The Only Places In The US You Won't Be Able To Find A Cracker Barrel

It's almost impossible to take a road trip across the United States and not run into a Cracker Barrel Old Country Store. Known simply as Cracker Barrel, the chain restaurant has built a reputation on having both quality comfort food and excellent customer service in a family-friendly atmosphere. Diners know they can rely on the chain to deliver the same tasty dishes at various locations, no matter where they are. Cracker Barrels are often strategically located near major highways and interstates, making them a popular stop for travelers. Unfortunately, there are five states in the country where you won't find a Cracker Barrel– Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Vermont, and Wyoming.

Cracker Barrel may not have opened in Alaska or Hawaii because they aren't part of the contiguous United States, but there is no clear explanation as to why the Southern-style restaurant and country store gift shop combo hasn't been opened in these five states. If you want something similar to Cracker Barrel in Alaska, TripAdvisor reviews say that the Noisy Goose Cafe in Palmer is similar, and Anna Miller's in Oahu has been called the "Hawaiian version of Cracker Barrel." The Vermont Country Deli in Brattleboro is a good option for down-home comfort food when you are too far north to find a Cracker Barrel. 

Cracker Barrel is still expanding

Cracker Barrel was founded in Lebanon, Tennessee. The first Cracker Barrel location opened on September 19, 1969, as a small restaurant and store combination that aimed to provide a friendly, welcoming atmosphere to people traveling along major roadways in the U.S. The goal was for travelers to find comfort in consistency they could count on. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Cracker Barrel expanded to other states, opening locations primarily in the southeastern U.S. Over the last four decades, it just kept growing — except to the previously mentioned five states.

It's important to keep in mind, though, that Cracker Barrel, like most companies, is continuously expanding and adding new locations. So the presence of Cracker Barrel in those states may change at any time. In fact, a news station, KHQ, reported in 2018 that Spokane, Washington would be the state's first location for a Cracker Barrel, but that so far has not happened. There are still plenty of Cracker Barrel locations for you to visit throughout the U.S., though.

The places you're most likely to find a Cracker Barrel

As of May 2023, there were 661 Cracker Barrel restaurants in 564 cities across 45 states. While you may assume that Tennessee has the most Cracker Barrel locations, since it was founded there, that honor actually belongs to Florida. There are a total of 60 Cracker Barrel locations in the Sunshine State. There are 54 in Texas and 51 in Tennessee. San Antonio, Texas has the most Cracker Barrel locations in one city, with five in operation there.

And there's plenty of space in these restaurants, too. According to Cracker Barrel's website, each of their stores is approximately 10,000 square feet, sitting on around 2 acres of land each. They can seat 177 to 207 people each, which is good considering that the restaurant serves 230 million guests each year. Cracker Barrel has more than 1,600 billboards scattered across the country, alerting people to their various locations, which is probably part of the reason why 40% of their business comes from travelers.