A Foodie’s Guide to Mecca: 10 Must-Try Restaurants and Local Cuisine

1. Al Baik

Address: King Abdulaziz Road, Al Ghassaniyah, Mecca
Website: www.albaik.com

Al Baik is an iconic fast-food chain that has become synonymous with Mecca. Known for its mouthwatering fried chicken and crispy broasted (broiled and roasted) chicken, Al Baik has been delighting locals and pilgrims alike since its inception in 1974. The secret to their famous recipe lies in a unique blend of spices and a special marination process that creates a flavorful and crispy coating.

Though Al Baik has now expanded to various locations across Saudi Arabia, the original branch in Mecca holds a special place in the hearts of food enthusiasts. The succulent chicken wings, juicy chicken tenders, and flavorful Arabian rice are a must-try for anyone visiting Mecca. Pair your meal with their signature garlic sauce for an explosion of flavors that will make your taste buds dance.

2. Al Tazaj

Address: Ibrahim Al Khalil Street, Al Zaher, Mecca
Website: www.altazaj.com

A trip to Mecca would be incomplete without experiencing the delightful Arabian grilled chicken at Al Tazaj. This renowned restaurant chain is a local favorite, offering a variety of succulent chicken dishes prepared on traditional charcoal grills. Al Tazaj uses a special marinade that infuses the chicken with aromatic spices, resulting in a tender and flavorsome meal.

In addition to their mouthwatering grilled chicken, Al Tazaj also serves a range of delectable Middle Eastern dishes such as mansaf (a traditional Jordanian rice dish), lamb kebabs, hummus, and fresh Arabic bread. The simple yet cozy ambiance of their restaurants provides the perfect setting to savor the authentic flavors of Mecca.

3. Al Ruwais Restaurant

Address: Abi Al Mu’ti Street, Al Mansour, Mecca

Nestled in the heart of Mecca, Al Ruwais Restaurant offers an exceptional dining experience with its exquisite seafood delights. This seafood joint prides itself on serving the freshest catch, sourced directly from the Red Sea. Their skilled chefs masterfully prepare an array of dishes, including grilled hammour (a local fish), jumbo prawns, and sautéed calamari.

Al Ruwais Restaurant’s prime location near the holy Haram makes it a popular choice among pilgrims seeking a scrumptious seafood feast after their spiritual journey. While you indulge in the flavors of the sea, take in the breathtaking views of Mecca’s skyline from their rooftop terrace. The combination of delectable food and stunning vistas truly makes this restaurant a hidden gem.

4. Al Mukhtara

Address: Wahj Al Hawtor, Al Diyafah, Mecca
Website: www.Mukhtara.com

If you crave authentic Arabian cuisine with a fusion twist, Al Mukhtara is the place to be. Located in the vibrant neighborhood of Al Diyafah, this trendy restaurant offers a unique culinary experience that combines traditional Saudi dishes with international flavors. The result is a diverse menu that caters to all taste preferences.

Some of the standout dishes at Al Mukhtara include their signature Saudi-style burger, flavorful kebabs with a modern twist, and creamy saffron-infused biryani. The restaurant’s contemporary ambiance, coupled with attentive staff, adds to its charm and has earned it a loyal following. Don’t forget to treat yourself to their heavenly date and caramel milkshake, a perfect blend of traditional and indulgent flavors.

5. Mumtaz Egyptian Food

Address: Al Hijrah Road, Al Fayhaa, Mecca

Craving a taste of Egypt while in Mecca? Look no further than Mumtaz Egyptian Food. This humble eatery specializes in serving authentic Egyptian cuisine, satisfying the palates of Egyptian expatriates and locals alike. The restaurant’s menu boasts an array of classic Egyptian dishes, each prepared with love and precision.

From the rich and aromatic koshari (a traditional Egyptian dish of rice, lentils, and pasta) to the tantalizing stuffed vine leaves, Mumtaz Egyptian Food offers a glimpse into Egypt’s vibrant culinary heritage. Their falafel, cooked to perfection with a mouthwatering crispy exterior and a fluffy interior, is a must-try. With its affordable prices and warm hospitality, this hidden gem brings a touch of Egypt to the heart of Mecca.

