There’s no better time to be in South Louisiana than Mardi Gras season! Kicking off in early January and lasting through Fat Tuesday (the last day before Lent), Mardi Gras is filled with merrymaking, parades, beads and costumes. For most of us however; the star of Mardi Gras is the food. Whether you’re a Louisiana native looking to cut down on cooking time, a visitor trying the cuisine for the first time or an expat who misses the month of celebration—The Best Stop is the only source you need for all your festive fare. Both our physical location in Scott and our online store have a wide selection of the best local foods that fit right in at any Mardi Gras celebration! Read on for a sample of our mouth-watering Cajun and Mardi Gras specialties.
King Cakes and Their History
King cakes can be traced back to the Catholic celebration of Epiphany, commemorating the three kings who presented gifts to the baby Jesus. This pastry followed early European settlers to Louisiana and has since developed its own traditional association with Mardi Gras.
Louisiana shops and bakeries typically only sell king cakes from the beginning of January through the end of February. These delicious cinnamon pastries are ring-shaped and drizzled in purple, green, and gold icing. The colors have a special meaning: purple represents justice, green celebrates faith and gold symbolizes power. Furthermore, a figurine of a baby is hidden in each king cake. Whoever receives the slice with the baby is not only blessed with a good upcoming year, but is also responsible for bringing the next king cake.
Many shops carry cinnamon flavored king cakes with decadent fillings, but here at the Best Stop—we offer a variety of indulgent fillings that are sure to put you in the mood for revelry (courtesy of our friends at Crystal Weddings Bakery). In addition to classic fillings such as Bavarian cream and plain cream cheese, we have cream cheese fillings mixed with flavors such as chocolate caramel pecan (yes, that’s all one flavor!), blueberry, praline, strawberry and lemon.
Keep in mind that our king cakes are only available starting January 6 (the start of Carnival), and the last ones will ship out on February 15, so make sure you get your order in before then if you plan on having one for Mardi Gras day!
Warm Up With Gumbo
This Louisiana icon is a filling and delicious way to feed a large crowd of family, friends and new acquaintances alike. There’s nothing better than warming up with a hot bowl of gumbo before heading out to the parades—and if you’re spending the day out there, you can even heat it up right there on the route! Gumbo usually requires a time-consuming roux as their base, but if you’re short on time, we carry Savoie’s delicious and convenient dark roux to speed things up. We also stock mouthwatering, fully cooked gumbos that you can take straight to the route with you! Try our homemade Best Stop Gumbo, featuring chicken thighs, smoked sausage, andouille and tasso—seasoned with our signature spice blend. We also carry Lena’s Seafood Gumbo packed with a flavorful blend of shrimp and crab meat. Both options are delicious and convenient—just heat and serve with rice!
Cajun Snacks for The Parade Route
There’s more to Mardi Gras cuisine than big, filling meals! Whether you’re craving something salty to compliment that cold beer or just need a little fuel to keep you on your feet—we’ve got plenty of Cajun snacks for your nibbling pleasure! Perhaps the most popular are our famous Cracklins—deep fried pork skin seasoned just right. We also offer smoked and seasoned beef jerky as a delicious and portable option to snack on. Crunchy, crispy and convenient: these snacks are the perfect thing to throw in a bag and munch on as you let the good times roll.
And don’t forget these traditional Cajun eats that are perfect for a party of hungry revelers:
- Tasso that fits right into red beans and gumbo (but also makes for a great snack by itself)
- Boudin balls and pepper jack boudin wraps that you can order pre-fried or ready-to-fry
- Perfectly-sized boudin party links ready for the portable grill
Show Off Your Cajun Pride
For those planning on cooking an elaborate spread, we carry a selection of high-quality cookware and utensils to ensure you have the best possible experience making gumbo or other Cajun foods. We also stock uniquely Cajun T-shirts, hats and tumblers to keep you shaded and hydrated while you celebrate!
Celebrate Cajun Country All Year Long
The Best Stop in Scott has all the authentic and delicious Mardi Gras food you need. If you are craving some Cajun delights, everything from our king cakes to gumbo can be ordered from our online store and shipped nationwide. Your love for Cajun cuisine doesn’t have to stop on Ash Wednesday, though! The Best Stop is your go-to source for all your favorite Cajun goods—no matter the season. As we move into Lent and Crawfish season, be sure to check out our seafood options, boil seasoning blend, Cajun mayo dip and more.
We hope you’ll stop by and say hello during the Mardi Gras festivities!