June 26, 2022

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11 Houston restaurants for late-night food

5 min read

When late-night cravings hit or you need a spot to soak up a few drinks, the easy option is usually to find the nearest drive-thru. But a greasy bag of fast food tacos doesn’t have to be your go-to midnight meal.

Houston is the land of plenty for good food, even past 11 p.m. From tacos to ramen to French toast, it’s not hard to find a restaurant or bar that still has the stove on to fill the void. And several of these spots serve drinks, should the night not be over yet. 

Here are 11 restaurants and bars in Houston for great late-night eats.

Meat and cheese plate at Anvil Bar & Refuge. 

Meat and cheese plate at Anvil Bar & Refuge. 

Hillary H. via Yelp

Anvil Bar & Refuge

Although it’s known as one of the best cocktail bars in the country, Anvil also has food to soak up the well-crafted booze. Snack on a selection of charcuterie with bread from Magnol French Baking, one of the bar’s sandwiches, or ice cream from Craft Creamery. If you happen to be there when the lobster roll is on the menu, grab it. It pairs nicely with a daiquiri or Pimm’s cup.

Open: 4 p.m.-2 a.m., daily

BB's Tex-Orleans has several locations in the Houston area.

BB’s Tex-Orleans has several locations in the Houston area.

Courtesy BB’s Tex-Orleans, Photographer

BB’s Tex-Orleans

BB’s Tex-Orleans has many locations across the Houston area, plenty of which are open until midnight or later, but the Cajun spot’s Montrose location is always open extra late. Find French Quarter favorites from po’ boys and gumbo to fried shrimp and crawfish by the pound. Create your own late-night boil with BB’s boil menu, where you can choose your seafood or meat, then add sausage, vegetables and dipping sauce.

Open: 11 a.m.-3 a.m., Sunday-Wednesday; 11 a.m.-4 a.m., Thursday-Saturday

Cantina Barba offers a variety of tacos (chorizo, beef fajita, smoked pork shoulder, chicken) served with house-made salsa. The small taco and mezcal restaurant is from the owners of Taqueria Barba taco truck.

Cantina Barba offers a variety of tacos (chorizo, beef fajita, smoked pork shoulder, chicken) served with house-made salsa. The small taco and mezcal restaurant is from the owners of Taqueria Barba taco truck.

Megha Tejpal

Cantina Barba 

Tacos and late nights always go hand in hand, especially at Cantina Barba in the Heights, open seven days a week until at least 2 a.m. Breakfast tacos are served all day alongside classics such as al pastor and barbacoa tacos, and you’ll find birria tacos there every Monday. Stopping on a weekend? Cantina Barba’s adjoining shipping container Mijo Mezcal Bar is open Thursday through Saturday until 2 a.m.

Open: 9 a.m.-2 a.m., Sunday-Thursday; 9 a.m.-3 a.m., Friday-Saturday

The Toasted Juicy Lucy (chicken tenders, pickles and slaw sandwiched between Texas Toast grilled cheese) is a new menu item at Clutch City Cluckers food truck.
The Toasted Juicy Lucy (chicken tenders, pickles and slaw sandwiched between Texas Toast grilled cheese) is a new menu item at Clutch City Cluckers food truck.Clutch City Cluckers

Clutch City Cluckers 

Clutch City Cluckers has expanded its food truck fleet to two in Houston, one in San Antonio and one coming soon to Katy, all open late. Pick between the chicken tender basket, cheesy fries or the “Cluck It Like It’s Hot” sandwich with chicken tenders, slaw mix and pickles on a brioche bun, at your choice of heat level. It also has one heavy-hitter endorsement: the food truck just signed a partnership with Trae tha Truth.

Open: 10 a.m.-5 a.m., daily at 5550 Val Verde St.

Chicken fried steak at Dot Coffee Shop.

Chicken fried steak at Dot Coffee Shop.

J.C. Reid.

