If there’ s one thing Texans know how to do well, it’s BBQ. You see, here in Texas, BBQing is an art. It takes time, lots of practice and a great deal of patience to really BBQ well. We like to smoke our meats here for hours at a time to make sure the meat almost melts in your mouth. Sounds tasty, doesn’t it?
When people visit Texas, the number one thing I recommend that they do is try a great BBQ joint. And you don’t need to find a fancy restaurant to have good BBQ here in Texas. In fact, most of the best is found in a trailer or in an old barn, making the experience of getting good Texas BBQ just as fun as actually eating it. So when Expedia put me up to the challenge to find some unique BBQ places in Texas, I was ready for the challenge!
Five Unique BBQ Joints to Try in Texas
Austin: Franklin’s BBQ
Named by Bon Appétit as the “best BBQ in the United States”, a typical wait at Franklin’s BBQ can be 2-4 hours. No joke. Most days, there is already a line of people before the restaurant even opens. And before you ask, yes, the hype is worth it. Franklin’s has hands-down the best brisket I have ever tasted in my life. It could be the dry-rub, the wood-fire method, or even the coffee-spiked BBQ-sauce. Whatever it is, it’s perfection. And Austinites don’t typically mind the wait. They bring drinks and chairs, and many times a pick-up football game will be played in the lot. Again, it’s all about the experience.
Dallas: Pecan Lodge
Located in Deep Ellum, near downtown Dallas, the Pecan Lodge is another BBQ joint that’s “worth the wait.” Yes, you may encounter a LONG line here, but it moves quickly and it’s absolutely worth the wait. Brisket is the star at Pecan Lodge, with beef ribs, pulled pork, and sandwiches also available. One must try the “Hot Mess” – a shredded brisket topped sweet potato that is amazing.
Ft. Worth: Cooper’s Old-Time Pit Bar-B-Que
Near the Stockyards in Fort Worth sits BBQ joint that originated deep in the Hill Country of Texas. Cooper’s comes from Llano, and North Texans are happy to have them up in Ft. Worth. Pick your meat directly from the grill and carry it inside to slice it up. Cooper’s is known for it’s “Big Chop” – home to some of the juiciest pork chops you will ever try. With your meal served on butcher paper and seating on long picnic tables, Cooper’s is a fun experience for everyone.
Houston: Killen’s Barbecue
Voted a “must-visit place in Houston” by Food Network, Killen’s Barbecue in Pearland has a fantastic following. It’s another line-worthing BBQ joint with a tremendous selection of brisket, beef ribs, turkey, sausage, and amazing sides. You can pull a number when you get there, so you don’t have to wait in a line and a community of BBQ-lovers forms, all waiting for their yummy selection. And the desserts are to die for – all classic Texas desserts, including pecan pie and peach cobbler. On top of the fantastic meal, Killen’s boasts a relaxed setting, perfect to get miserably full in.
San Antonio: The Granary ‘Cue and Brew
Located in the historic Pearl Brewery area in downtown San Antonio, The Granary offers more than just it’s cool building. The Granary serves the traditional Texas ‘cue and a great section of Carolina-styled pulled pork. Both are sensational and hard to choose which to go for (hint: get them both). Grab some German-potato salad for a tasty side and stick around for dinner, when the menu gets a bit more eclectic – Szechuan duck leg anyone?
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Disclosure: This post was in partnership with Expedia but that did not influence Texas TravelingMom Rebecca Darling. She loves all of these BBQ joints.