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Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers -- Huh?

MSPD Nov 14, 2006 06:01 PM

Is it possible that this small chain has NEVER ONCE been mentioned on Chowhound.com??? (Or is it the usual crappy performance of the site's search function?)

According to their website www.raisingcanes.com , they have 50+ locations, most of which are in the Louisiana market (based in Baton Rouge). I see that there's one being built at a busy intersection in Apple Valley, MN.

I checked out the web site and thought I was having some kind of computer error when I clicked on the menu. After seeing they serve chicken fingers (surprise, surprise), I was repeatedly clicking the "reload" button waiting for the rest of the menu to unfreeze. There was none. You can order chicken fingers. Or...chicken fingers. Oh the kids menu does have a good selection of...er....chicken fingers. To be completely fair, they also serve crinkle cut (blech) fries, cole slaw and Texas toast. But for the most part, you order anywhere between 1 and 100 chicken fingers, fries, slaw and toast. Different marinades or flavors? Nope. Original or extra crispy? Uh uh. Spicy or mild or Italian seasoned or BBQ or curried chutney stuffed?? No. Variety of dipping sauces? Nope. One item. One recipe.

Their web site makes claims of marinating never-frozen chicken tenderloins, frying-to-order and the best dipping sauce ever known to man. All in an employement culture of fun, music and dancing (the employees that is). A google search produced a handful of business articles about the concept and a couple of ho-hum blog reviews claiming bland, yet positively tender chicken fingers.

But I just keep circling back to my original thought...a restaurant exclusively about CHICKEN FINGERS?!?! Frankly, I'm confused by this.

What's the deal Chowhounds?

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  1. s
    Sister Sue Nov 14, 2006 11:13 PM

    My guess is it has never been mentioned. There is not much worth mentioning. I took my children to the Raising Cain in Flowood, MS just outside of Jackson. We went ONCE! The chicken and sauce were bland. The crinkle cut fries were greasy. I did not see any employees dancing or having fun. There are other better options for fast food chicken --- Zaxby's, Chick-Fil-A, Popeye's.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Sister Sue
      Bad Sneakers Nov 15, 2006 12:17 AM

      Thanks for the report!

      As they seem to only have one kind of dipping sauce, what flavor is it?

    2. katp Nov 15, 2006 12:25 AM

      I went to LSU in Baton Rouge and this is college kid/drunk/hangover food. I gained nearly 15lbs. my freshmen year. i don't know how the franchises are, they were only in baton rouge when i had my bender. the sauce is sort of a spicy thousand island and now they offer the chicken fingers on a sandwich i believe. i always thought it was awesome but I stay away from it now that i have FINALLY lost my college weight.

      1. c
        Cadillac84 Dec 26, 2006 01:01 PM

        Well, thanks very much for this. Christmas Day; all stores closed; all restaurants closed. Wife and I have been sick and decided to just go to Picadilly instead of trying to cook. Wrong! Picadilly closed also!

        Hmmm-mm. Unopened bag of chicken fingers in the freezer; date OK; let's do that.

        Sauce? Nada.

        On a lark, I decide to search "dipping sauce" and got many hits; so I decided to add Guthries to the searcha and found several interesting threads. This one is a winner!

        If you like Guthrie's sauce, you will like this recipe. The paprika is important! Also, don't be bashful about the black pepper. We like coarse ground pepper most times, but this one needs regular [McCormick's] ground pepper. Isn't it amazing how expensive pepper is?

        Anyway, when he says cover surface and mix in, you should do just that! I covered, but just lightly and mixed it in -- three times. The final analysis when we used it? Could use a bit more pepper.

        Cover it with pepper; stir it in. Repeat. Repeat.

        I was not able to let it sit but for just over an hour. I think it will improve. I had plenty left over and I'll try it again tonight or tomorrow.

        To whatever extent this recipe misses being "Guthrie's," it need offer no apology.

        Great job! Many thanks for this one which goes into "the book."

        Season's Greetings,
        Chuck (Wetumpka, Alabama)

        1. Becca Porter Feb 10, 2007 08:23 PM

          I also went just one time when they opened in West Monroe, Louisiana. For serving just one item I was not impressed. I also really dislike mayo, so I didn't like the sauce either. I did see an interview with the owner. Seems like a nice guy, very inspiring, just not enough for me to return.

