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The Ultimate Guide to the 26 Best Soups, Chowders, and Stews in Long Beach

Soup is good food. From ramen and pozole, to clam chowder, these are the best 26 soups in Long Beach—just in time time for the first rains of the season. But real talk, these soups hit the spot year-round.

7:54 AM PST on November 15, 2023

    Nick’s on 2nd

    When you hear the word soup, what comes to mind?

    Whether it’s ramen, pozole, or clam chowder, soup evokes nostalgia for nearly everyone in every culture. These warm, savory bowls comforted and healed us time after time, regardless of our moods. Treasured across a wide swatch of the the world and human history, soups provide great insights into the cultures they come from.

    To scratch the surface of all the diverse cuisine in the city I live in, I tried many soups, stews, chowders, curries, and everything in between. Here are 26 of my favorite soups in Long Beach. 

    Ammatoli's Lentil Soup. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Ammatoli - Lentil Soup

    Ammatoli, located in Downtown Long Beach, is easily one of the city’s best restaurants, serving unparalleled Levantine cuisine in the region and regularly landing on L.A. Time’s 101 Best Restaurants list. Though I’m a fan of their mezzes across the board, their lentil soups deserve a spotlight. In particular, the green lentil soup is a delight when paired with a handful of crispy pita chips and a squeeze of lemon juice. And if you've ordered a side of freshly baked pita–you’ve got yourself a hearty, yet healthy, meal. 

    285 E. 3rd St. Long Beach, CA 90802. Closest Metro lines and stop: Metro A Line - "1st Street Station" or Bus Line 232 - "Long Beach/3rd."

    Cali Chilli's Butter Chicken Pot Pie. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Cali Chilli - Butter Chicken Pot Pie

    Long Beach isn’t known for its Indian food options, though places like Flaming Curry, Kamal Palace, and Appu’s Cafe are perfect for a quick fix. Cali Chilli attempts a more chef-driven menu that is enthusiastically influenced by the cuisines of India, embracing the “unauthentic Indian” moniker. The butter chicken pot pie entails a bowl of creamy butter chicken topped with a sheet of puff pastry. And it really hits the spot.

    4111 N. Viking Way, Long Beach, CA 90808. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 91, 93, 101, and 103 - "Carson/Bellflower."

    Cañadas Grill's Carne en su Jugo. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO

    Cañadas Grill - Carne en su Jugo

    Cañadas Grill is a humble, family-operated joint that serves pretty good Mexican food. What makes them stand out, however, is their carne en su jugo, with flank steak that has been boiled in a tomatillo concoction until tender, and paired with bacon, pinto beans, and peppers for a nourishing elixir.

    3721 E. Anaheim St. Long Beach, CA 90804. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 45, and 46 - "Anaheim/Mira Mar" or Long Beach Transit Line 131 - "Redondo/Anaheim."

    Chiang Rai's Khao Soi. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Chiang Rai - Khao Soi

    This Michelin-mentioned Northern Thai spot gets a lot of love, and deservedly so. Solely through the quality of their star dish, they’ve managed to add “khao soi” to the vernacular of the regular Long Beachian. What is khao soi? It’s a bowl of soft and crispy egg noodles swimming together in an intensely flavorful red curry. Get it with the Thai sausage sai uao and you’re in for one of the best meals you’ll experience. 

    3832 E. Anaheim St. Long Beach, CA 90804. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 45, and 46 - "Anaheim/Mira Mar" or Long Beach Transit Line 131 - "Redondo/Anaheim."

    Crystal Thai Cambodian's Nom P’jok. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Crystal Thai Cambodian - Nom P’jok

    Cambodian cuisine and Long Beach have a long history together. The city has the largest population of Cambodians outside of the country itself, which contributes to a wealth of Cambodian food options within the city. Crystal Thai Cambodian stands out as having some of the best traditional eats. In particular, their nom p’jok, comprised of thick rice vermicelli noodles paired with a verdant catfish broth, is bright, effusing aromas of lemongrass and galangal with every bite. 

    1165 E. 10th St. Long Beach, CA 90813. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Line 71 - "Alamitos/10th" or Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 45, and 46 - "Anaheim/Orange."

