Soul food isn't just an American tradition; it's a way of life, with deep roots in the South that have spread all over the nation like an uncontrollable fryer spill in the Mississippi. Collard greens, Hoppin' John, fried chicken, neckbones, waffles, biscuits, grits, catfish... they're as American as apple pie, though you'd be better off ordering the apple cobbler at most soul kitchens. Or the banana pudding. Or both.
With an insatiable hunger for fried comfort, we cast our net out and named 21 of the best soul kitchens in the US -- and we know damn well that, with all the hole-in-the-walls, roadside shacks, and small-town favorites out there, we've missed just as many more. Let us know about them in the comments section. We'll check them out when we wake up from our fried chicken nap.