          1. j
            jim1126 Apr 1, 2007 01:26 PM

            The one time I ate at Raising Cane's in Houston it was absolutely vile. No redeeming qualities about their "food" whatsoever. The chicken fingers were WAY overcooked (in old oil) and the gravy was disgusting. Never again.

            1. donnaaries May 3, 2007 07:41 AM

              I'm not a big fan either. I'd rather have Popeye's any day. I thought the "secret sauce" was really bland and tasted too much like bottled thousand island dressing. The sweet tea was nauseating sweet...

              1. s
                stellyb Aug 2, 2007 03:46 PM

                I don't understand... Raising Cane's has over 50 locations (some in states other than Louisiana) and yet they only serve chicken fingers? They must be doing something right! I live in Lafayette, LA and all three locations here are ALWAYS packed! I have never had a bad experience and rate Raising Cane's way above any other quick-serve restaurant.

                Also, it isn't uncommon to take a product and make it better. Sure the same menu (mostly) is served at Raising Cane's, Zaxby's and Gutherie's. After doing my own research, it seems that what makes Raising Cane's better is the way they market their product. Their stores are inviting to everyone (especially the college crowd, both employees and customers alike) and promote a great atmosphere and a very cool culture.

                Lastly, it isn't uncommon to have more than one entity selling the same product (or product mix). Wal-Mart and K-Mart, for example, sell mostly the same thing. Its the marketing strategy and customer base that made Wal-Mart the largest retail store in the world.

                Its competition, people. It's what makes America diverse.

                5 Replies
                1. re: stellyb
                  MSPD Aug 8, 2007 10:31 AM

                  stellyb, I appreciate your opinion.

                  Since I made my original post, the Raising Cane's opened in Apple Valley. For background, and because you mention the demographics, Apple Valley is your stereotypical suburban USA. Raising Cane's is nestled at a busy intersection dominated by strip malls, a hotel and other fast food joints. I can see where the place MAY appeal to college kids, but there isn't an institution of higher learning anywhere around Apple Valley (I think they have started or are planning outlets at the U of M and in a couple of other suburbs).

                  I went with my wife and kids a few weeks after they opened. The staff and culture seemed a little more enthusiastic than the KFC next door and the McDonalds two doors down, but during the hour or so we were in there, there was pretty much nothing going on (the song and dance I read about in other news articles). It was a bunch of 16 year-olds ringing up orders and sliding trays across the counter.

                  That said, my focus is on the food. And, to be honest, the food was ho hum. The cole slaw, toast and fries were all institutional grade. As with the service, I can forgive lackluster side items if the star of the show is spectacular. It wasn't. The chicken was, as claimed, a nice quality juicy tenderloin but the coating was forgettable. I've heard no other than local critic gone national uber food show celebrity Andrew Zimmern rave about the sauce, which I found completely perplexing. I could walk across the street to the salad dressing aisle of the budget grocery store and pluck dozens of more complex, unique and/or compelling dipping sauce options off the shelf.

                  Bottom line: after one visit, I was already tired of the place.

                  Time will tell, but my prediction is that Raising Cane's won't have staying power here in Minneapolis/St. Paul (aside from an on-campus location at the U of M). stellyb, building on your analogy, I find it an interesting coincidence that the locations they are selecting are in the shadows of another highly marketed, once-exploding, now fizzling chain with a limited product line, Krispy Kreme. Like Krispy Kreme, after the buzz wears off, I suspect Cane's is hoping to capture catering/party orders as a significant percentage of their revenue. Neither place seems to have many cars in the lot whenever I drive by.

