10 Best Spots For Fried Chicken In San Francisco, California

best fried chicken in san francisco
| 5 min read

San Francisco is located in California and it is a major city in the northern part of the state. This port city which sits along Pacific Ocean has an interesting history. It was originally home to Indigenous peoples and in the late 1700s, Spanish explorers set foot in the area. It’s also known for the California Gold Rush in the mid-1800s, which raised the population in the area significantly. Today, the city is a major tourist destination. People come here to see landmarks such as Golden Gate Bridge, to shop at Fisherman’s Wharf, and to check out the art at San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. And it should come as no surprise that a city like this has a great food scene. We’ve selected some of the best spots in this city for fried chicken. Read on for a list of the best spots for fried chicken in San Francisco, California.

1. San Tung

San Tung Chinese Restaurant, Sunset District, San Francisco
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Weegee010 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

San Tung is a small but mighty restaurant. Its intimate space may not be able to seat many people inside, but that doesn’t stop both visitors and tourists from queueing outside. Don’t let the queue length scare you though — it moves quickly and the food is well worth the wait. If you’re here for their fried chicken, you’ll be pleased to know that the dry-fried chicken wings are by far the most popular dish on the San Tung menu. They’re both spicy and sweet and will leave you wanting more. If you want to try their other dishes, the menu is vast and contains plenty of noodle dishes, soups, and Chinese food favourites such as dumplings.

San Tung

Address: 1031 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122, United States

Website: San Tung

Opening hours: Thu - Tue: 11am - 3pm and 5pm - 9:30pm (closed on Wed)

2. Brenda's Meat & Three

Fried chicken
Source: Pixabay

Brenda’s Meat & Three offers you a taste of the American south in the middle of San Francisco. The restaurant opened in 2014 because of owner and chef Brenda Buenviajé who wanted to bring the food she grew up with in New Orleans to the Bay Area. Taking its name from the southern tradition of choosing your main meat and three side dishes, the menu offers up southern classics such as barbecue spare ribs, collard greens, and fried okra. One of the most popular dishes is the fried chicken, which has a spicy batter and is served with hot pepper jelly. The restaurant itself has a vintage, lunch counter vibe, so you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a friendly neighbourhood eatery where everyone knows one another

Brenda's Meat & Three

Address: 919 Divisadero St, San Francisco, CA 94115, United States

Website: Brenda's Meat & Three

Opening hours: 8am - 8pm (daily)

3. Firefly Restaurant

Buttermilk fried chicken with biscuit (12730052894)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ruth Hartnup used under CC BY 2.0

Firefly Restaurant has a cosy and welcoming feeling, creating the atmosphere of a neighbourhood joint where you’re always welcome. They’ve been around since 1993 and their aim is to serve up home-style food using seasonal cuisine. Their fried chicken is one of the best dishes on the menu. It comes with mashed potatoes, slaw, and a biscuit to round out this comforting, classic American dish. The rest of their menu is filled with other American favourites and a number of Japanese-inspired dishes. They also offer vegetarian and vegan options for those who want to skip the meat.

Firefly Restaurant

Address: 4288 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94114, United States

Website: Firefly Restaurant

Opening hours: Tue - Thu: 4pm - 7:30pm; Fri - Sat: 4pm - 8pm (closed on Sun & Mon)

4. Hops & Hominy

Fried chicken with mashed potatoes
Source: Pxhere

With a menu full of grits, catfish, and black-eyed pea fritters, Hops & Hominy is most certainly a restaurant bringing the cuisine of South American to the Bay Area. Beer enthusiasts will be pleased to hear that they’ve got an excellent craft beer selection to accompany your meal. Fried chicken is featured on the menu and their dish comes with mashed potato, a biscuit, and pepper sauce. The restaurant itself has a modern rustic vibe, with beautiful wood flooring and brick walls, so you can enjoy your meal in an Instagram-worthy space.

Hops & Hominy

Address: 1 Tillman Pl, San Francisco, CA 94108, United States

Website: Hops & Hominy

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 1pm - 7pm (closed on Sun & Mon)

5. Hard Knox Cafe

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user DougsTech used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Hard Knox Cafe has a unique Southern diner vibe. With bright red diner seating, repurposed metal panelling for walls, and road signs used as decor, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a friendly neighbourhood gem with a lot of character. The menu is full of Southern classics such as chicken and waffles, pulled pork sandwiches, and catfish. Fried chicken is one of their most famous dishes, and you can get the original recipe or add some heat with the spicy version. They have two locations in San Francisco and the menu does vary between them, so why not check them both out?

