Although I love the Nebraska homestyle favorites I have discovered in Omaha, sometimes I crave more international flavors.
When I first moved to Omaha, I looked up “what food is Nebraska known for?” The results?
- Steak and potatoes
- Dorothy Lynch salad dressing
- Rueben sandwich
- Chilli and cinnamon rolls
- Runza (a beef and cabbage bierock)
- Kool-Aid (Did you know Kool-Aid was invented in Nebraska?)
All these foods signal home comforts to me. And while I love that Nebraska was the home to Edwin Perkins who discovered Kool-Aid, sometimes my taste buds long for tastes farther from home.
Fortunately, Omaha is also home to a variety of international food!
Here are some of my family’s favorite Omaha-area international food places:
Korean Garden in Ralston: If I’m watching a show, it is probably a Korean drama—and it’s not long before I get hungry for Korean food! My family and I have tried a couple of Korean restaurants in Omaha, and this is our favorite because the tteokbokki is delicious!
Asian Family Market: My kids love to go here to see the live fish, and I love to purchase unique snacks. They also have a cafe with affordable dishes. One of our favorites, although a little spicy for my daughter, is the bamboo shoots.
Kathmandu Momo’s Station: These Nepalese street food dumplings are fun finger food! There are two of these restaurants in Omaha, but we like to go to the one at Inner Rails Food Hall because there are other novel food restaurants nearby.
Chippy’s: When my family traveled to Scotland in 2019, we came back with a love for cherry bakewells, so we were thrilled when we found we could purchase the same taste in Omaha! Chippy’s has all things UK in their shop, and I’m excited about their plans to open a restaurant in 2025!
Lithuanian Bakery and Deli: With two locations and more than 40 years of service, the Lithuanian Bakery is an Omaha staple. Their soup is delicious, and the apricot torte that they are known for is not to be dismissed!
International Bakery Inc: Grab a tray and a pair of tongs and have your pick of authentic Hispanic pastries. They have all the classics, and what I love about their sweets is that they aren’t too sugary! (You can have more than one!)
El Arepón Venezuelan Food in Bellevue: We first discovered this restaurant when my son was doing research on the country of Venezuela. We’ve been back several times since, and we haven’t had a meal we didn’t love! (Although, the arepas with chicken salad is my go-to favorite)
Variedades Salvadoreñas: We went here with our friend from El Salvador, and although we ordered too much food, the pupusas were hot and delicious! (Be sure to bring cash.)
Isla del Mar Restaurante: This restaurant has two locations with fantastic underwater murals! My kids were impressed with the complete fish the table next to us ordered and vowed they would order that next time.
Le Petit Paris Bakery Omaha: I once had a pistachio eclair here that made my heart sing. It was creamy and sweet and crispy—all the things you want in your eclair! (I have yet to share this place with my kids. Maybe I’ll keep it to myself for a while.)
With so many options, how do you choose?
These are just some of our favorites, but I’m constantly getting more recommendations.
My friend, who lived in Japan briefly, said that Omaha’s Rizin Japanese Ramen is the best for ramen. Another friend who spent time in Africa says her favorite international restaurant is Lalibela Restaurant because of its authentic Ethiopian dishes. She is also looking forward to trying the newly-opened Lucy Ethiopian Coffee, Omaha’s first Ethiopian coffee experience. My husband loves Jim and Jennie’s Greek Village, but he has yet to take me.
I’m so grateful Omaha has so many delightful options, and I wish I could try them all!