Moab Restaurants and Accommodations

Moab Restaurants and Accommodations

Arches National Park

Arches National Park has an advantage that few parks share: access to an abundance of great restaurants. Its location just down the road from the town of Moab provides a choice of many cuisines, such as sushi, barbecue, quesadillas, Asian fusion, burgers & fries, and vegan options. Moab is also about 1.5 hours from Canyonlands NP, which isn’t that far in park terms. We visited Moab in the spring of 2018, and again in 2019, so we were able to enjoy a meal at some of our favorites more than once.

Moab Eats

One of our favorite Moab spots, 98 Center (named after its address), has a thoughtful and creative menu. They specialize in Asian (primarily Vietnamese) fusion in a trendy yet casual atmosphere. On our first visit, we ordered a pork banh mi and pho to share. The pho broth was delicious, with a light but well-developed flavor. Travis enjoyed it with a squeeze of fresh lime. We chatted with our waitress about how the restaurant caters to various diets (such as vegan, vegetarian, paleo, and keto) and how she’s influenced the menu.

We loved the cozy vibe, friendly and knowledgeable wait staff, and unique menu items so much we went back for a second visit. And did I mention the banh mi nachos?? So delicious, and they even put vegan cheese on mine.

Arches: Pho at 98 Center in Moab
Pho at 98 Center…makes my mouth water just looking at it!
Arches: Banh Mi at 98 Center
Banh mi at 98 Center
Arches: Philly Cheesesteak at 98 Center
Philly cheesesteak with a cup of pho broth at 98 Center

The line was out the door when we arrived at Love Muffin Cafe. Once we made our way to the front, we both ordered the Bomber Burrito. I asked for no cheese (since I’m sensitive to dairy), and requested that it be marked since we got the same thing. They have a few vegan muffin options, including the Good Morning which has carrots and raisins, and Cranberry Bran, which I decided to try. Next, we found a spot at the “bar” and made ourselves at home. The food was tasty and the place has a funky vibe. The only thing I didn’t like was that my sandwich was not marked, as promised, and yes – they were mixed up.

Arches: Outside Love Muffin in Moab
Outside Love Muffin Cafe
Arches: Burrito at Love Muffin Cafe in Moab
Our burritos at Love Muffin Cafe

During our visit in 2018, Travis waited in the line at the popular Quesadilla Mobilla while I went shopping around the corner. I had contemplated getting “The Vegan,” but didn’t for a few reasons. First, we had just finished breakfast. Second, their menu states that they don’t recommend that option. Maybe it’s a joke (I get it, it’s a quesadilla place), but that’s a terrible business move. Travis got the chicken one, and said it was amazing. It looked crispy and had lots of filling. If I could have eaten it, I would have!

Fast forward to 2019, and this time I wasn’t going to miss out. After waiting in another long line, the server said any quesadilla could be made with beans instead of cheese. I can’t even remember which I decided on, but guess what – it was delicious! And Travis’s, which had cheese of course, looked and smelled great too.

Arches: Quesadilla Mobilla in Moab
The popular Quesadilla Mobilla food truck
Arches: Quesadilla from Quesadilla Mobilla
Travis’ quesadilla from Quesadilla Mobilla

Milt’s is a super casual diner and a Moab institution. It was exactly the atmosphere we were looking for after a day of exploring Arches NP. Most of the seating is outdoors, but an employee announced that there were spots inside. It had gotten a bit chilly, so we headed in and sat at the bar. Travis ordered a bacon cheeseburger and tots. I ordered a buffalo burger and onion rings. It took about 35 mins, which they warned us about in advance. That also gave me time to enjoy the classic – even obscure – country tunes they were playing, which I happen to enjoy.

The food came out hot, and my onion rings were crispy and delicious. They had “fry sauce” on the counter (which the waiter said was a mix of ketchup, mayo, salt, and pepper) which was amazing. I snagged a few tots from Travis and they were nice and crispy on the outside too. Travis got an Oreo milkshake, which he said was good, but it wasn’t as thick as he would like, and chunks of cookie got stuck in the straw. But in my opinion, if you’re gonna get an Oreo milkshake, you can’t really complain about that. Travis said Snack Shack near Redwood NP had a better shake, but he still recommends Milt’s.

Arches: Milts in Moab
The famous Milt’s Stop & Eat in Moab
Arches: Burgers at Milts in Moab
Our burgers at Milt’s…
Arches: Tator Tots and Onion Rings at Milts in Moab
… and our tator tots and onion rings!

We didn’t eat at Sabaku Sushi on our first trip because we questioned how good a sushi place in the middle of Utah could possibly be. It turns out – very. They have plenty of spicy options. In fact, if you’re sensitive to spice, you may want to ask your server to ensure you know what you’re getting.

We shared the Fiery Furnace Roll, which is spicy tuna plus tempura bits on the outside, and spicy sauce on top (which I removed). We also got a Rainbow Bridge Roll which is a standard rainbow roll with fresh fish on top. Travis got tempura which he enjoyed, but some pieces (such as sweet potato) were not cooked through. The Sandstone Crunch Roll – shishito pepper, tempura, avocado, and salmon – was tasty, but one super spicy bite left Travis almost in tears. He got mochi ice cream afterward to calm his palate (so he claimed).

