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Hattie B's Hot Chicken wins Best in Tennessee award

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Readers vote this Nashville original as serving the best hot chicken in the state

While evidence exists to suggest that spicy fried chicken had been served among Tennessee’s African American communities for generations, the dish as it exists today has an origin story dating back to the Great Depression. Thorton Prince has a reputation as a ladies’ man, and in an act of revenge, his scorned girlfriend served him fried chicken – his favorite – loaded up with peppers and spices. The prank didn’t have the desired effect; instead Prince loved it and decided to open Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack. Over the past several years, this quintessential Nashville dish has skyrocketed in popularity across the nation. But who makes it best?

  • Hattie B's Hot Chicken
    Nashville & Memphis

    Hattie B’s has a loyal following of hot chicken lovers who come for the sandwiches and plates. Heat levels vary from no-heat Southern to Shut the Cluck Up!!! with a serious burn factor.
    Photo courtesy of Joseph Woodley / Hattie B's Hot Chicken

  • Party Fowl
    Multiple Locations

    Diners come from around the state and the country for the hot chicken and cold drinks at Party Fowl. Executive Chef Bart Pickens has fashioned a menu of several hot chicken dishes with heat levels ranging from mild to Poultrygeist.
    Photo courtesy of Party Fowl

  • Prince's Hot Chicken
    Nashville

    Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack is a Nashville original, where father of Nashville hot chicken Thorton Prince launched a nationwide obsession. The restaurant remains in the Prince family, and diners can get their chicken with heat levels from mild to XXX Hot.
    Photo courtesy of AW Photography / Flickr

  • Myrtle's Chicken + Beer
    Knoxville

    Diners at Myrtle’s Chicken + Beer in Knoxville have two heat options to choose from: Damn Good (medium heat) or Hot Damn (extra hot).
    Photo courtesy of Myrtle's Chicken + Beer

  • Slow Burn Hot Chicken
    Madison

    Slow Burn Hot Chicken is known for their Nashville-style hot chicken and fish, served as pieces, wings or tenders. Choose your level of heat, from Singe on the mild end to fiery Inferno.
    Photo courtesy of Slow Burn Hot Chicken / Facebook

  • Jackie's Dream
    Knoxville

    Jackie’s Dream is a local favorite for soul food in Knoxville. Hot chicken lovers can order fried chicken by the piece with buffalo sauce for an extra kick.
    Photo courtesy of Jackie's Dream / Facebook

  • 400 Degrees
    Nashville

    Nashville native Aqui Hines, owner of 400 Degrees, grew up eating Prince’s Hot Chicken. Today she owns her own place where diners come for the crispy, spicy hot fried chicken served alongside creamy coleslaw and sweet Southern baked beans.
    Photo courtesy of 400 Degrees / Facebook

  • Deezie's Hot Chicken
    Murfreesboro

    The hot chicken from Deezie's in Murfreesboro is available in a range of heat levels, from mild original recipe to X Hot. The crispy, juicy chicken is also available in Cajun, lemon pepper and sweet heat flavors.
    Photo courtesy of Deezie's Hot Chicken

  • Big Shake's Hot Chicken & Fish
    Franklin

    Diners can choose their level of heat at Big Shake's Hot Chicken & Fish in Franklin, ranging from the heat-free original recipe to the sweat-inducing Executioner made from the world’s hottest peppers. This classic Tennessee dish also comes as chicken and waffles, tacos or a salad.
    Photo courtesy of Big Shake's Hot Chicken & Fish / Facebook

  • Dino's
    Nashville

    Located in historic East Nashville, Dino’s is the city’s oldest dive bar and a favorite among locals and visitors alike for its comfort foods. Among the options is Joe’s hot chicken, served with pickles, a side of tartar and a slice of white bread.
    Photo courtesy of Andrea Behrends / Dino's

The top 10 winners in the category Best Hot Chicken in Tennessee are as follows:

  1. Hattie B's Hot Chicken - Nashville & Memphis
  2. Party Fowl - Multiple Locations
  3. Prince's Hot Chicken - Nashville
  4. Myrtle's Chicken + Beer - Knoxville
  5. Slow Burn Hot Chicken - Madison
  6. Jackie's Dream - Knoxville
  7. 400 Degrees - Nashville
  8. Deezie's Hot Chicken - Murfreesboro
  9. Big Shake's Hot Chicken & Fish - Franklin
  10. Dino's - Nashville

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote.

Congratulations to all these winning restaurants!

License the 10Best Readers' Choice Award Logo

 

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Jason Frye

Jason Frye

Jason Frye

Margaret Littman

Margaret Littman

Margaret Littman

Kristin Luna

Kristin Luna

Kristin Luna

Shawanda Mason-Moore

Shawanda Mason-Moore

Shawanda Mason-Moore

Sally Walker Davies

Sally Walker Davies

Sally Walker Davies

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