Last Updated on June 20, 2023
Last Updated on June 20, 2023
Offering some of the best food in North Carolina, these Ocracoke Island restaurants rank among our favorite places to eat throughout the state. No matter when you want to grab a bite, these eateries will leave your belly happy and your mind full of delicious memories.
Raw oysters and fresh seafood are easy to find on Ocracoke Island, but many of these restaurants also serve food fit for the mainland.
Our guide will take you through all of the above, along with a handful of options for coffee and dessert. Even if you’re not hungry, bring your appetite along for this look at the best Ocracoke Island restaurants.
Before You Go (Tips for Dining at Ocracoke Restaurants)
Before you start reading about the best Ocracoke Island restaurants, here are some important things you should know:
- Ocracoke Island is very much a seasonal destination. If you are traveling during the off-season, you may find that your favorite restaurant might not be open yet.
- Also, a lot of these places to eat in Ocracoke island might have shorter seasonal hours during the colder months.
- Many restaurants keep their hours up to date on their Facebook pages, which we’ve linked where applicable. However, it is still a good idea to call and ask if you are trying to plan specific meal times.
List of the Best Ocracoke Island Restaurants
To visually plan your trip, these Ocracoke Island restaurants can be found on our Eastern North Carolina map and our NC Travel Map. Sadly, some local favorites are seasonal restaurants (such as Thai Moon and Back Porch Restaurant), so they may be closed if you visit in the winter months)
- The Flying Melon Cafe
- Helios’ Hideaway
- Howard’s Pub
- Jason’s Restaurant
- Ocracoke Oyster Company
- Plum Pointe Kitchen & 1718 Brewing
- Pony Island Restaurant
Back Porch Restaurant
110 Back Rd.
Back Porch Restaurant in Ocracoke is well-known and loved by both locals and tourists in the Outer Banks. It’s a cozy atmosphere, and the menu has a wide variety of options, but you will find it is primarily pasta and seafood.
Seafood dishes include specialty dishes like bacon-wrapped scallops, sheepshead, Spanish mackerel, calamari, and tuna. You’ll also find a large wine list and dessert available.
Get here early or expect to wait for a table, as it’s arguably the most popular restaurant in Ocracoke.
305 Irvin Garrish Highway
Dajio is where you can enjoy an upscale meal on Ocracoke Island, headlined by fresh local seafood.
Open for lunch and dinner, diners can expect handhelds like seared tuna wraps with cotija cheese and ginger aioli. Dajio’s luxurious and decadent serving of crab Mac and cheese is also a crowd-pleaser.
10 Lawton Ln
Whatever you do, plan at least one lunch around Eduardo’s. After one, we’ll expect that you’ll eat here several times during your Ocracoke vacation.
This stand serves some of the best tacos in North Carolina, and you can quote us on that! In fact, many Outer Banks vacationers take the ferry to Ocracoke just for a bite at Eduardo’s.
Crafting traditional Mexican fare and family recipes, Chef Eduardo Chavez uses fresh Ocracoke seafood and ingredients to craft mouthwatering burritos and tacos.
The Flying Melon Cafe
181 Back Road
The Flying Melon Cafe is easily one of the most popular Ocracoke Island restaurants.
Great for a nice sit-down dinner, this foodie hot spot specializes in high-end dining. Enjoy perfectly seared filet mignon, almond-encrusted tuna, and refreshing cocktails.
This establishment is definitely more upscale, but you’ll find friendly staff and an intimate setting.
589 Irvin Garrish Highway
We aren’t ashamed to say that we eat at this Ocracoke restaurant multiple times when we’re on the island. Helios’ Hideaway primarily serves Mediterranean food but this is also a sleeper breakfast spot!
Using their fresh-made pitas, the Hidaway creates incredible breakfast pita wraps, all warm, cheesy, and a perfect way to start your morning.
If you don’t make it to Helios’ for breakfast, then definitely head that way for lamb kebabs, pita pizzas, and heavenly baklava.
Read More: The Best Things to Do in the Outer Banks
1175 Irvin Garrish Highway
Before we ever set foot here, Howard’s Pub was one the most recommended Ocracoke Island restaurants by many of our readers!
Because as you’ll learn, this seasonally open place is loved and cherished by both locals and tourists alike. The casual vibe pairs nicely with the pub fare- and seafood-packed menu.
Howard’s Pub also offers outdoor seating with ocean and sound side views. It’s located at the very end of the Village, but don’t worry golf carters, you can still park here!
Another reason to love Howard’s Pub is if you’re traveling as a family. Kids’ meals are served on branded Frisbees that you can take to the beach and toss around!
1110 Irvin Garrish Highway
Before exploring the island, grab a couple of deli sandwiches at Jason’s Restaurant, also near the end of the Village. This place serves up great subs and sandwiches, and they are known for delicious pizza.
