Attention foodies: put on your stretchy pants and get ready to chow down at the best places to eat in Chiang Mai!

Chiang Mai is one of the most popular destinations in Thailand, and if you’re a foodie like me, you know that it is also home to some of the best food in the country. 

With its mix of Northern Thai and international flavors, it’s no surprise that Chiang Mai has become a mecca for foodies around the world. 

One of the reasons why I love Chiang Mai is that you can find any kind of food you’re craving. And some of the best food in town costs just a couple of bucks!

As someone who has lived in Chiang Mai and eats out for nearly every meal, I can confidently say that I know all the best places to eat here. Whether you are looking for traditional northern Thai dishes or an international restaurant experience, Chiang Mai has everything to offer when it comes to great food. 

But how do you decide where to eat? To help guide your tasty explorations, here I’ve compiled a Chiang Mai food guide of my must-try list of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai.

Best Places to Eat in Chiang Mai

1. Khao Soi Lung Prakit Kad KomKhao Soi Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai is famous for Khao Soi, a spicy coconut noodle soup, so it’s only right we kick off the list of best places to eat in Chiang Mai with the best khao soi!

Khao Soi Lung Prakit Kad Kom is a must-try restaurant in Chiang Mai. Believe me, I’ve eaten at dozens of khao soi restaurants in Chiang Mai, and this one is the best!

It’s not only famed for its strong flavor and great balance between coconut and spiciness but also the fact that Netflix filmed an episode of Somebody Feed Phil here – which is a testament to its quality. 

The local I met at the restaurant told me you’ll often have to wait in line outside before getting a table – despite how popular they are, they still charge an amazingly low price of 60 baht (less than $2 USD) per bowl!

Chicken khao soi is the most traditional, but you’ll want to order the beef khao soi here.

Location: 53 Suriyawong 5 Rd, Tambon Hai Ya, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50100

What to Order: Beef Khao Soi

Price: 60 baht

2. SP Chicken

SP Chicken is one of the most popular places to eat in Chiang Mai, especially for travelers – and for good reason! 

Located in the Old Town, SP Chicken serves up amazing grilled chicken that’s so delicious, you’ll probably come back before you leave town. Order a half chicken per person (whole chicken for 2 people) plus sticky rice – and don’t be shy about asking for extra sauce! I like to order the green papaya salad too.

One thing to keep in mind when visiting SP Chicken is that it’s so popular, they often run out of chickens – so make sure to get there early! Even with its popularity though, SP Chicken still offers amazing value at a great price; you won’t regret eating here.

If you don’t mind a short trip to the Nimman neighborhood, Roast Chicken Wichienbury is even better (more down below!). 

Just around the corner from SP Chicken lies Akha Ama Cafe – one of the best coffees you’ll find in Thailand. Head over if you need a pick-me-up after gorging yourself on chicken!

Location: 9/1 ถนน สามล้าน ซอย 1 พระสิงห์ Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Chicken and sticky rice

Price: 190 baht for whole chicken and sticky rice

3. Changphuak Suki aka Suki KokaNight Market Stir Fry Chiang Mai

Whether you are a local or just visiting Chiang Mai, Changphuak Suki in the Chang Phueak night market, located just outside of the moat, is one of the best places to get a true taste of real Thai cuisine.  While living in Chiang Mai, I ate here a couple of times a week!

It’s so popular that you’ll have to take a number and wait to be seated – yes, even at a humble food stall! 

The wait is usually about 15-20 minutes but can be up to an hour during peak times. While waiting, you can wander around the night market to pick up some snacks.

When it’s finally your turn, you’ll see your number flash on the screen – time to order at the register! Ordering is made easy with their picture menu. All you have to do is choose between a dry stirfry or soup dish for your base and select your protein. I like to go with the dry noodles and pork combo – it’s delicious! You can also add extra noodles or veggies (cabbage) if you’re feeling extra hungry.

Once you get your food, all that’s left to do is enjoy! I pour the provided sauce right into the bowl. The sukiyaki here is worth the wait – the flavors are rich yet subtle – and I know I’m not alone in thinking that as I always see people coming back for more.

Changphuak Suki in Chiang Mai is a must-visit for any foodie traveler, and definitely one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai!

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Location: นพรัตน์, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Dry Noodles with Pork

Price: 55 baht

4. Chang Phueak Khao Kha Moo Pork Leg Rice (Cowboy Hat Lady)

Every Chiang Mai food guide will tell you about the famous Cowboy Hat Lady, a food stall in a humble night market that serves Chinese-style pork leg rice. The stall was made famous by Anthony Bourdain.

Chang Phueak Khao Kha Moo Pork Leg Rice is a must-try for anyone visiting Chiang Mai. The tender braised pork melts in your mouth.

