Where to Eat at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)

The holiday travel season is upon us, which means that it’s time for an update of Eater Dallas’ guide to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport. One of the largest and busiest airports in the country, DFW offers a surprisingly diverse array of dining options, ranging from reliable chains to Texas institutions and restaurants from some of the city’s best chefs.

Generally, the best restaurants at DFW can be found in Terminal D, where international flights depart, but there’s plenty to eat — and drink — no matter where your gate is. Whether you’re looking for a sit-down steak dinner during a lengthy layover or a quick sandwich and cup of coffee before your trip, consult this terminal-by-terminal guide to the best dining options at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.

Drink among legends at the Dallas Cowboys Club
Lorena Garcia Tapas Y Cocina

Terminal A

Best bet for a sit-down meal: Lorena Garcia Tapas Y Cocina
Celebrity chef and cookbook author Lorena Garcia doesn’t operate any Dallas restaurants outside of the airport, but her tapas-focused dishes (think marinated olives, Peruvian corn gratin, and ropa vieja) are probably the best dining option in Terminal A. [gate A33]

Best bet for boozing before a flight: Dallas Cowboys Club
Fans of America’s Team will definitely want to stop by for a drink at this swanky lounge. The space is decorated with photos of Cowboys legends, the booze is cold, and the menu of Tex-Mex fare is perfect for fueling up before a flight. Come football season, you can also catch a few downs on the bar’s many televisions. [gate A22]

The rest:

  • Au Bon Pain — [gate A34]
  • Auntie Anne’s Pretzels — [gate A21]
  • Bleu Mediterranean Bar — A comfy spot for cocktails & Mediterranean fare like flatbreads, soups, salads, and falafel. [gate A9]
  • California Pizza Kitchen — A popular West Coast pizza chain offering an assortment of loaded pies made-to-order. [gate A29]
  • Dunkin’ Donuts — [gate A13]
  • Einstein Bros. Bagels — [gate A9 and gate A11]
  • La Madeleine — French-inspired cafe with soups, salads, and sandwiches. [gate A25]
  • Ling & Louie’s — Asian fusion fare like sushi, lettuce wraps, and wok-fried rice bowls alongside American classics like meatloaf & burgers. [gate A13]
  • McDonald’s — [gate A17 and gate A34]
  • Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen — Texas-based chain with Cajun seafood (blackened catfish, perhaps?) and fresh oysters from the Gulf and East Coast. [gate A24]
  • Pappasito’s Cantina — Tex-Mex classics like queso, tamales, enchiladas, and of course, margaritas. [gate A28]
  • Pinkberry — [gate A19 and gate A25]
  • Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen — [gate A16]
  • Qdoba — Quick-serve quesadillas, tacos, and more. [gate A16]
  • Starbucks — [gate A20 and gate A37]
  • TGI Fridays — [gate A13]
  • The Salt Lick Bar-B-Que — A Hill Country barbecue icon. [gate A16]
  • Twisted Root — Popular local burger joint with a variety of proteins and boozy milkshakes. [gate A25]
  • Vino Volo — Swanky spot for wine and a selection of dishes that were created to pair with the perfect red or white. [gate A17]
Kent Rathbun’s Hickory

Terminal B

Best bet for a pre-flight food coma: Cousins Bar-B-Q
While DFW Airport has plenty of barbecue options, not all smoked meats are created equally. Recognized as one of the state’s best smokehouses, this family-owned joint serves up brisket, ribs, and a bounty of sides that will induce a meat coma perfect for in-flight sleeping. [gate B12 and gate B43]

The rest:

  • Auntie Anne’s Pretzels — [gate B29]
  • Baskin-Robbins — [gate B43]
  • Cantina Laredo — Tex-Mex spot with strong margaritas and solid fajitas. [gate B28]
  • Dunkin’ Donuts — [gate B6 and gate B43]
  • Hickory — A barbecue joint from Chef Kent Rathbun that smokes its briskets, pork shoulder, and spare ribs on site. [gate B20]
  • Icebox Cafe — Sweet treats and coffee drinks. [gate B4]
  • McDonald’s — [gate B41]
  • Panda Express — [gate B15]
  • Red Mango — frozen yogurt [gate B10]
  • Rodeo Bar — Quick spot for a beer or shot of whiskey before departure. [gate B32]
  • Smashburger — [gate B12]
  • Starbucks Coffee — [gate B12 and gate B28]
  • Subway — [gate B24]
  • TGI Fridays — [gate B10]
  • UFood Grill — Quick spot for healthy eats. Burgers, fries, and sandwiches are on offer, but everything on the menu is baked, steamed, or grilled. Unlike the rest of the airport, there’s no fried food in sight. [gate B40]
  • Wingstop — [gate B28]
Brisket sandwich heaven at Cousin’s Bar-B-Q 

