11 Fastest Growing Steakhouse Chains In The US

The 2020s have been a weird time, and it's probably always going to be remembered that way. It kicked off with a nightmare that came to life, and things changed in all kinds of ways when the pandemic hit. Countless restaurants went out of business during the COVID-19 lockdown, which put more pressure on an already competitive, cutthroat, and often oh-so-precarious industry. COVID changed the fine dining industry in some big ways, but if there's anything that can be said about Americans, it's that they're resilient. Fast forward a few years, and while the effects can still be felt, some places — including steakhouse chains — are bouncing back in big ways.

Many nationwide restaurant chains are making a massive comeback, and they aren't just returning to pre-COVID levels, they're looking ahead to growing in an era when people just want to get out of the house and get back to normal. That's great news for everyone, from diners looking forward to a date night that doesn't involve Netflix, to industry workers who are looking forward to getting some kind of stability back in their lives.

With that in mind, let's look at some of the fastest-growing steakhouse chains in the country. We took a look at not only projected growth for the coming years, but positive trends over the past few years, too. These restaurants are not only opening more locations, but they're hiring more staff, expanding menus, and in some cases, they're even offering entirely new services.

1. Texas Roadhouse

Back in 2022, Texas Roadhouse was making headlines. At the time of a Restaurant Business report, they had 607 locations, even though that had dropped from their previous high point. In prior years, their location numbers had hovered between 700 and 800, but they were estimating that they weren't just going to recover, but add around an additional 100 locations to a total of about 900. CEO Jerry Morgan explained that it was thanks to small markets: "We changed that number because we do see the upside, and the success in some of the smaller communities that we've been able to go in really allowed us to up that number."

Have they? In 2023, Brand Finance named them the fastest-growing restaurant brand, citing a whopping 56% increase in value over the course of the year, and that's pretty mind-blowing. At the end of the year, Morgan reported (via Nation's Restaurant News) that every location was bringing in about $1 million, and they were experiencing such a rush of traffic that it was forcing them to rethink their business strategy — specifically, investing in expansions and managing increased sales, and the kitchen's ability to handle more tickets.

On the heels of that report, 2024 seemed it was going to be carrying that momentum forward. High numbers led to a nearly 20% increase in their stocks, and along with that, it was also announced that they were planning on opening at least 30 new restaurants by the end of the year.

2. Outback Steakhouse

Adapting to new demands is the key to growing any business, and in 2022, Outback Steakhouse took some time to reevaluate what would make it more successful in the future. The findings included putting more emphasis on takeout and delivery options, while shrinking their ultimate size and, in turn, impacting their overhead. President Brett Patterson explained to CNN Business that post-COVID business had changed drastically: "The consumer isn't going back to how they behaved a few years ago."

Outback found itself facing an interesting dynamic. In 2023, they were looking at stagnant sales in North America, while at the same time, South American restaurants buoyed the company and carried more than 80% of their business internationally. Outback's popularity in Brazil is a huge part of the success in South America. At the same time, American locations saw fewer guests but higher sales. By early 2024, things had sort of stabilized, with traffic still down and revenue still up. 

That said, Outback's plans for 2024 remained wildly ambitious. In an early-year earnings call, CEO David Deno reported that they were going to be opening around 18 new locations in 2024 — triple the previous year — and although they were looking at closing underperforming locations, they were funneling more money into more remodels after completing more than 100 of those restaurant overhauls in 2023.

3. Fogo de Chão

Here's some really good news for adventurous foodies and steakhouse fans who like to make an event out of their fancy dinners out on the town: Brazilian steakhouse Fogo de Chão is set to make some massive changes in a really good way. In 2023, they reported some shockingly good numbers, including clocking the third year in a row that they'd grown by 15% and plans that were signed, sealed, and almost delivered in the opening of 22 new locations. Also trending in the right direction were the numbers of guests on a domestic and international front, leading them to look at expansion on a global scale. 

New restaurants were also going to get some pretty awesome features, feeding on the success of their elevated bar and craft cocktails, and expanded options for outside dining. What's better than Fogo de Chão? Fogo de Chão under the stars. The organization is so confident in its continued growth that they've announced that more locations are planned through 2025. Those openings in 2024 include locations in Brooklyn, Seattle, Orlando, and Miami, while promising that more locations will be announced: Specifically, they're eyeing more capital cities.

