Zebulon Food Guide: 10 Must-Eat Restaurants & Street Food Stalls in Zebulon

April 15, 2018 Vivienne Hutton

Zebulon is the easternmost town in Wake County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 4,433 at the 2010 census. Zebulon is part of the Research Triangle metropolitan region. Five County Stadium, home to the Carolina Mudcats minor league baseball team, is located in the town.
Things to do in Zebulon

1. McLean's OLE Time Cafe

418 W Gannon Ave, Zebulon, NC 27597-2508 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible American Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch SGD 7 - SGD 22 +1 919-269-0125
Excellent
45%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
14%
Poor
5%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 127 reviews

McLean's OLE Time Cafe

Reviewed By HubbellGardiner - New York City, New York

We ordered lemon pepper chicken, grilled shrimp, scallops and catfish. All were excellent. The sides were worth the visit though. The butter beans were perfectly cooked and the collards were as good as you remember from childhood. The piece de resistance was the chocolate pecan pie. Decadent and delicious. I would definitely go back.
PS: the delivery of the food was slow but it was no fault of the server. The restaurant was very busy and she couldn't have been nicer.

2. Smithfield's Chicken 'N Bar-B-Q

121 Wakelon St Ste 121, Zebulon, NC 27597-2404 Takeout, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible American, Barbecue, Fast Food Lunch, Dinner +1 919-269-7009
Excellent
49%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
5%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 36 reviews

Smithfield's Chicken 'N Bar-B-Q

Reviewed By Magnus G

If you are a lover of fried chicken then welcome, I had a 8 pieces menues with fries, it was so good. Well recommended if you are not in to healthy stuff.

3. Hillbillies

1206 N Arendell Ave, Zebulon, NC 27597-8730 Takeout, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible American, Fast Food Lunch, Dinner +1 919-404-2212
Excellent
38%
Good
52%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
7%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 26 reviews

Hillbillies

Reviewed By Frank T - North Carolina

Zebulon, NC is pretty much a food, shopping and event desert. The customer service or lack thereof that exists at McLean's has taken over at its sister restaurant, Hillbillies. Why that name is probably offensive to real mountain folk who take care of each other no matter what.

Today I ordered a simple cheeseburger combo, all the way, mustard, chili, onions and slaw. The order taker (great description) looked at me and asked twice if I wanted slaw, to which I replied yes. We got our drinks and went to a table. They called the number and I picked up the food. As I bit into the cheeseburger, I immediately knew there was no slaw.

I went back up front to the counter girl who barely was able to utter “duh” and told her I ordered slaw and that there was none on my burger. She laid it down in sight in the back and just stood there with her mouth open. Someone took the burger out of sight and came back in a few minutes and said that she was putting slaw on my burger for free, but next time I needed to order it and she was not friendly with that.

Steamed, I went back to my seat, found the receipt which you can see in the photo and checked. The order and a $.29 charge said that I should have gotten slaw. When I took the ticket back up to the front, all I got was insolence and belligerence, no apology, no “can I do something to make it right” just a spewing of ignorance.

When did it become OK to let loose on the customer? You can’t make this kind of stupid up. So if you want little or no service and hold out for OK food, Hillbillies is your place. Just don’t expect much except lip.

4. Sanjose Mexican Restaurant

877 E Gannon Ave, Ste 209, Zebulon, NC 27597-9314 Seating, Waitstaff, Takeout, Wheelchair Accessible Mexican Lunch, Dinner +1 919-269-3399
Excellent
27%
Good
41%
Satisfactory
27%
Poor
5%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 18 reviews

Sanjose Mexican Restaurant

Reviewed By Stacy R - North Carolina

We eat here frequently - neither of the kids has turned on to Meixcan food yet so the fries and chicken tenders are their choice. The food is good - I love the grilled chicken burrito - and the service is generally good. Overall not bad for a small town!

5. Wang's Bistro

877 E Gannon Ave, Ste 405, Zebulon, NC 27597-9314 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible Asian, Chinese Lunch, Dinner +1 919-269-9788
Excellent
52%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
13%
Poor
9%
Terrible
4%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 22 reviews

Wang's Bistro

Reviewed By Allraceschurch W - Wendell, North Carolina

This used to be my favorite for lunch when in this area.
I wanted to write this second review because I am disappointed in the food now compared to years past. The last couple of times I ate there, I was disappointed in selection and service. Also the last time I got a small take out, I had a piece of broiled fish in my take out, and they charged me extra because they said my take out container had seafood in it.

