The Best Chain Coffee Shops in America
Coffee shops are the perfect place to grab a quick breakfast, enjoy an afternoon pick-me-up, or get some work done.
If you’re looking for a latte or iced coffee to get you going in the morning, a hot tea to wind down in the evening, or a freshly baked pastry as a treat, your local chain coffee shop is a perfect place to fuel yourself.
Luckily, there are many coffee chains in the US that serve incredible coffee drinks, pastries, and other hot or cold drinks.
In this article, we’ve rounded up the best coffee chains in America, so you can enjoy a delicious cup of coffee no matter where you are.
McDonald’s is best known as a fast food restaurant, but their McCafé menu section also serves coffee and pastries.
There are over 13,000 McDonald’s locations in the United States, making it one of the most widely available chain coffee shops in the country.
Although McDonald’s has been around since 1940, the first McCafé location didn’t open until 1993 in Melbourne, Australia.
Through McDonald’s McCafé menu, you can enjoy a variety of hot and iced coffee drinks and pastries.
If you just need a plain old cup of coffee, McDonald’s offers Premium Roast Coffee, made from 100% Arabica beans, and comes in small, medium, and large sizes.
For a sweet treat, you might be interested in McDonald’s Caramel Frappe, a milkshake-like coffee drink blended with rich caramel flavor, whipped topping, and caramel drizzle.
The McDonald’s Caramel Frappe comes in three sizes: small, medium, and large.
If you’re also looking for something to eat in addition to your coffee, McCafé locations sell apple pies, blueberry muffins, and cinnamon rolls with cream cheese icing.
18. Coffee Beanery
Coffee Beanery is a Michigan-based coffee chain specializing in flavored and specialty coffees.
There are over 20 Coffee Beanery locations in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Guam.
The first Coffee Beanery location was opened by JoAnne and Julius Shaw in Michigan in 1976.
The menu at Coffee Beanery offers a variety of coffee drinks, espresso drinks, blended drinks, and teas, as well as a variety of breakfast and lunch sandwiches.
For those who love a basic hot or iced coffee, Coffee Beanery serves them both in three sizes: small, medium, and large.
Coffee Beanery also serves an array of classic and flavored espresso drinks, including espresso shots, lattes, Americanos, cappuccinos, mochas, and caramel lattes.
Coffee Beanery offers its own version of an iced frappe called the Frappalatte, which comes in flavors like coffee, caramel, mocha, and white mocha.
Finally, if you’re hungry, Coffee Beanery serves a variety of delicious sandwiches, including the Chicken Bacon Pita, the Grown Up Grilled Cheese, the Turkey Cucumber Club, and the Turkey Muenster Melt.
17. Biggby Coffee
Biggby Coffee is another Michigan-based coffee chain specializing in coffee and tea drinks.
There are almost 300 Biggby Coffee locations in Florida, Kentucky, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
The first Biggby Coffee location was opened by Bob Fish and Mary Roszel in East Lansing, Michigan, in 1995.
The Biggby Coffee menu features a variety of coffees, espressos, teas, hot chocolates, frozen drinks, energy drinks, and food items.
The “Traditions” section of the Biggby Coffee menu features basic coffee drinks like brewed coffee, iced coffee, and cold brew.
There are almost 60 flavors available under the “Latte” section of the Biggby Coffee menu.
Some popular flavors include the Black Forest Latte, made with caramel, chocolate, and blackberry; the German Mocha Latte, made with caramel, chocolate, hazelnut, and coconut; and the Sugar and Spice Latte, made with caramel, cinnamon, and hazelnut.
Some of the unique menu items available at Biggby Coffee are the Biggby Blast Energy Drinks, which are made-to-order, fruit-flavored energy drinks.
Biggby Blast Energy Drinks come in flavors like Scuba (blue raspberry and strawberry popping boba), Green Lagoon (green apple), Electric Dragon (dragon fruit and lemon), and Blood Moon (mango and blood orange).
