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Best Chicken Joints In Chicago

Chicken comes in all styles, and it hard not to love them all. Whether it's hot wings, BBQ, fried, broasted, or roasted, chicken is a go-to meal. It lends itself to so many possibilities. The skin gets nice and crispy, or you can coat it in practically any kind of sauce. There are no shortage of awesome chicken joints in Chicago. Here are some favorites. - Jeff Pearl
Buffalo Joes
Wings from Buffalo Joe's. (credit:

Buffalo Joe's

Multiple Locations, for more information check their website:

Wings and waffle cheese fries are the highlights of the menu at "Buff" Joe's. Their suicide wings will leave your mouth burning for days, but in a good way. They make all of the sauces in house and make sure the wings come dripping. The BBQ sauce for the wings is also sweet and tangy if heat isn't your style.

Wings from Crisp. (credit:


2940 N Broadway St
Chicago, IL 60657
(773) 697-7610‎

One thing Crisp has figured out: chicken is delicious with Korean spices. The wings are gigantic, and if you try either their Seoul Sassy sauce or their Spicy BBQ sauce, you'll be begging for more. On top of the wings, you can also order whole roasted chickens with these delectable flavorings.

Harold's Chicken Shack
Fried chicken from Harolds. (credit:

Harold's Chicken Shack

Multiple locations, various websites based on location.

This franchise Chicago favorite has some of the best fried chicken in the city. With spots open all over town you never have to go too far for a taste of some Harold's. There are no tricks to Harold's and no funky flavorings either. All you'll find is straight up juicy and crispy fried chicken at a good price.

Jake Melnick's
Wings from Jake Melnick's. (credit:

Jake Melnick's Corner Tap

41 E Superior St
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 266-0400‎

Jake Melnick's is a large bar-style restaurant, and accordingly, they have fantastic bar style chicken. Anything with word "Buffalo" near it is downright delicious. A nice balance between heat and creaminess makes this sauce special. Get it on their wings or with the buffalo chicken sandwich, and you won't be sorry.

L Woods
Chicken at L Woods. (credit: Jeff Pearl)

L Woods

7110 N Lincoln Ave
Lincolnwood, Illinois 60712
(847) 677-3350‎

Although not necessarily a chicken place, L Woods still puts out some of the city's best chicken for a special. On Sunday nights, patrons flock to L Woods from far and wide for a taste of the French Fried Chicken. There's a hefty crunch with each bite of the well seasoned breading. They also have excellent fried chicken thighs and BBQ chicken on their menu at all times for those of you that can't make it for Sunday dinner.

Fried chicken from Marcello's. (credit: Jeff Pearl)


Multiple Locations, for more information check their website:

The broasted chicken at Marcello's is the best around. You can get it with one of their sauces like garlic oregano or teriyaki, but the plain country broasted is so fulfilling on its own if you're not one for sauce. They have a full Italian menu to go along with the chicken which is pretty good too. Still, the chicken is so well seasoned and properly cooked, why get anything else.

The Publican
Farm chicken over frites from the Publican. (credit: Jeff Pearl)

The Publican

837 W Fulton Market
Chicago, Illinois 60607
(312) 733-9555‎

People who know the Publican wouldn't expect it to make this list considering it's so famous for serving pork. The chicken comes served over a bed of French fries. When you get the chicken it'll probably be the juiciest one you've had in a long time. Normally, I'd worry that all those precious juices would get lost in serving a family style chicken, but the fries underneath soak it all up to make a devilishly good side.

Tuscany Restaurant
Some of the fare from Tuscany Restaurant. (credit:


Multiple locations, for more information check their website:

Tuscany has a whole array of Italian classics, but the secret star of the menu is the roasted chicken with Italian seasonings. Enthusiastic patrons people pore over the bones trying to get every last scrap. If you don't want the whole roasted chicken, the chicken piccata is also fantastic. The portions are very large, but when you're done you'll still be wishing you had more.

Jeff Pearl
The author. (credit: Jeff Pearl)
Jeff Pearl has lived in the Chicagoland area his whole life and is currently a medical student at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. Food has always been a passion of Jeff's. In his free time, Jeff enjoys either cooking for his friends, going out to a new restaurant, or training for his next triathlon. Check out his blog, Jeff Eats Chicago.
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