I was born and raised in Nashville, and living there for almost 2 decades, I wanted to give you a local’s perspective of where to eat! Nashville Natives are a rare breed these days, I hope these recommendations are helpful!
I wanted to make a quick note about a couple places that I’m sure you’ll find on other lists of food to eat in Nashville. Biscuit Love (breakfast/brunch/lunch with locations in The Gulch, Hillsboro Village, and Franklin), and Pancake Pantry (breakfast in Hillsboro Village) are very popular and have very long lines!! I think there are other places with shorter lines and/or better food- see my breakfast section for more details!!
BBQ: Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint
Martin’s is a local bbq chain that has several locations around Nashville. (There are also locations in Louisville, Birmingham, and Charleston). It is my absolute favorite place for bbq and usually one of the first restaurants I go to when I am home. It is SO good !
I have never had anything that I didn’t like from Martin’s, but my favorites are:
- Chicken wings tossed in their Alabama white sauce
- Pulled pork sandwich with sweet dixie sauce
- Broccoli salad
- Fudge pie
Las Palmas is a local Mexican chain that has several locations around Nashville. It is my family’s go-to and always one of the first stops when I get back in town. I have never had anything there that I didn’t love!
- Cheese dip!
- Chicken soft tacos
- Chicken taco salad
- Chicken enchiladas
- LP Special with chicken
- Nachos Palmas
El Palenque has similar food to Las Palmas, but only has one location and is located in Green Hills. One thing that El Palenque has that Las Palmas doesn’t is avocado enchiladas. They also have really good chicken soup!
San Antonio Taco Company (SATCo)
SATCo is tex-mex at its finest and it’s located near Vanderbilt. The food is cheap and delicious!
This restaurant is not unique to Nashville, but I love it so I’m putting it on the list. It’s located in the trendy area of 12south!
- Baja fish tacos
- Fresh pineapple with lime
Burger Up has two locations in Nashville, but the only one I’ve been to is the one in in 12south. I really like their salmon burger because its very light! They have good fries too!
They have multiple locations around town. I like their triple dip appetizer and cheeseburgers!
TBH I haven’t been to The Pharmacy in a while but I know a lot of people that rave about it!
Not at all Nashville exclusive, but it’s so good I have to include it. My go-to is gooey butter cake!! There are multiple locations around town (12South, Hillsboro Village, East Nashville)
The best popsicles EVER! I love the fruit ones so much but all of them are good! Located in 12South!
The cutest coffee shop/restaurant in Hillsboro Village! They have ALL DAY BREAKFAST and it’s so yummy! HUGE fan of the Steak Scramble & Chai Latte but everything I’ve had is good! They also have lunch 🙂
A classic Nashville spot- when you enter, there are a bunch of country music stars and celebrities who have signed their picture covering the walls! Be prepared to wait but its worth it for their iconic biscuits!!
This restaurant is located on the ground floor of the Omni Hotel downtown! Their breakfast buffet is so delicious and I love the decor there!