The Absolute Best Bowls of Ramen in Austin

Indulge in the ultimate cold-weather meal.

Winter is many Austinites' favorite time of year. It’s a chance to give our AC a break, wear shirts with sleeves, and most excitingly, a long-awaited reintroduction to warming comfort foods—the ones we don’t devour with our fingers and immediately wash down with a large YETI of sweet iced tea, that is. We’re talking ramen, because nothing is more satisfying in 60-degree temperatures (AKA freezing for Texas) than a big steamy bowl of bone broth, slurpy noodles, and a gooey seasoned egg.

Whie Austin’s Asian food scene errs on the smaller, “up and coming” end of the culinary spectrum, the limited Japanese restaurants that do exist are more than equipped to satiate even the most ravenous noodle craving. Here are the 10 best local places to snuggle up with a belly-warming bowl of ramen.

Ramen Tatsu-ya

Multiple locations
$$$$

Bump into any Austinite and chances are that they’ve been to Ramen Tatsu-ya. The king of noodles has locations in north, south and east Austin (plus Houston), and come dinner-time, they’re all packed with ramen junkies. The amazingly rich broth of the Tonkotsu original sets the foundation for encouraged toppings like a Spicy Bomb or extra garlic (or even more noodles, if you’re super hungry). Try the Sweet & Sour Yodas (AKA Brussels sprouts)—disappoint you, they will not.
Cost: $$
How to book: Order take-out via Toast or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Available for Delivery/Takeout
Available for Reservations
Jinya Ramen Bar
Photo courtesy of JINYA Ramen Bar

Jinya Ramen Bar

Domain
$$$$

JINYA is best known for its 20-hour slow-cooked base, and while there are branches dotted all over North America, Austin only lays claim to one. Here, a huge variety of broths await, spanning pork, shrimp, chicken, and miso. Customizing your noodles, toppings, and protein adds to the fun and makes things nice and easy for friends with dietary restrictions, plus there are heaps of sides like bao, tempura, and tacos (this is Texas after all). For those unsure where to start, try the JINYA Tonkotsu Black (pork broth, pork chashu, kikurage, green onion, nori, seasoned egg, garlic chips, and thin noodles) or the Spicy Creamy Vegan, made with equally rich and tasty veggie broth, tofu, onion, kikurage, and thick noodles. Look out for seasonal specials like Karaage Chicken Ramen, running from December to February.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Available for Delivery/Takeout

Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ

East Austin
$$$$

For anyone who’s ever visited Japan, this is a throwback to big gatherings complete with copious amounts of barbecued meats and sauces. It’s no wonder a Gyu-Kaku opened in Austin. What’s more, their menu doesn’t stop at slabs of pork—on it, you’ll discover a section of traditional ramen, including Tonkotsu (pork bone broth, kakuni chashu, egg, bell peppers), Goma Negi Shio (oxtail-based broth, kakuni chashu, egg), and Spicy Beef (kalbi soup broth, beef, veggies). Bowls are a bit on the modest side (reflected in the pricing), but that means all the more space to join in on shared barbecue plates as well as individual delights straight outta Tokyo. Happy hour deals are also offered daily.
How to book: Order take-out via ChowNow or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Available for Delivery/Takeout
Available for Reservations

At first glance, Lucky Robot may seem like a hyped-up SoCo restaurant decked out for the ‘Gram, but a decade of celebrated culinary service means the food certainly lives up to the hashtag. There’s only one ramen on the menu, but it’s a real winner, ladeh with pork belly, bean sprouts, ajitama egg, pickled ginger, aji amarillo may, and a flavorful shoyu pork broth. Also on offer is a wide selection of Japanese fare, from Chicken Teriyaki to Steamed Pork Buns to Sushi to a funky Tokyo-style smorgasbord.
How to book: Order take-out and delivery via Toast.

