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Pasture sandwich.
Pasture

Where to Find a Marvelous Mid-Week Lunch in Portland

Where to grab a pile of Chinese food, a comforting bowl of khao soi, a quick slice, and more

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Pasture sandwich.
| Pasture

When looking at Portland’s dining scene as a whole, it’s actually a city that really nails its lunch game. We’re a city known for our food carts, our sandwiches, our pizza. When people visit, they seek out places like Nong’s Khao Man Gai and Lardo. And some of the big-deal spots in town offer lunch service, like Eem or Oma’s Hideaway. While pandemic lockdowns, a drop in tourism, and growing interest in work-from-home slowed down the midday lunch crowd, daily lunch service is back around the city, whether you’re seeking a quick grab-and-go sandwich or a leisurely meal complete with ice tea (or cocktails).

For this map, we’ve compiled a wide range of restaurants and food carts that are open and serving lunch in the middle of the week. The spots on this map are open for at least four days each week, and offer some sort of onsite dining — that includes food cart pods with covered picnic tables, as well as restaurants with full-on indoor table service. For more lunch options, check out our sandwich map.

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Eater maps are curated by editors and aim to reflect a diversity of neighborhoods, cuisines, and prices. Learn more about our editorial process.

Phuket Cafe

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This Northwest Portland Thai restaurant from Akkapong Earl Ninsom is often buzzing with excited energy in the evening, when diners gather at the chef’s counter for Langbaan’s tasting menu or order rib-eyes and pork chops on the main menu. Lunch is a much more relaxed affair: Sitting out in the heated, pink train car outside or at one of the indoor tables, diners order standards like pad see ew, massaman curry, and pork belly fried rice, perhaps alongside a glass of Thai iced tea — spiked as a clarified milk punch, if the day is ending early. The restaurant also offers takeout curries and noodles for lunch.

Scottie's Pizza Parlor NW

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The char-spotted pies from this long-beloved pizzeria are available whole or by the slice at the Northwest Portland location, polka-dotted with pepperoni or slathered in vodka sauce. Scottie’s is perhaps best known for its #1, basically a margherita with a combination of fresh and aged mozzarella. Outside of pizza, the restaurant serves things like Caesar salads, cannoli, and garlic knots.

Taylor Street Kitchen

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Chef Althea Grey Potter — formerly of Oui Wine Bar — has taken over the kitchen at this charming downtown Portland deli, market, and luncheonette, and it shows. Those familiar with her work know she loves bold and unending layers of flavor, which appears here in dishes like roasted delicata squash salad, tossed in harissa vinaigrette with sunflower seed dukkah, goat cheese, and pomegranate seeds. Other salads from the case range from potato salad with sheep’s milk feta to red quinoa and carrots with dijon-citrus vinaigrette; they’re best paired with the roast chicken served as a part of Taylor Street’s lunch plate. Otherwise, the cacio e pepe chicken salad, bolstered with sundried tomato pesto, is a standout.

Tasty Corner Chinese Restaurant

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This downtown Chinese restaurant is creating a buzz online for its tingly mapo tofu, Chongqing chicken, and hand-shaven noodles. All of the above are available for lunch at a reduced price, plus Chinese American standards like General Tso’s chicken and Mongolian beef. Additionally, Tasty Corner offers a variety of lunch specials, with a cup of hot-and-sour or egg-flower soup and rice included.

Love Belizean

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The Belizean chicken at this downtown spot is a favorite among Portland State University students, who stop in for plates of saucy chicken thighs, coconut rice, and the restaurant’s unforgettable habanero sauce. On rainy afternoons, it’s best to add on a bowl of coconut curry soup. Vegans can stick around for coconut curry stewed red beans.

Murata Restaurant

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For decades, downtown workers have popped into this old-school Japanese restaurant for combination lunches of broiled salmon, tonkatsu, or sashimi, complete with sunomono, steamed rice, and miso soup. On cold days, Murata’s tempura-topped udon is straight-up comfort food. For a business lunch, reserve one of the restaurant’s tatami rooms for both privacy and comfort.

