The Best Crawfish Spots In Houston

For when you’ve got a problem only mudbugs can fix.
The Best Crawfish Spots In Houston image

photo credit: Liz Silva

Ask a Houstonian what their favorite season is, and you're about as likely to hear "crawfish" as you are "spring" or "fall." Crawfish season for Texas and Louisiana is expensive this year. With fewer crawfish to go around and expected delays, you want to make sure you hit the best spots. Whether you prefer your mudbugs bathed in garlic butter or tongue-tingling Cajun spices or maybe your thing is Viet-Cajun style crawfish, here are the best places in Houston to eat them.


photo credit: Richard Casteel



$$$$Perfect For:Classic EstablishmentBig Groups
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You can’t really talk about crawfish season in Houston without mentioning Crawfish & Noodles, a Chinatown Viet-Cajun institution. Even though you can get crawfish here year-round,the best action happens between March and May. Every buttery morsel of crawfish bursts with lemongrass, ginger, and chili. Luckily for your outfit, they provide comically large plastic gloves so you can snap tails and suck heads worry free. 

The strip mall Viet-Cajun restaurant Cajun Kitchen in Chinatown serves crawfish year round, with seasonings including a rich garlic butter and a bright thai basil. Or there’s the “kitchen special” with refreshing lemons and oranges keeping your crawfish cozy in the seafood boil bag. Crawfish boils here have a two-pound minimum so show up hungry or bring a pal. This spot is laid back and casual, and it’s constantly prepared for seafood fans—and the subsequent mess they bring—with tables covered in vinyl and paper towel rolls at every table.

At The Cajun Stop, crawfish are sold by the pound and come flying out of the kitchen in piping hot plastic seafood boil bags. Sure, you can get your crawfish plain at this counter-service Cajun Creole spot in EaDo, but you should get a pound of the butter garlic varieties alongside a pineapple and watermelon soda for when the spice starts to two-step on your tongue. The Cajun Stop is largely a takeout operation, so if you dine-in you can expect staff to kindly yell from behind the counter to see if you’re enjoying your food.

At 88 Boiling Crawfish & Seafood, a low-fi seafood spot in Westchase, you can cozy up at table, tie a plastic bib around your neck, and go to town with a pound of crawfish covered in garlic butter, lemon pepper, or Cajun seasoning (or, get the 88 special, which uses all three spices). Add potato sausage and corn to your heart’s content. And if you’re in need of mudbugs on the go, there is a drive-thru window where you’ll have crawfish in the passenger seat of your car in about five minutes.

Boil House in The Heights is a crawfish machine. The tiny roadside shack churns out pound after pound of crawfish all season long, but only from Wednesday to Sunday (or until the place sells out). Get your mudbugs boiled up mild, medium, or hot, with a simple trio of add-ons: corn, potatoes, and an absolutely huge link of pork sausage. Order to stay, and crawfish shows up at your table by the bucketful, or you can brave the drive-through and get everything to-go. We prefer having our crawfish outside on the patio, the way nature intended, with a strawberry daiquiri (shot included). And don’t pass up the butter-boiled shrimp and house dipping sauce, if only to give your hands a break from shucking all those tails.

photo credit: Richard Casteel

$$$$Perfect For:Quick EatsBig GroupsKids

How do we know the Greenway-area Ragin’ Cajun serves great crawfish? They put a giant sculpture of one covered in string lights right above the front door. The hot, extra-saucy crawfish arrive by the bucketful, and regulars know to dump the critters out on a tray for easy access. Ragin’ Cajun is counter service, so you can easily order a second round or two. We suggest adding a bowl of red beans and rice and some jalapeño cornbread on the side. There’s plenty of seating inside and outside, so feel free to bring the whole family. 

Eating at Juicy Crawfish in the Third Ward means being OK with getting your hands dirty. At this Cajun-Creole spot, expect to be sucking crawfish heads in a restaurant decorated to look like the inside of a fishing trap. The “table cloths” are white construction paper ripped from a roll on the wall. The walls are also lined with messages from customers written in Sharpie. When it comes to the crawfish served here, the best way to get them is with the “Juicy Special” seasoning (a combination of the lemon pepper, garlic butter, and original flavors) and as spicy as you can stand them.

Monkey’s Tail stays busy, especially during crawfish season. From Thursday to Sunday, crawfish at this cocktail bar in Lindale Park runs for $8-$10 a pound. The original boil is already spicy, but you can get wild and order the jalapeño boil as well as add-ons like the traditional sausage, corn, potatoes, or throw in some pickled eggs. Order up a couple frozen hand grenades, grab a spot on their back patio, and make it a party.

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