California fast food chains keep America running. Whether loading up on snacks during road trips or grabbing a quick lunch, most of us still have the go-to burger and fried chicken joints which keep us coming back for more.
But even a fast food place in California should be good enough to deserve your money. I set out to evaluate the best fast food restaurants in California and determine whether, say, the iconic Golden Arches could stand up to newer chains like Chick-fil-A when it comes to value.
Popular Fast Food Restaurants, Chains in California
1. In-N-Out Burger
Founded in 1948, In-N-Out Burger has become a California institution with an almost fanatic following worldwide. Money staffers proved no less immune, it scores in a chain the highest of all those rated.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.93
- Average MONEY staff rating: 4.67
2. Dairy Queen
Known for its sweet treats, Dairy Queen has come a long way from its origins in Illinois in 1940. Today, the chain serves up lunch and dinner along the famous soft-serve ice cream.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.50
- Average MONEY staff rating: 3.67
Address: 2255 Winchester Blvd, Campbell, CA 95008, USA
Phone No: +1 408-866-2390
Hours: daily 10am–10pm
A Georgia-based fried chicken chain opened in the 1990s, nowadays Zaxby’s is available in over a dozen states. The chain is known for plates that come with “chicken fingers,” crinkle fries, a slice of Texas toast, Zax sauce for dipping, and a drink.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.93
- Average money staff rating: 4.25
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This chain does more than root beer and root beer floats. Round that with a cheeseburger and a side of cheese curds.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.80
- Average money staff rating: 3.33
McDonald’s is best fast food places in California has tried to move towards more sophisticated offerings in recent years, it’s also got all the tried and true menu staples, like its addictive fries and beloved breakfast items.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.86
- Average money staff rating: 3.29
6. Sonic Drive-In
An American drive-in fast-food chain, Sonic is perhaps best fast food restaurants in California where your food is delivered on roller skates and you can eat it in your car. My recommendation, the cherry limeade, and tater tots, a meal fit for kings.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $6.17
- Average money staff rating: 3.89
7. Dunkin’ Donuts
Walk into any Dunkin’ Donuts, the smell of sugar and the coffee rise to greet you. This chain does all-day breakfast, of course, and also has sandwiches and other items for those looking for a quick bite.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.22
- Average money staff rating: 3.07
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8. Bojangles’ Famous Chicken‘n Biscuits
Bojangles’ was not originally on the radar. But this North Carolina-based chain is prominent in the Southeast, serving up the fried chicken, biscuits and a whole lot of seasoning.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $5.55
- Average money staff rating: 3.00
If you’re surprised that the Chick-fil-A barely cracked the top 10, you’re not alone. It turns out the money staff didn’t give this chain’s fried chicken high ratings to outweigh its higher prices.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $7.18
- Average money staff rating: 3.83
The grand dame of fried chicken fast-food chains, Kentucky Fried Chicken filed to pull scores from the money staff. Apparently, there are better options, although perhaps not as widespread, it’s part of Yum. Brands, one of the biggest California fast food chains.
- The average cost of a combo meal: $6.03
- Average money staff rating: 2.78
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Here we have told you about the fast food restaurants in California. These best places to eat in California are going to help you a lot if you are planning your trip to California and also go through our other blogs as well because we have provided all the information needed as per the visitor’s requirement about the fast food spot in California. Share your views in the comment section regarding the mentioned subject.