Are The Antiques At Cracker Barrel Genuine?

Cracker Barrel definitely has a certain vibe that you won't find at any other restaurant, especially not any other chain restaurant. The homey atmosphere, the rib-sticking food on the menu, the roaring fire in the fireplace during chillier months, and, of course, the antiques filling every square inch of the walls — it all adds up to the Cracker Barrel experience. But surely those antiques aren't real, are they? Surely that wouldn't be cost-effective for a nationwide restaurant to source and buy an average of a thousand pieces of decor per restaurant location.

But, it turns out, each and every piece of vintage decor you spot on a Cracker Barrel wall is 100% authentic. According to the brand's website, there are about 700,000 antiques spread out across the nearly 700 Cracker Barrel locations around the country, and all are completely real, never replicas. There are another 90,000 pieces of decor in the Cracker Barrel decor warehouse, ready and waiting to be shipped to existing and new restaurants.

How does Cracker Barrel get it done?

As you'd imagine, creating what's practically a history museum in each Cracker Barrel location is no easy task. That's why there are full-time designers on staff whose mission is to find, clean, catalog, and ship out decor as needed. According to the Cracker Barrel website, each restaurant features a few same key pieces of decor — the horseshoe over the front door and the traffic light over the restrooms, for example — but, otherwise, decor differs. In fact, the decor team makes an effort to source regional antiques for each location to include items that are reflective of that town's history or culture (such as fireworks memorabilia in a Rialto, California, restaurant as a nod to one of the biggest fireworks distributors on the planet, which is located in the city).

And one unique piece of decor you might spot in your local Cracker Barrel thanks to a recent TikTok challenge? A modern photo of a diner hidden among all the antique decor. The Cracker Barrel photo drop challenge requires diners to drop a framed photo of themselves in a Cracker Barrel restaurant, carefully tucking it away among all the other decor (some even photoshop their photos to look antique, so that they better blend in).

So, whether or not you're up for this type of challenge, the next time you're in Cracker Barrel, take a closer look at the decor around you. You might just learn something new about your local area or discover an interesting (and authentic!) historic artifact.