Where Do Locals Eat In Myrtle Beach, SC?

Finding local restaurants is as easy as a few internet clicks and strolling down the street. But finding the best local restaurants requires a willingness to do a little research and spend some time talking with the people who live and eat there.

There is no shortage of places to eat in and around the buzzing beach town of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. But if you don’t know the food scene you can easily end up in a big chain restaurant or even worse – a tourist trap.

It can be a challenge to find authentic local restaurants amidst the clamor of an energetic resort town. No worries, though, we did all the research, spoke to locals (the advice from chefs, bartenders, and waitstaff is some of the best you can get) and wore away some serious shoe leather to put our list together. So forget the chains and tourist traps. Read on to find where locals eat in and around Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

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Blueberry’s Grill

Blueberry’s Grill has personality, vibrant and welcoming with a waitstaff eager to rave about the food. It is a great choice for a Myrtle Beach breakfast served all day (until 3pm closing).

There’s a full diner menu of eggs, pancakes, and French toast, including a large assortment of southern accented dishes. Among the best of these is a special blackened scallop atop a lush mound of cheese stone ground grits that have been drizzled with something sweet (guessing marmalade). Also on the resplendent plate are fried green tomatoes, applewood smoked bacon, and a poached egg. Yes, nothing could be finer than the taste of Carolina in the morning.

Equally sublime is Cinnamon roll French toast, a regular menu item. The toast is a homemade cinnamon roll, egg rich and sweet. Piled atop are loads of blueberries, strawberries, and bits of fig, additionally whipped cream and powdered sugar. Syrup comes in a pitcher alongside, but in a dish this decadent, it’s an afterthought.

Housemade corned beef hash served with griddle crisped edges is also a delectable dish – a harmony of beef, onions, potatoes, and the taste of a well seasoned flat top.

Blueberry’s has two other locations: North Myrtle Beach, SC, and Wilmington, NC.

Breakfast, lunch, alcohol.

Blueberry’s Grill
7931 North Kings Highway #140
Myrtle Beach, SC 29572
(843) 945-4588
https://blueberrysgrill.com/

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Croissants Bistro and Bakery

Fresh local ingredients since 1995. Colorful walls and cute pictures. Omelets, crepes, benedicts, shrimp and grits, and other Southern staples are included on the menu. The bakery has housemade cakes, pastries, breads, macaroons, and other delicious desserts.

Pennsylvania Dutch chocolate chip pancakes served with warm syrup, butter, and bacon is a highlight. The Bananas Foster French toast (challah) with bruleed banana and rum syrup can go stride for stride with the pancakes.

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The Velvet Elvis with peanut butter, banana, candied bacon, and honey with bourbon glaze might change how you view sandwiches.

The grilled cheese BLT with Basil aioli will tease your taste buds.

Friendly staff, southern hospitality.

Breakfast, lunch, brunch, alcohol.

Croissants Bistro and Bakery
8014 North Kings Highway
Myrtle Beach, SC 29572
(843) 448-2253
https://croissants.net

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Sun City Cafe

A little hole in the wall located right off of Main Street in Myrtle Beach, Sun City Cafe is a locals’ favorite for fresh Tex-Mex cuisine. Its funky decor (there are paper flowers and ribbons hanging from the ceiling), bright turquoise walls, and eclectic collection of artwork makes you forget you are in Myrtle Beach.

They serve complimentary chips and homemade salsa and their menu of giant burritos, fish tacos, and quesadillas is written on a chalkboard on the wall. Plus their pitchers of freshly made margaritas are perfect for sharing.

Huge dishes, beautifully prepared and garnished. Vegan and vegetarian options. Laid back yet festive atmosphere.

Do your tastebuds a favor and check out Sun City Cafe. It can be easy to miss but make the effort to find it. Don’t sleep on this spot. 

Lunch, dinner, alcohol.

