The Best Greek Restaurants in Chicago & Suburbs
When it comes to authentic Greek restaurants, Chicago definitely qualifies as one of the nation’s favorite destinations for the Athenian brand. There’s something about enjoying quality Greek food in the city where Greeks have become the premier restaurant owners, serving up honest-to-goodness family recipes that were first handed down generations ago.
The Greek restaurant menu is a wide palate pleaser utilizing creative uses of quality meats, cheeses, lemon, olive-oil, oregano, dressings and unique spices. Even for non-Greeks, there’s no denying the excitement that is conjured up by the mere mention of Feta cheese and Kalamata olives, not to mention shish-kabobs, greek chicken, roast lamb and fresh broiled seafood. When Chicagoans need their fill of Greek food, culinary satisfaction can be found in a sea of choices that reflect the wide array of flavors synonymous with the Mediterranean diet.
Appetizers and small bites (Mezedes) are a big part of the Greek restaurant experience often marking the start of joyous and lively feasts. Popular starters include grilled (or cold) octopus, calamari, taramosalata (fish roe salad), hummus, greek salads, Spanakopita (spinach pie) and Athenian-style meatballs (keftedes). The ever popular Avgolemeno (egg-lemon) Soup and flaming Greek cheese Saganaki are time-tested favorites while grilled zucchini and skordalia (greek potatoes pureed with garlic) also enhance the appetizer sampling experience.
As the Greeks are known for their love of life and spirited celebrations, nothing matches that zeal quite like their enthusiasm for enjoying the quality meats and steaks that accompany so many Greek dishes. The Greeks have turned this love into a religious experience, having perfected meat prep techniques that produce mouth watering souvlaki (pork or chicken), arni kokkinisto (braised lamb), Skirt Steaks and Loukaniko (Greek sausage). It’s no wonder the Greek’s most important holiday, Easter, revolves around delicious whole roasted lamb slowly roasting over a charcoal pit. Lamb Kokkinisto (Greek Lamb Stew) is a favorite at finer Greek restaurants prepared in a savory tomato-based sauce with a touch of oregano, thyme and cinnamon. This "reddened" Greek style lamb may also be served with Greek pasta (kilopites), mixed with olive oil and aged goat cheese (myzithra).
While roasted lamb endures as a meaty traditional favorite, other classic items have also made their way onto virtually every Greek restaurant menu in the region. These signature plates so profoundly highlight the Greek family upbringing, they are the best representation of the comfort food that is so integral to many celebrated Grecian customs. And who better to serve up that Greek food than the very people who were raised on their own family’s broiled Greek Chicken, Pastichio (Greek lasagana), Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves), Moussaka (Eggplant, Lamb, Beef), Chicken Spanaki (chicken stuffed with feta & spinach) and Greek Meat sauce with spaghetti.
The Greeks are also very familiar with fresh seafood, thanks to the endless assortment of fish living within the shores of their homeland. Whole Lavraki (striped bass), Fried Bakalao (cod fish), Fresh grouper, Broiled Red Snapper and stuffed Squid thrive in deep blue Greek waters and are imported into the U.S. weekly, providing Chicago restaurants with a generous supply of fresh fish.
Desserts are the final topping on the Grecian dining experience and usually include Baklava (honey-nut pastry), Galaktoboureko (custard nestled between flaky phyllo leaves), Rizogalo (rice pudding) and Greek Yogurt with honey and walnuts, all of which go perfectly with a simmering Greek coffee or cold frappe. Other popular desserts include Kourambiedes (Greek butter cookies covered with powdered sugar), Karidopita (walnut cake) and Loukoumades (deep-fried dough coated in honey and cinnamon). See our article on our favorite Greek desserts.
Enjoying Greek food in Chicago isn’t just about savoring a wide variety of appetizers, salads, meats and assorted entrees. It’s an immersion into a proud heritage that celebrates love of family, food and culture. It's also an open invitation for Chicagoans to partake in a wonderfully diverse menu that few cultures on earth get to enjoy.
