Raleigh, North Carolina, is a haven for barbecue enthusiasts, with a plethora of mouthwatering options to explore. Here is a guide for you on the best BBQ in Raleigh.
Whether you’re a local looking for your next BBQ fix or a visitor eager to indulge in the region’s culinary delights, this comprehensive guide will take you on a journey through the best BBQ joints in Raleigh.
From tender pulled pork to succulent ribs and tantalizing sauces, prepare to tantalize your taste buds as we explore the top BBQ spots that are sure to leave you craving for more.
Clyde Cooper’s Barbecue
Clyde Cooper’s Barbecue is a Raleigh institution, with a rich history dating back to 1938. This iconic BBQ joint is renowned for its traditional Eastern North Carolina-style barbecue.
The slow-cooked, pit-smoked pork shoulder is the star of the show, boasting a perfect balance of smoky flavors and tender, juicy meat. Paired with a tangy vinegar-based sauce, this classic BBQ experience will transport you back in time.
Don’t miss their famous hush puppies and coleslaw, which perfectly complement the main attraction.
Clyde Cooper’s Barbecue Contact:
Address: 327 S Wilmington St, Raleigh, NC 27601
Phone: (919) 832-7614
Located in downtown Raleigh, The Pit is a contemporary BBQ restaurant that offers a modern twist on traditional Southern flavors. The Pit’s menu features a variety of BBQ favorites, from brisket and pulled pork to smoked chicken and St. Louis-style ribs.
Their commitment to quality shines through in their meticulous smoking process, resulting in tender, flavorful meats. The Pit also boasts an extensive selection of house-made sauces, allowing you to personalize your BBQ experience.
Pair your meal with classic sides like mac and cheese or collard greens for the ultimate Southern feast.
The Pit Contact:
Address: 328 W Davie St, Raleigh, NC 27601
Phone: (919) 890-4500
Ole Time Barbecue
If you’re searching for an authentic, down-home BBQ experience, look no further than Ole Time Barbecue. This family-owned restaurant has been serving up hearty BBQ fare since 1993.
The star of their menu is the pit-cooked, chopped pork, featuring a delectable blend of smoky and savory flavors. The ribs are another standout, boasting a perfect balance of tenderness and a mouthwatering crust.
Ole Time Barbecue offers a cozy, no-frills atmosphere that adds to its charm, making it a favorite among locals and visitors alike.
Ole Time Barbecue Contact:
Address: 6309 Hillsborough St, Raleigh, NC 27606
Phone: (919) 859-2544
The Q Shack
For those seeking a fusion of BBQ traditions, The Q Shack is a must-visit destination. This BBQ joint combines the best of both worlds, offering a diverse menu inspired by various regional styles.
Whether you prefer the tangy flavors of Kansas City, the robust spices of Texas, or the vinegar-based sauces of North Carolina, The Q Shack has something for everyone. Their smoked meats, including brisket, pulled pork, and turkey, are complemented by an array of innovative sides like jalapeno mac and cheese and collard green egg rolls.
The Q Shack’s commitment to quality ingredients and bold flavors make it a standout in Raleigh’s BBQ scene.
The Q Shack Contact:
Address: 2510 University Dr, Durham, NC 27707
Phone: (919) 402-4227
Backyard Bistro offers a unique BBQ experience in a lively sports-themed setting. While known for its excellent sports bar ambiance, Backyard Bistro also excels in its BBQ offerings. The menu features classic BBQ staples such as ribs, pulled pork, and smoked chicken, all cooked to perfection.
Their smoky flavors and tender meats are enhanced by a range of house-made sauces, allowing you to customize your plate to your liking. The casual atmosphere and friendly service make Backyard Bistro a popular spot for both BBQ enthusiasts and sports fans.
Backyard Bistro Contact:
Address: 1235 Hurricane Alley Way, Raleigh, NC 27607
Phone: (919) 851-6203
City Barbeque brings a taste of the Midwest to Raleigh with its authentic, slow-smoked meats and bold flavors. This barbecue joint takes pride in its hand-rubbed meats, smoked on-site for up to 18 hours, resulting in tender and flavorful creations.
From their signature pulled pork and brisket to the mouthwatering smoked sausage, every bite is a delight. City Barbeque also offers a variety of homemade sides, including creamy mac and cheese, baked beans, and cornbread, to complete your BBQ feast.
With a commitment to quality and a welcoming atmosphere, City Barbeque is a popular choice for both dine-in and takeout.
