The Best Halal Restaurants in Toronto: 2013 Edition

Halal Restaurants

Our 2012 list for the best halal restaurants in Toronto was the most viewed post on our website with thousands of pageviews each month, alhamdulillah, which tells me — this is the kind of information you want to know!

After doing more research, polls, etc., I have revised this list based on what I feel represent the best halal restaurants in Toronto for 2013.

I will be adding some more targeted lists over the next few weeks, which will cover:

  • best NEW halal restaurants,
  • best family halal restaurants,
  • best burger joints
  • and more!

There will be overlap, but I’ve had many requests to segregate into these categories.

** Like our 2012 list for the best halal restaurants, this one is in no particular order — they are all pretty diverse and give you a good scope of places to try out (if you haven’t already!)

You may want us to add places that you feel we may have overlooked. However, we’re only highlighting places that adhere to a full halal menu (with meat being from hand slaughtered sources), do not serve pork and do not serve alcohol. If you have a suggestion that does meet our requirements, please share with us in the comments section below!

Halal authenticity can change at any time, so please remember to always verify prior to eating.

Not in any particular order, here’s what we think are the best halal restaurants for 2013:

1. Affy’s Premium Grill, 2200 Brock Rd, Pickering
It took me a long time to find “my” dish. But I finally did (Cajun Stuffed Chicken with a mango milkshake), and now I can finally agree with everyone on the Affy’s bandwagon that it is a good and “safe” restaurant. They’ve improved leaps and bounds from when they first opened, although we still hear complaints of poor customer service. Either way, you will always see a familiar face and most people agree on this place when deciding on where to eat with a large group. Read our FULL REVIEW here.

2. Bamiyan Kabob, Markham, Toronto and Mississauga
Bamiyan Kabob is one of the best-known Afghan restaurants in the city. Most entrees feature a combination of meat, rice and naan, which sounds meek but just the opposite with their brilliant mix of spices. The white sauce is a must with your meal and so is their dessert, firnee, which is a creamy homemade pudding, spiced with cardamom and topped with pistachios. I prefer the newer Markham location mostly because it’s more spacious however; the Toronto location is more convenient and accessible.

4. Pizza Land, 1801 Lawrence Avenue East, Scarborough
Pizza Land, as the name suggests, is best known for their pizza. But almost everything on their menu is equally as delicious. I usually order a plate of BBQ wings, Shish Taouk or their home burger with fries. When I’m in the mood for fresh and wholesome comfort food I head here. There’s usually something for everyone and the quality is more or less consistent. I give them points for being clean and having ample seating with large tables, which makes it suitable for families. When you’re finished, head next door to Patisserie Royale for dessert!

3. Kara Mia, 7690 Markham Road, Markham
Ask anyone what they think about Kara Mia, and I’ll halal bet you it will always be something positive. I don’t think I’ve ever heard anything negative about their food or service – except that there portion sizes are getting smaller. It might get busy on a weekend, reservations are a must. But in terms of food quality, professionalism and culinary expertise, Kara Mia ranks well. Their Italian inspired menu has morphed over the years to include some homely favourites like burgers and steak. But Chef Abdurrahim’s take rises above expectations. I highly recommend their Peppercorn Steak with Saffron Poutine. Read our FULL REVIEW here.

5. Restoran Malaysia, 815 Major Mackenzie Drive East, Richmond Hill
This spacious Malaysian restaurant tucked away in Toronto’s north features beautiful décor and equally beautiful food. The menu is vast, literally pages and pages of appetizers, soups, rice, noodles and main dishes. I love the various homemade roti canai and prata they offer along with their soothing teh tarik, or pulled tea. This place gets packed on a Friday or Saturday evening, and with no reservation service, be prepared to wait if you arrive later than six in the evening.

6. Sukhothai, 274 Parlaiment St location ONLY   ** THIS LOCATION NOW SERVES ALCOHOL**
When Sukhothai first opened their doors, it was a wonderful and welcome surprise to be able to enjoy authentic Thai food that was halal. They do not serve any pork or alcohol and purchase all of their meat from a local halal butcher. Most of the food is incredible, but my favourite dish is khao soi with chicken. The dining area is very narrow and décor is modest with pictures of the owner’s travels throughout Thailand. Update – the Parlaiment St location has gone through renovations and they’ve opened a 2nd location on Wellington St. which serves halal meat (no pork on their menu either) but do serve alcohol so please make sure you go to the right location! Read our FULL REVIEW here.