    Dan Modern Chinese's Xiaolongbao. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Dan Modern Chinese - Xiaolongbao

    Xiaolongbao is a bit of a stretch in the soup category, even though each of these steamed dumplings are ready to burst with a luscious broth. Dan Modern Chinese serves a range of these baozi, with the pork and crab variety being a particularly popular order. I’m a big fan of the original pork baozi, which is an incredible treat when accompanied with some fresh ginger and black vinegar.

    6460 E. Pacific Coast Hwy. Long Beach, CA 90803. Closest transit lines and stop: OC Bus Line 1 and Long Beach Transit Lines 121 or 171 - "Pacific Coast Highway/2nd" or Long Beach Transit Line 131 - "Marina/2nd."

    El Pollo Imperial's Aguadito de Pollo. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    El Pollo Imperial - Aguadito de Pollo

    El Pollo Imperial is a Peruvian restaurant that’s nestled within the shell of an old KFC, and still relies on the drive thru window for much of its orders. For every meal you order here, you get a complimentary side of this deep green chicken soup, also known as aguadito de pollo. The herb-tinged chicken broth is permeated with peas, carrots, rice, and chunks of bone-in chicken. Squeeze a bit of lime and this soup becomes more than just the opening act to your meal. 

    5991 Atlantic Ave. Long Beach, CA 90805. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Line 61 - "Atlantic/60th" or Long Beach Transit Line 192 - "Atlantic/South."

    The Eldo's Six Way IPA Chili. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    The Eldo - Six Way IPA Chili

    The Eldo is a traditional American steakhouse and sports bar with a splash of South African influence. They’re one of the go-to spots in the city for viewing football and rugby matches, so naturally they do the one thing that needs to be done well for a sports enthusiastic crowd: chili. Theirs is a robust and meaty stew that’s savory, spiced, and pairs well with an ice cold beer.

    3014 N. Studebaker Rd. Ste C Long Beach, CA 90808. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 102, 104, and 173 - "Studebaker/Spring."

    Gemmae Bake Shop's Sinigang. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Gemmae Bake Shop - Sinigang

    Gemmae has been a Filipino staple for 30 years in Westside Long Beach. Though they’re primarily known for their baked goods, they also have a section dedicated to take out meals including arroz caldo, pancit, sisig, bicol express, and chicken adobo. Sinigang is one of my favorites. It’s made with pork short ribs, various vegetables, and a tamarind-infused broth. This tangy soup is best when consumed with a warm bowl of white rice.

    1356 W. Willow St. Long Beach, CA 90810. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 101, 102, 103, and 104 - "Willow/Easy."

    Grilled Fraiche's Believe Stew. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Grilled Fraiche - Believe Stew

    This place is an underrated gem and has Carribean-inspired bites serving items such as braised oxtails, shrimp-and-grits, and Jamaican patties. The signature dish, however, is their "Believe Stew," comprised of beans that have been simmered in a broth with a splash of coconut milk, resulting in a deeply nutty and subtly sweet experience.

    2210 N. Bellflower Blvd. Long Beach, CA 90815. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 91, 92, 93, 94, and 172 - "Bellflower/Stearns."

    Hironori Craft Ramen's Tonkotsu Ramen. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Hironori Craft Ramen - Tonkotsu Ramen

    Ramen needs no introduction. This Japanese favorite has become one of the most popular noodle soups in the zeitgeist of modern cuisine. Hironori’s tonkotsu broth is made with pork bones that have been simmering for 24 hours, resulting in an unctuous broth that coats the tongue in a rich pork flavor. When consumed with their superbly bouncy noodles, it becomes obvious why this place has received a Michelin mention. 

    610 E. Carson St. Long Beach, CA 90807. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 61, 101, and 103 - "Carson/Atlantic."

    Jongewaard’s Bake n Broil French Onion Soup. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Jongewaard’s Bake n Broil - French Onion Soup

    This classic American diner might be Long Beach’s busiest restaurant. And for good reason. Since 1965, they have been consistently slinging American-style breakfasts, freshly baked pies, and comforting soups without pause. Their soups, across the board, are incredible, with the French onion soup being my go-to. It is decadent—the broth is bright from the wine, the cheese is oozing, and the croutons add a nice soggy crunch.

    3697 Atlantic Ave. Long Beach, CA 90807. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 61, 101, and 103 - "Atlantic/37th."

