Chapel Hill might be famous as the home of the University of North Carolina and its scenic landscape. But this doesn’t mean that its culinary scene is not worth exploring. If you’re in town and suddenly craving for some finger-licking good Asian food, you’re in luck. Chapel Hill has an abundance of Asian restaurants that can satiate your hunger. Here you’ll find a good selection of the different kinds of Asian food available: Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, and many more. You’ll have trouble picking just one. So, if you’re in the mood for a delicious Asian dish, check out these top Asian restaurants in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Don’t be deceived by its modest storefront, this casual dining restaurant has more food options than one can possibly try in a single visit. The must-try dishes from Jujube’s menu include dumplings, short rib wontons, seared scallops, pan-fried chicken, and shrimp and corn spring rolls. All of these are rich in flavor and served generously. For appetizers, pamper your taste buds with their chicken cobb salad. Apart from the delicious items on their menu, the restaurant has a comprehensive wine selection being sold at reasonable prices. Jujube truly offers quality and quantity at the same time.
Address: 1201 Raleigh Rd, Suite L, Glen Lennox Shopping Center, Chapel Hill, NC 27517
Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11:30am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 9pm; Fri: 11:30am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 9:30pm; Sat: 5pm - 9:30pm (closed on Sun)
2. Spicy 9 Sushi Bar & Asian Restaurant
Are you craving for delicious sushi that is budget-friendly? Spicy 9 Sushi Bar & Asian Restaurant lets you enjoy a wide selection of sushi options without worrying about the bill, thanks to their ‘Buy One, Get One’ offer. A must-try is the “Always Roll My Maybe”, a sushi roll with eel, tempura, kimchi sauce, and masago for 16 USD. It may be a bit pricey compared to their other sushi options, but it is worth every cent. If you’re not a fan of raw fish, there are still plenty of other Southeast Asian dishes that you can choose. You can go with the Korean beef bulgogi, which is a rib-eye steak dish that comes with a sweet and savory sauce at 14.95 USD. This restaurant is the perfect choice for Asian food and sushi lovers.
Spicy 9 Sushi Bar & Asian Restaurant
Address: 140 W Franklin St #150, Chapel Hill, NC 27516,
Website: Spicy 9 Sushi Bar & Asian Restaurant
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 11am - 11pm; Sun: 12pm - 10pm
3. Lime & Basil
Lime & Basil has been consistent in serving delicious authentic Vietnamese food, which is why their customers love to return. You can start your meal by ordering their papaya salad or the Saigon wings–both are equally delicious yet manages to leave plenty of room for the main course. And if you’re eating in a Vietnamese restaurant, it is only natural that you order their famous pho, an aromatic, healthy, and fulfilling soup. To quench your thirst, you can gulp down their refreshing bubble tea that has the right consistency–creamy but not too thick. Lastly, this restaurant has a cozy atmosphere with plenty of vegetarian-friendly options on their menu. It is absolutely pho-nomenal.
Lime & Basil
Address: 200 W. Franklin St, Chapel Hill, NC 27516
Website: Lime & Basil
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 11:30am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 9:30pm; Sat: 5pm - 9:30pm (closed on Sun)
4. Lucha Tigre
Although it’s not purely Asian food, Lucha Tigre makes the cut with its selection of Mexican and Asian Fusion food. A must-try is their tiger shrimp ceviche, an appetizer of shrimps drizzled in a citrus sauce mixed with spices, cilantro, and avocado. You can also try their chips and salsa, a fine twist to the Mexican dish served with crispy wonton skins. Another must-try is the seared salmon fillet. The fresh salmon is coated with a sweet chipotle sauce served with butternut squash and asparagus on the side. If the description of the food is already this good, imagine how great it tastes. And lastly, for dessert, don’t forget to order their banana Nutella empanada and pair it with any of the cocktail drinks they offer from their bar. A recommendation is their passion fruit margarita.
Address: 746 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Chapel Hill, NC 27514, United States
Website: Lucha Tigre
Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11:30am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 10pm; Fri: 11:30am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 11pm; Sat: 12pm - 11pm; Sun: 11am - 10pm
Lantern is a restaurant that will convert you into an Asian food fan, thanks to their tasty selection. This restaurant, adorned with simple yet modern interiors, only uses locally sourced ingredients to cook their dishes. All of the items on the menu are tasty but the best-sellers include the salt and pepper prawns, Japanese steakhouse-style steak, and the bento box. Lantern has won numerous prestigious culinary titles awarded by renowned food publications, like Food and Wine and Gourmet Magazine.