Finally, Biggby Coffee offers “bragels,” or bagel sandwiches, which come in varieties like Turkey Havarti, Sausage and Egg, Ham and Cheese, and Bacon, Egg, and Cheese.
16. Gloria Jean’s Coffees
Gloria Jean’s Coffees is an American-Australian coffee chain specializing in handcrafted coffee drinks.
There are almost 50 Gloria Jean’s locations in California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin.
The first Gloria Jean’s location was opened by Gloria Jean Kvetko in Chicago, Illinois, in 1979.
Gloria Jean’s menu offers a variety of American and European-style coffee drinks, hot and cold.
Gloria Jean’s American classics include the mocha caramel latte, cafe mocha, white chocolate mocha, vanilla caramel latte, and a Madagascar vanilla latte.
The European classics include a latte, cappuccino, Americano, and espresso.
Gloria Jean’s also offers a version of an iced frappe called “chillers,” which comes in coffee, fruit, and decaffeinated flavors.
Their coffee chillers come in flavors like chocolate caramel turtle, ultimate cookie, ultimate chocolate, mocha voltage, Madagascar vanilla caramel, and white chocolate caramel cookie.
Gloria Jean’s fruit chillers flavors include wildberry, banana, raspberry, mango, and strawberry.
Finally, Gloria Jean’s decaffeinated chillers come in flavors like cookie crumble, vanilla caramel avalanche, chocolate avalanche, and chocolate caramel avalanche.
15. Caribou Coffee
Caribou Coffee is a Minnesota-based coffee chain specializing in handcrafted coffee drinks, pastries, and other breakfast food items.
There are almost 500 Caribou Coffee locations in Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
The first Caribou Coffee location was opened by John and Kim Puckett in Edina, Minnesota, in 1992.
The Caribou Coffee menu serves a variety of hot and iced coffee drinks, teas, and fruit drinks, as well as a wide array of bagels, pastries, and breakfast sandwiches.
For those looking for a basic coffee, Caribou Coffee offers hot press coffee, cold press iced coffee, and a regularly rotating Coffee of the Day, brewed every hour to ensure maximum freshness.
If you’re craving a sweet treat, one of the most popular signature drinks at Caribou Coffee is the Caramel High Rise.
It is made with espresso, steamed milk, caramel, whipped cream, and a caramel drizzle on top and is also available in an iced version.
If you prefer tea, Caribou Coffee offers a variety of teas, including mango black iced tea, chamomile mint, organic black, earl grey, turmeric ginger, hot cinnamon spice, raspberry hibiscus green tea, and orange buzz tea.
Finally, if you’re looking for breakfast with your coffee or tea, Caribou Coffee serves an array of breakfast sandwiches.
Their breakfast sandwiches include Turkey Bacon, Egg, and Muenster Sandwich, Ham, Egg, and Swiss Croissant, Chicken Chorizo Burrito, and Beyond Meat Sausage, Egg, and Mozzarella Sandwich for those who don’t eat meat.
14. PJ’s Coffee
PJ’s Coffee is a New Orleans-based coffee chain specializing in New Orleans-inspired roasts and flavors.
There are over 90 PJ’s Coffee locations in Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.
The first PJ’s Coffee location was opened by Phyllis Jordan in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1978.
PJ’s current Roastmaster is named Felton Jones.
He selects top-quality Arabica coffee beans from around the world, including Sumatra, Ethiopia, Colombia, and Papua New Guinea, and carefully roasts them in small batches.
The PJ’s Coffee menu features a wide variety of coffee drinks, espresso drinks, blended frozen drinks, and teas, as well as a variety of pastries, breakfast sandwiches, and lunch sandwiches.
The blend for PJ’s Coffee’s hot coffee changes daily and varies by location but is always selected and roasted by Roastmaster Felton Jones.
