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A plate stacked with pieces of dark, crusty fried chicken thighs and legs.
Willie Mae’s fried chicken is widely considered one of the best in New Orleans.
Randy Schmidt/Eater NOLA

Where to Eat Crispy Fried Chicken in New Orleans

A big bucket of fried chicken recommendations for summer

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Willie Mae’s fried chicken is widely considered one of the best in New Orleans.
| Randy Schmidt/Eater NOLA

Tender, crispy, juicy, and sometimes spicy — fried chicken pretty much embodies the best of Southern foodways. While New Orleans is in but not necessarily of the South, its fried chicken offerings are damn fine, and not just Louisiana’s own Popeyes, forever number one in the hearts of many. The city and its surrounding area is widely known for its gas station fried chicken, a fact that blesses residents with good chicken almost anywhere, anytime.

This Eater roundup includes a flock of essential spots for fried chicken in New Orleans, ranging from takeout-only to full service. This lineup is mostly about all parts of the bird — sandwiches and wings only are another craving altogether — although Big Freedia’s fave for wings (Manchu) still made the cut. As always, these are ranked geographically, and be sure to check individual restaurant websites and social media for current hours.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Fiorella's Cafe, the Original

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Brothers Kelly and Calcie Fiorella brought their family’s legacy and incredible fried chicken to Gentilly in early 2016. Dating back to 1940s Central City grocery Fiorella’s Fine Food, the near-perfect chicken at Fiorella’s has just a hint of spicy heat and is served over toasted white bread.

McKenzie's Chicken in a Box

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Black checkered floors, a Coke machine, walk-up counters for ordering, and no dining tables don’t make for anything fancy, but McKenzie’s Chicken in a Box is a local favorite serving crunchy fried chicken that’s never greasy. This inexpensive grab-and-go spot is as good as it gets.

Manchu Kitchen

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Manchu is a Seventh Ward hole-in-the-wall place, known for fried chicken wings and yak-a-mein. It’s also local legend Big Freedia’s favorite fried chicken in New Orleans. The fried wings are insanely delicious (with a spicy kick on the finish), awesome for party platters needed on the cheap and quick. There’s also fried boneless chicken used in Chinese dishes like fried rice. Parking is tough, but don’t let that scare you off.

McHardy's Chicken & Fixin'

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It ain’t a party without McHardy’s, and for good reason. This always-busy, tiny takeout spot on Broad is perfect for larger orders (hello, 100 pieces). The consistently delicious crisp chicken is set off by just a touch of peppery heat. Add on sides like red beans and rice, mac and cheese, dirty rice, and fried okra to really make the meal. The lovely family behind the restaurant earned national attention for the zipline/pulley system they implemented temporarily to deliver fried chicken to customers at the start of the pandemic .

Chaps Chicken

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Formerly set in Lakeview, Chaps relocated to Old Metairie a few years back, creating a void for some and a gain for others. Stop by Chaps for po’ boys, blue plate specials, and made-to-order, piping hot fried chicken. It’s peppery but not spicy, and both crisp and juicy enough to still taste great cold. That means always bring home an extra order to stick in the fridge for tomorrow.

Willie Mae's Scotch House

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Often considered one of the best fried chicken offerings in the country, this Treme landmark’s wet-batter recipe sets it apart from nearly every other fried chicken in town, with a crispiness beyond reproach.

Randy Schmidt/Eater NOLA

Morrow's

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The menu is vast at Morrow’s and reflects both Southern and Korean soul thanks to co-owner chef Lenora Chong’s heritage. Besides the likes of chargrilled oysters and Korean barbecue, there’s a mighty fine fried chicken plate served with two sides that includes Korean rice and garlic mashed potatoes. Don’t come in a hurry, the service can be glacial.

