Back in our dorm-dwelling days, our standards for ramen were a touch different than they are today. Many a dinner consisted of ripping open a pack of instant noodles, adding some hot water and calling it a night. But now that our taste buds have gotten an #adult makeover, we are here to tell you that there are some scrumptious *homemade* ramen dishes that don’t come from a plastic package.
This Japanese comfort food is the perf dish to cozy up to on a freezing cold winter night. From classic concoctions topped with tender pork to spicy versions drizzled with chili oil and totally out-there creations, like fried chicken ramen, you’re bound to find one that exceeds your soup expectations. Here are the best ramen restaurants in Canada to slurp and sip on a steaming bowl.
Best Ramen in Vancouver
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
Find it: 1690 Robson St., 558 W Broadway,
The atmosphere: With 16 locations in Japan alone and 40 other spots around the rest of the world, it’s pretty safe to say that this is one of the most internationally acclaimed ramen restaurants…like, ever. Their Japanese roots guarantee authenticity and the bustling atmosphere is proof of the chain’s global popularity.
Average cost: $12
What to order: The Shio Ramen is their most popular dish because of the velvety white tonkotsu broth. It’s topped with sliced pork, kamaboko (Japanese fish cakes), mushrooms and a red pickled plum.
Find it: 780 Bidwell St.,
The atmosphere: This popular ramen chain has taken Asia by storm with locations in Singapore, Japan, Indonesia and Malaysia, and they opened shop in Vancity last year with rave reviews. The colourful ramen bowls and easygoing atmosphere make this spot perf for date night or dinner with the fam.
Average cost: $9.50 to $14.50
What to order: The Aosa Ramen with sea lettuce (tastes like seaweed but with a more leafy consistency) and a few slices of pork which pair perfectly with the creamy chicken broth—choose between mild and spicy depending on your taste buds
Find it: 243 Union St.,
The atmosphere: This charming little community food store, complete with adorable sea-green chairs, has their shelves stocked with fresh produce, homemade preserves and other local goodies. After you do your Sunday morning shopping, stay a little while longer and indulge in their famous ramen chock-full of fresh meat and veg.
Average cost: $12
What to order: The ramen with pork shoulder, egg, sliced radish and candied bacon for the ultimate showstopper, or the vegetarian ramen with a squash and miso broth, nori (edible seaweed), scallions, radish and sesame
Find it: 622 W Pender St.,
The atmosphere: This intimate, rustic restaurant is the perf hideaway on even the coldest of winter days. The exposed brick walls, warm lighting and intimate tables make the atmosphere inviting, while the Japanese comfort food (think: ramen, dumplings and sake) will truly be the thing to warm you up.
Average cost: $12.50 to $13.80
What to order: The Spicy Aka Tonkotsu Ramen for a next-level kick. The pork-based broth is topped with pork char siu (BBQ pork) and kikurage (a type of mushroom), drizzled with their housemade chili oil.
The Ramen Butcher
Find it: 223 E Georgia St.,
The atmosphere: This authentic Japanese ramen joint, located in the heart of Chinatown, is serving up handmade noodles, from-scratch broth and authentic flavour with a side order of gorg decor. The collection of paper swans dangling from the high ceilings adds an elegant touch to the minimalist space (complete with a giant silver “Ramen” sign above the kitchen).
Average cost: $10 to $12
What to order: The Black Garlic Ramen with their signature pork broth, marinated pork, egg and roasted garlic oil for a deliciously smokey flavour
Best Ramen in Calgary
Jinya Ramen Bar
Find it: 800 4 St. SW #180,
The atmosphere: There’s a reason this popular chain has over 33 locations across North America: this ain’t your average ramen. For ramen enthusiasts looking to upgrade their game, you have to try one (or more) of their creative, out-there concoctions. Calgary’s location is just as covetable with sleek wooden tables, bright bulb lighting and eye-catching red ramen bowls.
