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13 of the Best Restaurants in Concord and Cabarrus County

Published by Christina Riley. Last Updated on February 22, 2024.

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We’re huge fans of Cabarrus County and have found some pretty amazing restaurants in Concord, Kannapolis, and Mount Pleasant. If you’re looking to visit this fun part of North Carolina, we want you to come prepared with this list of places to eat in Concord NC.

Whether you are staying at Great Wolf Lodge, in town for a race, or looking for a fun day trip from Charlotte, we’ve got you covered on where to eat in Concord and beyond.

If you’re searching for a specific place, here’s how we’ve organized this guide:

  • 9 Restaurants in Concord
  • 3 Restaurants in Kannapolis
  • 2 Restaurants in Mount Pleasant

Whether you’re a new resident, a frequent visitor, or a local, we’re leaving no detail behind. If you live in Cabarrus County and are wondering, “What are the best restaurants near me?” we think this NC travel guide will help you out!

Read More: Things to Do in Concord and Cabarrus County

Restaurants in Concord

The Smoke Pit 

Address: 796 Concord Pkwy, Concord, NC

The first of our favorite restaurants in Concord is a great stop for barbecue! The Smoke Pit is open for breakfast and lunch with large portions of smoked meat and house-made sides.

If you are looking for more than just NC barbecue, The Smoke Pit features Texas, Kansas City, and Memphis-style too! 

All of the meat is butchered on-site and smoked over local hickory for the best possible flavor. In case the name sounds familiar, the Smoke Pit has locations in Gastonia, Salisbury, and Monroe, too! 

Read More: The NC Transportation Museum in Spencer (and 3 Reasons to Go Now!)

Gianni’s Trattoria 

Address: 16 Union St S, Concord, NC

More than just your average Italian, Gianni’s Trattoria is one of the best restaurants in Concord NC. Owned by real New Yorkers, the vibe is friendly and welcoming.

Fresh and quality ingredients are what make the menu items shine, such as their Prosciutto from Parma and the Truffle oil from Perugia. 

What-a-Burger

Address: Various Locations

There are multiple What-a-Burger locations in Cabarrus County, with two great ones in Concord. By the way, this is not to be confused with the Texas-based What-a-Burger chain.

At this cash-only spot, you should grab a double What-a-Burger and don’t skip the onion rings! 

Also, in our opinion, you haven’t lived until you’ve tried a soda filled with dill pickles!

Havana Carolina Cafe & Bakery 

Address: 11 Union Street South, Suite #108, Concord, NC

Family-owned, the Havana Carolina Cafe & Bakery in downtown Concord brings a unique dining experience. This Concord restaurant is a favorite among locals and serves authentic Cuban food with family recipes.

Make sure to order a Cafe Havana or a Guava smoothie! 

44 Mills Kitchen & Tap

Address: 6189 Bayfield Pkwy, Concord, NC

Located in Afton Ridge, 44 Mills Kitchen & Tap is one of the best date night restaurants in Concord! Chef Mike Watson prepares thoughtful and locally inspired dishes, including his crave-worthy liver mush croutons!

The name is inspired by the 44 historic mills that used to thrive in this area, and the food here lives beyond that legacy. Order a cocktail, don’t skip the mini ham biscuits, and enjoy a fabulous night with extraordinary food. 

Read More: 20+ Awesome Museums in Charlotte and Nearby!

Johnny Roger’s BBQ & Burgers

Address: 3709 Concord Pkwy S, Concord, NC

There really is nothing better than a restaurant that serves both fantastic barbecue AND a moist juicy burger! Johnny Roger’s BBQ and Burgers uses an old family recipe for their BBQ seasoning and sauce, this barbecue joint serves more than North Carolina style.

Make sure to get some brisket and a cheese-stuffed burger!

Not Just Franks

Address: 72 Union St S, Concord, NC

Let’s face it. When offered the opportunity to get a damn good hot dog, we are always game! Not Just Franks serves up the best hot dogs in North Carolina right in downtown Concord.

Get the number 5 — an all-beef hot dog and a pretzel – for a heck of a deal! 

OMG Donuts 

Address: 10005 Weddington Rd Ext, Concord, NC

four donuts of various toppings from OMG Donuts

That’s right. Those donuts really are OMG!

