Top meals for lunch and breakfast in Kansas City

Aside from cupcakes, Kansas City is home to a lot of good food that every person should try if they want to have a taste of something new. The city has a wide variety of food, which gives people a lot of options when they want to eat yummy food for either lunch or breakfast.

Some say that Kansas City deserves a lot of praise for being one of the states that have a lot of options when it comes to food. From appetizers, main dishes and desserts, the state can nail all of that at any given day. This only shows more about Kansas City’s dedication to bringing the best food to anyone who wants it.

Kansas City has a lot to offer for their solid customers and those who just want to enjoy their meals. The city is best known for Kansas City Cupcake, but they are also visited for barbecue and other cow products, and the city has also proved to be a paradise for any one who is considered a foodie.

For those who have a knack for finding the best food, Kansas City’s top restaurants will never disappoint, and it only shows why it is also good to try and eat in the city. Here are some of the best meals that anyone should try to eat either in lunch or breakfast should they ever try to visit Kansas City:

Burnt ends

Burnt ends are arguably the best and most famous food to ever come from KC. This meal used to be free at most restaurants before they became mainstream. At Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque in the Jazz District, the trims of the brisket were usually offered for free as a sort of amuse-bouche to diners who would wait in line for pit-smoked meats. 

The burnt ends soon came to fame in 1972 when a KC writer named Calvin Trillin wrote about the food in an essay for Playboy Magazine. Nothing has been the same ever since and it is now a big hit among many restaurants in the city over the years.

‘The main course at Bryant’s, as far as I’m concerned, is something that is given away free — the burned edges of the brisket’, he wrote. ‘The counterman just pushes them over to the side and anyone who wants them helps himself’.

The popularity of burnt ends caused a minor problem back then. Since they are the ends of a brisket, this means that they are in short supply. People came into Bryant’s and ordered burnt ends only, and the restaurant had to improvise by making a chunk of brisket that had been double smoked and had a lot of sauce.

Owner Jerry Rauschelbach admits that they made it wrong, but the popularity of the burnt ends never died out. This meant that they had to go and serve it to meet the demands of the people. They still have a problem when it comes to stock, so the burnt ends are usually served on a limited basis.

Arthur Bryant’s archrival Gate’s BBQ did not make burnt ends back then since they pride themselves in not burning the meat. When the burnt ends became popular, the restaurant started to serve a burnt end sandwich from the most charred and greasy cuttings that they have.

Strip Steak

Strip steak is one of the most popular foods in Kansas City’s commercial area. People visit the Golden Ox steak house in the West Bottoms for this meal, and they love it so much, the city’s first strip steak signature cut was grilled at the ground floor of the Kansas City Live Stock Exchange. 

Back in the day, ranchers brought their livestock to sell in the exchange, and the steak house catered to them as a place to celebrate their sales with a big night out. The Golden Ox then opened its doors to the public back in 1949 and even survived for 65 years in its original form even when the stockyard business slowed down.

Strip steaks are cut from the bigger side of a beef loin. They have a little chew plus a huge thick rim of fat that can be helpful when grilling. A Kansas City strip steak is almost the same as the New York City version, except the fact that the rugged midwest version has bone. The more delicate coastal version has the bone trimmed out instead.

Kansas City steaks are famous for their cuts. Most butcher shops in the country sell this and have it labeled out as shipped from Kansas City. At the Golden Ox, a bone in and dry-aged strip steak is priced at $46, but that is a trophy steak and is clearly worth the price. This makes it one of the favourites whenever there is a big event in the city.

However, the best way to get the KC strip experience is to grill it at home. There are two local ranches in the Northland, namely the KC Cattle Company and the Upper Cut – who sell the best steaks in the city.

Cheesy Corn

There are a lot of theories when it comes to Kansas City’s barbecue. This has led to a lot of questions from locals and visitors alike. For starters, the sauce used in KC barbecue is not all sweet and thick. It did not even start out being sweet at all, and this is what makes the cheesy corn bake a strong side dish for a lot of BBQ houses.

A lot of BBQ joints in the city offer the cheesy corn as a side dish and is even called the ‘cheesy corn bake’ or ‘corn casserole’. There are a lot of versions for this side dish, and the people love it when it is partnered with a freshly grilled barbecue.

Unlike other known food in Kansas City, there is no debate on where it came from. In 1981, Jack Fiorella opened up a restaurant in downtown Overland Park, Hatfield & McCoy’s. Jack was the son of the owner of the landmark original Smoke Stack BBQ, and he made his own restaurant as the spinoff of his father’s Stack. 

Hatfield and McCoy’s became a big hit, and the signature dish of the restaurant was the cheesy corn. It was a gift made by Jack’s mother, and it was soon passed down to other restaurants in the city.

There was a brief struggle at Hatfield & McCoy’s and it almost took a place under Jack’s Stack. After many years of hard work, the cheesy corn was brought over as a side dish and the restaurant survived. It took over the city and became a famous food not just in Kansas City, but in many other places across the country.

Chicken Spiedini

Spiedini used to be a traditional food that came from Italy. It is a style of beef kebab and has been one of the most popular dishes that people can find in Kansas City all around. Chicken spiedini was the meal that people loved to eat in American-Italian restaurants and was invented by Mike Garozzo in 1989.

In the late 1980s, white meat was a huge boon in the city, and there were a lot of diners who preferred chicken over beef on most occasions. Pork even tried to get in on the action with ‘the other white meat campaign’. The use of chicken in leading restaurants was a huge turning point for Kansas City.

Mike planned to open his restaurant in Columbus Park, which is the iconic Italian neighborhood in Kansas City. He asked for assistance from his Uncle Alfio in St. Louis, and it turned out to be the best move he made for his life.

‘We were eating the Nonna Garozzo beef spiedini, and he said, “Mike, you don’t have enough chicken on the menu”’, Garozzo said of his talk with his Uncle. ‘I said, “We have chicken parmesan, chicken marsala—I mean, what are you going to do with it? It’s chicken”’.

Mike soon figured out something to do with the chicken, and the rest was history. He marinated chicken with olive oil, garlic, basil and breadcrumbs for up to six hours then rolled them and skewered them. The spiedini got another coating of breadcrumbs before it was charbroiled and then sauced.

The spiedini had a wide variety of flavours as well. The spiedini Georgio was mixed with crushed tomatoes, garlic and spinach with angel hair pasta. That was one of the tributes to Mike’s son in law. The original flavour was served with amogio sauce while the spiedini Samantha is served over fettuccine and alfredo sauce with artichokes.

This led to the success of the chicken spiedini. Much like Kansas City Cupcake, Mike’s restaurant became a big hit in the city and was loved by the masses.

Today, chicken spiedini can be found in a lot of red-sauce Italian restaurants in the city. Other restaurants such as Olive Garden even have their own version and has attracted a lot of people to eat in their place as well.