Although Nebraska BBQ isn’t nearly as famous as, say, Kansas City or East Texas, we’re a state of meat eaters. We know how to serve up some mean barbecue, whether you like it naked or drowning in a multi-layered gourmet sauce. Next time you’re in the mood for some barbecue, check out one of these must-try Nebraska BBQ joints. (Listed in alphabetical order.)
1. Babe's Hometown BBQ, Plattsmouth
This highly-recommended restaurant serves their meat "naked," letting you choose from 10 different sauces to dress up your meal.
2. Boyd & Charlie's BBQ, Elkhorn
Located just outside of Omaha, this joint serves up some of the best beef brisket around.
3. Cassidy's Backroad BBQ & Grill, Burwell
Formerly the Country Neighbor, Cassidy's was recently voted "Best of the Best" in the BBQ and catering categories by Custer County Chief readers.
4. Doc & Eddie's BBQ, Omaha
The ribs are a favorite here, but the corn fritters get just as much love. The friendly service helps make the experience here even better.
5. EJ's BBQ & Takeout, Chadron
This Chadron staple has crazy good barbecue, and visitors rave about the incredible coleslaw and delicious butterscotch pudding.
6. Hartland Bar-B-Que, Omaha
With four sauces to choose from, delectable ribs, and cornbread that melts in your mouth, Hartland is an Omaha favorite.
7. Hickory Road BBQ, Auburn and Lincoln
This very highly rated BBQ place in Auburn draws crowds from the local area as well as surrounding towns. It boasts ribs that rival even those at the big-name KC joints.
8. Huey's Smokehouse BBQ, Fremont
Serving up award winning barbecue in two locations, Huey's has some of the most amazing brisket and ribs you'll find in the state.
9. Jim's Rib Haven, Omaha
Don't let the exterior fool you - this nondescript little building in North Omaha serves up some of the most mouth-watering BBQ in the city.
10. Ladybug BBQ, Nebraska City
It would be pretty easy to pass right by Ladybug BBQ in its renovated Dairy Queen building, but stop in for a while and you'll be rewarded with some of the juiciest, smokiest, most mouth-watering barbecue in the area.
11. Lippy's BBQ, Malcolm
Cooked slowly every day on a wood-fired barbecue, the meat here is always fresh, succulent, and naked - with no sauce.
12. Luke & Jake's Bar-B-Q, Kearney
This place is popular with the college crowd, but don't let that stop you from trying the pulled pork and brisket. Or get a little adventurous with a giant loaded baked potato on Tater Tuesdays.
13. Main Street BBQ & Grill, Blair
Main Street serves up unforgettable ribs and a pulled pork sandwich so good that you'll be looking forward to the next one before you even finish the first.
14. Parker's Smokehouse, Ashland, Lincoln, and Omaha
With locations in Auburn, Lincoln, and Nebraska City, you have plenty of chances to enjoy Parker's Smokehouse's tasty meats and friendly servers.
15. Phat Jack's BBQ, Lincoln
Phat Jack's claim to fame may be their burnt ends, which come with rave reviews from just about everyone who tries them. This place took home the 2012 Grand Champion title from the Honkey Tonk BBQ Contest.
16. Po' Boy's Barbecue, Gretna
The smoker is always going at Po' Boy's, and the meat does not disappoint. It's fresh and tender, and they also sell smoked ribs in bulk if you're looking for the perfect meal for your next get-together.
17. Poppi's BBQ, Lincoln
Besides being locally famous for their oh-so-tender meats, Poppi's also does something a bit out of the ordinary for a BBQ joint: they offer healthy choices for the healthier eaters in your group.
18. Rock-Jan's Pit BBQ, Crawford
The wood-smoked meats at Rock-Jan's are so much more amazing than you might assume from your first glance of this tiny ex-Dairy Sweet building.
19. Skeeter Barnes BBQ, Kearney and Columbus
Operating a location in Kearney and another in Columbus, Skeeter Barnes' dry-rubbed BBQ is an absolute must-try. Dig into their "all you care to eat" side dishes as well.
20. Smokin Stan's BBQ & Dee-Lites, Norfolk
Amazing meats and super-friendly service keep loyal customers coming back over and over. The brisket nachos are said to be some of the best around.
21. Southwest Pit BBQ, Lincoln
Diners swear that the ribs and wings here rival those served in the big BBQ capitols of America.
22. Swine Dining, Bellevue
Recently named as the best BBQ place in the state by Thrillist, Swine Dining is in an unassuming little building in Bellevue. The restaurant has plenty of loyal fans who agree that this is the best BBQ in Nebraska.
23. Taste of Texas BBQ, Holdrege and McCook
Taste of Texas was actually born in McCook and now boasts a second location in Holdrege. The tender, smoky meats served at both locations will leave you craving more even after you've stuffed yourself.
24. We'll Smoke U BBQ, Gretna
The locally-famous We'll Smoke U BBQ offers up tasty ribs, melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork, and all of the other delicious selections you'd hope to find - plus quick and friendly service, to boot.
As usual, we’ve left off the big, national chains – everyone knows where to find those. This is by no means a definitive list of all of the BBQ restaurants in the state; there are even more out there, just waiting to tempt your tastebuds. What restaurants would you add to the list?