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The Pitmaster’s Nap at Bark City BBQ includes turkey, ribs, sausage, and pulled pork with a number of sides
The Pitmaster’s Nap at Bark City BBQ
Brooke Jackson-Glidden / EPDX

14 American Barbecue Restaurants and Food Carts to Try in Greater Portland

Where to find standout barbecue around the city and its suburbs

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The Pitmaster’s Nap at Bark City BBQ
| Brooke Jackson-Glidden / EPDX

Though it might be unexpected this far north, Portland is actually home to an expanding multitude of world-class restaurants and food carts dishing out racks of ribs that fall off the bone, slabs of smoky briskets, juicy sausages, and pulled pork tossed in a smattering of sweet, spicy, and tangy sauces. It’s even made headlines in Texas, where Texas Monthly barbecue editor Daniel Vaughn said Portland is home to some of the best Texas BBQ outside of Texas. Here, we nail down a list of the best spots in Portland where locals and Southern ex-pats are doing the most, from smoking peppery beef ribs to slathering savory vegan sauces on seitan. Pass the barbecue sauce.

A number of Portland restaurants have resumed onsite dining service. The level of service offered is indicated on each map point. However, this should not be taken as endorsement for onsite dining, as there are still safety concerns: for updated information on coronavirus cases in your area, please visit the Oregon Health Authority’s COVID update page. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Wolf's Head Smokehouse

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4250 SW Rose Biggi Ave
Beaverton, OR 97005

While Beaverton’s diverse cart pod BG’s Food Cartel is home to not one, but two great barbecue carts, we like Wolf’s Head for its variety of stellar sauces and meticulous smoking technique. Pitmasters Jason Wittek and Roy Doty combine barbecue methods from Texas to the Carolinas, serving burnt ends, brisket, ribs, and chopped pork and sausage. Wolf’s Head really stands out with its selection of sandwiches, burgers, and even a mac-and-cheese-stuffed brisket burrito. It’s currently open from Wednesday to Sunday for walk-up orders, with seating provided by BG’s.

Cornbread and brisket are sitting atop pork ribs
Brisket, ribs, cornbread, and coleslaw from Wolf’s Head
Ron Scott/EPDX

2. P & S Premium Smokehouse LLC

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4810 SW Western Ave
Beaverton, OR 97005

Nestled behind Uwajimaya in Beaverton’s Raleigh West neighborhood, this shiny silver cart dishes out saucy ribs, brisket, and sausage alongside a smattering of familiar sides ranging from well-seasoned collard greens to decadent mac and cheese. Rather than claiming a specific regional style, it dubs itself “family reunion style barbecue,” reminiscent of the big meals and platters that owners Patrick and Siri Freeman grew up eating at large family gatherings. Ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender, and the barbecue sauce is sweet and a little tangy. The smoke is rolling Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for walk-up orders with outdoor seating, and delivery is available.

Silver barbecue food cart is shown
P&S Smokehouse Cart
Ron Scott/EPDX

3. Homegrown Smoker

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8638 N Lombard St
Portland, OR 97203

The cheery, bright cafe that put vegan barbecue on the map in Portland serves faux meats like smoked tempeh ribs with hush puppies, barbecue beans, and “macnocheeese.” The platter of vegan barbecue meats is always a safe bet, but regulars often opt for sandwiches or burritos with macnocheese and bbq soy curls. It is open from Thursday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for takeout only.

4. Smoke Squad

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11540 SW Pacific Hwy
Portland, OR 97223
(503) 380-0688

Formerly known as Jeka’s, Smoke Squad has relocated into the Munchies Food Pod in Tigard where the aromas wafting by from the massive smoker lure in patrons from other nearby carts. Smoke Squad smokes tri-tip and spare ribs super slow, over a mix of oak and fruit woods. Owners Jeka Storozhuk and Jacob Nicholson aren’t beholden to any particular region’s barbecue rubs or sauces of choice, instead preferring to put their own spin on barbecue, using techniques from a variety of regions. The cart is open Tuesday to Saturday for both walk-up and delivery.

