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Bossie's Kitchen is a neighborhood favorite with a farmers market-driven menu

Square and round doughnuts with various toppings including nuts, toffee, and drizzles Brioche doughnuts with flavors including chocolate and salted almond toffee, raspberry and rhubarb, summer berry and pistachio, and a Frech Cruller chocolate-pistachio donut.

Bossie’s Kitchen in Santa Barbara gets its name from its location in a landmark former dairy building that until recently had a life-size cow statue perched on the roof. Opened in 2019, the neighborhood café has become a darling of local foodies, some of whom stop in several times a week for the farmers market–driven menu, the friendly vibe, and, oh, yes, the doughnuts.

Burger with a heaping side of fries

Grass-fed burger with bacon, Manchego cheese, balsamic onions, and french fries.

At the helm are Executive Chef Lauren Herman and pastry chef Christina Olufson, both Le Cordon Bleu–trained and alums of Suzanne Goin’s James Beard Award–winning Los Angeles restaurants A.O.C. and Lucques. Herman crafts a lunch and dinner menu that lets farm-fresh ingredients shine in stepped-up comfort food dishes, such as the grilled hamburger made with grass-fed beef and topped with bacon, Manchego cheese, balsamic onions, and house-made dill pickles.

Grilled salmon on a bed of farro

Grilled salmon plate with farro, black rice, broccolini, carrots, and sunflower seed pesto.

Herman’s spot-on flavor and texture combinations are on display in dishes like the grilled salmon with sautéed farro, black rice, broccolini, carrots, and sunflower seed pesto; and the vegetarian plate featuring grilled avocado, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes with quinoa, chickpea puree, muhammara, and tzatziki. 

Korean Fried Chicken Sandwich

Korean fried chicken sandwich with sesame slaw.

The Korean fried chicken sandwich with sesame slaw and gochujang sauce packs the perfect amount of punch. Pair sandwiches or salads with sides like truffle fries with pecorino and buttermilk aioli, and baked mac-and-cheese with garlic bread crumbs. Day-of-the-week specials include the Wednesday chicken potpie that has some fans calling in the morning to reserve one.

And about those doughnuts. They sell out quickly, but Olufson’s buttermilk brioche gems, with year-round flavors such as chocolate with salted almond toffee and seasonal glazes made with farmers market fruit—think berry pistachio and raspberry rhubarb—are worth arriving early for. We wouldn’t turn down any of the cookies or cakes either. Breakfast and weekend brunch are coming soon. 

Tables inside Bossie's Kitchen

Bossie's Kitchen is a popular, quaint neighborhood café in Santa Barbara.

Best dishes at Bossie's Kitchen

Korean fried chicken sandwich, grilled salmon plate, grass-fed hamburger, chicken potpie, brioche doughnuts.

Dinner prices

Sandwiches and salads, $12–$18.50; entrées, $15.50–$26; desserts, $3–$8.50.


Closed Mondays and Tuesdays. 901 N. Milpas St., Santa Barbara; (805) 770-1700.

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