Food & Wine // 6 min Read

A Culinary Guide to Lowcountry ‘Good Eats’

Written by Palmetto Bluff

Apr 04, 2023

Discover the Flavors of Lowcountry Cuisine

Lowcountry cuisine is a term that refers to the unique blend of Southern American, African, and European culinary traditions found in the eastern coastal regions of the United States. The cuisine is known for its emphasis on fresh, local ingredients, and the use of seafood, rice, grits, and many other delicious food groups.

In this culinary guide, we’ll take a deep dive into the world of Lowcountry ‘good eats’ and highlight some of the best dishes and restaurants in the region.


Seafood is a cornerstone of Lowcountry cuisine, as the region is known for its fresh catches of shrimp, oysters, and fish. One of the most popular dishes is shrimp and grits, a simple yet mouth-watering meal made with fresh shrimp and stone-ground grits. The dish is often served with a flavorful sauce made from bacon, onion, garlic, and chicken broth. Another classic Lowcountry dish is she-crab soup, a creamy soup made with crabmeat, cream, sherry, and a unique ingredient – crab roe. The soup is traditionally served with sherry and a sprinkle of paprika on top.

Places in Bluffton to try for authentic, Lowcountry seafood:

  • The Bluffton Oyster Company – This local institution has been around since 1899 and offers fresh local oysters, clams, shrimp, and other seafood.

  • Captain Woody’s Seafood Bar – A contemporary seafood restaurant with a focus on sustainable seafood and Lowcountry-inspired dishes.

  • Old Oyster Factory – Located on the banks of the May River, this seafood restaurant offers stunning views and fresh seafood dishes like crab legs, shrimp, and scallops.

  • The Porch Southern Kitchen & Bar – This southern-style restaurant offers seafood dishes like shrimp and grits, seafood gumbo, and Lowcountry boil.


Lowcountry cuisine is also known for its barbecue, and South Carolina is home to some of the best in the country. One of the most famous styles is mustard-based barbecue sauce, which is made with yellow mustard, vinegar, sugar, and spices. If you wish to try the tangy Carolina barbecue sauce, you’ve got to visit Bluffton!

Places in Bluffton to dine on authentic, Lowcountry barbecue:

  • Bluffton BBQ – This family-owned restaurant is known for its slow-smoked barbecue, including pulled pork, ribs, and brisket.

  • One Hot Mama’s – A popular spot for barbecue and southern-style cuisine, One Hot Mama’s offers a variety of smoked meats, sauces, and sides.

  • The Smokehouse – Located in nearby Hilton Head Island, The Smokehouse is known for its barbecue buffet and all-you-can-eat specials.

  • Big Jim’s BBQ, Burgers & Pizza – This casual restaurant serves up a variety of barbecue dishes, burgers, and pizzas, as well as craft beer and cocktails.

Sides & Fixins’

In addition to seafood and barbecue, Lowcountry cuisine also features a variety of delicious side dishes. Collard greens, for example, are a staple of Southern cooking and are often served with ham hocks, bacon, or smoked turkey. Another popular side dish is Hoppin’ John, a simple dish made with black-eyed peas, rice, and bacon or ham. The dish is traditionally eaten on New Year’s Day for good luck and prosperity.


No Lowcountry meal is complete without dessert, so you must indulge some sweet treats. One of the most famous desserts in the Lowcountry is pecan pie, a rich and decadent dessert made with pecans, sugar, and butter. Although pecan pie is one of the most famous desserts in the Lowcountry, there are so many more you have to try!

Places in Bluffton for delectable, Lowcountry desserts:

  • The Cottage Cafe, Bakery, and Tea Room – This charming eatery offers a variety of homemade desserts, including pecan pie, hummingbird cake, peach cobbler, and bread pudding.

  • Farm Bluffton – This farm-to-table restaurant offers a rotating selection of seasonal desserts, such as strawberry shortcake and blueberry crisp.

  • Cahill’s Market – This gourmet market offers a variety of homemade desserts, such as banana pudding, key lime pie, and pecan bars.

  • May River Grill – This upscale restaurant offers a variety of decadent desserts, such as chocolate truffle cake, bourbon pecan pie, and crème brûlée.