City Barbeque Contact:
Address: 1305 Kildaire Farm Rd, Cary, NC 27511
Phone: (919) 439-5191
Allen & Son Barbecue
Nestled in the charming town of Chapel Hill, just a short drive from Raleigh, Allen & Son Barbecue is worth the journey for its legendary barbecue experience.
This family-owned institution has been serving up traditional North Carolina-style barbecue since 1970. Their pit-cooked, whole hog barbecue is a true testament to the region’s heritage, boasting a perfect balance of smoky flavors and tender meat.
Allen & Son Barbecue also offers mouthwatering ribs, chicken, and classic sides like collard greens and hush puppies. With its rustic charm and commitment to quality, Allen & Son Barbecue is a must-visit for barbecue enthusiasts looking to indulge in an authentic taste of North Carolina.
Allen & Son Barbecue Contact:
Address: 6203 Millhouse Rd, Chapel Hill, NC 27516
Phone: (919) 942-7576
Brew N Que
Combining two beloved culinary traditions, Brew N Que offers a unique dining experience by fusing barbecue with craft beer. Located in downtown Raleigh, this gastropub specializes in craft BBQ and features an extensive selection of local and regional brews.
Brew N Que’s menu showcases their passion for both flavors, with offerings such as smoked brisket, pulled pork, and sausage paired with innovative sides like bacon-wrapped jalapenos and smoked gouda mac and cheese.
The bar boasts an impressive beer list, allowing you to find the perfect pairing for your BBQ meal. With its laid-back ambiance and flavorful creations, Brew N Que offers a refreshing twist on the classic barbecue experience.
Brew N Que Contact:
Address: 1327 S Saunders St, Raleigh, NC 27603
Phone: (919) 834-2739
Big Mike’s BBQ
Big Mike’s BBQ, a family-owned and operated establishment, has been serving up delicious barbecue in Raleigh for over a decade. This hidden gem is known for its Texas-style smoked meats, featuring slow-cooked brisket, tender ribs, and flavorful pulled pork.
The meats are complemented by a variety of sauces, including a tangy vinegar-based option and a robust, spicy sauce. Big Mike’s BBQ also offers classic sides like cornbread, collard greens, and baked beans, all made from scratch.
The friendly staff and casual atmosphere create a welcoming environment for barbecue lovers of all ages.
Big Mike’s BBQ Contact:
Address: 1222 NW Maynard Rd, Cary, NC 27513
Phone: (919) 468-3148
Final thoughts on the Best BBQ Places in Raleigh, North Carolina
Raleigh is a haven for BBQ lovers, offering a diverse range of establishments that showcase the rich barbecue heritage of the region. Whether you prefer traditional Eastern North Carolina-style vinegar-based sauces or enjoy exploring innovative flavor combinations, there’s a BBQ joint in Raleigh to satisfy every craving.
From the time-honored Clyde Cooper’s Barbecue, where you can savor the smoky goodness of slow-cooked pork shoulder, to the contemporary twist on Southern flavors at The Pit, where tender brisket and St. Louis-style ribs take center stage, Raleigh’s BBQ scene offers a diverse array of options.
For a true taste of down-home cooking, Ole Time Barbecue is a family-owned gem that serves up pit-cooked, chopped pork and mouthwatering ribs, providing a nostalgic experience that keeps locals and visitors coming back for more.
If you’re looking to explore the fusion of BBQ traditions, The Q Shack is a standout choice. With a menu inspired by various regional styles, you can sample the tangy flavors of Kansas City, the robust spices of Texas, and the vinegar-based sauces of North Carolina, all in one place.
Backyard Bistro offers a unique twist by combining a lively sports-themed atmosphere with exceptional BBQ. Whether you’re cheering for your favorite team or enjoying a leisurely meal, their tender ribs, pulled pork, and smoked chicken will satisfy your barbecue cravings.
While these are just a few of the best BBQ joints in Raleigh, the city is brimming with more hidden gems waiting to be discovered. Whether you’re exploring food trucks, hole-in-the-wall establishments, or upscale BBQ restaurants, Raleigh’s BBQ scene is sure to impress.
Remember to follow your taste buds, try different sauces, and embrace the smoky goodness that makes North Carolina barbecue so beloved. Plan your BBQ adventure in Raleigh, and get ready to indulge in a mouthwatering journey through the city’s best BBQ joints.