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A week eating BBQ around IHOP, Kansas City, MO

Will be spending a week at IHOP and need your top 7 lunch and 7 Dinner locations. We love BBQ, and Mexican, but hey this is your town and are asking “your cant miss locations” If there is only one thing at a location but its smokin’ then a progressive meal is very acceptable.
Dives more than excaptable.
Under $50/person, under 1 ½ hour driving radus from 3311B E. Red Bridge Road Kansas City, MO 64137

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  1. Left KC when I was a year old, so I can't give you much answer, but pray tell, what is IHOP? Surely not the palace of pitiful pancakes?

    2 Replies
    1. re: lemons

      International House of Prayer of Kansas City (IHOP–KC) a christian missionary organization. I could say more if your interested but this is food site some would object.

      1. re: lemons

        ha! I thought the same thing before clarification, and was amused by the absurdity of needing a place near the pancake variety (as if one couldn't stray too far, just in case...).

      2. Here is a recent discussion of BBQ

        I like Brobecks-some of the best ribs you will find IMHO.

        1. El Camino Real for excellent street tacos, cheap.

          I second Brobeck's for ribs, brisket, and everything barbecue.

          LC's for burnt ends.

          BB's Lawnside for an evening of blues, beer and barbecue. It's an ugly roadhouse, but the 'cue is good and the beer is cold.

          2 Replies
          1. re: chileheadmike

            what about Wabash Bbq? or Woodyard Bar-B-Que

            1. re: Technor

              Woodyard is great. I've eaten out on the porch many times. Hopefully, the weather is nice and you can sit outside. Next to the woodyard.

              I've never eaten at Wabash so I can't speak to that.

              You should consider hitting Bryant's as well. They are the grandaddy. The brisket and burnt ends are very good.

          2. If you are a BBQ lover and this is your first time in KC I'd strongly recommend you make it your focus. Even this Texas boy will admit that KC is one of the meccas. By all means hit the original Arthur Bryant's... a unique BBQ experience. I just visited last fall, over 15 years since my previous visit, and it's same as it ever was.

            Of the places I have enjoyed, LC's is the closest to your locale, and while my experience with their burnt ends didn't leave me as gaga as some other posters, the place definitely has some serious smoke going on. Side dishes are pricy, but the quality is excellent.

            I preferred the burnt ends at Smokin' Guns over 2 different visits at LC's. Found them to be much more carefully trimmed and consistently meaty. The wall of ribbons attests to the SG expertise, and the potato casserole is to die for. I snagged the recipe from the website and made it for Thanksgiving and it was a big hit. The furthest drive for you as it is in North KC, and they do not stay open very late, but still worth it if you can make it work.

            The one place that I have yet to hit is Oklahoma Joe's, and they get consistent raves around here as being the best in town.

            Wherever you wind up, we will look forward to your reports!

            1 Reply
            1. re: GroovinGourmet

              GroovinGourmet, totally understand about focus on BBQ but I live in Maryland and the Mexican places that are worth driving to are far away and way too few, so thought I'd ask.
              one consideration is where to go for lunch and where to go later at night.
              Thought I'd get a list together and then plot it out.
              Chileheadmike has a point on weather, I'll add that to my notes.
              so far this is what I have gathered.

              Arthur Bryant's Barbeque
              1727 Brooklyn Ave, Kansas City, MO 64127
              Brobeck's Barbque
              4615 Indian Creek Pkwy, Overland Park, KS 66207 for ribs, brisket, and everything barbecue.
              B B's Lawnside Bar-B-Que
              1205 E 85th St, Kansas City, MO 64131Lawnside for an evening of blues, beer and barbecue. It's an ugly roadhouse, but the 'cue is good and the beer is cold.
              Cafe Weatherby
              8801 NW 112th Street, Kansas City, MO
              Danny Edwards Famous Kansas City Barbecue
              2900 Southwest Blvd, Kansas City, MO 64108
              Gates Bar-B-Q
              3205 Main St, Kansas City, MO 64111
              L C's Bar-B-Q
              5800 Blue Pkwy, Kansas City, MO 64129
              Oklahoma Joe's BBQ & Catering
              3002 W 47th Ave, Kansas City, KS 66103
              Oklahoma Joe's Barbecue
              11950 S Strang Line Rd, Olathe, KS 66062
              Smokin Guns Bbq & Catering
              1218 Swift Ave, Kansas City, MO 64116for burnt ends
              Smokehouse Bar-B-Que
              6304 N Oak Trfy, Kansas City, MO 64118
              El Camino Real for excellent street tacos, cheap.
              Wabash Bbq
              646 S Kansas City Ave, Excelsior Springs, MO 64024
              Woodyard Bar-B-Que

              OK, how does this sound so far?

            2. For some excellent Mexican grilled chicken add El Pollo Rey in KCK to your list. The menu isn't extensive and I consider it to be pretty authentic.. The guys at Pollo Tropical in South Florida need to come here and take lessons. Look for the stack of wood on the sidewalk. It is small but the chicken is some of the best in the KC metro, even better than any fried I have tasted.

