Follow The Trail Through Dallas' Smokin' Hot Barbecue Scene

There's no doubt that barbecue reigns king in Texas– and if you haven't experienced it first hand, then you basically haven't been living. But there's no need to make a pilgrimage down to Central Texas' barbecue belt to get your 'cue fix on when some of the best in the state can be found right here in Big D.  

First up is Pecan Lodge, a veritable temple to wood-fired meats that's known as much for its lines as it is for its mind-blowing barbecue.

Talk about lines, there's always one outside of CattleAck BBQ, a hole-in-the-wall place that's only open for a few hours, two days a week. Don't let the crowds dissuade you from coming though, folks say that this place's brisket is the stuff of Dallas legend.

And it's not just Texas-style barbecue that's been making a strong showing. One of the new kids on the block, 18th and Vine, is bringing a taste of Kansas City to Dallas in the form of succulent ribs and drool-worthy burnt ends. It also boasts an intimate jazz lounge upstairs.

If all these places are whetting your appetite, then you'll want to follow this handy 10Best guide to find out about more of Dallas' most sizzling barbecue hot-spots.  

ONE90 Smoked Meats
Photo courtesy of Instagram User Duane Smith

Despite seating just five diners at a time, this multi-tasking meat market and taco haven has, in less than a year –carved out a reputation for serving some of Dallas' finest barbecue. Or more specifically, small-batch craft smoked meats, that...  Read More

The Slow Bone
Photo courtesy of The Slow Bone Facebook

Not only can Jack Perkins flip a mean patty at his iconic Dallas burger spot-- Maple and Motor, he can also smoke up some killer barbecue at his cafeteria-style (lunch-only) diner, which fired up the Design District in 2013. Recycled church hymn...  Read More

Off the Bone Barbeque
Photo courtesy of Instagram User Russ_Sonenclar

Think you know ribs? Think again. Set up in a former gas station, this family-run joint is not only a popular barbecue destination (even other chefs eat here on their off-hours), it's a veritable place of pilgrimage for baby back rib devotees....  Read More

Smoke Restaurant Dallas
Photo courtesy of Smoke Restaurant

At Smoke, a cozy rustic-chic restaurant adjacent to the Belmont Hotel, Dallas chef and James Beard Award winning author, Tim Byers, pays homage to campfire cuisine by cooking nearly everything on his farm-to-fork driven menu over seasoned...  Read More

18th and Vine Barbeque
Photo courtesy of Ilene Jacobs

Opening a barbecue restaurant in Dallas is gutsy enough, much less one that specializes in Kansas City-style (the Missouri one) barbecue. But right off the bat, 18th and Vine was an instant hit. Though, don't be fooled into thinking that this is...  Read More

Lockhart Smokehouse
Photo courtesy of Lockhart Smokehouse Facebook

Named after the official barbecue capital of Texas, this popular Bishop Arts smokehouse serves what many locals consider is the closest thing you can get to authentic Central Texas-style barbecue. Which is no surprise since the co-owner, Jill...  Read More

CattleAck BBQ
Photo courtesy of Cattleack BBQ Instagram

Perhaps Dallas' worst-kept secret, just getting into this cult destination can feel like cause for celebration. You'll almost certainly encounter a line, and it's mostly outside. Plus the place is only open for a few hours (10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.)...  Read More

Pecan Lodge
Photo courtesy of Instagram User Dan Nesson

Dallas is filled with barbecue joints, but none can compare with the smoky goodness coming out of this rustic barbecue haven. Pecan Lodge's 'cue is so good that Texas Monthly named it one of the top BBQ joints in the state, and Food Network's...  Read More

Hutchins BBQ
Photo courtesy of Instagram User Dv_ous

Regardless of which location you go to (Frisco or McKinney), trying to get a table at this smoked meat mecca usually involves a little patience, especially if you come around mealtime. Which is no surprise, really: the place has won awards out...  Read More


Meet Ilene Jacobs

As a perpetual wanderer, foodie freak and wannabe chef, Ilene is always on the lookout for the best places to see, eat, drink and sleep. When she's not writing about the latest happenings in...  More About Ilene