Sun City Cafe
801 Main Street
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
(843) 445-2992
http://suncitycafe.restaurantwebexpert.com/

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Pulaski Deli

Many diners come to Myrtle Beach looking for seafood served in large, noisy restaurants. That’s not why you come to Pulaski Deli. If you hunger for something different, like authentic Old World Polish food in a quiet unassuming setting, then put this accommodating local gem on your “places to eat” list.

Just off Kings Highway it is a small place with only a few tables but a menu that includes classic Polish cuisine as well as subs and sandwiches.

Don’t miss the kielbasa; it’s a juicy, mouthwatering sausage, cross hatched and grilled so that the edges become crisp. Try it in a long sub roll with sauerkraut and mustard or as the showstopper of a kielbasa plate. The plate includes not only the sausage, but also an earthy cabbage stew called bigos (cabbage, mushrooms, pork shoulder, spices), tart sauerkraut, rye and a pickle.

Want more? Try the sampler plate. You get a cabbage roll with ground pork and rice in a sweet tomato sauce. Some bigos. Buttered potatoes, potato and cheese pierogi, fried onions, and (of course) kielbasa. What a wide spectrum of Polish fare!

If you’re looking for Old World food and gracious friendly service, this is a local oasis in busy Myrtle Beach. Browse the well stocked market while waiting for your food. And be sure to sample one of the many Polish beers in the refrigerated cooler. 

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Lunch, dinner, beer.

Pulaski Deli
2701 North Kings Highway
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
(843) 443-6444
https://www.pulaski-deli.com/

Carolina Roadhouse

This central Myrtle Beach restaurant serves up USDA choices steaks, fork tender ribs, freshly battered seafood platters, and more. It has earned a reputation as a favorite among locals and tourists for many years running. Need proof? Check out the lengthy lines in high season

Top choice steaks are prepared Pittsburg style, a method of cooking that leaves the exterior charred and the inside juicy and flavorful.

Choose a Danish baby back or a giant BBQ beef rib. Or start with some Louisiana seafood gumbo (shrimp, oysters, Andouille sausage, rice, spicy broth). Po Boys (flounder, soft shell crabs, shrimp, oysters) are a must try.

The interior is a unique space with an open kitchen, vaulted ceilings, intimate booths, and a wrap-around bar. High restaurant for regular people. Play it safe, make a reservation. 

Lunch, dinner, alcohol.

Carolina Roadhouse
4617 North Kings Highway
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
(843) 497-9911
https://carolinaroadhouse.com/

Crabby Oddwaters

45 minutes from Myrtle Beach is a low-key spot for area folk. Well worth the drive. The town is devoid of chain restaurants and tourist attractions and is local to the core.

The restaurant is perched above a seafood market called Bill’s (which supplies the restaurant with its fresh fish).

As an appetizer we had a special of firecracker shrimp. Brittle, crusted, fried shrimp tossed with Sriracha- spiked mayo. Spicy, creamy, and bursting with the clean flavor of fresh shrimp.

Steamed bucket (the big attraction) is a low sided metal bucket, over a foot in diameter, packed with classic lowcountry boil: fresh mussels, local clams, oysters, shrimp, roasted potatoes, corn, and some exceedingly juicy Carolina sausage. Clams were bursting with juiciness. The whole concoction was steamed in a mixture of garlic, white wine, and butter.

Other bucket options include all clams, all oysters, all local blue crabs, and the Hellacious Barge, packed with snow crab, local blue crab, clams, oysters, shrimp, and mussels.

Grilled grouper was fresh and flavorful. Perfectly cooked, crisp on top, tender, flaky, and moist inside. 

Also pasta, steaks, and burgers….but the buckets are the true stars. Do yourself a favor and take the drive. 

Dinner, alcohol.

Crabby Oddwaters
310 Sunset Boulevard North
Sunset Beach, NC 28468
(910) 579-6372
https://www.crabbyoddwatersnc.com

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The Sneaky Beagle

You have probably seen the Beagle’s big brother, The Grumpy Monk, if you drive into town from US 501. The younger rendition is a bit harder to find, but those that do find their way to the Beagle are going to enjoy some elevated pub food in a relaxing, friendly environment.

