What's The Best Non-Steak Entrée At A Steakhouse? - Tasting Table Survey

Whether you're a fan of a classic New York strip, rich Wagyu, or tender filet mignon, one thing most beef enthusiasts can agree on is that the best way to indulge in your favorite cut is at a top-notch steakhouse. However, for those who abstain from eating red meat (or meat altogether), trips to the steakhouse can be just as delectable.

While classic steak side dishes – like roasted vegetables, mac and cheese, creamed spinach, and potatoes prepared with just about every method possible — can be enjoyed by all, most steakhouses also offer tasty non-beef main dishes sourced from the sea (like fish and lobster), air (like duck and chicken), and beyond.

To get to the bottom of the best alternative steakhouse main dish, we asked a group of 588 Tasting Table readers: What's the best non-steak entrée to order at a steakhouse? Respondents were asked to select between a list of classic mains including lamb, duck, chicken, seafood, and a hearty non-meat favorite, pasta.

Seafood is the top steak alternative

Falling to the bottom of the pack, receiving just 5.10% of the votes for the best non-steak entrée to order was duck, a flavorful fowl that, while often deliciously crispy, didn't appear to be popular with steakhouse customers. Narrowly edging out duck with 9.52% of the total vote was the only red meat option on the list: lamb. Although this gamey meat variety can be prepared in a number of tasty ways, respondents preferred the other main course alternatives.

Falling in the middle of the pack was the only carbohydrate-based entrée, pasta, which can be served with a variety of sauces and proteins, making it a popular choice among vegetarians, meat eaters, and picky eaters alike. The versatile noodle dish received 20.07% of the total vote. Coming in second place was one of the most perennially popular protein options, chicken, which received 32.14% of respondents' votes. 

At the top of the list, narrowly beating out chicken with 33.16% of the total vote, was a broader protein category: seafood. This pescatarian-friendly category, which encompasses popular mains like lobster, shrimp, pan-seared fish, and more, officially earned the title of best non-steak steakhouse entrée, proving that even non-meat eaters can enjoy a night out at the epicenter of all things red meat.