Best BBQ in Atlanta GA: 15 Essential Restaurants & BBQ Joints
Usually referred to as the new foodie capital of American South, Atlanta has some of the best dishes in the nation. Most of its restaurants have won awards in various competitions. And they’ve even received national recognition from establishments like the Food Network.
Although Atlanta city is not a popular BBQ city like Memphis and Texas, barbecue is a big deal here! If you ever find yourself craving for some tasty BBQ in Georgia’s capital, check out the following best BBQ in Atlanta GA! And enjoy any type of barbecue you want, starting from Korean BBQ to Texas- and South Carolina-style BBQ!
15 Best BBQ Restaurants in Atlanta GA
Fox Bros BBQ
Address: 1238 Dekalb Avenue, NE, Atlanta, GA 30307
Started by the 2 Fox brothers, Justin and Jonathan in 2007, this BBQ joint immediately became the locals’ favorite spot. Initially, the identical twins started the restaurant as an inviting backyard gathering with good friends, good music, and good food!
The restaurant is hard to miss since it’s located just off Dekalb Av., where Candler Park and Little 5 points meet. And you can even see the large space and crowd from the road.
Some of the items served at the restaurant include; beef short ribs, smoked chicken, and hickory smoked jumbo wings. Other crowd-pleasers at the joint are brisket, pulled meat, mac n’ cheese, St. Louis-style ribs, and Brunswick stew.
For the past years, they have upgraded the patio, increased the joint’s indoor seating capacity, and added a bar. Yet you may find a long waiting line, especially on weekends.
The joint has appeared on various national TV programs including Fox News, TLC, Good Day Atlanta, and The Food Network. This has also played a significant role in cementing it among the top BBQ joints in Atlanta city!
With their consistently delicious and large portions of Texas-style BBQ, there’s no way you’ll leave this family-friendly spot hungry!
Heirloom Market BBQ
Address: 2243 Akers Mill Road SE, Atlanta, Georgia 30339
Heirloom Mark BBQ is owned by chefs Cody Taylor and Jiyeon Lee. They first opened this BBQ joint in 2010 in a congested area near the 75/ 285 northern interchange. This was after Cody and Jiyeon decided to try out something they would love to do. And finally settled on cooking southern cuisine.
The joint serves iconic barbecue foods like rib racks, pulled chicken, and beef brisket. Moreover, they add unique twists to their menu such as spicy Korean meat. You can order sides in individual quarts, pints, and portions, making them ideal for family meals, these sides include BBQ beans, coleslaw and collard greens. If you’re a first-timer at the restaurant, you can a perfect sauce for your taste buds. Because they have 5 variations, including Korean sweet heat and classic mild.
Their smokers are fueled by locally sourced hardwoods. Not forgetting that most ingredients used at the joint are locally sourced from Georgia farmers.
One thing about this joint though, is that you’ll find a long line. But that should not stop you from going to the BBQ since people get their orders quickly.
Also, the joint has only 1 actual table that is meant for seating, located in the middle of the restaurant. With the remaining seating consisting of about 12 bar stools. Therefore, the best thing is to make your order to go!
Daddy D’z Barbeque Joynt
Address: 264 Memorial Drive SE, Atlanta, GA 30312
Over the years, Daddy D’z BBQ Joynt has won several titles and awards, including ‘The best BBQ in Atlanta GA’ award. The New York Times even rated as the No. 1 BBQ joint in the city. Not to forget that there was a time it was the only Atlanta BBQ joint featured by the Food Network!
They are also among the few BBQ joints in the city that hand-smoke their meats on an oak and hickory pit. Another thing that separates this joint from the competition is that its menu has unique items like the Famous Que Wraps.
While this BBQ joint is not that appealing, its barbecue is unmatched! Just take a seat, taste their tasty BBQ and you’ll never have to look for another BBQ place in the city. Whether you want fried mushrooms, chicken tenders, shrimps, wings or barbecue wraps, you’ll get it here!
