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When's the last time an empanada was this happy to see you?
When's the last time an empanada was this happy to see you?
Photo credit: Empa Mundo/Facebook

Where to Eat in the 'Burbs: Irving

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When's the last time an empanada was this happy to see you?
| Photo credit: Empa Mundo/Facebook

The city of Irving is one that many of us probably don't think of as a dining destination (more like a place we pass through on the way to DFW Airport), but it's actually home to some of the city's best ethnic food. Here's a guide to 15 of the best places to eat in Irving, whether you want to seek out some super-authentic Japanese or Indian food or you're just passing through on your way out of town. (Don't forget to check out the rest of the Where to Eat in the 'Burbs series: Addison, Carrollton, Richardson, Plano, Denton, Frisco, and McKinney.)

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Andalous

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Fans of Fadi's will feel right at home at this cafeteria-style Mediterranean spot offering fresh-baked pita bread and excellent hummus, gyros, lamb kebabs, falafel and more.

Captain Nemo's

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This dive of a sandwich shop has been serving up cheese steaks in Irving for 40 years. House-baked bread, provolone, grilled onions, and griddled thinly sliced steak makes for a killer sandwich paired with a cup of housemade navy bean soup or chili.

Cavalli Wood Fired Pizza

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If you're a fan of Cane Rosso, you'll enjoy the puffy, slightly charred crust of Cavalli's pizza. Try the arugula and prosciutto pie with balsamic glaze and shaved parm.

Empa Mundo

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World of empanadas, indeed -- the flaky turnovers here are perfect for a quick snack or a full-on meal, whether you opt for traditional varieties (think chicken with olives, raisins, onions and egg) or the not-so-traditional, like spinach ricotta or Texas brisket.

FM Smoke House

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This barbecue joint from the owners of Plano's Holy Grail Pub has gotten rave reviews for its bacon-injected brisket and chicken-fried steak made with smoked prime rib. Even vegetarians will find plenty to like here, like the unique Brussels sprout and beet salad.

Hanasho

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If you're looking to branch out from the California rolls and loud techno music that dominate many of DFW's trendy sushi bars, try Hanasho. Besides quality sushi, there's also some harder-to-find dishes like ramen, udon noodles, chicken katsu, shabu shabu and a "Japanese burger," two meat patties topped with fried eggs.

Kasbah Grill

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This former 7-11 is now home to some damn good Moroccan food, like chicken bastilla (a stuffed phyllo pastry dusted with powdered sugar) and lamb tagine. No alcohol is served, nor can you BYOB, but come on, one meal without booze won't kill you. [Photo: Jen R./Yelp]

LA Burger

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Why the hell doesn't the downtown/Uptown area have an LA Burger yet? The Los Angeles-style Korean-American fusion fare, like the K-Town burger with kimchi and teriyaki sauce or the Seoul Dog topped with bulgogi, would no doubt be a hit there -- but for now, you'll have to make the trek to Irving.

Maki Boy

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We fully admit that sometimes we crave Americanized sushi, like a mayo smothered, crawfish-stuffed Volcano roll or a Philadelphia roll with cream cheese. This tucked-away strip mall spot hits the spot, and the funky decor definitely helps set the mood; there's also Korean dishes like tofu soup and Korean barbecue.

Our Place

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This truly excellent, authentic Indian spot has legions of loyal fans -- including Belly & Trumpet chef Brian Zenner -- who flock here for saag paneer, samosas, fresh naan, dosas, and vada (deep-fried lentil donuts). Lunch buffet is better than most.

San Diego Taco Shop

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Solid (and dirt-cheap) SoCal-style Mexican food like carne asada burritos, "super nachos," breakfast burritos, and sopes. [Photo: Elaine C./Yelp]

Taj Chaat House

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You don't have to be a vegetarian to enjoy the Indian street food at this unique fast food joint. Order up a variety of puris, dosas, biryani, samosas, and whatever else strikes your fancy, then hit up the awesome chutney bar for appropriate acoutrement. [Photo: Steven P./Yelp]

Underground Indian Cuisine

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Authentic Indian dishes (and fantastic puffy, charred naan) as well as some unique specialties from the Peshawari region of Pakistan can be found here; the dated 80s decor matters little when the food is this good. [Photo: Abraham T./Yelp]

Via Real

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A mix of Tex-Mex, Mexican and Southwestern food served in an upscale setting, with some unique dishes like a Caprese salad that subs avocado in for the mozzarella and beef tenderloin tacos with ancho chile sauce. Top-notch chips and salsa and huge margaritas that lean toward the sweet side.

