THE THRILLIST MENTIONS SLIM CHICKENS
Ever since the Colonel started fiddling around with pressure cookers, the fast-food industry has embraced the humble chicken. Mega-chains like KFC, Popeyes, and Chick-fil-A have the country covered, of course, but the boundless American appetite for chicken has given rise to many quality regional outfits. If we had our way, the chains below — representing everything from old-school fried chicken to international favorites and new-school sandwich shops — would be represented in every state* in the union.
Where they are: Scattered around Arizona, Arkansas, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas
Why you need them: Usually, restaurants sadistically make you choose between tenders and wings, which is essentially the Sophie’s Choice of fast food. But Slim Chickens has managed to cater to fans of both AND antiquated movie references beautifully, with hand-breaded tenders that can be ordered in the same basket as its tender, delicious wings. Oh, and chicken and waffles, the sleeper hit that somehow still eludes most chains.
What to get: The Tenders & Wings basket, obviously, but pair them with some fried pickles and okra, two other choices that are often absent on fast food menus.