Special Report

Fast-Food Brands With the Most Locations in the United States

Arijuhani / Getty Images

It is no secret that Americans have a long-standing love of fast food, but the sheer amount of fast food we consume might still be surprising. According to a 2023 survey conducted by Drive Research, 65% of Americans eat fast food at least once a week, with 13% eating it every day. Only 4% of Americans have not eaten fast food in the last 12 months.

On average, American consumers spend $148 a month on fast food. Millennials spend the most, dropping $213.87 per month at fast-food restaurants. Baby Boomers, on the other hand, only spend $59.43 per month on fast food, making them the only generation that spends less than $100 per month on this quick and convenient fare.

Here’s a look at where our fast-food dollars are going. These are the 50 fast-food franchises with the most locations in the U.S. (If you’re wondering which fast-food franchise is the most popular where you live, here are the most popular fast-food chains in all 50 states.)

24/7 Wall St. compiled this list of the 50 fast-food brands with the most U.S. locations using information from QSR (which stands for Quick-Service Restaurant). QSR is a leading authority on news and trends in the fast food industry.

50. Shake Shack

Shake Shack
Shake Shack is most well-known for its ShackBurger.
  • U.S. Locations: ​287
  • Food Category: Burgers

49. Krispy Kreme

Krispy Kreme
Krispy Kreme sells around 1.6 billion donuts each year.
  • U.S. Locations: ​352
  • Food Category: Donuts

48. In-N-Out Burger

In-N-Out Burger
In-N-Out Burger has locations in five states: California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Texas.
  • U.S. Locations: ​​379
  • Food Category: Burgers

47. Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers

Freddy's
Freddy’s serves frozen custard along with its famous steakburgers.
  • U.S. Locations: ​456
  • Food Category: Burgers

46. El Pollo Loco

El Pollo Loco
Most El Pollo Loco locations are in the southwestern U.S.
  • U.S. Locations: 490
  • Food Category: Mexican Food

45. McAlister’s Deli

McAlister's Deli
Don’t forget to order a sweet tea to accompany your sandwich from McAlister’s Deli.
  • U.S. Locations: 525 ​
  • Food Category: Sandwiches

44. Del Taco

Del Taco
Fun Fact: Del Taco debuted its first drive-thru window nearly a decade before McDonald’s.
  • U.S. Locations: ​591
  • Food Category: Mexican Food

43. Moe’s Southwest Grill

Moe's
Moe’s is known for its burritos, bowls, quesadillas, and fresh salsas.
  • U.S. Locations: ​637
  • Food Category: Mexican Food

42. Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers

Raising Cane's
Raising Cane’s serves chicken fingers, crinkle-cut fries, and the wildly popular Cane’s sauce.
  • U.S. Locations: 646
  • Food Category: Chicken

41. Dutch Bros Coffee

Dutch Bros
Most of Dutch Bros 671 locations are in the western U.S.
  • U.S. Locations: 671
  • Food Category: Coffee

40. Crumbl Cookies

 Crumbl Cookies in Petaluma, California
Crumbl Cookies is the only franchise specializing in cookies to appear in the list.
  • U.S. Locations: ​688
  • Food Category: Cookies

39. Qdoba

Qdoba Mexican Eats
Qdoba is dedicated to “making the world a more flavorful place.”
  • U.S. Locations: ​728
  • Food Category: Mexican Food

38. Bojangles

Bojangles
Bojangles’ 788 locations are primarily found in the southeastern U.S.
  • U.S. Locations: 788
  • Food Category: Chicken

37. Checkers/Rally’s

Rally's
Rally’s and Checkers merged in 1999.
  • U.S. Locations: ​806
  • Food Category: Burgers

36. Church’s Texas Chicken

Church's Texas Chicken
Church’s is known as “Texas Chicken” outside the Americas, so the chain recently changed its name to “Church’s Texas Chicken.”
  • U.S. Locations: ​812
  • Food Category: Chicken

35. Culver’s

Culver's
The Culver’s ButterBurger is a beefy delight.
  • U.S. Locations: 892
  • Food Category: Burgers

34. Zaxby’s

Zaxby's
Zaxby’s is famous for its chicken fingers, wings, and sandwiches.
  • U.S. Locations: 922
  • Food Category: Chicken

33. Whataburger

Whataburger
Whataburger makes its own sauces, including its wildly popular ketchup.
  • U.S. Locations: 925
  • Food Category: Burgers

32. Marco’s Pizza

Marco's Pizza
Marco’s Pizza has locations in 35 states.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,067
  • Food Category: Pizza

31. Carl’s Jr.

Carl's Jr Restaurant
Most Carl’s Jr. locations are in the western U.S.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,068
  • Food Category: Burgers

30. Papa Murphy’s

Papa Murphy's
Papa Murphy’s “Take’N’Bake” pizza allows customers to bake their pizza in their own homes.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,168
  • Food Category: Pizza

29. Firehouse Subs

Firehouse Subs
A portion of every purchase from Firehouse Subs is donated to the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,187
  • Food Category: Sandwiches

28. Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Tropical Smoothie Cafe
Some of the most popular smoothies from Tropical Smoothie Cafe include the Bahama Mama, Acai Berry Boost, Island Green, and Sunrise Sunset.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,198
  • Food Category: Smoothies

27. Five Guys

Five Guys
Five Guys is famous for its burgers and freshly made boardwalk-style fries.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,409
  • Food Category: Burgers

26. Hardee’s

Hardee's
Hardee’s serves burgers, but fans know that the breakfast (especially the biscuits) is the real star of the show.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,707
  • Food Category: Burgers

25. Wingstop

Wingstop
The most popular wing flavors at Wingstop include Lemon Pepper, Original Hot, and Hickory Smoked BBQ.
  • U.S. Locations: 1,721
  • Food Category: Chicken

24. Panera Bread

Panera Bread
Panera’s bread bowls are among the most-ordered items on its menu.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,102
  • Food Category: Sandwiches

23. Jack in the Box

Jack in the Box
Burgers, tacos, and chicken are all served at Jack in the Box.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,180
  • Food Category: Burgers

22. Baskin-Robbins

Baskin-Robbins
Only one ice cream shop made this list: Baskin-Robbins.
  • U.S. Locations: 2.253
  • Food Category: Ice Cream

21. Panda Express

Panda Express
The menu at Panda Express features food with Chinese and Sichuan influences.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,393
  • Food Category: Chinese Food

20. Jersey Mike’s Subs

Jersey Mike's Subs
Founded in New Jersey (obviously), Jersey Mike’s now has locations in all 50 states.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,397
  • Food Category: Sandwiches

19. Jimmy John’s

Jimmy John's
Popular sandwiches at Jimmy John’s include The Pepe, Big John, and the Vito.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,637
  • Food Category: Sandwiches

18. Chick-fil-A

Chick-fil-A
Chick-fil-A makes a higher profit per location than any other U.S. fast food franchise, and it’s not even close.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,837
  • Food Category: Chicken

17. Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen

Popeye's
Popeye’s serves popcorn shrimp in addition to its renowned chicken.
  • U.S. Locations: 2,946
  • Food Category: Chicken

16. Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle
Chipotle is a favorite for burritos, bowls, and it’s famous guacamole.
  • U.S. Locations: 3,129
  • Food Category: Mexican Food

15. Papa John’s

Papa John's
Papa John’s is the fourth-largest pizza chain in the U.S.
  • U.S. Locations: 3,376
  • Food Category: Pizza

14. Arby’s

An Arby's Restaurant In Dawsonville, Georgia
Arby’s welcomes carnivores with its well-known slogan, “We have the meats.”
  • U.S. Locations: 3,415
  • Food Category: Roast Beef

13. Sonic

Sonic
Sonic’s menu includes burgers, chicken, hot dogs, and a huge variety of refreshing beverages.
  • U.S. Locations: 3,546
  • Food Category: Burgers

12. Kentucky Fried Chicken

Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant
Colonel Sanders’ original recipe of 11 herbs and spices is still used today.
  • U.S. Locations: 3,918
  • Food Category: Chicken

11. Little Caesars

Little Caesars
If you’re looking for economical pizza, Little Caesars is the place.
  • U.S. Locations: 4,173
  • Food Category: Pizza

10. Dairy Queen

Dairy Queen
Burgers, fries, and the iconic Blizzards are all part of the DQ menu.
  • U.S. Locations: 4,307
  • Food Category: Burgers

9. Wendy’s

Wendy's
We’ll have a spicy chicken sandwich followed by a Frosty. Mmmm…
  • U.S. Locations: 5,994
  • Food Category: Burgers

8. Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut
The pan pizza from Pizza Hut is legendary.
  • U.S. Locations: 6,561
  • Food Category: Pizza

7. Domino’s

Domino's
Domino’s is the largest pizza chain in the world.
  • U.S. Locations: 6,686
  • Food Category: Pizza

6. Burger King

Burger King
Burger King is the home of the Whopper, one of the most famous burgers in the nation.
  • U.S. Locations: 7,043
  • Food Category: Burgers

5. Taco Bell

Taco Bell
The iconic Mexican pizza returned as a permanent fixture on Taco Bell’s menu in 2022.
  • U.S. Locations: 7,198
  • Food Category: Mexican Food

4. Dunkin’ Donuts

Dunkin'
Dunkin’ sells more donuts than any other U.S. chain.
  • U.S. Locations: 9,370
  • Food Categories: Donuts/Coffee

3. McDonald’s

McDonald's drive-thru
McDonald’s is synonymous with American fast food, but two other franchises have more U.S. locations than the Golden Arches.
  • U.S. Locations: 13,444
  • Food Category: Burgers

2. Starbucks

Starbucks
Starbucks is the world’s largest coffee chain.
  • U.S. Locations: 15,873
  • Food Category: Coffee

1. Subway

Subway
Subway has more U.S. locations than any other fast food brand.
  • U.S. Locations: 20,576
  • Food Category: Sandwiches

Sponsored: Tips for Investing

A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us?
Contact the 24/7 Wall St. editorial team.