Food & Drink

The Best Chicken and Waffles in LA

Tart/Ross Laurence

Though chicken & waffles likely started in Harlem and has undeniable ties to the South, you’d be hard-pressed to find somebody who wouldn’t agree that LA is prominent in the dish's current scene. We take ‘em seriously -- it’s a matter of pride. Where can you attain this legendary combination, you ask? A whole lot of places, but here are the best of the best.

Plan Check

Fairfax & other locations

OK, it’s not exactly a waffle, but Plan Check’s fried chicken & cruller is a thing of beauty. You’ll get some of Plan Check’s rightfully famous smoky jidori chicken and a pretty sensational maple bacon cruller. Don’t start sprinting over there yet, though -- you can only get it during Plan Check’s Sunday brunch from 10am to 2pm.

courtesy of Baldoria

Baldoria

Little Tokyo

Because the people behind this not-Japanese restaurant in Little Tokyo are genius wizards, they fold waffles around fried chicken like little tacos. And cover them in syrup. And powdered sugar. Genius wizards.

Howlin' Ray's

Chinatown

Straight from Nashville, this hot chicken landmark has been absolutely crushing it in Chinatown since opening. Take the spicier road for brunch (all day Saturday & Sunday) with some hot chicken & waffles (also available in sandwich form). Oh, and bring a book or a podcast, because you’ll be waiting in a hefty line to get your fix.

Hungry Fox

Hungry Fox

Valley Glen

Due to a fiercely loyal fandom, a lot of people will rank the plain-and-simple chicken & waffles at the Fox even higher than Roscoe’s. We’re not ready to say who is right, but we are ready to say that Hungry Fox knows exactly what it's doing. Join the debate and head over there yourself, eh?

Gus's BBQ

Gus's BBQ

Pasadena

Gus’s has long been a local fave thanks to the perfectly golden chicken coming out of its fryer. You’ll see that same gold in the waffle (before you’ve slathered it in maple syrup of course) served with said chicken. We give Gus’ golden chicken & waffles a gold medal.

Bruxie

Bruxie

Santa Monica & other locations

Bruxie’s whole jam is creating delicious sandwiches out of waffles, so you can choose from four different chicken options. Your choices range from the Original (fried chicken, chili honey, and cider slaw), Nashville-Style (hot chicken, tangy sauce, shredded lettuce, and pickles), Buffalo Bleu (buffalo chicken, veggie slaw, blue cheese crumbles, chives, and ranch dressing), and the not-fried Grilled California Pesto (grilled chicken, herb goat cheese, arugula pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and arugula). Get some waffle fries on the side, just to complete the experience.

Roscoe's House of Chicken & Waffles

Multiple locations

Let’s get this one out of the way because, let’s face it, we’d be run out of town if this soul food institution weren’t on here. Choose your favorite parts of the bird (which are fried in a cast-iron skillet to a deep, satisfying brown), wrap 'em in a waffle that's doused in syrup/a scoop of butter, and enjoy. Like, a lot.

Comfort L.A

Comfort LA

Downtown

Comfort LA is as close to a literal hole-in-the-wall as you can get, and it has been murdering the fried chicken game since it opened. During Sunday brunch, which lasts all day, you can get your mitts on the chicken & waffle special (five wings and two waffles) for only $10. While that might sound like plenty of food, you should still accompany that with a side of collards. You’ll be quite happy you did.

Qrious Palate

Long Beach

If you can get over the name, you’re truly in for a treat. Qrious specializes in waffles, so there’s about a hundred different ways you can get your chicken & waffles on. Feelin’ a sandwich? Go for the Chicken Waffle, with fried chicken, coleslaw, and spicy syrup. Feelin’ a plate? You can choose between wings, spicy wings, and strips. Not Korean enough for you? Weird request, but they’ve got Korean-style and bulgogi as well.

Danny Jensen/thrillist

Poppy + Rose

Downtown

Tucked between wholesale flower warehouses, this cozy new breakfast/lunch joint has a chicken & waffle game that is unbelievably on-point. Super-tender, buttermilk-brined chicken is fried to a handsome golden brown and served atop an earthy brown butter vanilla Belgian waffle with a side of smoked honey butter. Also, get the biscuits. Or don't, it's your life. (Really though, get the biscuits.)

