My five favorite menu items at Portillo’s


Ken Lund

Portillo's restaurant offers a variety of great menu options, and a relaxed dining atmosphere.

Portillo’s Restaurant is an American, fast-food, casual restaurant chain that specializes in Chicago-style food such as hot dogs, Maxwell Street Polish, and Italian beef. There are around 60 locations, mostly in Midwest states including Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin, but you also can find them in Arizona, California and Florida.

Since the food chain was founded in 1963 by Richard J. Portillo and Dick Portillo. it has been a very well known and popular. With a large menu, there is something to satisfy the cravings of almost any customer.

As a result, when visiting Portillo’s it often is hard to decide what to order. Menu choices include salads, burgers, hot dogs, ribs and much more. Here are my five faorite items from Portillo’s menu.

The top choice has to be the classic Portillo’s hot dog.  If you order it “with everything” it will include mustard, relish, celery salt, freshly chopped onions, sliced red ripe tomatoes, kosher pickle and sport peppers, all perfecly piled onto a steamed poppy seed bun. It is one of the best hot dogs you can get in Chicago, and it will have you craving a second after you finish the first.

My next choice from the Portillo’s menu is their burgers. The char-broiled burger is 1/3 pound of juicy, char-broiled beef with mayo, crisp lettuce, a red ripe tomato slice, sliced red onion, pickles and ketchup served on a freshly toasted old fashioned style bun. It’s another Chicago classic, and is priced reasonably at only $4.65. It is well worth the price and it is very delicious with fries and a drink.

The third best item is their Italian beef. they have three options for their beef dry, extra gravy or dipped. Dry has very little gravy, extra gravy is splashed with gravy on top, and dipped is when the beef and the French bread are dipped into the gravy whole. It is Chicago’s #1 beef and is a great option to choose from when catering. It will have everyone satisfied and leave a smile on everyone’s faces.

The fourth best item is the chopped salad. Not only is Portillo’s good with greasy food, but they also have really good salads as well. It is a great option for lunch, or if you feel like eating healthy. The salad has chopped romaine and iceberg lettuce with red cabbage and diced chicken breast, ditalini pasta, bacon, diced tomatoes, gorgonzola cheese and green onion, served with their original house dressing.

The last item on the list is Portillo’s chocolate cake, a great way to finish off any meal. Each double-layered chocolate cake is generously iced with two pounds of rich, chocolate frosting. The cakes are made every morning in each restaurant. They are sold by the slice or as a whole. It goes great with a glass of milk and will be a great dessert option after any entree.