6. Al Shorfa Restaurant

Address: Umm Al Qura Road, Al Diyafah, Mecca

If you’re in the mood for a traditional Arabian feast, Al Shorfa Restaurant is a fantastic choice. Set in a charming traditional building with Arabian-style seating and decor, this restaurant offers an immersive cultural experience along with its delectable food.

Al Shorfa’s menu is replete with mouthwatering Arabic dishes like mandi (fragrant rice accompanied by slow-cooked meat), majboos (spiced rice with chicken), and mutabbaq (a savory pastry filled with meat and vegetables). The fragrant aromas and bold flavors will transport you to the heartland of Arabian cuisine. After your meal, don’t forget to try their traditional Arabic tea infused with herbs and spices, a perfect way to end the culinary journey.

7. Kazoku Restaurant

Address: Ibrahim Al Khalil Street, Al Zaher, Mecca

For those looking to explore other aspects of Asian cuisine, Kazoku Restaurant is a hidden gem in Mecca. This Japanese and Chinese fusion restaurant blends the best of both cuisines, offering a diverse menu that caters to a variety of tastes. The restaurant’s sleek and modern decor provides a tranquil setting to enjoy your meal.

From fresh and flavorful sushi rolls to sizzling Chinese stir-fries, Kazoku Restaurant has something for everyone. The teppanyaki grill adds an interactive element to the dining experience, as skilled chefs prepare your meal right in front of you. For a truly unique taste, try their tempura ice cream, a delightful combination of crispy tempura batter and creamy ice cream. Kazoku Restaurant is a refreshing departure from typical Arabian cuisine and a must-visit for adventurous foodies.

8. Dukkan Burger

Address: Al Aziziyah, Mecca

Looking for a satisfying burger joint in Mecca? Look no further than Dukkan Burger. This trendy burger place has gained popularity among locals for its juicy and flavorful gourmet burgers. Dukkan Burger prides itself on using high-quality ingredients, including premium beef, to create exceptional taste experiences.

The menu features an assortment of unique burger creations, including savory options like the “Mac Daddy” burger topped with mac and cheese, and the “Aloha” burger with a refreshing pineapple slice. Vegetarians are also catered to with delectable options like the “Mushroom Swiss” burger. With its cozy ambience and consistently delicious offerings, Dukkan Burger is a perfect spot to satisfy your burger cravings in Mecca.

9. Al Fawwaz Grill

Address: King Fahad Road, Ajyad, Mecca

For an upscale dining experience, head to Al Fawwaz Grill. This elegant restaurant specializes in sumptuous Middle Eastern cuisine, prepared with a modern twist. Al Fawwaz Grill prides itself on using the finest ingredients and innovative cooking techniques to create unforgettable flavors.

Indulge in their perfectly grilled lamb chops, tender Arabic-style kebabs, or succulent seafood dishes. The restaurant’s opulent decor, attentive service, and stunning views of the city skyline from its rooftop terrace create an ambiance befitting a gastronomic journey. Al Fawwaz Grill is a fantastic choice for special occasions or for those seeking refined Arabic cuisine in Mecca.

10. Al Bal Al Oud

Address: Al Iskan Street, Al Jamiah, Mecca

To satisfy your sweet tooth, make sure to visit Al Bal Al Oud. This popular pastry shop specializes in traditional Arabian sweets and pastries. The array of exquisite delights on display will capture your attention and leave you spoilt for choice.

From baklava (layers of pastry filled with nuts and sweet syrup) to kunafa (a sweet cheese pastry soaked in sugar syrup), Al Bal Al Oud offers a mouthwatering selection of treats. Pair your sweets with a fragrant cup of Arabic coffee or a refreshing glass of juice for a truly delightful experience. The shop’s central location and generous portion sizes make it a must-visit for dessert enthusiasts exploring the culinary scene of Mecca.

Embark on a gastronomic journey through Mecca and discover a myriad of culinary treasures. These ten must-try restaurants represent the diverse flavors that make Mecca a food lover’s paradise. Whether you’re seeking fast food classics, traditional Arabian feasts, or exotic fusions, Mecca has something to satisfy every palate.