If you prefer an espresso drink, PJ’s Coffee offers classics like lattes, cappuccinos, espresso shots, and Americanos, as well as fun variations like their Mocha Cappuccino and White Chocolate Latte.
PJ’s Coffee also offers frozen blended drinks, which they call “Granitas” or “Velvet Ices.”
The Granitas come in flavors like coffee, mocha, and caramel, while their Velvet Ices include mocha, vanilla, chai, green tea, and protein.
If you’re hungry, one of the unique food offerings from PJ’s Coffee is their beignets, an iconic New Orleans pastry similar to a donut, topped with a generous dusting of powdered sugar.
13. The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf
The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf is a California-based coffee chain specializing in coffee and tea drinks.
There are over 200 The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf locations, most of which are on the West Coast.
The first Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf location was opened by Herb Hyman in southern California in 1963.
The chain prides itself on being the first chain coffee shop to offer ice-blended coffee drinks, starting in their Westwood, California store in 1987.
The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf menu offers a variety of coffee drinks, espresso drinks, ice-blended beverages, and teas.
If you’re a cold brew fan, you might want to check out their cold brew flavors, which include regular cold brew, the Vanilla Bean Cold Brew Latte, the Caramel Cold Brew Latte, the Midnight Mocha Cold Brew Latte, and the Vietnamese Cold Brew.
If you prefer a hot espresso drink, they offer some delicious options, including classic espresso shots, cappuccinos, Americanos, flat whites, and lattes.
The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf is most famous for its ice-blended drinks, which come in flavors like vanilla, mocha, caramel, white chocolate, hazelnut, cookie butter, dark chocolate, and cookies and cream.
Finally, The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf serves a wide array of hot and iced teas, including Chai, English Breakfast, Earl Grey, Pomegranate Blueberry, Genmaicha Green, Lemon Chamomile, African Sunrise Iced Tea, Swedish Berries Iced Tea, and Iced Tea Lemonade.
12. Tim Hortons
Tim Hortons is a Canadian coffee and donut chain best known for its coffee, donuts, and other breakfast items.
There are over 600 Tim Hortons locations in the US, plus a ton more in Canada.
The first Tim Hortons location was opened by famous Canadian hockey player Tim Horton in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, in 1964.
At that first location, Tim Hortons sold a cup of coffee and a donut for only twenty cents!
The Tim Hortons menu features a variety of hot and iced coffee drinks, donuts, and other breakfast foods.
Tim Hortons serves an array of coffee drinks, including regular coffee, dark roast coffee, lattes, cappuccinos, Americanos, and flavored options like vanilla latte, caramel latte, mocha latte, and vanilla almond latte.
One of the most popular coffee drinks from Tim Hortons is the Iced Capp, which is their version of a frozen blended coffee drink.
The Iced Capp comes in flavors like caramel, mocha, and Oreo.
Finally, you’ll definitely want to pick up one of Tim Hortons’ donuts or Timbits, which is their version of a donut hole, to enjoy along with your coffee.
11. Dutch Bros
Dutch Bros is an Oregon-based drive-through coffee chain.
There are over 700 Dutch Bros locations in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Washington.
The first Dutch Bros location was just a pushcart that sold coffee.
It was founded by Dane and Travis Boersma in Grants Pass, Oregon, in 1992.
The Dutch Bros menu features a variety of hot and iced coffee drinks, teas, smoothies, lemonades, and energy drinks.
The “Dutch Classics” section of the Dutch Bros menu features delicious, flavored coffees like the Kicker, an Irish cream breve, the Caramelizer, a caramel mocha, the Cocomo, a coconut mocha, and the Annihilator, a chocolate macadamia nut breve.
Dutch Bros also has its own version of a frozen blended coffee called the Dutch Freeze.
The Dutch Freeze comes in flavors like coconut, vanilla, caramel, caramel mocha, and caramel and chocolate.
