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Top 15 Popular Foods in Nashville - Chef's Deal

Top 15 Popular Foods in Nashville, Tennessee

Just like we proudly serve the food businesses of the United States and Nashville, we are also dedicated to promoting Nashville foods and food businesses that faithfully continue to serve traditional and modern recipes with great care and devotion.

Additionally, we think that the most delicious way to understand the quality of these kitchen products is to taste the foods that the restaurants in Nashville cook with this commercial kitchen equipment. Here, you will find a selection of the top 15 popular foods in Nashville, which you should try when you are in the city to have a delicious insight into the Nashville food heritage and culture.

About Nashville

Nashville is located in the northwestern part of Tennessee and also seats the Tennessee Congress as the state’s capital. It was named after Francis Nash, an American Revolutionary general, and hero. Nashville, now, is the most populous city in Tenessee and the 23rd most crowded in the whole country.

Music City, Nashville, TN - Chef's Deal

The city’s long history has witnessed the rise of music as a source of fame and pride. Music and musicians have been an inextricable part of Nashville since colonial times, and the first settlers brought their instruments and music to sing and celebrate. As of the second decade of the 20th Century, the city gained popularity as the “Music City” of the United States owing to the music show Grand Ole Opry, which broadcasted traditional and country music from” Nashville.

What is the Most Popular Food in Nashville?

Besides, Nashville has rich cuisine that reflects the features of the traditional southern cuisine enriched with locally-grown vegetables, BBQ and meat, deep fry, and seasonings. Here you can find some of the best foods in Nashville, which will help you enjoy.

1. Meat and Three

As one of the most popular foods in Nashville, Meat and Three is an iconic meal in Tennessee and all of the South with its recipe and history. Once served on the farms during lunch breaks, this Nashville food continued its importance when it entered the factory workers’ lunch boxes with an economic shift from the fields to the industry.  

 Meat and Three Nashville

As its name literally suggests, this Nashville popular food comprises meat which can be meatloaf, ham, fish, steak, pork chop, chicken, or even fish. It is garnished with three sides that may include mac and cheese, cornbread, salad, potatoes, spaghetti, or vegetables. You can enhance your joy with southern sweet tea, which can be found in almost all the best restaurants in Nashville.

2. Hot Fried Chicken

Another popular food in Nashville is the iconic Hot Fried Chicken. You can actually find fried chicken in all parts of the United States with different recipes. However, the golden-colored, crispy hot chicken originated in Nashville owing to its perfect formula featuring a hot flavor and taste of deep-frying.

Nashville hot chicken - Chef's Deal

Its main ingredients comprise chicken breasts or thighs seasoned with cayenne chili, and it is served with potatoes, green beans, or pickles. Today, you can find various versions of hot fried chicken with different hot flavors, ranging from mild to extreme. So, you can try these recipes in different restaurants and find your favorite one.

3. Barbecue

Barbecue is unquestionably among the first ranks in the food preferences of Nashville residents. Bringing the taste of fire and meat together, this popular food in Nashville is primarily known for its smoky flavor and very tender texture.

BBQ in Nashville - Chef's Deal

The meats are smoked and simmered for long hours as per the traditional cooking method to create their iconic savor and flavor. This also creates a mouthwatering fall-off-the-bone texture, which will quickly melt in your mouth with additional joy and satisfaction when you eat it with spice on it or have some mac and cheese or greens beans as sides.

4. Country Ham

Another popular food in Nashville that you must try is the country ham which is traditionally prepared by the locals of the city. Country ham is a high-quality and exquisite meat product that owes its recipe to the 5000-year-old history of food preservation.

To preserve the meat that was obtained from the pork, people started to dry the meat to stock them for more extended periods. The first colonists also adopted this method, and they dried and stored the meat without spoiling or wasting it.

This method is still in use, and the local businesses and cooks cure the ham in salt or other drying ingredients to reduce the water inside the meat up to one-third during a procedure that can last up to a year. This procedure intensifies the ham’s taste and flavor, which can be tasted with a country ham pizza in a restaurant in Nashville.

5. Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya

Descending from Creole cuisine, Jambalaya also has widespread fame in the American South. Even though the recipe of this popular food in Nashville varies depending on where you eat, it primarily has two main features: Firstly, it consists of a protein ingredient, which can be chicken or meat, and secondly, it has toasted rice.

The rice in Jambalaya is sauteed with pepper, onions, and tomatoes for a while, and later, it is seasoned with spices. Then, chicken thighs and smoked sausage are added to the mixture, giving the meal a deep and deliciously savory.

6. Grilled Pimento Mac n Cheese

Even featuring in TV shows, another taste to be tried in the city is grilled pimento mac n cheese. It has become one of the most popular foods in Nashville by combining the taste of macaroni, cheese, toasted bread, and butter.

