It happens every evening. Families all over Lake Highlands turn to ask each other, “What’s for dinner?” And all over the neighborhood, folks shrug their shoulders and answer, “I dunno.”

Lake Highlands Advocate asked community leaders to share their favorite dishes from local eateries. Whether you’re looking to dine in, take out or nosh on the patio, here are the go-tos from your neighbors constantly on the go.

Lonnie Jordan, Coach of the 7-6A champion Lake Highlands High School football team

The #5 at Keller’s

Nineteen games ago, every Friday during the season, I began eating the #5 with a side of fries and a Diet Coke from Keller’s. In that span we are 17 and 2. It’s to the point now, where the coaches won’t let me eat anything else on Fridays in the Fall.

6537 E. Northwest Hwy near Abrams

Dr. Jeannie Stone, Richardson ISD Superintendent

Mama’s Chicken Tacos at Mi Cocina

I’ve been going to the Mi Cocina at Skillman and Walnut Hill since it was located where the CVS is now. There’s no better chips and salsa, and this location brings back lots of memories from when my husband and I were first married. And it’s also delicious!

7215 Skillman Street

Zach Garza, Executive Director of Forerunner Mentoring

Braised Beef Short Rib Taco at Resident Taqueria

For me, it doesn’t get any better than Resident Taqueria. The unique atmosphere mixed with Chef Andrew Savoie’s humor makes it not only a great place to eat, but a neighborhood staple. I go with my go-to order; the Braised Beef Short Rib Taco and whatever taco sounds good from their brown-paper menu that is hanging on the wall. The tacos are amazing, but for me, their chips and salsa is the best in town. And be sure to wash it down with a bottled Coke, which adds the final touch to an already amazing meal. When I go to Resident, I think of all the locals in LH. I always see at least one or two people that I know. Andrew has created the taqueria equivalent to Cheers; it’s a place where everybody knows your name. 

9661 Audelia at Walnut Hill

Adam McGough, Deputy Mayor Pro Tem of Dallas

44 Farms Flat Iron Steak Frites at Cedar & Vine

I love our Lake Highlands restaurants. My favorite often depends on the day. If I have to pick one dish, I will go with the 44 Farms Flat Iron Steak Frites from Cedar and Vine. This spot has so many memories from Highlands Cafe to Neighbors and now Cedar and Vine. I will never forget celebrating with so many friends and family on the patio on our first election night. But you gotta walk down to Shady’s and grab a Funfetti Shake with the kids and order some Salt Sweets from Carrie before your night-cap at Oak Highlands Brewery. We have some great spots in this community where good food brings us all together.  #ALLinD10 #LoveYourNeighbor 

9661 Audelia at Walnut Hill

Karen Clardy, President of the RISD School Board

Ceviche De Camarones at Taco Diner

This is an easy question for me – the Ceviche De Camarones at Taco Diner. It reminds me of happy times in Mexico at the beach, and it is also a healthy Mexican food option. Win, win!

7150 Skillman at Walnut Hill

Joe Duffield, Coach of LHHS boys’ basketball

Conchiglie a Modo Mio and Trenette alla MoMo at MoMo Italian Kitchen

We used to have fairly regular family dinners at MoMo, dating back to their old location on Forest Lane. We have dined at MoMo since around 2003 or 2004. They’ve always made authentic and very good Italian food. I really have two favorite dishes there, it’s hard to pick just one: the Conchiglie a Modo Mio and the Trenette alla MoMo. 

The Conchiglie pasta dish uses a shell pasta and has a good combination of chicken, pork and salame mixed in with a very good red sauce. The Trenette is a very good dish using more traditional spaghetti noodles with some shrimp and salmon mixed in.

This particular restaurant’s version of these dishes is special, because of the high quality ingredients and homemade pasta. It is authentic Italian food and always prepared just right. This would be my favorite local dish and place to eat, because the food is delicious and we have many great memories of family dinners at that restaurant. We’ve always had a great dining experience at MoMo.

8989 Forest Lane near Greenville Avenue

Amy Timmerman, President of 100 Women of Lake Highlands

Guacamole with Mushroom Tacos at Resident Taqueria

Y’all, the guac has peas! Delish! Of course, with a Paloma as well! The first time I ever ate there, I ordered this and have been ordering the exact same thing ever since. I love that Resident Taqueria feels like a local institution, the staff is always friendly, and the service is top notch. The owners are also long time LH residents, like so many other Lake Highlands businesses.

