It’s not a real New Orleans experience until you’ve discovered the food. Best known for the local seafood and creole flavors, classic New Orleans dishes are the perfect mix of local resources and traditional southern soul. French influences and NOLA passion are present in every dish. Headed there soon? Here are the classics you need to try.
And for the record, if you’re in New Orleans with a shellfish allergy, you have my deepest sympathy.
Red Beans & Rice
A pretty straight forward dish and my personal favorite—it’s rice, beans and sausage with creole flavors. And apparently, a Monday tradition in New Orleans!
Lots of seafood. Lots of veggies. Hot sauce, creole seasonings, and sausage. Hearty & delicious! Here’s a great recipe that delves deep into each step of the process.
Pronounced ey-too-fey, it’s one of the simplest dishes in it’s design. Flavorful and hearty, it includes vegetables, butter or roux, and either shrimp or crawfish. And just like the previous two dishes, it comes serviced with rice. You won’t find this dish anywhere else!
One of the perks of New Orleans being right on the coast is its great access to fresh seafood, including oysters. Whether you’re enjoying them raw or chargrilled, you should start every meal with this local favorite. Looking for the perfect spot to grab some? In addition to the places I checked out, this list is pretty solid!
The best part of year-round warm weather is getting to attend a classic, southern crawfish boil. Sure, it’s a lot of work and you can get crawfish in a number of other dishes, but it’s not about the food so much as the experience. Throwing a big bucket of bright red crawfish across the table, corn on the cob and potatoes mixed in…there’s nothing like getting elbow-deep in the mix. Definitely worth asking around for a local crawfish boil while you’re in town.
Bonus: Pecan Pie!
If nothing really strikes your fancy on this list, you at least have to try a slice of Pecan Pie. A delicious local classic, it’s the perfect end to any (and every) meal.