Li'l Dizzy's Cafe

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The word that Li’l Dizzy’s was closing was a devastating blow during the pandemic — which made its reopening by the next generation, Arkesha and Wayne Baquet Jr., such a balm. The iconic Treme corner restaurant offers the same great po’boys, gumbo, fried seafood, and some of the best fried chicken in town, everyday.

Clair Lorell/ENOLA

Dooky Chase Restaurant

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Dooky Chase is a Treme institution known for many things: its iconic late chef and owner Leah Chase, the incredible gumbo, its place in the Civil Rights Movement. The fried chicken is a star, available to take out and dine in Tuesday through Saturday for lunch and Friday and Saturday evenings for dinner. Reservations recommended.

Bill Addison/Eater

Key's Fuel Mart

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Key’s, a gas station on the Treme side of Rampart Street just outside the Quarter, is another example of the supremacy of New Orleans gas station chicken. Painted blue and orange and unassuming as expected, Key’s is constantly churning out fresh batches of savory, rich fried chicken, with a crust more like Willie Mae’s than McHardy’s, for example. The best part may be the prices, which make it easier to add a seafood platter to your order.

Highway Fried Chicken and Seafood

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This Jefferson dive is the bomb, a diamond in the rough for fresh, crispy, flavorful chicken with just a hint of spice. Add in Highway Fried’s family sized meals along with hand battered onion rings, tasty red beans and rice and damn good biscuits and dinner’s done.

Coop's Place

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Coop’s slightly spicy Cajun fried chicken is served with savory rabbit jambalaya and sweet coleslaw, making for a truly delightful sensory experience. Soak that part in because you may need it to tolerate the oft-obnoxious drunkards that tend to line up for this always-busy Quarter haunt.

The Fountain Lounge at the Roosevelt New Orleans

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Luckily, chef Carl’s Fried Chicken Mondays at the Roosevelt are back and better than ever in the hotel’s Fountain Lounge. The set menu offers fried chicken, biscuits, coleslaw, red beans and rice, and cobbler, and it is some of the best chicken in town.

Brothers Food Mart

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Gas station fried chicken is kind of Louisiana’s thing — man stations in the greater New Orleans area have chicken that would rival any found at sit-down restaurants. And Brother’s is known for having the best of the best, which is probably why there’s more than 30 locations across the metro area. The Carondelet shop, while not a gas station, is one of Brothers’ best locations for crunchy, not-greasy pieces, as is the gas station in New Orleans East on Crowder.

Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken

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New Orleans may not have needed another chain fried chicken place, but no one complained when a location of Tennessee-born Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken landed in the Warehouse District. Crowned the winner of the 2019 fried chicken festival, Gus’s is loved nationwide for good reason — the never-frozen chicken is marinated for 12 hours before being fried in peanut oil.

Stephen Serio/Eater

The High Hat Cafe

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Louisiana cuisine is the heartbeat of the High Hat Cafe, a relaxed spot that is known for a rich, dark gumbo; fried catfish with cornbread and greens; pimento mac and cheese, and most importantly, fried chicken on Tuesdays only.

Chubbie's Fried Chicken

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Chubbie’s looks like a fast food chain, but is actually just a legit neighborhood spot for fried chicken (and fried seafood) on the West Bank in Algiers. It’s widely regarded as one of the top spots in all of New Orleans, especially for fried gizzards and livers.

Picnic Provisions & Whiskey

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Former Commander’s Palace chef Cory McPhail claims to have visited more than 80 fried chicken spots before landing on the recipe for his crawfish boil hot fried chicken for Picnic Provisions & Whiskey, a partnership between Commander’s Palace and Reginelli’s. Made using heritage boneless light and dark meat chicken and topped with a Crystal hot sauce “pulp,” this fried chicken is one of the spiciest on the map.

Crawfish boil hot fried chicken basket
Picnic Provisions & Whiskey/Facebook

Frankie & Johnny's

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While Uptown’s homey seafood destination Frankie and Johnny’s is primarily a destination for crawfish and cold beer on the patio, the fried to order chicken plate is a juicy gem. Fried to order, the half chicken platter includes a side salad and choice of fries, potato salad or veggie.

