Here in metro Detroit, pit masters are using their skills to create some of the most delicious BBQ in the country. There’s no need for debate on which style takes the cake because in the motor city, we get to experience the best of all the styles from around the country. From Texas to Carolina styles, rubs to sauces, and ribs to pulled pork, here are the seven best restaurants to get your BBQ fix in metro Detroit:
1. Union Woodshop – Clarkston
If you like variety, Union Woodshop is a one-stop shop for everything delicious about BBQ. They’re smoking nearly every kind of meat out back and pairing it with seven different regional-style sauces. Don’t forget to add one of their incredible sides to make the most heavenly BBQ meal you’ve ever had.
Must try items: Half Chicken, Alabama White Sauce, Sweet Potato Mash, and Union Mac and Cheese
2. Slows – Detroit
A Corktown staple with a line out the door, Slows is one of the most popular BBQ restaurants in Detroit. Boasting a menu of classic and modernized BBQ favorites, as well as an extensive tap beer selection, this is a great go-to before or after a concert or sporting event downtown.
Must try items: The Reason sandwich, Brisket Coney Fries, and The Hot Mess
3. Bad Brad’s BBQ – Clinton Township, New Baltimore, Orion Township, and Shelby Township
With four metro Detroit locations, Bad Brad’s BBQ is making everything they serve from scratch. They offer a great variety of traditional BBQ plates, as well as mouth-watering sandwiches, entrees, and pizzas.
Must try items: BBQ Chowder, Beef Brisket, Pork Sausage, Bad Brad’s Pit Beans, and Potato Salad
4. J Bird Smoked Meats – Keego Harbor
If family-style dining is what you’re looking for, J Bird Smoke Meats has you covered. Nearly everything on their menu is meant to be shared. They smoke all of their meats using pure Michigan apple, cherry, maple, and oak woods and boast five regional sauces with a rotating seasonal sauce, as well.
Must try items: Family Style Dining, Dry Rubbed Ribs, Pulled Pork, and Buttermilk Slaw
5. Lockhart’s BBQ – Royal Oak and Lake Orion
Staking the claim on Detroit Style BBQ, Lockhart’s is taking hints from all of the great BBQ joints from every region of the country. They dry rub their meats, cook them low and slow, and serve them alongside their homemade signature sauces and sides. As a bonus, they’re also open for breakfast.
Must try items: Red Hots Sausage, Beef Brisket, and Deviled Eggs
6. Red Crown – Grosse Pointe
Residing in a former gas and service station, Red Crown is taking local eating to a new level. Menu items are locally sourced from farms and markets in the area even down to using Michigan woods for their smoker. Their generously-sized BBQ menu is complimented by an equally impressive selection of southern comfort cuisine items.
Must try items: Duck Tots, Pork and Grits, House Smoked Meatloaf, Crown Brisket, and Mac and Cheese
7. Woodpile BBQ Shack – Clawson
Using a smoker that runs throughout the night, Woodpile BBQ Shack delivers delicious slow-cooked meats in generous portions. You might want to swing by early because once a menu item is sold out, it’s gone until the next morning. As an added bonus, they’ve partnered with Treat Dreams Microcreamery to create some delicious ice cream pairings for your BBQ feast.
Must try items: Pulled Chicken, St. Louis Spare Ribs, and Pulled Pork Sandwich