                  (Now....if only they would consider capitalizing on their southern roots and expanding their menu to include catfish, fried okra and stuff along those lines, they would be filling a badly needed niche around here)

                  1. re: MSPD
                    t
                    todd37 Dec 10, 2007 02:44 PM

                    I live here in the Minneapolis / St. Paul area...........actually not too far from this Apple Valley Cane's mentioned above. Shortly after this Cane's opened, I ordered lunch via the drive thru. Food was hot, which is a plus, but found their much hyped sauce was nothing special. I could tell the fingers were fresh chicken because they were juicy and had a wonderful texture. The toast and coleslaw was good as well. The crushed ice in the soda was a nice touch which you don't see from many other fast food operations. Side note..........some southern soda pop manufacturers actually use cane sugar as a sweetner in their sodas instead of cheaper corn syrup. From what I understand, cane suger sodas not only taste better than corn sweetened sodas, but it's healthier for your body. I doubt Cane's uses cane suger sweetened sodas because if they did, they would certainly advertise this. I think Cane's might be missing something here! To be fair, I have not seen any claims from Cane's about their sodas other than using crushed ice. The most interesting observation I have is regarding the size of Canes' chicken fingers. When I first ordered (within days of this new store opening), the fingers were quite big. Just had lunch at this same Cane's today and the fingers were about 1/3 the size. The only explanation I can think of is that Cane's opens their new locations with larger chicken fingers hoping that they'll impress new customers. If Cane's doesn't do this, they have significantly reduced the size of their fingers over the last year while keeping the prices the same. After seeing the smaller fingers they are now serving, can't say if I'll ever go back. Just my two cents!

                    1. re: todd37
                      MSPD Dec 11, 2007 10:31 AM

                      Howdy neighbor. (Burnsville here)

                      Interesting about the size of the chicken itself (the only thing I thought was noteworthy as I mention above).

                      The only significance Raising Cane's has to me anymore is whenever we drive by, my four year-old son says "Welcome to Raising Cane's. You can have chicken fingers or chicken fingers or chicken fingers or chicken fingers...." and so on until we say, "OK, that's enough".

                      And an update since my last post: The Apple Valley branch of Krispy Kreme was closed.

                      1. re: todd37
                        m
                        mthurston Feb 21, 2008 04:22 AM

                        I don't think 1/3 of the size is a fair assessment but Tyson provides the chicken to Raising Cane's and they reduced the size of there chicken from about 9oz and tender to 6-7oz while keeping the price the same. Cane's did not have much of and option.
                        Cane's does not use sodas with Cane syrup in them because it uses Coke as its provider who does not allow the use of Cane syrup in its products within the US.
                        Also to those skeptical about its future success it has been open about 12 years opened about 80 stores and to date has never closed one. If thats not success I don't know what is. And don't expect diversification of the menu cause canes has "One Love."

                        1. re: mthurston
                          d
                          dixaloo Apr 26, 2010 03:59 AM

                          My husband and I frequent the Apple Valley location. The place is always busy and today was packed! Sure it would be nice if they served something else, but its "one love" is the chicken and when we are in the mood for Canes chicken we drive the 15 miles to get there. Their sweet tea is what I always drink, as southerners are the only ones that can make it right.
                          Thanks for explaining why the fingers are smaller now, I was wondering that. Before it wasn't an issue because they would give you an extra piece in your combo to make up the difference, but the sauce portion used to be larger too, now it's 1.5 oz, but its the same everywhere. The portion is getting smaller, but the price remains the same.
                          Still love it though!

                  2. t
                    Ted in Central NJ Aug 5, 2007 08:40 AM

                    Fingers? I didn't think that chickens even had hands!

                    But seriously, this reminds me of that old SNL routine about The Scotch Tape Store whose owners couldn't figure out why they weren't successful. If the chain in question is successful with that business formula, then more power to them. However, it seems like a self-limiting market, IMHO.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Ted in Central NJ
                      Suzy Q Feb 21, 2008 05:37 AM

                      Ted, you made me laugh out loud with the ref to the Tape Store! There used to be a store in my old hometown called "Sock World" that we always likened to that as well. I believe Sock World lasted about 6 months.

                      Specialization can be a good thing if you either have the lock on a product, or simply do it better than anyone else. We don't have Canes in my area, but I wonder how their stores do in a town where there are similar options such as Zaxby's?

                      I can see why the concept is popular near college campuses - I bet the drive through's open late, too!

