Where to Eat Crawfish in Beaumont
Heads or Tails? Follow the Crawfish Trail
In Southeast Texas, the start of Spring means one thing: crawfish season. From the border to the bayou, crawfish are a coveted treat in the South from January to July. Said to taste like bite-sized lobsters, there are various techniques and seasonings to preparing crawfish. Southerners love their shellfish and there is truly no other seafood staple that socially brings our friends and neighbors together quite like crawfish. While the Northern states brag about seaside clam bakes, we pride ourselves on finding the best bayou-side boils.
After burying deep in the mud during the cold winter months, crawfish peak in spring and slowly emerge from hibernation, revealing a much plumper figure. But crawfish are much easier to eat than they are to grow. Local crawfish farmers have to dedicate a lot of time and effort into harvesting large, flavorful mudbugs. Anyone who understands crawfish knows the subtle nuances that depend on what they are fed and if they’ve been purged.
Whether you get them from the grocery store, the local seafood shack, or a traditional sit-down restaurant, each venue puts their own take on the seafood delicacy. But with everyone’s claiming their crawfish is the best, you’ll just have to try them all to find your favorite. And with more than 15 places to grub on mudbugs in the Beaumont area when the season rolls around, the only challenge will be deciding where to go first.
What started as a food truck is now a full-service restaurant in Lumberton. Specializing in crawfish, boiled shrimp, and snow crab, Crawfishin’ is nothing fancy (basically a converted carport with community-style picnic table seating), but what they lack in ambiance they make up for in flavor, a testament to their perfect five-star reviews on Yelp. Located off the highway, this oversized metal shed with cafeteria-style tables are available for dine-in or take out. During the season, you’ll find these mild crawfish at places like MacKenzie’s Pub on Tuesday, Bar Local on Wednesday, Sawdust Saloon on Thursday, and Beaux Jangles on Friday.
Authentic Cajun straight from the Bayou, Crazy Cajun began in Pineville, Louisiana before expanding to Beaumont, Texas. They serve crawfish a variety of ways from boils to bait buckets, etouffee, and even have crawfish mac and cheese, which is always a crowd-pleaser. They boast a great outdoor seating area with live music, heaters and patio games, and be sure to snap a photo by the mosaic mural courtesy of the local artist, Ines Alvidres.
Despite having three locations in Southeast Texas, Floyd’s is rooted in the Louisiana tradition. The décor, ambiance, cuisine, and attitude are influenced by the Gulf Coast, which means the fried tails, po’boys, boils, and crawfish bisque, will all leave you roux-ing and awing.
One of the most unique crawfish eating experiences in Beaumont is at none other than Gator Country. Their crawfish nights are held on weekends and offer the opportunity to explore the animal rescue park for free if you're dining under the Texas sun. Grab your favorite BYO drink and listen to the live music to a backdrop of gators and other creatures.
With locations in Vidor and Beaumont, Jingo has quickly risen in the ranks of fan-favorite fast casual seafood. Their crawfish platters are flavorful, well seasoned and available by the pound for drive-through or dine-in.
If you didn’t know what you were looking for, you’d likely drive right by Juju’s. An authentic crawfish shack in a broken-down building with a hand-painted sign, Juju’s is the very definition of a hidden gem. Open only from January to June; people travel from far and wide (and often multiple hours) to try their tasty mudbugs through word of mouth. As a testament to their success, they’ve doubled their business every year since 2003, but being BYO doesn’t hurt either. Located near FM 365, Juju’s is a simple red building where customers don’t even bother asking for a menu -- you just know what you're ordering. Many customers also bring a cooler of beverages and takeout bags because the crawfish is THAT good.
A no-frills strip mall venue, K-Asian is one of those “don’t judge a book by its cover” kind of establishments. Their crawfish are spicy, seasoned to perfection, and sold by the pound. Besides large and affordable mudbugs, they also offer chicken, shrimp, oyster, and catfish platters.
With both fried and grilled seafood, Krazy Kajun is a fast-casual establishment next to H-E-B that has crawfish boils, tails, and fish combos to order. Their style is best described as “Casian,” Cajun-Asian with sauces like ginger and teriyaki for dipping. Besides seasonal crawfish with all the fixings, this place is known for the amazing salt and pepper seasoning they use on everything from frog legs to chicken wings.
