National smoked chicken restaurant chain opens first Houston-area locale with soaring plans for more
Another chicken restaurant has set its sights on the Houston market. Chick N Max has opened its first location in Willis with several more on the way.
Founded in Wichita, Kansas in 2017, Chick N Max, which tags itself as the “Home of the Better Chicken Sandwich,” serves almond wood-smoked chicken, fried chicken tenders, and sides. Specific dishes include a chicken and waffle platter with popcorn chicken; a Nashville hot chicken sandwich made with fried chicken tenders that’s topped with Alabama white sauce, cole slaw, and pickles; and a power bowl that uses smoked chicken, quinoa, greens, cheese, and vegetables.
They can be paired with a range of sides — including french fries, cole slaw, mashed potatoes and gravy, deviled egg potato salad, and smoked white beans — along with 11 difference sauces that range from ranch and blue cheese to “Original Red Hot Sauce” and ghost pepper.
Located in Willis at 12312 I-45 North, the 2,500-square-foot restaurant seats 65. It’s the first of up to 25 locations that will be opened by franchisee Aaron Johnson, a restaurant industry veteran whose resume includes brands such as Bennigan's, Smashburger and Mod Pizza.
“Chick N Max has perfected a niche that truly differentiates itself from the competition," Johnson said in a statement. “Our made-from-scratch menu has something for everyone, with options for those looking to indulge to guests looking for a healthier take on traditional fast-casual chicken offerings.”
Next on Johnson’s agenda are locations in Fulshear and Magnolia. They’re part of Chick N Max’s plans to grow nationwide. The company plans to open up to five new locations per year, according to a release.
“There’s no shortage of chicken options in the Houston area to fill one’s craving, but nobody comes close to having our unique lineup of sandwiches and global array of flavors,” Johnson added. “I’m so excited to be bringing the ‘Home of the Better Chicken Sandwich’ to the area, and I can’t wait for locals to take their first bite of a Chick N Max sandwich. I promise you it won’t be their last.”
As Johnson notes, Houston has plenty of options for chicken sandwiches. In addition to fast food brands like Chick-fil-A and KFC, the city has recently welcomed Big Chicken, which is owned by NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal; Dave's Hot Chicken, a rapidly growing restaurant from California; and Daddy's Chicken Shack, a restaurant founded by former fine dining chef Pace Webb. State of Grace owner Ford Fry announced last week that he's bringing Little Rey, a Mexican-inspired chicken-focused taqueria, to the area near River Oaks District.
Of course, Houstonians looking for a more centrally-located, locally owned fried chicken sandwich have a number of options, including Mico's Hot Chicken, Relish Restaurant & Bar, and Common Bond.