This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through an affiliate link, I will earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for your support.

The Best Louisiana Food Guide to Tantalize your Tastebuds

OK, I only went to a couple of places in Louisiana – I didn’t even make it to the State Capital of Baton Rouge – so this Louisiana food guide is by no means extensive, but I ate so many incredible meals in the two places that I did go to in Louisiana – Lafayette and New Orleans – that I wanted to write a post about the food anyway.

The food scene in this delicious state blew my mind. Every single meal I had during my week in Louisiana was above average, some were so good that I’m sure I will still be dreaming and drooling about them for years to come.

It was honestly the best eating week of my life – even beating Thailand, Greece, and Vietnam which I didn’t think would be possible.

Really, the Louisiana food scene is that incredible.

The French Quarter in New Orleans, Louisiana

The distinctive Cajun style of cooking is a big part of why the food here is so damn good. There are so many punchy flavors, it’s very seafood-heavy – great for a non-red meat eater like me.

It is influenced by a variety of cuisines, including French, Spanish, African, and Native American – but incorporating local ingredients like okra, sassafras, alligator, and catfish. It’s a mashup made in heaven.

The Cajuns are descended from the displaced Acadians, French Settlers who were driven out of the Nova Scotia/New Brunswick region of Canada when it came under British rule in the 18th century.

Just like in Atlantic Canada where they adapted traditional French cuisine to accommodate local ingredients and cooking traditions, so they did again in their new home of Louisiana.

Creole food is similar to Cajun food but it is more refined, it’s known more as city people’s food rather than the rustic country style of Cajun food.

So here we go, the best Louisiana food that we ate during our time there.

Louisiana food guide map

Check out my interactive Louisiana food map for Lafayette and New Orleans to help plan your Louisiana foodie trip!

The Best Food in Lafayette

There are so many exciting places to eat in Lafayette! We only had one night in the city but we loved the Lafayette restaurants that we did get to try.

Lafayette is the heart of Cajun country and we got to experience some outstanding Cajun food at the Bon Temps Grill, then had some stellar southern comfort food at the hole-in-the-wall Creole Lunch House. 

New Orleans Riverfront

Bon Temps Grill

Located on a commercial street on the outskirts of Lafayette, Bon Temps Grill may look unassuming from the outside, but it is cozy and welcoming inside, and offers some of the best Cajun food in Lafayette.

We shared the seafood stuffed mushrooms as an appetizer and they were incredible, packed with crawfish and shrimp. My entree was the Crawfish Pot Pie – Crawfish Étouffée topped with a puff pastry crust – accompanied by a sage sweet potato mash, and I really enjoyed that too.

The crab cakes are one of their specialties so I would definitely want to try those if I am lucky enough to go back one day.

Address: 1312 Verot School Rd, Lafayette, LA 70508

Add crawfish to your Louisiana food bucket list

Creole Lunch House

Another unassuming local spot, Creole Lunch House may not look like much and the food may be simple, but it is cooked to perfection and full of flavor.

They offer soul food plate lunches, with a couple of meat choices each day and a few sides, you can pick one meat and two sides and also get a side of cornbread.

I had the baked chicken, yams, mac and cheese, and cornbread, and I was hooked from the first bite. This place far exceeded my expectations – the food truly is cooked with love.

Creole Lunch House is one of the most popular local food places in Lafayette and we could definitely see why.

Address: 713 12th St, Lafayette, LA 70501

Downtown Lafayette, Louisiana

If you are visiting the recreated Acadian village of Vermilionville during your time in Lafayette – and you should, it’s fabulous – Cafe Vermilionville is meant to be a great choice for lunch or dinner.

It offers a range of – you guessed it – Cajun dishes, and is known for doing them very well. They offer a lunch special daily as well as menu items.

The Best Food In New Orleans

Ah, New Orleans. One of the best cities in the world for eating as well as being one of the coolest cities in the US, if not the world!

One of the best reasons to visit New Orleans is the food scene, and we definitely made the most of our five days there, eating all the beignets and sampling local dishes like heavenly charbroiled oysters and New Orleans-style crab cakes. 

There are so many incredible places to eat in New Orleans and although we only scratched the surface, I feel like we got a nice overview of foodie New Orleans, but we still have a whole lot of delicious reasons to return.

Cafe Du Monde

Possibly the most famous place to eat in New Orleans, Cafe Du Monde is known for its beignets – pillowy fried dough squares coated in powdered sugar –  and New Orleans-style Chicory coffee, in fact, there isn’t much else on the menu.

If you go to one place for beignets make it Cafe Du Monde, and if you arrive before 9.30 am you shouldn’t have to wait for a table. The beignets are delightful, the coffee is surprisingly good and the atmosphere can’t be beaten.

Address: 800 Decatur Street 70116 New Orleans

Eating beignets at Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans is the quintessential Louisiana food experience

You should combine your trip to New Orleans with a trip to Charleston too – it’s another beautiful, historic city with incredible dining.


Charbroiled oysters are the name of the game at Drago’s – they invented them after all. We went to the New Orleans riverside location and the place was packed.

The charbroiled oysters were just incredible, packed with cheese, garlic, butter, and herbs then grilled in their shells. We didn’t even think we liked oysters before trying these and Toby has been going on about them to everyone that will listen.

I guess we do love oysters if they are charbroiled. In my opinion, Charbroiled oysters are the number one food to try in New Orleans.