              Another excellent Mexican restaurant is Frida's down in lower Overland Park. It is a hike but the food is not your typical Tex/Mex. I can recommend the chilies in nogada. http://www.kcrestaurantguide.com/frid...

              The Woodyard opens at 10am so you can have either a late breakfast or early lunch. When I was there at that time I got to spend some time talking to the Pitmaster. And try the burnt ends chili.

              1. 2 strikes on Guy Fieri & DDD. I visited Smokin' Guns yesterday for an early (4 PM) dinner. They might have won awards in 1999 but they had nothing going on yesterday afternoon. Ordered the Combo Platter with ribs, burnt ends & brisket. Was told if I wanted the burnt ends they counted as two meats so I ordered the brisket on the side. They brought my food out promptly and none of the meats tasted like they had been seasoned at all. Ribs had good texture but simply tasted like pork. Burnt ends were tender but no carmelization and no crispness at all. The brisket tasted like it had been barely re-heated in the microwave. Cold around the edges. The sweet potato fries were obviously leftover from lunch. The slaw had way to much celery seed. This is the second time I've tried a DDD recommendation and both have sucked (the other was in Omaha). Does Guy get special treatment? Perhaps. PS, the "hot" sauce was more sweet than hot. The original sauce was better. I had read that folks had a hard time finding the place. It's easy if you take 35 N to 16th St. and go west to Swift then south. My question is why bother? I'd say give Smokin' Guns a pass and go to OK Joes for your burnt and and all. Far better. 3 out of 10 on my Bar-b-que scale.

                1. New wrinkle, need places that are still serving 10 pm till midnight

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Technor

                    Ouch, that's gonna kill ya. BBQ places are generally early places -- it's the nature of the beast. You 'que all night and eat early. The chains might be open later. Can't say you'll get the best meats. You might be better off buying the good stuff early and reheating it (or eating it cold)

                    Jack Stack is open until 10:30 on Fridays and Saturdays.
                    Gates is open until midnight or 1:00 Am at most locations
                    B.B.s Lawnside is open until 11:00 on Fridays and Saturdays.

                  2. Have you been on your trip yet? If so, please tell us how your meals went.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: 2roadsdiverge

                      Nope the trip,starts this Saturday will make make sure I report back when im back

                    2. Last night I'm went to Jack stack BBQ  sat night 50 min wait from
                      630 to 725.
                      Smells great and the lot was 80 percent  full told to get the rib and chix combo by them guy at the car rental place.
                      Sampler chix, pork ribs burn ends seeet tea  veggies ( kBob and corn on Cobb)
                      Decent chix in mild sauce
                      Links a little dry but tasty much  improved with spicy dipping sauce.
                      Burnt ends moist not hard  great flavor.
                      Ribs very tender.  light dry rub With wet cooking method
                      The place is nice not fancy.Dark woods low lights. 800 covers a avg night so they are busy.
                      Great wait staff, they worked  hard. Good service
                      Took carrot cake with me very nice. Made a great breakfast.
                      Recommend the vist, even with the wait.
                      Oh you can call in and order to cut back the wait. There is a very active take out with half the wait.

                      Bottenline upfront  come highly remommended. Solid BBQ worth driving to.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: Technor

                        Yesterday went to Gates BBQ 
                        Hi may I help you greets every customer.  My visit was at 1500 hours on a sunday so the place was slow. While I ate over 20 folks went thru the line...lots of burn ends orders.
                        Service was with a smile. Service was very pleasant and truly they act as if they are there to help you enjoy your meal. I got checked up on 4 times. Lots of front and back of kitchen help.
                        Order at the counter pick up your tray and pay
                        By the time the transaction most of the orders are ready the rest is brought out to you where ever you sit.

                        Ordered Burnt ends and onion rings
                        The burnt ends are true to the name... Burnt, but moist AND  chopped served with Gates original BBQ sauce. Their sauce is a basic tomato base with a fair amount of Vinegar,  a slight bite of pepper  sauce (think tabasco) not black pepper.
                        They  also  have a sweet and mild sauce and it's just as its name suggests. Its a Tomato base sauce  with a honey sweetener and light pepper touch. Not too sweet.
                        A dozen large onion rings came as the order. I  would have thought they would be made on site but they came from a box, frozen. Good serviceable  rings but not good enough to drive for.

                        The facility was 60's era, rode hard but put away clean.  You can see into the kitchen and the wood smoke is about 7feet from the ground not a bad thing for a cue place. The eating area is smoke free. You hear the drumming from the cleavers in the back as they chop all the burn ends.
                        Bottom line upfront Worth driving to. Gates is o the cheap end for BBQ prices.

                        1. re: Technor

                          yeah KC isn't quite my style but it's still usually awfully good. sorry we got off to a misunderstood start (but surely you see the IHOP ref can be confusing - and I never mock any faith held by others)

                          it is always good to hear the impressions - I am long overdue for a KC trip..

                          1. re: hill food

                            Completely understood. Still needing to decide my next visit do you have any recommendations?

                            1. re: Technor

                              it has been too long to ask me. I'll be lurking to see what others might say.

