Skip to content

11 Restaurant Chains That Serve the Best Fried Chicken & Waffles

Get your brunch buddies ready for the ultimate comfort dish of crispy fried chicken atop fresh waffles.
The product recommendations in this post are recommendations by the writer and/or expert(s) interviewed and do not contain affiliate links. Meaning: If you use these links to buy something, we will not earn a commission.

An almost perfect meal any time of the day, chicken and waffles combines the savory goodness of fried chicken with the sweet and fluffy delights of waffles. The origins of this dish are fiercely debated, but it has roots in Europe, the Pennsylvania Dutch, New York City's Harlem neighborhood, the American South, and African-American cuisine.

The version of the dish that most Americans know and love sees crispy fried chicken served atop a stack of freshly made waffles—freshness being important. Southern-style fried chicken is typically well seasoned, and the sweetness of the waffles creates a striking flavor contrast.

While the classic version of this dish comes with butter and syrup and sometimes hot sauce, there are variations with fruit, whipped cream, and ranch dressing as toppings. Some restaurants even replace the waffles with other starchy, maple syrup-paired breakfast staples, like French toast.

Find this comfort-food favorite at homestyle restaurants, diners, casual fried chicken joints, and upscale brunch spots. If you're craving the crunchy sweetness of the dish, read on to find out some of the best chains to get your fix.

Broken Yolk Cafe

broken yolk cafe chicken and waffles
Broken Yolk Café
Nutrition (Per Order):
Calories: 1,110
Fat: 54 g (Saturated Fat: 21 g)
Sodium: 1,640 mg
Carbs: 107 g (Fiber: 5 g, Sugar: 21 g)
Protein: 50 g

Born in 1979 in California, the Broken Yolk Cafe was a single restaurant until 2010, when the owner was talked into franchising by a loyal customer. Now, 35 locations in Arizona, California, Florida, Idaho, Nevada, and Texas offer full-service breakfast. One of the most flavorful and filling items on the menu is the restaurant's chicken and waffles—crispy chicken tenders served on a Belgian waffle, topped with powdered sugar, a hearty drizzle of syrup, and a scoop of whipped butter.

 8 Restaurant Chains That Serve the Best Waffles

Black Bear Diner

black bear diner chicken waffles
Black Bear Diner / Facebook
Nutrition (Per Order):
Calories: 1,190
Fat: 55 g (Saturated Fat: 13 g)
Sodium: 950 mg
Carbs: 139 g (Fiber: 6 g, Sugar: 47 g)
Protein: 40 g

With 150 locations around the Western U.S., this fast-growing diner chain spreads rustic vibes and hearty comfort food. Known for its bear-heavy decor, the Black Bear is a family-oriented restaurant that serves an all-day breakfast menu, including an excellent chicken and waffles. The recipe centers on a secret recipe for a sweet cream waffle topped with a handful of breaded chicken tenders. It's served with syrup and fresh fruit.

Cheesecake Factory

the cheesecake factory chicken and waffles
The Cheesecake Factory
Nutrition (Per Order):
Calories: 1,190
Fat: 64 g (Saturated Fat: 26 g, Trans Fat: 1.5 g)
Sodium: 1,260 mg
Carbs: 118 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 54 g)
Protein: 44 g

The expansive menu at this 300-plus location chain does have something for just about everyone, which is much of the restaurant's appeal. On the gigantic menu is fried chicken and waffles, available only for Saturday and Sunday brunch. It's worth the wait to dive into a freshly made giant Belgian-style waffle, topped with chunks of crunchy fried chicken and served with syrup on the side.

 11 Breakfast Chains That Serve the Best Biscuits & Gravy


IHOP chicken and waffles
Nutrition (Per Order):
Calories: 1,010
Fat: 50 g (Saturated Fat: 22 g, Trans Fat: 1 g)
Sodium: 1,950 mg
Carbs: 97 g (Fiber: 5 g, Sugar: 6 g)
Protein: 43 g

Not just for pancakes, this chain churns out fluffy, hearty omelets and biscuits and gravy alongside chicken and waffles for breakfast, brunch, or anytime. Four buttermilk-breaded chicken strips are served atop a housemade waffle with a choice of buttermilk ranch, honey mustard, or IHOP sauce.