    Nick's on 2nd's San Francisco Cioppino. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Nick’s on 2nd - San Francisco Cioppino

    This Italian-American stew famously originated in San Francisco. Nick’s version comes stuffed with shrimp, salmon, sea bass, mussels, and little-neck clams. The broth is full-bodied, with a briny flavor, and each ingredient lends a nice textural thrill to every bite, allowing you to sop up every last drop with a slice of sourdough.

    4901 2nd St. Long Beach, CA 90803. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 121 and 131 - "2nd/Park."

    Northern Cafe's Beef Noodle Soup. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Northern Cafe - Beef Noodle Soup

    This particular beef noodle soup hails from Taiwan, with variations found throughout East and Southeast Asia. It’s comprised of braised beef, bok choy, and noodles swimming in a dark beef broth. The predominant flavors are soy sauce and beef, balanced by the understated earthiness of the noodles.

    4911 E. 2nd St. Long Beach, CA 90803. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 121 and 131 - "2nd/Park."

    The Ordinarie's Beef and Barley Soup. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    The Ordinarie - Beef and Barley Soup

    The Ordinarie is a gastropub with a throwback aesthetic inspired by early American taverns. Though simple, their beef and barley soup is exquisite. The mirepoix, beef, and barley pervading every spoonful with savory comfort in this warming delight.

    210 The Promenade N. Long Beach, CA 90802. Closest Metro lines and stop: Metro A Line - "1st Street Station" or Bus Line 232 - "Long Beach/3rd."

    Panxa Cocina's Hatch Chile Corn Chowder. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Panxa Cocina - Hatch Chile Corn Chowder

    Panxa Cocina's menu is heavily inspired by the cuisine of the American Southwest, with a focus on New Mexico. Though locally known for their pozole, I’m partial to the hatch chile corn chowder. This creamy soup is very corn forward, with a subtle sweetness and grounded heat. The addition of tortilla strips on top adds a nice textural crunch that elevates the entire encounter.

    3937 E. Broadway, Long Beach, CA 90803. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 111 and 112 - "Broadway/Termino."

    Phnom Penh Noodle Shack's Khmer Rice Porridge. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Phnom Penh Noodle Shack - Khmer Rice Porridge

    This Cambodian restaurant is widely known for their titular dish, the Phnom Penh noodles. Their rice porridge is equally tasty, with rice that has been boiled in chicken broth to a delicate texture. It is served alongside various cuts of chicken and pork meats, and small cubes of pork blood. Top this dish off with sambal chili paste, fermented soy beans, and a squeeze of lime juice and you’re in for a culinary adventure. 

    1644 Cherry Ave. Long Beach, CA 90813. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 21, 22, 23, 171, 172, 173, 174, and 175 - "Pacific Coast Highway/Cherry."

    Pho Hong Phat - Pho

    Pho is probably the most recognizable Vietnamese recipe, with Pho Hong Phat being Long Beach's favorite destination to get it. Though it’s no Pho 79 (a James Beard-awarded pho spot in neighboring Orange County), Pho Hong Phat sets the bar high with a clean beef broth bearing perfectly soft rice noodles. Be sure to set aside a small sauce bowl with sriracha and hoisin to dip your proteins in. 

    3243 E. Anaheim St. Long Beach, CA 90804. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 45, 46, and 131 - "Anaheim/Redondo."

    Rivera’s on 7th's Pozole Rojo. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Rivera’s on 7th - Pozole Rojo

    Rivera’s is the spot that regularly comes up when people talk about pozole. The red variation of this traditional Mexican soup is strewn with bits of pork and hominy, infused with red chiles, and accompanied by shredded cabbage, limes, and onions. Rivera’s executes this dish perfectly, creating a carousel of flavors and textures for a proper treat when you’re under the weather.

    2901 E. 7th St. Long Beach, CA 90804. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 91, 92, 93, and 94 - "7th/Orizaba."

    Roe Seafood's Clam Chowder. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Roe Seafood - Clam Chowder

    Roe Seafood, as it’s name implies, is a seafood restaurant located in the Belmont Shore area of Long Beach. One of their most popular dishes is their clam chowder, which eschews overpowering ingredients such as bacon to allow the cream and clams to shine. It’s creamy, rich, and subtle in all of the right ways. 