7. Pak Centre, 2683 Lawrence Ave East, Scarborough
Pak Centre is on this list because of their ambiance, comfortable seating and cleanliness. In regards to menu and taste, they are comparable to most other reputable halal South Asian restaurant featuring the usual suspects – butter chicken, tandoori chicken, biryani, etc. However, they do offer some distinct dishes like Murgh Mumtaz, which is boneless chicken breast stuffed with cheese, baked and served with cream laced mango curry. I also like the fact that Pak Centre dishes are not soaked in oil and they pay attention to presentation and proper food plating. Read our FULL REVIEW here.

8. Paramount Fine Foods, Richmond Hill, Toronto and Mississauga
Located across from Toronto Eaton Centre, Paramount is an ideal place to grab Lebanese and authentic Middle Eastern food in the heart of the city. It gets very crowded and there might be a delay in placing your order, but the food is worth the wait and several steps up from your typical shawarma joint. Of the various items they offer, I would say their Shawarma and Shish Taouk plates are my favourites along with their refreshing cocktail juice, which is a mixture of mango, strawberry and banana. Some of their items can be bland which makes the meal seem heavy and boring at times, but mixing in their sauces usually helps break up any lull in excitement. They feature a wonderful assortment of baklava – and their pita is a must. Read our FULL REVIEW here.

9. Hakka Garden, 25 Overlea Boulevard, Toronto
This restaurant has reclaimed themselves in my opinion after a few years of being just average, mainly for lack of customer service. However, recently they’ve stepped up their game and have moved to the top of my list for Indian style Chinese food. They are now one of the few Hakka restaurants that have a reputable meat source and do not serve alcohol, pork or a partial halal menu. Their portions are great for the price; three people can eat from a single dish if you order extra rice. I would say most items on the menu are delicious, but I personally like the garlic chicken and crispy beef best. I’ve also heard that their chicken pakora, chilli chicken and spicy green beans are worth a try! Read our FULL REVIEW here.

10. Hamdi, 18 Rexdale Blvd, Toronto
Somalian cuisine has two main influences; South Asian and Italian which make it a unique and very comforting style of cooking. Hamdi is very well-known as the best Somali restaurant in Toronto. Meals come as fragrantly spiced meat and rice or noodle combination. Tall refreshing glasses of juice are constantly being refilled (my favourite is mango) and meals are served with a customary banana. Their intense house hot sauce and complimentary clove spiced tea rounds out the meal. There is a downtown location as well. Hamdi is not in it’s glory years any longer, they have let go a bit on quality and proportions, but still feel that they are a must try if you haven’t been before.

11. Crave Grill House, 25 Woodbine Downs Blvd #5, Toronto ** NEW ADDITION! **
Crave Grill House was featured on our Best NEW restaurants list for 2013 but due to their increased popularity and consistency with great food and wonderful service – we’ve moved them to this list as well. They started with a bang, and they are holding the momentum. Favourites are their ribs and various pasta dishes. This place is a must try if you’re looking for a new halal grill house!

Have any halal restaurants to add? Post in the comments section below!

By: February 9, 2013

81 Comments


  • why did Lahore Tikka fall off the list?


    • Halal Foodie on February 9, 2013

      That’s a great question. When we had it in last years list it was the one place that raised eyebrows. We’re starting a series of “best of Toronto” lists and this one I thought should feature core establishments that have been around for a while and are consistently “good” with more or less of a consensus.


      • Hi there, if I may add to that comment..a restaurant should be defined by not only the food but the atmosphere, prices and the customer service as well. Although LTH (Lahore Tikka House) may serve some spicy dishes, I am not impressed with them at all.

