15 Unique Dishes Every Foodie Should Try in Sedona
Home to the vast red landscape that kisses the open sky, Sedona, Arizona, invites nature lovers from around the world to use its land as a natural playground. Those seeking wellness come to the area for annual yoga retreats and rediscover themselves through various available healing sessions. But did you know that Sedona is well-known for its cuisine and world-class restaurants too? Many restaurants in town boast unique signature dishes you can’t get anywhere else. Much like the core philosophy of the area, Sedona’s eateries take pride in their locally sourced ingredients and earthy menus. Join in an authentic Sedona foodie experience. Here are some of the top restaurants and their best dishes to try.
The roasted peach, caramelized onion and pancetta pizza is the star of the menu at Hideaway House—a beloved Sedona eatery overlooking the red rocks. The Italian-inspired restaurant is constantly serving up this pizza pie, but the menu has tons of other tasty dishes such as chicken pesto pomodoro and lasagna rollatini di vegetali. And our fave? The date night salad pizza! It’s a white pie made with ricotta and dates, then topped with prosciutto, lemon and arugula. Bring the kids along; there’s a separate menu only for them.
El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano
Along state Route 179 you’ll find a bustling scene at El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano. Under the yellow and orange umbrellas, diners are busy toasting prickly pear margaritas while live flamenco music plays in the background. The restaurant offers a unique menu with Mexican and Navajo flair, dubbing its dishes “Arizona-style Mexican cuisine.” The long-standing eatery has been serving the community since 1976, and locals tend to order its most popular dishes, the Navajo pizza (a unique combo of sopapilla crust with onions, bell peppers, cheese and chicken or shrimp) and the chicken fajita salad, which pairs perfectly with those margaritas. If you truly want to try something one-of-a-kind, order the chimichangas, which are made with handrolled masa (flour from hominy or corn). This is unheard of in traditional Mexican restaurants, as masa is usually used for tortillas or tamales.
Mesa Grill at Sedona Airport
Step out of your comfort zone and try something unique. Go to Mesa Grill at the Sedona Airport and have a one-of-a-kind experience to write home about. This eatery is known for having one of the best panoramic views of town and its menu is full of seasonal goods like Colorado red trout, crabcakes and escargot. Save room for the apple cherry cobbler, which is reputed to be a favorite. Thirsty? Order the signature hibiscus sun tea and kick back to enjoy the stunning view.
Red Rock Cafe
Breakfast and brunching are popular activities in Sedona thanks to the incredible red rocks that look breathtaking during sunrise. To start your day, you’ll want to head to Red Rock Cafe for an Arizona-style breakfast. You’ll see items on the menu like blue corn huevos rancheros (a foodie’s favorite) that comes with either hash browns or home fries, and the Southwest Benedict that arrives topped with green chiles to give it a kick.
Gerardo’s Italian Kitchen
Every dish is made with love at Gerardo’s Italian Kitchen. You’ll find personal touches on every plate, and those in the know say don’t skip the handmade Mama Pearl’s Florentine ravioli, which is made fresh daily, and the Sicilian-style chicken Parmigiana prepared with natural ingredients and handmade mozzarella (salivating yet?). You also can’t go wrong with any of its authentic, wood-fired pizzas.
Award-winning Elote Cafe is a favorite among locals and it is only seating by reservation so it is advised to make your reservation in advance as this place is always packed. Formerly in a hotel, the restaurant relocated to a stunning new location where guests can enjoy its trendy, upscale atmosphere and the menu full of seasonal Mexican goodies. Locals strongly suggest the Elote appetizer, which is fire-roasted corn topped with spicy mayo, chile and cojita cheese. But save some room for the grand entree—lamb adobo, which is a scrumptious braised lamb shank smothered with ancho chile sauce.
Szechuan Restaurant & Martini Bar
Escape Southwestern cuisine one night and take a journey to Asia at Szechuan Restaurant & Martini Bar where you can sip on sake or one of its cocktail concoctions with quirky names like Geisha Girl and Tokyo Mule. Order the creative and unusual walnut shrimp dish; it’s the perfect combination of earthy and oceanic flavors. Every bite is a delicious combination of nutty goodness and the briny sea. There’s nothing else quite like it.
