12 Best Italian Restaurants In Des Moines, IA

Choosing an excellent Italian restaurant can be difficult if you’re not familiar with Italian cuisine and culture. For instance, it’s a rule not to serve too little food in Italian cuisine.

Also, the food quality should be authentic and unequaled. If you are in Des Moines, Iowa, and you want to dine in a good Italian restaurant, check out the restaurants listed below.

Spaghetti Works

$$ | (515) 243-2195 | WEBSITE


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Established in 1974, Spaghetti Works claims to be one of the best Italian restaurants in Des Moines. It has over 700 combinations of pasta, salad, and toppings, so you can explore as much as you want.

Besides its fine decor and rich Italian cuisine, it offers free refills to customers who want.

There’s also the option of sightseeing as the restaurant is located near some of the city’s major attractions like the Capitol Building, the Science Center of Iowa, Wells Fargo Arena, etc.

In addition to its pizza, chicken, seafood, sandwich, and salad dishes, the restaurant provides vegan-friendly options and a full-service bar with a wide array of wine and cocktails.

If you’re looking to cater to many people, you could use one of their party rooms.



$$ | (515) 243-1115 | WEBSITE


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Lucca is the restaurant to go to if you’re looking to taste a 4-course Prix fixe.

The first course is a salad mix, while the second course contains traditional Italian dishes such as Gnocchi, Amatriciana, Risotto, bolognese, pasta, etc.

The third dish features steak, chicken, seafood, while the fourth is a huge dessert that’ll leave you licking your fingers.

Asides the sumptuous meals Lucca provides, the minimalist atmosphere makes you feel at home.

The inside is made of red bricks that beautifully compliments the minimalist decor, while the kitchen is located right in the middle of the restaurant for all customers to see.

If you’d love some wine or cocktails to accompany your meal, you can check out the various options at the bar.


Gusto Pizza Co.

$$ | (515) 244-8786 | WEBSITE


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One thing that makes Gusto Pizza Co. stand out in Des Moines is its specialty salads and pizzas. Unlike other restaurants that don’t pay much attention to these dishes, Gusto Pizza Co. considers them the heart of what they do.

Customers who have had their salads and pizzas always keep coming back for more. There are other Italian dishes such as mozzarella, spicy soppressata, ricotta, etc.

The restaurant was founded by Joe McConville, Tony Lemono, and Josh Holderness, who wanted to create an atmosphere where people could eat and share good times.

Asides dining in and ordering online/delivery; you can hire the services of the kitchen to cater for your outdoor events either onsite or via delivery.



$$ | (515) 248-1780 | WEBSITE


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Founded by a successful restaurateur, Chef George Formaro, Centro is a classy restaurant operating for over 20 years in Des Moines.

From salads, chicken, beef, and pork entrees, soups, pasta, pizza to cakes and seafood, the restaurant’s dishes are carefully and expertly prepared with fresh ingredients.

You can also order different meal courses online or eat in the restaurant. The atmosphere’s friendly and lively, so there’s never a dull moment around.

The restaurant is always bustling with families, couples, friends, colleagues, and business associates due to the excellent customer service and various dishes. It’s also a great place to view the city’s major hotels and conference centers.



$$$ | (515) 244-1353 | WEBSITE


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Even though the building is a Victorian mansion dated back to the 1800s, the restaurant’s cozy atmosphere and beautiful renovations will leave you stunned.

Founded by Tony Lemmo, the restaurant boasts unique Italian cuisine that is hard to find anywhere else and has a culture of using food to foster friendship among its customers. It offers various options to suit different pockets.

Its menu options include greens, cakes, soups, purees, potatoes, sweets, ice creams, whipped creams, mozzarella, gnocchi, risotto, cavatelli, etc.

There’s a wide range of Italian and American wines you can choose from. The environment is great for dining in, either alone or with your family. You can also book reservations in advance.



$$ | (515) 251-7767 | WEBSITE


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It’s hard to come by a restaurant that gives free breadsticks to its customers, but Fazoli’s does that.

Its cuisine features salads, toppings such as Italian meatballs and sausages, broccoli, roasted chicken, baked spaghetti, lasagna, ziti, and sauces from alfredo to creamy basil.

There’s a kids’ menu you can choose from for families with kids. In addition, the restaurant’s facility also accommodates kids and physically-challenged people. The customer service is great, and the food is always fresh and fast.


