A Taste Of Oklahoma: Cafe 75 In Mounds Shows The Power Of Simplicity

A down-home restaurant tucked into a small location in downtown Mounds is serving up country cooking to people from all over the state and even around the world. Cafe 75 opened about a year ago and since then, it’s drawn people to its simple menu, community atmosphere, and gluten-free options.

Wednesday, January 17th 2024, 5:35 pm



A downhome restaurant tucked in a small location in downtown Mounds is serving up country cooking to people from all over the state – and even around the world.

Cafe 75 opened about a year ago, and since then, it’s drawn people to its simple menu, community atmosphere and gluten-free options. Little Mounds, Oklahoma off Alternate Highway 75 has fewer than 1000 residents, but those who call it home have a lot of heart. Cafe 75 was opened originally just to feed some of those residents.

“We named the local folks and we'll sit with Wayne and Ruben," said Kyle Rackley.

Owners Kyle and Karen Rackley thought that might mean serving about 40 meals a day.

“We average probably five times that," Kyle said.

That means— things get busy! And back in the kitchen, prep work for the day takes a family effort.

“We’ve got grandma scrubbing taters," Kyle said.

Daughter Karian is focused on baking some massive chocolate chip cookies.

“I fold it around the get the chips toward the middle," she said.

Youngest son Kyson works to chop and bread steak for the special of the day: steak fingers.

“It's a lot of work, but people love 'em," Kyle said.

Kyle and Karen have lived in Mounds for many years and said the sleepy town needed a new place to eat. They’ve never owned or even worked in restaurants, but they know how to cook.

“We homeschooled four kids," Kyle said. "We lived in Mounds, and we didn't go out to eat much.”

A historic space downtown became available and the two jumped on the chance to open a cafe. But the former hardware store and undertaker business was stacked high with knick-knacks and antiques and they spent months and months cleaning it out and finding new homes for all the stuff.

Some of the items now hang proudly in their restaurant, which has really taken off after a year of being open.

“We thought it would be a lazy little cafe, we've just been surprised at the response," said Karen.

Cafe 75’s “Where Y'all From” wall showcases how customers come from all over the place to test out the chicken fried steak, sliders, chicken strips, and the extensive gluten-free options.

Karen is gluten-free and wanted people to feel like they could get comfort food too.

“People drive from all over for the gluten-free food," Karen said.

Customers love the food and they love the mission behind the place too. The specials change daily and weekly, which keeps Karen and Kyle innovating.

“When we go out to eat now, it's not to critique but to learn from them," Kyle said.

The Rackleys never thought their family recipes would gather such a following and say they’ve made their fair share of mistakes along the way.

“You're not going to be perfect all the time, you are gonna mess up," said Karen.

But seeing the support, and watching their small town grow and thrive, makes the hard work pay off.

“This is the way we cook," Kyle said. "We feel like we’re welcoming people into our home.’

Filling up this small, cozy space with love and care put into each home-cooked meal.

SEND RECOMMENDATIONS: Kristen.Weaver@Griffin.News

Follow @Kristeats on Instagram for Oklahoma food content

If you know of a restaurant we should feature please send Kristen an email to kristen.weaver@griffin.news

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