When you’re seeking an alternative to Alabama Gulf Coast seafood restaurants, there are a couple of seriously cool new places to dine in Gulf Shores: Picnic Beach and Sunliner Diner.

Let’s Have A Picnic!

Picnic Beach, situated just behind The Hangout in Gulf Shores, is not your typical picnic food joint. Think healthy, tasty and fun. And there are even numerous vegan options.

For something cool, light and fruity, a mint melon smoothie might be in order. There’s even a PB&J smoothie. Adults may enjoy adding vodka, tequila or rum to their smoothie or their cold-press juice.

Cold-press juices are also a Picnic Beach favorite, with flavors such as Beet Box Power Juice, Hot Sunrise (with cayenne pepper), Vitamin Blast, and Beach Green Energy Juice among the choices.

The healthy options do not stop with smoothies and cold-press juices. Try a jacked beach acai bowl, with organic acai, vanilla plant protein powder, pineapple, banana, jackfruit cut fresh and granola. Add in some bee pollen or chia seeds for an extra boost. Yum!

Picnic Beach also offers salads, snacks, protein bowls and sandwiches such as the Bison BBQ Burger; the Jacked Up Sandwich, featuring smoked jackfruit; and the Impossible Burger, a vegan option composed of Sriracha barbecue with grilled red pepper, pickled red onion, lettuce and tomato, vegan gouda served on a whole wheat bun.

If you enjoy something a little more traditional, try a smoked meat platter of ribs, pulled chicken, pork, Conecuh sausage, or prime brisket.

If you’re feeding a big group, that’s no problem either. Order a party basket of protein, fixins and sauces ahead.

Fun Food!

If you need a break from seafood, indulge the kid in you with lunch at Wacked Out Weiner. With locations in Foley, Gulf Shores and Daphne, Ala.; St. Louis; and Pensacola, Fla., this "dog" house brings fun to diners from the moment you step inside.

You might find the owner singing the restaurant's catchy jingle, staff wearing a hot dog costume or silly T-shirts, and an atmosphere of amusement delivered with a commitment to serving up great hot dogs.

Top your dogs with up to 40 toppings, including homemade chili, cheese, onions, hot chow chow, sweet chow chow, coleslaw, jalapenos, tomatoes, mac and cheese, baked beans and so many more!

Turn Back The Clock At Sunliner Diner

It’s hard to miss Gulf Shores’ newest dining option on Hwy. 59. It’s not on the beach, but it will come into sight when you’re nearly at the beach. And this one’s a head-turner.

Sunliner Diner is a shiny, chromed-out, bright red-roofed building situated just north of the beach within walking distance of the recently enhanced Gulf Place public beach access.

The building is completely retro inside and out, with wait staff decked in 1950s garb and milkshakes served in tall fountain shop soda glasses.

At Sunliner Diner, breakfast is served all day. Choose from classics like Eggs Benedict, steak and eggs, or a ham and a cheese omelet. Or, choose something with a little more pizzazz like Gulf Shrimp in Creole sauce on a shrimp and Old Bay biscuit.

Lunch and dinner selections are served beginning at 11 a.m., and include diner fare like burgers, sandwiches and salads or specialties like Fried Alabama Catfish, Creole Shrimp and Grits, or Sunliner Meatloaf (just like mom’s but better!).

Don’t leave without indulging in a milkshake (you can get it boozy), banana split, ice cream sundae, or a slice of cake or pie.

The really good news is that Sunliner Diner is open until 2 a.m., so after you’ve had your fill of nightlife, you can fill your tummy with lots of good food before heading back to your vacation rental!

Bring the whole family to the beach for a fun vacation that includes a trip to one of Gulf Shores’ newest restaurants.

Gulf Shores beach houses are always a great headquarters for family getaways.