Noah’s Ark Restaurant

$$ | (515) 650-9366 | WEBSITE

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Rated one of the most renowned restaurants in Central Iowa, Noah’s Ark Restaurant has been in operation since 1946.

It is famous for favorites such as its Neapolitan pizza, Jumbo Louisiana Shrimp, Catfish Dinner, Braised Prime Beef Tips, Veal Alla Mozzarella, and Chicken Casserole.

If you prefer light foods, you can check out their salad and seafood dishes or dessert. The facility is luxurious and laid-back, with a touch of minimalism.

The restaurant also boasts of customers across different age ranges and social strata, owing to its years in operation. The customer service is incredible, and the atmosphere is cozy.



$$ | (515) 243-4516 | WEBSITE


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Baratta’s started as a small shop outside a family’s home on the south side of Des Moines before being sold to Curt, Lisa Kruger, and Joe Gatto. The trio turned the shop into a classy Italian restaurant while maintaining its former coziness.

The restaurant’s been open for over 50 years, making it a pillar in the community. It’s known for serving original Italian recipes made with Italian ingredients.

Some of its dishes have become staples on the dining tables of different families. There are provisions for outdoor catering, family specials, and banquets.



$$ | (515) 274-3694 | WEBSITE


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When Joe & Red Giudicessi acquired Christopher’s in February 1963, they looked forward to it becoming many people’s favorite. Under their supervision, the restaurant took on a classy look and upscale atmosphere.

But now that their daughter, Rene, is in charge, It’s rated one of the best in Des Moines. Whether you’re stopping by for a quick drink or a filling dish, the customer service will make you come back for more.

The restaurant provides some tasty meals: Stromboli, filet mignon, loin back ribs, steak de Burgo, gulf shrimp, encrusted tilapia, chicken Soto, French dip, and desserts like cheese and chocolate cakes.



$$ | (515) 255-3725 | WEBSITE

Simon's Restaurant Best Indian Restaurants in Edison, NJ

Even though three different people have owned it, Simon’s maintains its tradition of making their customers feel like family in a fun-filled atmosphere.

Currently owned by Simon Goheen, the restaurant is known for offering high-quality Italian foods and drinks at affordable prices.

Their wines include whites such as pinot gris, sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, Moscato, Riesling; reds such as pinot noir, zinfandel, shiraz, malbec, chianti, and beverages.

The seafood menu features scallops, salmon, surf & turf, shrimp scampi, pasta dinners like stuffed chicken, chicken parmesan, Sherry cream pasta, lasagna, and house specialties which include lamb chops, cordon bleu, pork deborgo, chicken florentine, BBQ pork, etc.


Latin King Italian Dining

$$ | (515) 266-4466 | WEBSITE

Latin King Italian Dining Best Indian Restaurants in Edison, NJ

Rose and Jim Pigneri looked forward to replicating Italian culture through food when they left Italy for Des Moines in 1947.

They succeeded; the Latin King Dining became an integral part of the culture in Des Moines. The restaurant took on a new face and included more delicacies in its menu when Bob Tursi became its owner in 1983.

He later sold it to Whitney Vinzant in 2021. The restaurant offers a wide variety of dishes, from appetizers to sides to steak and chops.

Its wine cellar is rated to be of an international standard as well. The customer service is great, and it’s a good place for catching fun and meeting new people.


F & O’s

$$ | (515) 278-8887 | WEBSITE

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If you’re looking for a restaurant that consistently serves specialty pizzas and blends American culture with Italian, F & O’s is what you want. It’s well-known for its signature pizzas made from scratch and in-house.

You can check out some pizza favorites like the gluten-free pizza for vegans, taco pizza, cream cheese veggie, Buffalo chicken ranch, etc.

There are also sandwiches, burgers, appetizers, and pasta dishes. In addition to dining in and ordering delivery, the restaurant can host events and cater for thousands of people. However, you have to make reservations in advance.



In Des Moines, Iowa, there are no better places to enjoy authentic Italian meals than the restaurants mentioned above. For an immersive and fun-filled experience, you can dine in with friends or family if the restaurant allows.

However, don’t put your health or others at risk. Don’t forget to stick to the COVID-19 guidelines as you enjoy your meal.

Best Italian Restaurants In Des Moines

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