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Top 13 Navy Pier Restaurants You Need to Try

Are you planning a trip to Chicago, Illinois? If so, one hot tourism destination you don’t want to miss out on during your stay in The Windy City is Navy Pier.

chef preparing gourmet food at a restaurant in Navy Pier in Chicago

There are plenty of rides, museums, and other attractions you can visit, like the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Crystal Garden, and Funhouse Maze. You can also get a nice view of Chicago Harbor during a clear day.

Like many of the other buzzy areas around Chicago, you’re bound to find many places to eat. So, if you’re in the mood for Chicago-style pizza, hot dogs, and other sweet and savory fare, you have many options to choose from. But this begs the question: where can I find the best ones worth the visit?

Luckily, I compiled this list of the best restaurants in Navy Pier guaranteed to exceed your taste buds’ expectations and make your day out enjoyable. It’s also a great way to find places to meet up with others in between each attraction.


700 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-288-8783
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First up on my list of the top restaurants in Navy Pier is Giordano’s, located near Polk Bros Park and the Chicago Children’s Museum.

This casual pizzeria is an excellent place to enjoy deep-dish, stuffed pizza and other classic Italian dishes with anyone you bring to the pier.

If you’re in the mood for pizza, consider trying their deep-dish, stuffed Bacon BBQ Chicken, Chicago-style, or Chicken Sausage Deluxe pies.

They also offer thin-crust pizza. I also recommend their Chicken Parmesan, Spaghetti with Meat Sauce, or Meatball Sub if you’re looking for something extra to enjoy.

If you’re extra hungry, be sure to start with their Mozzarella Triangles or Boneless Chicken Nuggets.

Garrett Popcorn Shops

600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 888-476-7267
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Next up on my list of the best restaurants in Navy Pier is Garrett Popcorn Shops, a short walk away from Build-A-Bear Workshop and the Centennial Wheel.

This casual eatery is the perfect place to find the best Chicago-style gourmet popcorn in the city if you’re looking for a quick snack before checking out the nearby rides.

My favorite popcorn flavors that I recommend trying during your first visit are Buffalo Ranch, Hot Cocoa CaramelCrisp Mix, CheeseCorn, and Macadamia CaramelCrisp.

You can also customize your own tin with three gourmet popcorn flavors of your choice if you’re interested in taking their snacks to-go.

Original Rainbow Cone

600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 773-238-7075
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Three minutes away from the Observation Deck stands Original Rainbow Cone, one of the best restaurants in Navy Pier for anyone with a sweet tooth.

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Since 1926, this casual and airy destination has served its signature Rainbow Cone, consisting of five slices of ice cream flavors, for all to enjoy.

You can enjoy their Orange Sherbet, Pistachio, Palmer House, Strawberry, and Chocolate concoction in a cone, cup, or cake roll, but they offer other tasty delicacies to brighten up your day.

I prefer ordering their Cookie Dough Shake, Banana Split Sundae, New York Vanilla Cone, or Bubble Gum Pint. Don’t forget to add your favorite toppings.

Brown Sugar Bakery

600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-526-3221
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Another Navy Pier restaurant that I recommend for getting something sweet to eat is Brown Sugar Bakery.

This stylish, Southern-style bakery is a great place to enjoy customizable cakes after an exciting day at the pier or a hearty dinner at one of the other nearby restaurants

While their Navy Pier destination offers walk-up service only, they also have another shop in the city 11 miles south.

Brown Sugar Bakery offers tasty pastries in many traditional houses and premium flavors. I recommend trying their Strawberry Cheesecake, German Chocolate Cake, Yellow Chocolate Cake, and Caramel Jumbo Cupcake.

They also offer other favorite confectionaries, including bread pudding, brownies, and banana pudding.

