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Kansas City Black-Owned Food Businesses You Have To Try

With small businesses struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important now more than ever to support local businesses. With Black-owned businesses in particular, supporting them is the first step toward promoting equality and ensuring your money goes to businesses that help to support Black communities. By doing so, we can all push the needle toward closing the racial wealth gap that disproportionately affects Black Americans. Besides, some of these Black-Owned businesses truly are the best spots to visit in Kansas City! Here’s a list of Kansas City Black-Owned Businesses you have to check out:

Blue Nile Cafe

Located in the River Market, Blue Nile Cafe is Kansas City’s oldest Ethiopian restaurant. With vegetarian and even vegan options, there is definitely something you’ll want to try here. Their dishes are made fresh-to-order, so if you are on a time crunch I definitely recommend calling ahead or ordering on their website. If you are unsure of what to try during your first visit, I suggest getting their Meat Combo or their Sampler Platter. Blue Nile Cafe is also perfect for a date night, so definitely keep that in mind once they allow customers to dine in.

Krit’s Recommendation: Doro Watt and Vegan Sambusa.

G’s Jamacian Quisine

Eating anything from G’s is an experience in itself. From the tender chicken in the curry chicken dish to the juicy fried plantains, you cannot go wrong with anything you buy. You can definitely make a quick stop at G’s during your commute to/from campus, as it is located right on Troost. If you love your meals spicy, don’t forget to ask G’s for some hot sauce before you leave.

Krit’s Recommendation: Curry Chicken or Oxtail, Fried Plantains and a Ting.

Gates BBQ

No list of food businesses in Kansas City is complete without mentioning a BBQ place. First opened in 1946 at 19th and Vine, Gates BBQ is one of the oldest BBQ restaurants in Kansas City. If you’re not a BBQ fan, you can still support Gates BBQ by purchasing their sauces. I personally like their ‘Extra Hot’ sauce as it adds a kick to any meal I have.

Krit’s Recommendation: Beef, Ham, Turkey or Pork on Bun with Fries.

Wings Cafe

Located right in the heart of Westport, Wings Cafe is the perfect place to stop by if you have a craving for chicken wings in the middle of the day. With over 20 wing flavors to choose from, you should be able to find the perfect wing soon enough! I definitely recommend getting their lunch specials that are available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., as they cost less than $11 and most of them come with a side and drink. Also, Wings Cafe is one of the few places that accepts Roo Bucks, so don’t forget to bring your Roo card when you visit!

Krit’s Recommendation:  Sweet Thai, Lemon Pepper and Firecracker boneless chicken wings. 


Last, but certainly not the least, we have Yogurtini. Located just a mere 5 minutes from campus, Yoguritni has been the place I’ve always visited if I needed a little pick-me-up. With rotating frozen yogurt flavors that include non-dairy and gluten-free options, the options when it comes to customizing your cup are endless! If you are on a budget, I would follow their Instagram to keep an eye out for their $5 cup days, where you can fill your cup with as much yogurt you want and add three pre-portioned topping cups for only $5.

Krit’s Recommendation: Cookies and Cream frozen yogurt with gummy bears.

I hope at least one of these businesses has made it on your list of food businesses to try next. With various options from appetizers to desserts, you’ll definitely be able to visit at least two places and make the most of a meal. For a list of more Kansas City Black-owned businesses, feel free to visit Do816’s website.

Krit is currently a senior majoring in English and Chemistry at UMKC. As the President and founder of UMKC’s chapter, she hopes her team will create content to inspire as many people as possible. Some of her favorite things include poetry, scented candles, and writing. In her spare time, she can be found taking a bubble bath with LUSH products, sipping too much coffee, and reading all about astrology.
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