The 12 Best Gumbo Spots in New Orleans

Creole Style Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo in a cast iron pot with White Rice and French Bread
LauriPatterson/Getty Images

There's no contest: the very best gumbo in New Orleans is...at the home of any given New Orleanian's Mama.

Most visitors to the city aren't lucky enough to get invited to Mama's house for Friday night gumbo, though. To sample this rich stew, thickened with okra, filé (dried ground sassafras leaves), or a dark roux, seasoned liberally with Creole spices, and served over rice, look to the pros.

From the city's finest gourmet eateries to down-home neighborhood joints, the vast majority of New Orleans restaurants offer gumbo of one sort or another on their menus. And really, presuming you like the rich, smoky flavors of the dish, it's worth trying a cup anywhere in town (or in the Southern part of the state). If you're really in the mood to dig into a nice big bowl, though, seek out these 12 restaurants that serve the very best of the best.

01 of 12

Liuzza's by the Track

Liuzza's By The Track restaurant, New Orleans

Infrogmation/Wikimedia Commons/CC By 2.0 

Address
1518 N Lopez St, New Orleans, LA 70119-3029, USA
Phone +1 504-218-7888

Liuzza's by the Track in Mid-City offers one of NOLA's favorite interpretations of Creole gumbo, chockfull of okra, seafood, and locally-made sausage swimming in a broth made with an extra-dark roux and seasoned with 17 secret herbs and spices. For the amount of food that you get, it's one of the best seafood deals in town, though you can get the gumbo seafood-free.

02 of 12

Mandina's

Mandina's Restaurant in New Orleans.

Infrogmation of New Orleans/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 3.0

Address
3800 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70119, USA
Phone +1 504-482-9179

Creole and Italian specialties nestle side-by-side on the menu at Mandina's, which is a favorite neighborhood restaurant in Mid-City. Though Mandina's is actually best-known for having some of the finest Turtle Soup au Sherry in town, it also makes an outstanding seafood gumbo. It's thick and pleasantly fishy, a nice reminder that gumbo shares a common ancestor with French bouillabaisse.

03 of 12

Mr. B's Bistro

Half-baked roux at Mr. B's Bistro in New Orleans.

Southern Foodways Alliance/Flickr/CC BY 2.0 

Address
201 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70130, USA
Phone +1 504-523-2078

One of the best fine-dining options in the French Quarter, Mr. B's Bistro serves contemporary high-end New Orleans cuisine with an emphasis on regional products and classic Creole culinary techniques.

Gumbo Ya-Ya, a house specialty, is actually a fairly straight-forward Cajun-style chicken and sausage gumbo, with a dark roux base, a big dose of the Cajun trinity (celery, bell pepper, and onion), and a heavy hand with Creole seasonings. The dish is simple and well-balanced, and the carefully-selected ingredients really shine.​

04 of 12

Gumbo Shop

The Gumbo Shop in the French Quarter of New Orleans

Jeremy Thompson/Flickr/CC BY 2.0 

Address
630 St Peter, New Orleans, LA 70116-3214, USA
Phone +1 504-525-1486

The chicken and andouille sausage gumbo at the Gumbo Shop is considered one of the best in the city by locals. The gumbo features boneless chicken, okra and andouille sausage in a smoky brown broth with just enough spice to be flavorful without overwhelming the senses.

If chicken and sausage isn't your speed there's also a seafood and okra gumbo on the menu that has shrimp, crab, okra, some tomato, and the holy trinity of celery, onion, and bell pepper in a delicious dark brother. And other preparations also occasionally make their way to the specials board—all of which are worth a sample. The restaurant's location in the French Quarter, just a stone's throw from Jackson Square, makes it an easy stop for most visitors to the city.

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05 of 12

Brigtsen's

Brigsten's Restaurant in New Orleans, Louisiana.

 Neeta Lind/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Address
723 Dante St, New Orleans, LA 70118-1013, USA
Phone +1 504-861-7610

Chef Frank Brigtsen made his bones in the kitchens at the legendary Commander's Palace and K-Paul's Louisiana Kitchen under Paul Prudhomme. His restaurant in the Carrollton neighborhood, Brigtsen's, features his own gourmet spin on Cajun and Creole classics. Try the chicken and andouille filé gumbo, which is beloved among connoisseurs of traditional Creole haute cuisine.

06 of 12

Prejean's at JazzFest

Chicken and andouille gumbo at Prejean's Restaurant in Lafayette, Louisiana.

