Famous Since 1966

So, how did Lee’s become famous in the first place?

Dig deeper and learn the story behind the recipe.

Lee's Store


America’s First Taste Of Fame

​Lee Cummings and Harold Omer open “Harold’s Take Home” restaurant in Lima, Ohio where Lee introduces his Famous Recipe chicken.


Up & Running

Lee’s opens new stores in Dayton and Cincinnati, Ohio and Kalamazoo, Michigan.


The Great Taste Grows

Company pilot and director of operations Jerry Sullivan helps open 55 new restaurants for the company and becomes the franchisee for store number 100 in Sanford, Florida.


Fifteen years & going strong

Lee’s Famous Recipe marks its 15th anniversary the same year Shoney’s Inc. in Nashville, Tennessee purchases the rights to the company.


Famous Recipe's First Farmhouse

Lee’s introduces its new farmhouse store design in Jacksonville, Florida.


Quarter-Century of Chicken

Lee’s celebrates its 25th anniversary with Lee Cummings as its national spokesman.

THE 2000's

Expanded Menu Offerings

The Lee’s Brand stays strong through several ownership changes, introduces Spicy Jumbo Dippers, and strategically focuses on breast strips and new sides to enhance our customers’ experience.

THE 2010's

Focused on Franchising

Lee’s re-engineers itself to better support its licensing and franchising efforts across the US, and internationally. New stores are opened or built in Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, and Canada. The brand continues to see sales growth outpacing the industry.


Fifty Years of Famous Flavor

Lee’s celebrates 50 years of being FAMOUS FOR CHICKEN.


The Future is Famous

The Lee’s Famous Recipe brand is purchased by affiliates of Artemis Lane Partners with plans to reinvest in the brand to support a new phase of growth. Lee’s sets its highest sales year on record with over $200 million in system-wide sales.


New Branding & Restaurant Prototype

Lee’s introduces a new visual identity for the brand and announces a new restaurant prototype. Working with a new roster of marketing partners, this elevated and modernized branding will help drive even more growth as Lee’s continues to set sales records.