The Top 10 Restaurant Chains In America Include Some Surprises

Photo: Courtesy of Starbucks.
Where have you been eating? The Nation's Restaurant News knows and has released its list of top 100 chains for 2017 based on the data. The rankings are based on sales in the U.S., overall sales for the top chains, location growth, and estimated sales per location.
In news that will not be surprising to anyone who sees golden arches and immediately craves McNuggets, McDonald's took the top spot with $36.4 billion in sales. Starbucks comes in at a distant number two, with $17.9 billion — still impressive, and a huge lead on number three, Subway, which cleared 1$1.3 billion.
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After that, numbers start getting closer together, with Taco Bell, Burger King, and Wendy's following closely. Pizza Hut is the highest-ranked pizza chain, and the first sit-down restaurant on the list is Applebees, coming in at the 14th spot.
The report also looked at fastest-growing chains, which included newcomers and old favorites. The number one spot went to Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers, which the publication estimates saw sales grow nearly 25% in the past year. While Raising Cane's still has a long way to go (it was ranked 77 overall), some major chains also made the fastest growing list. Chik-fil-A, which came in at number eight overall, took the number five spot in regards to growth, with 16.9% in sales growth in the past year.
In a letter accompanying the findings, editor-in-chief Jenna Telesca notes that showing growth for legacy chains like Chik-fil-A and Panda Express is significant, showing that even older chains can adjust to consumer demands. The report mentions Chik-fil-A switching over from cole slaw to a super greens salad with kale and broccolini as a prime example of how older chains are adjusting to fit changing tastes.
See the complete top ten list below. For the complete list, check out Nation's Restaurant News' full report.
1. McDonalds
2. Starbucks
3. Subway
4. Taco Bell
5. Burger King
6. Wendy’s
7. Dunkin Donuts
8. Chik-fil-A
9. Pizza Hut
10. Domino's
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