Since 2015, The Hudson has been feeding foodies delectable American fare with a hint of Southwestern flavor. Order the barbecue braised pork tacos and you’ll be forever grateful for the rec. Another fantastic dish you can’t pass up is the classic prime rib-eye, a 20-ounce cut topped with herbed butter, which comes with a side of whipped potatoes and seasonal vegetables. While waiting for your meal to arrive, it doesn’t hurt to order chef Jeff’s famous corn chowder, a house specialty, to start things off.
Creekside American Bistro
While Creekside American Bistro showcases wonderful breakfast, lunch and dinner entrees, everyone agrees the real star of the show is the peach cobbler. It comes cradled in an enormous spoon, with whipped cream and drizzled in caramel. It should have it’s own fan page on Instagram. Healthy diners will delight at the large array of keto, paleo, gluten-free and vegan-friendly options. Request to sit on the covered outdoor deck to take in the splendid view of Sedona and enjoy one of the creations of chef Mercer Mohr, an award-winning, renowned chef around town.
Oak Creek Brewery and Grill
Sample local beer at Oak Creek Brewery and Grill in the heart of Sedona at Tlaquepaque Arts & Shopping Village. Satisfying dishes like juicy burgers and cheesy pizzas are prepared specifically to pair beautifully with beer. The brews here have fun names like Snake Charmer IPA, Seven Dwarves and Forty-Niner Golden Lager. Order a couple of rounds of the "wicked" fried pickle appetizer and you’ll instantly become the popular one in your group.
Secret Garden Café
For a more laid-back setting at Tlaquepaque, visit Secret Garden Cafe. The outdoor trellis filled with flowers is inviting enough to coax you inside and enjoy the European fare with a healthy twist. The menu boasts a slew of gluten-free and vegetarian- and vegan-friendly options like chile relleno, which comes with vegan cheese upon request. Carnivores will also be satisfied with selections like the fajita marinated steak sandwich. For something on the lighter side, order the perfectly tasty turkey salad croissant.
Golden Goose American Grill
This well-kept secret destination is a locals’ favorite. Golden Goose American Grill offers an affordable menu and repeatedly earns recognition by food and travel magazines as one of the best places to eat in town. The red rocks circling the outdoor patio make for great views of Sedona. For appetizers, order the yuca frites dipped in chipotle sauce. For your main dish, snag the crab-stuffed prawns, which will no doubt have you making a return reservation for the next night.
Vino Di Sedona
Spoil yourself with local, artisan wine or brews at Vino Di Sedona Fiine Wine & Craft Beer. There are over 900 wine selections to choose from, but don’t worry, the sommelier will gladly help you make a decision. Bring a couple of friends to do a wine tasting, and while you’re at it, order the charcuterie board that you can build yourself with exquisite gourmet choices (think black truffle salami and Chianti-infused sheep’s milk cheese). Nom nom!
Mariposa Latin Inspired Grill
Rekindle your romance at Mariposa Latin Inspired Grill, where the setting feels like you’ve walked into a kaleidoscope of color and the views are unmatched. The smell of steak wafting in the air will have you trying to sneak a peek at nearby tables to admire what you’re about to eat. One of the most popular dishes on the lineup is the pollo al rustico, a wood-roasted chicken with earthy flavors like rosemary, lemon, curry and charred corn. You won’t find anything else like it around town.
Rene at Tlaquepaque
For a romantic dinner to sip on local wine and enjoy a scrumptious seafood dish or a rack of lamb, head over to Rene at Tlaquepaque, a long-standing star in Sedona’s fine dining scene. The dimly lit atmosphere and painted portraits of well-known locals creates a dark, romantic mood. While everything on the menu is beyond delicious, order the roasted duck that’s sidled with wild rice and a unique mushroom cake. Servers are highly knowledgeable about the wine list and often make beautiful recommendations of wine pairings for the meal. To relive what will be a memorable night, purchase the restaurant’s cookbook on-site and treat yourself to a home-cooked Sedona meal every now and then.