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Tips for the Best Experience Eating in Las Vegas

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Eating in Las Vegas can be boring, or it can be the greatest food adventure you take in your life. Read this to discover ten ways to eat better and spend less on your next trip to Las Vegas.

1.    Take Advantage of Eating in Las Vegas

Eating in Las Vegas is one of my favorite things to do. The vast amounts of tourists make it a hotspot for chefs to open second locations of famous restaurants from other American Cities, only it’s much easier to get a table in Vegas. You can never run out of new places to try. Another great part about eating in Las Vegas is that most of the best restaurants are primarily located close together on the Las Vegas Strip, making it very easy to try new food.

One of my goals for every Vegas Trip is to explore and try new, and exotic dishes. The first time I had duck and lamb when I was 23, the first time I had sushi when I was 29, the first time I had a Blue Cheese Stuffed Olive in my Martini when I was 33 – all happened while eating in Las Vegas. In recent years, Lengua Tacos (beef tongue) have become my favorite, another food I tried for the very first time in Las Vegas.

Tacos El Gordo Lengua Taocs
Tacos El Gordo Lengua Tacos

2.    Where to Avoid Eating in Las Vegas

The running theme here is that there are just too many great dining options in Las Vegas. You will eat better and spend less by avoiding these places.

McCarran International Airport

Do you really want to pay the increased airport price for Quizno’s or Baja Fresh as your first or last meal in Las Vegas?

In Your Room

As for Room Service, sometimes it is necessary. I once called Room Service at 6am for Saltine Crackers and Sprite and it was the best $30 I’ve ever spent. But, unless you are dying from a hangover you should save breakfast in bed for a vacation with more limited options.

Chain Restaurants

Did you really come to Vegas to eat at the Wing House or TGI Friday’s? Although, you should eat at In-N-Out Burger if you have never tried it. More on that below.

Buffets

Even if buffets return in a post-pandemic Las Vegas, my days of dining at a buffet are over. This is coming from someone who once visited 5 buffets in a single trip, and spent over 50 hours researching the best Las Vegas buffets before my first trip. Unfortunately, buffets are no longer the value they once were. Increased prices, plus the higher risk of virus transmission and food poisoning might lead to the buffet becoming a relic of the past.


3.    Leave Your Hotel to Eat

First, there are just too many great restaurant options in Las Vegas to spend your entire trip in one hotel. Secondly, you never know what kind of experience you will have in Las Vegas just by leaving your hotel and walking to a restaurant.

Las Vegas Funny Sign Eat With Joe
You might see a funny sign like this one if you venture out of your hotel for dinner.

If you find yourself hungry and in need of a restaurant quickly, use your mobile device and locate something nearby that sounds great. The best option is to plan ahead and spend weeks reading websites and blogs trying to find a great restaurant close to your hotel.

Based on recommendations from friends, I already know I will be trying Luke’s Lobster on my next visit. Even though it is technically a chain, I still have to go because too many people recommended it for me to ignore. Although, I’m not expecting it to be better than my Lobster Rolls.


4. Try a New Restaurant

I always plan to visit at least one new restaurant on every trip. Researching and planning where to eat is a great way to spend some quality Vegas time leading up to your trip. Asian-influenced CATCH Las Vegas at ARIA was the latest and greatest new restaurant I have visited, and I can’t wait to return.

Highlights of CATCH include the Hellfire Roll with Spicy Tuna and Pear that flew off the table, we had to order another. Ordinarily, I do not eat or like rice cakes. That changed, because the Crunchy Rice Cakes might be my new favorite appetizer anywhere, ever. Brussel Sprouts are the new “hot” side dish, and every restaurant seems to have their own version. They almost always include bacon, and while CATCH is bacon-less, they add an Asian flare that resulted in the crispiest, tastiest Brussel Sprouts I’ve ever had in Las Vegas.

Unfortunately, the only picture I remembered to take was of the Hit Me Cake dessert. You can also see the Hit Me Cake video here.

On my next trip, I will be visiting Rao’s at Caesars Palace, which has been on my list of restaurants to try since they opened. I will also be heading to Downtown Las Vegas for the first time since 2006 to visit Andiamo Steakhouse.


5. Eat Great Fish, Seafood and Sushi

Las Vegas might be the only landlocked city in the World where you can still get fresh fish and seafood anytime. It’s not only fresh, it’s some of the finest fish and seafood in all of the world. As you can probably already tell, I will be going back to CATCH for fish and seafood.

When I first started visiting Las Vegas, there were only a few Sushi Restaurants. Now, Sushi has become so popular that almost every hotel in Las Vegas has a really great sushi restaurant.

Sampling of Rolls from Morimoto

My two favorite Sushi restaurants in Las Vegas are Morimoto at MGM and Nobu at Caesars Palace.

Nobu never disappoints

6.    Eat A Great Steak

Eating a steak in Las Vegas is a rite of passage for all men. My friends and I started a Saturday night Steak ritual that has expanded to over the years to a Thursday and Saturday night ritual. It is the most important part of any guy’s trip to Las Vegas, except your first trip.

