There are so many incredible places to eat in Tupelo, Mississippi, and it can be daunting to select the best of the best. Tripadvisor mentions over 170 to choose from that run the gamut from Mexican to Southern-inspired, farm-to-table to gourmet pizza. Here is a look at our favorites and what is really good at that particular restaurant. Be assured that your taste buds will be pleased as punch from this yummy post.!
Known as Tupelo’s home for live music, to me, Blue Canoe is a restaurant I had been wishing to visit since reading about it in a Southern cooking magazine years ago. Blue Canoe is a fun and funky restaurant with a most interesting menu. Their selection of craft beer is extensive and the food, creative and absolutely delicious!
For starters, go with the Caribbean Edamame with jerk seasoning or the Crack Dip Fries, utterly life-changing, with a spicy sausage cheese dip over hand-cut potatoes.
Blake and I started our meal with some of the Blue Canoe’s famous Crack Dip Fries (large side of fries covered with spicy sausage cheese dip). Oh my gosh! After one bite, I understood why they are “crack” dip fries; they are highly addicting. -Taylor Hardy
I had the Avocado Wedges (with crawfish!) instead of a traditional entree, but the Pork & Greens is one of the most popular, with pulled pork, cheese grits, greens, and cornbread. Another hot commodity are the Chicken and Waffle (bourbon maple syrup). Be sure to save room for Connie’s Blueberry Doughnut Bread Pudding, an award-winning dish that is out of this world. This is the kinda place you get a little South in your mouth!
Pizza Vs Tacos
Hands down, Pizza Vs. Tacos is my favorite place to eat in Tupelo. Not usually a pizza fan, so I am still amazed that I loved it so much. Perhaps it was the vibrant atmosphere, great service, garlic breakfast sticks with sweet marinara sauce, or the 80s music playing. But probably not. It was the sheer genius Detroit-style pizza creations that come about here.
I honestly studied the menu at home for days before going to the restaurant, and the out-of-the-blue specials they post on Facebook kept giving me more things I wanted to try. When I got there, I settled on The Mean Green, a pie with Italian sausage, red pepper flakes, broccoli florets, hot local honey, and ricotta cream sauce. The broccoli and hot honey were my draws to this pizza, and it certainly delivered.
If you’ve never had Detroit-style pizza (apparently I had not), the crust is thick but airy and fluffy but crispy and chewy. For someone who usually cuts the crust off my pizza at age 51, enjoying the pizza crust as much as the pizza itself was a novelty for me. My daughter, Taylor, had the 4-Cheese, which was equally as good.
Pizza Vs. Tacos has gourmet margaritas and sangria, plus kids-eat-free on Tuesdays and Thursdays, hip-hip-hooray.
Butterbean Biscuits and Coffee
A little off the beaten path, this eye-catching restaurant is a place I wanted to hang out for hours. Colorful murals on the wall added to the already welcoming vibe. The lavender cold brew was exceptional, as was my biscuit with sausage and two choices of gravy.
The concept at Butterbean is that you design the breakfast you want, with each item priced a la carte. Mine ended up being a $6 breakfast ($1 each for the 4 oz gravy portions), which I thought was really reasonable. I’m typically a sausage gravy eater, but also wanted to try the tomato gravy, which was 10/10 yummy. I can see why it is on so many Mississippi menus. Butterbean is open daily until 2 PM.
Sweet Tea & Biscuits Cafe
The Sweet Tea & Biscuits Cafe is a family operated business serving homemade Southern favorites Tuesday through Saturday (11 AM to 2 PM). It is the epitome of Southern Hospitality. The recipes (soups, sandwiches, snacks, and desserts) have been passed down from the owners’ (Joan and Beverly) mother. Although the restaurant is popular with Tupelo locals, it has also been featured in Paula Deen’s Magazine. If you don’t have time to stop in and eat lunch, pick up a casserole or dessert from the Take Home Freezer.