Available for Reservations

Ichi-Umi Ramen

West Anderson Lane
$$$$

Ichi-Umi Ramen (formerly Haru) breaks the mold for ramen shops in Austin, as it doubles as an izakaya rife with skewered grilled meats, seafood, and shareable appetizers. However, ramen is still the main attraction, thanks to a great selection of broths and styles including vegan and Tsukemen, a bowl of cold noodles served alongside hot dipping broth. Craving something a little different? Build your own bowl starting with their extra-rich black broth—made with black garlic oil and black sesame and topped with garlic chips and nori—then load up on add-ins like ajitama, baby bok choy, bean sprouts, pork chashu, and a lemon yuzu bomb for spice and brightness.

Available for Delivery/Takeout

Kanji Ramen

Shadow Oaks
$$$$

Kanji Ramen may look like a small, nondescript storefront, but the moment you enter their cartoon-decorated walls, you understand why it’s become such a local gem for all things ramen. While many claim Kanji’s Signature Ramen, which features a creamy pork bone broth with ajitama, wood ear mushrooms, grilled corn, and fried garlic as the must-have, don’t sleep on the veggie offerings either. The key is the marinated tofu they serve with it—order it spicy for the perfect kick, one that will give your broth some bite without being overbearing.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Available for Delivery/Takeout

Daruma Ramen

Hyde Park
$$$$

Once operating separately, these two sister restaurants paired up during the pandemic and continue to work together to crank out delicious ramen, sushi platters, and more. Although both are still closed for dine-in, you can order Daruma Ramen’s tasty takes for pick-up from the Komé location. The broth here is chicken-based and has a light flavor and texture—go for the Miso Ramen if you want a little more bite—but there are also two vegan options, including one with a soy, fruit, and vegetable broth plus a rainbow of fresh produce.
Cost: $$
How to order: Order take-out via Toast or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Sazan Ramen

Highland
$$$$

If Highland’s the place for top Asian cuisine, then Sazan is its shining capital. The 2020 opening has seen a steady flow of devotees come to savor their thick and creamy paitan-style ramen, lovingly made from a mixture of chicken and pork broth. Start with their now-famous Indomitable Chicken Wings (twice-cooked and seasoned with house-made spice rub) or the Takoyaki (octopus balls that transport you to the streets of Osaka), then head for the Paitan Ramen (original, spicy, or vegan) or the Ma-Yu Black Ramen (savory broth with black garlic oil and lots of veggies), and finally, go hard with every flavor of Mochidoki Mochi on the menu (don’t worry, there are only five). The restaurant also has some brilliant Japanese-inspired craft cocktails, sake, and beer available if you want to make an occasion out of it.
Cost: $$$
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Available for Delivery/Takeout

Xian Sushi & Noodle

Multiple locations
$$$$

If you’re a true noodle nerd, Xian has you covered. Xian means “fresh” in Chinese, and they are all about the freshness—which is why they hand-pull all their own noodles, not just for their ramen, but for their various other dishes on their menu, too. But never mind those, we’re here to talk ramen. The Shoyu comes with the standard clear beef broth, white radish, cilantro, and bean sprouts, the simplicity of which allows the delicate, chewy noodles to stand out even more.
Cost: $
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating, order take-out via Toast, or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Available for Delivery/Takeout

Michi Ramen

Multiple locations
$$$$

The main draw of Michi Ramen is the large selection of ramen types, add-ons, and the choice of broth thickness—light, original, or stout (for ramen fans who like it rich). While we understand the traditionalist POV, the appeal of Michi’s Jungle ramen is undeniable: Your choice of lean pork, pork belly, spicy ground pork, or chicken, loaded with crunchy bean sprouts, earthy wood ear mushrooms, green onions, fresh chilis, a lime wedge, and cilantro, all swimming in a lemongrass tonkotsu broth. And as a happy little bonus, Michi serves a nicely curated selection of Japanese and local beer.
Cost: $$
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating, order take-out via Toast, or get delivery via Uber Eats.

Available for Delivery/Takeout
Molly Moltzen is a contributor for Thrillist.
James Wong is a contributor for Thrillist.