Prost Marketplace

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The Prost Marketplace pod, next to the North Portland German beer bar, is home to a number of carts consistently serving lunch. Desi’s bowls of yellow-hued basmati rice, topped with tandoori tempeh or cardamom-chai chicken or masala pulled pork, deliver for a multifaceted mid-week meal. Matt’s BBQ easily makes some of the city’s best brisket, available a la carte by the half-pound or chopped in a sandwich with pickles and slaw. And for those who would rather repeat breakfast than move on to lunch fare, Fried Egg I’m in Love is open daily with pesto-slathered egg sandwiches. Prost Marketplace is home to ample covered and heated seating within the pod.

Mamma Khouri's

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This North Williams restaurant, which the owners describe as “Middle Eastern,” offers a number of strong lunch options, from meze platters to share with coworkers to pita-wrapped sandwiches stuffed with juicy lamb shawarma or falafel. Mamma Khouri’s also offers things like Turkish coffee to perk up mid-work day, as well as hard-to-find Lebanese and Syrian smoothies for an on-the-go treat.

Obon Shokudo

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Vegans love this Southeast Grand spot for its supremely comforting, homey Japanese food, ranging from earthy miso stew to onigiri stuffed with misozuke. Those who prefer a lighter lunch will appreciate Obon’s wide range of onigiri, an easy grab-and-go option; those looking to linger should start with some crispy kabocha korokke, followed by a bowl of the restaurant’s lovely, handmade udon noodles.

Nong's Khao Man Gai

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It simply wouldn’t feel right to omit Nong’s from this map, a standby for comforting mid-week lunches of impeccably cooked rice, tender chicken, and that citrusy ginger sauce. To switch things up, get the pork rice or peanut sauce chicken instead of the restaurant’s famous khao man gai. Nong’s is also one of the few restaurants on this map to feature a kid’s menu.

Pasture PDX

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A butcher’s shop and market in Northeast Portland, Pasture is open Tuesdays through Fridays for roast beef sandwiches with clothbound cheddar, house pastrami Reubens with carrot thousand island, and beef mortadella with pickled peppers. Those grabbing a quick lunch before heading home can grab Oregon-raised meats from the butcher case for dinner.

Mirisata

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When stopping by this worker-owned, vegan Sri Lankan restaurant, start with a short eats sampler, a snack-y tray of rolls stuffed with Impossible beef and potato curry, split pigeon pea fritters, and jackfruit curry croquettes, among others. From there, options are endless, depending on the vibe. For a quick lunch break meal, the restaurant’s rotating selection of stuffed roti — filled with everything from cashew cheese to spiced vegetables — is smart, easy to eat while walking down Belmont; for those sticking around, the rotating rice and curry plate is the move, a colorful array of sambals, curries, and “deviled” (read: spicy) vegetables and proteins. Keep an eye out for specials on Instagram.

Rukdiew Cafe

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This Southeast Belmont Thai restaurant is a cheery spot for a mid-week lunch, with plush, rose-pink bar stools and robin’s egg blue booths. The food matches the decor — dishes here are colorful and bright, crunchy salad rolls followed by a lime-laden larb. Rukdiew also serves some of the finest khao soi in the city, with a brick-red slick of chile oil floating above a nuanced broth teeming with cinnamon and coriander. It’s best paired with a Cherry Blossom, a nonalcoholic cocktail made with pomegranate juice and lychee.

The lunch special at this East 28th Thai restaurant is a popular option for those working around Laurelhurst or Kerns on a weekday: Diners choose from a variety of main protein options, which come with a side of soup; a soft boiled egg; a carb like sticky rice, jasmine rice, or noodles; and papaya salad. The list includes favorites from the main dinner menu like the crispy chicken dish gai grop sam yan or the sweet and saucy eggplant dish pad makhua.

Bluto's

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This Greek spot from the man behind Lardo serves skewers of juicy lamb souvlaki alongside silky hummus and bright tzatziki, with sheets of fresh-baked pita for swiping and stuffing. Around lunchtime, the restaurant’s salads are a smart choice, hearty and filled with things like whipped sheep’s cheese or beets and tahini. Add some souvlaki for protein, and a swirl of soft serve to get through the rest of the day.