Address: 423 W Franklin St, Chapel Hill, NC 27516, United States
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 5:30pm - 10pm (closed on Sun)
6. Hunam Chinese Restaurant
It’s no surprise that Hunam Chinese Restaurant is a favorite among Asian food lovers in Chapel Hill. Here, you can find pretty much every single Chinese dish you can think of. Some of their specialties include Peking duck, three-way steamed whole fish, and Szechuan pork. The restaurant also provides various seating choices for different occasions, including the classic Chinese round table seating with a lazy Susan on top. In short, if you’re on the hunt for authentic and tasty Chinese food, Hunam Chinese Restaurant is the place to go.
Hunam Chinese Restaurant
Address: 790 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Website: Hunam Chinese Restaurant
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 11am - 2:30pm, 4:30pm - 9:30pm; Sat - Sun: 11:30am - 9:30pm
7. Elements Restaurant
Elements Restaurant offers haute cuisine in a modern contemporary dining setting. Have a taste of their specialty dishes, such as the miso sea bass, the beet salad, or the Saigon noodles with sliced flank steak. They also have vegetarian-friendly dishes, like the vegetable sushi rolls, which is made from fresh and locally sourced vegetables. Their seafood dishes, such as the walnut prawns, are also top-notch. If you want to try their seafood dish, the best time to go is from Thursdays to Saturdays, that’s the time when the fish is freshest. For dessert, go for their Belgian chocolate mousse with warm chocolate that will melt in your mouth and taste heavenly.
Address: 2110 Environ Way, Chapel Hill, NC 27517,
Website: Elements Restaurant
Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 9pm; Fri: 11am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 10pm; Sat: 5pm - 10pm (closed on Sun)
8. Thai Palace Restaurant
Hands down, the place to go for the best pad thai in Chapel Hill is Thai Palace Restaurant. You can expect nothing less than freshly prepared food and excellent service from the staff on your every visit. If you feel like eating something other than pad thai, you can try their curry noodle soup; a delectable red curry with delicious broth, a generous amount of noodles, fried tofu, and chicken meat slices. The dish costs less than 10 USD. All of the main courses come with a serving of salad on the side. The restaurant’s pleasant and cozy environment will amp up your whole dining experience. It’s definitely a place that you will love to come back to.
Thai Palace Restaurant
Address: 1206 Raleigh Rd, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 9:30pm; Fri - Sat: 11am - 2:30pm, 5pm - 10pm; Sun: 5pm - 9:30pm
9. Ms. Mong
The reason why Ms. Mong never runs out of customers even though there are other options is because of their generous serving. So how do you order from this place? First, you have to pick the size of your bowl. After that, you have to choose the type of stir-fry food and ingredients you want to put in your bowl from their menu. You’ll need to pay for your meal and the chef will prepare your order. This dining concept is great particularly for people with special dietary needs or restrictions. Other than the custom-made stir-fry bowl, you should also try their Cali Sunset Banh Mi, a Vietnamese baguette sandwich with pork belly slices in a savory drizzle.
Address: 163 E Franklin St, Chapel Hill, NC 27514, United States
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 11am - 9pm; Sat: 12pm - 9pm (closed on Sun)
OiShii is a Japanese restaurant that lives up to its name, which translates to “delicious” in English. Some of the items you must order from their menu include the nigiri sushi, wicked salmon roll, miso, and pork katsu curry. The best way to finish off your meals is to have a plate of their tempura cheesecake which is a cheesecake coated with breading and deep-fried so that it becomes crunchy on the outside, gooey on the inside. It is highly addictive. Lastly, the staff of the restaurant is highly attentive to the needs of the customers.
Address: 1129 Weaver Dairy Rd Ste M, Chapel Hill, NC 27514-1960
Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11:30am - 2pm, 5:30pm - 9:30pm; Fri: 11:30am - 2pm, 5:30pm - 10pm; Sat: 5pm - 10pm; Sun: 5pm - 9:30pm
Explore Asian cuisine in North Carolina
While there may be plenty of cities in the US with endless food options, North Carolina is at the top of the list as a foodie’s paradise. The abundance of choices is proof that there’s more to North Carolina cuisine than just its barbecue. Let us know which of these Asian restaurants in Chapel Hill is your favorite or if your favorites aren’t on the list.
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