Tart

Fairfax

Beat the brunch crowd for a seat on the patio at this modern/rustic spot and dig into the buttermilk fried chicken and oh-so-fluffy waffles that get a drizzle of Tabasco-maple butter. Also: bottomless mimosas.

Danny Jensen/thrillist

Willie Jane

Venice

At this Southern-style Venice brunch staple, TV-vetted chef Govind Armstrong hits you with the one-two punch of expertly fried organic chicken and a fluffy/crisp waffle served with the welcome heat of chili maple syrup and spot-on slaw. Again, get the biscuits. And the house-made multi-chili hot sauce.

Danny Jensen/thrillist

The Serving Spoon

Inglewood

This super-friendly family-run spot is up to some serious good in Inglewood with its chicken/waffle combo. The flaky-peppery crust encasing juicy and meaty chicken is the type you stare at in awe as you anticipate your next bite, and the crisp-yet-spongy waffle delivers. Pro tip: yes, you definitely want the cinnamon on your waffle. Pro-er tip: stop by for The Cookie during the new late-night weekend hours after a show at The Forum (Fri-Sat, 10pm-5am).

Danny Jensen/thrillist

Invention at the Los Angeles Athletic Club

Downtown

Even if you have no intention of using the stunning chandelier-topped pool, or working out at all, we seriously recommend that you become (or befriend) a member of this historic athletic club (or sneak in), if only for the stacked chicken & waffles. Applewood bacon-infused waffle? Check. Crisp buttermilk-fried chicken breast with chipotle aioli? Double check.

Danny Jensen/thrillist

A.O.C.

Beverly Hills

Though an upscale departure from the classic, this dynamic culinary duo drops some heat with a house-signature spicy Spanish fried chicken that’s balanced by a mildly sweet and crunchy cornbread-like waffle... and then topped with thin strips of cured jamón. Uh. Huh.

Danny Jensen/thrillist

Pann's

Westchester

The house specialty at this genuine '50s diner is refreshingly simple: a sweet and sturdy Belgian with crisp, tender wings. The melted butter and warm syrup are just icing on the, er, waffle.

Del Frisco's Grille

Santa Monica

Pull up your leather chair, put your pinkies up, and swankily dig into these crispy birds, spicy syrup-doused waffles, and thick-cut, hickory-smoked bacon.

Instagram/ttkvenice

The Tasting Kitchen

Venice

You're given the option (hahahahahaha) to have your crisp Belgian waffle stuffed with bacon. So, uh, do that, and make sure to dip your waffle (and the accompanying crunchy and meaty fried chicken) into the side of gravy. Oh right, and before you make sure to do that, make sure to get there early for brunch or risk missing out/waiting in line/waiting in line and then missing out.

Bru's Wiffle

Santa Monica

Thankfully not just a pile of Schrute-farmed beets, Dwight’s Special sticks to the classic fryer/griddle combo, and holds its own against the other exotic waffle variations on the menu. Okay, a boneless breast is a bit unorthodox, but, 'cmon.

Belcampo Meat Co.

Belcampo Meat Co.

DTLA

Because sometimes you aren’t satisfied with stuffing your face with just one type of farm animal, these sustainable meat purveyors will dish you up dense hunks of buttermilk-dredged, chicken-fried rabbit along with crunchy waffles, orange-parsley butter, and certified maple syrup.

Brite Spot

Echo Park

Yes, you came here for a slice of bourbon pecan pie. Yes, it's 2am. And yes, you will now also order the corn flake and almond-crusted chicken tenders and Belgian waffles. You’re welcome.

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Danny Jensen is a regular Thrillist contributor and has no objection to combining fried chicken with waffles on a regular, if not daily, basis. Cluck at him on Twitter and Instagram.

Wilder Shaw is a regular Thrillist contributor who will dump equal amounts of hot sauce and syrup on his chicken and waffles. Tell him what a genius he is on Instagram and Twitter.

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1. Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles 1514 N Gower St, Los Angeles, CA 90028 (Hollywood)

There's one place, and one place only, to get chicken and waffles in southern California: Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles. Founded by a Harlem native on a mission to bring straight and simple soul food to LA, Roscoe's serves up miraculous plates of golden-hued fried chicken and crispy waffles. The menu is, of course, full of comfort combos like gravy-smothered chicken with biscuits and eggs-any-way breakfasts. The chain has multiple locations across the greater LA area, but the Hollywood one is in the center of it all.