Dot Coffee Shop

For when you want a classic diner breakfast plate, but aren’t desperate enough to step into an IHOP. Open since 1967 and owned by Houston’s Pappas Restaurants company, the retro 24-hour Dot Coffee Shop diner promises comfort food as good as mom’s, including all-day breakfast, French toast, two-egg breakfasts, biscuits, chicken fried steak, pot roast and lots and lots of pie.

Open: 24 hours, daily 

Pan Fried Pork Bun, Green Onion Pancake and Steamed Vegetable Mushroom Dumpling by Fu Fu Cafe.
Pan Fried Pork Bun, Green Onion Pancake and Steamed Vegetable Mushroom Dumpling by Fu Fu Cafe.Bill Olive/For the Chronicle

FuFu Café

The extensive menu at FuFu Café in Bellaire can satisfy those looking for authentic Chinese dishes and orange chicken loyalists alike. With table service until 2 a.m., it’ll feel like more than just an afterthought meal or takeout on the couch.

Open: 11 a.m.-2 a.m., daily 

The Austin-based Michael Hsu Office of Architecture designed the new Katz's Deli in the Heights.

The Austin-based Michael Hsu Office of Architecture designed the new Katz’s Deli in the Heights.

Peter Wood

Katz’s Deli

There’s no such thing as too late at Katz’s, where the slogan is aptly “Katz’s never kloses.” The New York-style 24-hour deli got its start in Austin before moving to Houston. Find plenty of deli classics such as the reuben and French dip sandwiches, matzo ball soup, pasta and steak dinners, all-day-and-night breakfast, plus an extensive drink menu. To satisfy a late-night sweet tooth, finish with Katz’s cheesecake shake—a whole slice of cheesecake blended into a milkshake.

Open: 24 hours, daily

Night Shift

Come for the cocktails, stay a while for the plates coming from the kitchen. Night Shift, which opened in 2021 in Houston’s East End, pairs its cocktails with reimagined versions of your favorite late night snacks—chicharrones, a “gas station burrito,” churros, or General Tso’s chicken in a sandwich—but also a butternut squash warm salad, yuca fries and crab salad patacones. The bar also hosts a burger special on Mondays, where a burger and a beer will run you only $10. 

Open: 4 p.m.-2 a.m. daily

The entrance to Ninja Ramen. 

The entrance to Ninja Ramen. 

Darla Guillen/Houston Chronicle

Ninja Ramen

This isn’t your 25 cent brick ramen boiled in the dead of night. Ninja Ramen has a small but mighty menu of steaming bowls of ramen; mazeman, brothless “ramen” in a cream sauce; aburamen, spicy garlic “oil noodles”; spam musubi; and ice cream—a nice last stop after a night out.

Open: 6 p.m.-2 a.m., Tuesday-Sunday

Pho Binh By Night

It’s hard to go wrong with a midnight bowl of pho, especially when it’s from a restaurant with “by night” in its name. Pho Binh By Night, the late-night version of one of the city’s favorite Vietnamese spots, serves its classic pho until well past dinner time. The menu may not be huge—two appetizer options and a variety of chicken or beef pho—but it hits the spot.

Open: 4 p.m.-12 a.m., Tuesday-Sunday

Trash Panda features a menu from chef Lyle Bento. Shown: Wedge salad and Purple Kush made with two types of rum, ginger soda and lime.

Trash Panda features a menu from chef Lyle Bento. Shown: Wedge salad and Purple Kush made with two types of rum, ginger soda and lime.

Dylan Scardino

Trash Panda Drinking Club 


Trash Panda Drinking Club separates its menu into “Pasta” and “Not Pasta,” which is maybe how every menu ever should read. The cocktail bar that displays a neon sign proclaiming “death is coming, eat trash, be free” serves half or full plates of carbonara, ravioli, and ragu; “supa thicc pizza”; birria tacos; and the “Baddie Melt.” Wash it all down with a staff pick cocktail or an adventurous bubblegum martini.

Open: 6 p.m.-2 a.m., Monday-Saturday; 11 a.m.-2 a.m. for Sunday brunch

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