A black food cart is shown with the owner, Jeka, inside wearing a face mask, holding a jar of sauce
Smoke Squad Food Cart
Ron Scott/EPDX

5. Southern Kitchen PDX

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3503 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97227
(971) 325-8701
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Right on the south section of Mississippi street, Southern Kitchen serves Georgia-style Southern comfort food. The menu here includes much more than just barbecue, but the incredibly saucy spare ribs merit the trip on their own. The sides and other options are all naturally great pairings with the ribs, especially the golden hush puppies and crispy-fried fish. Open Wednesday to Sunday for takeout and delivery.

6. Miss Delta Restaurant and Bar

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3950 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97227
(503) 287-7629
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North Mississippi has no shortage of dining choices, but this cozy Southern restaurant has a solid roster of po’boys, catfish sandwiches, gumbo, and other southern staples alongside some especially smoky barbecue. The move here is certainly the Miss Delta Meats, a $34 pick-three of pulled pork, baby back ribs, andouille sausage, blackened chicken, or brisket. This is big, oak-smoked flavor with a barbecue sauce that hits tangy with lingering pepper notes. Miss Delta is open Thursday to Monday for dine-in, delivery, and takeout.

ribs, brisket, sausage, pickles, and barbecue sauce are seen in a take-out box
Ribs, brisket and sausage from Miss Delta
Ron Scott/EPDX

7. The People's Pig

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3217 N Williams Ave
Portland, OR 97227
(503) 282-2800
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Cliff Allen started serving barbecue in this town from a cart before moving into the permanent location on North Williams in 2014. All the classic barbecue meats are served here, along with less-common offerings like leg of lamb and porchetta. Customers should be fully prepared to leave The People’s Pig with clothes soaked in smoke. The Pig is padlocked Monday and Tuesday, but is open otherwise for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

A small blue structure and sidewalk are shown
The People’s Pig
Ron Scott/EPDX

8. Matt's BBQ

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4709 NE M L King Blvd
Portland, OR 97211

In December 2015, pitmaster Matt Vicedomini made his entrance in Portland’s barbecue scene, smoking Texas-style, pink-ringed brisket, marbled with fat and fall-apart tender. He now operates out of the Prost Marketplace, and while that pod has some stiff competition, Matt’s cart can still boast some lengthy wait times, even during the pandemic. While the large “Total Shebang” platter is not currently available, all the meats are up for grabs in half- or full-pound portions, with beef ribs available only by advanced reservation. Alongside these meats are Matt’s signature sauces, like the tangy peach mustard and spicy-sweet cherry chipotle. Matt’s BBQ is open seven days a week for takeout, but orders must be placed on the website.

Matt’s blue and white food truck is seen, with signs showing how to order up front
Matt’s BBQ @ Prost
Ron Scott/EPDX

9. Botto’s BBQ

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3120 SE Milwaukie Ave
Portland, OR 97202
(971) 334-5397
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After transitioning from a cart in Northwest Portland, Botto’s BBQ is now bringing its back-to-basics mantra of “salt, pepper, and smoke” over on SE Milwaukie Ave, in the former Pok Pok Wing space. While the juicy and tender brisket and gooey mac and cheese are the main attractions here, the cheesy brisket hash is an absolute must. Botto’s also smokes turkey, kielbasa, and carnitas chili verde over white oak. It is open Wednesday through Sunday for takeout as well as outdoor dining.

10. Reverend's BBQ

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7712 SE 13th Ave
Portland, OR 97202
(503) 327-8755
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From the team behind Laurelhurst Market, this family-friendly Sellwood restaurant brings Carolina-style chopped pork shoulder alongside barbecue favorites like St. Louis-style ribs and smoked brisket from Brandt Beef. It also fries chicken and wanders into Creole territory with andouille sausages, hush puppies, and chicken and sausage gumbo; however, the under-the-radar hit is the silky, creamy grilled polenta with creamed corn and tasso ham. Those looking for vegetarian items can find smoked tempeh sandwiches and meatless sides and salads. Reverend’s is open seven days a week for dine-in and patio dining, along with takeout and delivery.