Chicken’s Kitchen

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Chicken’s Kitchen in Gretna is New Orleans homestyle cooking at its best, serving large portions, delicious chicken, and great mac and cheese and smothered okra. But back to the chicken — from wings and tenders to legs, these pieces are expertly fried; juicy, tender, and crispy. Bonus — chef Marlon “Chicken” Williams’s food is available for catering.

Fiorella's Cafe, the Original

Brothers Kelly and Calcie Fiorella brought their family’s legacy and incredible fried chicken to Gentilly in early 2016. Dating back to 1940s Central City grocery Fiorella’s Fine Food, the near-perfect chicken at Fiorella’s has just a hint of spicy heat and is served over toasted white bread.

McKenzie's Chicken in a Box

Black checkered floors, a Coke machine, walk-up counters for ordering, and no dining tables don’t make for anything fancy, but McKenzie’s Chicken in a Box is a local favorite serving crunchy fried chicken that’s never greasy. This inexpensive grab-and-go spot is as good as it gets.

Manchu Kitchen

Manchu is a Seventh Ward hole-in-the-wall place, known for fried chicken wings and yak-a-mein. It’s also local legend Big Freedia’s favorite fried chicken in New Orleans. The fried wings are insanely delicious (with a spicy kick on the finish), awesome for party platters needed on the cheap and quick. There’s also fried boneless chicken used in Chinese dishes like fried rice. Parking is tough, but don’t let that scare you off.

McHardy's Chicken & Fixin'

It ain’t a party without McHardy’s, and for good reason. This always-busy, tiny takeout spot on Broad is perfect for larger orders (hello, 100 pieces). The consistently delicious crisp chicken is set off by just a touch of peppery heat. Add on sides like red beans and rice, mac and cheese, dirty rice, and fried okra to really make the meal. The lovely family behind the restaurant earned national attention for the zipline/pulley system they implemented temporarily to deliver fried chicken to customers at the start of the pandemic .

Chaps Chicken

Formerly set in Lakeview, Chaps relocated to Old Metairie a few years back, creating a void for some and a gain for others. Stop by Chaps for po’ boys, blue plate specials, and made-to-order, piping hot fried chicken. It’s peppery but not spicy, and both crisp and juicy enough to still taste great cold. That means always bring home an extra order to stick in the fridge for tomorrow.

Willie Mae's Scotch House

Randy Schmidt/Eater NOLA

Often considered one of the best fried chicken offerings in the country, this Treme landmark’s wet-batter recipe sets it apart from nearly every other fried chicken in town, with a crispiness beyond reproach.

Randy Schmidt/Eater NOLA

Morrow's

The menu is vast at Morrow’s and reflects both Southern and Korean soul thanks to co-owner chef Lenora Chong’s heritage. Besides the likes of chargrilled oysters and Korean barbecue, there’s a mighty fine fried chicken plate served with two sides that includes Korean rice and garlic mashed potatoes. Don’t come in a hurry, the service can be glacial.

Li'l Dizzy's Cafe

Clair Lorell/ENOLA

The word that Li’l Dizzy’s was closing was a devastating blow during the pandemic — which made its reopening by the next generation, Arkesha and Wayne Baquet Jr., such a balm. The iconic Treme corner restaurant offers the same great po’boys, gumbo, fried seafood, and some of the best fried chicken in town, everyday.

Clair Lorell/ENOLA

Dooky Chase Restaurant

Bill Addison/Eater

Dooky Chase is a Treme institution known for many things: its iconic late chef and owner Leah Chase, the incredible gumbo, its place in the Civil Rights Movement. The fried chicken is a star, available to take out and dine in Tuesday through Saturday for lunch and Friday and Saturday evenings for dinner. Reservations recommended.