Address: New Orleans and Metairie locations

Eating charbroiled oysters at Drago's in New Orleans is a top Louisiana food experience Source

Mr Ed’s Oyster Bar and Fish House

Mr Ed’s is another top seafood restaurant in New Orleans and we loved every dish we tried there, including their charbroiled oysters, BBQ shrimp served New Orleans style – smothered in a special butter sauce and served in French bread, and fried green tomatoes topped with seafood au gratin.

Mr Ed’s offers solid seafood dishes at a reasonable price. I would definitely recommend Mr Ed’s – it is one of the must-eat places in New Orleans if you love seafood.

Address: Multiple locations in New Orleans

Cafe Beignet

My second stop for beignets was at the cute Royal Street location of Cafe Beignet in the French Quarter. I thought the beignets were just as good as Cafe du Monde’s but the coffee was not as nice.

A good thing about the menu at Cafe Beignet is that there are quite a few items on it so if you want a more substantial meal along with your beignets, you can also order an omelet, a sandwich, or a Cajun specialty dish.

Get there early to avoid long lines and grab a seat on their tropical terrace if it’s a beautiful day.

Address: Multiple locations in New Orleans

Cafe Beignet is a New Orleans institution

Laura’s Candies

You can’t visit New Orleans and not try pralines, and there are so many different places to get them from. I went with Laura’s Candies because they are the oldest Candy Store in New Orleans and they had free samples so I could try them before I bought them.

Pralines are made with pecans, sugar, cream, and butter, and they just melt in your mouth. As well as the original pralines, they also have coconut pralines and chocolate pralines. I just have to warn you – they are highly addictive.

Address: 331 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70130

Laura's Candies offers some of the best pralines in New Orleans  Source

Chef Ron’s Gumbo Stop

We stopped for dinner at Chef Ron’s Gumbo Stop in Metairie, a suburb of New Orleans, on the way back from the River Road Plantations.

There is a range of Cajun and Creole dishes on the menu, as well as a number of different gumbos.

I tried the Shrimp Creole, a delicious shrimp dish cooked in a tomato-based sauce, and the seafood gumbo – both were very good. Chef Ron’s Gumbo Stop is a great choice for gumbo or Cajun and Creole dishes.

Address: 2309 N Causeway Blvd, Metairie, LA 70001

Gumbo at Chef Ron's Gumbo Stop in Metairie is a Louisiana food highlight Source

Mulate’s Cajun Restaurant

If authentic Cajun food and music are what you are after, then Mulate’s Cajun Restaurant delivers – it is one of the best Cajun restaurants in New Orleans.

We just went there for dessert – the pecan pie is phenomenal – but they offer all the Cajun classics here like blackened catfish, fried oysters, and gumbo.

There is live Cajun music every night and it rounds out the full Cajun experience.

Address: 201 Julia Street, New Orleans LA 70130

A Louisiana food staple - pecan pie

Joey K’s

Featured on the Food Network show, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, Joey K’s is a popular Creole Restaurant in the Garden District of New Orleans.

We tried the Fried Green Tomatoes topped with grilled shrimp and remoulade, and the grilled chicken with vegetables and potatoes – both of which were delicious.

They also do a different take on the usually sweet beignets – crab and corn beignets that I would love to try next time.

Joey K’s is a great choice if you are exploring the historic homes and Lafayette Cemetery in the Garden District.

Address: 3001 Magazine Street, New Orleans LA 70115

Historic home in the Garden District of New Orleans

Other restaurants in New Orleans that I heard great things about were Brennan’s for brunch, with delicious menu items on offer like the incredible sounding Eggs Cardinal, which includes shrimp boudin, lobster, and black truffle hollandaise (YUM!).

Also, the refined Commander’s Palace in the Garden District, is well-known for its upmarket Creole cuisine, and is consistently rated as having the best brunch in New Orleans.

I hope this Louisiana Food Guide helps you plan your own eating adventures in Lafayette and New Orleans.

Let me know what incredible New Orleans and Lafayette dining spots I missed – I’ll put them on my list for next time.

Lafayette Cemetery in the Garden District of New Orleans

How To Plan Your Louisiana Food Trip

Where to Stay in Lafayette and New Orleans

In Lafayette, stay at Maison Mouton which offers private rooms, a full Cajun breakfast, and an evening social hour on a historic plantation.

New Orleans has even more options, and if you are looking for budget accommodation, then try the funky and colorful HI New Orleans, which was awarded the 2020 Best New Hostel in the World and offers dorms and private rooms.

For hotel choices in New Orleans, it’s hard to go past the regal Hotel Monteleone. This historic hotel is located a block from Bourbon Street and has a heated rooftop swimming pool, a full-service Spa, Criollo restaurant, and the Carousel Bar onsite. 

If you are interested in going full into the spooky ghosty stuff that New Orleans is known for, stay at the Royal Sonesta Hotel a beautiful historic hotel in the French Quarter where apparitions have been sighted. When you aren’t busy ghost hunting, swim in the stunning courtyard pool, or enjoy an evening of Jazz at the onsite Jazz Bar.

If you prefer staying in a vacation rental, these are my top picks for location, price, and great reviews:

If you liked this post, check out my other food-related posts:


Ultimate Louisiana Food Guide to Lafayette and New Orleans The Best Places to Eat in Louisiana Best Louisiana Food Guide to Whet Your Appetite

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.