Jason’s Top 10 Picks for Chicken Takeout in the Twin Cities

Sandwiches, wings, strips, and roasted—we got ’em
Chicken Republic
Chicken Republic

Photo by Zapata Palms

Sandwiches

Chicken Republic’s BLT Chicken Sandwich

Variety Lovers: Choose your sandwich style and then choose fried or grilled. This delivery- and takeout-only “ghost kitchen” restaurant is inside the Uptown Red Cow. Fried chicken travels better, and the fried BLT is a winner with peppery, crispy bacon, a whoosh of garlic aioli, bright greens, and a tomato slice. Minneapolis, kenwoodfoodandbeverage.com

Fly Chix
Fly Chix

Provided

Fly Chix’s Buffalo Chicken Sandwich

Hot or not? There are lots of Tennessee Hot Chicken sandos in town right now (Fly Chix has that too), but not a ton of Buffalo chicken. There’s something about that smooth combo of vinegar and hot sauce playing against a nice, chunky blue cheese. Fly Chix lets you pick your heat level: mild, medium, or hot—and they’re not messing around. Minneapolis and Edina, fly-chix.com

Lake City Sandwiches
Lake City Sandwiches

Photo by Jae Shin Cross

Lake City Sandwiches’ Rosemary Roasted Chicken Sandwich

Focaccia Dreams: A chicken sandwich big enough to feed two, sitting between focaccia they make every day, the rosemary roasted pulled chicken sandwich is a delight. Such balance of textures and flavors: a briny olive tapenade, savory and soft goat cheese, with a hint of bitter crunch from arugula. Minneapolis, lakecitysandwiches.com

Mary Ellen’s Bistro

Courtesy Mary Ellen's Bistro

Mary Ellen’s Bistro’s Chicken Bacon Ranch Sandwich

Down on the ranch: This leans into the hoagie category of sandwich—two lightly breaded chicken tenders with a generous pour of Minnesota’s favorite condiment, ranch dressing. Despite my generally anti-ranch attitude, I confess to warm feelings for the sweetness of havarti cheese and the saltiness of bacon as paired with Mary Ellen’s buttermilk and herbaceous ranch deliciousness. Minneapolis, maryellensbistro.com

Union Hmong Kitchen
Union Hmong Kitchen

Lauren Cutshall

Union Hmong Kitchen’s Hilltribe Fried Chicken Sandwich

The pickled champ: Created in the summer of 2020, chef Yia Vang’s chicken sandwich is already a local icon. A wet batter creates an extremely crunchy, gluten-free crust on this extra large chicken breast. It gets messy with a daikon-and-carrot slaw, pickles, and hot sauce all on a homemade milk bun. Grab a couple napkins and enjoy. Minneapolis, unionkitchenmn.com

B.A.D. Wingz
B.A.D. Wingz

Photo by Zach Morin

Wings

B.A.D. Wingz

“Bold and Delicious” is an understatement when it comes to Gerard and Brittney Klass’s restaurant, which recently announced a move from Glam Doll Donuts to Graze Provisions & Libations. These beauties are full wings, not just a drummie and a flat. Traditional wings are flash-fried ‘til crisp or Southern fried with a light breading—but lively sauces are the main attraction. Do the Tripple OG, which is a perfect combo of ranch rub, lemon-pepper wet sauce, and the peppery Buffalo soldier sauce. Prefer dry rub? The King Kunta Coffee Rub matches brown sugar and Dogwood Coffee. Vegan, cauliflower, and boneless “wingz” round out the terrific options. Minneapolis, badwingz.com

The Jade Tigre
The Jade Tigre

Provided

The Jade Tigre

The menu at the Loop’s locations in Minneapolis and the Shops at West End has always had lots of Asian flavors sprinkled among the burgers, pizzas, and chicken fingers. Now the Jade Tigre, a “ghost kitchen” based at the Loop West End, explores those more deeply. The wings are excellent: super-crispy skin, in a sweet/savory honey garlic sauce. Juicy, crispy, travels well: the perfect food for takeout and delivery-only. St. Louis Park, jadetigre.com

Nashville Coop
Nashville Coop

Provided

Strips

Nashville Coop

It’s no accident that people have been lining up all 2020 to get their hands on Arif and Kamal Mohamed’s chicken strips. The hottest hot chicken in Minnesota, because Nashville Coop deep-fries thick, juicy strips in a well-seasoned batter and then shakes on a magic layer of seasoning. Pick your poison: “Minnesota Nice” is served as-is. “Coop” is advertised as mild, but the peppery kick is there. “Growlin’” is hot enough that I was sweating, and “Cluckin’ Hot” is probably a bad idea. Food truck and St. Paul, nashvillecoop.com

CHX
CHX

Provided

CHX

These hand-breaded strips with a serious dose of pepper are for chicken tender purists. No wet sauce or spice dust, just a perfect crunchy breaded strip with sauce that’s a slightly less sweet version of Raising Cane’s. Started by three friends—Shawn Edwards, Frederick Huballa, and Marques Johnson—CHX sells every meal with crinkle fries and a mini honey-buttermilk biscuit. Minneapolis, chxmsp.com

Pollo Pollo al Carbon
Pollo Pollo al Carbon

Photo by Neil Bertucci

Roasted

Pollo Pollo al Carbon

This pop-up could have Minnesota’s most flavorful chicken—thanks to chef Jorge Guzmán’s adobo marinade. It’s a combo of toasted chilies, charred vegetables, spices, herbs, and a secret ingredient. For now, Pollo Pollo sells whole chickens served broken down into legs, breasts, and thighs for more delicious Yucatan adobo flavor. With rice, beans, and heirloom tortillas sourced from new Mexican concept Nixta, the whole chicken easily fed my family of four. “Al carbon” means “over coals,” and you’ll find them at Guzmán’s restaurant, Petite León. Minneapolis, petiteleonmpls.com

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