Pretoria has been my home for the last 13 years. As someone who loves food, I’ve eaten a whole lot of meals around the city. Because sharing is caring, below is my top choices for delicious food and where the find the best restaurants in Pretoria, South Africa.
Best Restaurants in Pretoria
For Indian cuisine: Geet
I love the fact that there are lots of Indian restaurants popping up everywhere in Pretoria! Geet remains my top choice for the best Indian cuisine. The restaurant is elegant, the food is phenomenal and the naan bread is to die for!
Your meal starts with complimentary papadums and a trio of toppings. I always order a paneer dish, but the menu is endless so you’ll have plenty of choices. My favourite bread is the honey and coriander naan.
For local cuisine: Karoo Café
To get a taste of South African cuisine, head to Karoo Café. Try the ‘Skilpadjies’ or ‘Karoo Roosterkoek’ for breakfast. South Africans are big on red meat so if you want to taste something truly authentic, order the ‘Karoo Lamb Chops’, ‘Lamb potjie’ or the ‘Oxtail’. For dessert, I recommend the Rooibos Malva Pudding. It’s really sweet but so yummy!
The ambience of this café is great! You’ll feel like you’re in the countryside on a farm and not in the middle of Pretoria. There’s a couple of Great Danes and other animals hanging around the café.
For delicious burgers: Burger Bistro
Are you in the mood for a good old-fashioned burger and chips? Then head to Burger Bistro for the best burgers in town. The burgers are perfectly balanced and so delicious! Also, a Burger Bistro burger is so huge that it’s nearly impossible to hold it in one hand. Generous portions are always a plus for me!
There are a few locations to choose from. If you are going in the middle of the day, finding an open table shouldn’t be a problem. However, if you go for dinner, arrive early to ensure you get a table.
P.S. Vegetarians can order the Gandhi burger. You won’t see it on the menu but you can ask for it.
For fine dining: La Pentola
When it comes to fine dining, you are spoiled for choice in Pretoria. One of the best fine dining restaurants and my personal favourite is La Pentola. The food is so amazing that I had my wedding reception here.
The menu is creative and unusual with loads of local delicacies like Crocodile, Warthog and Springbok. My husband always orders a fillet. You cannot go wrong with the Bourdalaise Fillet or the KWV Fillet.
For vegetarians, you’ll have plenty of dishes to choose from (very rare in Pretoria fine dining restaurants). My favourite is the Clockwork Orange – a buttery grilled halloumi steak topped with a delicious citrus sauce and almond flakes.
Head to La Pentola for a romantic date, to celebrate a special occasion, or simply to enjoy the seriously good food.
For the best pizza: Toni’s
For the best pizza in Pretoria, go to Toni’s Fully Furnished Pizza Co. SERIOUSLY, the pizza is OUT OF THIS WORLD! A Toni pizza base is thin, light and crispy and topped with the best fresh ingredients.
Expect to see some unusual toppings on the menu. But don’t be alarmed, they go together like white on rice. My personal favourite is the ‘Cipolle’ – a tomato base topped with mozzarella, caramelised onion, brie and toasted almonds. For something ‘out there’ and very indulgent, try the ‘Salmone E Fragola’.
Pizzas come in two sizes: a pizzette (15 cm) or a pizza (33 cm). You can even go half and half if you find it difficult to choose just one pizza (only available on the 33 cm base). For the health conscious, you can ask for a Banting or Gluten Free base. Toni’s also serves a delicious House Salad and great pasta dishes.
For something different, try a dessert pizza. I highly recommended the ‘Hazelnut Dessert Pizza’. Be sure to make a reservation in advance if you want to enjoy the delicious food.
For a night out with friends: Capital Craft
Something that is definitely trending in Pretoria at the moment is craft beer. Nowadays every other bar or hangout is serving craft beers. The best place to enjoy a cold beer and tasty food is Capital Craft Beer Academy.
Capital Craft has the biggest selection of beers I have ever seen! I’m not much of a beer drinker myself, but I really enjoyed the Hazelnut Ale (Red Stone Clarens Brewery). Another popular choice is the Soweto Gold Apple Ale (Ubuntu Kraal Brewery). Both are from local breweries and definitely worth a try.
If beer isn’t your kind of thing, don’t worry. There are plenty of drinks to choose from and they even have Gin and Tonic on tap!
When it comes to food, Capital Craft serves some of the best food in Pretoria. You can’t go wrong with a burger. The BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich also comes highly recommended. There are various platters to choose from if you want to share food with friends.
Only in the mood for a snack? No problem. Order a side of fries or the Jalapeno Poppers. They are delicious!
Always packed, it’s a great place to spend time with your friends. To ensure you get a table at Capital Craft, it’s best to make a reservation ahead of time.
The best food in Pretoria isn’t limited to brick buildings. There are two fantastic markets that are definitely worth checking out.
Hazel Food Market
This outdoor market is a must for every foodie! Take a culinary trip around the world: spicy tacos from Mexico, crunchy churros from Spain, dolmades from Greece, steamed buns from Asia and of course delicious local cuisine.
With my giant sweet tooth, my favourite is the Fudge stand! Here you’ll find fudge infused with chilly or cinnamon or Turkish delights to name a few!
Come hungry and bring a lot of cash. Don’t miss the Hazel Food Market every Saturday from 08h00 to 14h00.
This market is for the early birds! The Boeremark is open every Saturday morning from 05h00 until 09h30. It’s the South African version of a farmer’s market. Here you’ll find fresh produce straight from the farm to your table. You can stock out on your groceries, but eat while you doing it!
Grab a ‘moerkoffie’ and a couple of ‘pannekoeke’ (pancakes) as you browse the market. You also have to try ‘melkkos’! It’s South African comfort food you can eat for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It’s warm, it’s got cinnamon and sugar and it’s positively yummy!
Sonja is from South Africa, born and raised. She is sharing her local tips here, but you can also connect with her on Instagram and on her blog.
The next time you’re in Pretoria, make sure you visit these restaurants and markets for delicious food! Pin it for later: