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Barbecue from Kerlin BBQ
Barbecue from Kerlin BBQ
Kerlin BBQ/Facebook

13 Essential Barbecue Restaurants in Austin

All the briskets, ribs, and sausages a person could ever want

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Barbecue from Kerlin BBQ
| Kerlin BBQ/Facebook

Barbecue is a way of life in Texas, there’s just no way around it. The nationally recognized smoked meat scene found in the Austin area is so important that pitmaster Aaron Franklin even won a James Beard Award.

Here is Eater’s updated definitive guide to the finest barbecue in Austin, including places with and without lines, outdoor picnic table seating and indoor table service, restaurants and food trucks, and all the briskets, ribs, and sausages a person could ever want. This means Franklin Barbecue, La Barbecue, Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ, the Austin outpost of Black's Barbecue, and many others. Brisket is naturally recommended from all of the restaurants and trucks below.

For other smoked meats needs, Eater Austin has it covered: there's the barbecue heatmap, Hill Country picks, excellent ribs, best sandwiches, stellar sides, desserts, and more. Then there's the Austin barbecue primer and a guide to the barbecue capital of the world, Lockhart.

As with all businesses right now, be sure to call ahead to make sure each restaurant/truck is still open or if there are updates on current offerings and service models, as things are changing constantly. Be sure to wear a mask, tip well, and, if you’re ordering delivery, try to order directly from the restaurant/truck themselves.

The latest CDC guidance for vaccinated diners during the COVID-19 outbreak is here; dining out still carries risks for unvaccinated diners and workers. Please be aware of changing local rules, and check individual restaurant websites for any additional restrictions such as mask requirements. Find a local vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Interstellar BBQ

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12233 Ranch Rd 620 N suite 105
Austin, TX 78750
(512) 382-6248
Visit Website

The Anderson Mill-adjacent restaurant from John Bates and Brandon Martinez (of the long-gone Noble Sandwich Co.) is a more recent and excellent addition to Texas’s barbecue field. The menu meats by weight (including sliced or chopped brisket), sandwiches, and tacos. The sides are particularly great as well.
Service-style: Indoor and outdoor dine-in service, online takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. until everything is sold out, Wednesday through Sunday.
Recommended orders: Pork ribs, beef kielbasa, tomato-zucchini salad, smoked scalloped potatoes

Peach tea-glazed pork belly from Interstellar BBQ
Peach tea-glazed pork belly from Interstellar BBQ
Interstellar BBQ/Facebook

2. Stiles Switch BBQ & Brew

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6610 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78757
Austin, TX 78757
(512) 380-9199
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The Brentwood barbecue restaurant is a prime spot with indoor seating that is focused on good smoked meats, plenty of daily specials like smoked prime rib, sandwiches, and crispy half-chickens with Alabama white sauce, and solid desserts. Lead pitmaster Lance Kirkpatrick trained under Bob Mueller in Taylor. There’s a second location up in Cedar Park, and a Cajun-focused offshoot out in Dripping Springs.
Service-style: Indoor and patio dine-in service, online curbside pickup orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday; 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Recommended orders: beef ribs, pork ribs, turkey, barbecue sandwiches, peach cobbler

Barbecue from Stiles Switch
Barbecue from Stiles Switch
Stiles Switch BBQ & Brew/Facebook

3. Black's Barbecue

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3110 Guadalupe St
Austin, TX 78705
(888) 632-8225
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The Austin branch of the renowned Lockhart barbecue destination will have to do for those who can’t make the trip down to the smoked meat capital of Texas. Find the same very good menu at this local spot from the Black family.
Service-style: Indoor and outdoor dine-in service, online takeout orders, third-party deliveries
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Recommended orders: beef ribs, brisket, barbecue chicken, sausages

Barbecue from Black’s Barbecue
Barbecue from Black’s Barbecue
Black’s Barbecue/Facebook

4. Sam's BBQ

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2000 E 12th St
Austin, TX 78702
(512) 478-0378
Visit Website

For a taste of old Austin, head to the Central East Austin barbecue institution. Sam Campbell opened his namesake business in the late 1950s; after his death, Dan Mays Sr. took over in 1977, and now his son Brian Mays oversees the establishment.

Service-style: online pickup orders
Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday and Monday; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday
Recommended orders: Mutton, brisket

5. Franklin Barbecue

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900 E 11th St
Austin, TX 78702
(512) 653-1187
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Home of the world-renowned brisket, this barbecue restaurant from co-owners James Beard Award-winning pitmaster Aaron Franklin and Stacy Franklin has been operating with a different format throughout the pandemic. Gone are the lines (for now), instead people place curbside pickup orders 42 days in advance, making it easier to secure that brisket plus other smoked meats, sandwiches, sides, and pies. For an Asian-y take on the famed brisket, head over to Loro, Franklin’s other restaurant in collaboration with lauded Austin Japanese restaurant Uchi.
Service-style: Online curbside pickups; national shipping; dine-in will be available in September
Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.
Recommended orders: brisket, beef ribs, turkey, sausage

Barbecue from Franklin Barbecue
Barbecue from Franklin Barbecue
Franklin Barbecue [Official]

6. Micklethwait Craft Meats

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1309 Rosewood Ave
Austin, TX 78702
(512) 791-5961
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Pitmasters owner Tom Micklethwait and Ren Garcia serve up thoughtful smoked meats at this Central East Austin food truck. Expect the staples (Tex-Czech sausage, beef ribs) to uncommon barbecue meats (pulled lamb) to specials (tacos, burgers, pork chops). The standout sides round out the meal
Service-style: Outdoor dine-in service, online and call-ahead pickup orders, national shipping
Hours: 11 a.m. until sold out Tuesday through Sunday.
Recommended orders: sausage, pulled lamb

Barbecue and sides from Micklethwait Craft Meats
Barbecue and sides from Micklethwait Craft Meats
Micklethwait Craft Meats/Facebook

7. Terry Black's BBQ

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1003 Barton Springs Rd
Austin, TX 78704
(512) 394-5899
Visit Website

Other members of the famed Black family made their mark on Austin with barbecue, too. Twin sons Mike and Mark Black honor their father with their Bouldin Creek smoked meats restaurant. The typical meats are served by the pound, sandwich, or family meal-style, along with sides, beer, and even wine.
Service-style: Indoor and outdoor dine-in service, online pickup orders, national shipping
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Recommended orders: brisket, smoked turkey, ribs

8. Distant Relatives

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3508 E 7th St
Austin, TX 78702
(512) 717-2504
Visit Website

While a very recent newcomer to the city’s barbecue world, chef Damien Brockway and his Govalle truck have already made a huge impression. The menu honors and explores what modern African-American fare really is with a Texas lens, which leads to items such as pulled pork served alongside tamarind barbecue sauce and brisket with a coriander sauce.
Service-style: Outdoor dine-in service, in-person and call-ahead takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: Brisket, pulled pork, burnt ends and red beans, green mango slaw

9. Kerlin BBQ

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2207 E Cesar Chavez St
Austin, TX 78702
(512) 412-5588
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Brisket stuffed into kolaches is a Texan’s dream come true, and the co-owners of the Holly barbecue truck, pitmaster Bill Kerlin and Amelis Kerlin, made that magic happen. Alas, the klobásníky are only available on Sundays, but that’s not an issue, since the regular barbecue menu is just as great.
Service-style: Outdoor dine-in service, to-go orders, email preorders at orders@kerlinbbq.com with 72-hour notice
Hours: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. or until sold out Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, barbecue kolache, pork belly burnt ends

Barbecue kolaches from Kerlin BBQ
Barbecue kolaches from Kerlin BBQ
Kerlin BBQ/Facebook

10. La Barbecue

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2401 E Cesar Chavez St
Austin, TX 78702
(512) 605-9696
Visit Website

The Holly barbecue restaurant from LeAnn Mueller has a new permanent home. It smokes the same beautiful briskets, ribs, and house-made sausages, plus sake, plum wine, and Aperol spritzes.
Service-style: Indoor and patio dine-in service, online pickup orders
Hours: 11 a.m to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, pulled pork, beef ribs, sausages, Bobby Dawg, shells and cheese

The Bobby Dawg at La Barbecue
The Bobby Dawg at La Barbecue
La Barbecue/Facebook

11. Brown's Bar-B-Que

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1901 South Lamar Boulevard
Austin, TX 78704
(512) 517-8520
Visit Website

It’s hard to miss the bright red trailer outside South Austin spot Corner Bar, serving simple, high-quality meats. Pitmaster Daniel Brown serves what he calls “old-school barbecue” where the goal is “to give people great food for a cheap price.” Pair the smoked meat plate with drinks from the bar.
Service-style: Host site Corner Bar is open for on-site services with indoor and outdoor seating, in-person takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, pork ribs, chicken, pulled pork sandwich

A barbecue plate from Brown’s Bar-B-Que
A barbecue plate from Brown’s Bar-B-Que
Brown’s Bar-B-Que/Facebook

12. Leroy & Lewis

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121 Pickle Rd
Austin, TX 78704
(512) 945-9882
Visit Website

The new-school barbecue trailer from pitmaster Evan LeRoy offers up twists on the usual smoked meats classics. Think beef cheeks, halved avocados stuffed with barbacoa, cauliflower burnt ends, cheddar cheesecake, and more.
Service-style: Host site Cosmic Coffee is open for outdoor dine-in service; in-person takeout orders; online preorder takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: beef cheeks, barbacoa, burger

LeRoy & Lewis’s barbecue tray
LeRoy & Lewis’s barbecue tray
Logan Crable

13. Valentina's Tex Mex BBQ

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11500 Manchaca Rd, Austin
TX, 78748

The far south Austin food truck from pitmaster Miguel Vidal mashes up two of the city’s favorite foods into one mega-meal. Delicious meats like smoked brisket or pulled pork can be found in tacos or sandwiches.
Service-style: Online ordering only; dine-in service is available
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. or until sold out, Wednesday through Friday; 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. or until sold out, Saturday and Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, Real Deal Holyfield breakfast taco, smoked brisket taco

Barbecue from Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ
Barbecue from Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ
Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ [Official]

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1. Interstellar BBQ

12233 Ranch Rd 620 N suite 105, Austin, TX 78750
Peach tea-glazed pork belly from Interstellar BBQ
Peach tea-glazed pork belly from Interstellar BBQ
Interstellar BBQ/Facebook

The Anderson Mill-adjacent restaurant from John Bates and Brandon Martinez (of the long-gone Noble Sandwich Co.) is a more recent and excellent addition to Texas’s barbecue field. The menu meats by weight (including sliced or chopped brisket), sandwiches, and tacos. The sides are particularly great as well.
Service-style: Indoor and outdoor dine-in service, online takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. until everything is sold out, Wednesday through Sunday.
Recommended orders: Pork ribs, beef kielbasa, tomato-zucchini salad, smoked scalloped potatoes

12233 Ranch Rd 620 N suite 105
Austin, TX 78750

2. Stiles Switch BBQ & Brew

6610 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78757, Austin, TX 78757
Barbecue from Stiles Switch
Barbecue from Stiles Switch
Stiles Switch BBQ & Brew/Facebook

The Brentwood barbecue restaurant is a prime spot with indoor seating that is focused on good smoked meats, plenty of daily specials like smoked prime rib, sandwiches, and crispy half-chickens with Alabama white sauce, and solid desserts. Lead pitmaster Lance Kirkpatrick trained under Bob Mueller in Taylor. There’s a second location up in Cedar Park, and a Cajun-focused offshoot out in Dripping Springs.
Service-style: Indoor and patio dine-in service, online curbside pickup orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday; 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Recommended orders: beef ribs, pork ribs, turkey, barbecue sandwiches, peach cobbler

6610 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78757
Austin, TX 78757

3. Black's Barbecue

3110 Guadalupe St, Austin, TX 78705
Barbecue from Black’s Barbecue
Barbecue from Black’s Barbecue
Black’s Barbecue/Facebook

The Austin branch of the renowned Lockhart barbecue destination will have to do for those who can’t make the trip down to the smoked meat capital of Texas. Find the same very good menu at this local spot from the Black family.
Service-style: Indoor and outdoor dine-in service, online takeout orders, third-party deliveries
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Recommended orders: beef ribs, brisket, barbecue chicken, sausages

3110 Guadalupe St
Austin, TX 78705

4. Sam's BBQ

2000 E 12th St, Austin, TX 78702

For a taste of old Austin, head to the Central East Austin barbecue institution. Sam Campbell opened his namesake business in the late 1950s; after his death, Dan Mays Sr. took over in 1977, and now his son Brian Mays oversees the establishment.

Service-style: online pickup orders
Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday and Monday; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday
Recommended orders: Mutton, brisket

2000 E 12th St
Austin, TX 78702

5. Franklin Barbecue

900 E 11th St, Austin, TX 78702
Barbecue from Franklin Barbecue
Barbecue from Franklin Barbecue
Franklin Barbecue [Official]

Home of the world-renowned brisket, this barbecue restaurant from co-owners James Beard Award-winning pitmaster Aaron Franklin and Stacy Franklin has been operating with a different format throughout the pandemic. Gone are the lines (for now), instead people place curbside pickup orders 42 days in advance, making it easier to secure that brisket plus other smoked meats, sandwiches, sides, and pies. For an Asian-y take on the famed brisket, head over to Loro, Franklin’s other restaurant in collaboration with lauded Austin Japanese restaurant Uchi.
Service-style: Online curbside pickups; national shipping; dine-in will be available in September
Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.
Recommended orders: brisket, beef ribs, turkey, sausage

900 E 11th St
Austin, TX 78702

6. Micklethwait Craft Meats

1309 Rosewood Ave, Austin, TX 78702
Barbecue and sides from Micklethwait Craft Meats
Barbecue and sides from Micklethwait Craft Meats
Micklethwait Craft Meats/Facebook

Pitmasters owner Tom Micklethwait and Ren Garcia serve up thoughtful smoked meats at this Central East Austin food truck. Expect the staples (Tex-Czech sausage, beef ribs) to uncommon barbecue meats (pulled lamb) to specials (tacos, burgers, pork chops). The standout sides round out the meal
Service-style: Outdoor dine-in service, online and call-ahead pickup orders, national shipping
Hours: 11 a.m. until sold out Tuesday through Sunday.
Recommended orders: sausage, pulled lamb

1309 Rosewood Ave
Austin, TX 78702

7. Terry Black's BBQ

1003 Barton Springs Rd, Austin, TX 78704

Other members of the famed Black family made their mark on Austin with barbecue, too. Twin sons Mike and Mark Black honor their father with their Bouldin Creek smoked meats restaurant. The typical meats are served by the pound, sandwich, or family meal-style, along with sides, beer, and even wine.
Service-style: Indoor and outdoor dine-in service, online pickup orders, national shipping
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Recommended orders: brisket, smoked turkey, ribs

1003 Barton Springs Rd
Austin, TX 78704

8. Distant Relatives

3508 E 7th St, Austin, TX 78702

While a very recent newcomer to the city’s barbecue world, chef Damien Brockway and his Govalle truck have already made a huge impression. The menu honors and explores what modern African-American fare really is with a Texas lens, which leads to items such as pulled pork served alongside tamarind barbecue sauce and brisket with a coriander sauce.
Service-style: Outdoor dine-in service, in-person and call-ahead takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: Brisket, pulled pork, burnt ends and red beans, green mango slaw

3508 E 7th St
Austin, TX 78702

9. Kerlin BBQ

2207 E Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX 78702
Barbecue kolaches from Kerlin BBQ
Barbecue kolaches from Kerlin BBQ
Kerlin BBQ/Facebook

Brisket stuffed into kolaches is a Texan’s dream come true, and the co-owners of the Holly barbecue truck, pitmaster Bill Kerlin and Amelis Kerlin, made that magic happen. Alas, the klobásníky are only available on Sundays, but that’s not an issue, since the regular barbecue menu is just as great.
Service-style: Outdoor dine-in service, to-go orders, email preorders at orders@kerlinbbq.com with 72-hour notice
Hours: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. or until sold out Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, barbecue kolache, pork belly burnt ends

2207 E Cesar Chavez St
Austin, TX 78702

10. La Barbecue

2401 E Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX 78702
The Bobby Dawg at La Barbecue
The Bobby Dawg at La Barbecue
La Barbecue/Facebook

The Holly barbecue restaurant from LeAnn Mueller has a new permanent home. It smokes the same beautiful briskets, ribs, and house-made sausages, plus sake, plum wine, and Aperol spritzes.
Service-style: Indoor and patio dine-in service, online pickup orders
Hours: 11 a.m to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, pulled pork, beef ribs, sausages, Bobby Dawg, shells and cheese

2401 E Cesar Chavez St
Austin, TX 78702

11. Brown's Bar-B-Que

1901 South Lamar Boulevard, Austin, TX 78704
A barbecue plate from Brown’s Bar-B-Que
A barbecue plate from Brown’s Bar-B-Que
Brown’s Bar-B-Que/Facebook

It’s hard to miss the bright red trailer outside South Austin spot Corner Bar, serving simple, high-quality meats. Pitmaster Daniel Brown serves what he calls “old-school barbecue” where the goal is “to give people great food for a cheap price.” Pair the smoked meat plate with drinks from the bar.
Service-style: Host site Corner Bar is open for on-site services with indoor and outdoor seating, in-person takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, pork ribs, chicken, pulled pork sandwich

1901 South Lamar Boulevard
Austin, TX 78704

12. Leroy & Lewis

121 Pickle Rd, Austin, TX 78704
LeRoy & Lewis’s barbecue tray
LeRoy & Lewis’s barbecue tray
Logan Crable

The new-school barbecue trailer from pitmaster Evan LeRoy offers up twists on the usual smoked meats classics. Think beef cheeks, halved avocados stuffed with barbacoa, cauliflower burnt ends, cheddar cheesecake, and more.
Service-style: Host site Cosmic Coffee is open for outdoor dine-in service; in-person takeout orders; online preorder takeout orders
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday
Recommended orders: beef cheeks, barbacoa, burger

121 Pickle Rd
Austin, TX 78704

13. Valentina's Tex Mex BBQ

11500 Manchaca Rd, Austin, TX, 78748
Barbecue from Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ
Barbecue from Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ
Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ [Official]

The far south Austin food truck from pitmaster Miguel Vidal mashes up two of the city’s favorite foods into one mega-meal. Delicious meats like smoked brisket or pulled pork can be found in tacos or sandwiches.
Service-style: Online ordering only; dine-in service is available
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. or until sold out, Wednesday through Friday; 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. or until sold out, Saturday and Sunday
Recommended orders: brisket, Real Deal Holyfield breakfast taco, smoked brisket taco

11500 Manchaca Rd, Austin
TX, 78748

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