Address: 1190 N Highland Avenue NE, Ste B, Atlanta
Situated behind North Highland’s VaHi USPS Office, DBA BBQ is one of those joints you must visit to know it exists. But, it’s certainly worth your time to check this place out! And experience their great hospitality, spacious dining room, bourbon cocktails, and tasty smoked wings!
This family-owned bar & restaurant serves southern-inspired food and barbecue. Their menu offers a range of drinks, sides, and meats to satisfy any BBQ craving you may have. Burgers and sausages are made from in-house ground meats, while meats are cured and smoked in-house regularly.
The joint seasons the meats with the freshest flavors and superior ingredients. Something that the staff members have perfected over the years to ensure that you get the most delicious meals in Atlanta!
Address: 3420 Piedmont Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30305
Lovies BBQ is owned and run by native Atlantans Drew and Nate. Being raised in an area where BBQ is a way of life, Drew and Nate wanted to serves the same in a BBQ restaurant. And they succeeded, seeing that their restaurant is among the top BBQ spots in the city!
This joint mixes fresh, superior ingredients with traditional cooking and preparation techniques. The best thing about Lovies is that they’ve got the usual slow grilled and smoked dishes for dinner/lunch and a comprehensive breakfast menu. With some of their popular items being tender biscuit sandwich, fried chicken, and breakfast plate with brisket, grits, sausage, eggs, and hash browns.
You’ll also love the comfortable atmosphere at the restaurant, where you can relax with your family and friends as you enjoy delicious food!
Address: 4920 Roswell Road Fountain Oaks Shopping Center, Atlanta GA 30342
With 3 locations across the Atlanta area, Pig-N-Chik is among the most popular BBQ joint in the city today. And it’s well known for its non-traditional menu items and incredible classic BBQ. The tender St. Louis ribs served at the joint has won various BBQ awards. It’s located at Briarcliff Road, Fountain Oaks shopping center, and Chamblee.
I recommend that you try out their ribs without adding BBQ sauce, as they’re smoked to perfection! But if you want to add some sauce, there are homemade sauces at the joint. You can also order their beef brisket, smoked salmon, barbecue meat, chicken wings, and turkey alongside various salads and sides. Another great thing with this joint is that they offer take out, dine-in, and delivery!
The cozy hospitality and home-style cooking of this joint will make your dining experience quite enjoyable. Make sure to check out any of their locations and taste their moist ribs, or brisket! And you’ll understand why I could not leave this local BBQ joint on this list!
Address: 1203 Collier Road NW, Atlanta
Owned by Stephen Franklin, DAS BBQ restaurant invites guests to gather around the fires while enjoying a succulent and slow-cooked barbecue. Thus creating an interactive family BBQ experience, you’ll not experience anywhere else in Atlanta.
Besides the delicious dining, you can request a tour around their smoke shed and see how everything is done! Their sandwiches and meats range from sausage and brisket by the link to BBQ meat plates and sandwiches.
Not to forget that the restaurant offers a special menu for desserts and younger diners. So, if you’re looking for a kid-friendly BBQ joint in Atlanta, now you know where to go to!
You’ll also be glad to know that there is both outdoor and indoor seating. However, this barbecue joint is not as popular as other joints in the city. Therefore, you’ll not wait in line for long since the waiting time is very reasonable!
Yet even with shorter waiting lines, their barbecue sells out early. So, ensure that you go to the joint early if you don’t want to miss their delicious ribs, pulled meat, chicken, and turkey!
Fat Matt’s Rib Shack
Address: 1811 Piedmont Avenue, NE, Atlanta, GA 30324
From the name, ‘Fat Matt’s Rib Shack’, you can easily tell that ribs are this joint’s specialty. However, barbecued chicken is a favorite as well.
Since its establishment in 1990, Fat Matt’s Rib Shack has pleased many BBQ lovers with its popular ribs. Over the years, the joint has become a favorite spot for locals. Mainly because of its perfect vinegar sauce and authentic smoky meats.
In addition to their barbecue, you can enjoy their sides including baked beans, macaroni n’ cheese, coleslaw, and potato salad. All of which comes at a very reasonable price.
