Craving something nostalgic and classic? A fried chicken sandwich never gets old. With crispy chicken, soft, toasted bread and a variety of sauces, this meal can take you back to a simpler time. While you could grab a quick bite from a national fast food chain, nothing beats the taste of a delicious, fresh-cooked chicken sandwich from one of these local bars or restaurants.
624½ Rutledge Ave (Downtown)
Open 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun.-Thurs., 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat.
Stop by this downtown neighborhood restaurant and choose from three different chicken cutlet sandwich options: classic, parmesan and buffalo. The classic setup incorporates Duke’s mayo, shredded lettuce and tomato, while the chicken parm is slathered in its tomato-based “grandma sauce” and mozzarella. If you’re looking for big, bold flavors, the buffalo is the way to go with traditional buffalo sauce, iceberg lettuce and blue cheese dressing. The parmesan is a fan-favorite, according to owner Marc Hudacsko. And, if your vegetarian friend tags along, Berkeley’s has veggie versions of these sammies made with eggplant.
Big Gun Burger Shop & Bar
137 Calhoun St. (Downtown)
Open daily 12 p.m.-2 a.m.
Big Gun Burger Shop may have “burger” in its name, but this local joint can knock out a delicious chicken sandwich too. Along with unique burgers, like the Towering Inferno made with beef patties, pulled pork, barbecue sauce, queso fresco and habanero slaw, Big Gun offers a chicken sandwich with pimiento cheese, slaw and pickles.
23 Ann St. (Downtown)
Open Sun.-Thurs. 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 8 a.m.-4 p.m., 9 p.m.-2 a.m.
Downtown’s sandwich shop Bodega focuses on breakfast and lunch sammies with a handful of “hot” sandwiches like the classic New York chopped cheese and the Gropfather sandwich, named after Uptown Hospitality Group executive chef Alec Gropman. This chicken cutlet sandwich is topped with nduja (a spreadable pork sausage), mozzarella, pesto and provolone cheese for a mix of spicy, sweet and fresh.
1922 Savannah Hwy. (West Ashley)
Open daily 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
Boxcar Betty’s is the perfect place to satisfy a chicken sandwich craving. Customers can customize the fried-to-order sandwiches with a range of toppings and sauces. Or, opt for a classic sandwich like the Boxcar with pimiento cheese, house-made peach slaw, pickles and spicy mayo. Vegetarians can also indulge in Boxcar Betty’s offerings with pimiento-stuffed portobello mushrooms.
Church and Union
32B N. Market St. (Downtown)
Open Mon.-Fri. 11-12 a.m., Sat.-Sun. 10-12 a.m.
Grab a crunchy, handheld bite in an old church across the street from historic Market Street at Church and Union. Though you can dig into classic fork-and-knife plates like steak, pork loin or cacio e pepe, you can also enjoy the restaurant’s handheld chicken sandwich with barbecue spice, cabbage slaw and Alabama white sauce.
18 Vendue Range (Downtown)
Open Mon.-Fri. 11-2 a.m., Sat.-Sun. 12 p.m.-2 a.m.
Just a short walk from Waterfront Park, The Griffon’s quirky decor, including signed one dollar bills covering the walls, is reason enough to visit this place. But, you can’t skip out on the food either. While fish and chips are a staple menu item, you can also grab a grilled or fried chicken sandwich covered in barbecue, buffalo or teriyaki sauce and topped with lettuce, tomato, onion, mustard and mayo.
Hero Doughnuts and Buns
145 Calhoun St. (Downtown)
After a day of walking around downtown, stop into Hero for doughnuts, an ice cold drink and a super crunch chicken sandwich, served plain or buffalo style. The plain super crunch is spread with house-made pepper jam and “crack sauce” for a spicy tang and paired with pickles for an acidic bite. The buffalo version of the super crunch replaces the pepper jam and crack sauce, with buffalo sauce and ranch for a creamy and spicy balance topped with iceberg lettuce.
Moe’s Crosstown Tavern
714 Rutledge Ave. (Downtown)
Open daily 11-2 a.m.
Moe’s offers a traditional sandwich with its Tim’s Chicken Parm, available fried or grilled, with marinara, provolone and parmesan on a toasted hoagie. Or opt for a different kind of “sandwich” with a chicken wrap including fried chicken strips, cheddar, honey mustard, lettuce and tomato.
474 King St. (Downtown)
Open Wed.-Sat. 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
The Rarebit offers a handful of fried foods on its menu, from country fried steak to fried catfish and of course, a fried chicken sandwich. This sandwich is a classic chicken cutlet topped with pickles and served on a potato bun, accompanied by sides of honey mustard and barbecue sauce. Bonus: Pair it with one of Rarebit’s delicious, ice-cold Moscow Mules.
The Royal American
970 Morrison Drive (Downtown)
Open daily 11-2 a.m.
The Royal American is one of Charleston’s beloved music venues, but also serves up delicious food. The menu is loaded with fan-favorites like the Magic Wings (flavored to taste like Cool Ranch Doritos, but better) and the Pharmacy Burger (a double cheeseburger with onions, Frenchonaise and relish), but the chicken cutlet is one you can’t miss. It incorporates a thin slice of chicken breast perfectly fried to a golden brown for a crispy, juicy bite. The best part? It can be served as a sandwich or topped with gravy and eaten with a fork and knife.
Triangle Char & Bar
828 Savannah Hwy.
Open Mon.-Thurs. 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 11-12 a.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-11 p.m.
Triangle Char & Bar is a family friendly neighborhood restaurant with a cozy vibe and delicious food. Menu highlights include a selection of grass-fed burgers like the Hot Sh*t, a blackened burger with jalapeno-bacon jam, an over-easy egg and pepper jack cheese. But for a classic Southern dish, look no further than The Coop, a fried chicken sandwich slathered with pimiento cheese and topped with red onions, lettuce and tomato.
32 Ann St. (Downtown)
@tullys_ on Instagram
Tully’s is famous for slinging smash burgers out of the Music Farm window, but do not miss out on its chicken cutlet sandwich. The cutlet is sliced thin, deep fried and topped with shredded lettuce, mayo and tomato. Like the burgers, this sandwich is straightforward and incredibly delicious.
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