                    2. d
                      Diane in Bexley Feb 21, 2008 11:15 AM

                      OMG! Had no idea this was a chain with 50 outlets. They opened one up in a suburb of Columbus, OH next to the grocery store DH and I frequent. After grocery shopping one night after working all day, we thought we would check this place out as we had no frame of reference. We took one look at the menu and didn't stay. However, they chose to place their location in a very family friendly area chock full of fast food options, so they probably will do well.

                      Have been known to have Popeye's or Church's chicken once in a blue moon, but boneless chicken fingers aren't appealing. Too many local options for "real" Amish fried chicken.

                      1. j
                        jlawrence01 Feb 21, 2008 09:39 PM

                        Besides the Deep South, I have also seen them south of the Las Vegas Strip.

                        Honestly, I stopped in at one of the locations in Baton Rouge and the prices looked too high for what the food looked like so I left.

                        Raising Cain's cannot be any worse than Zaxby's which for me ranked as one of the bottom ten meals for 2007. Overcooked chicken strips and a salad of browned romaine at a fairly steep price.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jlawrence01
                          m
                          mikemelancholic May 16, 2009 01:23 PM

                          I've only heard of Raising Cane's today. I was going through Lexington, KY and my brother recommended it. It was very good. The crinkle-cut fries and the toast complimented the juicy chicken fingers nicely. The dipping sauce was also delicious.

                        2. s
                          Shadowcran May 17, 2009 03:50 PM

                          There's a Raising Cane's in Hattiesburg, MS. The chicken is always freshly cooked and the sauce is the best there is.

                          Believe it or not, there are 3 chicken finger restaurants here specializing in it. One is a Zaxby's, another is Willy T's. .....heck I think there's another one who's name I can't recall. The funny thing about Raising Cane's is that about 10 years ago, the place was a chicken finger restaurant of a different name. It's sauce was also the same.....odd, I know. It became a hot dog specialty place and that lasted about 3 or 4 years until it became a Raising Cane's.

                          EDIT: after reading more of the posts, I recalled the 4th chicken finger place in the city, Gutherie's.

                          I saw a note about including catfish, okra and other southern faire, but here in the south, places serving those are a dime a dozen. Why is catfish termed seafood? Yeah, I know there's a catfish in the oceans but that one isn't very edible. On the same note, I can truly understand how a niche can be filled in that area. Southern food can be hard to find the further north you go and there's some delicacies you would like. Perhaps a store specializing only in fried? If you ever get the chance, try a fried oreo. There's also, of course, fried chicken, and fried dill pickles, shrimp, tomatoes, sweet potatoes etc. The problem is that all these places in the south never even bother getting a second restaurant, much less a franchise.

                          A good example of a southern type deli would be McCallisters. This chain has been moving around some and may cross that mason/dixon line someday. However, it's another sandwich specialty shop.

                          Raising Cane's has all kind of pop memorabilia on the walls, which is quite common. Yes, they have an option to order 100 chicken tenders for parties or whatever. Until I read this post, I thought the place was local only.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Shadowcran
                            s
                            Sister Sue Jun 1, 2009 08:10 AM

                            I would say that McAllister's has already crossed the M - D line since they have locations in Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, and Wyoming.

                            1. re: Sister Sue
                              j
                              jeanmarieok Jun 1, 2009 01:07 PM

                              Our McAllister's just closed. Kind of sad, actually. They made an OK sandwich, but they were just never busy here.

                            2. re: Shadowcran
                              f
                              Fibber McGee Jun 1, 2009 09:13 AM

                              Would Schlotzky's be considered a southern-type deli?

                            3. a
                              aprilrose39 Jun 14, 2009 07:58 AM

                              We ate at Raising Canes in Vegas, bland chicken and greasy fries. I will say, however, that the sauce is good, but maybe thats because its the only thing with flavor they serve. I dont get the big idea of this place. I dont have to go again.

                              1. m
                                mojoeater Jul 22, 2009 04:29 AM

                                I really don't get the appeal. My coworkers are fast food addicts and eat there a couple times a week. They've managed to work Raising Cane's into the rotation for our monthly company lunches too. Everything is bland and greasy, including the bread. The sauce that everyone raves about has almost no flavor. We were given a bunch of two-for-one meal combo coupons and I just gave them away. I guess their sweet tea is good, but not worth the trip.