The joint also offers tons of merchandise because of popular demand. Hence, guests that go to this restaurant go home with bumper stickers, t-shirts, and beer cozies to remind them of this amazing spot! Even better, you can buy bottles of their secret sauce and add it to your home barbecues!
Moreover, this casual, family-friendly counter service BBQ restaurant plays fantastic live blues music every night. So, if you and your guests for a place to relax and feast on a flavorful BBQ, this is the ideal BBQ spot for you!
Twin Smokers BBQ
Address: 300 Marietta Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30313
If you want the best BBQ in Downtown, your best bet is to go to this spot on Marietta Street. The owner of this restaurant, Legacy Ventures, run by the same people behind Stats, Max’s, Der Biergarten, etc. if you get a chance to go to this restaurant, make sure you try out their heavily spiced sausage, beef rib, and juicy brisket!
The mouthwatering dishes offered at this Atlanta restaurant are inspired by the traditional Georgia-style BBQ. If you’re a first-timer at the joint, I suggest you start with their side of brisket chili, side salad, smoked wings, or cornbread. And end your meal with a cookie, rice Krispie treat, or a banana pudding on the dessert menu. If you’ve kids don’t leave them behind since this joint has a kid’s menu, which includes a side, drink, meat and dessert.
Just like the name suggests, Twin smoker has 2 different smokers. One for chicken and another one for beef. What’s different about the 2 smokers? Well, the beef smoker is fueled with post oak and mesquite, while the chicken is fueled with white oak and hickory.
It’s also worth noting that the menu of this joint is equally diverse. So, whether you want Texas mainstays, southern-style favorites, or Midwest barbecue, Twin Smokers has got you covered!
Zeigler’s BBQ & Catering
Address: 3451 Cobb Pkwy NW #13th, Acworth, GA 30101
Zeiglers’ BBQ & Catering Co. is among the lesser-known BBQ joints in Atlanta. Yet they offer good catering services for both private and corporate events. Within the past few years, this BBQ restaurant has won different awards, including the 2007’s Georgia State Reserve Grand Championship.
Although pulled meat offered at the restaurant is simple, it’s one of the best in the entire city. And their sides are also terrific. Whether you love to compliment your smoked meat with mac n’ cheese, baked beans, potato salad, or coleslaw, it’s all up to you! In addition to their pulled meat, you can order ribs, wings or chicken smoked using pecan wood.
This restaurant is located in Acworth, a 40-minute drive north of Atlanta. Once you take your first bite of their rosy-pink smoke meat, you will be convinced that it was worth the drive.
They rub all their BBQ meats with Bryon’s Butt rub. And you can see it displayed in the restaurant. The meat is then taken to the Southern Pride smoker and smoking using pecan wood.
If you’re looking for a relaxed and friendly atmosphere in Atlanta, check out this family-owned establishment!
Address: 1976 Hosea L. Williams Drive NE, Atlanta
While various BBQ joints are serving purely southern BBQ in Atlanta, `Anna’s BBQ is the best option. Located in the Kirkwood neighborhood, this restaurant was opened by Ann Phelps in 2013. Surprisingly, when Ann opened this restaurant, she didn’t have any prior professional barbecue experience.
Today, the joint has long waiting for lines from people craving to taste the restaurant’s turkey ribs, and brisket. Not to forget, you can also order their mac n’ cheese. Additionally, Anna’s offers some non-traditional barbecues like BBQ nachos.
The casual space has some indoor seating as well as outdoor seating at the patio out front. While their menu can be amazing, I recommend that you start with their sandwich. The meat is well-seasoned and juicy.
All these offerings come at affordable prices. Just try out this family-style BBQ joint and, trust me, you’ll keep coming back anytime you’re in Atlanta!
Grand Champion BBQ
Address: 4401 Shallowford Rd #168, Roswell, GA 30075
Grand Champion BBQ was first opened in Roswell by friends Robert Owens and Gregory Vivier in 2011. Since then the restaurant has expanded and it’s currently available in multiple locations, including Atlanta, Milton, and other locations.