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2. Tart 115 S Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036 (West Hollywood)

Tart is a well-loved brunch spot thanks to its menu of homey, American dishes that count Mexican and Southern recipes among their many influences. Standbys like fried chicken and waffles, a bacon and blue cheese burger, and a chorizo-loaded breakfast burrito keep the crowds coming, especially to the outdoor patio whose cozy, romantic atmosphere has an undeniable California feel with string lights and plenty of succulents.

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3. Poppy + Rose 765 S Wall St, Los Angeles, CA 90014 (Downtown)

An adorable cafe in the Flower District, Poppy + Rose knows a thing or two about comfort food. Take the super-tender buttermilk-brined fried chicken, which is served atop a brown butter vanilla Belgian waffle with a side of smoked honey butter. Not comforted yet? Try the biscuits and gravy or pulled-pork hash. Tucked between wholesale flower warehouses, this breakfast/lunch spot has a shabby chic vibe accentuated by subway tiles, mismatching chairs, and French-style carafes of water on every table.

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4. Willie Jane 1031 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90291 (Venice)

Willie Jane is a Venice staple for Southern-style brunch and supper. The menu features quintessential comfort foods like warm biscuits with bacon jam and pimento cheese, fried chicken atop crispy waffles, and smoked baby back ribs with watermelon salad. The Abbot Kinney spot gets packed for weekend brunch, and for good reason: house-made beignets, French toast sticks, and again, those damn biscuits, are exactly what you need on Sunday mornings.

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5. The Serving Spoon 1403 Centinela Ave, Inglewood, CA 90302

This Inglewood Southern resto is a solid choice for some late-night face-stuffing, especially if you're stuffing it with their fried chicken, grits, and a GIANT slab of corn bread.

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6. Invention at the Los Angeles Athletic Club 431 W 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90014 (Downtown)

Even if you have no intention of using their stunning chandelier-ed pool, or working out at all, we seriously recommend that you become or befriend a member of this historic athletic club/sneak in, if only for the stacked chicken and waffles. Applewood bacon-infused waffle? Check. Crisp buttermilk fried chicken breast with chipotle aioli? Doublecheck.

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7. AOC 8700 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048 (Mid Wilshire)

Mid-Wilshire's A.O.C. is an intimately styled wine bar, with one of the city’s greatest patios, serving world-class Mediterranean small plates and a solid wine list. With wines from all over the world and a cozy and romantic atmosphere, A.O.C. is a great place to bring a first date that you are really looking to impress.

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8. Pann's Restaurant & Coffee Shop 6710 LA Tijera Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045

This is a 50s-style diner that's on the way to LAX is famous for its fried chicken. Expect it to be classic (and served with waffles in the AM).

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9. Del Frisco's Grille 1551 Ocean Ave. Suite 105, Santa Monica, CA 90401 (Santa Monica)

Del Frisco's caters to a social crowd with food and drink items made to share, including ahi tacos, lollipop chicken wings, and more than 500 regional wines from California and across the globe. The chophouse space -- patio included -- is wide enough to accommodate large groups, and notably large entrees, like the deep-fried Philly cheesesteak, and multiple flatbread options.

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10. The Tasting Kitchen 1633 Abbot Kinney Rd, Venice, CA 90291 (Venice)

A popular brunch spot that also serves dinner and drinks 7 nights a week, the Tasting Kitchen is a hip, somewhat expensive destination. A full bar with craft cocktails complements chef Casey Lane's French-inflected seasonal dishes, while the dining room's modernity is leavened with live trees growing through the floor. You'll want to arrive early to secure a brunch spot, or save this breezy trattoria for a special date night.

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11. Bru's Wiffle - A Waffle Joint 2408 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90403 (Santa Monica)

If you're looking for chicken and waffles smothered in grilled jalapeños/Oaxaca cheese, then Bru's is for you. They open at 8am -- three hours earlier than their sister restaurant, Bru's Counter.

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12. Belcampo Meat Company 317 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013 (Downtown)

This high-end butcher in LA is gussying up slabs of prime meat, and doling out juicy, ridiculously seasoned burgs and sandos.