        I recently visited LTH and had a large meal with a few friends. My bill came up to about a hundred odd dollars (a significant amount compared to other pakistani establishments). I was served on plastic disposable plates while sitting on plastic picnic chairs using plastic dollar store utensils in a garage like atmosphere. The lady that was behind the counter was rude when we wanted to clarify the bill while drinking her VOSS water. I think that LTH makes enough money to have real furniture with real cutlery.

        As a big fan of this website and of the reviews posted here, I sincerely urge you to recollect your opinion about LTH. its an open secret that the value of money does not exist, the restaurants atmosphere is very cheap and they need an overhaul. The food on the other hand was excellent (especially the NAANS and the Mango Lassi)


        • Oh I forgot to mention that we were served on folding picnic tables at Lahore Tikka House. Visit Date: March 23rd, 2013. Meal: Lunch


          • Halal Foodie on April 13, 2013

            Thanks for being an avid reader! I had them on the list last year but took them off of 2013’s list. Thanks for leaving your feedback too – I’m sure it helps a lot of people! Hope to hear more about your experiences on the site!


  • This is a great list, and I have been to most of these places and agree their food is excellent. Offhand, I cannot think of anything I would add here, although, it would be nice to see an Indian restaurant on this list (and Pak Centre is very Pakistani in its flavours, so it does not count).

    It is interesting that there are so many new halaal restaurants, offering a huge variety of ambiances and cuisines, but none of them have made their mark yet. Anyway, the halaal restaurant scene in Toronto is only now taking off in a big way, so I expect and hope that in years to come, these lists will be tougher to compile and will feature lots more new restaurants as they step up to the plate (pun intended).

    Great work, Halaal Foodie, keep these lists coming… maybe a series ‘Top 5 Hakka’, ‘Top 5 fast food’ etc. would be a great one.


    • Halal Foodie on February 9, 2013

      Yes I really want to add that one Indian restaurant that everyone (or mostly everyone!) can agree on as being “the best”. But seeing as there are so many out there, it’s hard to really pick that one place out. We will be adding more lists inshaAllah — the next one will be the best NEW halal restaurants. There are so many that I purposely left them off this list – this one is for the veteran restaurants 😉


      • Add YOUR favourite Indian, even if it not the popular opinion.

        Am looking forward to future lists! Love your blog.


        • Halal Foodie on February 9, 2013

          Lol aww thanks! I shamefully don’t have a favorite :/ unless my mom and mother-in-law open something up 😉


  • Tangerine? It’s just amazing.


  • Love Zem-One. 🙂


  • Sukho Thai is the best thai place in toronto and its halal! They have two locations and the one on parliament street is all halal, doesnt serve pork and doesnt serve alcohol!


  • ok just saw its already on the list 🙂


  • You might want to check out Klassic Kitchen in Richmondhill, have tried the food there, excellent halal BBQ menu ( Chicken Mishkaki with masala fries is my fav! ), cozy place with no alcohol being served and pork. East African BBQ cuisine !


  • What about Zauq Restaurant? It is a Pakistani, Indian and Hakka Chinese dine in restaurant. Really good! The ambience is awesome too not like those regular desi dirty places.


  • Where is Silver Spoon – Mississauga


  • You forgot big moes, its by far the best burger joint there is. Also, with popeyes out of the halal lists, only one place makes comparable chicken, not broasters, not krispys, but zestys.


    • Halal Foodie on February 12, 2013

      Yes, Big Moe’s is one of my fav’s but this list is really just for restaurants (with seating, etc). I purposely left out fast food joints and burger places. We have more lists coming up and Big Moe’s will be mentioned on a couple 😉

      Thanks for your feedback! Make sure you come back and comment on the other lists once we post them!


  • I still have Vaughan’s Kara Mia at numbers 1, 2, and 3


  • You should check out Spice Shack at 222 The Esplanade, Toronto. Its fairly new, but offers great variety. In addition to the regular South Asian menu, there is always something new to try from various cultures!


  • What about Patna kabab house? I really loved their bar b q and nihari!


  • College Falafel on Ossington at College St is hands down one of the best Halal restaurants in Toronto!


  • Singapore Gardens best Chinese food in Brampton/Mississauga.