Oma's Hideaway

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This ultra-cool Southeast Division restaurant serves lunch every day, with things like char siu-topped breakfast sandwiches, vegan roti wraps with green pea and mint fritters, and a filet-o-fishball sandwich with Sichuan peppercorn tartar sauce. Hits from the restaurant’s dinner menu are also available here, including the knockout roti with curry for dipping and the char siu pork belly rice bowl.

Viking Soul Food - Woodstock

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This tiny Scandinavian restaurant in Woodstock, the companion to the long-standing Belmont food cart, stuffs lefse — basically Nordic crepes — with Norwegian meatballs and gravy, smoked steelhead with pickled shallots, and ligonberry jam and cream cheese, served alongside snacks like pickled herring, pickled eggs, and Scandinavian rye bread. The lefse wraps make for a great lunch on the go, though dining there means you can linger for a skyr-cardamom panna cotta or ligonberry thumbprint cookie.

Rose VL Deli

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This cheery Vietnamese soup spot on Powell is easily worth the hype, with rotating bowls every day but Sunday and Wednesday. Any given visit might involve buoyant pork meatballs floating in a pristine broth, or bowls filled with wontons and char siu pork. It’s hard to go wrong, and each visit can involve thick, stuffed salad rolls and Vietnamese iced coffee.

Cameo Cafe East

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This cottagecore-adjacent Roseway diner serves a nice balance of Korean and American standbys during lunch: Some tables may be covered in BLTs, burgers, and Monte Cristos, while others may support bowls of mandu soup, bulgogi, and bindae-tteok. It’s best to order from both categories, particularly where they intersect: breakfast plates with kimchi, bulgogi burger specials.

Fortune BBQ Noodle House

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The best time to arrive at this Montavilla Cantonese barbecue spot is right when it opens: Juicy, sienna-hued roast ducks hang from hooks in the case, lined up alongside full racks of roast pork and char siu. Many who visit Fortune BBQ stop in for noodle soups, loaded with an array of meats and shrimp-stuffed wontons; however, it’s hard to beat a simple plate of roast meats, piled next to a tangle of noodles or a mound of rice.

This Deaf-owned Lents spot is one of the very few Portland restaurants that actively accommodates Deaf diners, taking orders in American Sign Language; the team also uses speech-to-text software for hearing diners. Pah! is also a strong spot for a burger — not caught up in the super-thin smash burger trend, these are thick, juicy burgers, particularly the Champ, a barbecue-bacon cheeseburger. Those up for a challenge can start with the restaurant’s take on a blooming onion.

Phuket Cafe

This Northwest Portland Thai restaurant from Akkapong Earl Ninsom is often buzzing with excited energy in the evening, when diners gather at the chef’s counter for Langbaan’s tasting menu or order rib-eyes and pork chops on the main menu. Lunch is a much more relaxed affair: Sitting out in the heated, pink train car outside or at one of the indoor tables, diners order standards like pad see ew, massaman curry, and pork belly fried rice, perhaps alongside a glass of Thai iced tea — spiked as a clarified milk punch, if the day is ending early. The restaurant also offers takeout curries and noodles for lunch.

Scottie's Pizza Parlor NW

The char-spotted pies from this long-beloved pizzeria are available whole or by the slice at the Northwest Portland location, polka-dotted with pepperoni or slathered in vodka sauce. Scottie’s is perhaps best known for its #1, basically a margherita with a combination of fresh and aged mozzarella. Outside of pizza, the restaurant serves things like Caesar salads, cannoli, and garlic knots.

Taylor Street Kitchen

Chef Althea Grey Potter — formerly of Oui Wine Bar — has taken over the kitchen at this charming downtown Portland deli, market, and luncheonette, and it shows. Those familiar with her work know she loves bold and unending layers of flavor, which appears here in dishes like roasted delicata squash salad, tossed in harissa vinaigrette with sunflower seed dukkah, goat cheese, and pomegranate seeds. Other salads from the case range from potato salad with sheep’s milk feta to red quinoa and carrots with dijon-citrus vinaigrette; they’re best paired with the roast chicken served as a part of Taylor Street’s lunch plate. Otherwise, the cacio e pepe chicken salad, bolstered with sundried tomato pesto, is a standout.

