Smokin' Hot Barbecue Joints

posted on Monday, March 29, 2021


Starbeck's Smokehouse

Often, what starts as a hobby, leads to a profession. For our local barbecue joints, that’s exactly what happened.  After years of personal experience and honing recipes, the time was right for a few local entrepreneurs to spread their wings (buffalo?) and fly on their own, meeting a need for barbecue restaurants in Cedar Falls.

However the start, their creations satisfy your craving for all things smoked. Just try to pass Big Barn BBQ on any given day without pulling in for a bite to eat after smelling their hickory or apple-smoked creations as you drive down 18th Street.  At Starbeck’s Smokehouse, it might be the creative façade that draws you to their door, but their barbecue baskets keep you coming back for more. Each local restaurant offers its own style and personality of smoked goodness. Try them all and visit often.   

Blue Barn BBQ

623 East 18th Street, Cedar Falls

Their outdoor pits are fired up every day to serve authentic, wood-fired entrees. Ingredients are sourced locally and sides are made from scratch. What kinds of meat do they smoke? In addition to smoked pork, chicken and beef, you may spot something special such as smoked cheese, halibut, salmon, Chilean sea bass, or lobster tail. Watch their Facebook page to find out what this family-owned business will smoke next in addition to their main menu. And do you want barbecue sauce? They have a list of 11 different sauces for you to try on your barbecue. At the Blue Barn BBQ, they hope to “meat you soon”!   

Famous Dave’s

6222 University Avenue, Cedar Falls

A Cedar Falls staple for years, this national chain restaurant provides your favorite barbecue favorites like Georgia Chopped Pork, Texas Beef Brisket, St. Louis-Style Beef Spareribs, and BBQ Chicken.

Smackhouse Blues and Barbecue

1250 College Square Mall, Cedar Falls

Walk in and order takeout from Smackhouse Blues and Barbecue. They say their barbecue is so good it will make you smack yo self.  Combo dinner choices include ribs, BBQ chicken, fish, shrimp or hot links. Specials include the Red Raider, ribeye, BBQ rib sandwich and salmon croquettes. 

Starbeck’s Smokehouse

6607 University Avenue, Cedar Falls

BBQ at it's finest right here in the Cedar Valley! Experience slow-roasted ribs, juicy smoked pork and succulent chicken prepared with savory seasonings, delicious sauces and rubs. All sides are house made and brag-worthy as well! In warm weather, you'll enjoy the outdoor patio!  

D & K Hickory House

315 Park Rd, Waterloo

D & K Hickory House is a well-known, family-owned and popular restaurant known for its delicious barbecue pork loin ribs. Actually, their menu states they have “the best darn ribs in Iowa.” The Hickory House has been dishing up barbecue ribs as well as steaks, chicken and seafood in its compact restaurant (about 15 tables) for 68 years. Its little size packs a big, flavorful punch.  


Hours of operation may vary without notice due to COVID-19. It’s always a good idea to confirm hours with your destination if you’re running on a tight schedule.  

If you’d like information about more Things to DoPlaces to Eat & Drink or a Place to Stay, we invite you to contact the Cedar Falls Visitor Center at 319-268-4266 (800-845-1955). We’re open  9:00 am - 5:00 pm, Monday - Friday. And, if you want to find additional events taking place in the Cedar Valley, visit our online calendar at CedarValley365.com.

Photo courtesy Blue Barn BBQ
Blue Barn BBQ, Cedar Falls

  1. barbecue
  2. bbq
  3. places to eat & drink

Subscribe To Our Blog