  • Shahin tikka is an amazing south asian restaurant steps away from the science centre best food ever amazing service


  • this is my favourite article


  • Farhan Ahmed Wasim on March 27, 2013

    This is my favorite article!


  • this is my favourite article


  • Great website keep it up with the great work


  • This is my favorite article!


  • This is my favorite article :)))


  • This is my favorite article!


  • This is my FAVOURITE article!!! 🙂


  • This is my favorite article.


  • This post is just what I needed! I never know a new place to suggest during friends/family outing. Love it , thanks so much.


  • This is my favourite article. I want to try Singapore Gardens


  • Wow i love this article!


  • This is my favourite article


  • Nurhan Shire on March 29, 2013

    This is my favourite article! So great to know that I’ve tried a couple of these places already and they’ve made it to the list!


  • this is my favourite article


  • This is not my favourite article.

    Doner Kabob – downtown Toronto on Yonge Street = classic.


  • Sizzling Skillet in Markham is really nice too! Love their paninis and burgers.


  • What about King Palace restaurant at Yonge & Church.. What about Lahore Tikka.. What about Patna? Some of the places cited in the ‘list’ above are a joke.. I wonder what the author is smokin..


  • You guys should try mehzbaan indian restaurant at victoria park and york mills


  • It’s good sad to know T-Bud been removed. In the beginning I had thought that it should not be here as it’s not a restaurant rather a lounge serves crepes/pancakes and tea. Hope another list of other outlets will be created for a larger database.


  • what about NANDO’s in mississauga its all 100% halal with no alcohol or pork 🙂 there’s also ming room and eddie’s wok n roll, however both of these restaurants serve alcohol but no pork.


  • Shahmir durrani on May 4, 2013

    I would like to see hot and sour on the list. Amazing food and environment, plus i have been going there for the past 7-8 years and i always have enjoyed it.

    Another great restaurant is al meezan bbq in etobicoke.(well its not a restaurant but it has the best roasted legs and kabhlee pilaus on earth.)


  • Assalamualaikum

    We are tourists in the city and were just wondering if Hero Certified Burgers are halal. We don’t see them in your list here but their website says their Beef burgers and steaks are certified Halal. Can you help clarify please? Thanks!


    • Halal Foodie on May 6, 2013

      Wa alaykum salaam,

      Hope you’re enjoying your visit to Toronto inshaAllah 🙂 We have basic criteria for reviews and one of them is that they can’t have a partial halal menu which I believe Hero falls under. InshaAllah we hope to be able to provide more in-depth information on these types of places in the future but right now our resources are too limited to be able to answer responsibly.


      • salaaam, i would just like to ask regarding your criteria, with regards to meat, do you refer to only hand slaughter meat, or does this include machine slaughter. JazakAllah, and how do you authenticate that their sources to be halal and that they are giving you correct information. and do you follow a list of meat providers which you consider halal. I am not asking to find faults, i am asking just to understand your criteria, so i can be content with all the restaurants which are mentioned. and i would like to commend you all for your effort keep it up…


        • Halal Foodie on July 26, 2013

          Wa alykum salaam! Great questions, yes any place I/we review on this site is from a hand slaughtered meat source (http://halalfoodie.ca/read-this-first-halal-food/ < this might give you some more information on our position). In regards to authentication, we depend on the restaurants showing us certificates. We are looking at ways to improve this process as we take it very seriously - would love to hear if you have ideas! Right now we put up disclaimers and ask people to investigate themselves to be safe just in case things change with restaurant ownership, etc. (which happens!) Thank you so much - I notice your name from Twitter as well and want to thank you for your support!


  • Ok thank you for thaf anyway. We are enjoying Canada. Have been to Montreal/Quebec/Niagara & now Toronto..was pleasantly surprised with halal availability and also how multi cultural the places are 🙂


  • what about nandoos is it halal?


  • Damas Mediterranean Grill, Scarborough – the best shawarma, mixed grill and a whole tasty variety of middle eastern (arabic) food.

    Nasib’s Shawarma, Scarborough – the best shawarma after Mediterranean, you can get in the GTA.


  • Salaams. Thank you for compiling this list, it is very helpful. Is it possible to also provide their meat sources and whether the owners are Muslims?