Average cost: $10.80
What to order: The Lobster Me Happy Ramen in a pork broth with a decadent lobster sauce, shrimp and lobster wontons, crispy brussels sprouts, green onions, a seasoned egg and a lobster head
Find it: 827 1 Ave. NE,
The atmosphere: The father-and-son duo behind Shiki Menya, which means “four seasons noodle house” in Japanese, focus on making quality ramen from scratch using local ingredients. This hip, modern eatery has funky tiled walls, gorgeous light fixtures above the bar and an all-around trendy vibe that makes you feel like you’ve discovered the hottest place in town before your friends have. Make sure to come early as they close as soon as they run out of ingredients for the day.
Average cost: $14
What to order: The Chili Goma Ramen with tokyo negi, spicy chopped pork with veggies, chili oil, sesame, peanuts, dried chilis
Muku Japanese Ramen
Find it: 326 14 St. NW,
The atmosphere: When it comes to the mouthwatering ramen at this traditional Japanese eatery, it doesn’t get any more authentic than this. Head chef Sakamoto trained in Fukuoka, Japan where Tonkotsu ramen was born, so you can bet he brought the OG techniques and flavours of this iconic comfort food all the way to Calgary.
Average cost: $9.50 to $13.95
What to order: The Miso Wonton Ramen with a chicken and fish broth, their special miso paste, chasu (sliced pork), green onions, corn kernels, boiled beans sprouts, bambo shoots, carrots, nori and four pork wontons for added heartiness
Goro + Gun
Find it: 7 Ave. SW #245, Scotia Centre,
The atmosphere: Specializing in Japanese BBQ, sake and ramen (yaaaas!), this 150-seat noodle bar is *the* place to be for your next GNO (girls night out, obvs). The ample seating, bright red and light wood accents and uplifting, feel-good vibe will get you stocked to slurp (on some gourmet ramen of course).
Average cost: $13 to $16.50
What to order: The Spicy Lamb Ramen with shiitake mushrooms, bamboo shoots, arugula and fried onions in a pork broth. For gluten-free babes, you can order the rice noodles or spinach noodles in your ramen instead.
Best Ramen in Edmonton
Find it: 3803 Calgary Trail NW, 11160 Ellerslie Rd. SW, 11238 104 Ave. NW,
The atmosphere: This family-owned and operated biz has been perfecting the art of ramen since they opened their first location in 2011. You’ll feel right at home when you take a seat at this warm and friendly restaurant, because when you’re dining with the Chans you are a part of the family.
Average cost: $13 to $15.50
What to order: The Tan Tan Ramen with a sesame and chili broth, homemade peanut paste, spicy sesame and ground pork, topped with peanuts, green onions and nori
Prairie Noodle Shop
Find it: 10350 124 St. #4,
The atmosphere: As the resto’s name would suggest, the talented team of chefs are kind of obsessed with all things noodles. More specifically: ramen inspired by the Prairies. Their ethos of sourcing local ingredients is found in their décor with tons of quirky animal imagery that spices up this bustling modern noodle shop.
Average cost: $19.75 to $23.75
What to order: The Spicy Garlic Miso Pork Bowl is perf for those who want to bring all of the heat. Their signature pork broth is turned up a notch with miso, garlic and homemade chili oil, topped with roasted pork belly, smoked shoulder, sweet corn, sesame seeds and an umeboshi egg.
Find it: 10205 82 Ave. NW,
The atmosphere: Plane tickets to Japan can be v. expensive, so the next time you’re craving authentic Tokyo street food book a table at this chic restaurant, complete with long wooden communal tables and Asian-inspired screens. After you finish your dins, walk down their little Tokyo Street alley lined with vending machines, pachinko games, manga and anime figurines. You might just forget you’re in Edmonton.
Average cost: $13.80
What to order: The Dorinku Miso Ramen. The eponymous dish has a slow-cooked pork and chicken broth with soybean paste, pork chashu (BBQ pork), kaiware radish sprouts, green onion and shredded spicy pepper, drizzled with black oil.
Best Ramen in Saskatoon
Cafe Japa Bowl
Find it: 821 Broadway Ave.,
The atmosphere: This laidback locale, also called an Izakaya restaurant a.k.a a casual Japanese pub, has a petite interior which seats only about 20 people and a team of friendly, passionate chefs that have mastered authentic ramen.
