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The Best Fried Chicken in Every State

By: Jenn Rice

From no-frills shacks to award-winning destination restaurants, these are the best spots from coast to coast to try golden, juicy fried chicken.

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Photo: Rachel Brown Kulp

Honey Butter Fried Chicken (Illinois)

True, the Windy City is home to so much good food, but Honey Butter Fried Chicken exists to curb fried chicken cravings in an instant. Order solo or bring in a group and order a solid mix of fried chicken breasts, drumsticks and thighs, and don’t forget about the sides (pimento mac n’ cheese and kale and cabbage slaw are all the rage). And as the name implies, each order comes with corn muffins and their famous honey butter.

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Photo: Eliesa Johnson

Revival (Minnesota)

Inspired by the scent of fried chicken bubbling away on the stove top during his South Carolina childhood, chef Thomas Boemer of Revival (with locations in Saint Paul and Minneapolis) has learned the craft of making fried chicken. The perfectly seasoned, golden, crackling crust draws return fans. "Revival enables us to bring the South to the Midwest, even when snow is piled high outside our doors," he says. And there are options: Southern fried, Tennessee hot, poultrygeist, and even a gluten-free option.

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Martin’s Restaurant (Alabama)

Food from this legendary Montgomery soul-food restaurant has fueled locals since the 1930s. Though many regulars have their favorites, the most-famous dish is the fried chicken. From crisp breading with a hint of seasoning to the juicy meat inside, these breasts and thighs are perfectly prepared. The dish has been frequently named the best in the city by the local paper, and is often paired with their much-loved corn muffins.

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Photo: Lori Duckworth/Oklahoma Tourism

Eischen's (Oklahoma)

Eischen's, the oldest bar in the state, was established in 1896 by Peter Eischen and has remained a staple to Okarche residents and beyond. It’s wise to order a whole fried chicken with bread, onions and pickles, plopped down on wax paper, meant for table sharing. Plus, order fried okra and a serving of Frito chili pie to make it even more memorable.

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