21 bucket list eats you need to try in Vancouver at least once

Nov 23 2021, 5:00 pm

Whether you’ve only got a day in Vancouver, or you live here year-round, there’s no denying that there are some things in this beautiful city that you just have to eat.

Eating all of Vancouver’s drool-worthy food is an impossible feat, so we’ve narrowed it down to just 21 essential incredible eats that you need to try while in town.

Here are some bucket list eats you need to try in, and around, Vancouver at least once.

Fish and Chips from Pajo’s Fish & Chips


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Since 1985, Pajo’s has been frying up locally caught cod, salmon, and halibut fish to a beautiful golden brown and pairing it with thick-cut chips. The fish and chips are served in a nostalgic newspaper cone that makes the classic pairing both easy and fun to eat.

Address: 12351 3 Avenue, Richmond
Phone: 604-272-1588

Address: 12771 Seventh Avenue, Richmond
Phone: 604-204-0767

Address: 2800 Murray Street, Port Moody
Phone: 604-469-2289

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Liege Waffles from Medina Cafe


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The liege-style waffles at Cafe Medina are served fresh throughout the day, but it’s the impressive line-up of dips that put Medina’s waffles a notch above the rest. Pair your waffles with an array of gourmet dips like white chocolate, pistachio, chocolate lavender, and creme de fruit de passion.

Address: 780 Richards Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-879-3114

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Pasta from Savio Volpe


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Savio Volpe is more than just phenomenal pasta, it is an intimate atmosphere that feels like home when you dine there. The menu rotates daily at Savio Volpe, so it’s difficult to pick just one must-try pasta, but it hardly matters because all of their pasta creations will excite your tastebuds and leave you wanting more.

Address: 165 Kingsway Street, Vancouver

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Fried Chicken from Juke Fried Chicken


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While there have been some changes over at Juke since we last updated this list, the delectable chicken you can order from them has definitely stayed the same. Whether you’re dining in at Chickadee, the Keefer Street cocktail concept, or looking to order for takeout or delivery, you can expect Juke’s signature gluten-free fried chicken, ribs, and sides to hit the spot.

Address: 182 Keefer Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-336-5853

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Hot Dogs from Japadog


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The Japanese-influenced hot dogs from Japadog have long been an integral part of Vancouver’s diverse food identity and are a perfect example of the culinary scene’s diversity. Over the course of 15 years, Japadog has perfected the Oroshi, a bratwurst that is topped with a special soya sauce glaze and freshly grated radish.

Address: Multiple locations around Vancouver and Metro Vancouver

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Fish Tacos from Tacofino


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Whoever said ‘perfect’ isn’t attainable clearly hasn’t tried Tacofino’s signature fish taco. A piece of flakey pacific cod is battered and fried to a golden brown and wrapped in a flour tortilla with cabbage slaw, chipotle mayo, and a refreshing salsa fresca. What began as a small operation in Tofino has now expanded to several outposts and food trucks around Vancouver.

Address: 15 West Cordova Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-899-7907

Address: 1025 Mainland Street, Vancouver
Phone: 778-379-8226

Address: 2327 East Hastings Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-253-8226

Address: 8 E 5th Avenue, Vancouver
Phone: 604-709-0015

Address: 1909 W 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Phone: 604-620-8729

Address: 122-1050 W Pender, Vancouver
Phone: 604-428 8453

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Chocolates from BETA5 Chocolates

Beta5 Cafe

Beta5 Cafe

The local sweet spot offers drool-worthy contemporary chocolates and pastries like cream puffs. The chocolate here is truly out-of-this-world delicious and you can get unique flavours like Green Curry, Sparkling Raspberry, and Tequila Sunrise to name just a few.

Address: 409 Industrial Avenue, Vancouver


BBQ from HK BBQ Master


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This local gem is much-loved by foodies in and around Metro Vancouver. HK BBQ Master offers patrons traditional Hong Kong-style BBQ in downtown Richmond.

Address: 4651 No. 3 Road, Richmond
Phone: 604-272-6568


Seafood Tower from Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar


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The Seafood Tower at Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar is a breathtaking sight. Indulge in wild side stripe shrimp, albacore tuna tataki, read island mussel escabèche Dungeness crab Louie, snow crab legs, and local oysters.

Address: 845 Burrard Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-642-2900


Puffcream from Popina Canteen


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Ever wonder where the world’s first-ever Puffcream dessert was offered? Look no further than Granville Island’s popular shipping container eatery, Popina. Enjoy creamy natural soft serve piped into a freshly baked choux pastry and topped with playful and seasonal ingredients like sea salt toffee sauce or freeze-dried blueberries.

Address: 1691 Johnston Street, Vancouver (Northwest side of the Granville Island Public Market)
Phone: 604-428-7518

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Avocado Toast on Sourdough Bread from Nelson the Seagull


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Nelson the Seagull is home to Vancouver’s quintessential and ultimate hipster breakfast: The Avo Toast. There is no denying the avocado toast is easy to execute, so what makes Nelson the Seagull’s version stand out?  The thick-cut pieces of buttered sourdough are baked fresh daily in-house before receiving a generous layer of fresh avocado. For more protein, ask for a poached egg.