Tasty Corner Chinese Restaurant

This downtown Chinese restaurant is creating a buzz online for its tingly mapo tofu, Chongqing chicken, and hand-shaven noodles. All of the above are available for lunch at a reduced price, plus Chinese American standards like General Tso’s chicken and Mongolian beef. Additionally, Tasty Corner offers a variety of lunch specials, with a cup of hot-and-sour or egg-flower soup and rice included.

Love Belizean

The Belizean chicken at this downtown spot is a favorite among Portland State University students, who stop in for plates of saucy chicken thighs, coconut rice, and the restaurant’s unforgettable habanero sauce. On rainy afternoons, it’s best to add on a bowl of coconut curry soup. Vegans can stick around for coconut curry stewed red beans.

Murata Restaurant

For decades, downtown workers have popped into this old-school Japanese restaurant for combination lunches of broiled salmon, tonkatsu, or sashimi, complete with sunomono, steamed rice, and miso soup. On cold days, Murata’s tempura-topped udon is straight-up comfort food. For a business lunch, reserve one of the restaurant’s tatami rooms for both privacy and comfort.

Prost Marketplace

The Prost Marketplace pod, next to the North Portland German beer bar, is home to a number of carts consistently serving lunch. Desi’s bowls of yellow-hued basmati rice, topped with tandoori tempeh or cardamom-chai chicken or masala pulled pork, deliver for a multifaceted mid-week meal. Matt’s BBQ easily makes some of the city’s best brisket, available a la carte by the half-pound or chopped in a sandwich with pickles and slaw. And for those who would rather repeat breakfast than move on to lunch fare, Fried Egg I’m in Love is open daily with pesto-slathered egg sandwiches. Prost Marketplace is home to ample covered and heated seating within the pod.

Mamma Khouri's

This North Williams restaurant, which the owners describe as “Middle Eastern,” offers a number of strong lunch options, from meze platters to share with coworkers to pita-wrapped sandwiches stuffed with juicy lamb shawarma or falafel. Mamma Khouri’s also offers things like Turkish coffee to perk up mid-work day, as well as hard-to-find Lebanese and Syrian smoothies for an on-the-go treat.

Obon Shokudo

Vegans love this Southeast Grand spot for its supremely comforting, homey Japanese food, ranging from earthy miso stew to onigiri stuffed with misozuke. Those who prefer a lighter lunch will appreciate Obon’s wide range of onigiri, an easy grab-and-go option; those looking to linger should start with some crispy kabocha korokke, followed by a bowl of the restaurant’s lovely, handmade udon noodles.

Nong's Khao Man Gai

It simply wouldn’t feel right to omit Nong’s from this map, a standby for comforting mid-week lunches of impeccably cooked rice, tender chicken, and that citrusy ginger sauce. To switch things up, get the pork rice or peanut sauce chicken instead of the restaurant’s famous khao man gai. Nong’s is also one of the few restaurants on this map to feature a kid’s menu.

Pasture PDX

A butcher’s shop and market in Northeast Portland, Pasture is open Tuesdays through Fridays for roast beef sandwiches with clothbound cheddar, house pastrami Reubens with carrot thousand island, and beef mortadella with pickled peppers. Those grabbing a quick lunch before heading home can grab Oregon-raised meats from the butcher case for dinner.

Mirisata

When stopping by this worker-owned, vegan Sri Lankan restaurant, start with a short eats sampler, a snack-y tray of rolls stuffed with Impossible beef and potato curry, split pigeon pea fritters, and jackfruit curry croquettes, among others. From there, options are endless, depending on the vibe. For a quick lunch break meal, the restaurant’s rotating selection of stuffed roti — filled with everything from cashew cheese to spiced vegetables — is smart, easy to eat while walking down Belmont; for those sticking around, the rotating rice and curry plate is the move, a colorful array of sambals, curries, and “deviled” (read: spicy) vegetables and proteins. Keep an eye out for specials on Instagram.

