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8 Best Restaurants in Panama City Beach that the Locals Love (+24 More to Try!)

Let’s take a look at the best restaurants in Panama City Beach that you just can’t miss on your trip to this tropical paradise. 

Panama city beach restaurants

Panama City Beach is nestled in Bay County, Florida. It’s famous for its white sandy beaches, crystal clear water, and laid-back vibe. In fact, Panama City Beach is well-known on an international level as having some of the best beaches in the world!

On top of this, Panama City Beach is also a haven for foodies as it has some amazing spots for local and international cuisine. Read on to find out more about the best places to eat in Panama City Beach! 

I spent a few days in Panama City Beach and had a brilliant time – can’t wait to go back…

Restaurants in Panama City Beach

Here are all the best places to eat in Panama City Beach.

pcb restaurants

1. Pineapple Willy’s 

When it comes to a restaurant on Panama City Beach, you can’t go past Pineapple Willy’s. This should definitely be your first stop on your vacation. Pineapple Willy’s is a famous local favourite and the passionate staff have been serving up fresh seafood since 1984.

What’s the secret to their longevity as one of the best restaurants in town? It has to be their love for the community and serving great food!

However, Pineapple Willy’s is so much more than a place to pick up fresh fish. They’re also well-known for their ribs, killer beach view, cocktails, and live music. They don’t accept reservations so make sure you get there early to get a table with the best view. As you can imagine, this place fills up fast. 

2. Wicked Wheel 

This is the sister restaurant of Pineapple Willy’s, but the menu and vibe are completely different! 

Even though The Wicked Wheel isn’t as close to the beach, it more than makes up for it with its hip interior, great food, and family-friendly dining experience. The restaurant offers delicious smoked wings and local craft beer on tap. If this wasn’t enough, they’ve been awarded ‘Best Fried Chicken’ in Bay County for seven years running.

restaurants pcb

As you can probably imagine, this is the type of restaurant that isn’t just for tourists. Locals in the community also love The Wicked Wheel. So this is a strong recommendation for those who want to get an authentic local experience.  

Another reason why you should head over to The Wicked Wheel is that they even have a lifestyle shop where they sell clothes and accessories that speak their passion for motorcycles and hot rods.

Gotta get that merch!

3. Local Steamer Seafood Market

A visit to Panama City Beach wouldn’t be complete without stopping at Local Steamer Seafood Market. This beloved local mainstay has made it to the top of every food list and for good reason. Menu highlights include their steamed seafood platters, world-famous tuna dip, and enormous snow crab. They’re located right across from Front Beach Road, so you can enjoy your meal right by the beach.

You can dine-in or get takeaway, and there’s no comparison when it comes to fresh, tasty, local seafood!

4. Kilwin’s

This is the perfect spot for all the sweet tooths out there!

Kilwin’s is an old-fashioned confectioners store, and this mom-and-pop shop offers an array of treats to indulge in, including chocolate, fudge, nut brittle, 32 ice cream flavours, and much more.

Panama City Beach Restaurants

For all of the health-conscious visitors, don’t worry! Kilwin’s even has a massive selection of sugar-free options. It’s also located right on the Boardwalk in front of the City Pier, so it’s the perfect place to go for a stroll while you indulge. There’s also seating outside if you’d prefer to relax while you enjoy some quality time with your loved ones. 

5. British Eatery 

One of the things that really stand out about Panama City Beach is the diversity of the food scene. You can enjoy local bites in a relaxed setting or international cuisine in elegant digs. The choice is yours! 

panama city beach restaurants

No restaurant showcases this more than British Eatery. This restaurant offers up the very best in traditional English fare. They make every dish with local and seasonal ingredients, while also adding a contemporary flair.

British Eatery serves up well-known classics such as fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, and bangers and mash. But they also have a selection of exotic burgers and non-British dishes such as a codfish sandwich and coconut shrimp basket.

If you can’t get to their brick-and-mortar restaurant in Panama City Beach, they also have a food truck. 

6. Beau’s 

For all you Southern-food lovers out there, Beau’s Restaurant in Panama City Beach is a must!

The restaurant has a mouth-watering menu that features the very best in Southern cuisine, including fried green tomatoes, pulled pork, fried chicken, grits, and mac and cheese. You name it they’ve got it!

All of the food is served on no-fuss platters that are to be expected in any reputable BBQ joint.

Beau’s also has elegant digs with whitewashed walls and contemporary furnishings. This all makes Beau’s a great spot to relax while you enjoy a memorable dining experience. It’s closed on the weekend so make sure you check it out during the week, you won’t be disappointed. 

