Cajun food meets sports bar at Jeremiah Bullfrog’s

Cajun food meets sports bar at Jeremiah Bullfrog’s

The scene: The bayou is more than a skip and a hop from the land-locked fields of Iowa—no shrimp boats here, folks. And until last month, Cajun cravings went largely unsatisfied. But new West Des Moines restaurant Jeremiah Bullfrog’s Bar and Grill is doing its best to bring a little Southern hospitality and Louisiana home cooking to a state where beef or pork is king.

Jeremiah Bullfrog’s is tucked away in a strip mall section of West Des Moines, and as my guest and I walked through the door we were greeted with a cheery “how you folks doin’ tonight?” from the bartender. The friendly, charming staff started our night off on the right foot as we hunkered down in a booth.

What we ordered: When someone mentions Cajun food, visions of blackened catfish and pan-fried crustaceans should start dancing through your head. Jeremiah Bullfrog’s plays on that classic cuisine, with a welcome twist on bar food that elevates the menu to a motley selection of cheap, but tasty, plates.

After looking the menu over, my guest and I decided to start things off with an order of Hush Froggies ($4.99), Jeremiah Bullfrog’s version of hushpuppies. The battered cornballs are a Southern staple, and while there wasn’t much differentiating this iteration from the other hushpuppies out there, they still tasted of golden-fried goodness.

Next came the main courses. My guest opted for the Fish Tacos ($6.99), and I tried to be festive with the Swamp Burger ($5.49). The tacos were stuffed with jalapeno lime slaw, grilled tilapia and a bit of ranch to create a well-spiced dish that had seaside flair.

While the Swamp Burger doesn’t have the most appetizing name, the dish was pretty satisfying. It came topped with blue cheese and onion strings, and the patty was rubbed with Cajun spices. I wish the burger was bigger, and I could have used more Cajun kick to balance out the cheese, but it was tasty—especially for the price.

Throughout the rest of the menu you’ll see some common themes. A bunch of the dishes are doused in ranch dressing—including the Gator Tacos, made with real alligator meat and jalapeno slaw. They also serve a great selection of po’boys, with options like shrimp, catfish and Cajun sausage.

What we saw: One of the first things you’ll notice about Jeremiah Bullfrog’s is the crazy number of TVs. It may literally be impossible to look around the restaurant without catching one in your peripheral vision. There’s a personal screen in every booth, which is great for the big game, but on a Tuesday evening when the best thing on was a mediocre college hoops matchup, we just turned it off.

Besides the dining room area, Jeremiah Bullfrog’s has an open bar space with high-top tables, where the mid-twenties crowd hung out, and a shuffleboard table for some light drinking competition.

When to go: Jeremiah Bullfrog’s shines as a bar with an interesting menu, so try stopping by on gameday. They also have some good drink specials throughout the week: $2 tallboys on Monday, $1.50 domestic draughts on Tuesday, and $12 buckets on Saturday and Sunday.

Jeremiah Bullfrog’s Bar and Grill

Find it: 1907 EP True Pkwy., West Des Moines

Hours: Kitchen hours: 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m.-midnight Friday and Saturday

Bar hours: 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily

Info: 515-225-4059;

About the Author

Joe is a contributor to Juice Magazine.

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