Get a Taste of the Lowcountry at Palmetto Bluff

After enjoying all of the delicious food the Lowcountry has to offer, you may find yourself wanting to explore the area further. Palmetto Bluff, located in Bluffton, South Carolina, is a luxurious coastal community that offers the perfect blend of Southern charm and modern amenities. Along with fine dining, the community features beautiful homes, stunning views of the May River, and access to world-class amenities like golf courses, spas, and restaurants.

Residents of Palmetto Bluff experience Lowcountry living at its finest, with activities like fishing, kayaking, and hiking just steps away from their doorstep. The community also offers real estate tours, allowing guests to explore the different neighborhoods and home styles available in the Bluff. If you are wishing to explore the Lowcountry more, or wish to find your forever home in the heart of South Carolina, click the button below to schedule a tour! We look forward to greeting you at the Bluff!

Schedule A Tour Schedule A Tour

Culture / Day Trips from Palmetto Bluff

Story by Barry Kaufman and Photographs by Lizzy Rollins Just beyond the gates of Palmetto Bluff, at the end of that quiet stretch of trees and sunlight, a solitary strip of pavement beckons. This connective tissue, a tributary, leads off across the great Amer...

Feb 2024
palmetto bluff

Real Estate / Behind the Bluff with Broker-in-Charge W. Bryan Byrne

Bryan’s Journey to Palmetto Bluff Real Estate In this edition of Behind the Bluff, W. Bryan Byrne, the Broker-in-Charge at Palmetto Bluff Real Estate Company, discusses his two-decade journey in the community. His experience has intricately molded the authent...

Jan 2024
real estate in bluffton sc

Real Estate / Lowcountry Housing Trends & Market Updates

Real Estate in Bluffton, SC: Trends, Updates, and Insights Bluffton, South Carolina, nestled within the scenic Lowcountry, is not just a picturesque haven but also a thriving real estate market. As the demand for homes in this charming town continues to grow,...

Jan 2024

Food & Wine / Mocktails from the Palmetto Bluff Club

Rosemary Spice Mocktail Recipe Introducing Buffalos' exquisite Rosemary Spice Mocktail—a meticulously crafted blend that awakens the taste buds with a perfect harmony of bold flavors. Fresh jalapenos are muddled for a subtle spicy kick, while luscious cra...

Jan 2024

Artist in Residence / Painting Wild

Story by Sandy Lang and Photographs by Lawson Builder In early May, The Arts Initiative hosted renowned Lowcountry painter West Fraser as our esteemed Artist In Residence. Throughout his stay, residents were treated to an array of events, including a painting...

Jan 2024
palmetto buff golf course

Sporting Life / Behind the Bluff with the Palmetto Bluff 9-Hole Golf Course Team

All About the New Palmetto Bluff Golf Course Nestled in the picturesque landscape of Palmetto Bluff, a new golfing adventure is taking shape—the Crossroads 9-Hole Golf Course. To delve into the intricacies of this project, we had the opportunity to sit down w...

Dec 2023

Conservation / Palmetto Bluff Buffalo Run 2023: A Celebration of Endurance, Nature, and Community

A Recap of the 2034 Buffalo Run The Palmetto Bluff Buffalo Run celebrated its 10th anniversary on Sunday, December 11, 2023, drawing in a record-breaking crowd of over 500 runners. The event, nestled in the heart of Palmetto Bluff's 20,000 acres of natural sp...

Dec 2023
places to eat near hilton head

Food & Wine / Ask the Locals: Our Favorite Restaurants Near Hilton Head

The 10 Best Places to Eat Near Hilton Head Island Nestled on the southernmost tip of South Carolina, Hilton Head Island beckons not only with its pristine beaches but also with a culinary scene that rivals its natural beauty. The Lowcountry, known for breatht...

Dec 2023

Artist in Residence / Journey through Creativity: Palmetto Bluff's 2023 Artist in Residence Highlights

As the sun sets over the picturesque landscape of Palmetto Bluff, we are grateful for the creativity that took center stage throughout the year. The 2023 Artist in Residence program has ended, leaving behind a trail of artistic marvels and inspiring stories. F...

Dec 2023

Real Estate / The Builders Behind the Bluff

Meet the Palmetto Bluff Builders Team A home is more than just bricks and mortar; it's where cherished memories are made, and dreams come to life. At Palmetto Bluff, the Palmetto Bluff Builders team designs homes based on your vision.  Allow us to introduc...

Dec 2023
Community Villages
Palmetto Bluff Club
On The Water
The Arts Initiative
About Us