Jason’s is also the perfect spot for a takeout meal before fishing on the docks or kicking back with some cold brews at your rental.
Read More: The Best Beaches in North Carolina
Ocracoke Oyster Company
621 Irvin Garrish Highway
Where else on Ocracoke can you get live music, delicious oysters, AND fig-smoked barbecue? Ocracoke Oyster Company checks all those boxes and more.
For oyster lovers, their menu includes a variety of ways of preparedness including ceviche, Mon Luis, and Rockefeller.
But if it’s barbecue you are seeking, Ocracoke Oyster Company makes killer fig pork and smoked ribs!
Plum Pointe Kitchen & 1718 Brewing
1129 Irvin Garrish Highway
Located next to Howard’s Pub is another great restaurant that you’ll want to check out! The only brewery on the island, 1718 Brewing has a wide selection of craft beers with generous flight pours.
While you are sipping on some brews, make sure to order a stuffed crab pretzel from Plum Pointe Kitchen located inside the brewery. We definitely recommend ordering some of their sliders and the fresh catch of the day!
Pony Island Restaurant
51 Ocean View Road
Do you want the biggest hardiest breakfast on the island?! Pony Island Restaurant is where you go.
Pancakes, eggs, bacon, and more breakfast favorites await here and will prepare you for a hard day of relaxing on the beach. Open daily from 7:00 am to 11:30 am, expect a wait when you show up for a meal.
However, the service is fast and a table will open up soon!
180 Irvin Garrish Highway
SmacNally’s is the only waterfront restaurant on Ocracoke and one of the most highly recommended by locals! Featuring live music and plenty of outdoor dining, this place sources its meals straight from the docks.
Also known for mimosas and beer towers, we hope you stay long enough to watch the sunset over the harbor. Any meal on Ocracoke Island is magical, but one at SmacNally’s is extra special.
Thai Moon Ocracoke
180 Irvin Garrish Highway
If you are looking for Asian food in Ocracoke, Thai Moon is a busy hole-in-the-wall restaurant that serves some of the best curries, fried rice, satay, and Pad Thai in all of the Outer Banks.
They do offer takeout, but if you have a large order for dinner, it’s recommended to call the night before to make sure they can fill the order.
This restaurant is CASH ONLY.
Ocracoke Island Restaurants for Sweet Treats (and Coffee)
Beyond breakfast, lunch, and dinner, everybody needs something sweet (and caffeinated) in their lives! Our favorite Ocracoke Island restaurants are surrounded by some great coffee shops and sweet treats.
- Ocracoke Coffee Company
- Ocracoke Ice Cream and Fudge
- The Slushy Stand
- Zillie’s Island Pantry
Ocracoke Coffee Company
226 Back Road
During the season, Ocracoke Coffee Company is another great option for coffee on the island. Grab a coffee, delicious smoothie, and something tasty off their daily-changing menu.
Take any of the above back to your place or kick back and relax at this wonderfully located shop on Back Road.
Ocracoke Ice Cream and Fudge
272 Irvin Garrish Highway
Located in the Community Square, Ocracoke Ice Cream and Fudge is easy to recognize if you’ve brought kids along. The ice cream flavors change frequently and the fudge is homemade.
Pair all of those offerings with dockside views and it’s a tasty match made in heaven!
The Slushy Stand
473 Irvin Garrish Highway
The Slushy Stand is another spot that will make an impression on you and your little ones. Serving slushies, smoothies, and ice cream, you’ll quickly get to know the opening hours of this place.
Starting as a plywood shack in 1974, the Slushy Stand now occupies a beautiful two-story building with an inviting wrap-around porch.
Not only do their serve great treats, but the Slushy Stand is also one of the best places on the island to rent a bike!
Zillie’s Island Pantry
538 Back Road
Zillie’s Island Pantry will even admit that they’re not a restaurant, but we still think it belongs in our guide to Ocracoke Island restaurants.
Because people who love good food also tend to love good wine and beer! Zillie’s Island Pantry is the perfect place to hang out, relax, and sip on something delicious.
Plan ahead and join one of their Weekly Wine Tastings (reservations highly recommended) and enjoy wine, gourmet snacks, cheese, and a fabulous atmosphere!
Ready to Dine at These Awesome Ocracoke Island Restaurants?
These Ocracoke Island restaurants are another reason to fall in love with this place. Whether you’re searching for fresh seafood, great menus, and even better chefs, this island paradise along North Carolina’s Outer Banks has it all.
We love eating our way through these places to eat on Ocracoke Island and know you will, too.
If you know the island well, we’d love to know where you like to eat on Ocracoke. Please let us know in the comments section or by email.
Don’t forget to share your Ocracoke island food adventures in our North Carolina Travel Facebook Group!