6. Red Snapper Grill

409 W Gannon Ave, Zebulon, NC 27597-2507 Seating, Waitstaff American, Seafood Dinner +1 919-404-8298
Excellent
25%
Good
38%
Satisfactory
31%
Poor
0%
Terrible
6%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 16 reviews

Red Snapper Grill

Reviewed By Jeffrey P - Zebulon, North Carolina

The Red Snapper Grill is a nice restaurant. The ambiance is not there (it's located in a former pizza joint) but the wait staff is friendly and the food is excellent. Our first visit I swore would be our last because we had to wait so long to be served (I think they chef had to travel to the coast to catch our dinner - we waited 1 1/2 hours after ordering) but when the food did finally arrive, it was delicious. We tried a second time and it was a much better experience. We've been back several times. The food has been great each time. Service has ranged from good to superb and the price of the dinner is very reasonable.

7. Barhams Restaurant

122 N Arendell Ave, Zebulon, NC 27597-2602 Seating, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible Breakfast, Lunch +1 919-404-0589
Excellent
44%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
21%
Poor
7%
Terrible
7%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 14 reviews

Reviewed By mike_jarman2002 - Wake Forest, NC

This place looks old and run down, but they offer some good home cooking with very reasonable prices. Worth the stop if your in downtown Zebulon. Just be sure to bring cash....Credit cards are not welcome here.

8. Sunset Slush

1300 N Arendell Ave, Zebulon, NC 27597-8732 SGD 9 +1 919-422-5667
Excellent
84%
Good
0%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
16%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 6 reviews

Sunset Slush

Reviewed By Jeffrey P - Zebulon, North Carolina

Sunset Slush is a wonderful treat! The staff is super friendly and the Italian ice is addictive! On a hot summer day, what more could one ask? Don't wait for sunset - go anytime!

9. Cattails Restaurant

1501 Nc 39 Hwy, Zebulon, NC 27597-6987 Seating, Waitstaff, Reservations American, Contemporary Lunch, Dinner +1 919-861-7501
Excellent
40%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
13%
Terrible
13%
Overall Ratings

3.5 based on 23 reviews

Cattails Restaurant

Reviewed By EllenRN - Durham, NC

Cattails is located at the top, skybox level of the Five County Stadium in Zebulon. So, while you're there, you can watch the ball game (Carolina Mudcats, an AA minor league team affiliated with the Atlanta Braves). Combining fine dining with minor league baseball certainly was a big leap for someone to make, but it pays off here. The venue is nicely appointed, the staff is extremely attentive, and the whole ambiance is a winning marriage of lighthearted fun and serious attention to good food.

==>Be aware that you MUST purchase a ticket to the game in order to gain entrance to the restaurant. It can be the cheapest ticket, since you won't be sitting in that seat, but a ticket is required. <==

Our group of nine ordered many different dishes and shared them all around. The shrimp & grits were quite nice, the rib eyes were tender and beautifully seared. The Mahi Mahi was not particularly memorable.....I understand most restaurants feel they have to offer a fish option but this was very bland and I suspect was frozen, rather than fresh. The ribs were the standout dish: beautifully cooked, the meat just fell off the bone, the sauce was thick, not too spicy, and not too sweet. Very notable that most entrees came in two sizes (small/large). If only more restaurants offered a choice!

The wine list online is woefully outdated, and there were some mismatches between the wine list in the restaurant itself and what they actually had in stock. But the bar staff worked with us to find something we could drink and were really good about offering samples to our decision maker.

Desserts were variable: key lime pie was not memorable at all, but the peach cobbler and chocolate torte were better. Nothing special, though.

Prices were surprisingly reasonable. There is a kids menu. I'd say, if you're in the area and are a baseball fan, this is a great place to hang out in air-conditioned comfort, eat some yummy food, and watch the game from a fabulous vantage point. Just skip dessert in the restaurant and buy an ice cream cone at a concession on the way out!

10. Golden China

182 Wakelon St, Zebulon, NC 27597-2403 Chinese Lunch, Dinner +1 919-269-4070
Excellent
14%
Good
44%
Satisfactory
42%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

3.5 based on 7 reviews

Golden China

Reviewed By Terica M - Raleigh, North Carolina

We recently went to the strawberry farm in Zebulon and my husband wanted something quick so we stopped her. We order the sesame seed chicken/fried rice, gizzards w/ house fried rice. Nothing special, the rice however was bad. The service was fair, and the restarant average. Again nothing special.

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