These restaurants have received various awards from Zagat, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Atlanta Magazine. Some of the popular choices at the joints include smoked sausage sandwiches, baby back ribs, and beef short ribs. To complement your meal, order their delicious sides like mac n’ cheese, Southern lasagna, collard greens and coleslaw.
Besides serving their award-winning BBQ, the restaurant focuses on natural meat flavors accompanied by savory and traditional side items. They smoke their meat overnight and serve fresh meats every day until they run out.
This restaurant is also a great option if you’ve kids since you can make your order and enjoy it in their large open dining space. However, if you want to enjoy their twice-smoked beef sausage or succulent brisket, get there early before they’re sold out! Also, make sure you order their banana pudding and man n’ cheese dish!
Dave Poe’s BBQ
Address: 660 Whitlock Avenue NW, Marietta, GA
After preparing to start a legendary BBQ since 1975, Dave Poe finally opened his BBQ restaurant in 2009. Since then, the restaurant has won various BBQ awards and it’s among the best bbq restaurants in Atlanta GA.
But that’s not what makes this joint unique from the competition! First of all, you’ll find all the sides and meats you’d expect to find in a BBQ joint here. Besides serving the traditional BBQ mains and sides, this restaurant also offers ‘redneck lasagna’. This is mac n’ cheese topped with the Brunswick stew!
Once you go to this joint, you’ll realize that it’s a worthy destination as it will satisfy your barbecue cravings. Dave Poe’s is located about 1 mile of Marietta square. While you may find it hard to choose between their tender St. Louis ribs and baby-back ribs, I recommend that you go with the former.
This BBQ joint has real upped its game over the years. I recommend that you try it out and enjoy their consistently delicious barbecue!
Pit Boss BBQ
Address: 856 Virginia Avenue, Hapeville, GA 30354
The easiest way to determine whether a BBQ joint is good is by checking whether it attracts a large following. Something you can see at Pit Boss BBQ, where most people line up for their savory, spicy, sweet, and smoky barbecue!
Airport district area residents know that this joint has some of the most delicious BBQ in town! This southern pit style BBQ joint is owned by husband-and-wife Wade & Tracy McSwain, who come from Michigan and Alabama. They have been serving their tasty dishes to the residents for about 10 years now. Moreover, they run another take-out only joint in Stockbridge.
After mixing the culinary experienced of their hometown, Wade and Tracy have established a joint that perfectly combines both the southern and northern styles and tastes. Their menu offers several variations of pulled and smoked meats, brisket, and ribs. The meats go well with the fried green beans, white cheddar cheese potatoes, and French fries.
Pit Boss BBQ welcomes everyone to taste their perfectly smoked wings and Angus brisket.
While you may have to line up for some time, their smoked meats are worth the wait!
Community Q BBQ
Address: 1361 Clairmont Rd, Decatur, GA 30033
Through its community-style, Community Q has been serving tasty barbecues for years. The community-style setting makes the dining experience enjoyable and friendly, making it one of the best BBQ spots in Decatur and Atlanta!
At this spot, you’ll find the usual dishes you’d expect at any barbecue restaurant: brisket, St. Louis-style ribs, smoked sausage, etc. The meats are fresh since they’re prepared daily to ensure that you get the most flavorful dining experience! So, what makes this spot unique from its competitors? That would be their sides, including baked beans, Brunswick stew, and Mac n’ cheese. These sides are considered to be the best in the city! After enjoying your meal, wash it all down with their refreshing homemade lemonade!
You’ll find customers lining up at Community Q, waiting to be served their meaty ribs, pulled meat, and mac & cheese. Since the spot doesn’t have table service, you’ve to place your order at the counter. The food is then brought you.
Also, it’s important to note that this joint closes super early, during weekdays as well as weekends. So, make sure you get at the joint early!
Next time you’re looking for some great smoked meat in Atlanta, try out these joints as they’re some of the best BBQ restaurants in Atlanta. Most of them serve award-winning meals and their dishes are reasonably priced. You don’t have to crave for BBQ anymore while in Atlanta!