To say that Americans relish Italian food is an understatement. In reality, the affinity is almost a full-fledged obsession.
Americans can’t get enough of Italian delicacies, from pizza to lasagna and from tiramisu to spaghetti. It’s not surprising that one in every eight American restaurants serves Italian cuisine.
The United States (US) now serves as a home for numerous Italian chain restaurants. A staggering 88% of Americans claim to enjoy Italian cuisine. Therefore, Italian cuisine is the most popular foreign cooking in the country.
Various restaurants claim to be experts in a specific niche of Italian cooking. While some genuinely care about their customers’ satisfaction, others are motivated by commercial gain.
Fortunately, there are several excellent Italian chain restaurants where you may satisfy your craving for Italian food, as we’ll see in this article.
Top 10 Best Italian Chain Restaurants in the US
No matter where you live in the US, you may find an Italian restaurant to suit your tastes by visiting one of the top Italian chain restaurants we’ve listed in this piece.
In the following paragraphs, we’ll list and discuss the 10 most decent Italian chain restaurants in the US. They include:
- Founded in: Orlando, Florida
- Networks in the US: 857 restaurants
- Known for: Breadsticks; soup; salads
At Olive Garden, they serve great salad, and their wonderful breadsticks are irresistible. They also offer comfort food that will suit your taste buds anytime, any day.
On December 13, 1982, the first Olive Garden—a branch of General Mills—opened its doors in Orlando, Florida. The Olive Garden chain had the General Mills restaurant division’s fastest growth rate by 1989, when there were 145 locations. Thus, Olive Garden restaurants had widespread popularity.
Olive Garden is the most prosperous Italian chain restaurant considering the number of locations and sales. No matter the location, the restaurant’s food always has the same high quality.
The tasty pasta bowl, as well as the endless salad, soup, and breadsticks, are some of the restaurant’s ravishing specialties. Plus, their pricing is always fair.
Also Read: Is Olive Garden Closing: Expose The Truth
- Headquarters: 3000 Olympus Blvd, Dallas, Texas, US 75019
- Networks in the US: 54 locations
- Known for: Mini crème bruise; tomato, balsamic & garlic bruschetta; spaghetti with marinara; cup of manhattan clam chowder
Maggiano’s Little Italy is the Italian chain restaurant you’ve always wanted. Whether you’re on a date, trying to feed your family, or just seeking a tasty getaway with friends, this restaurant is the place to go. https://www.lettuce.com/about-us/
This franchise was established in Chicago, Illinois, in 1991 by Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises (LEYE), owned by Rich Melman. Its name derives from Melman’s late partner, Marvin Maggiano, and is renowned for its enormous portions, unique Italian-inspired menu items, and the welcoming atmosphere that permeates each of its eateries.
Even if you come prepared to expect excellence, the flavors will blow your mind, and the presentation is always masterful.
You should be completely confident that whatever you choose to order from the extensive menu at Maggiano’s Little Italy will be delicious. Similarly, you may follow your taste sensations with that amount of confidence. Ensure you’re hungry before visiting the restaurant since you’ll want to have room to enjoy every last piece of what you order.
Maggiano’s Little Italy restaurant doesn’t have a specific address because it has locations around the US — Boston, MA; Philadelphia, PA; Hackensack, NJ; Garden City, NY.
- Headquarters: Tampa, Florida, United States
- Networks in the US: 199 locations
- Known for: Chicken Bryan
Carrabba’s Italian Grill serves superb Italian cuisine. Bloomin’ Brands founded the restaurant in 1986, and its headquarters is in Tampa, Florida. Today, the restaurant chain boasts elegant and enjoyable services.
There’s no significant distinction between their pasta dishes’ and meat meals’ quality. The Chicken Bryan is one of Carrabba’s Italian Grill’s most well-liked menu items.
Lemon butter, goat cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, and wood-grilled chicken are the main ingredients in this magnificent recipe. You also receive a substantial portion of perfectly cooked pasta on the side, topped with a wonderful sauce.
- Headquarters: Lexington, Kentucky, US
- Networks in the US: 217 restaurants
- Known for: Baked spaghetti; pizza; submarine sandwich
In 1988, Kunihide Toyoda founded Fazoil, headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky, US. Today, more than 200 Fazoli’s restaurants are located in more than 25 states in the US.