    5374 2nd St. Long Beach, CA 90803. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 121 and 131 - "2nd/Santa Ana."

    Sal’s Gumbo Shack's Louisiana Gumbo. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Sal’s Gumbo Shack - Louisiana Gumbo

    Sal’s Gumbo shack is located in both Bixby Knolls and North Long Beach, with a focus on Cajun and Creole Cuisine and gumbo being one of their star dishes. Their gumbo is comprised of a dark roux-based broth strewn with bits of andouille sausage, chicken, crab, and shrimp poured over white rice. The end result is the definition of comfort food, every bite enveloping your palate in a deep blanket of Southern flavor. 

    4470 California Pl. Long Beach, CA 90807. Closest transit line and stop: Long Beach Transit Line 61 - "Atlantic/45th."

    6148 Long Beach Blvd W Long Beach, CA 90805. Closest transit line and stop: Long Beach Transit Line 51 - "Long Beach/Harcourt."

    Selva - Sancocho

    Selva is a Pan-Latin restaurant with a heavy focus on Colombian cuisine. As with nearly every culture, Colombia also has a favorite chicken soup. Sancocho is a standout, as the soup carries potato, yucca, plantain, and corn within its terrain. It’s served with avocado, rice, and arepas, and it's incredible.

    4137 E. Anaheim St. Long Beach, CA 90804. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 45, and 46 - "Anaheim/Roswell" or Long Beach Transit Lines 111 and 112 - "Ximeno/Anaheim."

    Sesame Dinette's Beef Bourguignon. by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Sesame Dinette - Beef Bourguignon

    Sesame Dinette is a Vietnamese restaurant that displays many French colonial-inspired items on their menu, including beef Bourgingnon. This thick beef stew has a deep red wine flavor that’s punctuated by the sweetness of onions, carrots, and tomato. It’s paired with barbari bread, Sesame Dinette’s own spin on this French classic. 

    1750 Pacific Ave. Unit B, Long Beach, CA 90813. Closest transit lines and stop: Metro A Line - "Pacific Coast Highway Station" or Long Beach Transit Lines 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, and 182 - "Pacific Coast Highway/Pacific."

    Sura Korean BBQ's Sundubu Jjigae. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Sura Korean BBQ - Sundubu Jjigae

    Sundubu Jjigae, also known as tofu soup, is made with soft tofu sitting in a bubbling cauldron of gochujang-infused broth. It has become one of my favorite late night meals, as it’s not only tasty on its own, but also comes with a whole host of banchan. Sura executes this dish well, serving several versions, ranging from kimchi to seafood variations. 

    621 Atlantic Ave. Long Beach, CA 90802. Closest transit lines and stop: Metro A Line - "5th Street Station", Metro Bus Line 232 - "Long Beach/6th", or Long Beach Transit Lines 61, 91, 92, 93, and 94 - "6th/Atlantic."

    Tasty Food to Go's Panang Curry. Photo by James Tir for L.A. TACO.

    Tasty Food to Go - Panang Curry

    Thai spots are a dime a dozen here in Long Beach, so it’s hard to stand out—and even tougher when Chiang Rai carries all of the accolades. However, Tasty Food to Go persists as a local "if you know you know" spot. It’s a cash-only joint that sits inside of a tiny house, serving some of the best and simplest Thai food in town. If you’re looking for pad thai, pad see ew, or panang curry—this is where you need to go.

    2015 E 10th St. Long Beach, CA 90804. Closest transit lines and stop: Long Beach Transit Lines 21, 22, and 23 - "Cherry/10th."

    Uncle Fung Borneo Eatery - Laksa Mee

    Uncle Fung is the only place that serves Indonesian, Malaysian, and Singaporean cuisine in Long Beach, and though they showcase just a glimpse of those cuisines, the dishes they do serve are fantastic. Their laksa mee is Singaporean-inspired and swimming with egg noodles, marinated egg, shrimp, fish cake, fried tofu, and corn in a laksa curry broth. The broth itself is an intense presentation of briny, sweet, creamy, and savory elements in every bite.

    5716-A E 7th St. Long Beach, CA 90803. Closest transit lines and stop: Metro Bus Line 577, Long Beach Transit Lines 41, 45, 91, 92, 93, 94, 121, and 171, OC Bus Lines 1, 50, and 60 - "7th/Channel."

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