Rukdiew Cafe

This Southeast Belmont Thai restaurant is a cheery spot for a mid-week lunch, with plush, rose-pink bar stools and robin’s egg blue booths. The food matches the decor — dishes here are colorful and bright, crunchy salad rolls followed by a lime-laden larb. Rukdiew also serves some of the finest khao soi in the city, with a brick-red slick of chile oil floating above a nuanced broth teeming with cinnamon and coriander. It’s best paired with a Cherry Blossom, a nonalcoholic cocktail made with pomegranate juice and lychee.

Paadee

The lunch special at this East 28th Thai restaurant is a popular option for those working around Laurelhurst or Kerns on a weekday: Diners choose from a variety of main protein options, which come with a side of soup; a soft boiled egg; a carb like sticky rice, jasmine rice, or noodles; and papaya salad. The list includes favorites from the main dinner menu like the crispy chicken dish gai grop sam yan or the sweet and saucy eggplant dish pad makhua.

Bluto's

This Greek spot from the man behind Lardo serves skewers of juicy lamb souvlaki alongside silky hummus and bright tzatziki, with sheets of fresh-baked pita for swiping and stuffing. Around lunchtime, the restaurant’s salads are a smart choice, hearty and filled with things like whipped sheep’s cheese or beets and tahini. Add some souvlaki for protein, and a swirl of soft serve to get through the rest of the day.

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Oma's Hideaway

This ultra-cool Southeast Division restaurant serves lunch every day, with things like char siu-topped breakfast sandwiches, vegan roti wraps with green pea and mint fritters, and a filet-o-fishball sandwich with Sichuan peppercorn tartar sauce. Hits from the restaurant’s dinner menu are also available here, including the knockout roti with curry for dipping and the char siu pork belly rice bowl.

Viking Soul Food - Woodstock

This tiny Scandinavian restaurant in Woodstock, the companion to the long-standing Belmont food cart, stuffs lefse — basically Nordic crepes — with Norwegian meatballs and gravy, smoked steelhead with pickled shallots, and ligonberry jam and cream cheese, served alongside snacks like pickled herring, pickled eggs, and Scandinavian rye bread. The lefse wraps make for a great lunch on the go, though dining there means you can linger for a skyr-cardamom panna cotta or ligonberry thumbprint cookie.

Rose VL Deli

This cheery Vietnamese soup spot on Powell is easily worth the hype, with rotating bowls every day but Sunday and Wednesday. Any given visit might involve buoyant pork meatballs floating in a pristine broth, or bowls filled with wontons and char siu pork. It’s hard to go wrong, and each visit can involve thick, stuffed salad rolls and Vietnamese iced coffee.

Cameo Cafe East

This cottagecore-adjacent Roseway diner serves a nice balance of Korean and American standbys during lunch: Some tables may be covered in BLTs, burgers, and Monte Cristos, while others may support bowls of mandu soup, bulgogi, and bindae-tteok. It’s best to order from both categories, particularly where they intersect: breakfast plates with kimchi, bulgogi burger specials.

Fortune BBQ Noodle House

The best time to arrive at this Montavilla Cantonese barbecue spot is right when it opens: Juicy, sienna-hued roast ducks hang from hooks in the case, lined up alongside full racks of roast pork and char siu. Many who visit Fortune BBQ stop in for noodle soups, loaded with an array of meats and shrimp-stuffed wontons; however, it’s hard to beat a simple plate of roast meats, piled next to a tangle of noodles or a mound of rice.

Pah!

This Deaf-owned Lents spot is one of the very few Portland restaurants that actively accommodates Deaf diners, taking orders in American Sign Language; the team also uses speech-to-text software for hearing diners. Pah! is also a strong spot for a burger — not caught up in the super-thin smash burger trend, these are thick, juicy burgers, particularly the Champ, a barbecue-bacon cheeseburger. Those up for a challenge can start with the restaurant’s take on a blooming onion.

Related Maps