Top 15 BBQ Restaurants in Louisville You Need to Visit

Enjoy some good BBQ in one of the biggest BBQ scenes in the country!

Louisville boasts one of the biggest BBQ scenes in the country. From quaint food trucks to established family restaurants, Louisville offers something for everyone. Whether you’re planning a first date or a special get-together, you can easily find a BBQ joint that delivers great food and service. Pulled pork sandwiches, brisket plates, and more popular BBQ dishes await you in this bustling Southern city. Need help finding a great BBQ spot? We’ve got your back. Check out our list of the top 9 BBQ restaurants in Louisville, KY now!

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These are the BBQ restaurants that you should visit: 

1. Louie’s Hot Chicken & BBQ

2. Feast BBQ

3. Momma's Mustard, Pickles & BBQ

4. River Road BBQ

5. Mark’s Feed Store

6. Frankfort Ave Beer Depot

7. Doc Crow's Southern Smokehouse & Raw Bar

8. Hammerhead’s 

9. City Barbeque

10. Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse

11. Mission BBQ 

13. Rubbies BBQ and Brew

14. Bootleg BBQ 

15. Back Deck BBQ

1. Louie’s Hot Chicken & BBQ

Smoking plates of hot chicken, brisket, pork, and wings served daily inside a low-key shop

Enjoy a fresh, hot chicken sandwich at one of Louisville’s most popular BBQ spots. Image courtesy of Yelp.

4222 Poplar Level Rd | Poplar Level | louieshotchickenandbbq.com

Louie’s Hot Chicken & BBQ is the result of six years of painstaking work spent developing the perfect hot chicken recipe. Founded by three friends who shared a passion for cooking, Louie’s Hot Chicken & BBQ has since mastered the art of creating delicious hot chicken and BBQ platters. 

Heat levels for the chicken range from medium, hot, extra hot, and extra extra hot. You can order tenders, breasts, wings, thighs, legs, or even the whole bird! All chicken platters are served with your choice of two sides. House-smoked meats include brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and smoked wings. A wide array of signature homemade sauces like the Louie’s Sauce and White sauce are also available to finish off your meal. 

“Hands down, Louie is THE hot chicken spot in Louisville. My cousin recommended I check this place out and I owe him big time for it. I don't know why I haven't checked out Louie's earlier, because the food is truly top tier. I could go on and on about the wonders of Louie's, but written words aren't enough to capture the pure euphoria I experienced.” - Yelp Review

2. Feast BBQ

Top destination for barbecue in Louisville, KY, craft beer, and bourbon slushies

909 E Market St | NuLu | feastbbq.com

For years, Feast BBQ has earned the prestigious distinction of Louisville’s Best Barbecue Restaurant by LEO Weekly. As one of the best BBQ spots in Louisville, Feast BBQ knows its craft. It understands that cooking hearty and delicious BBQ takes time and practice. As soon as you take a bite into one of its famous pulled pork sandwiches or chopped chicken plates, you’ll understand where all of the hype is coming from. 

All of the sides are made from scratch, thus becoming the perfect complements to your BBQ dish. Coming with friends? We recommend sharing a plate of the Smoked Wings or Loaded Tots. There are also gluten-free, soy-free, and vegetarian options for any guests with diet restrictions. 

“Such a cool spot! Lots of options and can easily customize what you want, I loved the brisket tacos, and the Mac and cheese and the hot vinegar sauce were so good! Loved the local beer selection on tap as well. ” - Yelp Review

3. Momma's Mustard, Pickles & BBQ

Kansas City style BBQ served inside a rustic environment

No photo description available.
The Beef Ribs are one of the most popular items on the menu. Image courtesy of Momma’s Mustard, Pickles & BBQ.

102 Bauer Ave | Louisville | mommasbbq.com

Having been featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, Momma’s Mustard has certified itself as one of the top BBQ spots in Louisville. Not only does it serve delicious BBQ, but it also donates 2% of all sales to the Special Olympics of Kentucky, Dare to Care Food Bank, The Home of the Innocents, The Healing Place, Olmsted Parks Conservancy, and Sierra Club of Louisville.

Meatloaf, pulled pork, smoked sausage, and more savory meats can be found on the restaurant’s specialized menu. You can purchase meat by the pound or order it in a sandwich or slider. Burnt ends are also offered upon availability. Want to take some of the restaurant’s famous dry rub home? 16oz jars of Momma’s Rub are served and ready for you to enjoy!

“I got the pulled pork grilled cheese plus fries and cheezy corn. My food arrived warm and was the epitome of comfort food. The grilled cheese was gooey, and the pork was perfectly cooked. ” - Yelp Review 

4. River Road BBQ

Delicious yet simple BBQ made with real smoke and fire

3017 River Rd | Brownsboro Zorn, Waterfront | riverroadbbq.com

River Road BBQ is a small and charming restaurant that likes to keep things simple. The restaurant makes its BBQ using real smoke and fire on its 10,000-pound smoker without any unnecessary additions. 

Cold smoked meats like pulled pork and beef brisket are used in sandwiches with house BBQ sauce. Sausage, ribs, and other meat specials are served fresh and hot. Coming with the family? Order a Family Pack! The Family Pack includes pork, brisket, chicken, and two pints of sides. Altogether, it feeds about two adults and two children. 

“Both the chopped chicken and pulled pork are amazing, and their bbq sauce is great too! Though let it be known, this smoked meat doesn't even need BBQ sauce - it's just that good. I'm not the biggest fan of meat, so that's really saying something!” - Yelp Review

5. Mark’s Feed Store

World-class BBQ joint feeding hungry customers since 1988

11422 Shelbyville Rd | Louisville | marksfeedstore.com

Since 1988, Mark’s Feed Store has enjoyed an enviable reputation as one of the best BBQ joints in Louisville. Over the years, it has been featured in publications like Southern Living and TOPS Louisville. 

Only the highest-quality pork, brisket, and chicken are selected for serving. These meats are slowly cooked using hickory wood before being topped with the restaurant’s famous Bar-B-Q sauce. In addition to its famous pork, brisket, and chicken plates, Mark’s Feed Store also serves ribs, wings, tenders, burgers, and sandwiches. Whatever you order, you are sure to leave feeling filled and satisfied. 

“I ordered the sandwich with the maple bacon aioli, and my husband ordered it with their honey hot sauce. Both versions were great! We both had fries and homemade chips with our sandwiches. The fries and chips had a great seasoning on them.” - Yelp Review

6. Frankfort Ave Beer Depot

Unique BBQ restaurant that features a free mini-golf course

Photo of Frankfort Avenue Beer Depot - Louisville, KY, United States. Salmon dinner
Treat yourself to a delicious comfort meal at Frankfort Ave Beer Depot, which is one of the best BBQ restaurants in Louisville, KY. Image courtesy of Yelp.

3204 Frankfort Ave | Crescent Hill, The Avenue | fabdsmokehouse.com 

Located in Crescent Hill, Frankfort Ave Beer Depot serves some of the best BBQ dishes in the city. Upon arrival, you’ll immediately see the restaurant’s famous barrel smokers outside. Some say you can even smell the scent of smoked meat all along Frankfort Ave. 

On the menu, you’ll find a wide variety of sandwiches, appetizers, and specials. Our favorite dishes are the Smash Loaf and Smoked White Meat Chicken. You can also order meat by the pound. Planning a big party? Frankfort Ave Beer Depot offers 20-person, 50-person, and 100-pound packages! 

“My husband loves their ribs and I have to convince him he can only physically eat a half rib serving since he is only one person. He would try to eat a full slab if I let him.” - Yelp Review

7. Doc Crow's Southern Smokehouse & Raw Bar

Spacious restaurant specializing in BBQ dishes and other classic Southern cuisine

Doc’s Chicken platter is definitely going to fill you up. Image courtesy of Yelp.