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A deep taco menu grabs the eye, especially with its mix and match approach. If tortillas aren’t your thing, the stacked sandwiches, wraps, paninis, and sushi rolls give you choices galore. Some higher caloric starters or lighter salands. Massive tap list.

Thoroughly enjoyed the “Godfather” roll: salmon, cream cheese, deep fried asparagus, topped with creamy white fish, crab masago, and eel sauce.

The Carribean taco (slow jerked pork, jerk seasoning, coleslaw, and mango salsa) hits all the right notes. Think Bob Marley.

Totally dog friendly, they have their own menu. Gathering spot for local dog owners. Can’t say enough about this welcoming restaurant. 

Lunch, dinner, alcohol.

The Sneaky Beagle
5040 Carolina Forest Boulevard
Myrtle Beach, SC 29579
(843) 903-7877
https://www.sneakybeaglemyrtlebeach.com/

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Big Mike’s Soul Food

A first-time visitor to Myrtle Beach could get dizzy pondering its endless restaurant choices. The line-up goes from plain to fancy, from tourist trap to chain, to hidden gem and local. Big Mike’s is not necessarily unknown. Locals love it and support it. It’s often crowded and sometimes you have to wait. But despite its loyal crowd, it feels like an off-the-beaten-path spot that in-the-know diners like to keep to themselves.

It’s a one-of-a-kind place. A sign on the door proclaims: “Locally Owned, Locally Operated, Locally Cooked.” And you can tell!

The dining area is an eccentric multilevel area. The specials menu is a large, free-standing sign that staff bring to your table. The atmosphere is buoyant with the sound of satisfied eaters enjoying a delicious meal and not breaking the bank.

There are interesting sandwiches: fried fish, fried bologna, pork chop, a shrimp po boy, among others. Some tasty starters: collard green dip, hushpuppies, deep fried wings (hot, bbq, teriyaki), croissant beignets.

You’ll keep coming back for the crunchy crusted fried chicken, arguably the best in Myrtle Beach. Get it with a blue plate special and you can try three sides like collards, yams, mac & cheese, fried okra, rice & gravy, mashed potatoes, green beans, potato salad, and mustard greens. All blue plates come with cornbread. Sweet iced tea is the beverage (no alcohol served) And make sure you leave room for the peach cobbler. 

If you are considering here or somewhere else….just choose here. It will be good for your soul.

Lunch, dinner.

Big Mike’s Soul
504 16th Avenue North
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
(843) 712-2048
https://bigmikessoulfood.net/

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Atlas Tap House

Atlas is an inviting place to chill including 200 craft beers, 35 taps, and 56 bourbons. Hang out at the bar, watch a game, shoot pool, throw darts, or go outside to relax, play giant Jenga, or cornhole.

The food is definitely a cut above your normal bar. Pork Belly Nuggets (five spice floured and served with house Golden Carolina Sauce) is a tasty way to start. Try the creative Deconstructed hash: waffle fries, smoked brisket, caramelized onions, cheddar cheese, and real pepper Remoulade. Savor a lahvosh (thin cracker bread pizza), the Margarita (basil pesto, mozzarella, tomato, onion vinaigrette) is a winner.

Assortment of burgers and paninis (especially loved the Cuban with sweet brisket) and the Beignets are classic New Orleans. And you can order a beer to go.

Walking distance to the boardwalk. This is another reason to eat where the locals eat. 

Lunch, dinner, alcohol.

Atlas Tap House
1004 Chester Street
Myrtle Beach, SC 29777
(843) 945-9122
https://www.atlastaphouse.com/

Simply Southern Smokehouse

There is no question that Simply Southern Smokehouse is southern. Its huge buffet is a compendium of southern delights including a very local dish, chicken bog, which is a cross between a crossrole and a stew, chock full of chicken, sausage, rice, and onion. 

