When Janice and Wayne Edwards decided to buy a small barbecue restaurant on Texas Parkway in Missouri City 25 years ago, neither had any experience in running a business. Wayne was an engineer, while Janice worked in the restaurant as a cashier. When the owner decided in the early 1990s to sell the restaurant, which was called Grady’s BBQ at the time, the couple decided to take it over. The Edwardses used their savings to buy the business, and they renamed it The Greatest BBQ.

Today, the 1,100-square-foot barbecue restaurant enjoys a stream of regular customers, with the couple serving up brisket, ribs, sausage and chicken, among other meats, with a variety of side dishes as well.

In addition to good food, a good attitude goes a long way in the restaurant business, Janice said.

“It’s the way you greet the people, the way you treat the people that really keeps them coming back,” she said. “Treat them like you want to be treated or treat them like family.”

Wayne does the cooking while Janice bakes and also handles the business side of the restaurant. In the cramped back kitchen of The Greatest BBQ, sauces simmer in big iron pots while Wayne slices homemade sausage before piling it onto a plate next to mounds of leafy collard greens and steaming rice. Meats, such as brisket and rib tips, can be ordered by the pound. Side dishes come in large and small sizes.

In the front of the restaurant, slices of cake that Janice has baked are stacked in a display case. Dinners are served with a slice of cake and a drink. Janice’s cakes include German chocolate, lemon, strawberry and Italian cream, among others.

The Edwards family, longtime Missouri City residents, used their cooking skills to help their neighbors get through the devastation and trauma wrought by Hurricane Ike in 2008. The couple cooked out of their home, feeding the neighborhood as they all worked to rebuild it.

“It really brought the whole neighborhood closer together,” Janice said.

The Greatest BBQ

2358 Texas Parkway, Missouri City
Hours: Mon.-Thu.: 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Fri. & Sat.: 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Sun.: noon-6 p.m