Kure Beach, North Carolina, is nestled between the bustling town of Carolina Beach and the serene shorelines of Fort Fisher and Zeke’s Island Reserve. Kure Beach is a charming vacation destination that offers everything from an aquarium to fishing to an oceanfront park.
When visitors are finished with their day’s worth of relaxing activities, they can find some of the best fresh seafood in North Carolina. From crab legs to clams to bbq to tacos, Kure Beach has it all and then some. So, whether you’re looking for takeout or a casual dining experience, read on for the best Kure Beach seafood restaurants.
Caribbean, Bahamian, American, Seafood, Cajun & Creole, Bar | Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan, and Gluten-Free Options
Located in the heart of Kure Beach, this Caribbean-influenced, seafood-heavy restaurant serves up island favorites like Caribbean Cobb shrimp with jumbo shrimp jerk seasoned then grilled. Alongside all of your favorite traditional seafood dishes like crab, lobster, shrimp, and shellfish, Jack Mackerel’s Island Grill also serves steak and chicken dinners. They’ve been cutting meats by hand daily since 2005 to ensure maximum freshness.
A colorful interior welcomes hungry visitors and the second-floor deck is perfect for outdoor dining. Order a Bahama Breeze from the bar at this K Avenue establishment while grubbing on some Old Bay chips, waiting for your entree. Don’t forget to ask about the daily specials!
Open daily from 11 am – 9 pm.
Local cuisine, Italian, Seafood | Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options
For the Italian food-lovers, Freddie’s Restaurant is award-winning. Voted “Best Restaurant” in 2020 by Cape Fear’s popular weekly entertainment publication, Encore Magazine Readers Poll.
This family-owned restaurant serves authentic Italian cuisine, claiming some of the best martinis and pork chops around. But, don’t forget about the seafood! Freddie’s menu features everything from crab dip and fried calamari appetizers to seafood stuffed Portobello mushrooms and lemon pepper salmon entrees.
Open Monday – Saturday, 4:30 pm – 9 pm
American, Diner, Seafood | Vegetarian Friendly
This Kure Beach eatery checks all the boxes from clam chowder to oyster burgers and platter combos served with fries, coleslaw, and hushpuppies. Featuring all the comforts you would expect from a classic diner, Kure Beach Diner is a locals’ laid-back favorite. Bright red booths and walls, an iconic Coca-Cola sign, and other Americana paraphernalia add old-school character to this beloved establishment.
American, Fast Food
This seasonal stand-alone on Fort Fisher Blvd serves up some of the simplest yet best seafood in Kure Beach. Housed in a small green hut with a painted mural of cartoon sea life in front of a sandcastle, Beach House Burgers is a spring and summer staple for this North Carolina beach town.
For a quick bite, opt for the fish sandwich and a side of fries or onion rings. Don’t skip dessert. Beach House Burgers has milkshakes and soft-serve ice cream for your sweet tooth.
American, Seafood | Vegetarian Friendly
With stellar views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Kure Beach Pier, Big Daddy’s Fantasy Island Patio and Tiki Bar is the spot to kick back, enjoy a cocktail, sample an appetizer, or dine on Calabash-style seafood. Calabash is, after all, what made Big Daddy’s famous for great seafood. If fish tacos or surf and turf is more up your alley, this historic restaurant has that, too.
Every Friday and Saturday night starting at 6:30 pm, the patio comes alive with live music from local musicians. With fresh local seafood and produce from North Carolina fishermen and farmers delivered daily, it’s understandable why Big Daddy’s restaurant would be on the list of the best Kure Beach seafood restaurants.
Open Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday, 4 pm – 9 pm
Open Friday and Saturday, 4 pm – 10 pm
Other Nearby Recommended Seafood Restaurants
Local cuisine, American, Seafood | Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten-free options
What do award-winning chowder and a festive atmosphere have in common? They can both be found at Michael’s Seafood Restaurant in Carolina Beach. The 1st place winner of the Great Chowder Cook-Off three years in a row knows their soup! Whether you’re enjoying their airy outdoor seating or indulging in a Mai Tai at the bar, Michael’s welcomes you for lunch and dinner with specials every day of the week, including 20% off steamed or raw oysters on Wednesdays.
Open daily from 11 am – 9 pm
American, Seafood, Cajun & Creole | Gluten Free Options, Vegetarian Friendly
Dubbed, “Carolina’s Best Pot,” this seafood restaurant and caterer in Carolina Beach specializes in traditional North Carolina ‘Coastal Low-Country Boils.’ With a mission to become a tradition in the minds of visitors, locals, and vacationers alike, Cape Fear Boil shows up at your home or vacation rental with all of the equipment, utensils, and ingredients. They do all of the cooking, serving, and clean-up for you and your guests, so you don’t have to! There’s also a convenient option to pick up a to-go steam pot for a smaller gathering of 2-15 people.
Open 2pm – 8pm through fall/winter
American, Seafood, Sports Bar | Gluten Free Options
This oyster bar on Lake Park Blvd. in Carolina Beach has been dishing out some of North Carolina’s freshest seafood since 2007. From crab dip to shellfish to low country boils, Shuckin’ Shack Oyster Bar has all of your heart’s seafood desires covered. With several locations, including one in Wilmington, it’s a great spot to watch your favorite sports team with family or friends and feast on some fresh seafood.
Open daily from 11am – 10pm