Finally, Dutch Bros’ energy drink is called the “Dutch Bros Rebel Energy Drink.”
It comes in flavors like Electric Berry (lime and blue raspberry), Aftershock (strawberry, blackberry, raspberry, and lime), Double Rainbro (strawberry, peach, and coconut), and Shark Attack (blue raspberry, coconut, and lime with pomegranate drizzle).
10. Caffe Nero
Caffè Nero is an Italian-inspired European coffee chain specializing in espresso.
There are over 30 Caffe Nero locations in Connecticut and Massachusetts.
The first Caffè Nero location was opened by Gerry Ford in London, England, in 1997.
Although Caffè Nero is not Italian in origin, it aims to bring the sophistication and quality of Italian coffee to coffee shops worldwide.
The Caffè Nero menu features a variety of classic, high-quality espresso drinks, iced drinks, and many pastries and other breakfast foods.
If you love espresso, you’ll want to try Caffè Nero’s espressos, which include shots, lattes, cappuccinos, flat whites, espressos con panna, cortados, mochas, white chocolate mochas, and the Caramelatte, which is similar to a caramel macchiato.
Caffè Nero also serves its own version of a frozen blended coffee, the frappe latte, which can be made in mocha and caramel flavors.
If you’re hungry for something to eat, Caffè Nero serves a variety of breakfast sandwiches, including a vegan breakfast roll, bacon breakfast roll, roasted tomato breakfast roll, smoked salmon avocado toast, and ham and cheese croissant.
Finally, for a sweet treat, Caffè Nero sells delicious pastries, including pain au raisin, butter croissants, almond croissants, cinnamon buns, pain au chocolat, and banana tea bread.
9. Stumptown Coffee Roasters
Stumptown Coffee Roasters is a Portland-based coffee chain specializing in third-wave coffee.
There are 9 Stumptown Coffee Roasters locations in California, New York, and Oregon.
The first Stumptown Coffee Roasters location was opened by Duane Sorenson in Portland, Oregon, in 1999.
Stumptown Coffee pioneered the Direct Trade green coffee sourcing method, based on the principles of paying higher prices tied to higher quality, forming relationships with coffee growers, and maintaining these relationships to create collaborative partnerships.
They serve a variety of hot coffees, espresso drinks, iced coffees, teas, and pastries.
All of Stumptown Coffee Roasters’ espressos are made from their Hair Bender roast, a sweet and balanced roast with notes of citrus, dark chocolate, and raisin.
The chain is most famous for its draft cold brew, also available as a draft nitro cold brew with nitrogen infused for a smoother, creamier finish.
If you don’t live near a Stumptown Coffee Roasters location, do not worry!
Canned versions of their draft cold brew are available from retailers like Target, Whole Foods, Kroger, and Meijer.
Finally, Stumptown Coffee Roasters cafes serve pastries, breakfast items, and sandwiches sourced from local bakeries, so you’ll find different treats at each location.
8. Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea
Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea is a Chicago-based coffee chain specializing in third-wave coffee and tea.
There are 14 Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea locations in California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, and Texas.
The first Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea location was opened by Doug Zell and Emily Mange in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois, in 1995.
Since 1995, Intelligentsia has become one of the nation’s largest suppliers of high-quality, sustainably sourced third-wave coffee.
Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea offers a variety of hot and iced coffees, espresso drinks, teas, and pastries.
If you’re just looking for a basic yet delicious hot coffee, you’ll want to try their Barista’s Choice, which rotates each day through offerings of Direct Trade coffee.
If you love lattes, Intelligentsia offers cool options like the curry caramel latte or the Avena Latte, made with oat milk, ginger, cinnamon, vanilla, orange peel, and a sprinkle of cayenne on top.
One of the unique drinks at Intelligentsia is the Black Cat Fizz, made with their Black Cat classic espresso, Fever Tree tonic water, and Fee Brothers orange bitters.
