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A platter of skewered meat and rice.
A platter from Al Baraka Market and Grill.
Al Baraka Market and Grill

6 Halal-Friendly Restaurants in the Triangle

Offering partially or fully halal menus, these restaurants serve the cuisines of Yemen, Turkey, and beyond

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A platter from Al Baraka Market and Grill.
| Al Baraka Market and Grill

April 1 marks the first day of Ramadan, the ninth month of the Muslim calendar marked by daily fasting from sunup to sundown. Here in the Triangle, home to dozens of mosques and the state’s largest Muslim population, thousands of North Carolinians will celebrate by gathering with friends and family to break the fast each evening. Luckily they have a plethora of halal markets to choose from when shopping for their daily iftar, such as Durham’s Al Taiba Halal Market, Cary’s Baghdad Bakery, and Al-Kareem Grocery in Morrisville.

While some may break the fast at home, others choose to head out to one of the region’s many halal restaurants (halal is a religious set of dietary guidelines akin to Jewish kosher laws) for their evening meal. Even for those who don’t celebrate Ramadan, this could be a great opportunity to experience some of the Triangle’s best Middle Eastern eateries. These six restaurants run the gamut from pan-Mediterranean cuisine to Yemeni, Turkish, and even Nepalese specialties, showing that the variety of halal cuisines is as diverse as the Muslim world itself.

(Note: some restaurants may not be fully halal, but offer at least a partial halal menu.)

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Al Baraka Market and Grill

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Al Baraka is part grocery store, part grill, and catering operation. The grocery carries common Middle Eastern dry goods, fruits, and vegetables, and the store also has an in-house halal butcher. On the grill side of things the menu offers Mediterranean standards like kofta, shawarma, grilled lamb, kibbeh, and dolmas. Larger platters can be ordered for parties or take-home.

Yemen Kitchen

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Yemen Kitchen is a small, family-run restaurant specializing in Yemenite staples such as fahsa (shredded beef served with cooked vegetables and hilbeh, a fenugreek-based whipped condiment), kibda (fresh lamb liver, flash-fried with tomatoes, onions, and special seasoning), and saltah (a traditional Maraq-based Yemeni vegetable stew).

Talullas

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Talullas Turkish Restaurant has been a Franklin Street mainstay for years. The menu of mezze, main courses, and desserts is perfect for a family-style feast. There is sezbeli moussaka, with layers of eggplant, zucchini, carrots, and other vegetables in a bechamel sauce. The Hünkar Beğendi (Sultan’s Delight) is dish with Ottoman roots that comes with a choice of cubed beef or chicken over a smoked eggplant sauce.

Himalayan Nepali Cuisine

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Samosa chaat, chili chicken, chow chow soup, and of course plenty of momos all can be found on the menu at downtown Cary’s Himalayan Nepali Cuisine. There is a large menu of vegetarian options like bhindi masala, malai kofta, aloo gobi, and more, making it a great spot for a meat-free iftar.

Mediterrasian Bistro and Catering

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Mediterranean meets the Phillipines at Mediterrasian Bistro, where the menu features dishes like pancit, chicken adobo, and lumpia alongside falafel wraps, tabouli salads, and lamb shawarma. The kabob mishakel for two to four people is a great choice for groups, and fans of Filipino desserts will be happy to see halo-halo on the menu. The entire menu is mostly, but not completely halal, so make sure to ask the server when ordering.

Greek Kouzina

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Pittsboro’s Greek Kouzina is both halal and alcohol-free, and is open seven days a week. Perfect for a more casual iftar, the menu features items like shish kebab platters, Greek-style burgers, and a number of pita sandwiches. Classic sides like hummus, dolma, tzatziki, falafel, and more are also available, and the restaurant is happy to put together larger platters for at home dining with friends and family.

Al Baraka Market and Grill

Al Baraka is part grocery store, part grill, and catering operation. The grocery carries common Middle Eastern dry goods, fruits, and vegetables, and the store also has an in-house halal butcher. On the grill side of things the menu offers Mediterranean standards like kofta, shawarma, grilled lamb, kibbeh, and dolmas. Larger platters can be ordered for parties or take-home.

Yemen Kitchen

Yemen Kitchen is a small, family-run restaurant specializing in Yemenite staples such as fahsa (shredded beef served with cooked vegetables and hilbeh, a fenugreek-based whipped condiment), kibda (fresh lamb liver, flash-fried with tomatoes, onions, and special seasoning), and saltah (a traditional Maraq-based Yemeni vegetable stew).

Talullas

Talullas Turkish Restaurant has been a Franklin Street mainstay for years. The menu of mezze, main courses, and desserts is perfect for a family-style feast. There is sezbeli moussaka, with layers of eggplant, zucchini, carrots, and other vegetables in a bechamel sauce. The Hünkar Beğendi (Sultan’s Delight) is dish with Ottoman roots that comes with a choice of cubed beef or chicken over a smoked eggplant sauce.

Himalayan Nepali Cuisine

Samosa chaat, chili chicken, chow chow soup, and of course plenty of momos all can be found on the menu at downtown Cary’s Himalayan Nepali Cuisine. There is a large menu of vegetarian options like bhindi masala, malai kofta, aloo gobi, and more, making it a great spot for a meat-free iftar.

Mediterrasian Bistro and Catering

Mediterranean meets the Phillipines at Mediterrasian Bistro, where the menu features dishes like pancit, chicken adobo, and lumpia alongside falafel wraps, tabouli salads, and lamb shawarma. The kabob mishakel for two to four people is a great choice for groups, and fans of Filipino desserts will be happy to see halo-halo on the menu. The entire menu is mostly, but not completely halal, so make sure to ask the server when ordering.

Greek Kouzina

Pittsboro’s Greek Kouzina is both halal and alcohol-free, and is open seven days a week. Perfect for a more casual iftar, the menu features items like shish kebab platters, Greek-style burgers, and a number of pita sandwiches. Classic sides like hummus, dolma, tzatziki, falafel, and more are also available, and the restaurant is happy to put together larger platters for at home dining with friends and family.

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