7. Salty Sue’s 

This local institution has an extensive menu that would satisfy even the pickiest eater. Salty Sue’s has been serving the local community for over 25 years, and they obviously have a passion for customer service and great food! 

What stands out the most about Salty Sue’s is the expansive menu that includes seafood, steak, BBQ, burgers, and sandwiches. However, you just can’t go past their house specialties; Cajun-style shrimp and grits, the fried seafood platter, and shrimp Christo. 

Salty Sue’s also has live entertainment, which makes this the perfect spot to make some lasting memories while you’re visiting Panama City Beach to eat.

8. Eat at the Yard Milkshake Bar

The milkshakes at The Yard Milkshake Bar are epic. If you want some foodie pics for your Instagram, then this is the place to be. You can get cupcakes in your milkshakes, waffles peeking out of the whipped cream and all sorts of sweet treats.

Not a place for healthy eaters, but one of the best places to eat in Panama City Beach if you want to satisfy that sweet tooth.


Panama City Beach Restaurants

Panama City Beach

Each one of these Panama City Beach restaurants mentioned has three important things in common.

  • Their dedication to customer service
  • Their dedication to creating great meals with fresh and local produce
  • And their outstanding locations

So, head to Panama City Beach and make sure you try to check out all of these amazing places. Let us know if your PCB favourite has made the list.


More places to eat in Panama City Beach

So they were the BEST places to eat in Panama City Beach, but where else is there to try? Here’s a directory of some of the best Panama City Beach restaurants to work your way through on your visit.

1. Bayou on the Beach

Bayou on the Beach is one of the great places to eat in Panama City Beach and features a delicious menu. This New Orleans-style family restaurant features best in the area shrimp and grits and a fantastic specialty drink menu. Other great menu items include the oyster bar, buffalo gator, swamp cakes, cajun boudin link, and more. Kids menus are also available for the little ones at this PCB restaurant.

food in PCB

2. Oishi’s 

Don’t let the exterior deceive you, do yourself a favour and stop by Oishi’s. This delicious Thai restaurant offers a large range of menu items to satisfy every diner. Start your dining experience with the appetiser platter and make sure to try the Shrimp Pad Thai for your entree. This restaurant offers vegetarian entrees too.

3. The Shrimp Basket 

This affordable local restaurant offers amazing seafood fare at the right price. Everything on the menu at The Shrimp Basket is worth a try. Whether you are looking for seafood appetisers, soups, or all-you-can-eat specials, The Shrimp Basket is a great restaurant in Panama City Beach for seafood lovers. 

shrimp in florida

4. J. Michaels 

If you’re looking for a rustic Panama City Beach restaurant right on the water, J. Michaels is your place. This laid-back seafood restaurant is the perfect location for a meal out with friends or family. The menu itself is expansive, offering options such as seafood gumbo and surfer sandwiches. J. Michaels also offers daily specials and chalkboard specials such as fresh catfish and fish and chips. 

5. Patches Pub & Grill

Good food, great service, fantastic drinks, and live music. Live music is the main attraction at this restaurant in Panama City Beach. Patches is a great restaurant and sports bar to hang out at, and you won’t be disappointed with the menu selection here. Food options range from appetisers to wings, pizza, and more. Patches has 31 beers on tap and offers a range of signature drinks, including frozen drinks. You can’t go wrong here!

6. Saltwater Grill 

Be amazed by the 25,000-gallon saltwater aquarium at this fantastic place to eat in Panama City Beach. The Saltwater Grill offers amazing views of the tropical reef and fantastic seafood dishes to choose from like Shrimp and Grits, and Caribbean Jerk Mahi. Also known for its steaks and martinis, this upscale restaurant also offers dishes such as Steak au Poivre, Prime Rib, Creole Ribeye, and Filet Mignon. 

7. Dusty’s Oyster Bar

Located right on the Gulf of Mexico, this uniquely decorated restaurant and bar in Panama City Beach delights visitors with delicious Cajun and Creole food. Dusty’s is a local’s favourite for oysters on the half shell. Make sure to order the crab claws and fried onion rings to round out your order.

8. Schooners 

Schooners is one of the Panama City Beach restaurants overlooking the beach with great live music. This laid-back waterfront beach club is open late and offers a diverse food menu with appetisers, sandwiches, baskets, and salads. The drinks menu here is large with an abundant craft beer menu, a diverse wine menu, and a list of Schooners specialty drinks, including 24 oz. Souvenir Mugs. This is the perfect spot for an evening of fun in PCB!