Eat With Joe STK Bone-in Filet
Bone-In Filet by STK at Cosmopolitan

As a male, we are allowed to get out of control on our first trip to Vegas, especially if you are younger than 25. Every guy who has been to Vegas in a group will have a story about the first trip when someone lost all of their money in the first 24 hours or someone spent Day 3 in bed. Usually the best meal you eat on your first trip is a burger and fries. However, we are only allowed to do that once.

After that, you have to eat at least one nice meal for every trip, and most guys love steak. It is easy to find a steakhouse because there are so many great steakhouses in Las Vegas. Plan at least one great steak dinner on your next trip and I bet it becomes a tradition.

Eat With Joe Craftsteak Ribeye
Ribeye by Craftsteak at MGM Grand

7.    What is the best place for Breakfast?

Whether you are eating in Las Vegas at 7am before a Convention or searching for late night eats, The Peppermill is the place to go. If you go for breakfast, you can work off some of the calories from the gigantic portions by walking around the Casinos or the Convention Center.

Eat With Joe Eating in Las Vegas Peppermill Margherita Omelet
Margherita Omelet
Eat With Joe Eating in Las Vegas Peppermill Marco Polo Omelet
Marco Polo Omelet
Eat With Joe Eating in Las Vegas Peppermill Munch's Breakfast
Munch’s Breakfast

For many, breakfast at the Peppermill will eliminate the desire for lunch. I’ve had breakfast three straight days and eaten three different menu items, all were so good that I didn’t want to stop eating, and the portions were so huge I did not eat again until dinner. I always go with one of the Omelets or Munch’s Breakfast.


8.    What if I love Tacos and want a $10 meal?

Right on Las Vegas Blvd, halfway between the Convention Center and The Wynn are the best Tacos in Las Vegas at Tacos El Gordo. These tacos aren’t just some of the best in Las Vegas; they are some of the best in the USA.

It is less than a mile and only a 15-minute walk from the Convention Center. You can also easily walk if you are staying at Wynn or Venetian; it’s less than a mile. If you are staying further away, you can decide if you want to walk. I promise it is definitely worth taking an Uber or Lyft.

Eat With Joe Tacos El Gordo Al Pastor Spit
Al Pastor Spit at Tacos El Gordo

Even the way they make the Al Pastor Taco is impressive. They have a giant spit on display with the pork and pineapple cooking right in front of you.

The Tacos are small, I easily eat three, usually four. I’ve seen guys order six or eight tacos and clear their plate in minutes. You have to wait in different lines for different meats, so it is best to go with multiple people and stand in separate lines. One person stands in the Al Pastor Line and then another person stands in the other line and you each order enough for both of you.

Eat With Joe Tacos El Gordo Tacos
Tacos El Gordo. Lengua Tacos in the front, Al Pastor in back.

9.    What if I need Pizza at 2am?

Eat with Joe Cosmopolitan Las Vegas Secret Pizza image
There is a long line because it is worth the wait.

Don’t worry! We have all been there, especially in Vegas. If you are finishing a late night, and wondering how you are going to survive the next day, there is Secret Pizza.

Secret Pizza is down an unmarked hallway on the 3rd level of the Cosmopolitan and is open until at least 4am. It’s New York Pizza by the Slice and saves lives.                 


10. How do I visit In-N-Out Burger?

Everyone has a friend, or friends, who insist that In-N-Out Burger is the greatest food on the planet. Luckily for you, Las Vegas has several In-N-Out Burger Locations, and yes, there is now one on the Strip. However, I’ve never eaten at that location. Both times I was nearby, there was a line so long that I wasn’t willing to waste time waiting.

The best way to visit In-N-Out is to take a Rideshare to the less crowded In-N-Out Burger (4705 S Maryland Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV 89119) on your way to the airport. This solves two problems: 1) You get to eat In-N-Out Burger and 2) You don’t have to eat airport food.

Eat with Joe In-N-Out Burger Double Double Animal Style
Double Double Animal Style

Disclaimer: I’ve eaten at In-N-Out a few dozen times and I’ve ordered the same thing every time. I always get a Double, Double Animal Style. That is a double cheeseburger with their secret sauce, pickles and onions grilled into the patty. You should definitely order your Burger “Animal Style”. It’s not on the menu board, it’s on the In-N-Out Burger Not So Secret Menu. When you order your burger, you just add, “Animal Style”, Trust Me.

Do not expect the greatest food you’ve ever eaten. It is better than other Fast Food Burgers, but it is still a Fast Food Burger. If you order Animal Style, you will be much happier. I’ve only eaten one of their fries, just to try it and it was nothing special. If you are starving, skip the fries and get two burgers – and don’t forget to take pictures for Instagram.


What do you think?

Please let me know in the Comments Below if you enjoyed this article or if you have any places in Las Vegas where I should plan to eat on my next trip.

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