My daughter, Taylor, and her husband Blake, visited Sweet Tea & Biscuits Cafe during lunch. Taylor had the Homemade Pimento and Cheese Sandwich (with tomato and spring greens) while Blake ordered Momma’s Famous Chicken Salad Sandwich. Not just any chicken salad, but a hearty salad of mixed spring greens, tomatoes, toasted almonds, and juicy sliced red grapes. They claimed the sandwiches were great! Both kids came with one of the restaurant’s yummy homemade biscuits.
They finished their lunch by sharing a slice of Strawberry Cake, but swear the best part of their meal was the Southern Sweet Tea.
Romie’s Grocery has a super fun atmosphere, indoor and outdoor dining, and a killer menu. One of Romie’s best offerings is the traditional meat + 3 meal deal, with a choice of entree, three sides, and a piece of cornbread or dinner roll. Romie’s meal + 3 is $8, a total steal! Meat choices change daily but might feature fried or grilled chicken tenders, salmon patties, or fried chicken. Side dishes range from fried green tomatoes and fruit to purple hull peas, mashed potatoes & gravy, and deviled eggs. I had the deviled eggs (2 pieces) and they were Southern perfection.
If the plate lunch isn’t your kind of meal, Romie’s also has salads, sandwiches, pizza, nachos, and chips & Rotel for lunch. All those items, plus pasta, catfish, and steaks are on the dinner menu.
I ate the chicken & stuffing (it’s a Mississippi thing!), deviled eggs, and green beans. It was a good choice, but I seriously could have eaten ten servings of those green beans. Wow! I had the cornbread, but it was more like a hoecake to me. Though I wanted to try the Romie’s Banana pudding, I was too full. Other desserts include bread pudding, chocolate delight, and a lemon crunch.
The Fairpark Grill is in the heart of Downtown Tupelo with a fabulous view of the park. “A sophisticated atmosphere with a laid-back twist, The Grill is a place that is comfortable and welcoming like a local sports bar but provides an upscale dining experience.” Simply put, the Fairpark Grill makes patrons happy. Visit the Fairpark Grill for lunch, dinner, and brunch on the weekends.
Start your dinner with Fairpark Grill’s Spring Rolls (cabbage, carrots, onions, celery & Asian pork with slaw) and Panko-Crusted Fried Cheese. Although the Spring Rolls are really good, I liked the ooey-gooey Mozzarella and Pepper Jack Fried Cheese most. I had never had Pepper Jack in fried cheese before but thoroughly enjoyed them.
For dinner, the Sriracha Chicken Sandwich (fried chicken, jack cheese, lettuce, applewood-smoked bacon, Sriracha aioli, and tomato on brioche) is a great pick. The fried chicken is not at all greasy, and the Sriracha aioli was excellent and not too spicy. My favorite is the Chicken Picatta, a pan-fried chicken breast with a light caper-lemon butter sauce, served with mashed potatoes & grilled asparagus. This meal rates a 10/10 score.
Nestled in a strip mall setting, Neon Pig is noticeable from its cute Purple neon pig sign above the door. Inside is a spacious dining area, cooler full of a variety of craft beers, a small market with fresh produce and an old-school butcher shop, plus grab and go items. We came for lunch, so we opted to sit inside. Neon Pig is a full-service restaurant, but you serve yourself fountain sodas and tea.
The Smashburger, voted Best Burger in America by Thrillist, was my order, while I was tempted to have the Gulf Shrimp Dinner (fresh seafood always at Neon Pig) or Chicken Bun (with chow chow and curry slaw). The Smashburger is a house-grind patty made from Benton’s bacon, four steak cuts, and then it is topped with pickled onions, pickles, cheddar cheese, hoisin, and comeback sauce.
All of this yumminess sits on a ciabatta roll. The flavor is really good, and I especially liked the pickled onions. A fun fact about Neon Pig is that they break down whole animals in-house and the produce is locally sourced. Make sure to have a butcher board, which are Instagram perfection
Okay, so Crave is not only an adorable coffee shop but also has pastries and breakfast items, too. Then (it gets better), they are known around the state of Mississippi for their award-winning Skillet Cookie, named “
Best Dessert in Mississippi” by Mississippi Magazine. That and the other desserts on the menu give them the bragging rights of being “Tupelo’s Dessert Cafe”. If that isn’t a recipe for success, I don’t know what is.
