Considering Houston's close proximity to the Gulf, there's no shortage of good seafood inside the city's culinary scene. Gumbo is one of the most iconic seafood creole dishes you’ll find along the south coast. So we put together a list of some of Houston’s best takes on this seafood stew.
Brennan's of Houston, the 1967 beloved Houston landmark, is famous for its Texas Creole-inspired menu with longtime favorites like shrimp étouffée and their legendary Bananas Foster. When it comes to gumbo, Louisiana transplant Chef Danny Trace puts a Texan twist on the dish with creations like tabasco smoked pheasant and sausage gumbo, hunter’s gumbo with duck, rabbit, venison, andouille, and creole seafood gumbo made with crab, shrimp, and oysters.
Featuring contemporary Gulf Coast regional cuisine, the Rainbow Lodge has received national acclaim for both its menu and wine cellar. Their duck and andouille gumbo has been a signature items for 27 years and is highly regarded in the Houston culinary scene. Chef Kelly Boyd's menu features a variety of wild game and seafood. Rainbow Lodge has also won Wine Spectator magazine's "Award for Excellence" for 10 consecutive years.
Definitely the go-to spot for gumbo on Galveston Island, Gumbo Bar also serves up great salads, and po-boys. Made when you order, you know you are getting the freshest meal. Try the Mumbo Gumbo filled with shrimp, crab, oyster, chicken, sausage, and prime rib. Be sure you get some garlic bread for dipping. Not in the mood for gumbo? Ha-ha very funny, no one ever gets tired of gumbo!
Liberty Kitchen & Oyster Bar takes its gumbo very seriously. The oyster bar serves up its creole creation in a massive bowl topped with fried oysters and fried okra, unlike any other gumbo in town. To wash it down, grab one of over 20 local beers and an extensive cocktail menu. Liberty Kitchen sits in the heart of one of the most popular restaurant intersections in the Heights neighborhood of Houston.
Cousin Pappadeaux was an old Cajun relative of H.D. Pappas, a Greek immigrant who traveled to America in 1897 and opened numerous restaurants in Texas and beyond. A wise Cajun cook, Cousin Pappadeaux taught H.D. the magic and mystery of Cajun cooking. Today, Pappadeaux serves up the freshest seafood and Louisiana-style favorites like blackened opelousas filet, crawfish & shrimp fondeaux and their signature seafood gumbo.
This bustling seafood emporium is cleverly built into a novelty railroad car. The diverse menu of Texas Gulf Coast, Mexico, and Louisiana culinary influences appeals to the masses. Their gumbo is split into shrimp, crab, or both with a hefty portion of oysters. Also on the menu, expect accomplished frying (oyster po'boys, stuffed crab, shrimp) but equally fine mesquite grilling.
Texas flavor meets Lousiana creole at Gumbo Jeaux’s. The Cajun restaurant, which opened its first Houston location near IAH Airport in 2010, has developed a faithful following among north Houston residents. At Gumbo Jeaux’s guests can expect a range of wallet-friendly options in a laid-back, family-friendly space. The counter service restaurant tempts regulars with its catfish trout plate that comes topped in gumbo, crawfish tacos and crawfish etouffee, but there’s plenty for non-seafood lovers to choose from, too.