                              KC is a very cool place with lots of choices. BBQ is good but certainly not the only thing. I remember lots of great food and a really optimistic energy in the folks.

                              and yeah that's said from a dour STL person who for some unexplained reason is supposed to hold animosity.

                              I could get into the differences in annoying depth. but that's of no use.

                      2. Oklahoma Joes BBQ 
                        1430 hrs
                        Order, pay and carry to table
                        Ordered Rib and brisket dinner with coleslaw 
                        Small end for the ribs. Light rub, light sauce, light smoke
                        Very tender, meaty. Quite good, boarding on the best I've ever had.
                        Large squeeze bottles of sauce on the tables, and folks used it "freely"
                        Brisket was very tender and if there was a problem with it was there wasn't enough :-) ( about 6 oz) no bark to speak of.
                        The whole experience was about balance. Everything worked together. Nothing stood out in an overpowering way... Each item was good, together they were great.
                        Bottom line upfront  damn good cue. My wife will be happy that we don't live here as I'd stop by too often.

                        10 Replies
                        1. re: Technor

                          Did you go to the Gas Station one? Love that stuff.....

                          1. re: FriendOfTheDevil

                            Yes sure did.
                            Today Brobecks bbq
                            Sauces are all Curleys, you can order them on line.
                            A hot and spicy original with mustard and black pepper curleys brand
                            A Sweet and mild is tomato based with molasses /brown sugar sweetener .
                             A Mild hickory is the basic kc sauce with liquid smoke, it's a solid sauce but nothing to write home about.
                            A Carolina sauce that's a yellow mustard and vinegar base with honey sweetener .

                            Ordered burn ends , ryibs with no sides, sweet tea
                            Burnt ends were one inch cubes, light bark very most and somewhat tender still they were very fall apart.
                            Ribs came with dry rub only, solid even coating, ready for sauce. Tender, moist and fall off the bone. You can get single pieces, s o. You order as many or as few as you want.

                            The places is in a strip mall store clean, simple, 5years in location( in an old dairy queen) blues on sound system.
                            The staff are old hands that waste no steps, are very friendly. I o ver heard them make recommendation....never the same thing exactly twice, they were truly responding to their customers and giving the best answer for them... I even hear one suggest a alternate way to give the customer what they were asking for.... A cheaper order.
                            Bottom line up front. A drive to place. You would take your family to and it very affordable 

                            1. re: Technor

                              How would you compare the ribs to OK's? "Fall off the bone" is not actually something I usually desire in ribs. That usually equates to braising. but I have heard good things about Brobeck's.

                              1. re: FriendOfTheDevil

                                I confess that I really like OK's better overall but I sure would not either one away. I completely agree with the way you defined fall off the bone. To me that is simply if you took the rib held it in one hand and with you other hand twisted and the meat. Come s readily away from the bone, that's my "fall. Off the bone"
                                Thanks for that insight.
                                Sadly I leave today at 0600 so I can't sample any more places. One thing for sure, where I live in Maryland there is nothing like this so it's been real fun eating here in folks town.
                                Thanks for all your comments and suggestions.

                                1. re: Technor

                                  Technor - you're from Maryland? no wonder you were craving good BBQ. I get a laugh when every six months or so someone asks for "do-not-miss" BBQ on the DC/Balto board and every time the consensus is to repeat "ehh, with a handful of exceptions it's few and far between"

                                2. re: FriendOfTheDevil

                                  I would say they come easily off the bone but not that different from what I have had at Ok Joe's(Olathe).
                                  As to the method of cooking, this is something I was just reading about. The tenderness is more a function of the internal temp reached in the meat than the method of cooking. At a certain temp the connective tissue melts. It can be dry heat or in a pan of fluid. It is the same with meat's internal water or juice. It is released at a certain temperature even if it is in a pot of water. The amount of external moisture only affects the superficial evaporative loss and crispness. I know that is contrary to conventional wisdom.

                                  1. re: wekick

                                    I have to respectfully disagree. I have burnt ribs before, and I am quite sure they reached at least as high or higher as some fall off the bone ribs I have had that were braised...They didn't fall off....In fact they tended to cling more... ; )

                                    1. re: FriendOfTheDevil

                                      There is a sweet spot. If the temp goes too high you overshoot this point and the proteins seize and squeeze out the water and the fat. You can reach the optimal temp by dry methods of cooking though, easier by a slow method.
                                      I don't agree with this guy that wrapping meat in foil will add anything more than superficial moisture and slow the cooking by reflecting heat but this article explains what happens at what temperatures. My understanding is that once the protein denatures and releases the water, it is irreversible. You can't uncook an egg. The braise may give you a bigger window for reaching the sweet spot because the temp of the liquid never goes over about 212F. Once it boils, the water escaping as gas takes the excess heat with it.


                                      I have been reading about the effects of heat/ humidity
                                      /convection in cooking/baking and roasting ad nauseam. :-b

                                      Sorry to be off topic.

                                      1. re: wekick

                                        I guess they didn't like my joking response to you Wekick...