: The best restaurants in Egypt!
Best Restaurants in Egypt
“Can you recommend a restaurant in Egypt?” It is a question every tourist asks, and the answer is yes, we can! Egypt is huge, and every single city has hundreds of restaurants and cafes to try out. Even though we love and appreciate all Egyptian cities, we must confess that Cairo and Alexandria have the widest variety of restaurants. If only for their size and population, Cairo and Alexandria offer an endless amount of restaurants for all taste buds.
For that, we have prepared a list of restaurants around the two major Egyptian cities that you must try. These restaurants have been vouched for by tourists and locals alike. They all range from casual to semi-fancy—so if you’re looking for street food, check our blog post on the best Egyptian street food sandwiches. But we guarantee these places will leave your stomach full and happy.
Where to Eat in Cairo?
Cairo is Egypt’s capital, which means it is the melting pot for all Egyptians. From the east to the west and from the north to the south, all kinds of Egyptians live in Cairo. This brings the city unique, diverse flavours in its culture and food. This diversity is also reflected in the restaurants around Cairo. You will see what we mean in the collection of restaurants we chose right below!
Meal type: Breakfast
Felfela is one of the best Egyptian restaurants in Cairo. It was founded by Amina Zaghloul in 1959 and has been a staple for traditional breakfast ever since. It is located in Downtown, one of the busiest neighbourhoods in Cairo. Surrounded by shops of all kinds, Felfela is a great place to start your day.
The restaurant has two separate sections. The first one is right on Kasr El Nile Street, mainly for deliveries and pickups. However, if you want to sit and eat, you must walk around the building and enter the actual restaurant on Hoda El Shaarawy Street. The restaurant has a beautiful interior with an authentic Egyptian design. It will immediately make you feel like you travelled back in time!
Felfela offers a menu of traditional Egyptian breakfast dishes such as Foul, stuffed and plain Falafel, Besara, Fried Eggs, Cheese and much more. It’s relatively cheap, so you can get as many dishes as possible to try everything from one of the best resto!
Meal type: Breakfast/ Lunch
Just when we thought that Egypt did not need any more restaurants that serve traditional Egyptian dishes, Zööba came and knocked it out of the park! Founded in 2012, Zööba is an Egyptian restaurant that gave Egyptian dishes a whole new life!
You can find Zööba all over Cairo. From their original Zamalek branch to Maadi and New Cairo, Zööba is everywhere! They offer many popular traditional Egyptian dishes, including Hawashi, Koshary and Liver.
However, our favourite thing to eat at Zööba is their mouth-watering Taameya! If you’re thinking, “I’ve never heard of Taameya before! What is that?” Well, we have a surprise for you! Taameya is Falafel! They’re one and the same; it’s just semantics. Zööba’s Taameya sandwiches are uncontested! Whether you get them plain or with added Pickled Lemon or Eggplant, you will never eat Taameya anywhere else again!
Zööba is a bit pricier than local Foul and Taameya places around Cairo, but it’s worth every pound!
Koshary Abou Tarek
Meal type: Lunch/ Dinner
We cannot talk about traditional Egyptian dishes without mentioning Koshary, and we cannot speak about Koshary without mentioning one of the best restaurants in Egypt, Abou Tarek! Abou Tarek is the most famous Koshary place in all of Egypt! Is it the best Koshary place? We cannot tell because Koshary is delicious everywhere. However, with all the hype surrounding it, you must at least try it!
Koshary Abou Tarek was founded in 1960 and has been the most popular place for Koshary ever since. It is located Downtown at the corner of Maarouf and Champollion Street and features two stories with seating areas. Like any respectable Koshary place, Abou Tarek only serves one dish: Koshary. The only options you get are the size of your plate and a couple of side dishes to choose from, such as Green Salad, Spiced Tomatoes and Baked Spiced Bread.
They also offer some traditional desserts (but these are not the main dishes, so the one-dish rule still applies!) such as Om Ali, Rice Pudding, Mahalabeya and Baked Pumpkin. Their prices are pretty good, and the amount of food you get is humongous!
The Revolving Restaurant
Meal type: Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
Food is a million times better with a view, and The Revolving Restaurant at Grand Nile Tower knows that all too well! Located on the 41st floor of the Grand Nile Tower, The Revolving Restaurant is one of the highest restaurants in the Middle East. It’s an experience you will never forget!
The restaurant revolves 360 degrees in around an hour and a half. While you enjoy their delicious menu of European dishes, you get the opportunity to see Cairo like never before! From the Pyramids of Giza to the Nile River, many of Cairo’s most famous sites are visible from the expansive windows. The slow, revolving motions will allow you the chance to see it all no matter where you choose to sit.
Motion sickness aside (just kidding, it moves slowly; you’ll barely notice it!) The Revolving Restaurants offers a delicious menu to suit all tastes. From lobsters to duck to rib-eye, each main course is better than the last. In our opinion, The Revolving Restaurant is the perfect place for a romantic date at the top of the historic city of Cairo.