                                1. w
                                  wanderlustre Jul 26, 2009 04:50 PM

                                  My first experience with Raising Cane's was shortly after Hurricane Katrina in Harvey, Louisiana. I was there as a Red Cross volunteer and it was one of my first meals that didn't come out of a #10 can and it was delicious. Under normal circumstances I wouldn't have enjoyed it quite so much, but we loved it. Seemed like all the locals did, too.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: wanderlustre
                                    m
                                    mayla2326 Aug 1, 2010 08:23 AM

                                    Cajun's is great... love the fried okra.

                                  2. v
                                    vick_troy Jan 5, 2010 07:31 AM

                                    I live in south louisiana and have been to several Raising Canes. I do enjoy it sometimes but I do not go out of my way for it. Other than the sauce, there is not much special about Canes. It's tiny chicken tenders, regular crinkle cut fries, cole slaw and Texas Toast. Nothing homemade or unique about them. The tenders and fries are bland so you have to eat it with the sauce to add some spice or flavor. They brag about lemonade, which is pretty good, however, they charge an extra .30cents for it??? How expensive can it be to make lemonade?

                                    And for such small portions and limited menu items, it is extremely overpriced. I've had Zaxby's and it is okay also, but I much rather Bojangles for chicken tenders. Like I said before, if it wasn't for the sauce, I'd probably never eat there. I'f much rather Popeye's.

                                    There is one place that I love called Cajun's, in Mississippi. When we would vacation there we would eat at Cajun's at least 3-4 times. Great chicken and awesome breakfast buffet. Kinda reminds me of the movie "Coming to America" with eddie murphy where he worked at McDugal's who were copying McDonald's -- 'They have the golden arches and we have the golden arcs. Well Popeye's has famous fried chicken and Cajun's has fabulous fried chicken. Even had the same old orange bubble lettering. Of course popeyes has changed there look from that old look. I wish we could get a Cajuns down here.

                                    1. a
                                      aynrandgirl Mar 12, 2010 08:38 PM

                                      Their chicken is ok, if bland. A spicy cajun/creole style batter would be a big improvement. I like the sauce, though even more pepper would be good. A wickedly spicy sauce would be a good addition to the menu.

                                      The lemonade is very good, but overpriced and refills aren't free like the soft drinks. This pricing scheme says "don't order me", so I don't.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: aynrandgirl
                                        d
                                        down73 Mar 16, 2010 02:52 AM

                                        They just opened one of these down the street from me. I had to try it once. Having done that, I gotta say that I dont get it. I figured a chain that served only chicken fingers would have the most spectacular chicken fingers on the planet. They don't. They are no better than the chicken strips at the whataburger across the street. The dipping sauce tasted like a mix of thousand island and mayo with black pepper mixed in. The only thing that I truly enjoyed was the toast. Needless to say I won't be going back.

                                      2. c
                                        Cajunzoobie Jul 27, 2010 03:52 PM

                                        RAISING CANE'S is the best for fried chicken, just like CHIPOTLE is the best at burritos, and IN N OUT BURGER is with burgers.

                                        All three provide fresh quality, never-frozen ingredients. For that, you pay a little extra, but you also get clean restaurant environments with above-average wage employees who are excited to serve you. I cater to large groups and sport teams, and these folks never disappoint.

                                        The key to sucess that all three have found is -- KEEP THE MENU SIMPLE.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Cajunzoobie
                                          MSPD Jul 30, 2010 04:46 PM

                                          I think perhaps you're on to something. All three take fresh ingredients, charge you $1-2 over what they should, make them boring as hell and serve them with a side of way, way, way too much hype.

                                          Chipotle a little less so. I'll go there when I have to, but I have no need personally for In N Out or Raising Cane's at all. Yawn.

                                        2. L2k Aug 26, 2010 01:32 PM

                                          Went to the one Boston outpost today for a lateish (1:45) lunch. They had to cook a new batch of fingers, but they were delicious!

                                          1. Bob W Oct 1, 2010 08:41 AM

                                            I finally read this thread since people keep adding to it and I got curious, even though I've never heard of this chain.