127 W Main St | Downtown, East Main | doccrows.com

Looking for a unique and trendy spot to get your next dinner? Doc Crow’s Southern Smokehouse & Raw Bar offers a taste of the South through its award-winning menu. Housed inside the Bonnie Bros. Distillers warehouse, the restaurant also offers a charming and rustic atmosphere. 

From its signature BBQ plates to its fresh seafood, Doc Crow’s offers a truly Southern menu. Some of their most popular dishes include the Seasoned Pork Rinds, Beef Brisket Sandwich, and Smokehouse Sampler. All of the meats are smoked in-house daily. In addition to its fine food selection, the restaurant also features a large selection of bourbon and cocktails. 

“I ordered the house salad with the beef brisket sandwich while my husband got the beef brisket dinner and some peel and eat Cajun shrimp. Everything was delicious! If you want some more "upscale" BBQ, this is a great place to stop!” - Yelp Review

8. Hammerhead’s 

Charming pub that offers a fine selection of BBQ and beer

Photo of Hammerheads - Louisville, KY, United States
Treat yourself to some ribs. You deserve it! Image courtesy of Yelp.

921 Swan St | Germantown | louisvillehammerheads.com

Don’t underestimate Hammerhead’s. Sometimes smaller is better. Housed inside a small but cozy pub, Hammerhead’s serves some of the best BBQ dishes in Louisville. 

If you’re hungry and in the mood for an appetizer, we recommend starting your meal off with some Sliders. They can be filled with duck, pork belly, NashHot pork belly, brisket, or pork. BBQ sandwiches are also available and are served on a potato bun. Love ribs? Hammerhead’s also serves BBQ Lamb Ribs and Smoked Baby Back Ribs. It’s a BBQ lover’s heaven!  

“Everything we had was AMAZING. We started with the mac n cheese balls which were fried to a perfect crisp and so delicious, I'm dreaming about them still. Their French fries were SO good and a perfect combo with literally any sandwich or burger on their menu. ” - Yelp Review

9. City Barbeque

Counter-serve dig known for its classical BBQ dishes

9429 Viking Center Dr | Louisville | citybbq.com

This display would satisfy any party. Image courtesy of America’s Best Racing

On our list of the top BBQ spots in Louisville is City Barbeque. This popular counter-serve chain is known for its classic BBQ dishes and rustic dining room.

From its sandwiches to its ribs, all of the restaurant’s dishes are served fresh and to the highest standards. Want a little bit of everything? We recommend sharing the Judge’s Sampler with a friend. This popular entree includes a quarter chicken, half slab of ribs, pulled pork, beef brisket, two sides, two pieces of cornbread, and Texas toast! 

“We've been to City Barbecue a number of times and have always had a good time and good service. As soon as you pull in the parking lot you can smell the smoke, and it means you're in for something good.” - Yelp Review

10. Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse

Famous BBQ food you don’t want to miss

434 S 4th St | Louisville | 4thstlive.com/eat-and-drink/guy-fieris-smokehouse

Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse sells “Real Deal” BBQ. The recipes come straight from Guy’s championship BBQ Team. They are known as the “Motley Que,” and they serve creative takes on regional specialties and BBQ inspired recipes. 

Everything they serve is made fresh daily, along with their house made BBQ sauces. Guy Fieri is one of the most recognizable chefs in the country and his food is famous for a reason. So if you like BBQ and famous food, this is a place you should definitely stop in to try!

“Delicious food!  My husband and I came to town for a festival and ate there before, and it was a great idea. I had brisket, he had pulled pork and both were really good. Definitely recommend it!”–Yelp Review

11. Mission BBQ 

BBQ chain with great food that comes with a side of patriotism

4609 Shelbyville | Louisville | mission-bbq.com

Mission BBQ has been serving great American BBQ 2011 and making sure to remind everyone of the food that makes this country great. The founders traveled across the country to find the secrets of BBQ and now share everything they’ve learned with the Louisville area. 

