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IndustryFast Casual
Founded1965; 56 years ago (1965)
FounderHal Guthrie
Number of locations
Area served
ProductsChicken fingers, French fries, Coleslaw, Texas toast, Signature Sauce

Guthrie's is a fast casual franchised restaurant chain headquartered in Auburn, Alabama, United States. The first restaurant was opened in Haleyville, in 1965 by Hal Guthrie. By 1978 the menu would consist primarily of chicken fingers, signature sauce, french fries, coleslaw and Texas toast, the first to largely center its menu on chicken fingers. Today the chain has grown to include 36 stores across 6 states with plans to expand further.


Guthrie's in Trenton, Georgia

The original Guthrie's was opened in Haleyville, Alabama, in 1965 by Hal Guthrie.[1] The restaurant originally served a full menu of Southern food, but in 1978 it was changed to focus primarily on chicken fingers.[1] This switch resulted in Guthrie's becoming the first restaurant to have a menu largely centered on chicken fingers.[2] By 1982, a second location would open in Auburn and a third in Athens, Georgia by 1984.[1] By 1997, eight locations were open and all were under the ownership of the Guthrie family.[1]

The initial stores were constructed adjacent to major universities: Auburn University, University of Georgia, University of Alabama, University of Florida and Florida State University. Expansion outside of college towns did not commence until the opening of the Gardendale location in 1997.[3] By 2005, the 26 restaurants in the chain were all under the ownership of the Guthrie family.[4] In April 2005 it was announced that the company was looking to expand further out of Alabama into Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi and that they were also looking to franchise the brand for the first time.[4] By 2015 the restaurant expanded into Kentucky.

With the COVID-19 pandemic that began in mid-March 2020, most restaurants had to abandon eat-in dining. Drive-thru, take-away & pick-up service are the customer's options upon ordering.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Williams, Roy L. (July 30, 1997). "Guthrie's not just college food now". The Birmingham News.
  2. ^ Evans, Chuck (July 21, 1997). "Move over Colonel, Guthrie's is coming". The Birmingham News.
  3. ^ Staff Reporters (August 13, 1997). "Guthrie's brings its chicken to town". The Birmingham News.
  4. ^ a b Williams, Roy L. (April 8, 2005). "Guthrie's eyes Southeast expansion that would include first franchises". The Birmingham News.

External links[edit]