Skip navigation

The 12 restaurant brands with the highest quality food, according to consumers

Nation’s Restaurant News and Datassential present the 2021 Consumer Picks

Even amid a pandemic, food quality remains one of the most important attributes at a restaurant, especially when it comes to attracting and maintaining loyal consumers.

For this year’s Consumer Picks, a data-driven report on customer preference and restaurant brand strength, market research firm Datassential asked consumers how chains rate on food quality. In this gallery, meet the 12 chains with the highest percentage of consumers rating them “best in class” or “above average.”

These chains are split evenly between full service and limited service, showing that any segment can achieve the level of food quality consumers are looking for. Chick-fil-A ran away with the lead, reflecting the recent popularity of chicken, but overall there are more burger chains on the list than chicken.

Click through to see which chains consumers thought had food fit for takeout during the pandemic, plus, read our consumer playbook and find out more about how this report was compiled.

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.