The holidays can be a great time to visit the Great Smoky Mountains.
However, it’s also a busy time to visit.
So busy, in fact, that finding a spot to sit down for a nice meal for one of your favorite holidays can feel like quite the chore.
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What restaurants are open on Thanksgiving in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge?
If you’re trying to find a place to eat on Thanksgiving Day, it can be hard to know where to start.
That’s why we contacted several of the popular area restaurants to get the scoop on what’s open on Thanksgiving Day.
While we do our best to maintain the most accurate list possible, we always recommend confirming the restaurant’s hours before making plans. While we either confirmed this list by contacting the restaurant or checking directly on the restaurant’s website, things tend to change with little to no notice in the Smokies.
Also, we cannot understate the popularity of these restaurants during the holiday season. Reservations are hard to come by, and Thanksgiving hours tend to vary depending on the demand.
Arrive as early as possible. Wait times can be as great as two hours or more. With that in mind, here are popular restaurants that are open in Gatlinburg and the surrounding areas on Thanksgiving Day:
Read Also: Gatlinburg Thanksgiving: 11 things to do, suggestions from a local
1. Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant and Applewood Farmhouse Grill (Sevierville)
The Applewood Farmhouse Grill and Applewood Restaurant serve Southern-style favorites and are located at The Apple Barn in Sevierville.
While they are open on Thanksgiving Day, at the time of this writing, they are both fully booked.
However, you can try to call for take-out orders between 8 am – 5 pm at (865) 429-5700, ext 113.
2. Alamo Steakhouse
Both Alamo locations, in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 4 pm-close.
They are not accepting reservations or call ahead seating.
3. Bennett’s Bar-B-Que & Big Daddy’s Pizzeria
Bennett’s Bar-B-Que and Big Daddy’s Pizzeria each have stand-alone locations in Pigeon Forge as well as a joint location in Gatlinburg.
We contacted the Gatlinburg venue and were told that they would be open from 11-8 on Thanksgiving Day.
They do not take reservations, but you may try to call ahead for seating.
4. Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. (Gatlinburg)
Bubba Gump captures the magic that made “Forrest Gump” a classic and offers American cuisine (and a lot of shrimp).
They will have regular hours on Thanksgiving Day.
Calhoun’s is known for their excellent BBQ and has locations in both Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge.
Both will be open from 11 am to 10 pm on Thanksgiving Day.
6. Chesapeake’s Seafood (Gatlinburg)
Chesapeake’s Seafood House serves fresh locally sourced seafood in a romantic setting with a view of the Pigeon River.
On Thanksgiving Day, Chesapeake’s will open its doors at 1 pm. You can make a reservation ahead of time (which we highly recommend) or by visiting their website.
Chesapeake’s is located in downtown Gatlinburg. Limited spots are available at the time of this writing.
7. Chicken Guy (Gatlinburg)
Chicken Guy is a new fast-casual style restaurant that just opened last year in downtown Gatlinburg.
They serve a variety of fried chicken dishes including tenders, salads and sandwiches. Chicken Guy will be open during normal business hours on Thanksgiving Day. They do not take reservations or offer call-ahead seating.
8. Cracker Barrel
Cracker Barrel has locations across the nation and will be open on Thanksgiving Day.
Locations in the Smokies include: Sevierville, Kodak and two locations in Pigeon Forge.
Cracker Barrel does not take reservations.
9. Denny’s (Pigeon Forge)
A reliable staple in almost every town, Denny’s Diner will be open on Thanksgiving Day in Pigeon Forge.
Denny’s does not take reservations or offer call-ahead seating.
10. Downtown Flavortown (Pigeon Forge)
Downtown Flavortown is a new entertainment and restaurant venue in Pigeon Forge.
Flavortown will be offering a Thanksgiving buffet from 11-7 and they are taking reservations. Call (865) 505-0750 to book your spot.