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13. Brite Spot Diner 1918 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026 (Echo Park)

Eastsiders have been hitting up this Echo Park staple for years for whiskey headache-curing comestibles like the gravy-smothered buttermilk biscuit sammie with fried chicken and bacon.

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14. Plan Check Kitchen + Bar 351 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036 (West Hollywood)

This sophisticated gastropub -- with a few locations across Los Angeles -- is acclaimed for its burgers, whiskey, and craft beer. The namesake Plan Check burger, topped with pickles, onions, and Americanized dashi cheese, is famous for its layer of Ketchup Leather, which is a square of dehydrated tomato paste that melts over the patty like a layer of cheese. Plan Check’s comfort food vibe makes for a hip and social ambience, complemented by tall communal tables and plenty of bar seating.

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15. Baldoria 243 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA 90012 (Downtown)

From Mozza alum David King, Baldoria is an Italian bar-slash-restaurant in downtown LA. The food menu is all about sharing, whether it's one of many meat and vegetarian small plates or thin-crust pizzas. The highlight of the drink menu is the changing selection of pre-bottled cocktails (sealed with nitrogen for freshness) concoted by guest bartenders, but craft beer, global wines, and spirits are also available.

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16. Howlin' Ray's 727 N Broadway #128, Los Angeles, CA 90012 (Downtown)

This Chinatown chicken specialist is the brick-and-mortar outpost of the beloved food truck of the same name. Howlin' Ray's counter-service joint serves up Nashville-style hot chicken sandwiches in five increasing levels of spiciness: mild, medium, hot, extra hot, and howlin' hot, the last of which is characterized by a slightly sweet but intense cayenne pepper burn that's unlike any spice mix you've tasted before. The howlin' hot chicken is almost too spicy to order on its own, which is where the rotating array of daily sides specials like bacon creamed corn and pimento macaroni salad, plus crinkly-cut fries, come in handy to cool your mouth down.

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17. Hungry Fox 13359 Sherman Way, North Hollywood, CA 91605

It's hard to miss the verdant exterior of Hungry Fox, a low-key diner on the corner of Sherman Way and Varna Ave in North Hollywood. The restaurant's plain and simple interior matches that of its menu, which is precisely why it's so reliable. You know what you're getting when you step into Hungry Fox, which should be the cult-worthy chicken and waffles, each of which are crispy, fluffy, and golden brown. The rest of the menu adheres to the recipes in the American diner canon, though there are some Thai flavors mixed in, like in the Thai sausage omelet, another must-order.

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18. Gus's BBQ 808 Fair Oaks Ave, Los Angeles, 91030

And oldie and a goodie, this family-friendly BBQ joint ha been serving up delicious hot meals since the '40s. Get your fix of slow cooked staples and even Mexican dishes here.

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19. Bruxie 1412 3rd St Promenade, Santa Monica, CA 90401 (Santa Monica)

Bruxie is an Orange County-based counter-serve chain proving that waffles hold a sandwich together a hell of a lot better than two slices of bread. The emphasis is on the holy grail of savory waffle creations, chicken and waffles, and you can customize your order by choosing from a few different chicken options, from original fried and Nashville-style hot to the more healthful grilled pesto chicken. Get some waffle fries on the side, just to complete the experience.

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20. Comfort L.A. 1110 E 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021

This little Arts District hole-in-the-wall (in all honesty, it’s more of a take-out window) is slaying the soul food game. The battered-then-fried chicken wings are insanely tasty, especially when served with obligatory sides of mac & cheese, collard greens, and cornbread. The seating amounts to a few tables in a back parking lot, but who cares about ambience when you’re consuming impossibly savory and crunchy fried food? Oh, and if you’re looking for some late-night eats, Comfort L.A. is open until 3am on Fridays and Saturdays.

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21. Qrious Palate 955 E Anaheim St, Long Beach, CA 90813 (Long Beach)

Though it might not be obvious from the name, this Long Beach counter-serve specializes in waffles. The all-day menu features waffles with everything from breakfast sandwiches and nutella-covered bananas to charbroiled burgers, fried chicken, and turkey clubs. Admittedly, some menu items are more out-there than others, like the fried fish waffle sandwich with tartar sauce, but if you have a curious (we mean, qrious) palate, you'll be fine.

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