Food & Recipes

Turkey Disaster Averted — All the Fast Food Restaurants Open on Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving of course has its traditional fare — turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes — but let’s be honest: Things don’t always go according to plan. Food gets burned, ingredients get forgotten, and — real talk here — families wind up getting into fights and skipping the holiday all together. (Thanks, Aunt Trish, for leaving the family without yams — again.)

Just like you’re a better person for knowing Walmart’s holiday hours, this is crucial info, people! Be prepared for anything with this handy list of fast food restaurants that are open on Thanksgiving this year (don’t forget to call ahead though, as store hours vary!) Because whether you’re celebrating alone or with a house full of people, it’s good to know where you can grab a burger. You know, just in case.


OK, hitting up a drive-thru on Thanksgiving might not seem, you know, festive, but knowing that Wendy’s and all of her French fry and Frosty glory are open on Thanksgiving is peace of mind if there ever was one. Plus, Thanksgiving is nothing if not a gluttonous holiday, so go ahead, enjoy a late-night Frosty while you’re splayed out on the couch after everyone’s gone home.

Burger King

Have it your way on Thanksgiving by eating your turkey and a Whopper. OK, fine, that might be a little much. But hey, burgers and fries certainly will work in a pinch if a catastrophe happens, like your oven breaking.

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King of the booth.

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Leave it to Mickey D’s to stay open on Thanksgiving. Seriously, do they ever close? And hey, if you want to keep things thematic, order a piece of apple pie with whatever you get. Just like grandma used to make?


If you want to “fancy” things up on your Thanksgiving fast food excursion, head on over to an International House of Pancakes, where you can actually get sit-down service. But please, after you devour a plate of bacon, eggs, and pancakes, tip your server generously. It’s Thanksgiving, for crying out loud.

White Castle

Not only are most White Castles open on Thanksgiving Day, many actually offer Thanksgiving(ish) menu options. In 2015, the burger chain started selling three varieties of turkey sliders, which give diners a small taste of the holiday in a white mini cardboard box.

If you find yourself at White Castle on Thanksgiving, see if your location has the turkey dinner slider, which tops a Butterball turkey burger with sweet potato waffle fries and cranberry sauce; the cranberry turkey slider, which is the same thing minus the waffle fries; or the bistro turkey slider, which features “tangy bistro sauce.” What a time to be alive.

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Jack in the Box

Maybe you’re not even feeling turkey and stuffing on Thanksgiving? Maybe you want fries? Or a taco? Or a weird smily-faced guy in a suit? Then, head on over to Jack in the Box, which is usually open on the holiday.

Papa John’s

If leaving the house is just too daunting — or depressing — of a task for you on Thanksgiving, order in. Most Papa John’s are open and delivering hot pizza on Thanksgiving. But again, tip your delivery person handsomely.


Add a little Mexican flair to your all-American holiday by enjoying a burrito and the best chips and salsa money can buy on Thanksgiving. Most Qdoba locations are open on Thanksgiving, but definitely call ahead. The last thing you need is a hankering for rice and beans and no way to satiate it.


As with every other holiday, Starbucks is open on Thanksgiving — and most of them are open early at that. Whether you’re heading there to fuel up before a busy day of cooking, or just need a late afternoon pick-me-up, Starbucks has got your pumpkin spice-loving back.


If you’re feeling more “bar and grill” than “political discussions with the family at the dinner table,” most — not all! — Applebee’s are open on Thanksgiving. Call ahead and you’ll probably get the best seat in the house.


What’s better than plate after plate of your dad’s famous stuffing? Um, endless appetizers! Dig into some potato skins, chicken fingers, and mozzarella sticks on Thanksgiving, as most Friday’s will be up and running.

Dunkin’ Donuts

Whether you need a pick-me-up before kicking off Turkey Day festivities, or a sweet treat after your turkey-induced nap, Dunkin Donuts will be open to serve. We’ve already got our eye on the pumpkin donut.

This article originally appeared on our sister site, Life & Style.

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