Shiver’s BBQ in Homestead, Florida

I love Shiver’s BBQ in Homestead; let’s start with that. Before we jump into the beginning, let’s go straight to the food.

The menu at Shiver’s BBQ is much more extensive than the handful of items they initially offered. Do not allow yourself to be overwhelmed by it.

I can make some suggestions to get you started, but you’re on your own from there on out.

Shiver's BBQ Menu
Shiver’s BBQ Menu
Squealing BBQ Potato Skins from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Squealing BBQ Potato Skins

If you’re looking for a starter, look no further than the Squealing BBQ Potato Skins. These potato shells covered in pulled pork, BBQ sauce, and cheese are almost like a meal.

I’m a giant fan of their baby back ribs, but if they’ve got beef ribs the day you’re there, then you need to jump on that with the quickness. The brisket sandwich is another one of my go-to, and you’ve got to choose that Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole as your side. It is some serious business, if you know what I mean.

Brisket Sandwich from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Brisket Sandwich
Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole

The Food from Shiver’s BBQ

Corn Nuggets from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Corn Nuggets
Cornbread Souffle from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Cornbread Souffle
BBQ Beans from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
BBQ Beans
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy
Jumbo Hot Wings from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Jumbo Hot Wings
Sausage from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Pulled Pork Burger from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Pulled Pork Burger
Burnt Ends from Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Burnt Ends

If you can somehow squeeze in some dessert, I vote for the homemade banana pudding.

Now that you’re hungry, there’s nothing else left to do but grab a meal from Shiver’s BBQ. So Dr. Beast says grab two and call me in the morning.

Shiver’s BBQ
28001 S Dixie Highway
Homestead, FL
(305) 248-2272

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Monday 11 am – 9 pm
Tuesday 11 am – 9 pm
Wednesday 11 am – 9 pm
Thursday 11 am – 9 pm
Friday 11 am – 10 pm
Saturday 11 am – 10 pm
Sunday 11 am – 9 pm

Shiver’s BBQ History

Shiver's BBQ in Homestead, Florida
Shiver’s BBQ in Homestead, Florida

In 1951, E.L. Shorty Allen opened a BBQ joint in Kendall called Shorty’s. A few years later (October 1st, 1957, to be exact), Allen opened a second location further down the street in Homestead, Florida.

Allen’s friend and fellow Georgia native Virgil Shiver managed the second spot. In 1960, Virgil purchased the Shorty’s on 28001 Dixie Highway and renamed it Shiver’s Bar-B-Q.

The business was brisk at his location. Unfortunately, if you were driving down to the Florida Keys, there was only one way to get there: driving by Shiver’s BBQ.

When business took a financial hit after the opening of the Florida Turnpike extension in the 1970s, the restaurant pivoted into more of a spot for locals. Until then, they had a steady flow of tourists heading down south.

Shorty's Locations Postcard from 1957
Shorty’s Locations Postcard from 1957

First Retirement, Then a Rebuild

Around this same time, Virgil had a heart attack, and his sons took over the day-to-day operations of the business. He sold about ten years later, and the ownership has changed hands a couple of times since then.

In August 1992, Hurricane Andrew would decimate Shiver’s BBQ. The damage caused meant a rebuild with upgrades slowed by the county’s new building codes.

They temporarily sold hot dogs and chili dogs out of a cart until they could get things up and running again. Finally, on Friday, September 3rd, 1993, the “newish” Shiver’s BBQ with an old soul opened its doors to its adoring fans.

Those same doors would close early that first night when food began to run out.

The Miami Herald reported that on their first day back, they sold—check out these staggering numbers: 55 gallons of coleslaw, 540 buns, 200 pounds of beef, 300 pounds of pork, 250 pounds of chicken, 300 pounds of ribs, and 20 gallons of Shiver’s sauce.

An expansion into Westchester happened in 1994 with the addition of some Hispanic dishes. Unfortunately, it didn’t last very long, and the focus returned to their landmark location in Homestead.

Shiver's BBQ in the Miami Herald 7-31-94
The Miami Herald 7-31-94

More BBQ Talk

Since then, Shiver’s BBQ has consistently been the best BBQ in South Florida. Their competition until this point had been Shorty’s (1951), The Pit BBQ (1970), and Original Uncle Tom’s Barbecue (1948).

However, the BBQ revival in South Florida over the last ten years includes gems like Apocalypse BBQ, Hate Mondays Tavern, Smoke & Dough, plus an array of other after-hour smokers and trailers selling their ‘cue to hungry late-night patrons.

This new blood will keep them on their feet.

3 thoughts on “Shiver’s BBQ in Homestead, Florida”

  1. Thank you for providing this history of Shivers! I grew up going there as a kid. Later as an adult also, but the quality dropped off and I stopped. I’ve seen more cars there recently and it appears to have good reviews now so I’ll have to stop by again soon. But I was curious – do you know why they have a photo of their place called Hickory Ranch on their website? I didn’t know it was owned by Shorty’s in the fifties, but the Hickory Ranch photo looks like maybe the sixties?


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