Heading to Wisconsin for a weekend away? Visit Oshkosh hosted my family for a complimentary stay, and we found the best restaurants in Oshkosh. What are your must visit destinations?
When I travel, I plan my travel around my food. When my daughter and I went to Spain, restaurants, food tours, and cooking classes were top of the list.
Is it any surprise that I do the same whether I’m headed to Beaches Resorts or Oshkosh, Wisconsin? We enjoy plenty of other activities, too, but food is my jam.
Check out my best family activities in Oshkosh to explore
Whether you’re looking for a quick bite or want a more relaxed meal, this list has you covered. Do you have a favorite not listed? Let me know.
Best Restaurants in Oshkosh, Wisconsin
Located right on the river, Becket’s offers both a modern dining room and patio seating outside for nice weather. Their claim to fame is their fresh, local ingredients making from scratch meals.
The offer a strong taplist with unique beers and ciders that pair perfectly with their offerings. Not sure what to order? Ask your server, as they’re trained to provide great recommendations.
Becket’s offers many Wisconsin favorites with a twist, as well as fun and unique dishes. Try the seared ahi tuna appetizer, which comes over a seaweed salad with a tangy sauce on the side. Or go with the Wisconsin cheese curds, big blocks of cheese lightly fried with a marinara sauce ready to dip.
On the main dish side, make sure someone picks up the mac and cheese with sausage. The creamy dish coupled with the perfect kielbasa is a filling meal that epitomizes Wisconsin.
The tuna filet is a more elegant and modern option, with the seaweed salad atop it and a potato croquette pairing nicely. While our asparagus was overcooked, the rest of the meal was perfect.
If you’re lucky, save room for dessert. We didn’t, but we did drool over the vanilla creme brulee and triple chocolate cake.
Ardy and Ed’s Drive In
If you’ve ever been to Oshkosh, I’m sure you’ve been to Ardy and Ed’s Drive In. It’s a classic, and of course it makes the list for the best restaurants in Oshkosh.
While Becket’s tends towards the modern, Ardy and Ed’s holds on to the classic. The carhops still take your order and deliver food to your car in their roller skates.
Enjoy traditional diner food, the burgers and milkshakes and fries and more. Ardy and Ed’s does it right.
They aren’t fast food. It will take more than three minutes for your food to arrive, but that’s because they make your meal to order.
Hang out in your car, and enjoy the tunes from the 50s and 60s. Their menu is enormous, which may make narrowing it down to just one item more of a challenge, but no matter what you choose, you’re in good hands.
Whether you choose a perch basket or a cheeseburger, a hot dog or grilled cheese, everything arrives piping hot and delicious. They make their root beer fresh daily, so don’t miss out. My son had it as a root beer float and still talks about it.
Their malts and shakes come in a variety of flavors and are the perfect way to end a meal. There’s no way to leave Ardy and Ed’s in anything but a good mood.
Located across the street from a public boat landing on Lake Winnebago with a park. After your carhop removes your tray, head over for a relaxing afternoon to continue your old fashioned fun.
Fox River Brewing Company
The Fox River Brewing Company reminds me of the on the lake restaurants in Minnesota I grew up enjoying after a day boating. Again, Fox River Brewing Company offers both indoor and outdoor seating, depending on the weather.
If you can head outside, do so. It has a fantastic view of the river, and yes, like home, it has slips available for boats to tie up while you enjoy your meal.
The atmosphere is all fun, with wait staff who are happy to be there and show it. Although it’s a brewing company, the restaurant remains family friendly, and we saw plenty of kids from toddlers through teens.
Another draw that puts Fox River Brewing Company on the list of best restaurants in Oshkosh? Their menu clearly labels foods that are gluten free and vegetarian. I love finding allergy aware restaurants.
I succeeded in eating cheese curds at pretty much every meal I had in Oshkosh, and the ones at Fox River Brewing Company were hands down my favorite. My daughter and I almost got a second basket, they were so good, but we managed to hold off.
My sheer love of cheese curds is the only reason we didn’t order more off the appetizer menu. I could make just appetizers my meal and be happy. Try the Bavarian pretzel or bam bam Brussels sprouts, chicken nachos or brewery wings.
The BBQ pulled pork with with white cheddar and onion tanglers was the perfect choice for me. Tangy and perfectly cooked, I didn’t manage to finish the whole thing. My daughter chose the chicken crunch salad that included a unique ale dressing that she loved – and devoured.
Their huge menu ensures there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Pair it with one of the beers they make themselves, or choose another option – I love the Ciderboys seasonal flavors, but there are just so many that help create the definition of a perfect summer.
Ground Round at the River’s Edge
Inside the Best Western on the river, Ground Round at River’s Edge offers everything from brunch through dinner. Although it is a hotel restaurant, it attracts far more than “just” hotel guests.
We visited for breakfast, and everyone left happy and full – which includes my son who ate half my breakfast! The large menu offers all the classics from omelettes to waffles and even Southern breakfasts, but also includes fun items like creme brulee French toast (which my son ordered) and a chorizo breakfast for a Mexican twist.
If you can, try the cinnamon roll. We ordered one to share, and it was amazing. The huge cinnamon roll came with gooey cream cheese frosting and was the perfect texture. As large as it was, we found it filling and best to share with the table.
I enjoyed the corned beef hash and loved them. I’m picky about my corned beef hash, but the Ground Round at the River’s Edge had them perfectly crispy with plenty of meat, just the way I like them.
Each member of my family ordered something different, another testament to the variety available. My daughter ordered the Green Eggs and Hamwich just for the name, but she loved the unique creation of scrambled eggs with spinach and herbs topped with Swiss cheese and grilled ham in a brioche roll.
The offer a gluten free menu and have options for lunch and dinner, as well. Like all good Wisconsin restaurants, they have a patio outside for those nice days, as everyone wants to enjoy the nice weather when they can.
Oshkosh Famer’s Market
I bet you weren’t expecting this one! To be honest, when we stopped by the farmer’s market in Oshkosh when we first arrived, I didn’t anticipate eating anything there, let alone adding it to my list of best restaurants in Oshokosh.
As I shared in my things to do in Oshkosh article, the farmer’s market is massive. It’s far larger than most I’ve been to in Chicago, in fact.
The market offers a ton of ready to eat food, and the lines are testament to just how good so many of them are. Choose from everything from fresh made egg rolls to tamales to Hmong dishes, made in front of you mini donuts, and more.
Unfortunately, we planned to head straight to Ardy and Ed’s right after the farmer’s market, so – hungry as we were – we had to bypass the majority of the amazing smells. We did finally succumb to a homemade bakery that had “twinkies” and shared a box.
Whether you visit the Saturday or Wednesday market, come hungry and try some of the options as a fun walking meal!