Arches: Appetizers at Sabaku Sushi
Appetizers at Sabaku Sushi – tempura, edamame, and miso soup
Arches: Sushi Rolls at Sabaku Sushi
Rainbow Bridge Roll & Sandstone Crunch Roll

Moab Garage Co. is a surprising name for an ice cream shop – it’s named after the car repair shop that occupied the space from 1928 to 1975. Each serving of ice cream is made to order with liquid nitrogen, and either a dairy or coconut milk base. I got the blueberry basil, which ended up being my fave since it was refreshing and not overly sweet.

On our next visit, I got chocolate (with pretzels and almonds), which was tasty but a bit too sweet for me. Be mindful that some ingredients are not vegan (e.g. the cookie dough contains butter); fortunately the staff is very friendly and forthcoming with allergen info. On one of our visits, they warned me that a few chocolate chips with dairy had gotten in my coconut milk-based ice “cream,” and offered to remake it. I didn’t take them up on it, but I appreciated the offer.

Arches: Inside Moab Garage Co.
Grabbing some ice cream at Moab Garage Co.
Arches: Ice Cream from Moab Garage Co.
Delicious ice cream from Moab Garage Co.

The food at Moab Kitchen was vegan, homey, and unique. The setting was very hippy-esque and laid-back. It appeared that we were literally dining in the backyard / outdoor living room of the chef-owner. We shared a curry dish made with four different veggies including eggplant, jackfruit, and cabbage. While we aren’t vegan, the food was fun and flavorful. We also shared a delicious samosa. If we had stopped there, it would have been an awesome experience.

The cupcakes, which were also vegan, seemed store-bought and didn’t excite me. When I opened my chocolate cupcake, I was shocked to see that it had mold on top. I took it back to the chef; he swore, then gave me a new one. After a thorough check, I tasted it and decided it was only okay. But because of the experience with the first cupcake, I only had a small bite and wasn’t willing to eat the rest. In retrospect, I should have asked for my money back.

Arches: Moab Kitchen Food Truck
Moab Kitchen food truck
Arches: Vegan Curries and Samosas From Moab Kitchen
Vegan curries and a samosa from Moab Kitchen

Travis loves craft beer, so he always ends up dragging me to at least one brewery. Moab Brewery was probably the weakest food we had in Moab. My salmon burger was dry and flavorless. The fries seemed okay at the start, but as they cooled off, they were blah. In a town full of fun and eclectic restaurants, it felt boring and forgettable. Maybe we ordered the wrong thing. Next time I suggested looking up which local restaurants have specific craft beers that Travis wants to try (there must be an app for that), so I can get good food too. We could always swing by the brewery to pick up a souvenir pint glass later. And on the plus side, Travis did enjoy the beer.

Arches: Moab Brewery Food and Beer
Sandwiches at Moab Brewery…forgot to take a picture until we were halfway through

Moab has a fun food scene that’s one of a kind. There are a few places we still didn’t make it to. On our list for next time: Moab Spitfire Smokehouse (a BBQ food truck that closes early if they sell out), El Charro Loco, Miguel’s Baja Grill, and Arches Thai. At least that’s the plan, if we can drag ourselves away from the pho and quesadillas.

Moab Accommodations, etc.

Another thing I like about Moab: Main Street. I love places where the main street is actually called Main Street. This one is a great place to stretch your legs and take in the sights. It’s touristy though, with a seemingly endless line of cars entering Moab from the park. Of course, we’ve only visited during spring break, when Moab has its “Jeep Week,” which is exactly what it sounds like. But people here seemed pretty chill and laid-back.

Indigo Alley is a cute little shop with cool clothes, accessories, and personal care products. The shop owner was very personable and I chatted with her as I browsed the selection of sunglasses and leggings. She said she had been living in the area for almost 30 years.

One morning, we did laundry at Moab Laundry Express. It’s located in a little house just off main street. We walked in and immediately got sticker shock. But the machines looked nice…and we were already there, so we gave it a go. The machines washed and dried our clothes with no issues, so we can’t complain. They had everything you need, including machines that dispense laundry detergent and swap out your bills for change. We had gotten quarters at the hotel and brought a small packet of laundry detergent from home, but it would’ve worked out either way.

Arches: Laundry Express in Moab
Pit stop at Moab Laundry Express
Arches: Inside Moab Laundry Express
Inside Moab Laundry Express

We stayed at Inca Inn in 2018 and had a good experience, so we booked another stay in 2019. Their motel-style rooms are reasonably priced and clean. The shower had weak water pressure, and colorful lights on the showerhead which I thought were pointless (though Travis liked them). It was quiet, with basic amenities such as an older style tv (which we didn’t watch anyway). There weren’t many electrical outlets, but the side table had a power strip which included three USB ports.

While there are plenty of hotel options in town, we appreciated Inca Inn’s friendly staff, clean rooms, comfy bed (more so than most we’ve stayed at), and proximity to Arches NP. A basic breakfast (when we visited they had things like oatmeal packets, hard boiled eggs, cereal, toast, jam, peanut butter, juice, milk, water, and all-day coffee) is included. Think “grab and go” for your adventure in the park. One morning, they only had original unflavored oatmeal, so I asked the hostess and she brought me some flavored options which I really appreciated (it’s the little things, right?). Also, the hot water in their lobby is always HOT, which is more than I can say about other places.

We had a blast in Moab on both our visits, and we can’t wait to go back. It’s a fun place to explore, and it boasts a variety of quirky and delicious restaurants. Best of all, it’s right down the road from Arches National Park.

Arches: Inca Inn in Moab
Inca Inn, where we stayed during both visits to Moab
Arches: Queen Room in Inca Inn
Basic queen room in Inca Inn


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