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Food recs: The best restaurants in Overland Park, Kansas

Lemongrass Thai Cuisine in Overland Park, Kansas, is family-owned and serves curries, noodles and classic Thai dishes.
Lemongrass Thai Cuisine Facebook
Lemongrass Thai Cuisine in Overland Park, Kansas, is family-owned and serves curries, noodles and classic Thai dishes.

Kansas’ second-largest city is a food-lover’s paradise with some of the best Asian food in the metro, including Chinese dim sum and all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ. There’s no shortage of classic barbecue joints and fine-dining establishments either.

Overland Park boasts one of the most diverse food scenes in Kansas, with a little something for everybody, says Lucie Krisman, a reporter for the Johnson County Post.

“You can obviously find a lot of American and barbecue, but in other little pockets of Overland Park, you can find a lot of Thai, Indian, Korean, or even Ethiopian cuisine,” Krisman told KCUR’s Up To Date on Friday.

Xiao daCunha, a KCUR contributor, recommends a trip to ABC Cafe, known for serving dim sum, a traditional Chinese meal of small, shareable plates eaten for brunch — just be sure to make a reservation or call ahead on the weekend if you have a big group.

“Their menu is in Chinese and English — they’re bilingual — so there shouldn’t be any difficulty for anybody who wants to explore,” she says.

daCunha suggests starting with the Sticky Rice Lotus Leaf and the Xiao Long Bao, a small steamed soup dumpling traditionally prepared in a bamboo steaming basket.

Below, Krisman, daCunha and our listeners share the best places in Overland Park to grab a bite to eat.

Xiao daCunha

  • KC Craft Ramen is known for its delicious broth and ramen made from scratch. It also hosts regular pop-up events where Japanese chefs are flown in to take over the menu for the weekend. Plus, the shop has a massive retail aisle filled with Asian sodas, snacks and anime merchandise.
  • Fox & Hound has delicious food (and plenty of pool tables to go around). The cheesy Guinness Onion Soup and the beer-battered Fish and Chips are must-tries. This is also a great place to watch sports games and hang with your gang.
  • ABC Cafe is the best place in Kansas City for authentic dim sums and homemade Chinese food. Try Xiao Long Bao and the Sticky Rice in Lotus Leaf, as mentioned in KCUR’s Kansas City dim sum guide. The XO Sauce squid is a heavenly entree.
  • Choga Korean Restaurant is a go-to spot for all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ without the fancy upcharges you sometimes see in chain restaurants. Their standard rate of $32.95 includes 12 meat and seafood options. The restaurant also has delicious traditional Korean soups. 
  • SERV, a brand new entertainment district, has music, cocktails and great bites. The space includes six indoor and two outdoor pickleball courts, plus five street food-inspired eatery concepts. Think of it as Overland Park’s Iron District.
  • Tout les Jours, a local bakery, has over 150 items on their menu. All the cakes have an elegant and delicate flavor profile, perfect for afternoon teas or special occasions — especially if you prefer sweets that aren’t over-the-top sugary.
  • K-Street Hot Dogs, on Metcalf Avenue, is an authentic Korean corn dog joint with fun, creative recipes. The Potato Mozzarella Cheese Hot Dog is a must try if you’re craving some guilty pleasure food.

Lucie Krisman

  • Mud Pie Vegan Bakery and Coffee opened in 2011 and is 100% plant-based. They offer daily and seasonal specials, and I especially like their espresso chip muffin and in-house chai. Mud Pie has several gluten-free options, too.  
  • Lemongrass Thai Cuisine is family-owned and serves curries, noodles and other classic Thai dishes. I love their rainbow noodles, which come with a bunch of veggies topped with bean sprouts, cilantro in Panang sauce.
  • The Upper Crust Pie Bakery is for sweet treat lovers like me. My family likes to order pies for holidays and they’re always a hit. Upper Crust cookies are also top notch.

  • The Brass Onion, located in the Prairiefire entertainment district, is a great spot for Southern comfort food. I’m a fan of their brunch, including Mr. B’s Chicken + Waffle with maple butter, chicken gravy and hot-honey glaze.
  • Mr. Gyro’s Greek Food and Pastry has a handful of locations in Johnson County with two in Overland Park. They offer standard Greek American fare, including wraps, salads and plates. The food is fresh, delicious and packed with flavor.
  • J. Gilbert’s Wood-Fired Steaks & Seafood has a fine-dining atmosphere and serves USDA Prime Black Angus beef cooked over an open wood-fire grill. It’s on the fancier side but still has a pretty relaxed atmosphere. The appetizers and sides are not to be missed.

Listener Recommendations

  • Yafa Mediterranean Cuisinee, at 135th Street and Switzer Road, is family-owned and operated by Palestinian immigrants. The chicken shawarma is ridiculous, and the baba ghanouj is divine. 
  • Ricco’s Italian Bistro has a warm, cozy atmosphere and serves hearty plates. The Bleu Cheese Crusted Filet is always cooked to perfection and one listener loves the Chicken Limonata. The white wine lemon sauce is also superb.
  • Red Kitchen KC is the perfect new addition to downtown Overland Park. They serve the best breakfast burritos and authentic Mexican breakfast and lunch. Always fresh, and always made by Alejandra with love.
  • Abol Ethiopian Restaurant, formerly called Elsa’s and now under new ownership, is just as good as ever. One listener reports the thing to get is beef tibs, sauteed with rosemary, garlic, tomatoes, onions and jalapeños. It comes with two sides and injera, a pancake-like flatbread.  
  • Craft Putt is best known for being an indoor mini golf course, but their food is the bomb! The garlic cheese curds are amazing, as are the poutine and smash burger, one listener says. 
  • Strang Hall is a modern food hall with a nice outdoor patio and cocktail bar.  There are six different restaurants you can order from, including cuisines from Southeast Asia, Italy and Mexico.

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As a host and contributor at KCUR, I seek to create a more informed citizenry and richer community. I want to enlighten and inspire our audience by delivering the information they need with accuracy and urgency, clarifying what’s complicated and teasing out the complexities of what seems simple. I work to craft conversations that reveal realities in our midst and model civil discourse in a divided world. Follow me on Twitter @ptsbrian or email me at brian@kcur.org.
Claudia Brancart is an Up To Date producer for KCUR 89.3. She graduated from Pitzer College in Los Angeles where she majored in World Literature and Studio Art. You can reach her at claudiab@kcur.org.
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