Ryan and I love finding great food. We laugh because sometimes we plan around when and where we want to eat. Please tell me that we are not the only ones that do this!?! We love a delicious meal! We have several food recommendations for traveling through central Iowa. Check these out and let us know in the comments below what you think or if we missed any that should be on this list.
Best Fast Food Unique to Iowa (Mostly)
Tasty Tacos – Order a flour taco. I prefer the original and Ryan prefers the steak. I promise you will not be disappointed. The enchiladas are also delicious. The cheese is my favorite but the chicken enchilada is also great. The boys love the rice and I always order a side of flour nachos. Be prepared to stand in line if you go around lunch or dinner time, however, as a quicker option, you are able to call ahead with an order to pick up. You are able to purchase the Tasty Taco seasoning and salsa to take home. I have to say that I have mastered making a pretty good copycat flour taco at home.
B-Bops – If you are craving a juicy, greasy burger, this is your place. B-Bops is a fun 1950’s theme fast food restaurant with a great burger and fries. There are a few B-Bops scattered throughout the Des Moines area so make sure to swing through and grab a sandwich and fries.
Casey’s – A gas station / convenience store may not be the first place you consider for food recommendations. However, you won’t be disappointed with a taco pizza from Casey’s. They are yummy! Hamburger, cheese, sauce topped with lettuce, tomatoes and dorito chips. Add some taco sauce and its a delicious combination!
Sit Down Lunch
South Union – If you have a soft spot for delicious bread, you cannot miss South Union. This sandwich shop is only open for lunch and is located in downtown Des Moines. You have a choice of hot or cold sandwiches or a salad. Ryan’s favorite it the Sarah’s Revenge while I like to order the Hot Cheese Melt. Don’t skip a bag of their freshly baked bread. You are able to get a small cup of olive oil and parmesan for dipping.
Manhattan Deli – When I was in high school (let’s not count the number of years that has been), this was one of my favorite stops for lunch. I have continued to love eating lunch here while visiting Iowa and not much has changed. Last time I visited, they did not accept credit cards. It is a cash or check place, family owned and operated. The deli sandwiches are top notch along with a side of pasta salad and a brownie.
Big Steer – If you enjoy prime rib, head to Altoona. Their house salad dressing is a creamy parmesan and is good enough that you may decide to purchase a bottle to take home. Ryan always has a hard time choosing between the prime rib and the steak de burgo. I don’t think you can go wrong either way but I also love Big Steer’s scallops.
El Aguila Real – I have a soft spot for Mexican food as my mom, sister and I love chips and salsa. Most of the time, I am full prior to the main course arriving at our table, however, I still never seem to learn to save room. El Aguila Real is one of our favorite places for Mexican food in the Des Moines area.
Ohana’s Steak House – For a fun and entertaining dinner, check out Ohana’s Steak House. This is a hibachi restaurant in which the chefs cook the food on the table in front of you. If you like seafood, the shrimp and scallops is unforgettable. I have never found a sauce for scallops that comes close to the tastiness of Ohana’s. Of course, the chicken and steak are also delicious options.
Fleming’s Steak House – Fleming’s is a top notch steak house. The service nor the food could not be any better. You will pay for both but as a result, you are not going to find a nicer restaurant. The steaks melt in your mouth and the sides are divine. You will be treated to a classy evening at Fleming’s.
Check out all the fun we had in Iowa in our Transcend 29TBS, including the food in this video.