I’ll be honest, this place was a bit of a letdown for me – I had high hopes based on every blog I read about the best restaurants in Chiang Mai, and I didn’t find my dish to be as flavorful as I hoped. A bit bland, even, although the pork was very tender. Maybe they were having a bad day!

Despite my own experience, it’s still worth trying this authentic pork leg rice. Everyone has different tastes, and so many people love it here! My friend swears by this place and comes for dinner a couple of times a week. 

It’s so cheap, and you can try everything else this small night market has to offer while you’re there! 

Location: ประตูเมือง Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Pork Leg and an Egg with Rice

Price: 60 baht

5. The House by Ginger

The House by Ginger

The House by Ginger, located in the Old Town, is one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai if you’re a traveler without a tight budget. 

My friend and I came here after a full day of scooter adventures, and we were starving. We found it by accident after being turned away from Baan Landai (below) without a reservation. 

The platter of appetizers was delicious. All of the dishes we ordered were amazing. We licked the plates clean!

And don’t forget about their cocktails – they are worth trying! 

The food is high-end Thai with elevated classic dishes, which may be pricey for Thai standards but still affordable if you’re traveling from a Western country. 

If you’re looking for an amazing dining experience with unique flavors and excellent service, The House by Ginger is for you.

Location: 199 Mun Mueang Rd, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Appetizer Platter, Fresh Spring Rolls, Pineapple Fried Rice

Price: 

6. Baan Landai Fine Thai CuisineBaan Landai Fine Thai Cuisine

The Baan Landai Fine Thai Cuisine restaurant in the Old Town deserves its place on the Michelin food guide!

As one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai, it’s necessary to make a reservation several days in advance, as it can get quite busy even during the low season. My friend and I visited early on a weeknight and still couldn’t get a table!

The menu offers a great selection of dishes, featuring unique takes on traditional Thai cuisine. The pork ribs in red wine sauce are particularly delicious, as well as the lotus flower salad and pomelo shrimp salad. You should also try their mocktails or wine selection for an extra special experience.

While more expensive than most Thai restaurants in Chiang Mai, Baan Landai Fine Thai​​​​ Restaurant is worth every penny, definitely not a tourist trap (although it is mostly visited by tourists). If you’re looking for a truly special dining experience in Chiang Mai, look no further than Baan Landai Fine Thai Restaurant. 

Location: 252/13-14 Prapokklao Rd ถนน ศรีภูมิ Amphoe Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Mocktails, Pork Ribs in Red Wine Sauce, Crab Fried Rice

Price: 1,000+ baht

7. Neng Earthen Jar Roast PorkNeng Earthen Jar Roast Pork

Located a bit outside of the tourist areas across from a Mercedes Benz car dealership, Neng Earthen Jar Roast Pork serves unpretentious street food that both locals and tourists love! 

Inside, the place gets busy but there’s plenty of seating and you can watch as pork is cooked in huge clay jars. 

The skin is crackling crispy while the fat melts into the tender pork meat. The chicken here is also delicious. My recommendation is to enjoy it with sticky rice. I also had a side of very spicy papaya salad which was amazing (be sure to ask for just one chili if you can’t handle a lot of spice). 

Overall, Neng Earthen Jar Roast Pork offers great value for money and a truly unique dining experience that can’t be missed when you’re visiting Chiang Mai – one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai!

Location: 50300 Chang Wat Chiang Mai, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai, Muang Samut Rd

What to Order: Roasted Pork

Price: 70 baht

8. Papaya Salad and Sausage Lady at the Sunday Night MarketNight Bazaar

If you can plan your itinerary to be in Chiang Mai on a Sunday, don’t miss the Sunday Night Market!

There are a few food courts on the walking streets, plus food vendors scattered all around, but I usually head straight for the main food court. Try everything that catches your eye, there are no wrong answers! 

Be sure to try the Papaya Salad (Som Tom) made by the lady in the main food court – she makes my favorite papaya salad in town. I usually grab a piece of fried chicken from the stand next door to snack on while I wait for my freshly made papaya salad to be ready.

Then grab a sausage from the stand on the other side of the court (you’ll find it easily because there’s always a line). Choose between sour or spicy sausages. Or do yourself a favor and try both!

It’s easy to see why this market is one of the most popular places to eat in Chiang Mai!

Location: Rachadamnoen Rd, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Everything! Papaya salad, sausage, meat skewers

Price: 20-60 baht per item

9. Pad Thai Por KongPad Thai

Pad Thai is one of the most popular dishes for travelers to eat while in Thailand, and I love family-run Pad Thai Por Kong!

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The friendly family serves up some of the best Pad Thai in Chiang Mai from the parking lot in front of their home. It doesn’t get more local than that! 

