One of the most difficult aspects of adult life is the inevitable, dreaded question of ‘What are we going to eat tonight?’ A question that plagues couples, travelers, families, solo diners, and anyone who has literally any interest in food – which, let’s face it, is all of us.
Whether you’re local to Bradenton Beach or are staying at one of our Anna Maria Island vacation rentals, we’ve broken down the best restaurants in town to enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Most Affordable Restaurants in Bradenton Beach
Back Alley Treasures
- Address: 108 Historic, Bridge St, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM Monday through Saturday; 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM Sunday
Although it’s not a full-service restaurant, you can’t beat Back Alley Treasures for an icy cold refreshing drink alongside one of their world class homemade cinnamon rolls or donuts. It’s the perfect spot for a quick snack or smoothie for breakfast, or even a cold craft beer after work.
The smoothies are a real treat, especially on a hot summer afternoon in Florida! Try the mango-peach flavor.
- Address: 103B Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 12:00 PM to 9:00 PM Sunday through Thursday; 12:00 PM to 10:00 PM Friday and Saturday
Island Scoops is the place to go in town for a delicious sweet treat after lunch or dinner – or a mid-afternoon snack! In addition to boasting the title of ‘Florida’s best homemade ice cream,’ Island Scoops is also proud of their social conscience and community outreach.
Grab a scoop to take with you while you stroll the streets of Bradenton Beach or after you do a handful of the best things to do in the neighborhood.
Try the Kahlua Krunch or Toasted Coconut Almond Joy to sample some of their most popular flavors. Not a fan of ice cream? No problem! They also offer a wide variety of pastries such as cupcakes, pies, eclairs, cheesecakes, cookies, and more.
Mid- Range Restaurants in Bradenton Beach
- Address: 2519 Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 4:00 PM to 10:00 PM daily
Don’t let the outdated décor fool you – the food at Sharky’s is on another level! In addition to good food, Sharky’s also has live entertainment during select nights as well as happy hour with drink and appetizer specials.
In terms of what to order, you can’t go wrong with the escargots, which is one of the most popular appetizers with tourists and locals alike. For a main course, try the macadamia nut crusted red snapper with golden fig brown butter sauce – yum!
If you’re not a fan of seafood, not to worry – the prime rib will be perfect for you.
Anna Maria Oyster Bar on the Pier
- Address: 200 Bridge St, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM Sunday through Thursday; 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM Friday and Saturday
Anna Maria Oyster Bar on the Pier is one of the most popular Bradenton Beach restaurants, and for good reason. Its quaint location on the intracoastal exudes Florida charm – directly on the water with plenty of outdoor seating.
There are so many delicious menu items to choose from, it’s hard for us to narrow down which to recommend to you! However, the ultimate winners are the coconut shrimp, the grouper bites, and the lobster bisque – all of them are home runs, you won’t be disappointed.
Parking is the only aspect of Anna Maria Oyster Bar that we don’t love – keep circling around the loop and someone’s bound to pull out eventually! Even better if you find a place a few blocks away and take a leisurely stroll down Bridge Street.
Wicked Cantina Bradenton Beach
- Address: 101 7th St N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 7:30 AM to 10:00 PM daily
Craving something Mexican? We’ve got you covered! Well, the folks over at Wicked Cantina have you covered. For the best take on south-of-the-border cuisine, this is where you should head.
Wicked Cantina offers a little bit of everything, from traditional Mexican fare such as carnitas street tacos to Tex-Mex favorites including the Wicked Quesadilla. We absolutely love the grouper tacos.
Settle in, order yourself a classic marg, and enjoy a fun-filled evening at Bradenton Beach’s best kept Mexican secret. You can even sneak in here for a yummy breakfast – you can’t beat the breakfast burritos!
Bridge Street Bistro
- Address: 111 Gulf Dr S, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM Sunday through Thursday; 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM Friday and Saturday
Bridge Street Bistro is a popular haunt for locals in particular, so if you are just visiting Bradenton Beach, you know you’ve found a winner! The upstairs and outdoor dining options both offer spectacular views, and they have a casual bar setting downstairs if that’s more your style.
Popular dishes here include Scallops Oscar and the island-renowned Key Lime Pie.
Try to make your reservation during sunset and request a seat upstairs or outside. These seats tend to fill up quickly, so err on the side of caution and make your reservation in advance.
Gulf Drive Cafe & Kokonut Hut
- Address: 900 Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM daily
This is a great spot to stop in for breakfast or lunch. Breakfast is served till 1:00 PM, so even late risers still have an opportunity to indulge in some yummy egg dishes or seafood quiche.
As it’s on the beach, you can expect the menu to be priced accordingly, due in part to the epic ambiance!
For lunch, try the Reuben with homemade Thousand Island dressing – it’s to-die-for!
Kokonut Hut is the sister bar to Gulf Drive Cafe, and makes the perfect place to enjoy an afternoon or evening cocktail with your toes in the sand overlooking the beautiful views of the Gulf of Mexico.
- Address: 1701 Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 11:00 AM to 8:00 PM Monday through Saturday; Closed Sundays
This is one of the best places in town to grab a delicious sandwich for lunch. Though it’s not your typical deli, you will find loads of creativity and innovation. We love ‘The Islander’ which is a smoked chicken and ham sandwich piled high with fresh pineapple, pepper jack cheese, and teriyaki mayo.
