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Best Restaurants In Peoria, IL (Peoria area)


Peoria's Best Restaurants

In honor of this great nation's Independence Day, I thought we'd switch it up and do something a little different this week. So we're gonna talk about one of my favorite topics: food. 

I thought I'd do just a brief rundown of my favorite restaurants in the Peoria metropolitan area. This is just my list, no polls were taken and no other opinions garnered it's just my own list from my own extensive experience. So take this list with a grain of salt because there are many area restaurants I haven't been to and there are some I haven't been to in a really long time.  

This is just a little fun list of places I put together just to switch it up a little bit and get away from the usual financial jargon.

Tim's Picks: (the list is in no particular order) 

1. Connected 

They have a pan-seared Chilean sea bass served over a shrimp risotto which is probably my favorite. They also have an eggplant dip for your bread that is super-good. 

2. Kenny's Westside Pub

They have a corn-beef quesadilla which is great. They have Irish nachos with tots or fries (if a place has tots, I have to get tots) and cheese, bacon and green onions which are great. They also have really good tenderloin, tenderloin horseshoe with tots or the traditional hamburger horseshoe with tots. 

3. Johnny's Italian Steakhouse

Johnny's has a little Italian combination appetizer with calamari marinara, sausage bread, toasted ravioli and bruschetta. We always start out with this and sometimes this is all we get. It's plenty of tasty food.

The last time I was there I had the filet mignon for the main course and it did not disappoint. 

4. Alexander's Steakhouse 

I'm sure most people in the area know Alexander's. Here I have to go with the ribeye. They also have a great salad bar and you can't beat their grilled Texas toast or baked potatoes.  

Sidenote: bring back the soft, ice-cream like scoops of the butter. Much better than those little hard containers where the butter is always frozen and a pain to spread. 

5. Peoria Hofbrau

An old German-style restaurant and I'd say my favorite is probably the jaeger schnitzel which is lightly breaded pork chop with a mushroom sauce and it comes with some spaetzle and some creamed spinach. They also have good sausage skewers and a sausage platter that you can't go wrong with. 

6. Jonah's Seafood House and Oyster Bar 

The last few times I've gone here, we actually went to the oyster bar, not the restaurant and menus at the two are a bit different. We like date nights at the Oyster Bar. 

In researching for this list it seems as though they've changed the menu a  little bit on the restaurant side so we may have to check that side out again soon.

Anyway, my favorites here are the raw and fried oysters, clam chowder, seafood nachos and generally anything tuna or salmon related. There's a lot of great choices here.

7. Childers Eatery

I'm a big fan of a good breakfast and Childers is one of my favorites. They have one dish that's is shamelessly called "The Best Breakfast in Peoria." It consists of eggs, bacon or sausage, hash browns, and biscuits & gravy. Their biscuits and gravy are made in-house with cheddar biscuits, sausage gravy and fresh chives. They are great as a stand-alone dish. (I judge a breakfast place based on how good their biscuits and gravy are)

I also like to get the Southern Benedict which is cheddar biscuits, grilled peppers, caramelized onions, Cajun andouille, and poached eggs with sausage gravy and chives. I don't usually get the grilled peppers and caramelized onions with this dish. I love onions but I don't really care for them caramelized on something like this (personal preference). 

They also have a dish called Food Coma which is eggs, a half-pound fried pork tenderloin, sausage gravy and hash browns.  

If you're noticing a theme here of some kind of fried pork or fried something in gravy, you've picked up on my weakness.

8. The Galley at East Port

This is one of my recent favorites. They have great onion rings and really good walleye. So, if you are ever craving some fried or blackened fish, stop by The Galley. The breading is light with a great flavor. They have a pretty extensive menu and the items I've sampled have been very good.

9. Shelton's 

This is in West Peoria and has really good Philly Cheese Steak Fries. You can get anything cheesesteak related and you won't be disappointed. I can't go to Shelton's and not get something related to their Philly Cheesesteak but I have had a few bites of their pizza, tenderloins and chicken strips which all tasted great.

10. La Fiesta in Morton 

My favorite here is the Roger Special which has grilled chicken, steak and shrimp served over a bed of rice and cheese sauce. The Carnitas Dinner is also highly recommended. 

Also, any time I go to a Mexican restaurant I have to get their cheese to go with the tortilla chips instead of the salsa. (another weakness)

11. The Blacksmith's Steakhouse 

Their calamari is good and they have this bacon-wrapped salmon which is great (you can't go wrong with meat wrapped in meat, right). 

Their ribeye is also great.

Honorable Mentions: 

Jim Bistro has great steaks and burgers.

Kep's in Washington has good food. 

Oliver's in the heights has great pizza. I like the little, crumbly sausage on a thin crust which is how they do it.  

Davis Brothers is similar and also and has good pizza.

The Gastropub in Morton has good sushi (big fan).

Kelleher's Irish Pub has a great sandwich called The Hangover which consists of bacon, bangers (sausage) and cheese topped with a fried egg.


My son Cade says his current favorite is Steak 'n Shake and he recommends a milkshake to wash down a cheeseburger with fries and ketchup. Not bad.

Alright, I hope you enjoyed this brief list and don't mind me switching it up from the usual. 

Again, this is simply my own personal list but if you have any suggestions or comments feel free to shoot me an email or a comment. 

Always happy to investigate new recommendations!

Contact Tim Here