Best of Bali Restaurants
Bali offers a wide selection of meal options that a unified by their great flavors and value.
hot take: Bali has meals at all price points to satisfy most palates across a wide range of cuisines...Ubud especially was a treat. (4.0 stars)
pro tip: Some of the best meals we had were in empty restaurants (and we had some marginal meals in busy ones), so be confident in your research to get the best meals.
After burning out in Thailand on repetitive meals in just 2 weeks, we were nervous about spending 2 months in Indonesia (after all, there is only so much fried rice you can eat without screaming). However, we ate much better in Bali than we expected to (check our waistlines) and Matt even found a new appreciation for vegetarian foods. Now food in Bali is not 'super cheap' by Asian standards; however, by western standards being able to get a deliciously prepared meal with a main, a split appetizer or dessert, and a fresh fruit smoothie or beer for $5-10 each (our normal Bali budget) is a bargain. In general, Western food was at the higher end of that range and Southeast Asian staples were about half as much. Note: we also tried cooking for ourselves for a while and found that the prices at the grocery store (if you include the spices, oils, etc) were almost the same per meal as just buying food at a restaurant (this was especially true of dairy products or Western foods)...so after our brief self-prep phase, we let the locals do the cooking! Further note: Most beers/smoothies cost ~$2 each, so just drinking water could cut your cost significantly. In general, while meals in Bali are generally fairly healthy and of a high quality, there were significant differences in taste/flavor without meaningful differences in price. So it pays to do your research!! That said, we're here to help you with our top restaurant picks from our time in Bali. So throw a leg over your virtual scooter and let's motor through our favorite restaurants of Bali.
CANGGU: On the outskirts of Canggu overlooking peaceful rice fields, Red Salt Cafe is located in an adorably shabby-chic bungalow and was our introduction to the high quality and reasonable prices of Bali food. We were especially blown away with the burgers that were world class great despite being just $5.
UBUD: Having spent most of our life in the American Southwest (as well as frequent visits to Mexico), we can declare that this taco joint in Bali's heartland delivered some of the tastiest tacos we have ever had. This was the only place that we went back to twice in our month in Ubud (which really tells you something). While the meat (beef and pork) tacos were delicious, the stars of the show were the veggie tacos (especially the jackfruit taco, that tasted better than most pork carnitas we have ever had). Go on Taco Tuesday and you get a free shot of tequila (per person) with your meal (which we had them pour into some delicious handmade margaritas that were perfect and not that pre-made sweet crap you so often get).
UBUD: The (relatively) difficult journey to find this hidden gem was well-rewarded with tasty food and a killer sunset view. While it took us two tries to find this place (tip: look a the directions REALLY carefully), we can see why people make the trek to the outskirts of Ubud for this fancier/organic take on Indonesian staples. The sunset pictures speak for themselves, but for food we recommend the Seven Grains platter and frankly any of the smoothies would be delicious.
UBUD/GIANYAR: With waterfall views to die for from a simple Indonesian warung that offers zero preview from the road, we were so happy that Kelly had discovered this gem. Located within walking distance from the popular tourist site of Goa Gajah, Layana Warung is built into the side of a very steep cliff and overlooks a jungle waterfall as well as the river below. Wifi was surprisingly quick and the food was not as 'tourist priced' as you would imagine for a place with a view like this. We only had fruit drinks (which were tasty and well priced) and being at this restaurant actually impressed us more than being at Goa Gajah!
UBUD: At the outskirts of Ubud with amazing views overlooking the Ridge Walk, The Elephant's real star was its delicious foods and powerful value. With its menu that tilts towards re-imagined Italian foods, everything we ate was on point. We especially loved the mushroom polenta and the raviolis. The green smoothie was one of Kelly's favorites from the whole trip!