The delightful breadsticks—often served with one of Fazoli’s renowned sauces to make a completely wholesome meal—are one of the restaurant’s main attractions.
Other decent menu options include baked spaghetti topped with cheese and either chicken or meatballs. You can also order a pizza or a submarine sandwich if pasta isn’t your thing.
- Headquarters: Denver, Colorado, USA
- Networks in the US: 41 locations
- Known for: Various pastas; braised lamb shank; shrimp portofino; grilled salmon; Pollo Caprese; tiramisu
Romano’s Macaroni Grill is indeed a premier Italian franchise. Philip J. Romano founded this chain in 1988, and it now boasts over 40 locations spread across 15 states.
According to popular opinion, this restaurant is the polar opposite of Zio’s Italian Kitchen (reviewed below), and customers prefer the meat meals at this chain.
The meat dishes at Romano’s Macaroni Grill are incredible and mouth-watering at the same time. You’re assured of a memorable treat when you pick an option from the Shrimp Portofino to the Braised Lamb Shank and from the Grilled Salmon to the Pollo Caprese.
Again, their dessert selections are excellent, including the Tiramisu and Romano’s Cannoli.
- Founded in: Davis Square, Somerville, Massachusetts
- Networks in the US: 51 locations
- Known for: Salmon & strawberry salad; butternut squash ravioli; traditional cannoli; polpette meatballs
Joey Crugnale founded Bertucci’s in Davis Square, Somerville, Massachusetts, in 1981. However, it wasn’t until the 1990s that the company expanded rapidly.
Bertucci’s branches are mainly situated in the Northeast US but range as far south as Virginia.
The good news is that Bertucci’s offers reasonably extensive lunch and dinner menus. There’s a good chance that you’ll find your favorite Italian dish on the menu.
Furthermore, this restaurant is a favorite among families since it offers a wide variety of options on its menu for kids.
The enterprise also provides catering services for occasions and large gatherings. Again, the meal at Bertucci’s is consistently wonderful and fairly priced.
- Founded in: Columbus, Ohio
- Networks in the US: 31 locations
- Known for: Pastas; pizzas; cocktails; tiramisu; vanilla gelato
In 1992, Rick and Chris Doody opened the doors of the first Bravo! Italian Kitchen in Columbus, Ohio, by collaborating with Executive Chef Phil Yandolino. They’ve always served delectable Italian cuisine. The restaurant currently has more than twenty locations spread across 14 states.
Bravo! Italian Kitchen also serves traditional Italian cuisine. Salmon and steak are among the dinner options at Italian Kitchen. If you wish to eat healthier, look over their salad menu.
Moreover, the Italian restaurant possesses a variety of decent cocktails and is a fantastic spot for brunch.
Additionally, if you enjoy desserts and confections, this restaurant is the right place. This restaurant chain offers classic treats like vanilla gelato, tiramisu, and vanilla bean crème Brulee. You may take some of the treats home since their servings are relatively large.
- Headquarters: 1705 Clearwater Ave, Bloomington, IL 61704, United States
- Networks in the US: 16 locations
- Known for: Cesar salad; shrimp and chicken in lobster sauce; pastas; pizzas
Biaggi’s Ristorante Italiano is a decent Italian restaurant founded by Todd Hovenden in Bloomington in 1999. The meal is outstanding, and that’s what matters most.
This business is undoubtedly in the top tier if you only consider the meals they provide. After dinner, don’t be shocked if you find yourself licking your plate.
Biaggi’s Ristorante Italiano earns extra merit for having a terrific array of gluten-free food alternatives and serving a delectable fare. Stop by this restaurant if you’re on a gluten-free diet and craving Italian food; you won’t be disappointed.
- Founded in: Dallas, Texas, USA
- Networks in the US: 5 locations
- Known for: 15-layer lasagna; spaghetti; chili; fried ravioli
Your expectations will be incredibly high when you step into a Spaghetti Warehouse restaurant for the first time. There’s no denying the exquisite decor that welcomes you.
Each location has the typical appearance of an Italian restaurant. You’ll begin to salivate when you consider the excellent meal that will undoubtedly be brought to you in the pleasant ambiance.
Robert Hawk founded the chain in Dallas, Texas, in 1972, and at one point, it had branches throughout the southern and eastern regions of the US.
