Iowa September 10, 2016
This Epic 3-Day Restaurant Road Trip In Iowa Will Satisfy Your Adventurous Stomach
Restaurant road trip? That’s my idea of a dream weekend getaway. And Iowa provides plenty of stellar choices to visit along the way. From classic American fare to amazing burritos to Asian-inspired pizza (yes, you read that right), Iowa has some pretty amazing restaurants. This road trip is for you if you’ve wanted to get out there and sample some of the best food Iowa has to offer. The total trip takes about 10 ½ hours of drive time, so three days is plenty of time to hit all of these spots.
The trip stretches across the state, so you can visit as many or as few places as you have time for. You can find the Google map route here.
Breakfast, Day 1: The Hamburg Inn 2, Iowa City
We begin our trip in Iowa City at the Hamburg Inn for an amazing breakfast. The Hamburg is an Iowa City fixture, and they’ve had plenty of famous patrons, like Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. They serve all the greasy spoon classics, like omelets, hash browns, pancakes and french toast, with delicious additions like blueberries, pecans, chocolate chips and more.
Lunch, Day 1: Canteen Lunch in the Alley, Ottumwa
Next stop is lunch at the classic lunch counter, Canteen Lunch in the Alley. They serve the most incredible loose-meat sandwiches and shakes. Top your sandwich with cheese sauce for even more deliciousness.
Dinner, Day 1: Ladora Bank Bistro, Ladora
Finally, for dinner, the unforgettable Ladora Bank Bistro will blow you away. The restaurant is in a renovated 1920s bank, and it is stunning. Add unique shared plates to that, like Moroccan Lamb Meatballs, Pork Belly Tacos and Sesame Tuna, and your stomach will be happy.
Breakfast, Day 2: The Cafe, Ames
Another day, another tasty breakfast. The Cafe is a favorite breakfast spot in Ames, and it’s not hard to see why. With a huge selection of fresh-made baked goods and delicious breakfast items, like stuffed french toast and shrimp and grits, it’s no surprise that people love this place.
Lunch, Day 2: Fong’s Pizza, Des Moines
Next, an unusual lunch in Des Moines. Fong’s Pizza was previously occupied by a Chinese restaurant, and the owners decided to go with the Asian theme and build an inventive menu full of Asian-inspired items, like Thai Chicken or Teriyaki Beef pizza.
Dinner, Day 2: Chuckwagon Restaurant, Adair
For dinner, have an award-winning burger at the Chuckwagon in Adair. The Chuckwagon was the winner of Iowa’s Best Burger contest for 2016, judged by the Iowa Beef Industry Council and the Iowa Cattlemen's Association. Enough said.
Breakfast, Day 3: Dixie Quicks, Council Bluffs
For your final breakfast of the trip, you’ll pay a visit to the unforgettable Dixie Quicks in Council Bluffs. They offer an unusual blend of Southern cooking with Cajun, Tex-Mex and Southwest flavors. Their cactus scramble is amazing, and their french toast is to die for.
Lunch, Day 3: La Juanita, Storm Lake
For lunch, La Juanita serves some of the best Mexican food you can find in Iowa. The burritos and tacos are amazing, and their homemade hot sauce takes everything to the next level.
Dinner, Day 3: Archie’s Waeside, Le Mars
Last stop on the road trip is for award-winning, mouth-watering steak at this unassuming, family run steakhouse in the small town of Le Mars. Their steaks are dry aged and melt-in-your-mouth delicious, and there’s an inviting atmosphere that will make you feel right at home. This is a fantastic place to end your culinary tour of Iowa.
What do you think of this road trip? Here’s another awesome Iowa road trip you might enjoy. We Dare You To Take This Road Trip To Iowa’s Most Abandoned Places.