Bill Addison/Eater

Key's Fuel Mart

Key’s, a gas station on the Treme side of Rampart Street just outside the Quarter, is another example of the supremacy of New Orleans gas station chicken. Painted blue and orange and unassuming as expected, Key’s is constantly churning out fresh batches of savory, rich fried chicken, with a crust more like Willie Mae’s than McHardy’s, for example. The best part may be the prices, which make it easier to add a seafood platter to your order.

Highway Fried Chicken and Seafood

This Jefferson dive is the bomb, a diamond in the rough for fresh, crispy, flavorful chicken with just a hint of spice. Add in Highway Fried’s family sized meals along with hand battered onion rings, tasty red beans and rice and damn good biscuits and dinner’s done.

Coop's Place

Coop’s slightly spicy Cajun fried chicken is served with savory rabbit jambalaya and sweet coleslaw, making for a truly delightful sensory experience. Soak that part in because you may need it to tolerate the oft-obnoxious drunkards that tend to line up for this always-busy Quarter haunt.

The Fountain Lounge at the Roosevelt New Orleans

Luckily, chef Carl’s Fried Chicken Mondays at the Roosevelt are back and better than ever in the hotel’s Fountain Lounge. The set menu offers fried chicken, biscuits, coleslaw, red beans and rice, and cobbler, and it is some of the best chicken in town.

Brothers Food Mart

Gas station fried chicken is kind of Louisiana’s thing — man stations in the greater New Orleans area have chicken that would rival any found at sit-down restaurants. And Brother’s is known for having the best of the best, which is probably why there’s more than 30 locations across the metro area. The Carondelet shop, while not a gas station, is one of Brothers’ best locations for crunchy, not-greasy pieces, as is the gas station in New Orleans East on Crowder.

Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken

Stephen Serio/Eater

New Orleans may not have needed another chain fried chicken place, but no one complained when a location of Tennessee-born Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken landed in the Warehouse District. Crowned the winner of the 2019 fried chicken festival, Gus’s is loved nationwide for good reason — the never-frozen chicken is marinated for 12 hours before being fried in peanut oil.

Stephen Serio/Eater

Related Maps

The High Hat Cafe

Louisiana cuisine is the heartbeat of the High Hat Cafe, a relaxed spot that is known for a rich, dark gumbo; fried catfish with cornbread and greens; pimento mac and cheese, and most importantly, fried chicken on Tuesdays only.

Chubbie's Fried Chicken

Chubbie’s looks like a fast food chain, but is actually just a legit neighborhood spot for fried chicken (and fried seafood) on the West Bank in Algiers. It’s widely regarded as one of the top spots in all of New Orleans, especially for fried gizzards and livers.

Picnic Provisions & Whiskey

Crawfish boil hot fried chicken basket
Picnic Provisions & Whiskey/Facebook

Former Commander’s Palace chef Cory McPhail claims to have visited more than 80 fried chicken spots before landing on the recipe for his crawfish boil hot fried chicken for Picnic Provisions & Whiskey, a partnership between Commander’s Palace and Reginelli’s. Made using heritage boneless light and dark meat chicken and topped with a Crystal hot sauce “pulp,” this fried chicken is one of the spiciest on the map.

Crawfish boil hot fried chicken basket
Picnic Provisions & Whiskey/Facebook

Frankie & Johnny's

While Uptown’s homey seafood destination Frankie and Johnny’s is primarily a destination for crawfish and cold beer on the patio, the fried to order chicken plate is a juicy gem. Fried to order, the half chicken platter includes a side salad and choice of fries, potato salad or veggie.

Chicken’s Kitchen

Chicken’s Kitchen in Gretna is New Orleans homestyle cooking at its best, serving large portions, delicious chicken, and great mac and cheese and smothered okra. But back to the chicken — from wings and tenders to legs, these pieces are expertly fried; juicy, tender, and crispy. Bonus — chef Marlon “Chicken” Williams’s food is available for catering.