9. Capt. Anderson’s 

Opened in 1953, this wonderful family-owned restaurant is known as one of the best seafood restaurants in the area, and has won many awards for its amazing food. Some of the most famous dishes include Char Grilled Jumbo Shrimp, Capt. Anderson’s ‘Famous’ Grilled Bay Shrimp, Oven Broiled Cold Water Lobster Tails, and Filet of Snapper. Capt. Anderson’s also includes a very extensive wine menu. 

PCB restaurants

10. Grand Marlin 

The Grand Marlin offers some of the freshest seafood in Panama City Beach right on the water. Visitors rave about the salmon dishes and the shrimp and grits entree. Grand Marlin also offers a brunch and dinner menu. Their drink menu includes options such as signature martinis, an extensive wine menu, bottled and draft beer at this PCB restaurant.

11. Uncle Ernie’s 

Located in a historic house, Uncle Ernie’s has long been serving seafood and house-brewed beers in this fantastic location. Your food comes with a fantastic view here and you can sit outside right on the water.  There is much to choose from on the menu here, whether you want to fish fresh from the gulf, friend seafood, or steaks and chicken. Uncle Ernie’s boasts a list of famous cocktails and draft and bottled beer.

Steak in panama city beach

12. Firefly Restaurant and Sushi Bar

Firefly is located just steps away from the beaches of Panama City Beach, Florida, and creates a unique ambiance inside for visitors with a beautiful interior. Food can be ordered dine-in or to go, with numerous choices on the menu ranging from Escargot to Tuna Sashimi Won-Tacos, Cat’s Eye Sushi, Florida Sunrise Sushi, and more. 

Takeaway restaurants in Panama City Beach

13. Local Steamers 

One of the best takeaway restaurants in Panama City Beach is Local Steamers Seafood Market. You can order your food online and pick up your food in under two hours. With some of the best reviews and ‘biggest snow crab’, this is a great option if you’re looking for a delicious steamed meal in Panama City Beach.

Breakfast PCB restaurants

14. Fatty Pattie’s 

Fatty Pattie’s may seem like a simple Southern breakfast cafe, but it’s one of the best spots to get a delicious home-style breakfast in Panama City Beach. The food here comes with giant portions and high-quality ingredients with most of your comfort food favourites on the menu like Steak & Eggs and French Toast Breakfast.

Breakfast in panama city beach

15. Dat Cajun Place Cafe

Look forward to a relaxing meal at this easygoing Cajun Cafe and snack on po’boys & oysters at Dat Cajun Place Cafe in Panama City. This cool restaurant regularly features specials and live music.  Menu items include Bayou Shrimp, Crawfish Cake, Award-Winning Chicken, Sausage Gumbo, and more. This is the perfect spot if you’re looking for something a little different in PCB.

16. Andy’s Flour Power

Andy’s Flour Power is as cool as it sounds – this cafe and bakery serve breakfast and lunch to hungry folks in Panama City Beach every day. They feature both weekday and weekend brunch menus with fantastic options such as omelettes, frittatas, French toast, and more. There are also a bunch of awesome drinks like chocolate martinis and peach bellinis at this PCB restaurant.

17. Barefoot Hide-A-Way Grill 

The Barefoot Hide-A-Way Grill is located right on the water and is in the perfect location to watch the sunset while you’re in Panama City Beach. Sit back and relax here with a drink in your hand or sample one of the many menu items, whether you’re craving a burger, fish & chips, or a combo seafood platter.

food in florida

18. Panama Pizzeria 

What is better than a local eatery with fresh pizza? You can find all that and more at Panama Pizzeria.  This local Italian Bistro boasts fresh pizza, pasta, and seafood. This is the perfect restaurant to bring a large group as everyone can find something here! There is also beer and wine available at the restaurant.

19. Shuckums 

This fun restaurant also features Karaoke and Live Entertainment every night, including music and dancing. Shuckums has a large menu of Oysters served by the dozen and several appetisers, entrees, and sandwiches to choose from if singing stirs up an appetite. The bar also offers happy hours and other weekly food specials, so make sure to check the website before you visit!

panama city beach oysters

20. Mike’s Cafe and Oyster Bar

First operating as a donut shop, and later as Mike’s Diner, Mikes has reopened as Mike’s Cafe and Oyster Bar.  At this reimagined restaurant you can order spicy tuna dip, seafood pizza, oyster po-boys, salads, or seafood baskets. Give Mikes a try and enjoy all the seafood specialties. 