Finally, each Intelligentsia location offers a unique array of local pastries, sandwiches, and other food items.
7. La Colombe
La Colombe is a Philadelphia-based coffee chain also a founding member of the third-wave coffee movement.
There are over 30 La Colombe locations in California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Washington DC.
The first La Colombe location was opened by Todd Carmichael and JP Iberti in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1994.
“La Colombe” is French for “the dove.” The name “La Colombe” was chosen to represent international peace and culture.
The La Colombe menu features a variety of hot and iced coffees, espresso drinks, teas, and an array of pastries and sandwiches.
La Colombe offers two roasts: Workshop, a light-medium roast, and Cornerstone, a dark-medium roast.
If you prefer espresso, they have many great options, including espressos, macchiatos, cortados, Americanos, cappuccinos, lattes, and mochas.
The most iconic menu item from La Colombe is the draft latte, a cold-pressed espresso and frothed milk iced coffee drink that gets served on tap.
6. Dunn Brothers Coffee
Dunn Brothers Coffee is a Minnesota-based coffee chain specializing in fair trade, sustainably grown coffee.
There are nearly 60 Dunn Brothers Coffee locations in Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, and Wisconsin.
The first Dunn Brothers Coffee location was opened by brothers Ed and Dan Dunn in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1987.
All of Dunn Brothers Coffee’s coffee beans are roasted in small batches. At any given point, no coffee served at Dunn Brothers Coffee is more than five days old.
The Dunn Brothers Coffee menu offers a variety of hot and iced coffees, espresso drinks, cold brews, and teas.
Dunn Brothers offers an array of classic espresso drinks, like lattes, mochas, cappuccinos, Americanos, and straight espresso shots.
If you love cold brew, you’ll want to try their Nirvanas, which combine cold brew with flavors like vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon roll, and creamy coconut.
Dunn Brothers Coffee also serves its own version of frozen blended coffee, which comes in coffee, mocha, and caramel flavors.
Finally, if you’re feeling hungry, they serve many great sandwiches, wraps, salads, and naan pizzas.
5. Colectivo Coffee
Colectivo Coffee is a Wisconsin-based coffee chain specializing in green, sustainable coffee, tea, and food.
There are 20 Colectivo Coffee locations in Illinois and Wisconsin.
The first Colectivo Coffee location was opened by Paul Miller, Lincoln Fowler, and Ward Fowler in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, under the name “Alterra Coffee Roasters” in 1994.
The founders would personally fly to Guatemala to form direct sourcing relationships with coffee growers.
The Colectivo Coffee menu features a variety of hot and iced coffees, espresso drinks, teas, and smoothies.
They serve an array of classic espresso drinks, including lattes, cappuccinos, cortados, flat whites, macchiatos, and espresso shots.
Colectivo Coffee also prides itself on its Session Cold Brew, which features sweet citrus, berry, and chocolate taffy notes.
If you like smoothies, you’ll want to sample some of Colectivo’s delicious flavors, including Acai Power, Berry Booster, Cold Brew Power PB Banana, Mango Peach Ginger, and Power Super Green.
Finally, Colectivo Coffee sources all of its pastries and food items from Troubadour Bakery, which makes incredible croissants, muffins, scones, cookies, cinnamon rolls, bagels, and more.
4. Philz Coffee
Philz Coffee is a Bay Area-based coffee chain specializing in third-wave pour-over coffee.
There are nearly 70 Philz Coffee locations in California, Illinois, Virginia, and Washington DC.
The first Philz Coffee location was opened by Phil Jaber in the Mission District area of San Francisco, California, in 2003.
Before Phil Jaber opened Philz Coffee, he spent 25 years as a convenience store owner, experimenting with different coffee roasting and brewing methods in his free time.
The Philz Coffee menu offers a variety of pour-over coffees, teas, baked goods, and other breakfast items.