Perfectly yeasty and filled to order, OMG Donuts is an absolute must when in Concord. The apple fritters are ginormous, and unlike most donut places, OMG does a really fantastic job at their variety while maintaining consistency in their quality.

The absolute cherry on top? They are really affordable! 

Restaurants in Kannapolis

There are also some pretty amazing restaurants in Kannapolis, a close neighbor of Concord. The three that we’ll feature are all located in the newly revamped historic downtown.

Local Patriot Roasting Co. 

Address: 139 West Ave, Kannapolis, NC

If you are searching for a coffee shop in Kannapolis, then Local Patriot Roasting Co is a must! Veteran-owned, Local Patriot is the first coffee roaster in Kannapolis and newly opened at the end of 2020. 

Grab a piping hot cup of coffee and enjoy the beautiful open layout and decor.

Eat Cakes Bakery

Address: 141 West Ave, Kannapolis, NC

a girl holding a cupcake with pink frosting from Eat Cakes Bakery

We aren’t usually dessert people, but when there is a smell so strong and inviting from the coffee shop next door—you have to investigate! Eat Cakes Bakery opened at the beginning of 2021, just like most of the shops in the historic district of Kannapolis.

Baking delicious cupcakes, brownies, scones, muffins, and more, this family-run shop is a delight! And don’t forget treats for the furry love of your life!

Eat Cakes Bakery also makes treats for pups.

Chophouse 101

Address: 101 West Ave, Kannapolis, NC

the sign in front of the entrance to Chophouse 101

Starting from humble beginnings as a salad line cook, Carlos Hernandez opened Chophouse 101 in 2020 to bring fresh farm-to-table food to Kannapolis.

You may recognize some of the flavors from his food truck, Hot Tamale, which frequented many of the area breweries. 

Read More: 20 Awesome Wineries near Charlotte (Vineyards Within 2 Hours)

Restaurants in Mount Pleasant

Before we leave Cabarrus County, we need to discuss the wonderful small town of Mount Pleasant and its lovely restaurant scene.

73 & Main

Address: 1467 N Main St, Mount Pleasant, NC

a gourmet burger with a side of steak fries and a pickle

An impressive bourbon wall greets you as you enter the speakeasy side of 73 & Main. The Mount Pleasant restaurant showcases upscale menu items at an affordable price.

Fine Filet Mignon, Prime Rib, and Seafood Mac & Cheese are great dinner choices here.

The European-inspired Cafe Lentz and Mount Pleasant’s first brewery, Old Well, are also inside 73 & Main, in case you need more reasons to support this great space!

We included Old Well in our guide to breweries in the area.

Mount Pleasant Smoke House

Address: 8335 W Franklin St, Mount Pleasant, NC

Vinegar, red slaw, and Brunswick Stew. You’re in North Carolina, baby!

Mount Pleasant Smoke House smokes pork barbecue, brisket, ribs, chicken, and more with a motto of low and slow. Add in some pimento cheese fries and fried corn on the cob, and we bet you’ll be in foodie heaven! 

While not a restaurant in Mount Pleasant, we think you should know about Southern Grace Distilleries, one of our favorite distilleries in North Carolina!

Read More: 8 Beautiful Brunswick County Beaches to Explore

Hungry for More Restaurants in Concord and Cabarrus County?

These restaurants in Concord, Kannapolis, and Mount Pleasant are just the beginning of the fun in Cabarrus County! After you’ve fueled up from a locally owned restaurant, check out more things to do in Cabarrus County.

This place is packed with fun, including the waves at Great Wolf Lodge, the races at Charlotte Motor Speedway, amazing breweries, and more. These great restaurants in Concord, Kannapolis, and Mount Pleasant are the perfect pairing with all the excitement found in this Central North Carolina county.

Have you been lucky enough to dig into any of these restaurants? We’d love to know about your experiences here and if you have any delicious places to add.

More Things to Do in Concord and Cabarrus County

1 thought on “13 of the Best Restaurants in Concord and Cabarrus County”

  1. You have got to eat at Field House restaurant in Kannapolis formerly known as Varsity. Everything on the menu is delicious! Fried flounder, burgers, chicken sandwich, etc. Generous portions and low prices! And you haven’t had breakfast until you eat at Breakfasttime, in Kannapolis and Concord!! Lunch is just as good!! Also large portions and low prices!! And I’m a Concord native!!

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