Offshore Rooftop

1000 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-535-6660
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Are you having trouble finding any restaurants in Navy Pier offering a scenic view of Chicago’s skyline? Then, consider stopping by the Offshore Rooftop, found on the Festival Hall’s third floor, for a dining experience you’ll never forget. It has an airy, sleek ambiance and offers quality cocktails and California cuisine near Lake Michigan. 

Its terrace also has fire pits and a gaming area to ensure guests have a more engaging time during their visit.

If you’re treating your friends to dinner, start with their hickory-smoked chicken wings or avocado hummus.

Then, try their Faroe Island Salmon or Nashville Chicken Sandwich with a Sparkling Sapphire or Hotty Toddy cocktail. They also offer bottomless mimosas during their weekend brunch.

Snow Dragon Shavery

600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611

Snow Dragon Shavery is a Navy Pier restaurant offering amazing frozen desserts by the waterfront.

It’s warm, contemporary, casual atmosphere is a great place to treat yourself after spending some time at Amazing Chicago’s Funhouse Maze. Best of all, most of their frozen yogurt options are non-fat, so you don’t have to worry about overindulging during your trip.

Consider sampling their Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Frozen Yogurt, Vanilla Macaroon Ice Cream Sandwich, Strawberry Shaved Snow, or Triple Chocolate Frozen Yogurt topped with coconut shavings, fruit, or graham crackers. 

If you’re feeling thirsty, you should also try their milkshakes, fruit smoothies, or organic bubble tea. My favorite flavors are Green Tea, Passion Fruit, and Strawberry.

Relish Chicago Hot Dogs

550 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 6061
Phone: 312-620-3299
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You can find Relish Chicago Hot Dogs near Addams Memorial Park, Milton Lee Olive Park, and Ohio Street Beach.

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If you’re in the mood for a quick pick-me-up before spending the afternoon at Navy Pier, you can’t go wrong with their Chicago-style hot dogs and other filling snacks for anyone too busy to sit down for lunch.

I love ordering a Jumbo Polish or Chicago Hot Dog topped with onions, ketchup, pickle spears, and relish.

If you aren’t interested in a hot dog, you can also try their fresh-squeezed Lemon Shake Up or Italian ices. In my opinion, their rainbow flavors are the best solutions for beating any hot, busy summer day.

Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville Bar and Grill

700 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-496-3840
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One of the best restaurants in Navy Pier offering a tropical menu selection and atmosphere is Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville Bar and Grill, east of the Chicago Children’s Museum.

Their dishes make this restaurant the closest thing you can find as an island paradise in the heart of the Midwest, so be sure to stop by for a craft margarita when dining with your friends and family.

In my opinion, their best dishes are Jimmy’s Jammin’ Jambalaya, Garlic Bacon Burger, Landshark Lager Fish & Chips, and Crispy Coconut Shrimp, especially when paired with a side of fries, onion rings, or black beans. They also have a kid’s menu for children ages 12 and under.

Don’t miss out on their Blueberry Pomegranate Margarita or other tropical bar specials.

Carson’s Ribs Prime Steaks & Famous Barbecue Chicago

465 E Illinois St, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-280-9200
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Nestled minutes away from Bennett Park, within East River Plaza, Carson’s Ribs Prime Steaks & Famous Barbecue Chicago is your best option if you’re craving slow-smoked, classic steakhouse favorites in a refined setting.

While Navy Pier’s sweets can fill you up throughout the day, Carson’s meatiest dishes help you end your night in style as you let your meat soak in your mouth.

Consider ordering their full rack of Baby Back Ribs, Prime Rib, Slow-Smoked BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich, or Chargrilled Mediterranean Shrimp as your main course after starting with their cornbread.

I enjoy them with Steak Fries or an Ultimate Double Baked Potato. They also have an extensive wine, beer, and cocktail list. Finally, finish your night with a hot fudge sundae.