Hard Knox Cafe

Address: 2448 Clement Street, San Francisco, CA 94121 and 2526 3rd Street, San Francisco, CA 94107

Website: Hard Knox Cafe

Opening hours: Sun - Thu: 11am - 9pm; Fri - Sat: 11am - 10pm

6. Memphis Minnie's BBQ Joint

Chicken sandwich
Source: Unsplash

Memphis Minnie’s BBQ Joint feels like a quintessential Southern diner with its red-and-white checkered tablecloths and memorabilia adorning its walls. In fact, it’s the longest-running barbecue restaurant in San Francisco. They slow smoke their meats and create all their sauces from scratch, so you’ll be served a true Southern-style dish. The menu features classics such as smoked brisket, potato salad, and ribs. One of their most popular dishes is the fried chicken sandwich, served on a bun with some slaw on top and your choice of side.

Memphis Minnie's BBQ Joint

Address: 576 Haight St, San Francisco, CA 94117, United States

Website: Memphis Minnie's BBQ Joint

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 11am - 10pm; Sun: 11am - 9pm (closed on Mon)

7. a Mano

Fried chicken
Source: Pixabay

At a Mano, you can get a fresh dish of pasta which is handmade in-house every day. It’s an Italian restaurant with California influences and a chef that likes to use seasonal ingredients. There’s a range of fresh pasta to choose from, including seafood and pork-based dishes. If you’re looking for fried chicken, fear not. This Italian eatery also offers up a Tuscan fried chicken dish as a special and during brunch. It’s slightly different from your typical fried chicken, so it’s perfect for those who want to try something new.

a Mano

Address: 450 Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94102, United States

Website: a Mano

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 12pm - 8pm; Fri: 12pm - 9pm; Sat: 11am - 9pm; Sun: 11am - 8pm

8. The Front Porch

Chicken and Waffles 201 - Evan Swigart
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Evan Swigart, The... used under CC BY 2.0

The Front Porch has a friendly neighbourhood feel, the sort of experience you may have when sharing a meal with friends on a porch, as the name suggests. They serve classic Southern dishes with an emphasis on New Orleans cuisine, including fried okra, gumbo, and po'boys. And of course, there’s plenty of fried chicken dishes to chose from. You can get the classic four-piece which comes with collard greens and mashed potatoes, or you can opt for the classic chicken and waffles. If you’re really in the mood for lots of juicy meat, you can order a 10-piece bucket of chicken.

The Front Porch

Address: 65 29th St, San Francisco, CA 94110, United States

Website: The Front Porch

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 4pm - 9pm; Sun: 10am - 3:30pm and 4pm - 9pm (closed on Mon)

9. Blue Plate

Blue Plate SF (14937712558)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Christopher Michel used under CC BY 2.0

Blue Plate has been around since 1999. It offers a cosy atmosphere inside and a romantic patio surrounded by greenery. They serve up classic American comfort food with an upscale Mediterranean twist using local ingredients. You can enjoy classics such as meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and key lime pie. One of their stand-out dishes is, of course, the fried chicken. It’s served with smoked jalapeño buttermilk on a bed of salad with berries.

Blue Plate

Address: 3218 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110, United States

Website: Blue Plate

Opening hours: Wed - Sun: 4pm - 9pm (closed on Mon & Tue)

10. Hot Sauce and Panko

Korean fried chicken
Source: Pixabay

Hot Sauce and Panko is a quirky take-out restaurant serving up Korean comfort food and more than 300 varieties of hot sauce. While you can’t sit down and eat here, chicken lovers can still walk away with a wide range of chicken wings. Korean wings, mango wings, satay wings — there’s plenty to choose from! What about the fried chicken, you ask? As the panko in the restaurant’s name suggests, they offer fried chicken in the form of different sandwiches, including one served on a brioche bun with jalapeño slaw.

Hot Sauce and Panko

Address: 1468 Hyde St, San Francisco, CA 94109, United States

Website: Hot Sauce and Panko

Opening hours: Wed - Sat: 11:30am - 7pm; Sun: 11:30am - 5pm (closed on Mon & Tue)

So much fried chicken to try in San Francisco

Fried chicken lovers are not short of places to try in San Francisco. Whether you’re after comfort food from South America, Korean fried chicken, or even fried chicken with an Italian twist, you can find it here. So, plan to try as many of these best spots for fried chicken in San Francisco, California, as you can.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Nicole is an American expat living in London, England. When she moved from the midwest to London in 2012, it was her first time leaving the US. She has traveled steadily since then, making trips...Read more

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