HARKER HEIGHTS — For a Central Texas business owner, this year marks one for the books.
J.R. Scott, a 2002 Killeen High School graduate, is looking forward to celebrating two years sole ownership of a restaurant he started with a friend.
The idea of Just Cooking BBQ and More sprang from his employment as an Army cook at Fort Hood, working in the dining facilities. It was there, along with then co-worker Gerod Jasper, the idea of starting a business began.
“Gerod taught me everything there was to know about barbecue. How to smoke the meat, about cooking itself,” Scott, 33, said.
Scott also credits his mother, Lou Scott, of his cooking skills.
“I remember always watching my mom cooking growing up, I mean, we barely ate out. We had good meals right at home,” the former Langston University footballer said.
In 2016, with the help of a local named “Jersey,” Scott and Jasper started to make dinner plates outside of nightclub Country Rock. The hearty food started to make waves, specifically on social media.
Posts of their meals spread throughout the city, with Facebook shares in the hundreds.
Within two months, the duo found its 129 W. Veterans Memorial Blvd. location in Heights.
In 2017, Scott took over the business as Jasper ventured to open a nightclub.
“I love cooking, it’s my passion. When I am in the kitchen, I don’t look at myself as the person eating the food but thousands. I want everyone who comes in here to experience great food at a nice price and great customer service,” Scott said.
On Saturday, Just Cooking BBQ is celebrating two years of sole ownership with a customer appreciation day from 6 to 8 p.m.
All items are 20 percent off within the timeframe and patrons can bring their own alcoholic beverages as well.
Just Cooking has a variety of dishes including one called the “Buckle Buster,” a large brisket and barbecue sandwich topped with “a secret sauce.”
The $5 Tuesday special, according to Deric Brown Jr, the restaurant’s shift leader, “is the fastest made sandwich and the most talked about.”
Dusty Abrams, of Waco, said he drops by Just Cooking BBQ during his stops as a truck driver three times a week.
“I first heard about this place on Google and heard about the sandwich. My belly is full when I leave and I feel at home when I come in,” he said.
Shanitra Trevor drives from Copperas Cove to the Heights restaurant “whenever I am in town on a Tuesday and craving a Buckle Buster.”
“It’s really good,” she said.
The sandwich has also hit airwaves as radio personality from 103.1FM, Jamien Green, featured the item in ‘The Best Damn Thing I Ate in Central Texas’ segment in 2016.
Other popular items include smothered pork chops, shrimp po’boys and its homemade sides.
The restaurant is also a hit through food delivery and carryout platform, Waitr, with multiple takeout orders on a daily basis.
For more information on Just Cooking BBQ and More, visit facebook.com/JustCookingBBQ.