                                            I don't get it. Yes, my six-year-old McNugget/chicken tender-loving twins might love it, but jeez, nothing else for the parents? Even McDonalds lets me order oatmeal all day long.

                                            1. m
                                              MNLisaB Nov 28, 2010 01:18 PM

                                              Three years later and I just tried Cane's for the very first time, a friend brought a pan over with fries. The fries were very forgettable -not a big frozen fry fan- but the fingers were tasty,moist and very tender, not in the least bit greasy. For fast food, this was pretty good, not sure I would go out of my way for these.

                                              1. m
                                                MNSunshine Dec 5, 2010 10:53 AM

                                                My husband absolutely LOVES Raising Cane's chicken fingers. I'm not usually much of a fan of chicken breast meat, but I do find their chicken fingers to be nice and moist. And I do love the dipping sauce. Fortunately, the Apple Valley, MN Raising Cane is midway between my mom's house and our house, so it's convenient to stop at.

                                                I have to chuckle at one memory. We were at my mom's this August and my oldest sister ordered pizzas for supper. I don't know who she got input from - every pizza was vegetarian. My husband was so glad that we could stop at Raising Cane for "real food" on the way home!

                                                1. p
                                                  pdxfoodie2 Feb 28, 2011 07:57 PM

                                                  I'd never heard of Gutheries before, but there's a restauraunt called Layne's in College Station, Texas that predates Canes and with the exact same limited menu- the only difference is they serve potato salad instead of coleslaw. The real secret to Cane's isn't the sauce, its the MSG. Both their brining solution and the flour-mix they use to batter the chicken contains MSG. I don't know if the same is true for Gutherie's or Layne's but after learning this I stopped eating Cane's.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: pdxfoodie2
                                                    a
                                                    aynrandgirl Feb 28, 2011 11:30 PM

                                                    What's wrong with MSG? It's tasty.

                                                    1. re: pdxfoodie2
                                                      r
                                                      roro1831 Mar 3, 2011 02:45 PM

                                                      I miss Freebird's in CS. I see they are expanding quite a bit, wish they would move to the east coast.

                                                    2. j
                                                      Jenny Ondioline Mar 17, 2011 03:40 PM

                                                      There's been a Raising Cane's near my house in Boston for quite some time (it replaced an absolutely terrible McDonalds), but I only got around to going there for lunch this afternoon, having gotten a hankering to go rooting through the used LPs at In Your Ear next door on this fine spring day.

                                                      Given the overall hate aimed at this place on these boards, I gotta say: I've had worse. I've had MUCH worse. I wouldn't make a special trip to eat here, and in fact, I may not eat here again for another two years, but the chicken was hot and tasty, the sauce and fries were entirely acceptable, the coleslaw and Texas toast were better than I expected, and the ice in my Dr Pepper was the soft pellety kind (similar to Sonic, and very hard to find up here where the cubes with the big hole predominate). Decent enough seating area, looked clean enough...I gotta say, I didn't hate it.

                                                      1. t
                                                        tabathacaudill Mar 20, 2011 09:37 AM

                                                        My husband and I go to the Raising Caine's in Lexington, KY and we LOVE it. The staff is very friendly and the food is always fresh and very good.

                                                        1. c
                                                          cornflakeblaked May 23, 2011 02:06 AM

                                                          I live in southeastern Louisiana. Trust me, you'll never be back to BK or McD for chicken tenders again. The sauce they have is an old cajun recipe that almost anyone over the age of 70 in Lafourche or Terrebonne parishes knows. They claim they're "fresh never frozen" and I can't say that I know that to be fact, but I can say I've never had a problem with the food. The fries aren't to die for, but they will come in handy when there's still cane sauce left over.

                                                          If anyone give it a shot. Try putting the sauce on the toast and then a chicken strip on that. Soooooo good.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: cornflakeblaked
                                                            s
                                                            steve0315 May 29, 2011 11:20 AM

                                                            Went there today, May 29, 2011. The chicken was moist, tender and flavorful. The rest...forgetable. No need for the bread, fries or coleslaw - they were all just blah.

