Lunch Restaurants in Downtown Houston

When the clock strikes lunch time, downtown Houston swarms with hungry office workers. Between the underground Tunnels, the mall food courts and various free-standing options, there are a lot of possibilities--not all of them good. But we've got suggestions for the best places for lunch downtown--simply bypass the clammy chain sandwich for gumbo, falafel or burgers at one of these downtown Houston lunch restaurants. (Photo: Falafel Factory)

Updated: August 23, 2010

Lunch Restaurants in Downtown Houston

Treebeards Restaurants

315 Travis St, Houston, TX 77002

Of all the lunch restaurants to grab a bite downtown, Treebeards is the only one that qualifies as legend. Standing in the hectic cafeteria line for a serving of red beans and rice with cornbread is a must for any Houstonian worth his residency, downtown worker or not.

Falafel Factory

914 Prairie St, Houston, TX 77002

A meal at Falafel Factory meets all the requirements for an ideal workday lunch: cheap, quick and tasty. The falafel and schwarma sandwiches are surprisingly large, as are the mountains of fries.

Hubcap Grill

1111 Prairie St, Houston, TX 77002

The best burger in Houston is conveniently sold out of a tiny joint downtown that's only open during lunch hours. So while the rest of us have to plan a trek, the surrounding workforce can easily scarf a muffuletta burger five days a week.

Doozo Co

1200 McKinney St Ste 374, Houston, TX 77010

A lot of the service in downtown Houston qualifies as brusque, but it's the people at Doozo who've earned the ?Dumpling Nazi? title. The line at this Houston Center food stand is always long with people craving the doughy pork morsels but it moves quickly--just be sure to have your order ready once you reach the cashier.

Bombay Pizza Co.

914 Main St, Houston, TX 77002

Bombay's pizza gets topped with all manner of culturally diverse ingredients from tandoori chicken to Spanish chorizo. Be sure to spring for the tamarind cola.

Byrd's Market Cafe

420 Main St, Houston, TX 77002

The usual salads and sandwiches get gourmet upgrades at this hybrid grocery and restaurant. The fried green tomato burger is outstanding, but be warned that food coma is an inevitable side effect.

Les Givral's Kahve

801 Congress St, Houston, TX 77002

One of the most well-known names in Houston Vietnamese has a restaurant on Market Square. We think the pho is better at other locations but a BBQ pork sandwich never fails to hit the spot.

El Rey Taqueria

233 Main St, Houston, TX 77002

El Rey might not be the best place to lunch if you have any important afternoon meetings. Between the juicy rotisserie chicken, the sloppy pastor torta and drippy taco, there's no way your shirt will come out the other end without a stain on it.