Both small and large groups are catered for at the Spaghetti Warehouse, and some spaces can even host parties. A 15-layer lasagna is one of their best-selling dishes, and their meatballs are awesome. Other striking dishes are chili, spaghetti, and fried ravioli.
The Spaghetti Warehouse offers gluten-free menu products and can accommodate various dietary requirements, despite being known for everything pasta-related.
10. Zio’s Restaurant
- Headquarters: 2035 S Meridian Ave Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73108
- Networks in the US: 16 units
- Known for: Baked Ziti; cheese ravioli; manicotti
In 1994, Ken Selby opened the first Zio’s Italian kitchen in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The menu of Zio’s Italian Kitchen is enormous and offers unlimited delicacies. You can find virtually any Italian food of your preference on the restaurant’s menu. Still, not all the food they offer is of equal quality.
Your approach at Zio’s Italian Kitchen is to steer clear of the meat items and only order pasta.
Their meat options, which range from Grilled Tilapia to Chicken Piccata, may disappoint you. However, their pasta specialties, such as Manicotti, Cheese Ravioli, and Baked Ziti, are impressive.
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How to Select a Decent Italian Chain Restaurant: A Guide
It’s vital to look out for several elements when choosing an Italian chain restaurant in the US. These considerations will enable you to avoid falling for marketing gimmicks and picking inferior or inauthentic Italian chain restaurants unknowingly.
Some essential factors to consider when selecting a classic Italian chain restaurant in the US include the restaurant’s:
- menu options
The opinions and experience of past customers are also important, as customer reviews will prevent you from making wrong choices.
Here are some outstanding suggestions to aid you in selecting a good Italian restaurant:
- Do market research by interviewing past customers or via Google search.
- Ensure that the restaurant is authentic and not an “Italian chain restaurant” in name only.
- The restaurant should be all about Italian cuisine.
- Don’t go in if the restaurant serves pizza at lunch. A classic Italian chain restaurant won’t serve pizza at lunchtime.
- The restaurant’s ambiance matters. Its atmosphere should be enjoyable and serene.
Read More: What Is Brooklyn Style Pizza?
What’s the Best Italian Chain Restaurant in The US?
According to our reviews, the best Italian chain restaurant in the US is Maggiano’s Little Italy, founded in 1991. Not only does their food pack tasty flavors, but they also offer a serene ambiance.
Why Are Specific Days Excluded from Particular Offers for Various Italian Restaurants?
Some eateries serve special delicacies on specific days and hours. To avoid disappointment, we suggest you thoroughly review the terms and conditions before you visit any Italian restaurant.
We’re convinced your next visit to an Italian restaurant will be memorable, having apprised yourself of the United States’ top ten. Additionally, you’ll learn that there’s never a dull moment when trying Italian cuisine because there are various options. Take the time to fully educate yourself on Italian culinary traditions to enjoy the meals.
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Italian food: it's a family reason
Although Italian food is popular across the country, it is particularly popular in the Northeast, where 71% of respondents said they eat it frequently, at least once a month.
Olive Garden competitors include OSF, Domino's Pizza, Yard House, Pizza Hut and Red Lobster. Olive Garden ranks 3rd in CEO Score on Comparably vs its competitors.Is Maggiano's the same as Olive Garden? ›
Maggiano's is more upscale than Olive Garden, while Romano's serves a similar clientele to Olive Garden. Romano's is dealing with many of the same issues as Olive Garden.What is the finest restaurant in the US? ›
- Abacá San Francisco.
- Anajak Thai. Los Angeles.
- Andiario. West Chester, Pa.
- Apteka. Pittsburgh.
- Audrey. Nashville.
- Bacanora. Phoenix.
- Bacoa Finca + Fogón. Juncos, P.R.
- Bonnie's. New York City.
1. Pizza. Though a slab of flat bread served with oil and spices was around long before the unification Italy, there's perhaps no dish that is as common or as representative of the country as the humble pizza.What is the most loved Italian food? ›
- Meatballs in sauce. ...
- Tiramisu. ...
- Risotto. ...
- Amatriciana. ...
- Florentine steak. ...
- Lasagna. ...
- Carbonara. We come to spaghetti carbonara, the most famous dish of the Roman tradition, which needs no introduction. ...
- Pizza. The undisputed queen of the Italian table is the pizza!