21. Runaway Island 

This giant seafood restaurant sits right on the water and boasts 2 floors of dining, live entertainment, and drinks for locals and visitors. Runaway Island is the perfect spot for dinner after a long day at the beach with fantastic options like fried appetisers, fish tacos, and fun entrees.

eating in panama city beach

22. The Funky Mermaid 

The Funky Mermaid started as a super cute food truck serving up tacos, grilled cheese, and more. Right now it looks like they are going through a moment of change, so make sure to call ahead before stopping by.

23. Craft 850

This great gastropub in Panama City Beach offers vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. With a fantastic outdoor patio, guests love to spend evenings at Craft 850 with great food options and a fun drink menu that boasts dozens of beer options. This restaurant in PCB is known for good service and good food.

food in panama city beach

24. Sandbar Seafood and BBQ Joint

You can’t go wrong with this laid-back seafood eatery in Panama City Beach.  Sandbar Seafood and BBQ Joint serves up great seafood in a cool atmosphere for diners. Past visitors have raved about the crab legs, bacon-wrapped shrimp, and margaritas. Live music and other party events are common at Sandbar Seafood and BBQ Joint.


FAQ about Panama City Beach Restaurants

1. Do Panama City Beach restaurants take reservations?

Panama City Beach accommodates over 4.5 million visitors annually, so if there’s a PCB restaurant you specifically want to eat at, then you should definitely book your table in advance.

Before dining at PCB restaurants such as Saltwater Grill, Firefly, Harpoon Harry’s Beachfront, and Bella Roma Tuscan Grill book your reservation beforehand.  

2. Which Panama Beach City Beach restaurants have outdoor seating?

It would be such a waste to spend a vacation on Panama City Beach without experiencing their beach restaurants selection. There are loads of great Panama City Beach restaurants with outdoor seating, here are just a few of the best ones to choose from: Hook’d Pier Bar & Grill, The Back Porch Seafood & Oyster House, Sandbar Seafood & BBQ Joint, and Dusty’s Oyster Bar.

3. Are there seafood restaurants in Panama City Beach?

Of course! Seafood and Panama City Beach are synonymous – there’s always a seafood restaurant that you can dine in.

4. What are the food prices in Panama City Beach like?

The variety of food in Panama City Beach means all visitors, regardless of budget, can still enjoy meals at any price. There are fast food and buffets such as Chow Time Grill & Buffet to eat for cheap.

5. Where are the fast food restaurants in Panama City Beach?

There are loads of fast food restaurants in Panama City Beach. You can definitely get your fix of burgers and fries at Suvlas | Plaza New York and Antiburger, and then there are the chain fast food stores like McDonald’s and TacoBell too.

6. Where are the cheapest seafood restaurants in Panama City Beach?

Fresh seafood, delicious recipes, and inexpensive prices can be got in restaurants such as The Wharf Buffet, Local Steamer Seafood Market, Shrimp Basket Panama City Beach, and so much more.

7. Where do the locals eat in Panama City Beach?

I mean, did you read the list above?!

Among the locals’ favourite restaurants to eat at in Panama City Beach are Dee’s Hang Out, The Back Porch Seafood & Oyster House, and Local Steamer Seafood Market. Feel like a local yourself and get comfortable enjoying your food in these spots!

8. What are the best places to eat in Panama City Beach on a budget?

Some of the cheap eats spots in Panama City Beach are Finns Island Style Grub, Diego’s Burrito Factory, AutentiKa Mexican Grille, and All American Diner. It doesn’t need to be expensive to enjoy meals in Panama City Beach!

9. Is there fine dining in Panama City Beach?

Firefly and Saltwater Grill are just some of the notable restaurants in Panama City Beach that offer fine dining. It offers an unusual setting (compared to others) that looks classy with top-notch services.

Panama City Beach Restaurants

Lots of great PCB Restaurants for you to try there. Think you’re going to need a longer holiday!


Don Davies

Sunday 11th of September 2022

Everywhere I go, I always think the restaurants on the beaches are the best! For instance, before my first trip to Tybee Island, I thoroughly researched the area and searched for recommendations on pages like https://visittybee.com/list/waterfront-restaurants-tybee-island!

Sherry

Saturday 13th of August 2022

I was surprised not to see C-level posted here. Nor did I see Harpoon Harry’s. I do have a question, just got back from PCB we ate at several places but only one charged a 5% tourist fee. Our favorite places do not have this charge. Wondering?

Josh

Saturday 30th of July 2022

This is a list of tourist trap restaurants not local favorites.

Tamara

Monday 13th of June 2022

Awesome

KB

Wednesday 8th of June 2022

Sharky's on the beach is my family's favorite place in PCB