Terminal C

  • Auntie Anne’s Pretzels — [gate C12 and gate C22]
  • Baskin-Robbins — [gate C17]
  • Bleu Mediterranean Bar — A comfy spot for cocktails and Mediterranean fare like flatbreads, soups, salads, and falafel. [gate C11]
  • Boar’s Head Deli — [gate C27]
  • Caribou Coffee — [gate C6]
  • Chick-fil-A — [gate C25]
  • Chili’s — [gate C33]
  • Dickey’s Barbecue Pit — Chain barbecue joint that can totally be skipped. [gate C6]
  • Dunkin’ Donuts — [gate C17]
  • Einstein Bros. Bagels — [gate C6]
  • Freshens Smoothies and Yogurt — [gate C35]
  • Maggiano’s Little Italy — [gate C17]
  • McDonald’s — [gate C22]
  • Pappadeaux’s Seafood Kitchen — Cajun fare and a full bar [gate C14]
  • Pappasito’s Cantina — Tex-Mex and margaritas. [gate C19]
  • Pizza Hut Express — [gate C6 and gate C22]
  • Starbucks Coffee — [gate C8 and gate C21]
  • TGI Fridays — [gate C8 and gate C29]
Banh Shop DFW Airport
Banh Shop. [Photo: DFW Airport/Facebook]

Terminal D

Best bet for a memorable sit-down meal: Whitetail Bistro by Kent Rathbun
From iconic Dallas chef Kent Rathbun, Whitetail Bistro serves up French-inspired fare made with local ingredients. Kick off your morning with a pan-fried quail biscuit sandwich, or stop in for dinner to enjoy dishes like tamarind glazed salmon and lacquered crispy duck served with bacon and braised kale. [gate D22]

Best bet for a quick bite: Banh Shop
Out of all the stellar dining options in Terminal D, this Vietnamese sandwich shop is a must-try for a fast, casual meal. Pair your grilled steak or tofu on baguette with Vietnamese chicken soup or a riff on elotes (Mexican street corn) made with coconut milk and red pepper. [gate D10]

The rest:

  • Abacus — A longstanding Dallas restaurant originally started by Chef Kent Rathbun. Swanky small plates like lobster shooters and seared foie gras are on offer, alongside cocktails and wine. [gate D22]
  • Great American Bagel
  • Applebee’s — [gate D12]
  • Artisan Market — Grab & go soups, salads, and sandwiches. [gate D27]
  • Au Bon Pain — [Lower level for international arrivals]
  • Auntie Anne’s Pretzels — [gate D12 and gate D36]
  • Cantina Laredo — Tex-Mex fare and plenty of margaritas. [gate D24]
  • Chick-fil-A — [gate D18]
  • Cru Food & Wine Bar — Wines by the glass, stone-fired pizzas, and dessert in a chic space. [gate D27]
  • Grand Met and Grand Met Lounge — Upscale spot for sushi and martinis. [before security gate D23]
  • Lavazza Coffee — [gate D34]
  • McDonald’s — [gate D33]
  • Moka — Coffee, breakfast pastries, snacks & more. [before security, gate D23]
  • Reata Grill — An airport outpost of a Fort Worth legend, Texas inspired dishes like huevos rancheros, grilled ribeye, and chicken fried steak are on offer. [upper level, gate D33]
  • Rio Mambo — Tex-Mex [gate D17]
  • Shinsei — An outpost of Tracy Rathbun and Lynae Fearing’s long-running Asian restaurant on Inwood recently opened in Terminal D. It’s serving up potstickers, steam buns, and sushi rolls, alongside breakfast and beer, wine, sake, and cocktails. [gate D31]
  • Stampede 66 Express — If you didn’t make it to Stephan Pyles’ upscale Southwestern eatery in Uptown Dallas, this spot for smoked meats, sandwiches, and kid-friendly dishes offers the next best option. [gate D27]
  • Starbucks Coffee — [gate D12, gate D25, gate D28, and D30 ticket hall]
  • The Italian Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck — Pastas, pizzas, and Italian classics like eggplant parmesan, spaghetti, and vegetarian lasagna. [gate D34]
  • Flying Saucer — A Dallas-born beer bar with tons of brews on tap. [gate D20]
  • Whitetail Bistro by Kent Rathbun — Best Bet, see above. [post-security, gate D22]
Chef Tim Love’s Love Shack in Terminal E

Terminal E

Best bet for a satisfied stomach: Love Shack
A thoroughly Texan burger joint from celebrity chef Tim Love offers his locally inspired take on the classic cheeseburger. Top yours as you please, and save room for a side of those crispy thin fries. [gate E11]

  • Auntie Anne’s Pretzels — [gate E5]
  • Blimpie — hot and cold sub sandwiches with an assortment of sides. [gate E21]
  • Blue Mesa Taco & Tequila Bar — Queso, tacos, fajitas, and margaritas. [gate E31]
  • Cereality — a wide variety of cereals and even more toppings, chosen by you and prepared by pajama-wearing “cereologists.” [gate E21]
  • Chick-fil-A — [gate E6]
  • Drew Pearson’s Sports 88 — named after former Dallas Cowboys’ wide receiver Drew Pearson, this eatery serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner, with eats like smoked barbecue, burgers, sandwiches, and salads. [gate E5]
  • Dunkin’ Donuts — [gate E8, gate E5, and bag claim]
  • Genghis Grill — build-your-own stir fry bowl [gate E33]
  • IHOP — [gate E8]
  • Peet’s Coffee & Tea — [gate E18]
  • Sonny Bryan’s Smokehouse — A Dallas barbecue institution with smoked meat plates and hot, fluffy yeast rolls. [gate E13]
  • Starbucks Coffee — [gate E34]
  • Uno Due Go — Breakfast, pizza, panini, sandwiches, and more. [gate E36]
  • Wendy’s — [gate E33]

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