One of the best things to come from 2020? Family-style platters from our favorite DC restaurants. One of the cheapest options? BBQ. And while you won’t have to put in the work (most of these restaurants boast 8+ hours of smoking), you will be left with lots of sticky fingers! Get out the finger bowls and wet wipes, these dinners are worth the mess. Read on for the best bbq family meals in the DC area.
When this black-owned business first opened, The Thrillist named it one of the 15 best new BBQ restaurants in the country. That buzz has only grown; today, this BBQ joint has created an almost cult-like following with their DC-style of smoked meats. Got a large crew? Check out the DCity All-in-Feast ($99). Featuring a pound of ribs, a pound of brisket, one dozen smoked wings and 5 large sides, no one is leaving the table hungry. They also sell meats by the 1/4 pound, half pound and full pound. The mac here is a must!
COVID-19 Update: Orders are available for no contact pick ups.
203 Florida Ave NW
Washington DC . 20001
For an easy family meal, order meats by the 1/2 pound at this BBQ joint. Orders include Texas toast and pickles. For hungry families, consider the Feed the Fam platter which includes a a half pound of brisket, a half pound of chopped pork, one pound of pork ribs and tips, a half chicken PLUS four large sides. FedPig also runs Fedwich from Kramer Books in Dupont Circle. Order from a number of sandwiches not available at the Adams Morgan restaurant (bonus: you can order books as a side). If this restaurant isn't already on your radar as a fam fav, it will be now: it consistently earns praise as one of the best cheap eats by the Washingtonian.
COVID-19 Update: Both Federalist Pig and the new pop-up, Fedwich, offer no-contact pick ups & delivery.
1654 Columbia Rd NW
Smoke & Barrel
If meat eaters and vegans co-exist in your house, check out the pit masters at this Adams Morgan restaurant. They sling smoked tofu along with vegan wings, vegan spare ribs and a Beyond Burger worth venturing out for. They have family favorites, like a smoked chicken, and platters large enough to feed 5 or more. Don't forget to add dessert to your order; their sweet potato donuts are a must. Insider tip: you can also get their famous cocktails to go.
COVID-19 Update: Smoke & Barrel is now taking indoor reservations at a limited capacity. Masks are required. They also offer pick up & delivery.
2471 18th St. NW
This Anne Arundel county restaurant often runs out of their famous, award-winning wings, so get here early if you want to grab plates. Their fresh BBQ is smoked for 12 hrs. daily over pecan wood. A must-try is their smoked fried chicken; this is not your average chicken finger platter. After being pecan wood-smoked for 3 hours, the chicken is flash fried. Picky eaters under 12 will find the usual suspects: mac & cheese, grilled cheese, hamburgers and more. We bet your budding foodie will want to order off the main menu here.
COVID-19 Update: The Hideaway is open for indoor seating (at 50% capacity per the Governor’s order), outdoor seating, takeout and delivery.
1439 Odenton Road
Odenton, MD 21113
This Baltimore outpost serves authentic Texas-style BBQ that uses white oak wood in its smoker. You can buy meat by the 1/2 pound here, including pulled pork, brisket and ribs. We recommend the whole smoked chicken ($18) for family dinners.
COVID-19 Update: Curbside pick up & delivery are available. Woodrow's is now serving in a limited capacity outdoors; reservations are suggested.
1607 Sulgrave Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21209
Blue Pit BBQ & Whiskey Bar
You can get food & drinks to-go at this Baltimore restaurant where sides take center stage (think four-cheese mac, pickled jalapeños, cornbread and collard greens). Their 18-hour cooked pulled pork put them on the map, but their vegan pulled jackfruit is worth a try for those that like to go meatless on Mondays.
COVID-19 Update: The patio is now open. You can still get your food delivered (or request a no contact pick up).
1601 Union Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21211
Willard's Real Pit BBQ
If you're looking to feed a group, Willard's has platters available to serve families of 4 (The Feedbag, $57.99), 6 (The Supper, $95.99) and 8 (The Feast, $119). If these oversized portions look too large for your table, Willard's also offers a Snack Pack for 8 ($37.99), which will easily feed a family with tots for days. If this joint is a drive for you, be sure to pick up their sauces and rubs at the store so you can replicate their dishes at home!
COVID-19 Update: Available for pick up & delivery within a 5 mi. radius.
4300 Chantilly Shopping Center
Chantilly, VA 20151
703 488 9970
11790 Baron Cameron Ave
Reston, VA 20190
703 429 1755
Worth-The-Drive: Monk's BBQ
Meat is more fun to eat when it comes on a stick! Pork belly skewers ($5.99) a hit with adults and kids alike. Grab a spoon because the house made sauces are the star of many dishes. A Blackberry Whiskey BBQ sauce features near-by Corcoran Vineyard's Blackjack Blackberry Wine and Purcellville's own Catoctin Creek Distilling's Roundstone Rye Whiskey. Don't forget to get some scoops before you go at the Tipped Cow Creamery next door.
COVID-19 Update: The dining room is now open and features live music on Fri. & Sat.
251 N 21st St.
Purcellville, VA 20132
—Meghan Yudes Meyers