They aren’t open too late so be sure to arrive before 8 pm before they close up. 

The portions are huge. I got the shrimp pad Thai and went to bed very happy that night. You can also try pad thai with wonton instead of noodles, or get a mix of both. 

They have a fridge full of cold drinks (help yourself) and a powerful fan to keep you cool. 

Pad Thai may not be the most adventurous dish you can eat in Chiang Mai, but this place serves up some of the best in town!

Location: 205 Ratchamanka Rd, Tambon Phra Sing, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Large Pad Thai with Shrimp and Egg

Price: 80 baht

10. Aroy DeeAroy Dee

At Aroy Dee, I had the pleasure of meeting someone for lunch when I first arrived in Chiang Mai. It’s not a fancy place, which is what I love about it! You can come for a quick lunch and try all sorts of Thai dishes to see which one you like.

The basil pork (krao pow) was incredibly flavorful and paired nicely with the fresh fruit smoothie. My friend was very happy with her curry.

Aroy Dee has an extensive menu of classic Thai dishes like Pad Thai, Sauteed Morning Glory, and Pineapple Fried Rice – all at an inexpensive price. 

Service was fast and friendly, and they were even willing to make the food less spicy upon request. 

With so many delicious options in Old Town, Aroy Dee stands out as one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai.

Location: 157 Mun Mueang Rd, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50300

What to Order: Khao Soi, Fried Rice, and Fruit Smoothies

Price: 80 baht

11. 100 Flavors Craft Ice Cream100 Flavors Craft Ice Cream

There’s no better way to end a hot day in Chiang Mai than with delicious ice cream – a stop at 100 Flavors Craft Ice Cream is an absolute must! 

This small-batch, craft ice cream shop boasts over 100 different flavors, ranging from strange creations such as khao soi, salted egg, durian, Downy fabric softener, and mango sticky rice to more traditional flavors like vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry. They even offer delectable vegan sorbet options! 

The only downside is that they don’t allow customers to try any of the flavors before buying – so it’s a bit of a gamble. But isn’t that part of the fun?

Location: 25 Suthep Road, Srivichai Soi Suthep, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: 100 Flavors to Choose From!

Price: 1 scoop is 45 baht

Best Places to Eat in Chiang Mai’s Nimman Neighborhood

12. Sushi Umai

I am a sushi addict and snob, and cannot go a week without eating at Sushi Umai in the trendy Nimman neighborhood!

As someone who is used to paying a lot of money when I eat sushi in New York City, I am shocked by how cheap and high-quality Sushi Umai is. 

My bill for salmon sashimi, a large roll, and a couple of pieces of sushi is usually less than 1,000 baht. If your bill is over 1,000 baht, you can use your credit card.

They can get crowded at dinnertime, so your safest bet is to make a reservation if you don’t want to wait. As a solo diner, I’ve only ever had to wait 5 minutes for a single seat at the bar.

The food comes out extremely fast here, almost too fast. So if you want to enjoy a leisurely dinner, order a few bites at a time!

Location: 12 12 Nimmanahaeminda Road, Suthep, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Salmon Sashimi, Hotate Mentaiko Sushi, Spicy Salmon Aburi Maki Roll

Price: 900 baht

13. Roast Chicken Wichienbury

Sorry to all you SP Chicken lovers, but Roast Chicken Wichienbury is actually the best chicken restaurant in Chiang Mai, and it’s a secret the locals are keeping from you! If you’re able to get to the Nimman neighborhood for lunch, this is one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai. 

SP chicken is really good too, but I like this place even more. Plus, it’s even cheaper, and they don’t run out of chicken.

Wichienbury serves roast chicken with a sweet and sour type of sauce on the side.  I usually order half chicken for myself, plus sticky rice and a papaya salad. It’s not unusual for the papaya salad to come out last.

Help yourself to some free filtered ice and water, or pop open one of the soft drinks left at your table. When it’s time to pay, just walk to the staff and ask for your bill. There’s a sink at the back to wash up after you eat.

My only complaint is that Wichienbury, like most chicken places in town, is only open for lunch! 

Location: QXWC+P45, Nimmana Haeminda Rd Lane 11, Suthep, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Chicken and sticky rice

Price: 100 baht

14. Ging Grai

Ging Grai is one of my new favorite restaurants in Chiang Mai – I’ve eaten here multiple times. I love that the menu organizes the dishes by region, so you know where your dishes originated from!

The food is flavorful, fresh and features dishes from all over Thailand. I’ve tried the green and red curries, their Pad Thai, stewed pork, and tom yum – all of which were excellent. 

Their mocktails are also really good! 

The restaurant has two floors with more seating upstairs, so don’t be discouraged when you see it looking busy. 