Meal type: Dinner
Are we still not fancy enough for you? Then how about a Michelin Star restaurant at the heart of Cairo? Culina is an all-day dining restaurant at The Nile Ritz Carlton that offers an array of international and Egyptian dishes. Even though it’s Michelin Star-Award, it’s not stuffy fancy but casual with a pleasant atmosphere for families.
Culina is located at The Nile Ritz Carlton Hotel in Downtown. For breakfast, Culina chefs offer an open-buffet style menu where you can eat as much as you want for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The cuisine changes daily from European to traditional Egyptian and Middle Eastern food. On Fridays, you can catch their popular Cairo brunch menu.
They also have weekly entertainment programmes of Jazz music and child-friendly events. Culina is, unfortunately, currently temporarily closed for renovations. However, we’re sure it will return soon, better than ever!
Meal type: Breakfast/ Lunch
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Café Riche is a renowned historical cafe in Downtown Cairo. You do not go to Café Riche for the food. You go for a taste of history and to sit where great Egyptian men used to sit.
From Nobel Prize novelist Naguib Mahfouz to former President Gamal Abdel Nasser, famous figures in Egyptian history have frequented Café Riche since its foundation in 1908. During the time leading to the 1919 revolution, Egyptian revolutionaries used to take their meetings in the basement of the cafe to print flyers and plan their next moves. Café Riche is rich in history and has significantly impacted Egyptian history through the ages.
As for food, you can find traditional Middle Eastern dishes served in the café along with coffee, tea and bakeries. It’s a great place to sit for a few hours and read or catch up with old friends.
Where to Eat in Alexandria?
What if you want to get away from Cairo and its busy streets? Then Alexandria is the city to go to! Alexandria is far from calm, if we’re honest; however, everything is better by the sea! Coastal cities have their own aura and vibe, and the sea breeze makes life seem lighter and food more delicious.
Meal type: Breakfast
As usual, we must start our day with a delicious full breakfast! And there is no better place to go in Alexandria than Délices Pâtisserie. Located on Saad Zaghloul Street across the Courniesh, Délices is a popular spot for locals and foreigners alike to have their morning coffee and delicious fresh pastry.
The Alexandrian staple is a warm and cosy restaurant that offers international and traditional Egyptian breakfast along with an array of hot and cold drinks and fresh pastries. It has indoor and outdoor seating areas that are usually full of customers all day long. Everything we ever ate at Délices was absolutely delicious! Their breakfast, though, is their best feature—the eggs are to die for!
If you want to have breakfast there, though, we recommend arriving as early as possible because the usual customers always fill the place to the brim!
Kebdet El Falah
Meal type: Sandwiches
While walking in Smouha, you will suddenly find a massive crowd of people sitting in the middle of the street eating a mountain of sandwiches! That is Kebdet El Falah. The place only opened a couple of years ago, but since then, it has proven itself to be one of the best places to eat Alexandrian liver.
Kebdet El Falah specialises in Alexandrian liver sandwiches. They also serve Koshary, Pasta, Soujouk and a couple of desserts. However, people go to El Falah to eat Kebda and nothing else! Their sandwiches are relatively small, which is why people end up buying more than one, two, or three. Look, there is no judgment when you’re at Kebdet El Falah! Just order more sandwiches; everyone’s doing it!
Meal type: Dinner
Cuisine: Egyptian Seafood
You cannot go to Alexandria and not eat seafood. It’s basically illegal! (It’s not, but for the sake of drama, we’ll pretend it is). There are hundreds of seafood restaurants all around Alexandria, from the super fancy ones all the way to the souq, where you can buy fresh catch from local fishermen. El Lol is where you can get the best of both worlds: Fresh seafood caught right in front of your eyes and a restaurant with the best view in town.
El Lol is a family-run shack by El Fanar on the outskirts of Alexandria. It’s located right on the beach, where you can sit and look at the lighthouse while you wait for your food. The family that owns and runs the restaurant do everything from catching the fish, preparing it however you like it and cooking it right in front of you!
It might take them a little longer than average restaurants to prepare your food, but it’s more than worth it! And you can just enjoy the beach and the stunning view of the Middertanean as you wait.
White and Blue Restaurant (The Greek Club)
Meal type: Lunch/ Dinner
Cuisine: Egyptian/ Greek
The Greek Club is one of the Alexandrian locals’ favourite semi-fancy restaurants. It has a gorgeous view of the Alexandria Harbour that is second to none. Paired with their delicious menu of seafood and Greek dishes, White and Blue Restaurant is a must-visit!
You must be wondering, is it called White and Blue Restaurant or The Greek Club? Well, the official name is White and Blue Restaurant. However, locals call it The Greek Club, and we do so as well! Whatever you want to call it, that will not change the fact that this restaurant offers some of the best seafood you will ever eat! And as we previously said, everything just tastes 100% more tasty when you have a good view.
Did you find something that suits your taste buds? We sure hope you did! But even if you did not, we have many more recommendations for you. As we said, Egypt is heaven for food lovers, and Egyptians will never let you leave the country unsatisfied! (It’s not a hostage situation, it’s just love!) From Cairo to Alexandria, your favourite dish is out there somewhere!