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Andalous

Fans of Fadi's will feel right at home at this cafeteria-style Mediterranean spot offering fresh-baked pita bread and excellent hummus, gyros, lamb kebabs, falafel and more.

Captain Nemo's

This dive of a sandwich shop has been serving up cheese steaks in Irving for 40 years. House-baked bread, provolone, grilled onions, and griddled thinly sliced steak makes for a killer sandwich paired with a cup of housemade navy bean soup or chili.

Cavalli Wood Fired Pizza

If you're a fan of Cane Rosso, you'll enjoy the puffy, slightly charred crust of Cavalli's pizza. Try the arugula and prosciutto pie with balsamic glaze and shaved parm.

Empa Mundo

World of empanadas, indeed -- the flaky turnovers here are perfect for a quick snack or a full-on meal, whether you opt for traditional varieties (think chicken with olives, raisins, onions and egg) or the not-so-traditional, like spinach ricotta or Texas brisket.

FM Smoke House

This barbecue joint from the owners of Plano's Holy Grail Pub has gotten rave reviews for its bacon-injected brisket and chicken-fried steak made with smoked prime rib. Even vegetarians will find plenty to like here, like the unique Brussels sprout and beet salad.

Hanasho

If you're looking to branch out from the California rolls and loud techno music that dominate many of DFW's trendy sushi bars, try Hanasho. Besides quality sushi, there's also some harder-to-find dishes like ramen, udon noodles, chicken katsu, shabu shabu and a "Japanese burger," two meat patties topped with fried eggs.

Kasbah Grill

This former 7-11 is now home to some damn good Moroccan food, like chicken bastilla (a stuffed phyllo pastry dusted with powdered sugar) and lamb tagine. No alcohol is served, nor can you BYOB, but come on, one meal without booze won't kill you. [Photo: Jen R./Yelp]

LA Burger

Why the hell doesn't the downtown/Uptown area have an LA Burger yet? The Los Angeles-style Korean-American fusion fare, like the K-Town burger with kimchi and teriyaki sauce or the Seoul Dog topped with bulgogi, would no doubt be a hit there -- but for now, you'll have to make the trek to Irving.

Maki Boy

We fully admit that sometimes we crave Americanized sushi, like a mayo smothered, crawfish-stuffed Volcano roll or a Philadelphia roll with cream cheese. This tucked-away strip mall spot hits the spot, and the funky decor definitely helps set the mood; there's also Korean dishes like tofu soup and Korean barbecue.

Our Place

This truly excellent, authentic Indian spot has legions of loyal fans -- including Belly & Trumpet chef Brian Zenner -- who flock here for saag paneer, samosas, fresh naan, dosas, and vada (deep-fried lentil donuts). Lunch buffet is better than most.

San Diego Taco Shop

Solid (and dirt-cheap) SoCal-style Mexican food like carne asada burritos, "super nachos," breakfast burritos, and sopes. [Photo: Elaine C./Yelp]

Taj Chaat House

You don't have to be a vegetarian to enjoy the Indian street food at this unique fast food joint. Order up a variety of puris, dosas, biryani, samosas, and whatever else strikes your fancy, then hit up the awesome chutney bar for appropriate acoutrement. [Photo: Steven P./Yelp]

Underground Indian Cuisine

Authentic Indian dishes (and fantastic puffy, charred naan) as well as some unique specialties from the Peshawari region of Pakistan can be found here; the dated 80s decor matters little when the food is this good. [Photo: Abraham T./Yelp]

Via Real

A mix of Tex-Mex, Mexican and Southwestern food served in an upscale setting, with some unique dishes like a Caprese salad that subs avocado in for the mozzarella and beef tenderloin tacos with ancho chile sauce. Top-notch chips and salsa and huge margaritas that lean toward the sweet side.

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