8 Best Fast Food Chains in the South

Looking for a quick and tasty bite south of the Mason-Dixon line? Anyone of these eight classic fast food chains should do the trick.

The South is blessed with several craving-inducing restaurants. It’s unfortunate that these eateries are geographically challenged, as the world would be a better place if everyone could enjoy the all the greasy and deep-fried deliciousness they have to offer. Here are the eight best fast food chains south of the Mason-Dixon line.

8. Whataburger


This famous burger joint opened in 1950 and now has 750 locations across the South. Whataburger frequently appears as a front-runner in the best burger-in-the-South debate. With a fully customizable menu, fresh made-to-order burgers and fries, and a 24-hhour drive thru, Whataburger is held in high esteem as one of the best fast food chains in the South. If you happen to pass by one, go for the Bacon & Cheese Whataburger to see what it’s all about. Whatashame it’s not located nationwide!

7. Zaxby’s


Zaxby’s was founded in 1990 and has already grown a strong presence in 16 southern states. Known for their chicken-centric menu, Zax sauce, and their signature milkshake flavors including the flavors Birthday Cake, Chocolate Cookie, and Banana Pudding, Zaxby’s popularity has likely far surpassed the initial goals of founders Zach McLeroy and Tony Townley when they dreamed up the idea on the basketball court.

6. Waffle House

Facebook/Waffle House

Wafflehouse has started to venture a little to the North, but it is a Southern icon and it is a tragedy for the entire United States of America that there is not a Wafflehouse around every corner. Their sign is a yellow beacon of hope for every after-midnight craving.  Along with the token waffle, go all the way and get the hashbrowns smothered, covered, peppered, chunked, topped, and country. You won’t regret it.

Related: 30 Reasons You Love Going to Waffle House

5. Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘n’ Biscuits


With only one location located outside of the South, it’s fair to say that Bojangles’ can qualify for this list. Their spicy Cajun chicken, homemade biscuits and Bojangles’ Dirty Rice, will give any Cajun cook a run for their money and have you hearing the faint sounds of New Orleans jazz with every bite.

4. Backyard Burgers

Facebook/Backyard Burgers

Lattimore M. Michael started serving burgers at a local grocery store to try and bring the down home backyard burger flavor to the masses, and after quickly gaining popularity, he opened the first Backyard Burgers restaurant and has been bringing the fresh grilled taste to the South for over 20 years.

3. Bar-B-Cutie


Bar-B-Cutie claims that they have “The World’s Best Barbecue Since 1950,” and they can proudly stake that claim. They have perfected a fast food format for slow- cooked barbecue and provide the perfect alternative to the typical Fast Food offerings, although they are a little bossy telling everyone to “Get Your Booty To Bar-B-Cutie.” On second thought, I think that is a command I will gladly follow.

2. Moe’s Southwest Grill


One of the younger chains on the circuit, Moe’s Southwest Grill offers a fresh take on Southwest food in the Fast Food world. Everything is made to order, they have amazing salsa, and their culture is young and fresh, which is apparent in the names of their menu items, which include “The Homewrecker,” “Joey Bag of Donuts” and “Art Vandalay,” just to name a few. Bonus: free chips and salsa with every order!

1. Krystal


Krystal vs White Castle; the great mini-burger standoff. That’s not likely to be settled anytime soon, but one thing is certain: the South’s mini-burger king is Krystal. The fast food chain has legions of followers who swear it’s superior, as the Krystal burger boasts a larger beef patty and a more substantial bun. Along with the their burgers, Krystal has crafted several other items into miniature bites of guilty pleasure including the Krystal Chik, and “Pups,” their version of mini corndogs.

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8 Best Fast Food Chains in the South