Enjoy traditional Athenian cuisine at these fine Greek restaurants throughout Chicagoland:
• Greek Islands (Chicago & Lombard)
One of the most famous Greek restaurants in Chicago and the region thrives on classic entrees including homemade sausage, pan fried calamari, mediterranean octopus, center cut pork chops, chicken kapama, braised lamb and desserts. Full bar, wine list and catering for any special occasion. Delivery available Lombard location.
200 S Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60661 • (312) 782-9855
Visit Greek Islands website...
• Mykonos Greek Restaurant (Niles)
The legendary Greek restaurant has served Grecian specialties for over 40 years and is well known for their chargrilled octopus, roast lamb, homemade gyros, kabobs, fresh seafood, pork chops and weekly lunch specials. Full bar, wine list, cocktails and heated outdoor patio.
8660 W Golf Road • Niles IL 60714 • (847) 296-6777
Visit the Mykonos website...
• Psistaria Greek Taverna (Lincolnwood)
Just outside the Chicago city limits, this long standing restaurant prides itself on serving authentic Greek dishes including fried calamari, homemade beef and lamb meatballs, pastichio, skordalia (garlic potato spread), cold octopus salad, seafood kabob and more. Homemade desserts made from scratch every day. Special events & catering available.
4711 W Touhy Ave • Lincolnwood IL 60712 • (847) 676-9400
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• Avli Greek Restaurant (Lincoln Park • River North • Winnetka)
Stylish and contemporary Avli in downtown Chicago and the burbs serves inspired Greek dishes including taverna-style lamb chops, octopus, zucchini chips, moussaka, pork souvlaki, ouzo salmon, pan-seared lavraki and more. Full selection of Greek wines, beers, signature cocktails and liquors. Beautiful outdoor patio garden. Private parties also available.
702 N Wells Street • Chicago IL 60654 • (312) 643-5656
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• KEFI Greek Cuisine (Palos Heights)
Southwest of Chicago, this restaurant's name signifies joy, spirit and passion which you can taste in their Greek pastichio, dolmades, keftedes (grecian meatballs), gyros plate, moussaka, flaming saganaki and other favorites. Daily specials, full wine list and outdoor patio.
12200 S Harlem Ave, Palos Heights IL 60463 • (708) 361-9610
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• Artopolis Bakery, Cafe & Agora (Chicago)
Charming ambiance where guests enjoy Greek specialties including kabobs, spinach pie, ouzo saganaki (OPA), and baked goat cheese. A varied menu also features soups, salads, pizza, coffee and desserts. Fresh baked goods showcase the bakery. Shop in The Agora where specialty foods and olive oil is available.
306 S Halsted Street • Chicago IL 60661 • (312) 559-9000
• Chrissoulas Greek Restaurant (Libertyville)
Executive chefs Nick and Theo dish up culinary excellence inspired by time honored Greek family recipes. Signature items include grilled octopus, chili garlic prawns, pumpkin lamb sugo, whole fish branzino, saganaki, smoked lamb leg gyro, wholesale seafood and more. Daily specials, Sunday brunch and catering available. Seasonal outdoor patio.
602 N Milwaukee Ave • Libertyville IL 60048 • (847) 549-3046
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• Taxim Restaurant (Chicago)
Distinctively creative Greek restaurant uses resources straight from the villages and islands of greater Greece. Chef/owner David Nikolaos Schneider serves unique salads, beer-battered fried mussels, Cypriot pork sausage, spiced ground lamb shoulder, grape leaf wrapped shrimp, oven roasted eggplant and more. Beautiful outdoor terrace and full bar.
1558 N Milwaukee Ave • Chicago IL 60622 • (773) 252-1558
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• 9 Muses Bar & Grill (Chicago)
Authentic Greek food and hand crafted cocktails are just the beginning at this popular eatery in Chicago's famous Greektown. Enjoy charred zucchini, loukaniko (greek sausage), gyro pita, mediterranean chicken, bone-in pork chops, pasta, greek fries, frappe and more. Greek wine list and banquets available.
315 S Halsted Street • Chicago IL 60661 • (312) 902-9922
Visit the 9 Muses website...
• Barba Yianni Grecian Taverna (Chicago)
Nestled in the heart of Lincoln Square, this enduring restaurant has a passion for serving authentic Greek food including kabobs, gyros, Colorado lamb chops, souvlaki, char-broiled octopus, horta (broiled dandelions), prime steaks, braised lamb, chicken pita wraps and more. Full bar and outdoor patio.