11. Podnah's Pit BBQ

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1625 NE Killingsworth St
Portland, OR 97211
(503) 281-3700
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Rodney Muirhead, the man behind Podnah’s, really helped kick off Portland’s barbecue scene when he opened his shop in 2006. More than a decade later, it’s still one of the top places in town for smoked meats, with the best example being the Pitboss Platter. The monster plate comes with Texas-style brisket, Carolina-style pulled pork, ribs, a sausage link, a pair of sides, and cornbread. Podnah’s is open Wednesday to Sunday for outdoor dining, as well as takeout and delivery.

12. Holy Trinity Barbecue

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3582 SE Powell Blvd
Portland, OR 97202
(469) 964-9256
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Now a part of the John’s Original Marketplace pod, Holy Trinity offers a variety Texas-style barbecue. The cart is run by Tex-pat Kyle Rensmeyer, who had originally begun smoking meats as a side hustle until he made the decision to drop his day job and do barbecue full-time. In true Texas barbecue form, Holy Trinity only offers meats by weight or in sandwich form. The menu is simple, featuring giant beef ribs, brisket, snappy Czech-style sausage made in-house, pulled pork, and pork belly burnt ends accompanied by cheesy grits, coleslaw, and beans. Open Wednesday to Sunday for takeout.

13. Bark City BBQ

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5235 NE Sandy Blvd
Portland, OR 97213
(971) 258-4411
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Recently relocated to the Rose City Food Park on Sandy, Bark City BBQ resides somewhere near the realm of Carolina-style barbecues, heavy with vinegar-based and mustard sauces. But its Oregon-oak-smoked meats bring local flavor into favor, from slabs of tender brisket with bright pink smoke rings to saucy chopped pork. It is open Wednesday to Sunday for takeout and delivery, with seating available at the Rose City Food Park.

14. Verajmes Kitchen

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16101 SE Division St
Portland, OR 97236
(503) 607-6717

This Centennial food cart is a hidden gem soul food spot on the east side, with staples like collard greens and fried catfish. However, pros know to get the cart’s wicked-juicy barbecue chicken and tender ribs, speckled with char. It’s open Tuesday through Saturday, from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. for takeout and delivery, with limited outdoor seating.

1. Wolf's Head Smokehouse

4250 SW Rose Biggi Ave, Beaverton, OR 97005
Cornbread and brisket are sitting atop pork ribs
Brisket, ribs, cornbread, and coleslaw from Wolf’s Head
Ron Scott/EPDX

While Beaverton’s diverse cart pod BG’s Food Cartel is home to not one, but two great barbecue carts, we like Wolf’s Head for its variety of stellar sauces and meticulous smoking technique. Pitmasters Jason Wittek and Roy Doty combine barbecue methods from Texas to the Carolinas, serving burnt ends, brisket, ribs, and chopped pork and sausage. Wolf’s Head really stands out with its selection of sandwiches, burgers, and even a mac-and-cheese-stuffed brisket burrito. It’s currently open from Wednesday to Sunday for walk-up orders, with seating provided by BG’s.

4250 SW Rose Biggi Ave
Beaverton, OR 97005

2. P & S Premium Smokehouse LLC

4810 SW Western Ave, Beaverton, OR 97005
Silver barbecue food cart is shown
P&S Smokehouse Cart
Ron Scott/EPDX

Nestled behind Uwajimaya in Beaverton’s Raleigh West neighborhood, this shiny silver cart dishes out saucy ribs, brisket, and sausage alongside a smattering of familiar sides ranging from well-seasoned collard greens to decadent mac and cheese. Rather than claiming a specific regional style, it dubs itself “family reunion style barbecue,” reminiscent of the big meals and platters that owners Patrick and Siri Freeman grew up eating at large family gatherings. Ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender, and the barbecue sauce is sweet and a little tangy. The smoke is rolling Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for walk-up orders with outdoor seating, and delivery is available.