11. Fannie Farkle’s
Fannie Farkle’s will be open during its regular hours on Thanksgiving Day.
It’s not traditional, as they are mostly known for delicious corndogs, but it is delicious.
12. FlapJack’s Pancake Cabin
FlapJack’s has multiple locations all over the Smokies and will be serving breakfast on Thanksgiving Day.
And it may be important to note that FlapJacks, like many other breakfast spots in the Smokies, closes around lunchtime every day.
13. Fort Worth Texas Kitchen (Pigeon Forge)
Fort Worth Texas Kitchen serves traditional TexMex and will be open on Thanksgiving Day.
However, the restaurant will be closing early at 5 pm.
They do not take reservations, but you can try to call ahead for seating.
14. Holston’s Kitchen (Sevierville)
Located in Sevierville, Holston’s serves a variety of American favorites including meat, seafood, pasta and TexMex.
They will be open on Thanksgiving Day with a traditional Thanksgiving menu. They do not take reservations, but they have an online wait system.
IHOP is a popular chain known for its pancakes, breakfast and other American staples.
The Smokies location we called said they would be open from 6 am to 2 pm.
16. Joe’s Crab Shack (Sevierville)
Joe’s Crab Shack is another popular chain and will be open from 1-7 pm on Thanksgiving.
We were told you can now make reservations.
17. JT Hannah’s Kitchen (Pigeon Forge)
JT Hannah’s serves American classics like chicken, pasta, burgers, salads and more.
They will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 11 am to 9 pm but are not offering reservations.
JT Hannah’s is located in Pigeon Forge.
18. Loco Burro Fresh Mex Cantina (Gatlinburg)
Offering TexMex-style cuisine, The Loco Burro is located on the strip in downtown Gatlinburg.
On warm days, they even offer roof-top dining with a view. Loco Burro will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 11 am to 10 pm but is not accepting call ahead seating or reservations.
19. Mama’s Chicken Kitchen and J.O.E. and Pop’s Sub Shoppe (Gatlinburg)
Here’s another great combo restaurant that is sure to please the entire family – Mama’s Chicken Kitchen and J.O.E. and Pop’s Sub Shoppe in Gatlinburg.
J.O.E. and Pop’s serves handcrafted sub sandwiches and Mama’s serves a variety of chicken dishes including tenders and chicken and dumplings.
These two restaurants will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 3 pm-close. They are not accepting reservations or call-ahead seating but they do offer online ordering.
20. Mama’s Farmhouse
Mama’s Farmhouse features traditional Southern cuisine including fried chicken, turkey, biscuits and meatloaf.
It’s a good spot to go to if you’re looking for a traditional Thanksgiving feast.
They are not taking reservations at the time of this writing.
21. Mel’s Diner (Pigeon Forge)
Mel’s Diner serves traditional American diner-style food in a casual environment.
This restaurant will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 7 am to midnight and is located in Pigeon Forge. Like so many other area restaurants, Mel’s will also be seating guests on a first come, first served basis.
22. No Way Jose’s (Gatlinburg)
A Mexican restaurant chain, No Way Jose’s Cantina is located in downtown Gatlinburg.
They will be open on Thanksgiving Day but do not accept reservations or offer call-ahead seating.
23. Old Mill Pottery House and Old Mill Restaurant (Pigeon Forge)
Old Mill Restaurant and Pottery House Cafe, both located in Old Mill Square, will be offering a traditional feast for Thanksgiving Day.
Adults can dine for $29.99, and children under 12 can eat for $12.99.
The menu includes corn chowder, corn fritters, roasted turkey with cornbread dressing, giblet gravy, cranberry sauce, slow-roasted beef, sugar-cured ham, mashed potatoes, green beans, baked rolls and apple pie.
The restaurants will be open from 10:30 am to 8:30 pm.
Reservations are not available. Arrive early for best results.
24. Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen (Pigeon Forge)
Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen is located at The Island in Pigeon Forge and also offers traditional Southern favorites.