A family-owned and operated crawfish farm in Fannett, Red Tailz is the very definition of hook-to-plate. The crawfish comes from their very own ponds, so it doesn’t get much fresher than that. Especially kid and pet-friendly, there’s a playground for the little ones and plenty of room for your four-legged friends to run around. If you’d prefer to host your own crawfish boil, they also cater parties, and offer both cooked and live crawfish.
One of Beaumont’s rowdiest bars, Madison’s is the place to get your boiled crawfish with a beer back. There’s often live entertainment to jam out to inside or on their large patio. The menu is largely comprised of American favorites (think: burgers and tacos), but they do have sharable seafood platters seasonally that are arguably some of the best in town.
McFarland's Cafe’ de Cajun
A neighborhood haunt in Vidor, McFarland's Cajun stop is a great spot for surf and turf with boiled seafood favorites like crawfish, shrimp and snow crab. You can also bring your own ice chest and load up by the pound to bring home.
Newly reopened after a three-year remodel, Pine Tree Lodge has one of the best patios in Beaumont overlooking Taylor's Bayou. You can enjoy seasonal crawfish to live country music and watch the gators swim by.
Cold beers, a friendly atmosphere, and the wind in your hair, Red’s is a covered patio bar that features seasonal seafood boils. They’re known for their all-you-can-eat crawfish on Tuesday nights and celebrate because it’s always patio season in Southeast Texas.
Red Tailz Crawfish offers a rare BYOB crawfish experience to dine on an actual crawfish farm surrounding Taylor Bayou on Highway 124. Each platter is full of made-to-order, seasoned to perfection and garnished with potatoes, corn, a cup of Red Tailz signature seasoning, and a complimentary pink sauce. Open weekends throughout the season, they have a playground for kids and supply live crawfish to several bars in Houston, such as Lil Woodrow’s. Catering is also available.
Elevated Cajun cuisine, Reel Cajun is the go-to spot for your seafood fix. One of the nicest restaurants in town that still encourages you to “come as you are,” they are the three-time Reader’s Choice champs for best crawfish. All the food is locally sourced so you can feel good about supporting the neighborhood.
Rodair Bar & Grill
A casual dine-in Cajun-Creole joint and live music venue, Rodair is one of Port Arthur’s most beloved restaurants. They have crawfish boils a few nights a week along with crawfish pasta, po’boys, etouffee, and fried tails available year-round. You’ll also want to save room for their fried green tomatoes, hush puppies, and boudin balls.
Known for their super flavorful seafood boils in a variety of spices and sauces, Rock'n Crab has both fresh and frozen crawfish platters in a variety of market price boils. Get a group together and share the massive "catch" or "perfect boil" which take up the whole table!
Spanky's Bar & Grill
Homegrown in Orange, Spanky's has been around since the late 80s although it's taken on many lives and looks. Now a mainstay for cold beers and seafood platters, you can find well-seasoned crawfish when in season.
Viet-Cajun fusion, Sweet Basil has nightly crawfish boils until they run out prepared in a unique garlic butter spice glaze. Their menu is mostly comprised of Vietnamese rice plates and noodle bowls, and if you’ve never tried pairing crawfish with banh mis or pho before, you don’t know what you’re missing. Their hot mess fries are also the talk of the town.
Beyond frozen drinks as big as your head, Tia Juanita’s is the go-to for Mexi-Cajun cuisine for live music and a distinct New Orleans vibe. With a few outposts around the region, they are always rockin’ and always busy. With a motto of “you hook ‘em, we cook ‘em,” they offer a variety of Southern seafood dishes from blackened Pontchartrain to shrimp and grits and of course, crawfish. Enjoy them on the covered patio, which often has live music.
Nederland's beloved Cajun Cafe, this Boston Avenue staple has all the favorites from BBQ crab to po'boys. Their boil plates are some of the best in the area and they also have a retail store that sells live seafood by the bag including crawfish, shrimp, and crab to throw your own backyard boil.
After shuttering for more than two years due to tropical storm damage, local favorite Vautrot’s is back and better than ever. The third-generation family business is happy to be offering its beloved gumbo and crawfish etouffee in a new larger building at the same location and is excited to welcome new customers into the fold.
A Mexican joint in Port Arthur, The King, offers boiled crawfish in portions of 2-100 lbs. so bring the whole crew and come hungry. Seafood dishes are specialties, but they also offer ethnic favorites like volcano nachos and churros and are known to have one of the best Micheladas in town if you need to wash down the heat.