I am not sure why, but a lot of people do not realize how much amazing food Miami has to offer. Since night clubs and overpriced drinks are common here, I guess fine dining does not come to mind, even though it should! After visiting the area many times, I have found the culinary experiences are always a highlight. Because of this, I have to share my this guide for where to eat in Miami Beach.
I have broken up this post into three sections detailing affordable, moderately priced and splurge restaurants. This post mainly focuses on Miami Beach because it would take forever to go through all the awesome restaurants in the greater Miami area! Everything included below is easy to get to from any hotel in South Beach. Read on to find out the 30 best places to eat in Miami Beach for a delicious vacation!
Where to Eat in Miami Beach for an Affordable Meal
Even though it is known as a luxurious place, there are plenty of places where you can eat in Miami affordably! We are always on the hunt for new and different cheap eats spot when we visit so we can keep our travel costs down. Here are ten places we have enjoyed for a cheap Miami meal.
This first recommendation actually exists all throughout the Miami area. Panther Coffee is extremely well known and beloved and I definitely recommend coffee lovers checking it out. Obviously the roasted coffee is the highlight, but they also have some tasty baked goods for breakfast or a snack to go with it.
Las Olas Cafe
If you want to try an authentic Latin American breakfast or lunch, then Las Olas Cafe is the spot to visit. This counter service restaurant will whip you up a Cuban sandwich or some empanadas in a matter of minutes. Every day, a different special is available with options like Pescado Asado or Vaca Frita. It’s the perfect place to get a taste of Miami Beach!
For those who like carbs, Andrix Cafe is a great stop. This Italian style eatery has an assortment of meat and cheese breakfast sandwiches in the morning and pizza for lunch and dinner. We came for breakfast and were enamored with the fresh baked bread here. I hear the pizza and especially the crust are even better and definitely worth coming here later in the day.
Probably the most famous place to eat in Miami Beach is La Sandwicherie a cozy French sandwich spot that has been open since 1988. Right on Collins Avenue, this cafe has been a favorite for sandwiches among locals and tourists alike. The bread is always fresh and you can get a variety of options from the Turkey and Brie to the Seafood Salad sandwich. There’s a small bar to eat at, but most people get theirs to go and bring it to the beach!
Sometimes after a day at the beach, pizza is the best meal and Pizza Rustica is where to eat it in Miami Beach. It has been around for 20 years and is always popular for a late night slice. It’s open until 6 AM so for just $7, you can get a huge slice of pizza whenever the craving strikes! Their New York Steak pizza is a hit, but they have all the other toppings you can imagine, and some wings and paninis too.
For a quick and fresh meal in Miami Beach, Miami Mediterranean is my recommendation. This spot has the best gyros, falafel and tabouli in the area. They also offer Greek food you can’t find anywhere else like Sauced Eggplant and Adana Kebab. The salads are very tasty as well and a nice lighter choice for bikini season!
There is not a ton of Mexican food in Miami Beach, as Cuban cuisine is the main culinary influence here. However, Taquiza, a classic outdoor taquiera, is one of the main stand outs. They serve tacos on freshly made blue corn tortillas and other street fare. Everything we have tasted from here has been brimming with spices and we love trying all sorts of different tacos. For only $3.50 per taco, it is definitely a place you want to visit!
Under the Mango Tree
One thing I was searching for in Miami Beach was where to eat acai bowls! I found that Under The Mango Tree is the restaurant to go to with it’s homey spot on 5th Street. Here you can get Acai Bowls for $12 or less, in addition to smoothies, juices and sandwiches. It’s the most refreshing breakfast you can have on a hot day and this spot has so many unique toppings for the bowls as well!
For a European style meal, Panizza Bistro brings an international touch to Miami Beach. This restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and has a large and enticing menu. In the morning you can get a classic egg meal, and later in the day, tapas are the highlight. For an especially cheap bite, come during Happy Hour for beer, wine and sangria less than $5 and $3 appetizers. Make sure you try the Honey and Goat Cheese Stuffed Croquetas, as they are unlike any others I have had!