Address: 315 Carrall Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-681-5776

Pizza from Via Tevere Pizzeria

Talk about a neighbourhood gem, Via Tevere offers over a dozen pies made in its wood-fired oven. These pizzas are fired up to 500 degrees before hitting your plate, so you know they are fire. The folks behind this spot also opened a plant-based pizza spot worth checking out too, Pizzeria Grano.

Address: 1190 Victoria Drive, Vancouver

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Fried Chicken French Toast from Jam Cafe


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Vancouverites are obsessed with Jam Cafe’s all-day breakfast menu and are willing to wait upwards of 40 minutes in line to get their fill. Jam Cafe’s menu is arguably all epic, but if we had to narrow it down to a single ultimate dish, we would say the Fried Chicken French Toast is deserving of the title. Thick-cut brioche toast serves as the base for a fried chicken breast, pickled cabbage, jalapeño sour cream, and an amazing maple bourbon BBQ glaze.

Address: 556 Beatty Street, Vancouver
Phone: 778-379-1992

Address: 2153 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Phone: 604-423-3350

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Donuts from Lee’s Donuts


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Lee’s Donuts is the OG of the Vancouver donut scene and has been operating in the Granville Island Public Market since 1979. Lee’s sticks to the classics when it comes to donuts like their honey, chocolate glazed, and sugar rolled.

This spot just opened a pop-up in Metro Vancouver worth checking out if you can’t make it down to Granville Island.

Address: Inside Granville Island Public Market – 1689 Johnston Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-685-4021


Nashville Hot Chicken from The Downlow Chicken Shack


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Vancouver’s first Nashville hot chicken spot, Downlow Chicken Shack, has quickly become a staple in the city’s foodie scene. Whether you’re obsessed with secret menu items like the Fries on the DL or just love that straight-up fried chicken, this joint is a must-try when you’re in Vancouver.

Address: 905 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Phone: 778-866-5662

Address: 6065 University Boulevard, Vancouver


Salmon Oshi Sushi from Miku


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Miku waterfront first introduced Vancouver to Aburi pressed sushi over a decade ago in 2008 and ever since then, we cannot get enough of the flame-seared pressed sushi. The Salmon Oshi Sushi is by far the most popular and begins with a base of seasoned rice that then gets a thin piece of fresh salmon on top and finished with a thin slice of jalapeño.

Address: 200 Granville Street # 70, Vancouver
Phone: 604-568-3900


Ice Cream Sandwiches from Made by Mister


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These ice cream sandwiches are made with liquid nitrogen and local products in a ton of amazing flavours. Think Double Oreo, Matcha, and torched Crème Brûlée – this Yaletown neighbourhood spot is a must-hit for sweet treats.

Address: 1141 Mainland Street, Vancouver
Phone: 778-379-2833

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Ramen from Ramen Danbo


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With a fall and winter climate that mirrors Japan’s, it comes as no surprise that Vancouver too has an affinity for ramen spots. The noodle and soup bowls at Ramen Danbo feature broths rich in ‘umami’ flavour and noodles that are a little on the firm side making them ideal for slurping. There’s usually always a lineup at these spots, signalling it’s one of the best around.

Address: 1333 Robson Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-559-8112

Address: 1833 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Phone: 778-379-8977

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Bagels from Rosemary Rocksalt


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The savoury counterpart to donuts, Rosemary Rocksalt’s Montreal-style bagels have the most delightful chew that goes oh so well with their house-mixed cream cheese spreads. There are multiple flavours to choose from, but we are partial to their namesake Rosemary Rocksalt variety. Get a sandwich or take it with cream cheese, these bagels are top-notch and there’s no denying that.

Address: 2515 Main Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-874-4570

Address: 1350 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Phone: 604-254-7202

Address: 1669 Lonsdale Avenue, North Vancouver
Phone: 604-929-1817

Address: #715 – 333 Brooksbank Avenue, North Vancouver
Phone: 604-770-1595

Address: 11688 Steveston Highway, Richmond
Phone: 604-274-9800

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Dim Sum from Kirin Seafood Restaurant


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There are a ton of amazing places to enjoy dim sum in Vancouver, but Kirin never disappoints with their dim sum spread as it boasts authentic flavour and is also very reasonably priced. To truly experience dim sum, come with a larger group so you are able to sample several of their award-winning dishes like steamed prawn dumplings, pan-fried pork belly buns and xiao long bao, AKA soup dumplings.

Address: 1172 Alberni Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-682-8833

Address: 350 Gifford Street, New Westminster
Phone: 604-528-8833

Address: 7900 Westminster Highway, Richmond
Phone: 604-303-8833

Wings from Phnom Penh 


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This Cambodian-Vietnamese restaurant has mastered the art of frying chicken wings to golden perfection, yet still locking in all the moisture and flavour inside. The wings are tossed in a blend of spices before getting a bath in the fryer. The skin is crispy while the meat inside is succulent, practically falling off the bones.

Address: 244 East Georgia Street, Vancouver
Phone: 604-734-8898

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With files from Gurleen Boparai and Hanna McLean

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