Where to eat on January 1 if you didn't make plans. 

By Morgan Goldberg
December 19, 2018
The Washington Post/Getty Images

Whether your house is walking distance from a Waffle House or an Olive Garden is a quick drive away, you likely live near a chain restaurant that serves familiar, consistent meals. And we feel that there is no better day to eat a big chain restaurant meal than on New Year’s Day. Why not celebrate the beginning of 2019 by ridding yourself of a hangover?

So, we rounded up all the national chains open on January 1 for your casual-dining pleasure.

Applebee’s

The grill and bar chain will be open on New Year’s Day with its normal menu of dishes like boneless chicken wings and spinach and artichoke dip.

Bartaco

The taco restaurant with coastal New England decor will be serving customers at every location on New Year’s Day.

Buca di Beppo

Chicken parmigiana, meatballs, pasta, and more are on offer at the Italian chain that opens at 11 a.m. on January 1.

Chick-Fil-A

If nuggets and waffle fries are on your New Year’s Day radar, most locations of the chicken chain will be open from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Chili’s

The Tex-Mex bar and grill will be serving baby back ribs, sirloins, fajitas, and more on January 1.

Cracker Barrel

The American country-style store chain is open 364 days a year, including New Year’s Day.

Del Frisco’s Grille

New Year’s Day brunch at the modern American bar and grill chain includes dishes like lemon ricotta pancakes, crabcake Benedict, and Southern fried chicken and waffle.

Denny’s

Locations nationwide of the diner-style restaurant are open 24/7, including New Year’s Day.

Fogo de Chão

Most locations of the Brazilian steakhouse will be open on New Year’s Day, with hours varying by location.

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria

The coal brick-oven pizzeria chain will be open for normal hours on January 1, serving signature pies made with handmade mozzarella cheese, dough, and signature “secret recipe” pizza sauce along with seasonal additions like Chicken Alla Vodka Pizza, Cranberry Winter Mule, and Reeses’s Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake.

HomeTown Buffet

The American buffet chain will be offering its normal menu of favorites like macaroni and cheese, fried chicken, baked fish, and more during normal hours on New Year’s Day.

IHOP

Many locations of the pancake house will be flipping on New Year’s Day, with hours varying by location.

Morton’s The Steakhouse

The Chicago-founded steakhouse chain is taking reservations for New Year’s Day.

Old Country Buffet

The American buffet chain will be offering its normal menu of favorites like macaroni and cheese, fried chicken, baked fish, and more during normal hours on New Year’s Day.

Olive Garden

Unlimited breadsticks are an option on New Year’s Day, as Olive Garden locations will be open and operating.

Romano’s Macaroni Grill

The Italian-American restaurant chain will be running service on New Year’s Day, with hours varying by location.

Ruth’s Chris Steak House

The steakhouse chain will be serving customers on New Year’s Day with options like Ruth’s Holiday Surf and Turf that includes two cold-water lobster tails alongside a choice of aged USDA Prime ribeye steak or filet.

Ryan’s

The American buffet chain will be offering its normal menu of favorites like macaroni and cheese, fried chicken, baked fish, and more during normal hours on New Year’s Day.

Smith & Wollensky

The national steakhouse is taking reservations for New Year’s Day. It’ll be serving its fall/winter dinner menu along with seasonal specials, holiday “cellar steals” by the bottle, and featured holiday wines by the glass.

Waffle House

Every Waffle House is open 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, including New Year’s Day. Hangover waffles, anyone?

Advertisement