                                                            I guess I don't 'get' the sauce. Not great, but not bad. Just blah.

                                                            Great chicken alone.

                                                          2. aphonik Jun 29, 2011 10:19 AM

                                                            Last year I randomly stumbled across the Boston University location after a late show at the Paradise next door. I fully intended to grab a Big Mac or something at what used to be a McDonald's but when I saw the "Raising Cane's" sign out front, I figured might as well give it a shot. I've basically been addicted to this place ever since. And the best thing is that they're open until midnight every night (except during summer break).

                                                            Sure they have only one thing on the menu, but they do that one thing exceptionally well: their chicken fingers are always moist and perfectly cooked. And I usually don't like crinkle-cut fries but for some reason theirs are awesome (especially when paired with the mysterious but delicious Cane's sauce). The texas toast may seem like a strange side for a fast food place but it works beautifully with the chicken. I suspect they must sprinkle crack in the chicken batter or something because otherwise I'm at a loss to explain my addiction to this place.

                                                            I also love that they give you packets of hot sauce, ketchup, and mayo and don't skimp when you ask for extra (which I always do, because I'm a condiment junkie). While I can't speak to the whole "culture of fun" thing, since I don't work there, I do know that all of the employees at the BU location seem surprisingly friendly for fast food workers. I've never had a bad experience going there, and I don't intend to stop now.

                                                            1. b
                                                              Bdmeg Jul 23, 2011 10:41 PM

                                                              I have eaten at the #1 (Haleyville, AL) and #2 (Auburn, AL) Guthries (as far as I know, the original chicken finger only place). The sauce is the only reason they have succeeded. In Auburn, the line would be out the door and in the parking lot on football Saturdays. Simple business model and college town friendly(lots of fast food joints in small area). I think Auburn had 4 just chicken finger places at one point in the early 90's. I even worked at one. Great comfort and hangover food: grease, starch and protien. Guthrie's is the Chicken Finger Sauce that I and my friends compare other sauces to. Mayo, Ketchup, garlic, woster, (paprika?) and pepper, with a healthy bit of MSG thrown in. I have been to one place that has improved on the sauce and it is Foosakley's in Mobile, Alabama. It is another Guthrie's/Cane's clone but they use cayenne ( I think) in the sauce and breading. Wonderful improvement. Cane's sauce is a good sub for Guthries, Zaxby's is an utter failure. Canes is mixed and portioned on site while Zaxby's is industrially packaged.
                                                              The Cane's in Laurel, MS has a good representation, tasty and close to the original. The chicken fingers are good...for fast food anyway. I was dissapointed with the Cane's in Hammond, Louisiana though. Substandard chicken and sauce.

                                                              1. countrycrafted Apr 26, 2012 06:21 AM

                                                                This sauce reminds me of Begium's french fry sauce.

                                                                1. w
                                                                  WishfulSpirit May 10, 2012 08:54 PM

                                                                  While it can seem strange in our variety-addicted culture, there is something to be said for picking one thing you are really, really good at and doing it supremely well. Raising Cain's fries are indeed blech, but the chicken fingers are the best you'll find anywhere.

                                                                  1. m
                                                                    mojoeater May 11, 2012 03:33 PM

                                                                    Had them again yesterday. Completely mediocre. Dipping sauce bland. Oh well.

                                                                    8 Replies
                                                                    1. re: mojoeater
                                                                      Boston_Otter May 12, 2012 07:59 AM

                                                                      The last time I had their dipping sauce, it was a ketchup/mayo/mustard sort of blend with a healthy dose of horseradish and cayenne. It was anything but bland.

                                                                      1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                        m
                                                                        mojoeater May 12, 2012 09:13 AM

                                                                        Didn't detect any horseradish. There might have been some cayenne. Most flavor came from mayo.

                                                                        1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                          a
                                                                          aynrandgirl May 12, 2012 07:04 PM

                                                                          Didn't notice any horseradish or cayenne. Plenty of black pepper, though.

                                                                          1. re: aynrandgirl
                                                                            Boston_Otter May 14, 2012 06:07 AM

                                                                            Sounds to me like their house sauce isn't as standardized as I'd assume it'd be, since everyone who tries it reports a completely different flavor of sauce.