Southern Foodways Alliance/Flickr/CC BY 2.0 

Address
3480 NE Evangeline Thruway, Lafayette, LA 70507, USA
Phone +1 337-896-3247

Once a year, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival turns the Fair Grounds and Race Course into a microcosm of Louisiana culture, and the food there is second to none. It's here that you'll be able to try the gumbo from Prejean's, a Lafayette, Louisiana institution in business for over 50 years. While Prejean's has three gumbos on its restaurant menu, at the Jazz & Heritage Festival, guests will be treated to a bowl of a pheasant, quail, and andouille gumbo, along with a crawfish enchilada and corn and shrimp bisque

It's worth the (steep) price of admission—not to mention the absurdly long line—and JazzFest is the only place to get it. You could make the two-hour drive out to the restaurant any time, but although it has great gumbos on its regular menu, this one is a festival-only special.

07 of 12

Herbsaint Bar and Restaurant

Herbsaint Restaurant in New Orleans

Herbsaint Restaurant

Address
701 St Charles Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130-3713, USA
Phone +1 504-524-4114

The gumbo of the night is an ever-changing (but always astoundingly delicious) proposition here at Chef Donald Link's upscale Louisiana eatery in the Central Business District. It's always an elegant preparation of a timeless classic, regardless of that night's particular ingredients.

In the wintertime, warm your bones with a velvety chicken and andouille gumbo. During Lent, be ready for hearty seafood varieties featuring plump Louisiana oysters and sweet gulf shrimp. A simple New Orleans rule of thumb: if Chef Link has anything to do with a gumbo, order it.

08 of 12

Li'l Dizzy's Cafe

Plastic bowl of gumbo with crab legs sticking out of it

Courtesy of Lil' Dizzy's Cafe

Address
1500 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70116, USA
Phone +1 504-766-8687

This small neighborhood restaurant in the Tremé neighborhood serves old-fashioned Creole fare, and one of the many house specialties is the Creole gumbo. It's full of chicken, shrimp, sausage, crab, and is heavy with the flavor of filé and Creole spices. The recipe is an old family recipe from the venerable Baquet restaurant family, and it's worth the trip off the beaten path to give it a try.​

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09 of 12

Dooky Chase's Restaurant

Dooky Chase's Restaurant in New Orleans

Krista/Flickr/CC BY 2.0 

Address
2301 Orleans Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119-5025, USA
Phone +1 504-821-0600

Chef Leah Chase has been serving up gumbos—alongside other Creole and soul food favorites—at her world-renowned Tremé restaurant since the 1950s. She's one of the only chefs in town, though, who cooks up gumbo z'herbes (from the French gumbo aux herbes, meaning gumbo made with greens).

It's a popular meatless Lenten dish, but Chef Chase's version includes pork, and she traditionally serves it on Holy Thursday, as her mother and grandmother did before her. She also includes it on the menu now and again throughout the year, so if you happen upon the restaurant on a day that it's available, order it. It's a rare and deeply traditional treat, and a delicious way to get your veggies. Even if you can't try gumbo z'herbes, the Creole gumbo is just as scrumptious.

10 of 12

Gabrielle Restaurant

Bowl of gumbo with smoked quail legs, rice, and three slices of sausage

Courtesy of Gabrielle Restaurant

Address
2441 Orleans Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119-5027, USA
Phone +1 504-603-2344

After closing its doors for 12 years following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, this neighborhood favorite reopened to customers in 2017. While plenty on the menu delights—like the slow roasted duck served with mushrooms and roasted red peppers over dirty rice and topped with a duck and orange sherry sauce—the gumbo cannot be missed. Because Gabrielle's menu changes frequently you won't know what you'll get until you're at your table, but past gumbos have included smoked chicken with beef sausage; a paring of chicken anise sausage and andouille sausage; and smoked guinea hen with shredded duck and duck sausage. However, the roux is always dark and rich, and the bowls will be so good you'll want another.

11 of 12

Restaurant R'Evolution

Stuffed roasted quail cut in half in a bowl of gumbo

Courtesy of Restaurant R'Evolution

Address
777 Bienville St, New Orleans, LA 70130, USA
Phone +1 504-553-2277

The chefs at Restaurant R'Evolution put modern spins on New Orleans and Cajun classics. While you could opt for the seafood gumbo (which has scallion rice), you'd be missing out if you went to R'Evolution and didn't order Death by Gumbo. Andouille sausage is paired with an entire stuffed roasted quail, oysters, and filé rice. If you have room for more, consider trying the snapping turtle soup, the triptych of roasted quail, or blue crab beignets.

12 of 12

Gris-Gris

Bowl of gumbo with a small mound of rice on top

Courtesy of Gris-Gris

Address
1800 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70130-5014, USA
Phone +1 504-272-0241

First opened in 2018, Gris-Gris quickly caught the attention of foodies, racking up plenty of awards in is first two years. The owner and executive chef, Eric Cook is a NOLA native and that shines in the menu. The gumbo here has chicken and andouille sausage with Louisiana popcorn rice. The recipe is inspired by the Vermilion Parish, an area of Louisiana heavily impacted by Hurricane Katrina.

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The 12 Best Gumbo Spots in New Orleans