IDOF – I Dream of Falafel

600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-722-6997
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If you’re searching for the best Halal restaurants in Navy Pier, IDOF – I Dream of Falafel, is the best go-to destination for authentic Mediterranean cuisine. It’s a minimalist, casual setting found near the Centennial Wheel.

I recommend stopping by here for your next lunch or dinner if you’re interested in healthier, vegan-friendly dining options.

IDOF lets you customize your own pita, wrap, or plate with the bases, proteins, sauces, and toppings of your liking.

During my last visit to Navy Pier, I ordered a wrap with rice, baby spinach, falafel, lettuce, pickles, onions, and spicy tomato sauce. Best of all, these ingredients are gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian-friendly.

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The Purple Pig Restaurant

444 Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-464-1744
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Another Mediterranean Navy Pier restaurant I recommend checking out is The Purple Pig Restaurant, near Tribune Tower and The Wrigley Building.

This chic and airy gastropub primarily serves pork-based dishes for its hungriest crowds. Their open kitchen gives it a more spacious appeal if you’re feeling cramped.

Don’t miss out on their Pork Blade Steak, Guinea Hen, Pork Belly, or Squid Ink Tagliatelle. However, if you prefer something lighter, they also have promising cured meats and cheeses for you to sample.

I also recommend adding their Black Truffle special to any dish to enhance them with seasonal flavors. Be sure to end your night with some gelato and dessert wine.


Multiple Locations
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With locations in several areas of Chicago, including the Streeterville neighborhood, minutes from Navy Pier, Beatrix is one of the top places I recommend for healthier dining and fresh coffee.

It has a cozy, rustic ambiance that’s ideal for enjoying a meal at any time of day, all week long. Their culinary team prioritizes using the finest ingredients for bringing out the best flavors.

Whenever I stop by here to eat, I usually have their Truffled Pillow Ravioli with Mushrooms for dinner, Ham & Cheese Croissant with Pineapple Yuzu Lemonade for breakfast, and a Prime Burger for lunch.

Be sure to stop by their pastry counter for a dark chocolate brownie or salted caramel cookie and their coffee bar for their specialty brews.

Robert’s Pizza and Dough Company

465 N McClurg Ct, Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-265-1328
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The final option on my list of the best restaurants in Navy Pier that I recommend for any newcomer to Chicago is Robert’s Pizza and Dough Company, a stylish pizzeria overlooking Ogden Slip.

Their thin-crust pizza offers enticing international flavors you can enjoy with any drink from their bar.

I’m a fan of their Caramelized Onion Pizza, Chicken Parm Sandwich, Gnocchi, and Seafood Pizza. You can also customize a pie with your favorite traditional and premium toppings. 

Don’t forget to try their Spiked Lemonade, Cranberry Mule, or Red Sangria to enhance your dinner. They also offer brunch on the weekends, so be sure to check out their signature Huevos Rancheros Pizza for a zesty sensation.

The restaurants in Navy Pier offer some of the tastiest flavors in Chicago’s Near North Side area. Since many of them are within walking distance from several attractions and rides, you don’t have to wander around aimlessly if you’re craving a quick bite to eat. 

From barbecue dishes to sweets, there are plenty of goodies you don’t want to miss out on at this popular Midwest tourism destination.

Looking to try out Greek cuisine? There’s no need to travel abroad to get authentic Greek dishes. Check out these amazing Greek restaurants around Chi-town. I would also recommend you try the Greek bougatsa for dessert.

Did I leave out any Navy Pier restaurants on my list? If so, leave a comment below about your go-to dining spots so I can check out their best menu options.

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Written by Brian Nagele

Brian attended West Virginia University, then started his career in the IT industry before following his passion for marketing and hospitality. He has over 20 years experience in the restaurant and bar industry.

As a former restaurant owner, he knows about running a food business and loves to eat and enjoy cocktails on a regular basis. He constantly travels to new cities tasting and reviewing the most popular spots.

Follow him on LinkedIn, Instagram, Quora, Google Guide and Facebook.