Average cost: $13.95 to $15.95
What to order: The BBQ Pork Ramen with tender pork belly, miso, ground soybeans, carrots, onions, green onions and a boiled egg
Sticks and Stones
Find it: 226 2 Ave. S,
The atmosphere: If you’re curious where the city’s foodies go to get their ramen kick, look no further than this contemporary, ultra-cool eatery. The eye-catching Japanese-inspired murals add an edgy punch to the otherwise subdued black and wooden interior.
Average cost: $16
What to order: The Spicy Ramen with pork and chicken broth, farm egg, sliced pork shoulder, kimchi, nori and Korean chilli for a kick
Best Ramen in Winnipeg
Yujiro Japanese Restaurant
Find it: 1822 Grant Ave.,
The atmosphere: This casual sushi bar may have a laidback vibe with black leather booths and a simple dark wood and black colour palette, but the food is what truly steals the show. Chef and co-owner Edward Lam brings the flavours of Japan from his culinary experience overseas to the heart of Winnipeg. If you’re craving ramen, make sure to book a table during lunch from Wednesday to Sunday, because that is the only time they’re serving the delish dish.
Average cost: $12 to $15
What to order: The Dan Dan Ramen is perf for peanut lovers with a spicy peanut pork broth, ground pork, marinated pork chop, peanuts and green onion.
Find it: 185 Isabel St.,
The atmosphere: If you’re looking to upgrade your ramen game, you have to hit up this colourful restaurant known for giving a modern makeover to this classic comfort food (see: curry shrimp ramen). With bamboo-green walls, blonde wood and a can’t-miss neon sign out front, this spot will be your new go-to for satisfying your soup craving all season long.
Average cost: $11.25 to $14
What to order: The Curry Shrimp Ramen with a decadent curry broth, fresh shrimp, beansprouts, carrots, potato and daikon (white radish)
Find it: 190 Smith St., Unit #1,
The atmosphere: With a long black granite sushi bar, psychedelic printed booths and plenty of bright lighting, this newly renovated Japanese restaurant is a modern oasis for when you’re craving anything from California rolls to tuna poké and ramen with a contemporary twist.
Average cost: $12 to $13
What to order: The Karamiso Ramen with fish and pork broth, sliced pork, sesame seeds and veggies tossed in spicy mayo and a half-boiled egg
Best Ramen in Toronto
Find it: 24 Wellesley St. W,
The atmosphere: This expansive Japanese restaurant has the coolest décor, from the artistic wooden beams on the ceiling meant to emulate a thunderstorm, the rich red leather chairs and intricate carved figurines. Despite the chic interior, the ramen is truly what takes centre stage.
Average cost: $12.80 to $17.10
What to order: The Tsukemen Ramen if you’re looking for something a little different than the traditional. This fish and soy sauce-based soup is dipping style, which means the sliced pork, egg and other toppings aren’t in the soup but on the side.
Find it: 402 Queen St. W, 51 Baldwin St., 396 Church St., 668 Bloor St. W, 90 Eglinton Ave. E #108, 5165 Yonge St.,
The atmosphere: With six locations dotted around the 6, there is no doubt that this OG joint is a fave amongst Torontonians who know a thing or two about ramen. Step inside and you’ll be greeted with intricate wooden walls, chic stools and the smell of bubbling broth.
Average cost: $11.99 to $14.99
What to order: The Chicken Spicy Jalapeño Ramen with jalapeño paste, sliced chicken breast, white onion, nori and green onions
Find it: 421 College St., 111 Richmond St. W, Assembly Chef’s Hall,
The atmosphere: With monochromatic Japanese-inspired murals, plenty of communal seating and touches of gold, black and silver, this contemporary ramen restaurant’s interior brings the wow factor along with their out-of-this-world ramen. Plus, the resto’s name means “one heart one ramen” which just goes to show how comfort food can bring all of your fave people together.
Average cost: $11.80 to $16.50
What to order: The Black Sesame Tan Tan Noodle Ramen, a customer favourite and signature dish. The ramen comes with a housemade black sesame blend, wok-fried pork, spicy chives, bok choi, pork belly cha shu (stewed pork), green onions and plenty of black sesame seeds. Plus, you can grind your own black sesame seeds on top if you want even more.