4. Black Angus Steakhouse

In late 2021, Black Angus Steakhouse appointed Deborah Shapiro as the new vice president of growth. She told FSR that her plan was pretty simple: "You need to find a way to grow sales, but we need to do it in a way that we don't alienate the current audience when we bring in the new audiences." That started with interviewing longtime customers and employees to see what was at the heart of the business, and it was almost a unanimous answer: family. With that in mind, the goal was clear: Keep menu items that were favorites, get similar decor in all restaurants while keeping what made each location special, and bring back popular events like live music and retro dishes.

As part of that growth, Black Angus recognized that there's a huge part of the population that doesn't want to go out to a sit-down dinner anymore, but is more than happy to invite quality offerings from their favorite restaurant into their home. In 2022, they opened their Black Angus Market to allow customers to buy steaks and seafood online, with pickup or direct shipping options. Then, 2024 saw them celebrating their 60th anniversary with a slew of specials, offers, and the addition of a brunch to their standard menu. The expansion plans were working: Black Angus clocked a 5% increase in their number of employees.

5. Sizzler

Sizzler is the stuff of fond Gen X and Xennial memories, of Friday nights with the family and the freedom your grade-school self experienced, heading to the salad bar to load up your plate with no lettuce and nothing but cheese, pickles, bacon bits, and croutons. (Just us?) Sizzler's had a rough time lately, and was one of the chains that declared bankruptcy during the strange, surreal time that was COVID-19. But here's the thing: It's back.

Sizzler came out of the other side of bankruptcy in 2023, and when they buckled down to get a handle on their customer base, they found that things hadn't really changed since the 1980s. Customers were still mainly families and groups — sports teams, clubs, classes, coworkers — who were looking for a good meal in a comfortable place. Along with that came a massive, chain-wide redesign that started in 2023 and was slated to be in progress or completed by April 2024. That's a massive investment, and it's being done with an eye toward nostalgia, too. While it's still too early to tell exactly how successful it's going to be in the long run, things look promising: The number of Sizzler employees is up by a respectable 11%.

6. LongHorn Steakhouse

Measuring the growth of a restaurant like LongHorn Steakhouse is a little more difficult. It's owned by Darden Restaurants, the same parent company that oversees Olive Garden, Bahama Breeze, and Yard House — to the tune of managing around 1,890 restaurants. In 2023, Darden announced that they were opening 100 new locations by the end of 2024, and while they didn't get into specific numbers, that included somewhere between 13 and 20 new LongHorn locations.

That might not sound like a lot, but Darden CFO Raj Vennam said (via CoStar) that caution was the name of the game, and not overextending themselves was key in a still up-in-the-air industry. He explained, "We do want to target as much growth as we can. Now, we're going to be disciplined in how we do that. We're being a little bit more selective, but still, we feel like we have opportunity [to open] quite a few [new locations]."

By 2024, the market was showing just how fickle it still was. While Olive Garden had historically been Darnden's flagship powerhouse, they actually reported a decline in sales. And LongHorn? They were still growing strong, and were the only section of Darden's portfolio that reported growing sales numbers.

7. The Capital Grille

It's always exciting to hear announcements of new restaurants opening in your neighborhood or nearest cities, and fans of Capital Grille have a lot to look forward to. Throughout 2023 and 2024, there were a slew of announcements that new Capital Grille locations were in the works and would be opening their doors in an attempt to break into new markets: Specifically, they were eyeing the suburbs. When they announced a Boston-area location in 2023, it wasn't in the city proper, but in the suburb of Dedham in a former PF Chang's location. Other locations included Ft. Myers, Florida, a $2.5 million project outside of Houston, a location in Salem, New Hampshire, and the takeover of another mall space in a Chicago-area mall. 

Expansions came amid a year of trending growth, with Guest XM ranking Capital Grille as among the top performers in sectors that included not only food but beverages, service, ambiance, value, and intent to return. And that last one? That's important. It's led to them averaging a revenue-per-employee of more than $9 million, and record sales in 2023.

8. STK

There's growth, and then there's record-breaking growth. In the last few years, it's the latter that STK — along with sister company, Kona Grill — has experienced, with reports sharing news of a shocking 50% increase in same-store sales between 2022 and 2019. And they did it in the face of extreme odds, with parent company (The ONE Group Hospitality) CEO Manny Hilario saying (via FSR), "All of this despite commodity headwinds, supply chain challenges, and labor shortages affecting the entire industry."

