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Where to Get BBQ Food in Boston

Indulge in pulled pork, mac and cheese, and more at these places in Boston.

As one of the most visited cities on the East coast of the United States, Boston is rich in history, fun things to do, and delicious places to eat.

grilled barbeque at boston bbq restaurants

While it’s no secret that Boston is known for their excellent seafood, specifically lobster rolls, there’s more to the city’s food scene.

Boston is filled with restaurants boasting all sorts of cuisine. So if you find yourself wandering through the beautiful city craving barbeque, you’re in luck.

Even though it’s a northern city, there’s terrific barbeque food to try in Boston. These are the best BBQ restaurants in Boston.


The Smoke Shop BBQ

Multiple locations
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I knew I had to try The Smoke Shop BBQ in Boston because there are several locations throughout the city, so it must be good.

The location on Congress Street is near downtown, making it perfect for lunch when you’re out exploring the city.

The restaurant is a modern barbeque joint with wooden fixtures and a laid-back atmosphere. The Smoke Shop’s menu is filled with everything you could want from a barbeque restaurant.

They have meats, side dishes, great cocktails, and a separate whiskey menu. I had to try their famous hot wings to start, and you can’t go wrong with their brisket plate and a side of pimento mac and cheese, either.


The Don’s BBQ

93 School St, Watertown, MA 02472
Phone: 617-744-0224
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The Don’s BBQ is east of Harvard in the more quiet suburb, East Watertown. You’ll know you’ve arrived when you see a brick building with prominent black doors and red accents.

The restaurant is modern but sticks to a traditional barbecue joint by serving everything on paper plates or metal trays.

Known as the godfather of brisket, most people will tell you that you have to try it when you’re here. It’s delicious, but the smoked catfish is to die for if you’re not a brisket person.

The black bean and corn salad is impressive for side dishes, as is their fresh cornbread.


Blackstrap BBQ

47 Woodside Ave, Winthrop, MA 02152
Phone: 617-207-1783
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To the east of Boston’s main airport is Blackstrap BBQ. This small restaurant specializes in smoking meats, and they take a lot of pride in this.

It has your classic barbecue restaurant vibe with wood floors, walls, and tables but traditional Boston flare with red, white, and blue chairs.

It’s a relaxed place where you can sit back and enjoy a meal and cold beer.  Blackstrap BBQ has plenty of smoked meats and less traditional barbecue items.

You can get barbecue tacos, corn dogs, and other similar items. I loved the house-smoked sausage with a cup of chili and bacon salad.


Blue Ribbon BBQ

342 Washington St, Dedham, MA 02026
Phone: 781-312-2583
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Blue Ribbon BBQ is a little off the beaten path on Washington Street, but it’s worth making the trek to try this excellent barbeque joint.

Since 1995, the restaurant has been a place for gathering with friends and enjoying fantastic food. I loved how casual this counter-service restaurant was.

You can order and then take a seat in their spacious dining area.  It was hard to choose what to order because everything looked tasty.

They have everything from sandwiches to barbeque plates, side dishes, and more. I went with their burnt ends BBQ burrito and a side of dirty rice since it’s a specialty item by them, and it didn’t disappoint.


Pit Stop Barbecue

888 Morton St A, Mattapan, MA 02126
Phone: 617-436-0485
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If you’re a fan of hole-in-the-wall restaurants, then Pit Stop Barbecue is where you need to try. This tiny restaurant is cozy and a local staple in the Boston area.

You can tell the staff is passionate about their cuisine, and if you don’t know what to order at the counter, they’ll make great recommendations.

Pit Stop Barbecue’s menu looked like many other barbecue joints with several meat options, plates, and classic sides.

I went with their dinner option, which lets you choose your meat and then two sides. It also comes with some of the best cornbread I’ve ever had. I loved the pork ribs with potato salad and coleslaw.


Sweet Cheeks Q

1381 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02215
Phone: 617-266-1300
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Sweet Cheeks Q is the best barbecue spot to try before or after catching a game at Fenway Park since it’s only a six-minute walk away.

The restaurant features rustic decor and a beautiful outdoor patio with string lights. I recommend grabbing a spot outside or at the outdoor bar.

You’ll find salads, barbecue meats, sandwiches, and plenty of shareable dishes on their menu. Their buttermilk fried chicken came highly recommended, so I had to try it.

But their dry-rubbed ribs were also to die for. But, the star of the show for me was the broccoli and cheese casserole.


M&M BBQ

1250 Massachusetts Ave, Dorchester, MA 02125
Phone: 617-307-7674
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You’ll find M&M BBQ in south Boston, near Carson Beach, inside the Dorchester Brewing Company. You don’t have to have drinks at the brewery to order their food.

But it is the best dining option to enjoy while relaxing in the brewery. You’ll order at their counter, and everything is served in a to-go container.

M&M BBQ has a lot of French fry options, barbecue sandwiches, and chicken wings. I noticed many people eating their dumpster fries, and although the name is off-putting.

