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2021 Top 500 countdown: Restaurants ranked No. 500 – No. 451

Every year, Nation’s Restaurant News ranks the largest restaurant chains in the United States by domestic systemwide sales and other metrics, giving a detailed look at the biggest players in the industry. This year, we partnered with Datassential and its Firefly data platform to provide information for 500 chains — more than ever before.

2020, of course, was a year unlike any other. For the full Top 500, systemwide sales fell quite a bit. In general, bigger chains dominated throughout the year — but as you’ll see here, some smaller chains thrived as well.

In this gallery, get sales and growth data for restaurants ranked No. 500 to No. 451 in the United States by domestic systemwide sales. See restaurants including Kolache Factory, with 7.2% sales growth, and Blimpie, with a 28.3% sales decline.

Restaurant chains in this group saw year-over-year sales growth as high as 27%, that number belonging to Wow Cafe, an impressive feat for a brand that also saw a 15.1% drop in unit growth.

Here’s a look at the performance of the restaurant brands at the end of the Top 500.

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The Top 500 report is presented by Nation’s Restaurant News and Datassential, using insights from Datassential’s proprietary Firefly platform. Datassential’s Firefly is the ultimate strategic tool — No. 1 operator database, lead generator, customer marketing and intelligence platform, all-in-one. Learn more about getting complete access at

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