horses in Cades Cove

Where to Eat: 7 Restaurants Near Cades Cove

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October 6, 2023

It’s easy to spend hours exploring Cades Cove and all the fun things to do along the loop. All this exploring can really work up an appetite. If you’re wondering where you can go to eat after a day of driving, hiking, and adventure, check out this list of seven restaurants near Cades Cove in Townsend, TN, where you can refuel.

1. Burger Master Drive-In

One of the most popular restaurants near Cades Cove is Burger Master Drive-In. This is a fast casual style restaurant in Townsend where you can get a quick bite to eat before or after your Cades Cove adventure. You can enjoy a juicy burger, classic hot dog, and crispy fries. If you need a sugary treat after a long day of hiking, you can order an ice cream cone, shake, sundae, or other cold treat!

2. Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro

glass of red wine in front of fire pitAn award-winning restaurant near Cades Cove is Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro. This restaurant uses fresh produce grown on site for a true farm-to-table experience. The regionally inspired menu changes based on the season and availability of the freshest produce and ingredients. You can enjoy a drink on the patio by the fire pit, share an artisan cheese board, or enjoy a tasty entree like beef short rib, crispy duck breast, or filet mignon.

3. Trailhead Steak & Trout

One of the best restaurants near Cades Cove for Southern cuisine is Trailhead Steak & Trout. At this restaurant you can find mouthwatering burgers, hand-cut steaks, and fresh trout and catfish dishes. Before your meal, start off with an appetizer like potato skins or fried green tomatoes to share. This hearty food is a great way to refuel after a day spent exploring all that Cades Cove has to offer.

4. Apple Valley Cafe

stack of pancakesOne of the few restaurants near Cades Cove that offers breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert is Apple Valley Cafe. If you want to grab a bite to eat in the morning before heading into Cades Cove, you can order biscuits, croissants, pancakes, and more. For lunch and dinner, you can enjoy juicy burgers, house-smoked barbecue, sandwiches, and salads. And you can’t pass up the opportunity to end your meal on a sweet note with a fried apple pie or hand-dipped milkshake!

5. Peaceful Side Social Brewery + Craft Kitchen

If you’re looking for unique restaurants near Cades Cove, check out Peaceful Side Social Brewery + Craft Kitchen. This restaurant specializes in “farm-to-counter” meals and fresh brews. You can enjoy delicious sandwiches, hand tossed pizza, and hearty entrees. The beer menu is extensive with a variety of IPAs, ciders, and other brews to sip on after your Cades Cove adventure. If you need a sweet treat, Peaceful Side Social also has the Peaceful Side Creamery where you can find unique ice cream flavors made with high-quality, locally sourced ingredients.

6. Little River Pub & Deli

close up of a paniniA laid-back place to eat and drink in Townsend is Little River Pub & Deli. This restaurant near Cades Cove is family owned and operated. You can relax in the beer garden on the river to sip a craft beer or cocktail. Their signature food items include sandwiches and paninis like the Hillbilly Hammich and “Not Pop’s” Grilled Cheese. During cooler months, you can warm up with a bowl of chili or seasonal soup.

7. Riverstone Family Restaurant

One of the local favorite restaurants near Cades Cove is Riverstone Family Restaurant. The interior of this American restaurant will make you feel right at home, and you’ll love their down-home Southern food. Riverstone Family Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so you can fuel up before heading into Cades Cove or after your day of exploration. Breakfast favorites include pancakes, French toast, omelets, biscuits and gravy, and more. For lunch and dinner, you can’t go wrong with a savory sandwich, po boy, hamburger steak, or fried catfish.

Places to Stay Near Cades Cove

These are some of the closest restaurants near Cades Cove that you can visit to fuel up before or after your Cades Cove adventure. If you’re looking for a place to stay near Cades Cove so you can experience all this part of the national park has to offer, check out these places to stay in the Smoky Mountains for the best cabin rentals and hotels in nearby towns!

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