Hot pot is one of the ultimate comfort foods, especially as temperatures slowly begin to cool. Delicious as well as customizable and interactive, hot pot meals feature a variety of meat, seafood, noodles, and vegetables cooked in boiling broth, often in tabletop cauldrons. Representing Taiwanese, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean styles of hot pot, menus range from a la carte ordering to all-you-can-eat. Not all hot pot restaurants are the same, so here’s a guide to what you’ll find around San Diego.Read More
Where to Dive Into Bubbling Cauldrons of Hot Pot in San Diego
Dunk into Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese, and Chinese-style hot pots around town.
YinTang Spicy Hot Pot
The second location for Yintang Hot Pot opened in Mira Mesa after establishing the first location in the Convoy District. The formula is the same: build the ingredients in a bowl for your hot pot from a cold buffet and then hand it to the cashier to be weighed for pricing. The kitchen staff separates the ingredients for cooking in various pots and delivers everything back to your table in one delicious soup.
In Mira Mesa, this family-owned Japanese-style hot pot restaurant offers all-you-can-eat meats like Angus beef belly and pork collar in a choice of ten soup bases, including spicy Tokyo. The extensive hot and cold buffet bar offers karaage, Japanese curry, and fried rice in addition to veggies. Don’t forget to indulge in the popular bingsu snow bar dessert bar.
The Japanese restaurant offers all-you-can-eat hot pot with popular broth styles like shabu shabu or sweet sukiyaki. Along with the cold buffet bar and select highlights like Kurobuta pork shoulder, the menu includes specialties like beef shabu curry and cold pork udon salad for no additional charge.
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Haidilao Hotpot San Diego
This Westfield UTC hot pot chain features tasty, top-notch ingredients as well as entertainment, with performers who hand-pull noodles tableside and entertain with a Beijing opera dance. Try the shrimp paste as well as the premium meats, which are brought to the table by a robot.
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Mongolian Hot Pot
This hot pot restaurant, formerly affiliated with the popular Mongolian chain Little Sheep, does a more traditional hot pot. There are plenty of soup options, but the original is a milky broth made with mutton. Proteins lean heavily toward lamb but there is Kobe beef rib eye, as well as pork blood and intestines. Their lunch special is a bargain at $14.95.
Liuyishou Hot Pot
This Chinese hot pot chain in Convoy got its start in Chongqing in China’s Szechuan province. Its signature hot pot features a ring-shaped platter of beef and lamb that circles a hot pot broth made with premium beef tallow that melts into the mala spicy soup. Be warned that the mala spice level starts at a tongue-numbing level.
Ten Seconds Yunnan Rice Noodle
This outpost from a major Chinese restaurant chain features a DIY version of hot pot, showcasing the beloved “crossing the bridge noodle” dish. Individual hot stone pots are heated in an oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit and brought out on a tray surrounded by raw ingredients like rice vermicelli, quail egg, and a meat of your choosing. In 10 seconds (hence the name), your meal is ready.
Shabu Shabu House
This dinner-only Convoy spot features flexibility with individual pots in varying sizes, or an AYCE format where everyone in your party can sign up for the same tier. With options like prime ribeye, scallops, and shrimp balls, the soup base options include plain, sukiyaki, or Japanese curry. Veggies, rice, and noodles are included.
The Korean-style hot pot is an all-you-can-eat affair where you can choose up to three meats at a time along with a buffet of veggies and seafood. The original house soup base with seaweed and anchovy broth is popular. For a discount, go for lunch or the meatless buffet bar only.
Shancheng Lameizi Hot Pot
With headquarters in Beijing, this handsome restaurant in the Convoy District specializes in spicy Chongqing-style hot pot spiced with Szechuan peppercorns and dried chilies but it also offers milder options like milky pork bone broth. Its extensive a la carte menu includes ingredients such as shrimp paste, streaky pork, and duck blood while its all-you-can-eat sauce and snack bar features better-than-most dessert choices like fried glutinous sesame rice balls and a refreshing jelly soup.
Kanpai BBQ & Shabu
Replacing the former Boiling Passion restaurant in the Convoy District, this all-you-can-eat Japanese hot pot restaurant offers a partitioned metal bowl for two soup options, such as the sukiyaki or spicy mala mix. Choose from three wagyu meat options and quench your thirst with a beer tower.
Tabu Shabu North Park
This trendy North Park hot spot adheres to the Japanese tradition of shabu shabu with individual pots around a counter. What distinguishes this hot pot from others is the premium proteins from Snake River Farms and Double R Ranch with grass-fed and hormone-free meats. Go for the take-home porridge with leftovers, egg, and rice. They don’t take reservations so know it’ll be busier on a cooler day.