Origin Stories Of 14 Fast-Food Restaurants

Fast-food joints are household names. But their origin stories remain a mystery to most of us. Read on for the beginnings of 14 fast-food restaurants that might just inspire you to take a loan from your parents and start your own chain.


Little Caesars Little Caesar's 1959 PIZZA TREAT CHICKEN FISH SHRIMP CARRY OUTS DEL/VERY CRACKED COM Mike and Marian llitch spent their life savings opening Little Caesar's Pizza Treat. Their original menu included chicken, fish, shrimp, and hot dogs.

Source: Mashed


Chipotle 1993 Chipolle CINEMA GRAPHICS THE ULTIMATE POSTER SHOP Edill Steve Ells was working as a chef when he opened a burrito stand as a low-risk investment to support his dream of a full-scale restaurant. He got a loan of $80,000 from his dad.

Source: CNBC


Wendy's 1969 Wenuys ithimi t WE'D OLD TASHIONED O HAMBURGERS FASHIONED CRACKEDCO After working for years at KFC, Dave Thomas wanted a mascot for the hamburger chain he was opening. His daughter Wendy's name worked the best SO he took a photo and the business began.

Source: The Square Deal


Dunkin' 1948 Dankur orut 1950 ESTABLISHED OMICIAL AMKI' LOCATION CRACKED.COM William Rosenberg opened a donut shop originally called Open Kettle. Donuts were five cents while coffee was 10 cents.

Source: Dunkin Donuts


Pizza Hut 1958 Brothers Frank and Dan Carney borrowed $600 from their mom to open a pizzeria. They came up with the name Pizza Hut because their sign only had room for 8 letters.

Source: NPR


Dairy Queen 1940 DAIR4 DUEEA CRACKEDCO In 1938, to test a new soft serve technology, Sherb Noble of Sherb's ran a deal of all-you-can-eat ice cream for 10 cents. In 1940, Noble opened a Dairy Queen, that specialized in soft-serve.

Source: Noble Stores


Chick-fil-A 1946 MAL sroTsyivANIA Chick-fil-A Sauce recipe invented here In 1946, Samuel Truett Cathy opened Dwarf Grill near a Ford auto plant, whose hungry employees used the rolls as buns, inspiring the signature chicken sandwich.

Source: Small Business


Starbucks 1971 The three founders were college friends who were instructed how to roast by Peet's Coffee and Tea founder. The company's name was picked out from Moby Dick... it almost was named Pequod.

Source: The Guardian


Burger King 1953 CRACKED COM Inspired by McDonald's, the founders bought the rights to the ta-Broiler, a special grill, which inspired their resturaunt's name Insta-Burger King. It was franchised the following year.

Source: Small Business


Subway 1965 *Petes SUBWAY R MIOE Fred DeLuca was 17-years-old when his family friend Dr. Peter Buck gave him a $1000 loan to open a sandwich shop to help fund his college. It was originally called Pete's Submarines.

Source: Entrepreneur


KFC 1952 CRACKED CON After varied careers, Colonel Harland Sanders began selling food out of his gas station in 1930. It wasn't until the invention of the pressure cooker in 1939 where he perfected his quickly fried chicken with 11 herbs and spices. In 1952, he franchised the business.

Source: The New Yorker


Taco Bell 1962 ACO DE 5a- CRACKED COM Glen Bell tried to copy the success of McDonald's with Bell's Hamburgers. In 1951, he added tacos to the menu after learning about them from a Mexican resturaunt across the street. Tacos were the biggest success, and Bell went on to create Taco

Source: KNet


White Castle 1921 Castle 5 hite Castle 5 eler Established i HAMBURGERS in 921 Buy em by the Sack CASTL White Castle was the first American fast-food chain. Hamburgers were 5 cents and quickly served to exact specifications, which would later be copied by other chains.

Source: Mashed


McDonald's 1940 HAMBURGERS McDonald's CRACKED Beginning as McDonald's Barbeque, the owners quickly realized hamburgers were outselling the BBQ at the drive-in restaurant.

Source: Smithsonian Magazine