Chain Restaurant Sliders Ranked Worst To Best, According To Consumers

It's not quite a finger food, but not quite a full-sized dish, either. It's a slider — a miniaturized version of a juicy beef burger, a fried chicken sandwich, or a crispy fish toastie. While often served as an appetizer prior to a larger meal, sliders in and of themselves can also be served as entrées ... especially if multiple are piled onto a plate all at once.

Sliders, interestingly, are a distinctly American treat. The very first variants were developed at White Castle in 1921, and since then, handfuls of restaurants across the United States have recreated their own versions of condensed sandwiches for their menus. That being said, sliders can be a difficult thing to get right. Seeing as their small size leaves for only a few bites in total, there is less room for mistakes. Each slider's flavor, moisture level, and condiment ratio must be acceptable in order for it to be considered a worthy snack. Some restaurant chain's tiny burgers have managed to achieve this title of delicious ... others, however, have proved nothing but a disappointment to those who've bitten into them. Before you go in search of your next small but dignitary bite, take a look at our list of chain restaurant sliders ranked worst to best, according to consumers.

11. A&W's 2 Chicken Sliders

What do you get when you put together the last names Allen and Wright? A&W, of course. The franchise founded by Frank Wright and Roy Allen originated in California in the early 1900's, initially selling nothing but root beer. Eventually, a full-scale food menu was added to its previously established beverage list. Today, this menu consists of hot dogs, burgers, more root beer, milkshakes, cheese curds, fries ... and yes, sliders.

A&W's 2 Chicken Sliders are a pair of breaded white-meat chicken tenders slid inside two white mini-buns, finished off with a hefty slab of mayo and a few sliced pickles. With such a would-be delicious combination of flavors, what could possibly go wrong? Unfortunately, according to the consumers who've sampled them, there is a lot that has gone wrong with these baby poultry sandwiches.

Food reviewers across platforms slam the sliders, often referring to the chicken cutlets as being dry and chalky, the bread flat and droopy, and the mayonnaise heaped on in what becomes an absolutely overwhelming layer of white sauce. Overall, eaters seem to be nearly universally left with one dissuading thought: 'I paid how much for these?!' Yikes. When searching for the perfect slider, we have to recommend steering clear of the chicken variants from A&W.

10. Savvy Sliders' assorted beef and chicken sliders

Given that Savvy Sliders, a Michigan-based burger chain with 41 current locations under its belt has the term 'slider' built into its name, you would aptly expect the long and varied assortment of mini-burgers listed on its menu to be top-notch. But according to many consumers who've sampled them, Savvy's sliders are not, in fact, so savvy after all.

Despite the creative and mouth-watering names of the chain's miniature delicacies, such as the Classic Angus Beef, the Boomin' Chicken, or the Spicy Falafel, biting into one is consistently described as a less-than-exciting experience by eaters. "Mediocre and over-priced," reads a comment on Reddit, giving voice to the overall consumer feel regarding the franchise's products. "Burgers are fine," noted another on a separate Reddit thread, "nothing to really write home about. [...] But they are too pricey for what you get." Expensive and average is not the greatest combination in the world, so if you want a slider that's affordable and tastes better than simply passable, there may be better options than Savvy Sliders to get your fix.

9. Super Duper Burgers' Mini Burger

Super Duper Burgers is a regional chain, with 15 total locations sprinkled across the Bay Area of California. Its menu, as you'd surmise, features various beef burgers, chicken sandwiches, egg-croissant pairings, milkshakes, and — you guessed it — a single slider option. While technically labeled the Mini Burger, this teenier patty is composed of just a ¼ pound of beef topped off with lettuce, onions, tomato, and the chain's signature sauce, all sandwiched together in a small sesame bun. While the description itself is enough to initiate a craving, sadly, the little delicacy sounds much better than it is according to eaters.

It's not that the Mini Burger is bad, per se ... it's just okay. No, we're serious. Reviewers across platforms consistently refer to Super Duper Burger's tiny entrée as being completely and utterly average — so much so, that it has to count for something when considering where it places in the slider ranking. "It was very 'okay'," said one consumer on Yelp when referencing the Mini Burger. "Same with the garlic fries. There wasn't anything about this place that makes me want to run back anytime soon but it wasn't bad." Echoed another on Tripadvisor: "The mini burger was good, not great compared to others we had across the country." All in all, the persistent unexciting reviews puts these ones ranking pretty low on our list.

