Guru’s Top 5: Halal Spots to Celebrate Eid in Orlando with Family

Although Ramadhan is still in full swing (one week to go), some are already looking to the night sky for the crescent moon. Be patient it will come, Inshallah. In the meantime, while you fast and do good deeds, why not start your Eid day planning. Last year for Eid, I focused on the formal upscale dining experience. Here is that list for reference: TOP 5: Celebrate Eid in Style at these Orlando Halal Restaurants . But this year with all that has happened to the Muslim community across the world, it’s time to cherish family. This year, I’ll focus on a more informal experience so that you can find restaurants that focus on the family dining experience. I’ll highlight spots that are capable of providing for the young and old in the family with their dining area, menus and other amenities to make the experience more enjoyable. Basically for this Eid list we will look at family-oriented environments.

With the hectic schedules, hopefully this list will inspire you to pick a nice Halal restaurant where everyone can enjoy eating and not worry about doing the dishes.

1. Charcoal Zyka

Located just off I-528, this restaurant is close to International Drive and Universal Studios and Sea World. The menu is divided into an Indian and BBQ half, which is great for large families who want to try different things. The dining area can accommodate large dining parties and the service is consistently courteous. The dishes are served in larger portions which can be shared amongst family members creating for a group dining experience. A very popular item amongst guests is the rotisserie style Portuguese Chicken with hot sauce. They also have some creative twists on the classical burger, like the Chapli Kabob Burger and are on my TOP 5 Halal Burger spots for Orlando. There is ample parking in front of the restaurant.

2. Oh My Gyro (OMG)

While it is a Halal fast-food spot, it is far from the typical fast-food experience. While Halal Cart food is the core of their menu, they are constantly adding new tasty items to the menu based on customer feedback and requests. While my favorite dish is the Halal Cart food with an unhealthy amount of white sauce, they do offer other tempting dishes like mishkaki (East African barbequed beef cubes on a skewer) and Shish tawook. The large dining tables are ideal for large families to eat together. Although it is a counter service restaurant, the staff is always friendly and helpful making you feel welcome. Along those lines, they also offer a prayer space and have baby changing tables for those that need them. It is located in Longwood just north of Orlando and there is parking spaces in front of the restaurant.

Oh My Gyro
Lots of choices at Oh My Gyro for Eid Celebration including Mishkaki and Shish Tawok

3. Chaat House

As they describe on their website, they want to “give the customer lots of unique dishes all under one roof”. Their menu is expansive covering Western, Middle-Eastern, Indopakistani and Chinese dishes. It is a rather popular spot on holidays for both locals and visitors to the city. Eid is usually no exception. Dishes are served in family portions making it fun and easy to share and also reasonably priced. Yet, when it is busy the food and service quality can suffer. But, if you can overlook that, you’ll have a great time selecting from their famous desi deserts. On Eid, calories don’t count so be sure to have a Gulam Jaman or Jalebi (both variations of fried sugar dough in honey syrup), or both.  Plenty of parking in front and it isn’t too far from I-Drive, Universal Studios, Sea World and other touristy attractions.

4. Zaman Cuisine

This is one of the newest Halal restaurant to hit the Orlando food scene located of I-Drive. They offer Middle-Eastern dishes with a twist. My favorite dish is the Mixed platter. It is a sampler dish of all their grilled meats and shawarma and is reasonably healthy. It is beautifully presented and can comfortably feed 4 people to their hearts desire. The owners and staff are very welcoming making you feel like part of their family and they really take pleasure in feeding you. While the dining area is small, they can arrange it to accommodate larger parties if they aren’t too busy. It’s also a great spot for a fancy dinner with your significant other on a special occasion, like Valentine’s Day. It can be a little pricey (especially if you do the fresh juice drinks, which I highly recommend you try), but it is well justified given the overall experience. There is free parking at the rear of the plaza. UPDATE: as of 6/19, there have been some changes, please click here for my latest review.

I heart Food
I heart Food, especially on Eid. Mixed platter from Zaman Cuisine

5. Friendly’s New York Sytle Pizza

While an unlikely choice for an Eid gathering, the large dining space makes for good spot for large families to gather. While primarily a pizza based menu, they do offer other fast food item for variety. However, I definitely recommend the pizza as it is so good and even the most old school traditional eaters will enjoy it. It is located North of Orlando, but is conveniently located near several mosques including the beautiful Masjid Al-Hayy. There is plenty of parking in front and the owner is always welcoming.

Buffalo Chicken Pizza with some white sauce for good measure

Ramadhan is a time of fasting and sacrifice and Eid is the culmination of that effort. On Eid day all Muslims want to celebrate and enjoy that accomplishment with family and friends. Hopefully, this list will help with planning your function. It’s best to call ahead to confirm their hours and make reservations for your party.

Eid Mubarak!

Any other suggestions, let me know in the comments below. Please share this post with one family member or friend and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Twitter for the latest on the Halal Food Scene in Orlando and other great cities in Florida.

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