somali restaurants toronto

The top 5 Somali restaurants in Toronto

Somali restaurants in Toronto serve up delicious cuisine from this particular country in the Horn of Africa. Somalia’s cuisine draws from a handful of different influences, and the city’s top eateries (mostly in Rexdale) serve all the favourites, from goat rice platters to spaghetti and sides of sambusa, with mango smoothies to sip on.

Here are my picks for the top Somali restaurants in Toronto.

Xawaash

Born from a food blog of Somali recipes, this restaurant on Queen’s Plate Drive is by far the most popular Somali spot in the city. It’s casual takeout here but the menu offers standout meals of shawarma, kofta, and muufo platters with beef suqaar.

Hamdi

Sitting right on Rexdale Boulevard, this low-key plaza eatery delivers in the halal meat department with T-bone steaks, chicken stews and roasted goat on beds of rice. And in terms of mango juice, Hamdi’s beverage consistency is up at the top.

Mushkaki

Just a bit further west on Rexdale is Mushkaki, a fun burger joint which also does Somali dishes like beef kata kata, T-bone steaks and plates of tomato sauce pasta. Pair a cheesy burger with their mango shake: it’s the combo you never knew you needed until now.

Sahan

The service is praiseworthy at this restaurant in Wexford, and portions are probably the biggest of all the options on this list. Grab a steak or some goat ribs and your meal will come with Somali tea, soup, and a glass of mango or grapefruit juice—what a deal.

Istar

Aside from the fact it’s open 24 hours (that’s an automatic win), this bustling spot on Dixon Road is always stocked with spicy sambusas and beef stew soor. Plus their meals usually come with with bread or a banana (or both), which is a pretty great custom when you’re hungry.

Lead photo by

Hector Vasquez at Xawaash


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