Panguitch Scene: Kenny Rays and Cowboy's Smokehouse

Panguitch’s roots lie in culinary traditions — kind of. The word “panguitch” is a Native American word meaning “big fish,” in reference to what can be found in the nearby lake. Well, you may not find epic seafood options in this town. But, you will find a few eclectic food options to fill your belly while taking a break along your travels, of which Panguitch frequently finds itself at the center. In addition to great access to the forested plateau of the Dixie National Forest, Panguitch serves as the western gateway to Bryce Canyon and beyond, which begins only a few miles south on Highway 89 at the junction with the All-American Road, Scenic Byway 12

One of these community hot spots is Kenny Rays, which serves fare ranging from scrumptious steaks to road-trip-worthy sammies to, okay, yes, Utah trout (and it’s delicious). The small town diner also dishes up hefty breakfast portions on the cheap. But whatever meal you decide to partake in at Kenny Rays, save room for dessert … and by dessert, we mean pie!

The homemade pie at Kenny Rays is the stuff of legends, especially for those travelers who have been hiking, driving, and baking in the sun all day. With its flakey crust, the cool raspberry banana cream pie is a no-brainer. But, honestly, why just have one? Order a round — pie selection varies each day — and try them all. You won’t be disappointed.

While the diner is great, if you really want to get the meat lovers in your life chomping at the bit, swing on down to Cowboy’s Smokehouse. The name essentially says it all: This is a homestyle spot for folks to saddle up and dive into some delicious, real mesquite barbecue. The menu offers a variety of smoked meats — including chicken, ribs, turkey, beef, and steaks — and each item comes with lip-smackin’ baked beans or ranch-style pinto beans.

The sauce on the meat is so divine, you might be inclined to buy a bottle and ship it back home (or put it on everything else you eat that’s savory on your road trip). Better still, stick around into the evening and enjoy live music nightly in this rustic building adorned in Western-style decorations.

Address and GPS Coordinates:

Kenny Rays
80 N Main St, Panguitch, UT 84759
37.823958, -112.435511

Cowboy's Smokehouse Cafe
95 N Main St, Panguitch, UT 84759
37.824105, -112.436018

Enter Your Email Address Get new stories delivered to your inbox

Sign Up For Our Newsletter