Chain Restaurants The Top Restaurant Chains in America  

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Originally by Ranker Community
159.7k votes 7k voters 307.7k views 344 items

List Rules American restaurants that have multiple locations or franchises

The List of Top Restaurant Chains in America includes famous restaurant chains from throughout the United States. Restaurant chains offer a familiarity through their decor and menu throughout all of their locations. As such, they tend to be most popular in areas where one would find travelers or tourists. From fast food, to drive-thrus, and even some sit down franchises, there are a variety of restaurants on this list, each serving different international cuisines or their own takes on American classics.

The idea of chain restaurants is widely credited to Harland Sanders, more famously known as "Colonel Sanders." By "franchising" out his secret recipe, restaurants that served his food had an advantage as travelers knew what to expect. His restaurant, KFC, is now one of the largest in the world. Today, nearly every cuisine imaginable has a restaurant chain attached to it.

Vote up your favorite chain restaurants below, or vote down those you'll never go back to again. Looking for more of a sweet treat? Check out lists of the Best Ice Cream and Frozen Yogurt Chains. Cook up some mediocre Italian food at home using this list of Olive Garden recipes, and take a look at other delicious lists like, the Best Japanese Foods and the Best Brain Foods.

1
2,426 1,197
Chick-fil-A is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Chick-fil-A Restaurant

2
1,949 1,186
Wendy's is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Wendy's Restaurant, Fast food

3
1,908 830
Five Guys is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Five Guys Burgers and Fries Restaurant, Fast Food

4
1,507 1,198
Dairy Queen is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Dairy Queen Restaurant, Fast food

5
1,640 1,439
Subway is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Subway Restaurant, Fast food

6
1,311 1,120
Red Robin is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Red Robin Restaurant, Fast casual restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

7
1,384 1,153
IHOP is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
IHOP Restaurant, Patent Owners and Lessors

8
1,662 1,117
Taco Bell is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Taco Bell Restaurant, Fast food

9
1,252 1,394
KFC is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
KFC Restaurant, Fast food

10
1,563 758
The Cheesecake Factory is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Tina Tucker added Cheesecake Factory Restaurant

11
1,586 990
Olive Garden is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Olive Garden Restaurant

12
1,168 1,233
Burger King is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Burger King Restaurant

13
1,170 1,028
Red Lobster is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Red Lobster Restaurant

14
1,273 987
Arby's is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Arby's Restaurant, Fast food

15
1,205 986
Buffalo Wild Wings is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Buffalo Wild Wings Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

16
1,223 1,118
Starbucks is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Starbucks Coffee and Tea Manufacturing, Coffeehouse, Limited-Service Restaurants

17
1,190 866
Chili's is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Chili's Restaurant

18
1,350 757
Cracker Barrel is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Cracker Barrel Restaurant, Retail

19
1,231 764
Outback Steakhouse is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Outback Steakhouse Restaurant

20
1,132 804
Sonic Drive-In is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Sonic Drive-In Restaurant

21
1,076 760
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Popeye's Chicken & Biscuits Restaurant, Fast Food

22
1,131 813
Chipotle Mexican Grill is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America

23
1,229 599
In-N-Out Burger is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
In-N-Out Burger Restaurant

24
968 558
Cold Stone Creamery is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Cold Stone Creamery Restaurant

25
980 669
Dunkin' Donuts is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Dunkin' Donuts Restaurant, Bakery, Food and Beverage

26
963 621
Steak 'n Shake is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Steak 'n Shake Restaurant

27
893 843
Applebee’s International, Inc. is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Applebee’s International, Inc. Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

28
802 590
Auntie Anne's is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Auntie Anne's Restaurant

29
743 770
Jimmy John's is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Jimmy John's Restaurant

30
811 967
Denny's is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Denny's Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

31
697 668
T.G.I. Friday's is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
T.G.I. Friday's Restaurant

32
754 696
P. F. Chang's China Bistro is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
P. F. Chang's China Bistro Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

33
679 642
Fuddruckers is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Fuddruckers Restaurant

34
772 762
Papa John's Pizza is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Papa John's Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

35
590 528
A&W Restaurants is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
A&W Restaurants Restaurant, Fast food

36
603 271
Krispy Kreme is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Krispy Kreme Restaurant, Bakery, Food and Beverage Stores

37
679 508
Cinnabon is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Cinnabon Restaurant, Bakery

38
730 518
LongHorn Steakhouse is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
LongHorn Steakhouse Restaurant

39
361 740
Tim Hortons is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Tim Hortons Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

40
657 778
Little Caesars is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Little Caesars Restaurant

41
579 628
White Castle is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
White Castle Restaurant, Food Manufacturing, Fast food

42
717 644
Waffle House is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Waffle House Restaurant

43
620 649
Carl's Jr. is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Carl's Jr. Restaurant, Fast food

44
516 706
Golden Corral is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Golden Corral Restaurant

45
542 674
Ruby Tuesday is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Ruby Tuesday Restaurant

46
581 660
Jack in the Box is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Jack in the Box Restaurant

47
536 532
Hardee's is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Hardee's Restaurant, Fast food

48
470 547
Boston Market is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Boston Market Restaurant

49
435 463
Ruth's Chris Steakhouse is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Ruth's Chris Steakhouse Restaurant

50
364 434
California Pizza Kitchen is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
California Pizza Kitchen Restaurant, Food and Beverage, Eating and Drinking Places