4810 SW Western Ave
Beaverton, OR 97005

3. Homegrown Smoker

8638 N Lombard St, Portland, OR 97203

The cheery, bright cafe that put vegan barbecue on the map in Portland serves faux meats like smoked tempeh ribs with hush puppies, barbecue beans, and “macnocheeese.” The platter of vegan barbecue meats is always a safe bet, but regulars often opt for sandwiches or burritos with macnocheese and bbq soy curls. It is open from Thursday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for takeout only.

8638 N Lombard St
Portland, OR 97203

4. Smoke Squad

11540 SW Pacific Hwy, Portland, OR 97223
A black food cart is shown with the owner, Jeka, inside wearing a face mask, holding a jar of sauce
Smoke Squad Food Cart
Ron Scott/EPDX

Formerly known as Jeka’s, Smoke Squad has relocated into the Munchies Food Pod in Tigard where the aromas wafting by from the massive smoker lure in patrons from other nearby carts. Smoke Squad smokes tri-tip and spare ribs super slow, over a mix of oak and fruit woods. Owners Jeka Storozhuk and Jacob Nicholson aren’t beholden to any particular region’s barbecue rubs or sauces of choice, instead preferring to put their own spin on barbecue, using techniques from a variety of regions. The cart is open Tuesday to Saturday for both walk-up and delivery.

11540 SW Pacific Hwy
Portland, OR 97223

5. Southern Kitchen PDX

3503 N Mississippi Ave, Portland, OR 97227

Right on the south section of Mississippi street, Southern Kitchen serves Georgia-style Southern comfort food. The menu here includes much more than just barbecue, but the incredibly saucy spare ribs merit the trip on their own. The sides and other options are all naturally great pairings with the ribs, especially the golden hush puppies and crispy-fried fish. Open Wednesday to Sunday for takeout and delivery.

3503 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97227

6. Miss Delta Restaurant and Bar

3950 N Mississippi Ave, Portland, OR 97227
ribs, brisket, sausage, pickles, and barbecue sauce are seen in a take-out box
Ribs, brisket and sausage from Miss Delta
Ron Scott/EPDX

North Mississippi has no shortage of dining choices, but this cozy Southern restaurant has a solid roster of po’boys, catfish sandwiches, gumbo, and other southern staples alongside some especially smoky barbecue. The move here is certainly the Miss Delta Meats, a $34 pick-three of pulled pork, baby back ribs, andouille sausage, blackened chicken, or brisket. This is big, oak-smoked flavor with a barbecue sauce that hits tangy with lingering pepper notes. Miss Delta is open Thursday to Monday for dine-in, delivery, and takeout.

3950 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97227

7. The People's Pig

3217 N Williams Ave, Portland, OR 97227
A small blue structure and sidewalk are shown
The People’s Pig
Ron Scott/EPDX

Cliff Allen started serving barbecue in this town from a cart before moving into the permanent location on North Williams in 2014. All the classic barbecue meats are served here, along with less-common offerings like leg of lamb and porchetta. Customers should be fully prepared to leave The People’s Pig with clothes soaked in smoke. The Pig is padlocked Monday and Tuesday, but is open otherwise for dine-in, takeout, and delivery.

3217 N Williams Ave
Portland, OR 97227

8. Matt's BBQ

4709 NE M L King Blvd, Portland, OR 97211
Matt’s blue and white food truck is seen, with signs showing how to order up front
Matt’s BBQ @ Prost
Ron Scott/EPDX

In December 2015, pitmaster Matt Vicedomini made his entrance in Portland’s barbecue scene, smoking Texas-style, pink-ringed brisket, marbled with fat and fall-apart tender. He now operates out of the Prost Marketplace, and while that pod has some stiff competition, Matt’s cart can still boast some lengthy wait times, even during the pandemic. While the large “Total Shebang” platter is not currently available, all the meats are up for grabs in half- or full-pound portions, with beef ribs available only by advanced reservation. Alongside these meats are Matt’s signature sauces, like the tangy peach mustard and spicy-sweet cherry chipotle. Matt’s BBQ is open seven days a week for takeout, but orders must be placed on the website.