It was the best thing I’d eaten all day. It’s a pile of fries with your choice of pulled pork, pulled chicken, or brisket, then topped with cheese sauce, coleslaw, and barbecue sauce.


Redbones Barbecue

55 Chester St, Somerville, MA 02144
Phone: 617-628-2200
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Just north of Harvard is Redbone’s Barbecue. This quaint restaurant on Chester Street is casual with checkered tablecloths and vibrant colors and decorations.

It’s a must-try when you’re in Boston and a great spot to stop when walking around Harvard or touring a museum in the area.

Some of the menu items you’ll find here are hot wings, buffalo shrimp, hush puppies, pulled pork plates and sandwiches, and other classic barbecue items.

One of their popular choices is the pit grilled Angus cheeseburger. The tangy barbecue sauce makes this burger extra delicious.

Their combos with side dishes are great if you struggle to choose what to order.


Larry J’s BBQ Cafe

600 D St, Boston, MA 02210
Phone: 617-348-9800
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Near the Boston fishing piers is Larry J’s BBQ Cafe. This southern barbecue restaurant is a small counter-service cafe with a few tables scattered nearby for you to sit and enjoy your meal.

While they have a small sign out front, it’s easy to miss this joint if you’re not looking for it. They have an extensive menu to look through for such a small restaurant.

Some of their best dishes are the southern fried catfish, smoked pork loin, and classic hot dogs. Whatever you order here, you can’t forget to try their pasta salad and baked beans.

They’re some of the best you can get outside the southern United States.


The Porch Southern Fare & Juke Joint

175 Rivers Edge Dr, Medford, MA 02155
Phone: 781-874-9357
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The Porch Southern Fare and Juke Joint is the best if you’re looking for a slightly more upscale barbecue joint.

It’s near the Malden River north of the city center. This lively restaurant features excellent music and great company and is beautifully decorated.

While people come for the atmosphere, they stay for the food. You have to start your meal with their deviled eggs or buttermilk biscuits and honey.

Their menu features shrimp and grits, barbecue pork, and other southern dishes. I loved the barbecue chicken and pimento cheese sandwich.


Formaggio Kitchen – South End

268 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118
Phone: 617-350-6996
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Next to Peter’s Park is Formaggio Kitchen. This isn’t your typical barbecue spot because it’s an artisanal cheese and food shop.

But they have plenty of barbecue items worth checking out while in Boston. You’ll be surrounded by bottles of wine, cheese, and other things you can purchase and take home with you when you walk in.

As you browse the shelves, you’ll find a specific section for “barbecue season.” They have a variety of sauces and seasonings to elevate your next summer barbecue.

My two favorites are their classic Japanese barbecue sauce and hot bourbon sauce.


Oliveira’s Steak House

Multiple locations
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Boston doesn’t just have classic American barbecue restaurants. They have a fantastic Brazilian barbecue restaurant, Oliveira’s Steak House.

This beautiful brick restaurant is the perfect combination of sophisticated and casual. The menu at Oliveira’s offers classic Brazilian meats, all-you-can-eat meats, and a buffet option if you’re interested in trying a bit of everything.

I recommend going with their all-you-can-eat meat option so you can sample their barbecue meats like file a milanesa and bife a cavalo.


Tennessee’s BBQ

Multiple locations
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There are several locations of this delicious barbecue joint. Tennessee’s BBQ is an old-school barbecue restaurant that provides fast service with food that tastes anything but like the chef’s made it quickly.

The restaurants have checkered floors, neon lights, and great staff who make you feel welcomed. Tennessee’s BBQ’s menu features very classic barbecue dishes.

There are several smoked types of meat, combo platters, and all the side dishes you could ever want. I chose to try their Caribbean chicken with collard greens and baked mac and cheese.

Don’t forget to end your meal with a slide of homemade pecan pie.


Final Thoughts

Although it’s not a city famous for barbeque food, you shouldn’t write off getting barbeque food while in the city.

Whether you want a pulled pork sandwich or brisket or are more interested in the mouth-watering side dishes that come with barbeque food, these are the best BBQ restaurants in Boston that are sure to satisfy you. If you’re craving ramen instead, then you may want to head to these places!

Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment, and we’ll check it out!


Best BBQ Spots in Boston

  1. The Smoke Shop BBQ
  2. The Don’s BBQ
  3. Blackstrap BBQ
  4. Blue Ribbon BBQ
  5. Pit Stop Barbecue
  6. Sweet Cheeks Q
  7. M&M BBQ
  8. Redbones Barbecue
  9. Larry J’s BBQ Cafe
  10. The Porch Southern Fare & Juke Joint
  11. Formaggio Kitchen – South End
  12. Oliveira’s Steak House
  13. Tennessee’s BBQ

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Written by Brian N

Brian has been an influencer in the food and beverage industry for over 20 years. He not only loves to eat and drink at restaurants on a regular basis, he also knows the business inside and out.