Find it: 5051 Yonge St.,
The atmosphere: This award-winning ramen restaurant has its roots in Tokyo, where chef and owner Atsushi Yamamoto perfected his craft. (So you know whatever ramen you order is going to be next level.) The modern resto’s close quarters and minimal seating mean it fills up fast, so come early if you and your crew want to secure a spot.
Average cost: $13 to $14
What to order: The Intense Shoyu Signature Clam Broth Ramen with sliced marinated pork, black truffle sauce, green onions, braised bamboo shoots, porcini mushrooms and leeks
Ryus Noodle Bar
Find it: 786 Broadview Ave.,
The atmosphere: Known for one-of-a-kind ramen broth (which has a unique blend of chicken, beef and veggie stock) found in all 13 of their bowls, this quaint noodle bar truly has something for everyone. The new location near the Danforth offers a bright interior with exposed brick and ample seating along the bar.
Average cost: $13.80 to $20
What to order: The Taiwanese Ramen with a fiery red chili broth, spicy ground chicken, bean sprouts, red chili, green onions and sesame seeds. Crank up the heat with three different levels of spice.
Best Ramen in Ottawa
Find it: 832 Somerset St. W, 280 Elgin St.,
The atmosphere: Choose between the OG location or the sushi and saki bar if you’re looking for a little booze and sashimi to pair with your steaming bowl of ramen. The Somerset spot gives us maj zen vibes with wooden panelled walls and seating, while the Elgin Street locale has eye-catching pops of red, cool textured walls and an expansive cocktail list.
Average cost: $11.95
What to order: The Tonkotsu Miso Ramen in a pork broth with sliced pork belly, soybean paste, corn, shitake mushrooms, bamboo shoots, green onions, nori and a soft boiled egg.
Find it: 153 Bank St.,
The atmosphere: With six locations around Toronto, the nation’s capital was finally blessed with their own joint last year for Ottawans looking to get their ramen fix. The simply decorated resto, complete with nautical ropes hanging from the ceiling, has a chic beige and blonde wood interior, perf for snapping a pic of your Insta-worthy bowl.
What to order: The Tonkotsu Black Ramen with pork bone broth, sliced chashu (BBQ pork), black mushrooms, green onions and a soft boiled egg, topped with roasted garlic oil, which gives the dish its distinct inky colour
Find it: 380 Elgin St.,
The atmosphere: This ultra-cool eatery is known for its trendy décor (think: recycled bulb lighting and concrete walls), upscale atmosphere and Asian small plates, like steamed buns, shrimp dumplings and tuna tartar. They always have a few ramen dishes on the menu in smaller portions so you can order several mains to sample with your pals.
Average cost: $14
What to order: The Beef Ramen with tender sliced beef brisket, fried scallions, sautéed greens and a poached egg in a rich broth, but their innovative menu is constantly changing so keep an eye out for new, creative takes on this staple comfort food
Best Ramen in Montreal
Yokato Yokabai Ramen
Find it: 4185 Drolet,
The atmosphere: Yokato Yokabai, which means “it’s excellence” in Japanese, is the kind of place where the name truly says it all. They specialize in tonkotsu ramen with a rich pork bone broth from the Hakata region of Japan. Their petite dining room with white lantern lighting, beautiful screens with Japanese writing and a rustic-chic wooden bar offers a chill backdrop for getting your ramen fix.
Average cost: $13.95 to $14.95
What to order: The Tonkotsu Pork Ramen, a classic dish you can’t go wrong with. The creamy broth, tender slices of pork, egg and green onions makes this ramen the perf introduction for first-timers.
Find it: 5207 St Laurent Blvd.,
The atmosphere: It’s all about ramen at this modern Mile-End restaurant that just opened this summer. With the fast service, use of local ingredients and authentic housemade noodles, it has quickly become a go-to spot, because you can easily swing by for a quick lunch on-the-go or stay a while and savour your steaming soup.
Average cost: $13
What to order: The Veggie Tonkotsu Ramen with pork bone broth, tofu, veggies, spinach, nori and an egg. Bonus: the resto has a vegan version of this delish concoction made with veggie broth instead.
Find it: 5329 St Laurent Blvd.,
The atmosphere: If you’re wondering where the coolest local foodies dine on a Saturday night, look no further than this trendy Japanese-fusion restaurant. Sip on one of their innovative cocktails along the sleek yellow back-lit bar or share a bowl of scrumptious ramen with your SO at the intimate square tables.