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Copenhagen's Noma cedes the title of best restaurant in the world to fellow Copenhagen restaurant Geranium. The World's 50 Best Restaurants honorees for 2022 were announced at a ceremony in London today, crowning Denmark's Geranium as this year's top dining establishment in the world.Is Olive Garden better than Applebees? ›
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Having dined at Maggiano's past month, I was shocked and surprised that such a popular chain heats and serves frozen pastas.Do Olive Garden chefs really train in Italy? ›
Apparently, Olive Garden really has a place in Tuscany where culinary managers go to train but the whole “Culinary Institute of Tuscany” is a just a name created by the restaurant company. The “Institute” is really the restaurant at Riserva di Fizzano, a medieval borgo or hamlet in the heart of Chianti.What is America's number one snack? ›
Well, according to Statista's Global Consumer Survey, 39% don't, but we're going to ignore these people for the time being. As this infographic shows, Cookies are the most popular snack food, with 59 percent of snackers saying they eat the sugary comfort food regularly.What 3 foods do Americans eat the most of? ›
Ask a handful of people to guess America's favorite foods, and you'll likely get some similar answers. It's no secret that pizza, burgers, and fries are big sellers at both fast-food and traditional restaurants.What is the hardest restaurant to get into in America? ›
1. Rao's, New York City, NY. An East Harlem red-sauce institution, this 12-table Italian restaurant has a long history—the restaurant was established in 1896—of being next to impossible to book. Really, the only way to dine is by negotiating an invite from one of Rao's rich-and-famous regulars.What's the #1 restaurant in the world? ›
|2016||Osteria Francescana||El Celler de Can Roca|
|2017||Eleven Madison Park||Osteria Francescana|
|2018||Osteria Francescana||El Celler de Can Roca|
1. Cocina Madrigal, Phoenix, Arizona.What is the most delicious Italian dish? ›
- Pizza. Pizza was born in Naples, the city that claims its paternity and where tomato sauce is certainly added to the thin layer of dough. ...
- Baked lasagna. ...
- Spaghetti carbonara. ...
- Pesto. ...
- Ravioli, Tortellini and Agnolotti. ...
- The Focaccia. ...
- Risotto. ...
Pork is the most common cured meat in Italy, although other meats such as beef, venison and wild boar are also cured. Each region of Italy is known for its own cured meats, known as salumi, based on local customs.
- Gnocchi Sorrento. ...
- Spaghetti Carbonara. ...
- Antipasto Italiano. ...
- Cavatelli. ...
- Fettuccini Alfredo. ...
- Pork Braciola. ...
- Pizza Margherita. To get a full authentic Italian experience, you have to go with the Margherita. ...
1. Pizza [New York, Connecticut, Chicago & Detroit styles] Many dishes seem familiar and they are actually a part of Italian cuisine, such as pizza, lasagna, and spaghetti. However, when it was reinterpreted in America, it truly became its own cuisine for the next generations to come.What do most Italians eat for dinner? ›
A typical dinner at an Italian home is usually pasta, meat, and vegetables, and takes place around 8 p.m. Going out for dinner in Italy is a pretty big thing to do, or eat, for that matter: Several courses, wine, and a long time chatting and lingering are all part of the event.
A typical Italian diet consists of three meals in a day. The most common foods in the Italian diet include pasta, cheese, vegetables, olive oil, meats, and wine. Italians give a lot of importance to fresh ingredients. They use seasonal ingredients to prepare meals.What do Italians usually eat for lunch? ›
Quick lunches out in Italy include paniniand pizze, but in reality, Italians prefer to sit down and eat a full, cooked meal at lunchtime. Ideally, lunch includes courses; a primo piattoor first course, like pasta, gnocchi, or rice, a protein, and vegetables.What is Italy's most popular pasta dish? ›
Ravioli are certainly one of the most famous pasta dishes of Italy. As a matter of fact, there are loads of ravioli variations spread throughout the country.What is the unhealthiest restaurant in America? ›
Consumer Reports (CR) just dished on which ones are the worst. Of these, the Cheesecake Factory is the unhealthiest chain restaurant. It lacks whole grains, has large portions, and one dish with twice as much sodium as the daily recommendation.Who is Texas Roadhouse biggest competitor? ›
Texas Roadhouse competitors include Darden Restaurants, Outback Steakhouse, Logan's Roadhouse, Brinker International and Luby's. Texas Roadhouse ranks 1st in CEO Score on Comparably vs its competitors.What is the only 7 star restaurant in the world? ›
Head to Al Iwan restaurant at Burj Al Arab, dubbed to be "the world's only 7-star hotel". Enjoy a high-class buffet lunch or dinner of authentic Arabian dishes while you take in the sea and city views of Dubai.What is the most posh restaurant in the world? ›
Sublimotion is the most expensive restaurant in the world, costing an eye-watering $2,380 per head. Yes, you read that right! Sublimation charges its diners $2,380 per head for a 20-course tasting menu.