Seafood is another thing you will find at many Miami restaurants, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. My Ceviche is our favorite hidden gem we found on our last trip. This counter service eatery offers ceviche and poke bowl for just $10! You can the fish prepared in all sorts of styles and even have it burrito or taco style as well. It is a super refreshing and flavorful meal for after the beach!
Where to Eat in Miami Beach for a Moderately Priced Meal
Usually the moderately priced section is the easiest to put together in my dining guides, but for Miami Beach, it was a bit challenging! Things tend to be either cheap or very expensive here! I did manage to find these 10 restaurants where you can get a meal around $30 and under though. Keep in mind, some of these restaurants have some pretty expensive options, including drinks, but more than half of the menu is in this price range. If you really want to save, go during happy hours, which is usually between 4 PM and 7 PM in Miami Beach!
It is worth it to venture to Little Havana for some Cuban cuisine, but if you are in Miami Beach, Havana 1957 is an authentic Cuban spot to stop at. They have all the classics like Empanadas de Tasajo, Ropa Vieja and Pan Con Lechon. There are a few locations throughout the area, but I prefer the one on Lincoln Road with a patio surrounded by Art Deco style buildings.
Hands down the best place to sushi in Miami Beach is Pubbelly. They have about 15 different types of sushi rolls, each made to perfection. You can’t find rolls like these anywhere else, including the Arana made with soft shell crab, serrano, avocado and tomatillo or the Sake Aburi with Kanikama, salmon, yuzu, miso and truffle oil. They also offer small plates to share, but you cannot miss the incredible sushi here!
Bodega Taqueria y Tequila
For Mexican Street Food with a twist, Bodega Taqueria y Tequila is one of the best options around. They are even open until five in the morning for anyone needing a late-night taco fix! They also offer burritos, bowls and appetizers for whatever Mexican food you desire and refreshing margaritas to compliment it. To save a few dollars, go between 6 PM and 8 PM for $2 tacos and $7 drinks for Happy Hour!
On Ocean 7 Café
If you want a beachy spot to visit, On Ocean 7 Café is my pick. This is the casual type of place you can visit for breakfast, lunch or dinner and its street view lends itself to people watching. They have pretty much everything here from burgers, to seafood to salads. I would definitely stick to more the casual food here or breakfast, because if you want to splurge, there are better places to do it. Regardless, On Ocean 7 Café is a very Miami dining experience.
The last time I was in Miami Beach, we ended up at Lucali after spending all the day in the sun by the pool. We had to wait a little to get a seat, but it ended up being the most satisfying meal and just the boost I needed for the night! It’s a simple menu with only 6 toppings available for your pizza and a few salads, but that is all you need! They have perfected the crust and the sauce at Lucali and anyone who likes pizza will love this cozy spot.
Sweet Liberty is all the good parts and none of the bad parts of a dive bar. They are an excellent spot for drinks, but they also make really good food. Brunch is the most popular dining choice here, but during the rest of the day you can find unique eats like a Churrasco Bahn-mi or a Maine Lobster Hot Pocket. Sweet Liberty has food to please foodies and pick eaters and some fun cocktails for everyone. It’s also another great happy hour spot if you come between 4 PM and 7 PM!
Lolo’s Surf Cantina
For some of the coolest vibes in the neighborhood, you have to check Lolo’s Surf Cantina. I adore their outdoor patio, especially at night with all of the string lights. The food is equally tantalizing with Oaxacan tacos, tostados and braised meats. If you do not sleep in, the breakfast menu is just as delicious and you can get probably the best huevos rancheros in Miami Beach here. There are even some vegan options making Lolo’s a favorite for all.
Macchialina Taverna Rustica
Italian food can get very expensive to eat in Miami Beach, but Macchialina’s is one place to get your pasta fix for less than $30 per person. They have staples like Lasagna, Caccio e Pepe and Spaghetti, that are of course handmade pasta. However, you can even get Branzino and Veal here if you are cutting down on carbs. Between the food, the vast wine list and the atmosphere, Macchialina’s is a romantic hit.
