NOLA is heaven on earth for foodies! Figuring out where to eat in New Orleans is a huge challenge because there are few cities (Austin maybe?) that offer the quantity and quality of deliciousness the Big Easy does. It can all feel pretty overwhelming when you’re planning a trip, but luckily we did the research to help you navigate the rich culinary scene of New Orleans.
Keep in mind this list is more about classics and local favorites than fine dining. We still fantasize about the meals we ate there on a regular basis and eating at a few of these places is reason enough for us to visit again. These were some favorites of ours, hopefully, this post gives you a few ideas. Bon appétit!
WHERE TO EAT IN NEW ORLEANS
Domilise’s for Po-boys
5240 Annunciation St, New Orleans, LA 70115, USA
The best po-boy places are always up for debate amongst locals. Some will say Parkway while many others will say Domilise’s. The Manning family (NFL) lived in the neighborhood and grew up coming here, you can tell by all of the signed sports memorabilia on the walls. The friendly man behind the counter told us that Drew Brees still comes in occasionally for a sandwich and we can see why.
We tried the shrimp and the catfish and they were both excellent. The shop’s been there for 100 years, stop by, they’re a pleasant bunch. Have a Barq’s root beer in a glass bottle with your lunch. Oh and send us a sandwich in the mail too!
Jacques-Imo’s Cafe – Real Nawlins Food
8324 Oak St, New Orleans, LA 70118
Their phrase, “Real Nawlins Food” sums this place up well. A local favorite, we got recommendations to go here by our Uber and Lyft drivers, Airbnb host, and countless others. Anthony Bourdain also visited on his “A Cook’s Tour” TV show back in the day. Excellent fish dishes, boudin balls, stuffed shrimp, fried chicken and more! Located next door to the Maple Leaf Bar in the Carrollton neighborhood, you could eat dinner here and then head next door for live music. This place is dress-down casual with a funky laid back vibe.
Felix’s for Seafood Platters/Raw Oysters
739 Iberville St, New Orleans, LA 70130
This place was recommended to us by a friend from Louisiana. It’s located right off of Bourbon Street, but don’t let that put you off. Their fried seafood platters are wonderful, the cornmeal batter is excellent and we loved their oysters on the half shell too. Squeeze some lemon on em and slurp em down!
Read next: The 10 Best Bars in NOLA for Your 2020 Trip
Willie Mae’s Scotch House
2401 St Ann St, New Orleans, LA 70119
Willie Mae’s is the perfect place to get some good ol’ Southern soul food. The seasoned fried chicken is crispy on the outside and moist on the inside and easily the best we’ve ever had! Pairs perfectly with a side of their creamy butter beans.
Expect long waits on the weekends. We stood in line for 1-1.5 hrs in the shade (it was still very hot) and then waited again once we got inside. Don’t expect fast super friendly service here. We’d recommend arriving by 10:30 am on a weekday so you’re there thirty minutes before they open. You’ll save yourself a lot of time and hassle.
Bistreaux in the Maison Dupuy Hotel
1001 Toulouse St, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
We stayed at this hotel for a few nights, and whether you do the same or not, they have a wonderful breakfast menu and happy hour with very reasonable prices. Happy hour is from 3-6pm daily. Grab a Pimm’s Cup and order the pork belly/fried oyster sliders for just $6.
Try their phenomenal Croque monsieur with gruyère cheese and wash it all down with a bloody mary made from vegetable infused vodka, containing all the garnishes your heart desires. The interior walls are decorated with colorful recreations of French classical paintings. The most noteworthy being At the Moulin Rouge, the Dance painted by French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec in 1890.
841 Iberville Street, New Orleans, LA 70112
This was the first place we went to when we arrived. Nice fried seafood, po-boys, stuffed catfish, and oysters. It’s a family-friendly restaurant in the French Quarter. Grab a table or a seat at the bar and cool off with a bite and a beverage on those warm humid Louisiana afternoons.
Hansen’s Sno Bliz
4801 Tchoupitoulas St, New Orleans, LA 70115
Next on the list of where to eat in New Orleans is a NOLA institution. In business now for 80 years, this charming family-owned shop in Uptown is the best place to visit on a hot day. Expect a wait, but once you get inside you’ll find yourself hard-pressed to choose from over 100 flavors of delicious shaved ice.
Ashley Hansen is a truly lovely person and she does a great job of carrying on her grandparents’ local legacy. We got stuck in the shop on a rainy day and had the opportunity to speak with her for about an hour. Her grandfather was a machinist and he made the first shaved ice machine back in 1939. They originally sold their concoctions for .02 cents each and her grandmother knew they were onto something when they made $20 one day! Try one of their cream flavors or go for a really unique one like cardamom or cucumber lime.
1040 Elysian Fields Ave, New Orleans, LA 70117
This is a no-frills po-boy spot. It was featured on the Simpsons once, and New Orleans legend Fats Domino used to eat here. Located on the corner of Elysian Fields & St. Claude this is a local classic, not a touristy place at all. Try the hot sausage or roast beef po-boy with American cheese. It comes in a brown bag, just like your school lunch used to, and is around $13 for a full sandwich. Open 24 hours!
Central Grocery & Deli
923 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116
Central Grocery is a small authentic Italian grocery and deli which opened in 1906. The founder, Salvatore Lupo, was a Sicilian immigrant and the originator of the muffuletta sandwich. It may cost you $20, but it’s a huge sandwich featuring a stack of salami, mortadella, cheese, and fresh olive salad.
These sandwiches keep well too. Order a full one, eat the first half, and then save the rest for later. Once the olive oil has seeped into the bread it’s really something special. They also sell the ingredients if you want to try making it at home. Others have said the muffuletta is even better at Cochon Butcher, try both and decide for yourself.
Tee-Eva’s Pralines & Pies
5201 Magazine St., New Orleans, LA 70115
A trip to New Orleans must include sampling PRALINES. How you say it doesn’t matter (pray-leens or praw-leens) as long as you get to try em. Ooooh lord! French croquette women brought them over in order to appease young settlers they were trying to marry. These tasty sugary treats have been a part of the culture ever since.
Anthony Bourdain went to Tee-Eva’s for pralines and if they’re good enough for him, they’re good enough for us. Sadly Tee Eva affectionately known as the “Praline Queen” in New Orleans passed away recently, but her granddaughter has taken on the role of carrying on her tradition. You can also find pralines at Aunt Sally’s across from the Central Grocery & Deli on Decatur Street in the French Quarter.
The Camellia Grill
626 S Carrollton Ave., New Orleans, LA 70118
An iconic and affordable greasy spoon diner located in the Uptown neighborhood. The servers wear bow ties and greet you with a smile. It has a rich history in the community! It’s mostly counter seating so you’ll be rubbing elbows with the locals. Their burgers are juicy and oozing with cheese, and they serve breakfast all day. This is a fantastic place to eat when you’re hungover after a night out in the city. Try the chocolate freeze or chocolate pecan pie for dessert. Both are seriously out of this world!
No visit to NOLA would be complete without having these powdered French nuggets of goodness. It seems obvious, so we won’t go on and on about them, but ya gotta get some. If you want to avoid the long waits at Cafe Du Monde try Cafe Beignet instead. And be sure to order a chicory coffee to go with it!
What would you add to this list of where to eat in New Orleans? Holler at us in the comments…