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The tips are not worth it. In lunch time the average checks are $15 meaning a $2 tip. At night the average checks are $40. However, in my area at least, people leave little to no tip.Which is more expensive Longhorn or Olive Garden? ›
LongHorn Steakhouse vs Olive Garden.
For years, Chili's has been known for their baby back ribs (and you probably have that song in your head now!). But, there's so much more the menu has to offer. The best food at Chili's ranges from their famous ribs to appetizers, burgers, chicken sandwiches, sides, and more.Does Olive Garden use mozzarella or Parmesan? ›
Olive Garden's Alfredo Sauce recipe is made with Parmesan and Romano Cheeses, however you can also incorporate Mozzarella, Gruyere, Gouda, or Asiago.Can I wear jeans to Maggiano's? ›
Maggiano's is a family style restaurant so, as long as it is not totally inappropriate, anything is pretty much ok. Events upstairs are usually on the more formal side but downstairs is basically casual.Is Maggiano's made from scratch? ›
And that's how Maggiano's thinks. “We want to keep in line with our made-from-scratch food positioning, and then also offer something special that you may not make at home, or something that may not be as available in other restaurants.Can you wear ripped jeans to Maggiano's? ›
No dress code at any Maggiano's.Do you make good money as a server at Olive Garden? ›
$18. The estimated total pay for a Server at Olive Garden Italian Restaurants is $18 per hour.
Our soup and sauce masters create dishes by hand and from scratch, every day. With fresh, whole ingredients like kale, peppers and squash. Because they know cooking that way – the Italian way- everything tastes better. to everything they make.Do Olive Garden workers keep their tips? ›
Olive garden calculates a percentage of the sales of each server then divides that between everyone on tip share for the hours an individual worked.What is the #1 rated restaurant in the world? ›
|2016||Osteria Francescana||El Celler de Can Roca|
|2017||Eleven Madison Park||Osteria Francescana|
|2018||Osteria Francescana||El Celler de Can Roca|
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|3||Buffalo Wild Wings||3,680|
1. Mod Pizza. You can guess the specialty served at this restaurant, which is the fastest-growing chain in the U.S. for the second consecutive year. Mod Pizza falls into the fast-casual food category, with the owners focused on a socially conscious platform.What's the next big food trend 2022? ›
Expect to see more fish in tins, food on sticks and various Asian flavours on menus and in shops this year. Yakitori — Japanese skewers of meat or vegetables cooked over charcoal — is enjoying increasing popularity in London restaurants.What is the lowest rated restaurant in the world? ›
Colony Cafe - Miami
This Miami eatery regularly finds itself atop "worst restaurant in the country" lists and is the lowest-rated restaurant on all of Yelp. Why is it so bad, and how does it stay in business? According to some, it's by constantly changing the name so as to confuse people –– among other shady tactics.
- Bar. In the restaurant business, bars have the highest profit margins. ...
- Diner. The low cost of breakfast food ingredients increases the profit margin for diners. ...
- Food Truck. ...
- Delivery. ...
- Pizzeria. ...
- Pasta Restaurant.
A “12 Top” refers to a table with 12 diners. A “4 top” has four diners. A “duece” just two.
Sobrino de Botín is a Spanish restaurant in Madrid, founded in 1725, that is the oldest restaurant in the world in continuous operation. The artist Francisco de Goya worked in Café Botín as a waiter while waiting to get accepted into the Royal Academy of Fine Arts.
- 1st. Italian. ...
- 2nd. Indian. ...
- 3rd. Japanese. ...
- 4th. Mexican. ...
- 5th. Chinese. ...
- 6th. Turkish. ...
- 7th. Thai. ...
- 8th. French.
The White Horse Tavern is a National Historic Landmark being America's oldest restaurant, having served guests since 1673.