Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Great Plains >
May 19, 2013 07:29 PM

LA Hound Looking for Best BBQ in KC


We need your advice on the best BBQ in Kansas City or surrounding areas. We're flying into KC in the morning and will have time for a lunch before driving to Columbia. We will be staying in Independence on Friday night before flying back to Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon. It's a short trip, but I am really looking forward to Kansas City BBQ since we don't get good BBQ in LA.

What are your recommendations? So far, I have a list of Arthur Bryant's, Oklahoma Joe's, LC's, Bar-B-Q, and Smokin Guns BBQ.

If I'm coming from the airport and driving East, what would be the best place on the way?
Thanks in advance.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. OK Joe's was very good. Love the fries. Never got a chance to try the burnt ends, but if you want a sample get there early (Wed/Sat only)

    2 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      I Ipsedixit, Fancy meeting you here on the Great Plains Board!

      1. re: granadafan

        Bad the pleasure of visiting Overland Park, KC a while back.

    2. LC's is on the east side of the metro - I highly recommend the burnt ends! The ribs are good, too, but the burnt ends are sublime!

      1. Skip Arthur Bryant's. The burnt ends we had last time we were there were the consistency of canned dog food and the original store is a dump.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Samalicious

          I'm a big fan of burnt ends, so I will look forward to LCs. Hmm, I'm rather disappointed to hear about Arthur Bryants as it had very good reviews. How are the ribs?

          1. re: granadafan

            AB's can be hit or miss. When they're on, there's none better. I go to Bryant's for brisket, be it burnt ends or slices on a sandwich.

            LC's burnt ends are the standard all others are measured by. Truly wonderful. Their beans are great too.

            If you're in the South part of the KC suburbs, Brobeck's ribs are the best in KC.

            1. re: chileheadmike

              I love Brobeck's ribs. They have the spare ribs, St. Louis cut I believe and the baby backs on special too sometimes. I need to make a trip to KC.

            2. re: granadafan

              Funny we're talking about Arthur Bryant's. I went through three states and 27 BBQ joints in 10 days a while back, and AB was the worst. Hands down. And rude. I mean, really rude -- and I have a thick skin. Remember the soup Nazi? Well, that's how they behaved. Served me some dry, nasty BBQ right on a plastic cafeteria tray. I think I was supposed to pick up a plate before giving him the tray. Now, LC's (on the Blue Highway) is a dump but great folks and good BBQ. Best food I had was actually downtown, at Danny Edward's "eat it and beat it." Don't know if its still there.
              Pics are Bryant's, Edwards, and The Man, LC.

          2. Trip report: We had lunch at Oklahoma Joe's, not the original but the one on Roe Ave. Since we were going out to dinner that night, we decided to go light. We had the Carolina Pulled Pork sandwich and the Hog Heaven. The pulled pork was amazing. It had the right amount of smokiness, yet was very moist. I don't like my pork drowned in BBQ sauce so I appreciated their minimalist approach and adding the sauce ourselves. I'm regretting not trying the fries or another side. Oh well.

            On another night, after much debate, we decided on LCs since we were staying in Independence and wasn't too far away. We polled several people and they recommended LCs or Jack's Stack. As with the kind folks on here, Arthur Bryant was given mixed reviews.

            It's a good thing we read up on the storefront for LC's otherwise we might not have gone in and knew what to expect. We both had the burnt ends, which was a mistake. We should have split the plate as it was HUGE. Wow, they were good. Very juicy with terrific BBQ sauce. The baked beans were some of the best we've ever had. We prefer a more savory beans with the meat in it and not drowned in sugar. We took the 2nd plate back with us on the flight home. We were the envy of others as we ate it in the airport.

            Thanks for the recommendations!

            2 Replies
            1. re: granadafan

              So glad you had the burnt ends at LC's - yes, the portion size is huge and so good, it is hard to stop eating. Thanks for the report.

              1. re: granadafan

                I went to LC's for the first time in about five years recently. The burnt ends were fantastic. I was disappointed with Arthur Bryant's the first time I tried it. I had read all of the hype and was disappointed, especially with the sauce which is my least favorite sauce of just about any BBQ place I have been to. I have been back a few times since then and have had mixed experiences. The last time I was there about two years ago the meat was not very good.

                I went to Gates recently and enjoyed it, although I thought the prices were kind of high. I have only been to Oklahoma Joe's once but thought it was great. I hope to get back to KC soon and get some more burnt ends. Burnt ends are almost non-existent in Oklahoma City which has some decent BBQ.

                Bigray in Ok