UBUD: Vegan food so good that you won't even care (if you are carnivores like us), Kismet helped open Matt up to the flavors that could be unleashed even if no animals were harmed in the making of his dinner. Best described as a fusion restaurant with something for anyone, the Haloumi Burger was a tasty monster and even the samosas offered a spicy zip. Kismet's decor was also on point and made no apologies for its vegan roots...heck, this place was even cool enough to have its own Soundcloud mix.
UBUD: Our cheapest meal on the list (we stuffed ourselves for less than $3 each), Warung Garasi was our favorite Indonesian food joint. The Gado Gado veggies with peanut sauce were particularly amazing as was the pricing of the beer (same price as in the grocery store). Also interesting was the decor which was made to look like a scooter machine shop and included old Vespas turned into bar seating.
UBUD: Located in the heart of Ubud behind a door that would be at home in the Shire, Clear Cafe offers good healthy food and tasty smoothies. Kelly met up with a group of traveling lady nomads here and was very impressed with the quality and service of the place...and the decor is truly beyond, especially the river that flows through the downstairs.
UBUD: Traditional Korean in the jungle? Yes, please! Roots delivers the authentic flavors of Korea in a beautiful lounge that feels spa-like. A hike to the outskirts of Ubud rewarded us with dumplings, bibimbap and even kimchi that helped break up the fried rice we had become used to. The star of our meal came at the end, a homemade carrot cake that was worth every calorie. We would visit again just for another bite of that cake! A lovely couple runs this newly opened restaurant and it was a great place to connect with people from all over the world.
UBUD: Featuring our favorite restaurant views in Ubud mixed with delicious Indian food, Cafe Pomegranate was a destination as much as a restaurant. Set in the rice fields North of Ubud, go at sunset to maximize the views...but stay for the wonderfully prepared Indian/Indonesian fusion foods. After sunset, the bats come out to hunt in the fields (which is magic to watch)...but don't forget a flashlight as it gets really dark for the drive back.
UBUD: On the Southside of Ubud, Buddha Bowl offers exactly what you think it does...delicious buddha bowls. We passed a lovely early evening rainstorm sheltered in this restaurant and enjoyed the spring rolls and salad (as well as a fresh coconut). The rainstorm also scared out three cockroaches in the dining room, so you will have to give them the benefit of the Bali doubt on cleanliness.
UBUD: A traditional Indonesian restaurant on Ubud's west side, Warung Mendez helped reinforce the lesson that Bali spicy is WAY spicier than what we are used to back in the U.S. (and we eat spicy foods all the time). We should have known something was afoot as we saw the waitress's eyes getting wider as we spooned the spicy mix onto our noodles and rice...but (as testament to our stubbornness, and later gastrointestinal regret) we finished our plates and used the very tasty traditional juices to put out the fire. The food was very nicely done (just make sure you don't spice it up too much)!
UBUD: A Mediterranean restaurant that really delivered the goods with food that transported us far from the jungles of Bali. Set in a rough-hewn cafe painted white to invoke the Greek coast, Nostimo's fresh seafood and kebabs were simply prepared, but particularly delightful after a few days of Nasi Goreng in a row. We especially loved the octopus salad appetizer and the romantic swing out front.
UBUD: Proving that anywhere can be Paris, Cafe du Monyet delivers French flavors and ambiance from the center of Bali while overlooking a rice field. How is that even possible (and where did they get all the French decor items)...we have no idea, but it WORKS! The food was also a welcome European treat (right down to the Dijon mustard and ravioli).
ULUWATU: Specializing in 'Superfood Burgers', Om Burger delivers big taste with unique flavor combinations to satisfy meat and veggie lovers alike. From high end offerings like Wagyu beef to fanciful creations like the nasi goreng burger, the food is a great East-meets-West treat. This was the only place that we went back to twice in our week in Uluwatu (which really tells you something). We recommend the slider sampler platter (it was big enough for 2 of us to split). We also enjoyed the fruit smoothies as well as the views (and breeze) at this second story location with fast wifi. This place was also written up by Lonely Planet (if you are in to that kind of validation).