Newsletter: Lots of expansion happening in the Dayton area foodie scene 😋

Hey Dayton!

Welcome to our weekly Dayton Food & Dining Newsletter! In honor of Mother’s Day on Sunday, I wanted to share one of my favorite easy dinner recipes that my mom makes. She used to make this around Thanksgiving using leftovers, but in recent years we’ve made this more often. I think it’s the perfect comfort dish!


  • 1 bag of egg noodles
  • shredded chicken (we typically cook 2 to 4 chicken breasts in the crock pot beforehand)
  • 1 box of stuffing
  • 1 to 2 cans of cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 8 oz bag of cheese (I use cheddar cheese)

Directions: Cook and shred chicken beforehand. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Boil egg noodles and drain. Cook stuffing according to the box. Grab a casserole dish and grease the pan with butter. Begin layering noodles, chicken, mushroom soup and cheese. I do two layers. The recipe calls for 1 can of mushroom soup, but the last time I used an extra can. I also recommend adding a half a can of water to make sure the casserole isn’t dry.

Add the stuffing to the very top. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and cook for 25 to 30 minutes.

Please note: I used an 8-by-12 casserole dish. When I make it again, I will probably use the next size up.

If you’re looking for a restaurant to take your mom to on Mother’s Day, here’s a list my co-worker Alexis Larsen put together of Dayton-area establishments offering something special.

El Toro started from humble beginnings, now widely known

What started as a father’s dream to work close with his family and share his culture has turned into 14 Mexican restaurants across the Dayton area with more new concepts on the way.

El Toro, a locally owned Mexican restaurant, opened its first location in Springfield in 1999 and has since expanded to Bellbrook, Vandalia, Huber Heights, Dayton, Beavercreek, Englewood, Springboro and Centerville.

Ahead of Cinco de Mayo, I sat down with Enrique Alvarez, El Toro’s district manager, to talk about the humble beginnings of the Munoz family, which owns El Toro, and what’s next for the restaurants. Here are four projects the family is currently working on:

  • Renovations in Bellbrook — Alvarez said they are almost done.
  • El Toro Express — A fast-casual restaurant is expected to open this summer in Miamisburg on North Springboro Pike. Guests will have the convenience of ordering through a drive-thru, but if they want to sit down inside, they can.
  • New El Toro Mexican Bar & Grill — El Toro is planning to open a new restaurant at 1388 E. Dayton Yellow Springs Road, east of Interstate 675 at the intersection with Trebein Road in Fairborn. Alvarez said architects are almost done with their part and then they can start building the restaurant. The restaurant is expected to open in roughly two years.
  • Vallarta — The owners of El Toro have plans to open a new concept in the former El Toro location at 4448 Indian Ripple Road in Beavercreek. El Toro moved that restaurant across the street to the former space of Mimi’s Bistro & Bakery at The Greene Town Center in January. The plan is to open Vallarta, a restaurant focusing on Mexican seafood, sometime this year. Alvarez said they are currently working on the menu.

When asked what’s their key to success, Alvarez told me it’s building relationships with their customers and reinvesting into the restaurants.

To read more about El Toro, click here.

Dayton Indian restaurant plans to expand

The Twist Indian Grill, a fast-casual Indian restaurant offering customers a chance to create their own bowls and burritos, is now open daily with plans to expand.

Owner Maulin Patel told me that since opening the restaurant in August, the Dayton area has been very supportive of his concept. So much so, he now plans to franchise.

Patel has started the process for franchise registration and found a partner to open a second restaurant in Milford, Delaware with an expected opening in September. He said he is also looking to expand south of Dayton.

“We are actively looking around Mason,” he said. “In Dayton, if I open another one, we are looking around either Miamisburg or Centerville.”

Customers at The Twist Indian Grill are able to create their own entrée by choosing from different types of Indian rice, curry and meats. Patel said he has plans to add chicken sandwiches with an Indian twist as well as new meat options like ground lamb and chicken.

The restaurant, located at 2627 S. Smithville Road in Dayton, is open 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Fairborn chef known for egg rolls moves business into food bus

Syrita Nuttall, a Fairborn chef known for egg rolls, has moved her business into a food bus after operating out of a commercial kitchen and participating in events under a pop-up tent.

Nuttall, who owns Home Cooked Vibes with her partner, James Highsmith, said they are Chicago natives who moved to Fairborn in 2017. That same year, Nuttall graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Chicago.

Before launching her business, Nuttall served as a Bob Evans general manager. Due to restaurant industry stress during the coronavirus pandemic, she quit in July 2020. One month later she received her membership in the entrepreneur-based Spark Fairborn.

She said she initially began making cheesecakes but once she made egg rolls for a friend’s Christmas party, her business ultimately took off.

Home Cooked Vibes features savory and sweet egg rolls. Savory egg rolls include buffalo chicken, Philly cheesesteak, chicken taco and veggie among others. Sweet eggrolls include strawberry cheesecake, Oreo and Reese’s cup.

In the future, Nuttall said they would love to sell the egg rolls to retail stores and upgrade the food bus.

Home Cooked Vibes plans to be at Radiance Tech in Beavercreek from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday and Hobson Park in Fairborn from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday.

Quick Bites:

🍽 Celebrate Mother’s Day with a food truck rally: The Fashion Meets Food Truck Rally returns to Dayton on Sunday, May 14 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Montgomery County Department of Job and Family Services, 1111 S. Edwin C. Moses Blvd.

👨‍🌾 Saturday farmers markets coming to downtown Xenia: This week’s market from 9 a.m. to noon will be a specialty market featuring gifts for Mother’s Day. From locally grown flowers and seedlings to bird feeders, wind chimes and more, the farmers market will be the perfect place to find a last-minute gift.

🧇 New eatery to join Centerville’s growing dining scene: International Restaurant & Delicatessen is scheduled to make its debut June 1 at 261 N. Main St. The restaurant’s menu includes wraps, subs and sandwiches that are made from Halal lunch meats, as well as a selection of waffle options, including waffle sticks, waffle balls, bubble waffles, waffle donuts, waffle puffs, Belgian waffles and handmade waffle cones, all covered with dips and toppings. Read more about the restaurant here.

🍩 Baker Benji’s to hold grand opening in Dayton: The bakery, located at 700 Troy St., will hold a grand opening on Saturday, May 20. The first 25 people in the door that day will receive one free doughnut or one free cupcake a month for a year.

🥗 Bibibop Asian Grill to open Huber Heights location: Broad Reach Retail Partners LLC posted to its Facebook page last week, announcing plans for the restaurant to open later this year. For more information, click here.

Tell Us:

Thank you so much for reading my weekly newsletter! If you see a new restaurant opening or are wondering when an establishment is expected to open up, feel free to email me here, and I’ll check it out.

Also, remember to follow Dayton Daily News on Facebook or search our Food & Dining section for the latest stories. I’ll have continuous updates on my Facebook or Twitter pages.

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