4761 N Lincoln Ave • Chicago IL 60625 • (773) 878-6400
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• Basil's Greek Dining (Aurora)
Traditional Greek dining with a modern flair abounds at Basil's where signature dishes include lamb meatballs, hummus, mediterranean sea bass, pastichio, feta fries, skirt steak, baklava cheese cake and more. Nice selection of wines, crafted cocktails and aged scotch. Catering for any special occasion.
4000 Fox Valley Center Drive • Aurora IL 60504 • (630) 692-1300
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• Cross-Rhodes Greek Restaurant (Evanston)
An open-air kitchen allows diners to behold authentic Greek and American dishes including souvlaki, moussaka, lamb chops, pastichio, Athenian chicken, fried shrimp, charburgers, bbq chicken and more. Authentic recipes and great service have been the norm here since 1984. Daily specials and gift certificates available.
913 Chicago Ave • Evanston IL 60202 • (847) 475-4475
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• Thassos Greek Restaurant (Palos Hills)
Authentic Greek dining in Chicago's south suburbs, Thassos serves flaming saganaki, grilled octopus, pan fried smelts, loukaniko (greek sausage), pork kabobs, braised lamb (kokkinisto), whole lavraki (striped bass) and creative daily specials. Full bar and wine list. Banquets available for any special occasion.
11011 SW Hwy • Palos Hills IL 60465 • (708) 671-8958
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• Athenian Room (Chicago)
Since 1972, this unassuming Greek restaurant in scenic Lincoln Park has been famous for their gyros, char burgers, Greek salads, broiled Athenian chicken, spinach pie, avgolemeno (egg lemon) soup, skirt steak and more. Try the Greek fries and the chicken kalamata. Indoor dining and outdoor sidewalk patio available in seasonal months.
807 W Webster • Chicago IL 60614 • (773) 348-5155
Visit The Athenian Room website...
• Yianni's OPA! Greek Cuisine (Bannockburn)
The newest Greek restaurant in Chicago's north suburbs, Yianni's OPA! is proud to serve hot and cold appetizers, salads, souvlakia, fresh seafood, pasta, center cut pork chops and more. Classic Greek items include pastichio, spanakopita, moussaka, dolmades, Athenian chicken and side dishes. Nice selection of Greek beer, wine, spirits and cocktails.
11011 SW Hwy • Palos Hills IL 60465 • (708) 671-8958
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• Athena Restaurant (Chicago)
The Mediterranean spirit is embodied in authentic Greek dishes like flaming Saganaki (OPA), hummus, lamb loin chops, greek stuffed chicken, kalamari, beef tenderloin, bakalao (fried cod fish) and more. Indoor and outdoor seating can accommodate any occasion, small or large. Complimentary valet parking for all customers.
807 W Webster • Chicago IL 60614 • (773) 348-5155
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• QP Greek Food With a Kick (Hoffman Estates)
Greek-style dishes with a flavorful kick abound here where guests enjoy homestyle fries, feta spread, boneless pork chops, spinach pie, village salad, pork skewers, pastichio, greek feta pizza and more. The broasted chicken, saganaki and gyros are a must-try! Let QP cater your upcoming special event. Daily specials and full bar.
830 N Roselle Road • Hoffman Estates IL 60169 • (224) 353-6999
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• Apolis Greek Street Food (Lisle)
Using top sourced ingredients, Apolis serves authentic Greek specialties including pork gyros, braised lamb, Athenian chicken burgers, souvlaki skewers, rice bowls, street wraps and more. Try the hummus, avgolemeno soup, homemade rice pudding and Greek beer.
1109 Maple Ave • Lisle, IL 60532 • (331) 775-2135
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• Plateia Mediterranean Kitchen (Des Plaines)
Enjoy traditional Greek cuisine with a refined touch in their spacious dining areas and lounge. Signature items include first-rate lamb chops, sweet crepes, pork and chicken skewers, pastichio, grilled salmon, desserts and more. Dining room, full bar and beautiful outdoor patio. Private parties for up to 150 people.
9860 N Milwaukee Ave • Glenview IL 60016 • (847) 296-2230
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