My only personal rule when it comes to dining out is never ever Applebee's. Applebee's is trash.
Huge Chili's guy. Not a bad thing to say about the place. Fast service, consistent food and that cookie skillet are always excellent. Chicken crispers are OK too. Really just an ideal dining experience in all regards. Chilis to go is also a big draw. All around winner right here.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and IHOP allows you to get it all day long. With so many variations of pancakes, omelet's, eggs and even a full dinner menu, there is not much bad about the place. Especially a great late night dining destination. Often patronized by the elderly for their early bird special, there's sure to never be a dull moment at your local IHOP.
3. Texas Roadhouse
A great place for dinner. Get a nice cut of prime rib, some mashed potatoes and of course, those rolls. Sometimes it is very busy and takes a while for the food to come out but in the meantime they have peanuts. They seem to really emphasize quality and portions and therefore there is always a good value. Some have tried to copy their business model, but Texas Roadhouse does it best.
4. Waffle House
Southern Icon, waffle house. Place doesn't close. Ever. Thats admirable in and of itself. Menu is basic and food is nothing special, but there is just something about the environment and the way it feels like everyone is welcome there is excellent. Price is right too. Restaurants are usually dirty enough that you notice, but not dirty enough to really care.
Best service in the fast food industry hands down. When you walk in to a Chick-Fil-A, you are treated with utmost respect. Not to mention in terms of food quality and consistency, they take the cake. Only true downfalls are that it is relatively expensive and they are not open on Sundays. Killer milkshakes too.
Consistent. You walk in, you know what you're getting. The food is really not that special but the draw is that it is at least moderately healthy and always dank. Watch out for that E. Coli though, it'll getcha.
7. Auntie Annes
You ever been to a mall? There's probably an Auntie Anne's there. It's the pretzel place that is always there, smelling good. They have variations of pretzels such as pretzel dogs and pretzel nuggets and lemonade to wash it all down. A great snack. Reminds me of simpler times.
8. Dunkin' Donuts (Dunkin")
New England favorite. There are 3 within a mile of my house at home. Not really anything special about the place. It seems like more of a cultural thing. Still great though. Coffee coolatas are noteworthy.
American staple. Ice cream machine is always broken and food order sometimes gets messed up, but in a general sense McDonalds is always there for you. You can go anywhere in the country and be close to one. Coffee for only a buck is the best part.
10. Cici's Pizza
All you can eat pizza for $5.99 is a hell of a deal. They have almost any kind of pizza you can think of, even a dessert pizza. This place is not for everyone. It's kind of dirty and they usually have a shitty arcade, but for six bucks what do you expect.
For those with a refined palette, it is important to identify the things that make chain restaurants great. This is entirely subjective. Applebees is garbage.