The preparation of this popular food in Nashville starts with a buttered dough on which macaroni with pimento cheese is spread. Then, tomato slices, American cheddar, and smoked bacon, which carry acid, flavor, and protein, come to the stage. Finished with bread and grilled for about two minutes on each side, Grilled Pimento Mac n Cheese is ready to go for your pleasure.

7. Fried Catfish

You can also find tasty seafood among the most popular foods in Nashville. A catfish is a savory option and is mainly served as fried in oil. Like many other Southern foods, catfish is also prepared with lemon juice and pepper. It is also covered with flour before frying until reaching a golden color. It is best when eaten with pickles.

Nashville Fried Catfish - Chef's Deal

8. Biscuits

Prepared with baking powder rather than yeast, biscuits have a long history dating back to Colonial times. This popular food in Nashville was perfected with buttermilk as a key ingredient in the American South. It is now a pleasant addition to the most popular foods in Nashville.

You will quickly realize that biscuits are the most preferred sides in almost all Southern dishes. As a classic popular food in Nashville, biscuits are tasty options to accompany your meat and three or hot fried chicken with their excellent taste and flaky texture. You can have them in your breakfast with your omelet or with smoked sausage or country ham for your lunch. You can also enhance its taste by adding gravy or spreading some peanut butter and jelly on the biscuits.

9. Cornbread

The American South is an excellent resource of corn, and it is possible to see vast lands of corn here. So, you will not sufficiently taste Southern cuisine if you do not eat cornbread. It is served with many of the popular foods in Nashville, and it can be consumed at any part of the day, either as a side to the main course or as dessert to complete your culinary experience.

baked cornbread Nashville - Chef's Deal

10. Fried Pickles

Most of the popular foods in Nashville are served with pickles to enhance their taste with acid. However, as a southern city, Nashville also loves everything fried in oil to improve its taste and, of course, its calorie. Pickles are not an exception to this, and you should also try fried pickles.

Sliced into thin pieces, pickles are dried and coated with floor and a mixture of garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Afterward, they are fried in the hot oil until it reaches a brown, golden color and gets a crispy texture.

11. Bonuts

Doughnuts are iconic American food and can be found in almost any country in the world as an American delicacy. This concept has transformed into a hybrid taste by making doughnuts from biscuit dough. As a popular food in Nashville, bonuts are the product of this new recipe.

Biscuit dough is cut out in doughnut shape and deep-fried in peanut oil until it gets a golden color and fluffy texture. Later, it is glazed with vanilla cream, blueberry sauce, or mascarpone.

12. Roasted Cauliflower

Vegetables are also an indispensable part of Tennessee cuisine, and some popular foods in Nashville present a great taste of various veggies. Cauliflowers are marinated with flour and cream, and afterward, it is baked until it gets some brownish color at the top. The taste can be enriched with almond flour as well. Additionally, it is served with pesto sauce, feta cream, and pepper sauce.

Roasted  Cauliflower Nashville

13. Kimchi Spring Rolls

Even though Kimchi is a Korean dish that is also very popular in the United States, you can also give it a try in Nashville. As a prevalent dish in Nashville, Kimchi consists of cabbage, carrot, cucumber, collard, and cashew filling, which boasts a rich recipe of veggies.

14. Fruit Tea

Although it is not a food, fruit tea must be counted as the primary thing to be tasted when you stop by Nashville. This Southern specialty is prepared with brewed black tea, which is flavored with orange, lemon, or pineapple juice. The taste is also enriched with mint and sweetened with cane sugar. It is a perfect drink to accompany your culinary experience with the popular foods in Nashville.

Nashville Fruit Tea - Chef's Deal

15. Belle Meade Bourbon-Tennessee Whiskey

Tennessee whiskey is already a hit for whiskey lovers who are in search of the best tastes. Nashville is lucky as it has a local distillery that has produced about 30 flavors, one of which is Belle Meade Bourbon as an excellent taste to be tried along with the popular foods in Nashville.


A journey can not be “fully done” until you have tasted the traditional or unique foods of the region. Hence, when you come to see the city, you must try the top 15 Popular foods in Nashville to reach the zenith of culinary pleasure in Nashville. If you also wish to see the home of the commercial restaurant equipment that perfects the Nashville delicacies, you are always welcome in our store.

William is an experienced copywriter with a passion for crafting compelling narratives and engaging content that are tailored with SEO principles. Since joining Chef’s Deal in 2021, he has been an active part of developing high quality and informative content for the visitors and producing impactful copy that resonates with diverse audiences. With a keen eye for detail and a skill for storytelling, William excels in translating complex details into clear, comprehensible and meaningful texts that ensures higher visibility and insights. He thrives in collaborative environments, leveraging his expertise to drive brand awareness and achieve business objectives. With a proven track record of delivering results-driven content, he is dedicated to elevating brand awareness and connecting with customers on a global scale.

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