8. Sonic's Chicken Slingers

Sonic is known for its massive and varied menu, so the fact that it has a slider available on its extra-long food lineup is hardly a surprise. Sonic has tried its hand at a few different slider-style sandwiches over the years, such as the now-discontinued Signature Slinger cheeseburger, which was crafted using both beef and mushrooms. Its cousin, however, the Chicken Slinger, survived the chopping block and is still on the drive-in restaurant's menu to this day. One crispy cutlet of chicken is slid inside a little Brioche bun spread with mayo and pickles, and voilà — you have a yummy-looking snack perfect for a quick bite at lunch.

The problem with this poultry-forward mini sandwich? It harbors some seriously inconsistent reviews. Some eaters love it, others absolutely hate it, while some still place it somewhere right in the middle. Whether it's an issue with the product itself or simply a problem of consistency in its cook and construction between restaurants, the fact that this one harbors opinions all over the map earns it a spot right in the center of our list. If you do go for it, we sure hope that you are handed a slider that is on the satisfactory side.

7. Jack in the Box's Jr. Burgers

Jack in the Box has an impressive list of burger offerings on its menu. Alongside the full-size beef masterpieces (such as the Jumbo Jack) is a line of mini-burgers called the Jr. that — while not technically advertised as sliders — are shrunken versions of some of the chain's most popular beefy creations. The Jr. Jumbo Jack, the Jr. Jumbo Jack Cheeseburger, and the Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger are all little bites providing the consumer with fewer calories than their full-size counterparts ... but do they also provide less flavor and enjoyment?

Some customers believe so. One recent YouTube reviewer referred to the Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger as being "absolute garbage," claiming the ingredients tasted artificial and unpleasant. Conversely, however, another food reviewer on TikTok praised the Jr. burger line. "Honestly, I think that Jr. Jumbo Jack tastes better than the full-size one, and it's a great deal," he said, going on to describe how the various condiment flavors (given the smaller surface area of the burger) are more condensed in a Jr., providing a more full-bodied bite. Since the pendulum seems to swing so fiercely from liked to disliked where the Jr. burgers are involved, we'll keep them planted in the center of the ranking.

6. Arby's varied sliders

Although there has been a slew of now-discontinued sliders on Arby's menu over the years, there are currently four up for grabs: the regular Chicken, Buffalo Chicken, regular Roast Beef, and Jalapeño Roast Beef. There are two major flavor profiles here: chicken, and roast beef. And when it comes to enjoyability, the two options providing more of a kick — the Buffalo and Jalapeño — are apparently the way to go.

Many eaters conclude that the Jalapeño Roast Beef and the Buffalo Chicken slider offer a much more flavorful bite than the standard Chicken or Roast Beef variants, thanks to the simple but powerful additions of sauce and spice. The two milder sliders are often referred to as a bit bland — giving the Arby's sliders a mere 50% positivity rating. In addition, the chain's sliders also get a few points knocked down for what many call questionable size. "The chicken sliders use small strips which are a practical mismatch to the roll anyways. It's like serving up a hot dog on a hamburger bun. At least ⅓ of your bite is basically chewing just bread and sauce," said an alleged employee on Reddit. All in all, if you're going to go for it with a slider at Arby's, we have to recommend the Buffalo or the Jalapeno based on the positive flavor feedback — just be prepared for the possibility of a disappointing bread-to-meat ratio.

5. White Castle's Original Sliders

Given that the White Castle franchise was the original slider creator, we would love to grant it the title of first place for slider taste in our countdown. However, a lot has changed since 1921 when the restaurant debuted its Original Sliders. More and more restaurants have drawn inspiration from the world's first burger chain, creating their own delicious beef variants. Unfortunately for White Castle, there are those in the now much-more-flooded burger market who are simply doing it better, according to many consumers.

"It's the worst food ever and proud of it," said a commenter on Reddit in reference to White Castle's slider-style sandwiches. "Most fast food chains make some effort towards food quality. White Castle...rejects that approach." Another user countered this by bringing up a valid point: "Funny thing is, White Castle has that reputation, but at the same time when you order sliders, you get them right off the grill. Every other fast food restaurant in that price range is reheating burgers made previously or just keeping them warm." This truth regarding the freshness of the tiny, cooked-to-order burgers gains it some points in our book ... as well as the masses of consumers still loyal to the famous White Castle sliders, of course.