Average cost: $12
What to order: The Thazard Ramen with a pork and soy sauce broth, roasted pork, bean sprouts, bonito, nori, green onions, corn, coriander, sesame seeds and an egg
Find it: 4274 St Laurent Blvd.,
The atmosphere: With colourful Japanese prints lining the wall, a wooden wraparound counter and a spacious multi-room dining area, this inviting restaurant has an expansive menu of tartars, teriyaki, dumplings and, of course, ramen. No matter what you’re craving, Ramen-Ya has got you covered.
Average cost: $12.50 to $15
What to order: The Yasai Ramen if you’re looking to get your veggie fix—it’s stuffed with mushrooms, cucumbers, green onions, tofu and more
Schlouppe Bistrot Nakamichi
Find it: 2159 Mackay St.,
The atmosphere: This cozy little eatery is bringing all of our minimalist dreams to life. The delicate balance of steel grey walls, mixed wood and plenty of natural lighting puts all of the attention on the heaping, steaming bowls of authentic ramen.
Average cost: $11 (small), $13 (large)
What to order: The “La La La” Tan Tan Men Ramen is a colourful concoction of a creamy chicken broth, miso paste and chili and cordinder oil, topped with bok choy, sesame seeds, ground pork and chilis.
Best Ramen in Moncton
Find it: 823 Main St.,
The atmosphere: This casual, minimalist neighbourhood noodle bar has more than 15 types of ramen, so you will never be bored with the seemingly endless options. Take a seat at the long bar to sneak a peek of the chefs hard at work stewing, sautéing and steeping your ramen to perfection.
Average cost: $11 to $15
What to order: The Shoyu Ramen with chashu (stewed pork) and vegetable broth, Japanese soy sauce, sliced pork, egg and nori, topped with fresh green onions
Best Ramen in Halifax
Find it: 6214 Quinpool Rd.,
The atmosphere: Sometimes the best eateries are the ones that are undiscovered by the rest of the city. This under-the-radar gem serves up creative ramen dishes and delish dumplings on the cheap for students on a budget or couples looking for a low-key date night spot.
Average cost: $7.45 to 9.45 (small), $6.50 to $12.95 (regular)
What to order: The Crispy Fried Chicken Curry Ramen with a rich curry broth and melt-in-your-mouth fried chicken—a combination we never knew we needed until now
Water & Bone
Find it: 5687 Charles St.,
The atmosphere: Stocked with sleek wooden Japanese-inspired seating, an intimate vibe, and a sweet little patio decorated with twinkly fairy lights during the warmer months, this brand new noodle bar (it opened exactly one year ago) is the perf place to warm up frosty fingers with their local Asian comfort food.
Average cost: $9 to $11 (small), $14.50 to $15.75 (large)
What to order: The Coconut Curry Ramen with shredded leeks, toasted spiced walnuts, lime, fried ginger and green onion for a light and refreshing option without skimping on flavour
Tako Sushi and Ramen
Find it: 480 Parkland Dr.,
The atmosphere: Between the bright red lanterns hanging from the ceiling, traditional Japanese prints lining the walls and array of drool-worthy sashimi, sushi and ramen decorating the tables, there’s a reason this inviting spot is a fave amongst the locals when they’re craving some authentic Japanese cuisine.
Average cost: $11.95 to $16.95
What to order: The Seafood Ramen with fresh scallops, squid and shrimp, topped with a cracked egg, because when you’re dining in a seaside city, seafood is always a good option
Best Ramen in St. John’s
Bad Bones Ramen
Find it: 152 Water St.,
The atmosphere: As the only ramen joint in the city, you can pretty much guarantee the delish dishes are in high demand. The cozy downtown resto has a cute little take-out counter, chalkboard menu, small tables for intimate eating and statement geometric wallpaper along the side wall. Note: keep your ramen craving at bay until February 27th when they re-open after renovations.
Average cost: $10 to $14
What to order: The Blue Fin Tuna Ramen, a must-try during the warmer months because of the fresh-off-the-boat local tuna that commands all of the attention in this scrumptious dish