You may not have expected to find Indian food in Miami Beach, but Akash has you covered. They have all the tandoori, curry and naan you need and so much more. People rave about the Tikka Masala and the Mango Curry, which make for a flavorful meal under $20. The indoor and outdoor dining room is pretty elegant as well. Here, you will experience all the glamour of Miami Beach for an affordable price!
One place we always recommend where to eat in Miami Beach is the 27 Restaurant. It’s located in the Freehand Hotel, and we love it so much, we came here for New Year’s Eve! The restaurant and bar are very hipster, but not in an over done way and the atmosphere is like you are dining in someone’s house. The cocktails are the best I have had with fresh juice and interesting bitters and they all cost $14, which is a steal for this area. As for the menu, it’s always changing, but you can expect to find a mix of foodie creations like Kimchi Fried Rice or Octopus Paella and a lineup of exceptional small plates. Whether you come here for the drinks or the food, I think you will be equally charmed by this poolside hostel restaurant and bar!
Miami Restaurants to Splurge At
The last ten restaurants on this list are some of the world’s finest dining and of course, that comes at a high price. I would not blame you if you skip these restaurants on your trip, but I do think it’s worth it if you can afford to splurge. Expect to spend at least $50 per person, and usually much more than that. Most of these places serve dishes that you can only find in a luxurious place like Miami Beach, so be sure to appreciate the spectacular experience dining at these!
For a trendy, California style meal in Miami Beach, Upland Miami is all the rage. The décor fuses coastal and rustic style to create an intimate dining room made from the finest materials. As for the food you will be treated to specialties like Coal Roasted Salmon with pickled beets and farro or Lobster with cast iron rice and tomato. There are actually some pasta and pizza dishes on the menu that would make for a more affordable meal with all the flavor of their distinct cooking techniques, but make sure you get a few small plates as well to experience this spot to the fullest.
Inside the Lowes Hotel, the Lure Fishbar is constantly ranked highly for its impressive seafood selection. The style is nautical glam with indoor and outdoor seating made for a meal of fresh fish. You cannot miss the raw bar with a selection of oysters, nigiri & sashimi and more delightful shellfish options. However, the full menu includes tantalizing options as well like Chilean Seabass and Nori Crusted Tuna. There are steak and chicken options for landlubbers (barely anything for vegetarians), but I think this restaurant is best for those who enjoy fish and sushi.
Pizza and Burger
You may not have expected to find pizzas and burgers on this portion of this list, but given the entrees from Pizza and Burger are in the high twenty-dollar range, I found it appropriate. This Fontainebleau hotel spot is known to have the best burgers in all of Miami Beach, and with options like the Dry-Aged Steak Burger and the Blue Cheese, Truffle Aioli and Prosciutto Topped Burger, I can see why. These go amazingly with boozed up milk shakes and the crispy onion rings. The pizza sounds pretty fantastic too, but I think this is the spot to splurge on a burger like no other.
Planta South Beach
A lot of these expensive restaurants are mainly meat or seafood meals, but for an elegant plant-based meal, Planta South Beach is the spot. This entirely vegan restaurant offers unbelievable veggie dishes including sushi, cheesy pasta and croquetas. The restaurant itself is beautiful and garden like and basically everything about this place is a nature lovers paradise. Because of the lack of meat, this is also on the cheaper side of this portion of the list, yet still the same quality. I urge those who do and don’t eat meat to check out Planta for an unforgettable experience.
Bird and Bone
On the other side of the spectrum of Planta, we have Bird & Bone, where upscale Southern Comfort cuisine is served. The highlight is the Nashville fried chicken named the best in Miami Beach, that was also probably the best I have had. The food is so comforting yet also elevated in a way that surprises the senses. Other favorites include the Cornmeal Crusted Snapper, the Blackberry BBQ Pork Shank, and of course you have to get sides like Pimento Mac and Cheese, Sea Island Poblano Grits, and Hot Collard Greens to go with your meal! Dining here is also an excuse to check out The Confidante, my favorite hotel in the city!