At the time, Hilario also noted that it was the biggest growth surge they'd ever seen. Fast forward to 2023, and they announced that a new Kona was going to be opening about every 4 to 6 weeks, while STK was making well above projected earnings. By the end of the year, STK was open in Salt Lake City and Charlotte, North Carolina, and plans were in the works for locations in Washington, D.C. and Aventura, Florida, along with at least one other city. Long-term? They had plans to raise their numbers from 23 locations globally in 2021 to somewhere in the neighborhood of 200.

9. Steak 48

Jeff Mastro is the founder of Steak 48, and he's staked (no pun intended) his reputation on his restaurants. He takes things very seriously, and that means his Steak 48 is one of the steakhouses that has vowed never to use frozen steaks. They're also leaps and bounds ahead of the rest of the pack when it comes to sheer luxury. How much luxury? When they opened their Charlotte location in 2020, it was an $8 million investment and led to the creation of 250 jobs. 

While exact revenue and growth numbers are difficult to pin down, it's safe to say that one of the best indicators of the success of this restaurant is that yes, they're opening new locations. It was still the early days of 2023 when they opened a Beverly Hills location, and if there's anything that says pricey, it's Beverly Hills. Yes, there's a raw bar, an in-house butcher, and a 3,000-bottle wine vault. That takes success, and they weren't done yet. 

In October of 2023, San Diego Magazine got a first look at their new Del Mar location, which also included a 3,000-bottle wine vault and a 12,500-square-foot footprint. Chief brand officer Oliver Badgio explained that they were getting ahead by setting the bar: "This was, as an industry, a little asleep at the wheel for a lot of years. With Steak 48, the DNA changed." (Always wondered about how to order wine at a restaurant? We've got you covered.)

10. Texas de Brazil

The success of Texas de Brazil predates the pandemic, and in 2018, it became the largest Brazilian-American steakhouse in the world. At the time, they had 57 locations worldwide. By making the most of services like DoorDash, they were actually able to weather the pandemic and increase their online sales by a whopping 58%. 

Fast forward to 2023, and Texas de Brazil had expanded to 63 locations and was worth around $460 million. In an interview with the Dallas Morning News, president Salim Asrawi told a pretty wild story of how — just 25 years prior — he'd been a 31-year-old entrepreneur with an idea that was so out there that he hadn't been able to get a bank loan to open his first restaurant. Instead, he'd appealed to a few family members who had believed in and bankrolled him. To say it paid off would be an understatement.

Asrawi explained his attitude throughout the pandemic: "Every challenge makes us stronger. What's the alternative? You've worked very hard to establish your business, you can't just do anything and fail. You have to be strong, adapt, stay positive, and be hopeful." And it worked: 2023 was a record-setting year that led to more locations opening in 2024 and the addition of VIP Dining Cards that would not only allow customers massive savings, but to support the Children's Cancer Fund in the process.

11. Ruth's Chris Steakhouse

Like many restaurants, Ruth's Chris Steakhouse had a rough few years that saw locations close. By 2022, things started to change, and this included plans to open seven new locations by the end of 2023. In addition, corporate was making it clear to struggling franchise owners that they were willing to talk about buying franchise locations back, and there was a precedent for it — they'd done it with nine restaurants in pre-pandemic years. It was a win-win: It allowed corporate to get into new locations, and it allowed franchise owners to get out. At the time of their early 2022 earnings call, they were cautious despite logging pretty consistent growth over the years, with 2020 the only year that saw a drastic dip in revenue. 

In 2023, Ruth's Chris got a big boost: They were bought by Darden for $715 million, in a deal that surprised pretty much everybody. The reason behind the acquisition was faith in the more upscale, expensive section of the restaurant market, as projections of a recession were forecasted to hit the casual dining sector, while upscale markets targeting a wealthier demographic were predicted to still find a stable customer base. Meanwhile, more locations have also been announced over the previous few years. Those included a location in Los Angeles, one in Worcester, and one in Melville, New York. Upscale steakhouses, it seems, are here to stay. Take a look at how we ranked some of your bucket list, upscale chain restaurants.