New Orleans Cajun Restaurants: 10Best Restaurant Reviews

New Orleans isn’t a hotbed of Cajun cuisine – you need to head out of the city into the towns of Southwestern Louisiana for that, places like Bayou Lafourche, Lafayette, New Iberia, Lake Charles and Thibodeaux. But there are some really good chefs with Cajun roots here in town, as well as fried food emporiums where you can find boudin balls and alligator sausage.  

If you’re confused about the difference between Cajun and Creole cuisine, for which New Orleans is world famous, think country, rustic fare vs. citified French-inspired gastronomy. “Cajun cuisine is rustic French country cooking, while Creole food boasts an air of sophistication, ever-evolving and heavily influenced by European cultures,” explained Tommy DiGiovanni, executive chef at Arnaud’s Restaurant, a bastion of Creole tradition. Chef Emeril Lagasse put it this way, “Cajuns use ingredients from the land, including fish, shellfish, ducks, frogs and nutria. But of course, there’s crossover, mostly seen in dishes with rice such as gumbo and jambalaya.”

At the restaurants on this list, you can savor modern Cajun fare as well as housemade sausages and pickles, fried rabbit and chicken and dishes like chicken and andouille gumbo, Cajun jambalaya, crawfish etouffee, blackened Louisiana drum and frogs legs treated to Buffalo-style basting.