9661 Audelia at Walnut Hill

Bronwyn Jefferson, President of Lake Highlands Junior Women’s League

Atlantic Salmon at Cedar & Vine

My husband [LHHS 2006 graduate Jared Jefferson] and I first ate there the first week it opened. We were pumped to hear about a fancy-ish date night restaurant in LH.

I love their salmon because it’s delicious (the sauce is so yummy) and because it pairs nicely with my favorite, the CV Old Fashioned, literally hands down the best Old Fashioned I’ve ever had. The beurre blanc sauce makes this salmon special. The fish is perfectly cooked, and the sauce makes the dish ten times more delicious. Paired with the broccolini, this is so good – it makes my mouth water just thinking about it.

It’s also a special place, because it’s the one place my husband and I would frequent for our date nights. It’s also great for girls’ nights – overall just anytime you can get a little dolled up and don’t want to go far. Great food, amazing atmosphere, superb service and fantastic food!

9661 Audelia at Walnut Hill

Jill Goad, Assistant Director of Community Ministries, Feed Lake Highlands/LHUMC

Chicken and Dumplings at RM 12:20 Bistro

This is my go-to comfort food to make, serve and eat. My grandparents lived on a ranch and had chickens, so I grew up eating my granny’s dish – and sometimes she changed it up a bit to become dove and dumplings. My dad always had a big pot of it ready when we went to visit him. It has always been a standard in my home. The first time I had RM 1220’s version it did not disappoint!  We picked it up curbside during COVID and I enjoyed every bite. It was a very special treat after a long day at work. What makes their version special – the celery and carrots are little bitty and still crispy, the soupy broth is savory and the dumplings are spectacular. Erin Willis’ recipe definitely tops mine, my dad’s and my grandmother’s!  I’m dreaming about my next visit to RM 1220.  Don’t show me a menu – just give me chicken and dumplings.

9850 Walnut Hill at Audelia

Jean Krone Bono, RISD Trustee

Risotto ai Funghi at MoMo Italian Kitchen

We have been going to MoMo’s since long before it moved to the new location. My young wiggly sons used to be highly entertained by the fish tanks in the old locale. Never had better risotto than there, and the owners treat you like friends. We often go there with some friends who started out as business colleagues 25 years ago. They are experts: they go to Italy multiple times per year, and they swear this is best in Dallas. I agree. 

8989 Forest Lane near Greenville Avenue

Fran Beazley, President of Lake Highlands Women’s League

Beef Fajitas at Mariano’s

For over 6 years my daughters, my sister and I have had a weekly, standing date at Mariano’s.  This little tradition has survived my girls going to college, their careers, their boys and Covid.  Even when the world was shut down, we adapted and turned our weekly dinner into a curbside, parking lot party.

All this to say, I have probably eaten everything on the Mariano’s menu.  Everything is delicious, but I have never had better beef fajitas anywhere.  And as a bonus you can have one of Dallas’ best margaritas, the Mariano.

6300 Skillman Street

Regina Harris, RISD Trustee

Cheeseburger and fries at Shady’s Burgers and Brewhaha

When it’s a “Cheat Day” for me, I love a Shady’s cheeseburger with lettuce and cheese only and a side of Shady’s fries. I’ve been visiting this fun LH spot since I met there for a PTA meeting four years ago. The food is hot, fresh and delicious, and I typically go with good friends who I have so much fun with. The burgers are always juicy and just the right size – not too big and not too small. The fries are fresh and hot with just enough salt. And I stop off at Andy’s Custard for dessert.

9661 Audelia at Walnut Hill

Gale Lewis, Exchange Club of Lake Highlands Past President

Slice of Italian sausage and mushroom at Primo Brothers Pizza

You always know things are going well for the Exchange Club of Lake Highlands when the president treats the board to fried raviolis and calamari at the back room board meeting!

9310 Forest Lane at Abrams

Christie Myers, D10 Planning Commissioner

Too many to choose

This is TOUGH! I love the fried Brussels sprouts at Cedar and Vine. I love the pimento cheese at RM 12:20 Bistro. I love the queso at Taco Joint. I love the cheeseburger at Jake’s.

Carol Toler, Advocate contributor

Burnt End Fried Rice at Monkey King Noodle Company

Noodle King has only been open for two months in Lake Highlands, but they’ve already captured my heart with their hot soup and warm noodles. Their fried rice is my favorite, with jalapenos, fried egg and chunks of burnt end brisket from Terry Black’s in Deep Ellum. Perfect.

6770 Abrams at Skillman