You are here

23 Jul 2019
Related Items: 

If you’re paying a visit to the Lowcountry, there are several classic Charleston dishes you really ought to try. After all, Charlestonian cuisine  -   good southern cooking with an elevated twist  -  is one of the main draws of the Lowcountry.  Local restaurants have made many national “best of” lists, and for good reason. Many of the classic Charleston dishes have roots in the Gullah culture.  Oftentimes its was enslaved Africans who ran the kitchens, both private and public, of the historic city, who developed the dishes. AFAR Travel Guide published its list of the eight essential Charleston dishes to taste while you’re in the Lowcountry. Actually, it’s more than just a simple list of things to eat.  It also delves into the history of the Charleston dishes, plus suggests some of the best establishments around for you to try them.  

Basically, in a nutshell, here's the list of 8 essential Charleston dishes:


  • Purloo (a well-seasoned rice dish cooked with meat or seafood, onions and garlic, also known as Gullah rice). Best places to find it: Purlieu, Poogan’s Porch, Husk, or The Grocery.
  • Chicken Bog (chicken cooked down till falling apart, then stirred into rice with peppers and onions), The Shelter.
  • Hoppin’ John (black-eyed peas cooked with rice), Virginia’s on King or Husk.
  • Frogmore Stew, aka Lowcountry Boil (shrimp, sausage, corn and potatoes boiled all together with spices), Fleet Landing or Bowens Island.
  • Steamed Oysters (steamed over an open fire and served in a bucket); Bowens Island.
  • She-Crab Soup (crab bisque with crab roe and sherry); Anson, Revival or Saffron Grill & Bakery.
  • Shrimp & Grits (fresh local shrimp sautéed with bacon, onions, or the like, served with its light gravy over grits); Slightly North of Broad or Acme Lowcountry Kitchen on the Isle of Palms, which offers 10 different variations!
  • Boiled Peanuts (a classic dish of green peanuts boiled in salted and spiced brine); Hyman’s Seafood, the Wreck of the Richard & Charlene, or the Charleston Riverdogs baseball games.

Here’s a link to the AFAR article with the full story. Honestly, reading over the list is making me seriously hungry.  By the way, the Afar list mentioned Hominy Grill multiple times, e.g. for their famous Shrimp & Grits  -  the recipe I make myself.  Alas, Robert Stehling had closed his famous landmark restaurant after a long and highly successful run. So check out some of the Charleston dishes that feed people in the Lowcountry – both locals and those from afar.  And remember when you are looking for the best in beach house rentals Charleston SC, to call Exclusive Properties. All best, Lowcountry Lisa your Isle of Palms vacation blogger