    • Halal Foodie on August 9, 2013

      Thanks! If you click “read the full review” meat sources will be listed at the bottom of the review. We try and keep meat info in one place just in case we need to update.


  • You guys should check out Istar Restaurant . Amazing somali food.


  • Randy Steward on August 29, 2013

    Charcoal Kebab House
    正宗维吾尔族餐厅
    3256 Lawrence ave east Toronto, ON M1H 3C2
    Tel: 647-352-4550

    Opening hrs: Mon- Fri: 4pm – 10pm; Sat: 1pm-10pm; Sun: 1pm-9pm

    This Chinese Uyghur restaurant which owned by Uyghur Chinese Muslim and all staffs are Muslim this is a Halal restaurant and they are serious about it
    The foods that you should try there:
    Handmade noodle with stir fried fresh veggies
    Spicy charcoal lamb kebab with cumin
    Spicy chicken with handmade noodle
    Lamb dumpling


  • Is the Amaya Express restaurant in the Food Court at Toronto Eaton Centre halal?.Any independent confirmation.?The Halal Certificate displayed in the restaurant is dated 2011!


  • assalamu alaikom,

    I tried bamiyan kebob and pizza land many times, we need other options for halal food and restaurant’s , I read a review via blogto site about big al’s flying phillys, I went there and tried the grand master crash, this is real phillys ,it was really good,I wish we can add it to the list. i’ll vote for this place.


    • We alykum salaam! Yes! This list is more for restaurants that have had a proven track record. There’s a separate list for NEW halal restaurants! The reason we keep them separate is because sometimes after a few month/years, new restaurants might lose their strengths and not do as well.

      Thanks for your input – Big Al’s is great!


  • Check us out we do only halal, cover the GTA many many events since we started one year ago


  • Afghan Cusine is soooo gooood. They only opened in March, but their food is addictive. https://www.facebook.com/AfghanCuisineRestaurant


  • Thanks for the idea of Spice Shack. Just ordered from there for a client lunch tomorrow, as I needed a halal certified restaurant that delivered and they fit the bill.


  • We used to go Hamdi few years ago. Used to be great food and service. Then we went to Hamdi few week ago and it was a horrible experience. Bland food and bad service. Not gonna there again.


  • Thanks for the great list. Just wondering if anyone has been to Franky tomato (7225 woodbine ave, Markham, ON) they verbally claim that their chicken is halal however we didn’t find any mentioning of it on their website.


    • Halal Foodie on October 22, 2013

      Thanks! I haven’t heard anything about Frankie Tomato – to be honest I wouldn’t recommend taking the chance, too much can go wrong with a partial halal menu and non-experienced (with halal rules) cooks/food handlers.


  • Salams..love the site..has anyone checked out Walima Cafe..authentic moroccan.berber food.


  • Salam Alaikum

    We eat out a LOT. We like establishments with GOOD decor, Bamiyan, Kara Mia, Affys fall off the list. What do you suggest as a GREAT combination of ambiance and food to take visitors from other cities to impress?


  • I personally would not have Pizzaland on this list (not much of a decor, and the food’s good but average). I would have put La Sani Grill (Scarborough) instead.


    • Halal Foodie on March 30, 2014

      We agree Mezba – I think 2014 list will be much different than past years. We’ve really grown in our halal offering!


  • Hassan Ahmad on April 20, 2014

    Hi
    I really like this list but i really think you should check out Royal Jasmine in Mississauga! By far the BEST chinese restaurant in Ontario!


  • Villa Madina !


  • Golden China in Markham … best Hakka chinese in town !!


  • If Affy’s with their low quality meat cuts are the best, then we truly are lost in culinary mediocrity…


  • Try Pizza La Rosa located @ 2555 Victoria Park Ave. Unit # 19, Tel: 416-551-ROSA(7672). This fairly new little place serving 100% Halal Italian Gourmet pizzas, pastas, wraps, wings, salads and daily specials. Everything they served are made from the scratch and delicious. http://www.pizzalarosa.com. Delivery and catering are also available.


  • Istar restaurant needs to be on that list.


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