Enticing ‘Cheat Meals' at North County Restaurants

Check out these delectable dishes garnering praise from hungry Yelpers

You’ve been true to your New Year’s resolution to step up your health and fitness all month long. But now, with January coming to a close, it may be time to throw your carb cares to the wind – at least for one good meal. Everyone deserves a “cheat meal” every now and then, so Yelp has compiled a naughty list of truly delicious dishes available at restaurants in San Diego’s North County. So, take a savory slip or maybe a dessert dive to the dark side: after all, sometimes it’s good to be a little bad.

Oink & Moo Burgers & BBQ (Fallbrook)
Finally ready for some red meat? Well, the burgers at Oink & Moo Burgers & BBQ may just be the perfect way to satisfy that carnivorous craving. The burgers at this Fallbrook restaurant are ground fresh on site daily and you can’t go wrong with pretty much anything on the menu. Try the “Oink a’ Doodle Moo,” topped with a giant waffle fry, a fried egg and your choice of cheese. Not enough? No problem, get the “Hillbilly Burger,” topped with a hot dog, tater tots, caramelized onions, American and Swiss cheese and jalapenos. This place is also known for their BBQ and the award-winning “Mac N’ Cheese Fritters,” little morsels of cheat meal heaven wrapped in bacon and served with a special sauce.

The Regal Seagull (Encinitas)
Pile a cheese-filled bratwurst high with onions and sauerkraut on a buttermilk roll and sample the savory sides. Chances are you won’t be able to get up from your carb coma. The Regal Seagull’s “Mac and Cheese Bites” are a local favorite, or choose their tater tots, mini corn dogs or giant pretzels. Hey, at this indulgent eatery, even the green beans are fried! If you make it through your meal and somehow still have room for dessert, Yelpers recommend the “Beagle Bites,” tiny, tantalizing cinnamon and sugar donut holes. It’ll take a while to work off those puppies, but it might just be worth it.

Sublime Tavern (Del Mar)
If your diet is going to die (ok, at least just for a day) you might want to do it with the hot, melted goodness of a solid grilled cheese sandwich. Del Mar’s Sublime Tavern has this comfort food at its finest: try the “Jalapeno Popper” version, made with jalapenos, cream cheese and a cheddar Parmesan crust. The decadent menu doesn’t stop there. This eatery also specializes in different variations of mac n’ cheese, many with toothsome titles such as the “Ecstasy Mac N’ Cheese,” boasting gorgonzola béchamel, applewood smoked bacon, mushrooms, roasted red pepper, garlic and thyme, or the “Rapture Mac N’ Cheese,” boasting pulled pork, caramelized onion and parsley.

Pizza Port (Multiple locations, including Solana Beach and Carlsbad)
This weekend’s big Super Bowl game is as close as it gets to the perfect time to ruin resolutions without lifting a finger – just order pizza and wings. A local legend, Pizza Port boasts arguably the meatiest wings in town and the BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger pizza (classified as “Anti-Wimpy”) hits the spot. The pie is a smorgasbord of BBQ sauce, meatballs, red onions and bacon, with mozzarella and cheddar cheeses. If smaller snacks are your style, try the garlic or cajun “Beer Buddies,” bite-sized pieces of signature or wholegrain beer crust kicked up a notch with spices and served with dipping sauce on the side. Finally, if you’re dining in, don’t forget to top off your cheat meal with a frothy-meets-frozen delight: a Stout of Porter beer float. Yes, that would be beer plus ice cream.

Dolce Italia (San Marcos)
If your mini break in healthy eating needs a sugar high, Yelp knows just the place to make those calories count: Dolce Italia in San Marcos. Here, authentic desserts and pastries created by Chef Salvo, who hails from Southern Italy, overflow the case each day. But be warned, these decadent desserts are known to go fast and sometimes sell out. The “Limoncello Tart” is sublime, topped with Meringues Brulee. The “Duo,” a combination of fresh mango and chocolate mousse is addictive. The “Sicilian Cannoli” is extremely popular and, if you just can’t decide, snag yourself an Italian Classic Mini Combo with four selections: Baba', a Chocolate Eclaire, Ricotta Berry Tart and a Pistachio Bite.

Trish Sanderson is the community manager and marketing director for Yelp North County San Diego. She leads the local community of Yelp reviewers both online and off.

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