It’s a bit more expensive than some nearby eateries, but the quality of food and service makes it well worth the money. 

Highly recommend it if you’re looking for an excellent meal in Chiang Mai’s Nimman neighborhood.

Location: เลขที่ 18 Nimmana Haeminda Rd Lane 11, Tambon Su Thep, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

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What to Order: Pad Thai, Red or Green Curry, Stewed Pork

Price: 350 baht

15. Mu’s Katsu (near Nimman)

I didn’t think I’d like katsu as much as I did, but boy was I wrong! 

This little hole-in-the-wall restaurant is a must-visit if you’re ever in Chiang Mai. Mu’s Katsu is the best katsu restaurant in the city.

They specialize in Japanese-style fried pork and chicken cutlets doused in flavorful Japanese-style curry, served on rice, but they also do other dishes like gyoza.

The katsu here is really tasty. It’s lightly battered and served with a variety of sauces depending on the type of katsu you order. If you’re asked if you want an egg, the answer is yes.

I’m drooling just thinking about this place!

Location: opposite, Nimmanahaemin Soi 8, Tambon Su Thep, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Demi Glaze Katsudon

Price: 150 baht

Best Restaurants in Chiang Mai for Vegetarians

16. Goodsouls Kitchen

Goodsouls Kitchen is an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans visiting Chiang Mai. I didn’t eat meat for years before I started traveling, so I know how hard it can be to find quality vegetarian restaurants when traveling!

With a diverse menu of vegan options and healthy alternatives such as smoothie bowls, pasta, and gluten-free dishes available – Goodsouls earns its spot as one of the top restaurants in Chiang Mai. The mushroom burger here is their signature dish and it’s delicious!  Don’t leave without trying their vegan desserts and milkshakes. And the Thai food is good too!

The portion sizes are generous, the ingredients are high quality, and there is always plenty of seating available. It’s also nice to have air conditioning to take a break from the Thailand humidity! 

Plus they take credit cards which can often be difficult to find in Chiang Mai. 

Altogether, if you’re looking for a great vegetarian restaurant in Chiang Mai then look no further than Goodsouls Kitchen!

Location: 52 Sinharat Rd Lane 3, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Smoothie Bowl, Mushroom Burger, Milkshake

Price: 250 baht

17. Reform Kafe

Reform Kafe is one of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai for vegetarians. The combination of delectable dishes and a charming ambiance makes it a top choice for plant-based food enthusiasts. 

You can find gluten-free options here too, just keep in mind it’s all made in the same kitchen with the same pans as the rest of the food.

Whether you’re craving a vegan burger or some of the best vegetarian khao soi in Chiang Mai, you’ll find it here! The papaya salad and fried tofu are some other favorites.

The staff members are friendly, attentive, and knowledgeable about the menu. They are more than happy to accommodate dietary restrictions or offer recommendations based on individual preferences. Don’t be afraid to tell them what spice level you want!

With its chill vibes and magical atmosphere, complete with trees and water features like fountains and a koi pond, it makes for a wonderfully relaxing spot to enjoy some food.

Location: 1 4 Sri Poom Rd, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200

What to Order: Vegetarian Khao Soi

Price: 250 baht

Top Places to Eat in Chiang Mai FAQs Chiang Mai night market

Does Chiang Mai have good food?

Chiang Mai has some of the best food in Thailand! Whether you’re looking for a traditional Northern Thai dish like Khao Soi or something more familiar like pad Thai or green curry, you’ll find it in Chiang Mai. Chiang Mai also has great international restaurants, something that many Southeast Asian cities don’t have!

What is the most popular food in Chiang Mai?

The most popular food in Chiang Mai is Khao Soi, a Northern Thai dish made with egg noodles and curry. It is usually served in a bowl topped with crunchy fried noodles and garnished with lime. Other popular dishes include Pad Thai, Green Curry, Papaya Salad, Tom Yum Soup, and Sticky Rice with Mango. 

Conclusion: Best Restaurants in Chiang Mai

If you’re looking for the best places to eat in Chiang Mai, then you won’t be disappointed. As a proud food snob, I can tell you that the Northern Thai food of Chiang Mai gives the rest of Thailand a run for its money when it comes to delicious eats!

You can’t leave town without trying the best khao soi in town at Khao Soi Lung Prakit Kad Kom or the hidden gem Wichienbury for a tasty lunch of chicken and sticky rice. When you need your sushi fix, head to Umai Sushi in Nimman!

With all of these amazing restaurants available, visitors can easily find delicious meals while enjoying the city’s unique culture and vibrant atmosphere. 

So if you’re looking for some of the best places to eat in Chiang Mai, look no further than these top restaurants.

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