Big Bad Breakfast

Big Bad Breakfast chicken and waffles
Big Bad Breakfast/Facebook

Nutrition information unavailable.

This growing Southern chain started in Mississippi and is overseen by a James Beard award-winning chef. It elevates breakfast with scratch-made everything, including the made-to-order chicken and waffles. A giant Belgian waffle is topped with crispy fried chicken, honey, and house-made syrup for a sweet, savory meal.

 8 Fast-Food Chains That Serve the Best Hot Chicken

Press Waffle Co.

Press Waffle Co
Press Waffle Co. / Facebook

Nutrition information unavailable.

You may remember Press Waffle Co. from an appearance on TV's "Shark Tank" in 2019. Its business plan focused on authentic European-style waffles. There are eight locations in Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas. With a focus on waffles and a location in the South, you know the chicken and waffles will be next level—and they are. Enjoy two deep-fried crispy tenders with bacon crumble and maple syrup on top of a golden Liége-inspired waffle.

Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles

roscoe's herb's special chicken and waffles

Nutrition information unavailable.

This Hollywood, Calif.-based soul food restaurant chain was founded by Herb Hudson, a Harlem native, in 1975. It is best known for its chicken and waffles, which are served together and separately, along with Southern-favorite sides like candy yams, cornbread, and greens. You can't go wrong on an order here, but regulars swear by Herb's special: half a chicken smothered with gravy and onions over two waffles.

 11 Restaurant Chains That Serve the Best Southern Food

Sweet Chick

sweet chick chicken and waffles

Nutrition information unavailable.

With five locations in New York, Sweet Chick is a smaller chain that dishes up a lot of flavor since opening in Brooklyn in 2013. Like Roscoe's, the focus is chicken and waffles, and the classic with two bone-in pieces of fried chicken over a Belgian waffle never disappoints. Sweet Chick also offers flavored waffles, including apple cinnamon, bacon cheddar, chocolate chip, and vanilla glaze, which take the dish to another level.

Shy Bird

Shy Bird chicken and not waffles
Shy Bird

Nutrition information unavailable.

Another small regional chain, Shy Bird has locations in Boston and Cambridge, Mass., and is known for excellent rotisserie and fried chicken. Diners on a healthier trip love the Tuscan grain bowl, but the chicken and waffles are a savory and sweet mix you can't miss. Fried chicken tops the waffles and is smothered in a maple-Dijon syrup and Frank's Red Hot whipped cream. Yes, that's right: spicy whipped cream!

 6 Fast-Food Chains That Serve the Best Waffles

Tupelo Honey Cafe

tupelo honey fried chicken and waffles
Tupelo Honey / Facebook
Nutrition (Per Order):
Calories: 915

The popular cafe originated in Asheville, N.C., but it now has locations from Texas to Michigan, with more on the way. Serving modern, scratch-made comfort food, the restaurant's famous chicken and waffles is what gets diners in the door. The café offers a classic version, a homestyle version that adds an egg and gravy, a Sriracha honey chicken version for the spice fans, and an over-the-top version made with macaroni and cheese waffles topped with hot chicken, pickles, and buttermilk ranch.

Cracker Barrel

Cracker Barrel Chicken and French Toast
Courtesy of Cracker Barrel

Nutrition (Per Order):
Calories: 1,500
Fat: 96 g (Saturated Fat: 33 g)
Sodium: 2,190 mg
Carbs: 111 g (Fiber: 6 g, Sugar: 26 g)
Protein: 54 g

Okay, this dish isn't technically chicken and waffles, but it's close enough! Besides, you're probably within driving distance of this breakfast-centric chain with more than 600 locations nationwide. If you're craving something slightly different, try Cracker Barrel's chicken and French toast, which pairs a piece of fried chicken with three griddled slices of special recipe French toast, powdered sugar, and sides of whipped butter and syrup.

Tanya Edwards
Tanya Edwards is a seasoned food and health journalist, who has held roles at Yahoo Health as Managing Editor and at Food Network as Programming Director. Read more about Tanya