This restaurant will be open on Thanksgiving from 10 am to 8 pm but they do not accept reservations or offer call-ahead seating.
25. Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant (Pigeon Forge)
Puckett’s is a local chain, with its flagship restaurant being located about three hours down the road in Franklin, Tenn.
This restaurant specializes in BBQ and other popular American staples. Puckett’s will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 11 am-4 pm and serving a family-style feast. You can make reservations online.
26. Reagan’s House of Pancakes (Pigeon Forge)
Both locations for Reagan’s House of Pancakes in Pigeon Forge will be open for breakfast on Thanksgiving Day.
This restaurant closes around lunchtime daily.
Shoney’s has multiple locations in the Smokies, including Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.
The restaurant will be open during regular hours on Thanksgiving Day.
28. Smith & Son Corner Kitchen
Smith & Son offers typical American fare including chicken, salads, pasta, burgers and more.
Entrees offer a wide range of delicious meals like meatloaf, slow cooked ribs and country fried steak.
Perfect for a Thanksgiving feast. The restaurant will be open on Thanksgiving Day.
29. Smoky Mountain Brewery
Both Smoky Mountain Brewery locations (Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge) will be open on Thanksgiving.
The breweries are known for their American cuisine, craft beers and live music. They are not accepting reservations.
30. Smoky Mountain Pancake House (Pigeon Forge)
Smoky Mountain Pancake House will be open on Thanksgiving.
But like other breakfast spots in the Smokies, the Pancake House closes daily around lunchtime.
31. Smoky’s Pancake Cabin (Pigeon Forge)
Smoky’s Pancake Cabin will be open for breakfast on Thanksgiving in Pigeon Forge.
They are not accepting reservations.
32. The Melting Pot (Gatlinburg)
The Melting Pot is a popular higher-end nationally recognized chain known for its fondue style dining.
This holiday season, the Gatlinburg location will be open on Thanksgiving Day and is currently taking reservations on Open Table.
The restaurant will be open from 4-9 pm.
33. The Park Grill (Gatlinburg)
The Park Grill, located in downtown Gatlinburg, serves traditional American cuisine and is known for its steaks, BBQ and grilled seafood.
They are open on Thanksgiving Day. While they normally accept reservations, their online booking system currently appears full.
34. The Peddler (Gatlinburg)
The Peddler in downtown Gatlinburg is the sister restaurant of The Park Grill (and the OG). Like their sister restaurant, they are most well-known for their steaks.
They are open on Thanksgiving Day. Similar to their sister restaurant The Park Grill, they normally accept reservations, but their online booking system currently appears full.
35. Three Jimmy’s Good Time Eatery (Gatlinburg)
Three Jimmy’s is located near the Arts and Crafts Community in Gatlinburg and serves ribs, steaks, wings and other American classics.
They will be open on Thanksgiving and are taking reservations by phone at (865) 325-1210.
36. Timberwood Grill (Pigeon Forge)
Timberwood Grill is located at The Island in Pigeon Forge and also offers traditional American cuisine. They will be open on Thanksgiving but are not offering reservations or call ahead seating.
37. Tony Gore’s Smoky Mountian BBQ (Sevierville)
Tony Gore’s is a grill located on Winfield Dunn Parkway in Sevierville.
On Thanksgiving Day, the restaurant will be open from 11 am to 4 pm.
They will offer a Tony’s Special Ham and Smoked Turkey Breast, available on their Fast Track.
The restaurant encourages call ahead for to-go orders at (865) 429-7771.
The restaurant will not have a lunch option on the holidays, but bulk orders and family pack prices will be the same as usual.
38. Waffle House
Waffle House, like Denny’s, might be a common chain diner. But, you can always rely on them to be open when you need them. And as always, they will be open on Thanksgiving Day in locations across the nation.
Do you know of a local restaurant that will be open on Thanksgiving Day in Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg TN? Let us know in the comments and we will add it to the list!