Everyone loves a good excuse to eat fried chicken for brunch. Chicken and waffles makes it easy: Throw chicken on top of a waffle, and suddenly it's an acceptable part of a morning meal. We found the best examples of the sweet and savory dish all over the city, including Pilsen, Logan Square and River North. If you're looking for the best chicken and waffles in Chicago, we've gathered the best restaurants that get the hearty dish right.
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The best chicken and waffles in Chicago
Longman & Eagle is a longtime brunch favorite, and we're big fans of the the fried chicken and waffles. The chicken is juicy, its skin is crisp, the waffle is light and a small carafe of maple syrup adds just the right amount of sweetness. It's accompanied by a sweet potato and pork belly hash dotted with green onions—the perfect side for the dish. $14. Brunch is served 9am–3pm daily.
Be prepared for leftovers—this dish is huge. It comes on a bigger-than-your-face churro waffle, crispy and packed with sugar and cinnamon, which is topped with a crunchy chicken breast Milanese and pork belly. The pork belly has this dish teetering on “too rich,” but not when you share: Take turns dipping each bite into hot sauce and maple syrup and you’ll be happy. $21.
Giuseppe Tentori's River North darling boasts a mean chicken and waffles. Hunks of boneless chicken breast with a light sweet maple taste dominate this dish, which is peppered with small specks of chives. The waffles are crisp on the outside and fluffy on the inside. A cup of maple syrup accompanies the dish, if you need a bit more sweetness. $15. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday from 10am–2:30pm.
This no-frills Bronzeville rendition will leave you wishing that you had a bottomless stomach. The fried chicken is the star of the restaurant's signature dish, a half chicken served with two waffles packed with cinnamon that is affectionately named the Betty Lou. You can split it with a friend, but you'll have to decide who gets the breast, which boasts the majority of the crispy chicken skin. $16.25. Served all day.
Soho House's diner, which sits above the Allis, serves a powdered sugar-dusted, butter-covered two piece chicken and waffle. Dress it however you like—it comes with both gravy and maple syrup. If you're feeling adventurous, there are bottles of smokey and hot sauces on the table that are sure to add another facet of flavor to your meal. $15. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday from 10am–4pm.
Darnell Reed's counter service restaurant is the epitome of true Southern comfort. Here, apple cider waffles are topped with Reed's rendition of Nashville hot chicken. Settle in at one of the wooden tables for brunch and grab a glass of sweet tea to go with your meal. Luella's Southern Kitchen is BYOB, so don't forget the whiskey to make the morning even sweeter. $12. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday 10am–3pm.
Parson's Chicken and Fish's take on chicken and waffles consists of a fried chicken thigh topped with an egg sunny side up, peppered and drizzled with a maple brown butter. It's one of the more savory versions of the dish, so it's ideal for anyone who finds most versions a tad on the cloying side. $12. Brunch is served weekdays 11am–3:30pm and weekends 10am–3:30pm.
Find the best Bloody Mary to pair with your chicken and waffles
Chicago kicks ass when it comes to Bloody Marys—clearly, because we're also stellar at brunch. Whether you're looking for a light cocktail to help slowly cure your hangover alongside a cup of coffee or need a big Bloody Mary that could practically function as its own dinner to go with a side of fries, Chicago's got you covered.