The 9 Best Places For Fried Chicken in St. Louis

best fried chicken st louis

St. Louis is considered a midwestern city, but it’s always had solid southern influences. As a big fan of traditional southern cooking, this is just another reason that I love St. Louis.

It’s easy to find a ton of excellent southern comfort food in the area, specifically fried chicken. Read on to discover our picks for the 8 best places for fried chicken in St. Louis.

The 9 Best Places For Fried Chicken in St. Louis

Best value: Porter’s

I live less than a block away from Porter’s, which is dangerous. This place was my go-to when I was a broke college student trying to find a cheap meal. You can get two pieces of chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, coleslaw, and a roll for under $5.00, which is an insane deal.

While Porter’s is the definition of hole-in-the-wall, they offer a variety of really cheap and delicious comfort food. In addition to buckets of fried chicken, they also have fried fish, onion rings, and homemade pie.

Best Korean Fried Chicken: Kimchi Guys

Located right next to the Gateway Arch, you can grab some Korean Fried Chicken after a day of sightseeing. Kimchi Guys is St. Louis’s first Korean Fried Chicken joint, double-frying the chicken to make it extra crispy. After frying, you can pick your sauce: Spicy Original, Korean Buffalo, Garlic Soy, or Honey Butter.

Kimchi Guys also serves Korean-Mexican Barbecue fusion, offering Korean Barbecue tacos, which you probably won’t find anywhere else in the city. They also have a dedicated vegan menu that includes bibimbap and tacos.

Best happy hour: The Pat Connolly Tavern

Patrick Connolly, an Irish immigrant, founded this tavern in 1942. Located in the historic (and very Irish) Dogtown neighborhood, this bar is one of the oldest in St. Louis and one of our clear-cut picks for the best Irish bars in St. Louis.

The Pat Connolly Tavern provides all kinds of classic bar food, but their fried chicken is their true claim to fame. Stop in during their happy hour, from 4-6 on Wednesday-Friday, for deals on wells, Stag, PBR, and dealer’s choice bombs.

Best fried chicken sandwich: Chicken-Out

Chicken-Out is a local fast-food joint, kind of like Chick-Fil-A, but way better. Their chicken is pressure-fried, and the original chicken sandwich comes with mayo, pickles, and a potato bun. They also serve crinkle-cut fries, coleslaw, milkshakes, and delicious mac and cheese.

This restaurant is owned by a St. Louis family who is currently killing it in the restaurant business. Chicken-Out’s sister restaurants include a well-known barbecue joint, a bistro wine bar, and a drive-in restaurant, all of which happen to be some of my favorites in the area.

Most popular: Hodak’s Restaurant and Bar

Hodak’s has been voted “Best Fried Chicken in St. Louis” by a local magazine every year since 1991. Hodak’s is located in the historic Soulard neighborhood and specializes in traditional home cooking.

This restaurant serves several fried-chicken dinners that come with fries and coleslaw, all for under $12. Hodak’s also offers rotating lunch specials, soups, salads, burgers, fish, and other comfort food staples.

Best Nashville Hot Chicken: Southern

Southern is St. Louis’s first Nashville Hot Chicken joint (and maybe the only Nashville Hot Chicken joint?). Even though we aren’t in Nashville, this restaurant is still a must-try. In addition to hot chicken, they offer chicken sandwiches, catfish, and fried green tomatoes.

Southern is owned by a local family that owns several barbecue restaurants (which are all fantastic, by the way!). This restaurant opened in 2015, making it relatively new, but with over 1,000 Google reviews, you could say it has become a hit.

Best atmosphere: The Picadilly at Manhattan

The Picadilly at Manhattan opened in 1901 and has been owned by the Collida family ever since; that’s five generations! The restaurant was beautifully renovated and restored in 2007, and The Picadilly now has a warm and comfortable neighborhood vibe and patio in the Ellendale neighborhood.

In addition to fried chicken dinners, think traditional homecooked meals; this restaurant serves chicken pot pie, short rib pot pie, meatloaf, grilled cheese, and other American classics.

Most authentic: Grace Meat + 3

Grace Meat + 3 opened just a few years ago, providing counter service, authentic Southern food, and traditional southern hospitality. From fried chicken to fried bologna sandwiches, you’ll find lots of down-south-inspired dishes.

In 2018, Food Network voted Grace Meat + 3 as the “Best Fried Chicken in Missouri.” It’s also been featured on the Netflix show “Fresh, Fried, and Crispy.” Not surprisingly, Ever since receiving all of this publicity, this joint has been busy!

Best fast-food fried chicken chain: Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken

Yes, I know that Gus’s is a nationwide chain, but I can’t help but admit that it’s actually really good. If you are looking for some fast, cheap, and consistent fried chicken, you can’t go wrong with Gus’s.

Gus’s serves fresh, natural, hormone-free chicken, and fries everything in peanut oil. They have fantastic chicken plates that come with baked beans, slaw, and white bread, but you can also order sides like mac & cheese, potato salad, and fries.