They serve authentic BBQ made from the freshest ingredients, and it is all served in their ultra patriotic dining room where you’ll find tributes to different people that have contributed a lot to this country. They are very fond of serving those who have served our country and salute the flag every day at lunch time. 

“This was our second visit to Mission BBQ. This place is sooo good. The meat is delicious and tender. The potato salad is just right. A great variety of bbq sauces is on the table and the staff are super friendly. Get the moist brisket sandwich. You will wish you had room for a second one.”–Yelp Review

13. Rubbies BBQ and Brew

A favorite spot for locals and visitors

This will make a beyond filling meal. Image courtesy of TripAdvisor

6905 Southside Dr | Louisville | rubbies.net

Rubbies boasts a variety of options and signature dishes for visitors to choose from. If you’re a BBQ lover, you will likely enjoy everything from their hickory smoked BBQ pork, double decker rubbie burger, and more. Everyone who goes to Rubbies is likely to find something they enjoy on the menu. 

Rubbies has a great atmosphere. They have live music on the weekends and generally have a positive and comfortable atmosphere that make people want to visit again and again. It is a unique BBQ grill that has made Rubbies a favorite of locals and travelers alike. Their most popular items include Rubbie wings, sizzling steaks, and Kentucky hot brown. 

“Food BOMB! Service Great! Sides BOMB! Our waitresses were super kind! You can taste the love in the food every bite! First time coming here and all my friends thought this place was a great find! We are from California and now we have our favorite go to spot in Louisville! Thank you Rubbies.”–Yelp Review

14. Bootleg BBQ 

Great BBQ served with some down home hospitality

9704 Old Bardstown Rd | Louisville | bootlegbbq.com

Bootleg BBQ has been a staple in Kentucky for over 30 years. This restaurant offers signature “Bootleg Style” offerings made from food straight from the farm and made with old school cooking techniques. Their style draws heavily from home style country cooking and Kentucky’s long history of smoked and cured meats. 

Bootleg draws in local customers and customers who are just passing through. It’s a place you won’t regret visiting during a visit to Louisville. You’ll find pork, chicken, brisket, baked beans, and mac and cheese among other traditional BBQ foods. You’ll most likely end up being glad you came for some great BBQ along with some down home hospitality!

“You really can't go wrong with anything on the menu. Absolutely my favorite BBQ anywhere. We go there for the Hot n Sticky wings before games and family gatherings. We get the smoked turkey breast and double smoked spiral ham for holidays. The cobblers taste homemade. It's worth the drive.”–Yelp Review

15. Back Deck BBQ

Some of the best BBQ in Louisville

801 W Kenwood Dr | Louisville | backdeckbbqllc.com

Back Deck BBQ prides themselves on being one of the best BBQ locations in Louisville. It has been inspired by foods from states all across the country, and has used that inspiration to bring customers amazing food. The cooks wake up every day at 3 a.m. to get started on smoking everything fresh. They serve quality food alongside quality service and are a popular destination for those reasons. 

“If you want a great locally owned place to eat BBQ then you gotta check this place out. It's worth the drive to have his ribs. You don't even need sauce for them. They are so tender and moist. All his food is fresh. Nothing frozen.  Please check them out.”–Yelp Review 

It should come as no surprise that a city like Louisville has some of the best BBQ restaurants in the country. Whether you’re craving a pulled pork sandwich or a plate of ribs, you’ll easily find what you’re looking for in this exciting Southern city. What BBQ restaurants are you planning to visit next? Let us know in the comment section below!

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Trae Bodge

Trae Bodge is the shopping expert here at GiftYa. Trae helps people find the best deals and ideas on popular new items to purchase.

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