100 Favorite Dishes: No. 83, Grillades and Grits at BB's Cajun Cafe

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​This year leading up to our annual Best of Houston issue, we're counting down our 100 favorite dishes in Houston. This list comprises our favorite dishes from the last year, dishes that are essential to Houston's cultural landscape and/or dishes that any visitor (or resident) should try at least once.

Last year, Robb Walsh placed the Tex-Cajun poutine from BB's Cajun Cafe on his list of 100 Favorite Dishes. And while it's hard to argue with the allure of gravy-and-cheese-covered fries, I have my own personal favorite at the late-night Montrose hangout (as well as the new one in the Heights).

Like poutine -- which is actually called the Tex-Cajun Virgin on BB's menu -- grillades and grits are difficult to come by in Houston. One of the ultimate recycled leftover dishes, it's a Cajun creation using slow-cooked cuts of beef (the grillades, pronounced "gree-yahdz") in a dark, roux-like gravy served over grits. Traditionally, this would be more of a breakfast item, repurposing dinner scraps from the night before into a morning meal by pouring them over grits.

But at BB's, you can enjoy this meal any time. Here, your dish of beef and grits is served with a light, flaky, fluffy biscuit that tastes anything but canned and a few gratings of cheese on top. I like to save the biscuit until last, to sop up every last bit of thick gravy and creamy grits left in the bowl. Notice how there are no versions of meals made with leftover grillades and grits...

The list so far:

No. 100: Dumplings at Heights Asian Cafe
No. 99: Mixta Pizza at Friends Pizzeria
No. 98: Veggie tacos from Radical Eats
No. 97: Bean pie from Conscious Cafe
No. 96: Swiss chard crepes from Giacomo's Cibo e Vino
No. 95: Eggs Mia Bella at Mia Bella
No. 94: Mulligatawny soup at the Queen Vic
No. 93: Helado de Lúcuma from Pollo Bravo
No. 92: Black bean burger from Natachee's
No. 91: Chupacabra pizza from ERA
No. 90: Roast chicken from El Norteño
No. 89: Eggs El Salvador from Brasil
No. 88: Frank the Pretzel from Eatsie Boys
No. 87: Caldo Tlalpeño from Tacos del Julio
No. 86: English pea soup at Brasserie 19
No. 85: Falafel from Zabak's
No. 84: Buttermilk-fried pork loin with fried eggs at Canopy

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Ed T.
Ed T.

I am now extremely hungry. Thank you.


Since I commented this on another post as a BB's fave 2 hours before you posted this I'll assume you took that as inspiration, ran to BB's with a camera and put this on your list :-) 

I'll look for their Campechana somewhere in the 30's.Seriously this list needs to stop. You're blowing my diet out of the water. Just retire at #83 and go out on top.


This list just keeps getting better!


I think BB's version is pretty damned good, but this actually isn't that hard to make at home. Emeril's version that calls for red wine and is served over cheese grits is a family fav (I dig any dish that calls for me to open a bottle of red wine while cooking). I like my grillades with french bread.

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

I know - that's why you always take a friend. Split a roast beef debris po-boy and a bowl of grillades and grits FTW!

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

I should hope a dish made of leftovers wouldn't be too difficult to make at home.  ;)

No, seriously, serving it over cheese grits sounds like my idea of heaven.


Damn you Shilcutt. I deserve that.

Growing up as only a suburban Cajun, I've never seen or made this dish with leftovers. I'm going to go ahead and presume that BB's doesn't use leftovers either. I guess I meant it's not hard to recreate... from scratch.

ps- one more post on BB's and the trolls are going to come out and accuse you guys of not being diverse enough :)

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