The coffee drinks are good, and the savory scone was a nice option rather than just sweet pastries. I do wish CRAVE had a better way of displaying the desserts they offer, or a menu with pictures of each, but for my visit, the Skillet Cookie worked was perfect because we went just for that.
Please place your cast-iron skillet cookie order when you arrive because it does take about 25-30 minutes to bake. Then they doctor it all up with vanilla ice cream and drizzles of caramel and chocolate. The skillet arrives at your table very warm, so you can imagine how yummy it is with the melty chocolate chips and ice cream combination. Delicious!
Mugshots Grill & Bar
Two college friends dreamt of creating a place where customers and employees would always be “havin’ a good time” and making life grand for the community by giving back. Well, those friends have made their dream a reality with Mugshots Grill & Bar. The restaurant serves the Sweetest Buns in the South and was voted as having the Best Burger in the state by Mississippi Magazine for 11 years in a row. Tupelo’s Mugshots has nearly 20 burger creations on the menu and a noteworthy daily happy hour with drink, appetizer, and wing specials.
When Taylor and Blake went, she tried the Parmesan Chicken Marinara Plate. Mugshots’ chicken Parmesan features a hand-battered, lightly-fried boneless chicken breast over penne pasta. It is drenched with creamy Alfredo sauce and marinara (on the side for her!) and comes with a side of Texas toast. She was a big fan. Blake had one of his favorites, a buttery Patty Melt. Traditional burgers at Mugshots are served on their signature toasted sourdough bun, which sends them really over the top in palate-pleasing.
Clays House of Pig
If you want to know where to eat in Tupelo and where you can also get to-go food in one fail swoop, I recommend Clay’s House of Pig (C.H.O.P.). Clay’s is inside a bait and tackle shop but offers seating and counter service options. I preferred to order from the outside window, along with another dozen or so other patrons.
I hadn’t eaten a fried bologna sandwich in years, and since Clay’s smokes their meats in-house, I thought I would give it a try. Also ordered was chicken nuggets for my granddaughter and the raved about BBQ Pork Tater. It took a bit of time for our food to be prepared but was definitely worth the wait.
The bologna sandwich was spot on, served with a flavorful side of coleslaw. I don’t know how to describe the tater, which appeared to be swimming in sauce, and I couldn’t make out part of the ingredients since it was layered and in a take-away container. But one bite, and I was in love. Coleslaw, sour cream, crunchy bacon pieces, chives, queso, pulled pork, jalapenos, and who knows what else, cover the half potato (comes in regular, jumbo, or half sizes), but it is over-the-top insanely delicious. I want to try more of this Tupelo restaurant in my future travels.
Kermits Soul Kitchen
Kermit’s Soul Kitchen (a sister restaurant to Neon Pig), a colorful exposed brick eatery, is in a 140-year-old building in Downtown Tupelo. Kermit’s offers two floors of dining space indoors and cute outdoor patios. The menu is eclectic with various menu items, but the emphasis is local and keeping business close to home.
I had the 6 oz portion of pulled chicken for lunch at Kermit’s, which was plenty, and made it a plate for $4.50, which includes two sides and a choice of cornbread or cauliflower breadsticks. I picked the healthy marinated broccoli, farro, and raisins as one choice, and the not so healthy Benton’s Bacon Mac & Cheese as the other. I also picked the incredibly delicious breadsticks.
My meal looked so pretty on the plate, and my food tasted really good. My server brought me three different sauces to try, all flavorful and tasty. King sauce was my top pick, a mustard bbq variety. Though I didn’t try them, Kermit’s drink menu was fantastic, with a great selection of skinny and specialty margaritas and frosés. You can also get family meals here.
Please note: The Main Street Downtown Dollars are not accepted here though the restaurant is listed on participating sponsors’ roster.
Discover How Tasty Tupelo Is
Tupelo is growing in popularity and the food scene is a big reason why. I cannot wait to visit again and eat my way through more of Tupelo’s restaurants.
Do you have any suggestions?
Many of our meals were complimentary during our Tupelo visit. As always, opinions and reviews are completely mine and unbiased.
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