Mom & Pop Shops That Make Us Feel at Home In Chicago

You know these places. They’re our favorite corner shops and neighborhood haunts, serving us the best dishes that simply does not compare. They’re those small, family-owned bundles of nostalgia that keeps us safe and warm. They’re the gems of Chicago, capturing the city’s rustic charm, and they never fail in making us feel right at home. It’s time we give them a shout out for making the city what it is.

So here’s to the Mom & Pop shops of Chicago you must visit!



Sammy’s Kitchen

Sammy's Kitchen
Photo Credit: Yelp

5542 West 55th Street


Sammy’s Kitchen is a small, cozy diner. They offer the most hearty and affordable breakfast plates, such as their all-time favorite juicy ham served with your choice of potatoes or hash browns. It’s an old-fashioned establishment, and though it’s not easy to spot, the inside glows with welcoming vibes and homily service.



Chicago’s Home of Chicken & Waffle

Chicago's Chicken and Waffles
Photo Credit: Chicago’s Chicken & Waffles Facebook

3947 South King Drive

Succeeding in being the pillar of contemporary southern dishes, Chicago’s Chicken & Waffles also has a beautiful decor that makes dining in a pleasant experience. Kind hospitality and good ole Chicken & Waffles are what keeps this Southside gem a favorite for those who visit.



Harry’s Sandwich Shop

Harry's Sandwich Shop
Photo Credit: Yelp

336 South Dearborn Street


It’s a warming, nostalgic potbelly shop, serving your choice of hot and cold sandwiches. Though they offer the basics, it’s fashioned with fresh ingredients and labored with love.



Daley’s Restaurant

Daley's Restaurant
Photo Credit: Yelp

809 East 63rd Street

As one of the oldest restaurants in the city, Daley’s has been around since 1892. It was originally started by a young Irish worker, who saw the need for food facilities during the construction of Rapid transit. Since then, this historic joint has catered to the Woodland area serving classic American food and thriving as a neighborhood novelty.



Photo Credit: Tropicuba Instagram

3000 West Lyndale Street

Since 1995, Tropicuba has been the refuge for authentic Cuban dishes in the Logan Square neighborhood. And how does this restaurant stay in the hearts of locals? By using family recipes passed down from generation to generation.


Lucky Charm Cafe

Lucky Charm Cafe
Photo Credit: Lucky Charm Cafe Facebook

3600 West Irving Park Road

Freshly baked pastries and savoring coffee, Lucky Charm Cafe is a small business with a glowing charm. The neat shop has quite the personality. Mix that in with a pumpkin spice latte and a giant croissant, and you’ll feel as if you were at home by the fireplace.


Lou Mitchell’s

Lou Mitchell's Restaurant
Photo Credit: Lou Mitchell’s Restaurant Facebook

565 West Jackson Boulevard

With over 90 years in the game, Lou Mitchell’s is still a neighborhood favorite. This iconic restaurant, reminiscent of a 50’s diner, specializes in breakfast and lunch. Rumor has it that a customer has never left unsatisfied. And how can you? Between their donut holes, big and fluffy omelets, and classic pancakes, there is really no room for disdain.


Hagen’s Fish Market

Hagen's Fish Market
Credit: Hagen Fish Market

5635 West Montrose Avenue

Since 1946 and started by the Hargen brothers and their wives, this fish market is a vibrant aura of Chicago. An expert of fresh seafood of every variety, cooked in every way, there’s no wonder why this eatery continues to win their locals over. They’ll even cook your caught fish for you.


Cone Gourmet Ice Cream

Photo Credit: Cone Gourmet Ice Cream

1047 W Madison Ave

Though it’s a fairly new establishment (opened in 2013), this family-owned ice cream parlor is the Irish flare ice cream needs in the city of Chicago. With many fun, inventive flavors paired with unique names, you’ll love this quaint shop. It’s also a great place for birthday parties for the kiddos.


Rice’N Bread

Rice 'N Bread
Photo Credit: Rice ‘N Bread Facebook

3435 North Sheffield Avenue

Cherished by Wrigleyville since 1959, Rice N’ Bread offers the unique blend of American food with an Asian flare. They serve big portions, and though they provide an American menu, they also stay true to their classic Asian cuisine. It’s a pleasant eatery that never seems to lose it allure.


Flavor’s Southern Cooking

Flavor's Southern Cooking
Photo Credit: Flavor’s Southern Cooking

5721 West Division Street

In the heart of Near West Chicago lies a soul food restaurant that prides itself in, not only feeding you delicious southern cooking but healthy food for the soul as well. Created with only fresh and organic foods, this contemporary soul food restaurant is the best of both worlds.


George’s Hot Dogs

George's Hot Dogs
Photo Credit: George’s Hot Dogs Facebook

876 North Damen Avenue 

Serving generations since 1948, in the center of Bucktown, George’s is the place to go for Chicago-style hot dogs. It’s family-owned and operated, and offers a wide variety of good eats. It is definitely a neighborhood hot spot that shows no signs of leaving.



Comment below your favorite neighborhood gems!