Representation matters. Below, we’ll be featuring a lineup of black-owned businesses in Portland that serve up soul food, cajun delights, creole delicacies, Jamaican, and Ethiopian cuisine. From Po’Boys brown sugar ribs and fish baskets to 100% vegan, there’s plenty of melt-in-your mouth favorites that owners of color offer up to the Portland community. Here are the top 10 black-owned restaurants in Portland, Oregon (in no particular order)…
1. Selena’s Custom Kitchen – a popular food truck offering Southern recipes and seafood specialities
Selena’s Custom Kitchen in the Argay Terrace neighborhood is a food cart that serves authentic soul food.
Before their soul food cart, Selena and her brother cooked regularly at the Last Thursday street fair which takes place once a month. They used their earnings from their Last Thursday appearances to buy a food cart in 2020.
Fish baskets, crawfish dishes for adults and kids, and basa meals are some of their seafood selections.
Bask in the delicious soul food sides to go with the fish or chicken including cornbread, mustard greens, rice, and banana pudding.
Address: 13110 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland, OR 97230
2. Dirty Lettuce – a popular black-owned eatery serving 100% vegan authentic soul food
Dirty Lettuce in the Cully District gives authentic soul food a 100% vegan spin.
Their specialties are seitan BBQ ribs, the vegan catfish platter, french quarter krab cake platter, and the bayou fried shrimp platter.
Coleslaw, cajun mac and cheeze, Southern-style greens, crispy fried pickles, and sour cream onion mashed potatoes are some of the delicious vegan Southern sides available.
Address: 4727 NE Fremont St, Portland, OR 97213
3. Kee’s #Loaded Kitchen – a Black-owned, soul food restaurant on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard
Kee’s #Loaded Kitchen is located in the King District. They serve soul food such as the everything plate which features their most popular soul food selections.
Other main dishes include the crack fish dinner, fried pork chop dinner, smoked beef Dino rib platter, and the brown sugar rib dinner.
They serve authentic soul food sides including collard greens with smoked turkey, their twist on baked beans, potato salad, and rolls.
Finish your meal with delicious mini sweet potato pies or pound cake with berries and whip cream.
Address: 5020 NE Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Portland, OR 97212
4. Meals 4 Heels – Portland’s only meal delivery service catering to the sex worker community and menu is all vegan too
Meals 4 Heels is located in the Buckman District. Their motto is “that feel good meal” which we can see why Meals 4 Heels goes by this saying because all food is made vegetarian. If you want vegan options for certain dishes, ask them and they will accommodate you!
Try one of their 6 vegetarian or vegan bowls including The Verbal Tipper, Gettin’ That Paper (G.T.P.), The Magic City, The Money Bag, The Freegan Vegan, and The Cha Cha. A mix of noodles, vegetables, fruits, and sauce are the basis of each dish. Every dish is unique in its own way.
Made-in-house sparkling sodas are flavored with your choice of Honeybee brand flavored syrup. Order this refreshing beverage to wash down your delicious meal.
Address: 831 SE Salmon St #50, Portland, OR 97214
5. Po’ Shines Cafe De La Soul – a church-operated, nonprofit Cajun & BBQ restaurant
A local church in the Kenton District owns Po’ Shines Cafe De La Soul. The non-profit organization serves up delicious BBQ and Cajun soul food dishes including 5 types of Po’Boys, catfish, fried okra, hush puppies, sweet potatoes, and red beans and rice.
The Po’Buffet and the Big Daddy Buffet are their catering menu options. You can customize your catering menu with party-sized appetizers, main dishes, salads, and desserts.
Their signature catfish is moist and crispy, which is why most customers rave about this dish.
Address: 8139 N Denver Ave, Portland, OR 97217
6. Aberus Ethiopian Restaurant – fresh, authentic and delicious Ethiopian food with Gluten Free Injera
The Aberus Ethiopian Restaurant is stationed in the King District and takes a different approach to its food theme by offering Ethiopian cuisine.
With every order, you get a free gluten-free injera. It is a soft and pillowy flatbread made with teff flour and is reminiscent of Ethiopian culture.
Gomen, raw beef, and dulet kitfo are your options for a dish that features spiced and minced beef with red peppers.
Tibs, wot, alcoholic beverages, and non-alcoholic drinks are also on the menu.
Address: 438 NE Killingsworth St, Portland, OR 97211
7. Le Bontemps Café & Catering – a new southern-style restaurant in N.E. Portland
Next time you’re in the Eliot District, stop by Le Bontemps Cafe & Catering for tasty and authentic soul food cuisine.
The college graduate chef named Andrea heads the cafe and the Cajun and Southern-inspired meals are all her recipes.
Their signature dishes include seafood gumbo, crawfish etouffee, crawfish bread, and bayou broccoli balls.
They have 8 different types of Po’Boys including alligator, shrimp, chicken, veggie, lobster, oysters, catfish, and pulled pork. The same meats that you get for your Po’Boys can also act as toppings if you want a smothered potato dish.
Address: 2716 NE Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Portland, OR 97212
8. Jamaican Homestyle Cuisine – serves authentic Jamaican Cuisine in the heart of Portland!
Jamaican Homestyle Cuisine utilizes local ingredients to bring the taste of Jamaica to Portland.
Try their jerk chicken wings, curry chicken meal, oxtail meal, steamed cabbage, and rice and beans to get an authentic taste of Jamaican cuisine.
If you want oxtails that melt in your mouth, vegetables steamed to perfection, and chicken reminiscent of the Jamaican islands, come to Jamaican Homestyle Cuisine next time you are in the Humboldt District.
Address: 441 N Killingsworth St, Portland, OR 97217
9. POBOYZ Cajun Creole Kitchen – promises to transport you to the streets of New Orleans with great veggie options too
Downtown Portland’s POBOYZ Cajun Creole Kitchen serves up their most signature PoBoyz Shrimp Sandwich amongst other soul food favorites.
The restaurant is known to dish out the best Po’Boys in Portland with other options such as hot honey chicken, fried oysters, vegetarian cajun sausage, and other meat options.
If you don’t want a Po’Boy on a roll, you can opt for the Po-Bowl instead.
Catfish, shrimp, mac and cheese balls, fish and chips and other Southern favorites grace the sides menu.
Address: 132 SW 3rd Ave, Portland, OR 97204
10. Kabba’s Kitchen – a food cart that serves authentic West African food
Cancel your plane trip to Africa and get a taste of the homeland by visiting Humboldt District’s Kabba’s Kitchen.
Try the lamb dibi that includes grilled lamb, grilled onions, and mustard for depth of flavor.
Refresh your taste buds with the made-in-house hibiscus and ginger drink to go with your lamb dibi.
Try their fataya which are meat pies or their nems which are egg rolls. Many customers rave about both of these savory snacks at this African food cart.
Address: 4631 N Albina Ave, Portland, OR 97217
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Beth was born under a wandering star, with drama in her veins and ink in her pen. After stints studying theatre in Dublin and Utrecht she used her creative streak to see as much of the world as she could on as little money. She toured Italian Schools with a children’s theatre troop, lived as an au-pair in both Rome and Washington DC, explored the British countryside, worked her way through much of Europe, Salsa danced in Cuba and road tripped down America’s west coast where she discovered her spiritual home; Portland, Oregon. In between adventures she resides peacefully with her family, cats and ukulele.