Probably the most gorgeous restaurant on this list is Byblos inside the Royal Palm hotel. It serves Eastern Mediterranean food in a bright, airy space with colorful and authentic art. Sharing is encouraged, and there are plenty of excellent choices to pass from Sabzi Sauce Chargrilled Chicken to Truffle Tzatziki Short Rib Kebabs. Even the side dishes are extremely flavorful with the likes of honey sunchokes, tahini cauliflower and garlic fontina mushrooms. Byblos prides themselves on serving intimate and genuine meals for couples or families.
Smith & Wollensky
If you were looking for the Mad Men experience in Miami, then you will want to get a steak at Smith & Wollensky. This is a classic steakhouse with a beautiful view of South Pointe Park and all the luxurious cuts of meat you can imagine. Most of the cuts are dry-aged, although there are a few unexpected options like the gorgonzola bacon crusted filet. You definitely want to come here for steak, but surf and turf is an option as well, and it is definitely a fitting place to splurge for a side lobster tail. There are a dozen or so interesting starters, salads and sides, but tread lightly so you can fully enjoy 16+ ounces of the best steak in Miami Beach.
One of the most glamorous Miami Beach restaurants you can find is Matador Room at the Miami Beach EDITION. This renowned spot is a mix of Spanish and Latin American cuisine with the 1950’s Miami style. You can dine either in the sunken oval dining room or on the botanical terrace. For your meal you can find Spanish staples like Iberico Jamon and Arroz Con Pollo, in addition to specials only here like the Red Chili Butter Toasted Sesame Beef Tenderloin or the Mezcal Chipotle Cured Salmon. Dining here is truly an experience inside and out!
Cecconi’s is the nicest restaurant I have been to Miami Beach and I was instantly obsessed with the atmosphere. It’s a Venetian style restaurant, that is mainly outside around beautifully lit trees. This is where I had the best beef tartare and best Buffalo Mozzarella yet! For entrees pasta and seafood are the highlights and I can guarantee you won’t regret going with a tasty bowl of gnocci. The cocktail and wine list are equally impressive and I still dream of going back to this restaurant. Unfortunately, I still want to go to many others on this list too, and there is only so much time, money and calories!
Joe’s Stone Crab
Of all the restaurants to eat in Miami Beach on this list Joe’s Stone Crab is definitely the most iconic. I am dying to go here and have not yet because they usually have a very long wait and do not take reservations. I hear it is worth it for the stone crabs alone! It’s been around since 1913 and has stood the test of time. When I make it here, I will definitely order the crabs, but people also rave about the crab cakes and the key lime pie. If you want to quintessential Miami Beach experience, a meal at Joe’s Stone Crab is the way to get it!
Know Before You Go: Where to Eat in Miami Beach
Sure, you can leave South Beach for a meal, but between these 30 different options, you will not have to! I tried to include every kind of cuisine and experience possible in Miami Beach on this list, so you can try whatever you want on your Florida vacation. Dining in this area is pretty different from anywhere else, so here are some things to keep in mind.
- Tipping at least 20% is customary in Miami Beach and is often included in the final check at the finer establishments.
- I have found meals to go very quickly here, as there are so many people wanting a table, but the affordable restaurants section is probably where you can get the fastest dining experience for those in a rush.
- A lot of restaurants do not take reservations, so there is often a wait. A few here take them on Open Table, so be sure to check beforehand.
- The party doesn’t start in Miami Beach until late at night, so people eat dinner at 9 PM or later. If you prefer eating earlier, you can usually avoid waits and get happy hour deals!
- Drinks can be very expensive in Miami Beach and it is hard to even find a cocktail under $15 at most places. Happy Hour is the only way to save on drinks!
- Dress codes vary, but for the upscale restaurants on the list, I would err on the dress-to-impress side.
- A lot of restaurants do valet or do not have parking. The ideal way to experience Miami Beach is by staying at a hotel and walking or taking a Lyft/Uber around town!
- Don’t come to Miami unprepared! Check out my Miami Packing List and find out the essentials I recommend for a Miami vacation.
I hope this restaurant guide has your taste buds salivating for a trip to Miami Beach. I know mine are after writing this! For more Miami travel tips, check out my Miami Travel Guide and my list of Things To Do in Miami Beach.
If you prefer a downloadable guide, check out my Etsy shop for my Miami Bucket List.