Pigeon Forge offers a simple yet striking scenic beauty thanks to its picturesque hills, lush forests, and clear rivers. The beauty of nature surrounds the city, and its charm takes center stage.
Additionally, every season brings unique splendor; autumn brings colorful leaves; spring and summer are lush and vibrant; winter snow is elegant and quiet.
However, Pigeon Forge is not just about the natural charms; it’s also a heaven for food lovers. The local dining scene is for everyone and offers Southern comfort and mountain flavors. While in Pigeon Forge, you can enjoy savory meals in the midst of the Smoky Mountains.
With that said, here is a list of food you must try when in Pigeon Forge.
These round and fluffy hotcakes are made with eggs, milk, and flour, slightly thicker than crepe. Pancakes are famous, and you can find numerous types in the Pigeon Forge.
The city’s best places to enjoy pancakes are Reagan’s House of Pancakes and Flapjacks. Try the pancakes alone or with waffles, eggs, sausages, or bacon. Furthermore, you can also order a savory topping such as jam, sliced fruits, maple syrup, chocolate chips, peanut butter, and much more.
- Flavored Whiskey
When visiting Pigeon Forge, you can try flavored whiskey from the town’s distilleries. The city’s several renowned distilleries are known for their art of imbuing whiskey with exhilarating flavors.
From the warm honey-infused bourbon to the zesty cinnamon-spiced whiskey, the city’s distilleries have crafted flavored whiskey with a delightful twist. So, whether you like whiskey or are just looking for a unique tasting experience, Pigeon Forge is the right place to have the experience of a lifetime.
You can tour the famous distilleries in Pigeon Forge to taste the various flavored whiskey options. The experience will not only introduce you to diverse and delicious flavours but also to the local history of whiskey-making in the Smoky Mountains.
- Fried chicken
Fried chicken is a must-try for the authentic Pigeon Forge culinary experience. True, you can find fried food in the whole country, but what you get in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, has the next level of flavor, crust, and quality.
With a crispy outside and hot and succulent interior, every bite of the fried chicken introduces your taste buds to authentic Southern comfort food.
The secret of fried chicken’s taste is using age-old recipes passed down to generations. The marination process of Pigeon Forge’s fried chicken truly sets the stage by soaking the chicken in flavorful brine, often having secret spices. This step penetrates the flavor deep into the meat, ensuring it is tender, flavored, and juicy. Next comes the breading part, which uses a combination of flour and cornmeal, creating a delightful crunch on the exterior.
One of the finest places to try fried chicken in Pigeon Forge is Junction35 Spirits, known for serving its guests with the true Taste and flavor of the South.
Tennessee is known for various catfish farms delivering fresh stock of fish to restaurants throughout the state. Thus, if you want fresh and healthy but tasty food, try the famous catfish in Pigeon Forge.
When selecting the catfish, avoid the wild species as they give a subtle taste of murky water. On the contrary, you can choose farm-raised catfish, which typically has a mild taste, to enjoy a cleaner and more consistent flavor.
Restaurants and eateries in the city prepare the catfish following many recipes and preparations, including fried, blackened, and grilled catfish.
Blackened catfish is good if you want spicy, whereas the grilled option is better for health-conscious eaters.
Regardless of how you want your catfish to be, don’t forget to pair it with sides such as coleslaw, creamy mashed potatoes, or hushpuppies to enjoy a fulfilling meal.
BBQ You can find various BBQ options in the US. Yet, nothing compares to the true Southern-style BBQ available in Tennessee. So when in Pigeon Forge, enjoy its BBQ with the authentic smoky flavor. The standard method to make BBQ in Pigeon Forge is in an outdoor pit. You can enjoy the BBQ in a burger, sandwich, or savory sauce with sides such as corn, fried tomatoes, baked beans, etc.
When it comes to the choice of meat for BBQ, the most admired and famous is pulled pork, consisting of slow-cooked, seasoned pork shoulder, so tender that it falls apart.
The shredded pork shoulder is often served in a sandwich with a generous barbecue sauce. The best part is you can choose the sauce flavors, ranging from tangy and vinegary to sweet and smoky, depending on the recipe and your preference.
However, you can also buy a platter with various meat options, such as ribs, chicken, or brisket, and enjoy an assortment of Southern BBQ offerings.
- Fried green tomatoes
Southern dining offers a delightful array of appetizers and snacks, fried green tomatoes, symbolizing the southern appetizers, gaining popularity and acceptance far beyond the region.
Fried green tomatoes’ original recipe includes unripe, firm green tomatoes sliced into round or thick slices and later coated in cornmeal or breadcrumb mixture. Their seasoning primarily has salt, pepper, and a touch of cayenne for spiciness. The next stage involves deep frying them until their crust becomes a beautiful golden brown. The final result is a dish with the tartness of tomatoes and crunch of the breading, offering an enjoyable blend of flavors and textures.
You can enjoy the fried green tomatoes with BBQ or sauces such as a tangy remoulade or a spicy aioli, complementing their taste perfectly. Hence, fried green tomatoes’ versatility allows you to enjoy them in various ways.
- Fresh rainbow trout
Fresh rainbow trout is the specialty of Pigeon Forge and the surrounding areas; therefore, you can find it in almost every restaurant. There are various ways to enjoy fresh rainbow trout, such as with sautéed mushroom and onions, grilled with a lemon-butter sauce, or fried with cornbread marination.
Its grilled version is lighter, more refreshing, and has a subtle smoky flavor. The lemon butter sauce gives it a creamy but tangy flavor, complementing the fish beautifully. With each bite, a bright, citrusy flavor jolts your taste buds.
Beyond these options, you can enjoy the rainbow trout blackened or seasoned with a mixture of herbs and spices, creating a flavorful crust on the fish.
There is no shortage of food options, from main course to appetizers, snacks, and sides, in Pigeon Forge. So enjoy your trip to the fullest by indulging in as many local tastes and flavors as possible. You can try the authentic southern BBQ, the crunchy yet tangy fried green tomatoes, the fresh rainbow trout, and more to make your trip to Pigeon Forge a one-of-a-lifetime experience.