                                                                            1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                              MSPD May 15, 2012 12:56 PM

                                                                              I love that this thread has stayed alive for more than 5 years!

                                                                              I'm going off of memory from 2007, but the sauce at the Apple Valley, MN location had no cayenne or horseradish flavor whatsoever. If it had, it may have been remotely interesting (it wasn't).

                                                                              I suppose I should go back to Raising Cane's and see if anything has changed. But it's so hard to peel myself away from Popeye's.....

                                                                              1. re: MSPD
                                                                                b
                                                                                Buckethandle May 20, 2012 03:20 PM

                                                                                I kind of wonder what kind of fast food people are accustomed to that Cane's chicken fingers are considered average or even sub-par. Which fast food joint or chain is doing it better? Being from La, the only thing I can say compared was Popeyes when it was predominantly just a La chain, some 20 or 25 years ago. Back when they had those crazy good hockey puck biscuits, which are now on probably their third (worse) iteration. There are sit down restaurants that would struggle to come up with a comparable chicken product to Cane's. That said, I probably top out at 4 visits a year because of the gut damage. It's terrific game day food, and if there's anything better than the toast dipped in the sauce, I don't know what is.

                                                                                FYI, the slaw, sauce, and toast are interchangeable in your order, eg extra toast instead of slaw is free. My order is Caniac extra sauce extra toast, no slaw and usually no drink.

                                                                                1. re: Buckethandle
                                                                                  twyst May 23, 2012 09:14 PM

                                                                                  "Being from La, the only thing I can say compared was Popeyes when it was predominantly just a La chain, some 20 or 25 years ago. Back when they had those crazy good hockey puck biscuits"

                                                                                  Ya popeyes used to be sooooooo good. I remember there always being a LONG line in the morning for their buttermilk biscuits. They were amazing!

                                                                                  As for all the people talking about whats in the dipping sauceat canes, its mayo, ketchup, garlic powder, worcestershire, paprika, and black pepper

                                                                                  1. re: Buckethandle
                                                                                    MSPD May 24, 2012 09:58 AM

                                                                                    "I kind of wonder what kind of fast food people are accustomed to that Cane's chicken fingers are considered average or even sub-par. Which fast food joint or chain is doing it better?"

                                                                                    Well, if that's your measuring stick, I guess they're brilliant. Hopefully you can tell that my posts have mostly been tongue-in-cheek (including the Popeyes comment). I'll still say that "it's just chain food chicken fingers" and boring sauce. Based on what we're getting here in MN, the toast dipped in the sauce is still boring thick toast dipped in boring sauce.

                                                                                    I don't know....my "terrific game day food" is still rib tips from the local BBQ joint or (if you're familiar with MSP) the wings from D-Spot.

                                                                        2. r
                                                                          rasputina May 23, 2012 09:11 PM

                                                                          Well not sure how the locations outside LA are, but I can vouch for the Baton Rouge ones. I really like them. In fact I miss them since we moved and hope they come here soon.

                                                                          1. g
                                                                            gitteface Sep 13, 2013 02:36 PM

                                                                            It was a project while the guy was in college at LSU. He got a teeny tiny place on Highland Ave and it's still open today. It became so popular the tiny drive thru would be packed down the street. SO he expanded. And did so well, he expanded some more. It's simple and tasty, limited choices to increase productivity and freshness. Honey mustard sauce is fucking amazing. Can still be done at home, Cane's isn't godly or anything, but it's ingenious and he's become a millionaire off a simple family recipe.

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: gitteface
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                                                                              gitteface Sep 13, 2013 02:39 PM

                                                                              Also, he gives holidays off- every holiday- so the kids that work for him can go home. They never serve french fries that bend, so no greasy mushy fries, and they never freeze their meat and it's always fried to order so it's always hot hot hot. Maybe it's not so true with the out of state ones bc he doesn't visit them as much, but here in LA it's always hot and fresh and the fries are always crispy. I guess the more you expand the less hold you have over the quality of food, but for us it's the only option for chicken other than popeyes. church's or others be damned.

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