Top 5 Fried Chicken Restaurants in Knoxville, Tennessee

Top 5 Fried Chicken Restaurants in Knoxville, Tennessee

Fried chicken is as much an American staple as burgers and fries. With many different cities and regions delivering their own take on this dish, you'll find it on the menus of everything from high-end restaurants to fast-food chains, and at dining locations across the country.

Southern-style fried chicken has long been a staple in states like Tennessee, though that too has spread far and wide. In Knoxville, you'll find plenty of restaurants with fried chicken dishes on the menu, as well as different takes on the dish like chicken and waffles or sandwiches.

With a virtual GiftYa card, you can gift a friend or family member some classic fried chicken. Whether you know that they like to try out new brunch spots or are more apt to grab some chicken for carryout to enjoy at home while watching their favorite sport, you can choose from a variety of Knoxville restaurants and purchase a gift card in your choice of amount. Add a personalized note, hit send, and they could be digging into some tasty chicken as soon as tonight.

Ready to find the perfect restaurant to purchase a gift card to? Keep reading to learn the top 5 fried chicken restaurants in Knoxville, Tennessee.

1. Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken

Classic Southern fried chicken in a laid-back restaurant

Pair your fried chicken with classic southern sides. Image courtesy of Yelp.

3101 Sutherland Ave, Knoxville, TN 37919 (

When you're in the mood for simple, delicious fried chicken, nothing beats Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken. Their Southern fried chicken recipe is truly world-famous and has been delighting diners for more than 60 years. The chain was born in Mason, Tennessee, and has since expanded to other parts of Tennessee, as well as into other states like Georgia and Missouri — there are even locations as far away as California.

The menu is straightforward and simple. You can choose your chicken by the cut (breast, thigh, leg, wing, and tender), or by the number, like their two, three, or four-piece plates. Then, select your sides. Their side options are classically Southern as well, with options like mac and cheese, collard greens, coleslaw, and baked beans.

Be warned that the signature spice used on the chicken does have a kick, so if you don't enjoy a bit of spice, this might not be the spot for you. But if you can stand the heat, this will quickly become a must-visit anytime you're close to a Gus's!

"Excellent chicken and sides. The Chess pie is a must. Only thing better than the food was the service. Even better than folks say." -Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken.

2. Jackie's Dream

Made-from-scratch hot chicken and soul foods

Get ready for a kick of heat with this spicy soul food. Image courtesy of Yelp.

1008 E Woodland Ave, Knoxville, TN 37917 (

Tennessee and hot chicken go hand in hand. While Nashville might be known for this signature style, as you might have already guessed from Gus's, the trend is alive and well in Knoxville, too.

At Jackie's Dream, each and every piece of chicken packs a punch of heat and flavor. Owner Jackie prides herself in crafting true soul food. She opened her namesake restaurant in 2015, after years of cooking at and managing local chicken hotspots. Her own recipes are inspired by those whipped up by the chefs in her family.

Unlike many casual chicken restaurants in the city, Jackie's Dream offers far more than just chicken. You'll also find other comfort foods like meatloaf, burgers, and spaghetti, alongside seafood and plenty of tasty side dishes on the menu.

"I had the hot chicken and it was delicious. The only thing better was the hospitable service and down home decor. Reminds me of a Sunday dinner from Big Mama's house! Jackie can throw down! Enjoy!" -Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Jackie's Dream.

3. Maple Street Biscuit Company

Fried chicken served on delicious homemade biscuits

Buttery, flaky biscuits topped with fried chicken and gravy make for a filling breakfast. Image courtesy of Yelp.

9314 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37922 (

Maple Street Biscuit Company describes itself as "comfort food with a modern twist." To sample their take on fried chicken, you'll be digging into a flaky, buttery biscuit. Opt to have it topped with cheese and a scoop of gravy, bacon, and apple butter, or other unique combinations. 

Those who don't want chicken have options too, like fried goat cheese and spinach on a biscuit. Another popular menu items are their waffles, which can also be topped with fried chicken or sweet toppings like strawberries and whipped cream.

While plenty of Maple Street's biscuits would make for a great lunch dish, the menu is largely designed with breakfast or brunch in mind. The restaurant is only open until 2 p.m. each day, and lines often form on weekends as locals and visitors alike go looking for their biscuit fix. Try their maple-flavored coffee alongside your biscuit, or choose from their other coffee shop options.

"Maple Street Biscuit Company is the place to head for if you're craving an exceptional breakfast sandwich!  Their claim to fame is utilizing flaky, buttery, fresh biscuits to make each and every delicious sandwich." -Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Maple Street Biscuit Company.

4. Knoxville Farmacy

Trendy Southern-style food popular for brunch

Image courtesy of Yelp.

5018 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37919 (

While not specifically a spot for fried chicken, Knoxville Farmacy does offer a popular chicken and waffles dish that's a hit during their weekend brunches. This dish features a fluffy Belgian waffle topped with chicken and maple syrup, with a rosemary-maple butter. For dinner, you can also get Nashville Hot Chicken, served with texas toast, housemade pickles, and buttermilk dressing.

The rest of the menu offers plenty of other classic Southern dishes and comfort food staples. Shrimp and grits, brown butter gnocchi, meatloaf, and pork chops are just a few of the dinner options. Everything is made from scratch, and many of their dishes feature locally-sourced ingredients.

"Forget diamonds, forget fancy cars, forget giant houses. If I had all the money, I'd just eat at this place every single day.

At their "new" (not so new, now) location, Farmacy QUICKLY became my go-to dinner spot. Not joking, I am there at least once a week. Don't judge me too hard!" -Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Knoxville Farmacy.

5. Lee's Famous Recipe Chicken

Fast food-style fried chicken with a unique batter

Quick, simple, and tasty fried chicken and sides. Image courtesy of Yelp.

523 Louisville Rd, Alcoa, TN 37701 (

When you're looking to get your fried chicken fix fast, but don't want your standard fast food options like KFC or Popeyes, Lee's Famous Recipe Chicken is a great alternative. They offer several styles of fried chicken, including classic drums and breasts, spicy dippers, tenders, and more. You'll also find the popular Southern staple, fried chicken gizzards, on the menu.

One new item on their menu is their oven-roasted chicken, which is gluten-free and a great option for anyone looking for something a bit healthier. Their side options are simple and classic, like green beans, mac and cheese, and mashed potatoes.

Lee's Famous Recipe Chicken offers catering as well, perfect for delighting everyone at a family reunion, birthday party, or another event.

"Lee's is definitely a step above Popeyes and KFC. The chicken is fried crispy on the outside, tender and moist inside. No dry fast food chicken here. Sides are numerous and very good. The gravy is great. Plenty of seating and parking." -Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Lee's Famous Recipe Chicken.

Knoxville has no shortage of options for classic Southern food, including plenty of spots serving tasty fried chicken. Whether you like your chicken spicy, covered in gravy, or served on top of a fluffy waffle with a mimosa on the side, there's an option for every taste in this Tennessee city.

When you're in the mood for some comfort food, any of the restaurants on this list is a great choice. Hit the drive-thru, order some carry out, or dine-in to enjoy some tasty, filling fried chicken and all of your favorite Southern sides.

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Trae Bodge

Trae Bodge is the shopping expert here at GiftYa. Trae helps people find the best deals and ideas on popular new items to purchase.

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