They offer over a dozen different pour-over coffee blends featuring notes as diverse as cardamom, chocolate, spice, cherry, toffee, caramel, maple, hazelnut, brown sugar, honey, and citrus.
Philz Coffee also serves a variety of delicious Featured Creations, like the Iced Mint Mojito, Iced Gingersnap, Iced Coffee Rose, and Mocha Tesora.
Finally, each Philz Coffee location serves a variety of baked goods and breakfast items sourced from local bakeries.
3. Peet’s Coffee & Tea
Peet’s Coffee & Tea is a Bay Area-based coffee chain specializing in in-store brewed coffee and tea.
There are over 200 Peet’s Coffee & Tea locations in 20 states.
The first Peet’s Coffee & Tea location was opened by Alfred Peet in Berkeley, California, in 1966.
Alfred Peet’s parents owned and operated a wholesale coffee bean grindery in the Netherlands when he was growing up.
At first, Peet’s Coffee & Tea didn’t even sell brewed coffee, just coffee beans, tea leaves, and spices.
Nowadays, Peet’s Coffee & Tea menu features a variety of hot and iced coffees, teas, baked goods, and hot breakfast items.
Peet’s offers many great espresso drinks, including various latte flavors, cappuccino, mocha, and macchiato.
If you love iced coffee, you might want to try the Black Tie, made with layers of sweetened condensed milk, cold brew, chicory-infused simple syrup, and half and half.
Finally, Peet’s also serves a variety of blended frozen drinks in flavors like mocha, caramel, chocolate and caramel, coffee, espresso, matcha, chai, vanilla, and chocolate.
Dunkin’ is one of the largest and most popular coffee and donut chains in the United States, with over 8,500 locations in 41 states.
The first Dunkin’ location was opened by Bill Rosenberg in Quincy, Massachusetts, in 1948.
Dunkin’ was originally called “Open Kettle.” Its name wasn’t changed to “Dunkin’ Donuts” until 1950.
In 2018, Dunkin’ began to drop the “Donuts” and just go by “Dunkin’.”
Dunkin’s classic hot and iced coffees are each made with 100% Arabica coffee beans.
Dunkin’ also serves an array of frozen drinks, including frozen coffee, frozen chocolate, frozen matcha, and Coolattas, which are caffeine-free frozen drinks that come in flavors like blue raspberry, strawberry, and vanilla bean.
Finally, be sure to order one of their donuts or Munchkins to enjoy with your coffee!
Starbucks is the most famous and ubiquitous coffee chain, with over 15,000 locations in the United States.
The first Starbucks location was opened by Jerry Baldwin, Zev Siegl, and Gordon Bowker in Pike Place Market in Seattle, Washington, in 1971.
That first location is still one of the most popular tourist attractions in Seattle to this day!
One of the unique Starbucks coffees is the shaken iced espresso, a strong, frothy iced coffee with flavors like brown sugar oat milk, toasted vanilla oat milk, and chocolate almond milk.
Another of Starbucks’ most famous drinks is the Frappuccino, a frozen blended coffee that comes in flavors like the mocha cookie crumble, white chocolate mocha, caramel ribbon crunch, caffe vanilla, caramel, mocha, and java chip.
If you prefer a fruity drink, you might want to try one of Starbucks’ refreshers, which are caffeinated lemonade-style drinks that come in flavors like strawberry acai, mango dragonfruit, and pineapple passionfruit.
Finally, if you’re hungry, Starbucks offers excellent breakfast sandwiches, including the Impossible sandwich.
These coffee chains on our list span every region of the United States, so no matter where you are, there is likely a coffee shop near you.
Whether you’re searching for sustainably sourced, fair trade coffee beans, frozen blended coffee, or even an iced tea or lemonade, these chain coffee shops are sure to have what you’re looking for.
So the next time you’re on the hunt for a place to relax and catch up with friends or quickly grab a coffee and a snack, head to one of these coffee shops. Happy sipping!