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Top 500 Chains

A Restaurant Business and Technomic Special Report

Top 500 Chains

The Top 500 highest-grossing restaurant chains recorded their best overall performance in five years in 2019. Chicken had a moment, tech made another leap and the biggest chains got bigger. This annual report, in partnership with Technomic, highlights the data, trends and brands that defined the year.

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Top 250: The Ranking

Click each concept to see more data.

RankChain2019 U.S. Sales ($000,000)YOY Sales Change2019 U.S. UnitsYOY Unit ChangeMenu Category
1McDonald's$40,41213,846Burger
2Starbucks$21,380*15,049Coffee Cafe
3Chick-fil-A$11,320*2,470Chicken
4Taco Bell$11,2936,766Mexican
5Burger King$10,2047,346Burger
6Subway$10,20023,801Sandwich
7Wendy's$9,7625,852Burger
8Dunkin'$9,2289,630Coffee Cafe
9Domino's$7,0446,126Pizza
10Panera Bread$5,890*2,160Bakery Cafe
11Pizza Hut$5,5587,306Pizza
12Chipotle Mexican Grill$5,5092,584Mexican
13Sonic Drive-In$4,6873,526Burger
14KFC$4,5464,065Chicken
15Olive Garden$4,287866Italian/Pizza
16Applebee's$4,0851,665Varied Menu
17Panda Express$3,9462,209Asian/Noodle
18Arby's$3,8843,359Sandwich
19Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen$3,8122,476Chicken
20Little Caesars$3,811*4,237Pizza
21Dairy Queen$3,7604,381Frozen Desserts
22Buffalo Wild Wings$3,6691,206Sports Bar
23Chili's Grill & Bar$3,563*1,242Varied Menu
24Jack in the Box$3,5042,243Burger
25IHOP$3,2661,710Family Style
26Texas Roadhouse$3,016*553Steak
27Denny's$2,6911,558Family Style
28Papa John's$2,6383,142Pizza
29Outback Steakhouse$2,635724Steak
30Whataburger$2,556830Burger
31Red Lobster$2,490*679Seafood
32Cracker Barrel$2,482660Family Style
33The Cheesecake Factory$2,180206Varied Menu
34Jimmy John's Gourmet Sandwiches$2,1052,787Sandwich
35Hardee's$2,020*1,820Burger
36Zaxby's$1,886*910Chicken
37LongHorn Steakhouse$1,867530Steak
38Culver's$1,795732Burger
39Golden Corral$1,746483Family Casual
40Five Guys Burgers and Fries$1,6611,368Burger
41Red Robin Gourmet Burgers and Brews$1,548556Varied Menu
42Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers$1,466457Chicken
43Carl's Jr.$1,423*1,095Burger
44Wingstop$1,3631,231Chicken
45Waffle House$1,344*1,959Family Style
46Jersey Mike's Subs$1,3401,667Sandwich
47Bojangles'$1,331746Chicken
48BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse$1,161208Varied Menu
49TGI Fridays$1,085*385Varied Menu
50In-N-Out Burger$957*351Burger
Source: Technomic's Top 500 Chain Restaurant Report; *Technomic estimate

Methodology

The Top 500 Chain Restaurant Report is a measure of the largest restaurant concepts by U.S. systemwide sales, based on results from the 2019 calendar year. Relevant information is accrued using a combination of public company financial filings, direct operator surveying, franchise disclosure documents and proprietary valuation algorithms. Technomic Inc. believes that its sources of information are reliable but does not assume any liability for the accuracy or comprehensiveness of the information published.


See Technomic’s complete Top 500 data, analysis, growth forecast and more:
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Insights from the top 500


Behind the Brands


LOOKING AHEAD
“Everyone is going to slow down [due to the coronavirus pandemic]. But pizza and the operators that people know deliver and have all the logistics in place … those guys will do relatively well. It’s the people who are now fighting uphill to say 'Hey, we do delivery,' ... it's going to be very hard for them to get the word out”Kevin Schimpf, manager of industry insights, Technomic
See Technomic's forecast

Menu Segments


“It looks like we were going to have a pretty good year in 2020 that even exceeded 2019. Coronavirus really came at a bad time … given that the industry was showing some very positive numbers.”Joe Pawlak, managing principal, Technomic
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