It’s not hard to find great food in Nebraska…but no one could possibly know where
all of the best places are. We’re not going to pretend that we’ve unearthed every last restaurant that you may not have heard of, but these are some of the lesser-known, under-the-radar places that don’t always jump right out at you. They’re listed here in alphabetical order.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Cactus Jack's Chuck Wagon, Grand Island (and other places)
If you've been to the Nebraska State Fair in the past several years, Cactus Jack's might not be unknown to you. This food truck is a local favorite with its inventive burgers and fun atmosphere. The truck travels quite a bit in central Nebraska; check out
Cactus Jack's website
to keep up with the schedule and upcoming events.
2. Daffodil Mediterranean, Lincoln
If you knew Daffodil back in its old location on the other side of 56th street, you might have thought it was gone forever. And if you've never visited this strip-mall gem, it's high time you did. Prepare to be blown away by the best Mediterranean food you'd ever had.
5500 Old Cheney Rd, Ste 21 (Old Cheney Center), Lincoln, NE 68516
3. Drifter Cookshack, Crawford
The spot isn't so much "unknown" as it is just a challenge to get to. The Drifter Cookshack is a step back in time located on the High Plains Homestead. This little pioneer-era village features several buildings that help recreate the historic setting, but the food is the real star of the show here. You can opt for a steak grilled over an open fire, salmon that the owner caught, tender ribs, or a number of other tasty options. Don't forget the pie!
263 Sandcreek Rd, Crawford, NE 69339
4. Jay Bros/Taste of India, Overton
We've featured this quirky Indian restaurant before, and we'll keep doing it forever because seriously, you need to try it. The restaurant is located inside a still-functional truck stop, and it looks a little sketchy at first. But once you order you'll understand: this is why you don't judge a book by its cover.
74975 Rd 444, Overton, NE 68863
5. John's Grecian Delight, Bellevue
This tiny hole-in-the-wall is located in the basement of Southroads Mall. Yes, the Southroads Mall that hasn't technically been a mall in something like 15 years. For a while there it seemed like John's was going to be the only business left in the whole place before the building was turned into a business park. Once you taste the Greek seasoned fries and tender, juicy gyro meat, you'll understand how this place has been able to stick around for decades.
1001 Fort Crook Rd N, Lower Level, Bellevue, NE 68005
6. Kerry's Restaurant and Catering, McCool Junction
It's no accident that this place looks like somebody's house - when you sit down for dinner you'll feel like you're at a family gathering. The down-home food and casual atmosphere keep fans coming back for more.
119 N 1st Ave, McCool Junction, NE 68401
7. Loma Tavern, Loma
Loma may be what is technically known as a "near-ghost town," but you wouldn't know it inside this building. It's always bustling with people. The tavern was closed for a few years after the previous owner died, but the new owners have successfully brought back this historic and beloved meeting place. You don't really need an address to find it because, well, it's the only business in Loma. But just in case:
2634 Wx Rd, Loma, NE 68626
8. Monowi Tavern, Monowi
You can't miss the Monowi Tavern, or Elsie's Tavern as it's sometimes called. Elsie is the sole inhabitant of this tiny rural town, and the owner/operator of this fine establishment. The tavern has actually received quite a bit of attention in recent years for being located in the smallest incorporated town in the country, but it's still a down-to-earth, classic Nebraskan place.
9 Broad St, Lynch, NE 68746
9. Nebrask Inn, Gross
At double the population of Monowi, Gross has an equally fun eatery. People drive from miles around to eat here and enjoy the atmosphere of this long-time local (which is a relative term) favorite.
49686 1st Ave, Gross, NE 68719
10. Oso Burrito, Lincoln
This isn't the Oso Burrito you might be thinking about that was on O Street but is now closed; this is the sister store on 70th & Van Dorn. It's in a strip mall, away from the street, behind the huge Brewsky's on the end. But trust us - drive a little bit down that strip mall and pick up lunch from Oso's for a creative, filling meal.
2840 S 70th St, Lincoln, NE 68506
11. Wit's End, Deweese
This laid-back bar and grill in tiny Deweese (population 67) serves surprisingly delicious food. You've almost got to wonder if they've been keeping it a secret on purpose.
311 S Deweese St., Deweese, NE 68934
12. The Woodcliff Restaurant, Fremont
You've got to cross the Platte from Fremont to get out to the county road where the Woodcliff resides, but it's worth the drive. The seasonally-changing menu is full of locally-sourced ingredients that will satisfy picky eaters and simple tastes alike. Stop by on Saturdays for karaoke night!
980 County Rd W, Fremont, Nebraska 68025
The food tastes even better when you have to work a bit to find it, don’t you think?