4709 NE M L King Blvd
Portland, OR 97211

9. Botto’s BBQ

3120 SE Milwaukie Ave, Portland, OR 97202

After transitioning from a cart in Northwest Portland, Botto’s BBQ is now bringing its back-to-basics mantra of “salt, pepper, and smoke” over on SE Milwaukie Ave, in the former Pok Pok Wing space. While the juicy and tender brisket and gooey mac and cheese are the main attractions here, the cheesy brisket hash is an absolute must. Botto’s also smokes turkey, kielbasa, and carnitas chili verde over white oak. It is open Wednesday through Sunday for takeout as well as outdoor dining.

3120 SE Milwaukie Ave
Portland, OR 97202

10. Reverend's BBQ

7712 SE 13th Ave, Portland, OR 97202

From the team behind Laurelhurst Market, this family-friendly Sellwood restaurant brings Carolina-style chopped pork shoulder alongside barbecue favorites like St. Louis-style ribs and smoked brisket from Brandt Beef. It also fries chicken and wanders into Creole territory with andouille sausages, hush puppies, and chicken and sausage gumbo; however, the under-the-radar hit is the silky, creamy grilled polenta with creamed corn and tasso ham. Those looking for vegetarian items can find smoked tempeh sandwiches and meatless sides and salads. Reverend’s is open seven days a week for dine-in and patio dining, along with takeout and delivery.

7712 SE 13th Ave
Portland, OR 97202

11. Podnah's Pit BBQ

1625 NE Killingsworth St, Portland, OR 97211

Rodney Muirhead, the man behind Podnah’s, really helped kick off Portland’s barbecue scene when he opened his shop in 2006. More than a decade later, it’s still one of the top places in town for smoked meats, with the best example being the Pitboss Platter. The monster plate comes with Texas-style brisket, Carolina-style pulled pork, ribs, a sausage link, a pair of sides, and cornbread. Podnah’s is open Wednesday to Sunday for outdoor dining, as well as takeout and delivery.

1625 NE Killingsworth St
Portland, OR 97211

12. Holy Trinity Barbecue

3582 SE Powell Blvd, Portland, OR 97202

Now a part of the John’s Original Marketplace pod, Holy Trinity offers a variety Texas-style barbecue. The cart is run by Tex-pat Kyle Rensmeyer, who had originally begun smoking meats as a side hustle until he made the decision to drop his day job and do barbecue full-time. In true Texas barbecue form, Holy Trinity only offers meats by weight or in sandwich form. The menu is simple, featuring giant beef ribs, brisket, snappy Czech-style sausage made in-house, pulled pork, and pork belly burnt ends accompanied by cheesy grits, coleslaw, and beans. Open Wednesday to Sunday for takeout.

3582 SE Powell Blvd
Portland, OR 97202

13. Bark City BBQ

5235 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland, OR 97213

Recently relocated to the Rose City Food Park on Sandy, Bark City BBQ resides somewhere near the realm of Carolina-style barbecues, heavy with vinegar-based and mustard sauces. But its Oregon-oak-smoked meats bring local flavor into favor, from slabs of tender brisket with bright pink smoke rings to saucy chopped pork. It is open Wednesday to Sunday for takeout and delivery, with seating available at the Rose City Food Park.

5235 NE Sandy Blvd
Portland, OR 97213

14. Verajmes Kitchen

16101 SE Division St, Portland, OR 97236

This Centennial food cart is a hidden gem soul food spot on the east side, with staples like collard greens and fried catfish. However, pros know to get the cart’s wicked-juicy barbecue chicken and tender ribs, speckled with char. It’s open Tuesday through Saturday, from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. for takeout and delivery, with limited outdoor seating.

16101 SE Division St
Portland, OR 97236

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