Another popular favorite is the Korean Beef sandwich with shaved beef, Korean BBQ, and ginger lime slaw. Their menu is rather small, but they’ve perfected the sandwiches that they offer. For a side, don’t miss out on the fried brussels!
They have gluten free options if you are celiac or simply prefer to avoid gluten, which is great for a small sandwich shop, as well as a vegetarian/vegan sandwich for all you herbivores.
The industrial ambiance of Smoqehouse is a nice reprieve from the normal tiki-inspired decor that you find around the island – perfect for when you’ve had enough sand and sun.
Tahini Beach Cafe
- Address: 103 Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM Daily
If you’re looking for something a little different than the standard restaurant menu you’ll find on Anna Maria Island, try Tahini Beach Cafe. This Jordanian family-owned and operated restaurant offers some delicious Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine, which can be a nice change from your typical tacos and burgers you’ll find everywhere else on the island.
The best part? Breakfast is served all day – well, until they close in the afternoons! Definitely try the Shakshuka and the Turkish Avocado Toast.
The Bridge Tender Inn
- Address: 135 Bridge St, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 11:30 AM to 12:00 AM Sunday through Thursday; 11:30 AM to 1:00 AM Friday and Saturday
The Bridge Tender Inn is no stranger to hospitality – they’ve been in business since 1989! Clearly they’re doing something right in the eyes of their loyal patrons! They’re best known for their epic location, tiki bar, and live music nights.
This place gets jam-packed, but they don’t accept reservations. Your best bet is to come during non-peak hours for lunch or dinner. Try the fried oyster appetizer, fish tacos, or virtually any dish with fresh seafood.
They also offer a regular schedule of live music and Bingo nights, giving this Bradenton Beach restaurant a fun-filled ambiance perfect for a weekend night out.
Traveling with your furry friends? The Bridge Tender Inn is dog friendly! They even have a few menu items specifically made for dogs.
Beach House Waterfront Restaurant
- Address: 200 Gulf Dr N, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 11:30 AM to 10:00 PM Daily
Beach House Waterfront Restaurant is a great option for virtually anyone seeking a nice dining atmosphere and quality food and service. With three dining areas, you can choose your mealtime experience. The dining room inside offers air conditioning, which is a great option for those who haven’t yet acclimated to the searing Florida heat. You also have an outdoor patio and toes-in-the-sand areas to enjoy.
The house smoked fish dip is great for a starter. For entrees, we love the seafood gumbo or the fried shrimp. There are plenty of non-seafood options available as well.
The outdoor patio opens right up onto the shore, so if you’re dining with kids, they’ll have a fun place to play (in addition to the sweeping views the location offers). Beach House Waterfront Restaurant is one of the best places in Bradenton Beach to enjoy sunset dining if you secure a table on the patio.
Complimentary valet parking is another perk of dining here, since parking in the area is a bit scarce.
Island Time Bar & Grill
- Address: 111 Gulf Dr S, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM Daily
For upscale bar food in a relaxed setting, look no further than Island Time Bar and Grill. With live music, happy hour specials, great food, and a fun, young crowd, Island Time lives up to its name.
The Bang Bang Shrimp Tacos are among the most popular (though, if you’re looking for something with a lot of heat, be sure to order them extra spicy). Another crowd favorite is the Grouper Sandwich.
Be forewarned, however, that if you are coming here at night, the bar can get very loud with the combination of music and patrons. If you’re looking for a quiet place to relax, we’d advise you look elsewhere.
High End Restaurants in Bradenton Beach
Bamboo Island Bar
- Address: 119 Bridge St, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 4:00 PM to 9:30 PM Sunday through Thursday; 4:00 PM to 11:00 PM Friday and Saturday
Don’t let the name fool you – Bamboo Island Bar has more than just delicious cocktails. Though the menu is relatively small, we usually consider that a good indicator that the kitchen knows how to execute the offered dishes perfectly – and this place is no exception.
This hidden gem on the island is even unknown to some locals, so be sure to try it before word gets out and you can’t get a table. The food is unique and artfully presented, without skimping on flavor.
If you’re the carnivorous type, be sure to try the Steak Platter. For locally caught seafood, you can’t go wrong with the Grouper Medallion with Shrimp and Capers.
In terms of drinks, Bamboo Island Bar boasts the ‘best mojitos’ on AMI – and they aren’t wrong. You’d be remiss to skip out on this refreshing libation!
Blue Marlin Seafood Restaurant
- Address: 121 Bridge St, Bradenton Beach
- Hours: 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM Monday through Saturday; Closed Sundays
If you are in Bradenton Beach and looking for a restaurant for a special occasion or date night, look no further than Blue Marlin Seafood Restaurant. The Pecan Crusted Grouper is one of the most popular dishes, alongside the crab cake appetizer.
Reservations are required on Friday and Saturday nights and strongly recommended all other nights. This place fills up fast, particularly in the throes of the busy tourist season.
The boho beachy vibes of Blue Marlin’s outdoor seating area is the perfect option for diners who want five-star service and food quality without the pretentious atmosphere that comes along with many fine dining establishments.
Enjoy the Best Bradenton Beach Restaurants
While you’ll already get the sand, surf, and sea on your vacation to beautiful Anna Maria Island, by staying in Bradenton Beach, you’re also guaranteed plenty of great places to eat. Your only mission on this beach trip is to relax, indulge, and relax again!