chain restaurants The Top Restaurant Chains in America  

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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.
list ordered by

1
2,220 1,100
Chick-fil-A is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Chick-fil-A Restaurant

2
1,799 1,084
Wendy's is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Wendy's Restaurant, Fast food

3
1,389 1,103
Dairy Queen is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Dairy Queen Restaurant, Fast food

4
1,769 746
Five Guys is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Five Guys Burgers and Fries Restaurant, Fast Food

5
1,531 1,316
Subway is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Subway Restaurant, Fast food

6
1,289 1,036
IHOP is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
IHOP Restaurant, Patent Owners and Lessors

7
1,221 1,029
Red Robin is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Red Robin Restaurant, Fast casual restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

8
1,517 1,033
Taco Bell is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Taco Bell Restaurant, Fast food

9
1,147 1,301
KFC is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
KFC Restaurant, Fast food

10
1,439 689
The Cheesecake Factory is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Tina Tucker added Cheesecake Factory Restaurant

11
1,470 918
Olive Garden is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Olive Garden Restaurant

12
1,082 1,140
Burger King is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Burger King Restaurant

13
1,078 946
Red Lobster is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Red Lobster Restaurant

14
1,178 911
Arby's is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Arby's Restaurant, Fast food

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15
1,114 918
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
1,128 1,026
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
1,097 796
Chili's is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Chili's Restaurant

18
1,231 694
Cracker Barrel is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Cracker Barrel Restaurant, Retail

19
1,137 704
Outback Steakhouse is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Outback Steakhouse Restaurant

20
1,051 725
Sonic Drive-In is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Sonic Drive-In Restaurant

21
999 680
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Popeye's Chicken & Biscuits Restaurant, Fast Food

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22
1,048 741
Chipotle Mexican Grill is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America

23
1,128 542
In-N-Out Burger is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
In-N-Out Burger Restaurant

24
879 506
Cold Stone Creamery is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Cold Stone Creamery Restaurant

25
895 561
Steak 'n Shake is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Steak 'n Shake Restaurant

26
901 609
Dunkin' Donuts is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Dunkin' Donuts Restaurant, Bakery, Food and Beverage

27
808 790
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
749 526
Auntie Anne's is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Auntie Anne's Restaurant

The Best Fast Casual Restaurants

29
684 704
Jimmy John's is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Jimmy John's Restaurant

30
743 902
Denny's is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Denny's Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

31
696 647
P. F. Chang's China Bistro is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
P. F. Chang's China Bistro Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

32
628 616
T.G.I. Friday's is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
T.G.I. Friday's Restaurant

33
623 587
Fuddruckers is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Fuddruckers Restaurant

34
715 693
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
538 480
A&W Restaurants is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
A&W Restaurants Restaurant, Fast food

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36
513 222
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
613 462
Cinnabon is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Cinnabon Restaurant, Bakery

38
670 478
LongHorn Steakhouse is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
LongHorn Steakhouse Restaurant

39
543 565
White Castle is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
White Castle Restaurant, Food Manufacturing, Fast food

40
322 685
Tim Hortons is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Tim Hortons Restaurant, Eating and Drinking Places

41
596 728
Little Caesars is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Little Caesars Restaurant

42
665 593
Waffle House is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Waffle House Restaurant

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43
465 643
Golden Corral is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Golden Corral Restaurant

44
586 587
Carl's Jr. is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Carl's Jr. Restaurant, Fast food

45
512 614
Ruby Tuesday is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Ruby Tuesday Restaurant

46
544 599
Jack in the Box is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Jack in the Box Restaurant

47
491 475
Hardee's is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Hardee's Restaurant, Fast food

48
439 494
Boston Market is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Boston Market Restaurant

49
395 418
Ruth's Chris Steakhouse is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Top Restaurant Chains in America
Ruth's Chris Steakhouse Restaurant

50
334 386
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