Of course, there is barbecue….good barbecue, pulled into glimmering soft-shred ribbons, which also includes ribbons of chunky and/or crunchy strips from the edge. Buffet-style service allows you to choose the meat you prefer. A multitude of delectable choices (a hard job, but someone has to do it) makes for difficult decisions as it is probably impossible to taste everything.

Beyond bog and barbecue are southern fried chicken, BBQ chicken, chicken and dumplings, baked spaghetti loaded with meat, pork chops, and sausages. Sides are a dictionary of Southern classics: collards, okra, rice & gravy, biscuits, cornbread, and (after 5 pm) macaroni and cheese

For dessert there is fruit cobblers, banana pudding, and (our all time favorite) sweet potato casserole.

Not a fan of buffets? This is different: a pleasant welcoming staff, well-prepared southern food, clean and bright, and a singing busboy to boot. This is comfort eating at its best. Skip at your own risk. 

Lunch, dinner.

Simply Southern Smokehouse
1913 Joe White Avenue
Myrtle Beach, SC 19577
(843) 839-1913
https://simplysouthernsmokehouse.com

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Rivertown Bistro

Out west from the beach a bit (25 minutes), the city of Conway’s revitalization efforts have taken hold. The downtown is displaying a serious rebirth after the crippling floods of 2018. Smack dab in the middle of town is a tried-and-true beacon for locals and foodies. Rivertown Bistro, off 3rd Avenue, is where contemporary meets tradition. It is chef owned with a creative menu. Everything is cooked to order using the freshest ingredients. Extensive wine list, specialty cocktails, and delicious homemade desserts.

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We recommend the spicy southern fried duck wings, a nice twist on traditional chicken wings. Lobster, shrimp, scallop au gratin is rich and indulgent. Prosciutto wrapped sea scallops are a salty, brimy, succulent delight. Classic creme brulee and key lime pie are perfect endings to your meal.

In 2008 a fire devastated the restaurant, but the owners decided to rebuild. It speaks to the closeness of the staff that of the 21 employees before the fire, 19 returned (one had passed away). This is the crown jewel of Conway and it receives tremendous local support. You’ll not be disappointed if you venture from the beach. The food and ambiance is well worth the 14 mile trek. 

Lunch, dinner, alcohol.

Rivertown Bistro
1111 3rd Avenue
Conway, SC 29626
(843) 248-3733
https://www.rivertownbistro.com

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Calabash Seafood Hut

You could spend years and years eating your way through Myrtle Beach and north along the Grand Strand to find which of the hundred or so restaurants claiming to serve Calabash-style seafood are the best. Warning: there are too many tourist traps selling just plain fried fish. Dispense with all that drudgery. Head straight to Calabash Seafood Hut in the village of Calabash, NC, a short 40 minutes from Myrtle Beach.

What is Calabash cooking? To prepare food in the Calabash style requires coating fresh shrimp, fish, oysters, clams, or crabs with a light, flavorful batter, then giving them a dip in a searing hot fryer until they are lightly golden. The crispy, nearly ethereal, crust delicately puffs and flakes, permitting the taste of the seafood to shine through with a hint of saltiness and just the right amount of “grease factor.” Pair with a basket of hush puppies and you’ll be a lifetime fan.

The menu at Calabash Seafood Hut is basic, with a handful of items for landlubbers. But the seafood hits all the right notes: tasty little shrimp, sweet scallops, creamy flounder, outstanding oysters. Your fried seafood will arrive in an eye-popping heap, freshly prepared, big potions, and affordably priced.

Locals know that the best fried seafood is not in Myrtle Beach. We found out that the locals know best. They just shake their heads at all the places in Myrtle Beach that claim to serve Calabash seafood when it’s just heavily battered fried fish. After eating at the Hut, we are totally onboard. 

Lunch, dinner.

Calabash Seafood Hut
1125 River Road
Calabash, NC 28467
(910) 579-6723
https://calabashseafoodhut.net

The restaurants on our list are places visitors may have never heard of, but trust the locals. These are places you won’t soon forget.

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