4. Krystal's Original Krystal

From the Original Krystal sliders composed of beef, mustard, and pickles to the line of poultry-based Chik sliders and the recently-added Krabbycake tiny fish sandwich, the fast-casual chain known as Krystal certainly has its share of miniature sandwiches to choose from. And when it comes to the chain's Original Krystal beef sliders, which are often compared in both appearance and style to the White Castle variants, Krystal's has a pretty tasty tiny sandwich under its belt.

Both the Krystal and White Castle standard sliders maintain the same square meat patty, the same square bun, and the same onion and pickle condiments. The only obvious difference between the two compositions, in fact, is that the Krystal sliders come with mustard as part of the typical sandwich recipe. Given this striking similarity in concept, it makes sense that the two versions are pegged against one another on taste ... and though it's a close call, the majority of consumer opinion seems to put the Krystal sliders just slightly on top. "Krystal All the way!" says a consumer in a comparison video on YouTube, illustrating the commonly shared viewpoint. "[...] They have other items to try as well ... Corn pups, Krystal chic, hot dogs .... Yummy! I always found White Castle buns to be dry and not as fresh as Krystal buns." Regardless of where you personally stand on the White Castle vs. Krystal debate, objectively speaking, we have to place Krystal one step ahead in our ranking.

3. Burgerville's Big Cowboy Sliders

Burgerville is a regional burger-and-fries chain based in Portland, Oregon. Its fast-casual 39 locations fill the bellies of Pacific Northwesterners with cheesy breakfast burritos, bacon beef burgers, grilled-and-fried fish sandwiches, fish and chips, plant-based burgers, and (of course) sliders. The Big Cowboy Slider is made with a scrumptious mini patty of antibiotic-free beef, strips of crispy bacon, barbecue sauce, fried onions, and quite possibly the best part: a slice of melted Tillamook cheese.

Everyone who's ever eaten a cheeseburger (or should we say, a cheese-slider) knows how important the quality of the slice of melted cheese is to the overall taste of the product. And at Burgerville, the very best of cheddar slices — those of the celebrated Oregon-based dairy company, Tillamook — are used to top its miniature beefy creations. This touch, along with the savory beef, sweet sauce, and addition of crispy bacon makes for a truly enjoyable slider-eating experience. "The food is amazing there," said a happy Oregonian on Reddit."[...] To expand on their food, it's awesome how it's all local and it tastes incredible! I had In-N-Out up in Keizer once and it really pales in comparison to Burgerville imo." High praise — praise that all but ensures a solid meaty slider on your next stop-in.

2. Hopdoddy Burger Bar's Happy Hour Sliders

Hopdoddy Burger Bar is a sports bar-style restaurant chain with a heavy presence in the Southern United States. Not only does the casual dining franchise sport incredible cocktails, alcohol-infused milkshakes, spicy fried chicken sandwiches, and massive burgers with creative condiments, but it also sports some delectable little sliders as part of its special happy hour menu.

Between the hours of 3-6 p.m. (otherwise known as 'Hoppy Hour') at Hopdoddy locations, consumers can snag a plateful of delicious sliders alongside their fresh brew or margarita. The franchise's sliders are relatively basic in their makeup, featuring nothing but onions, melted American cheese, and a signature sauce on top of a beef patty, but it is the beef itself that elevates this particular chain's miniature sandwich. All of the meat used in Hopdoddy's house-made burgers is regenerative; meaning, it is drawn from grass-fed, pasture-raised, healthy cows. It's these happy-cattle patties that really make the quality — and therefore the taste — of Hopdoddy's sliders pop. Oh, and did we mention the buns used to encase them are delectable King's Hawaiian sweet rolls? If these facts alone don't sell you on giving the sliders a try, perhaps the fact that online consumers are trying to emulate the sandwiches will. "Sliders at Hopdoddy?" reads the title of a Reddit post, on which a consumer asks for the coveted recipe. It's official: these ones are worth a try. 

1.Smalls Sliders' Biggie Smalls

Smalls Sliders is a rapidly growing burger chain — so much so, that it was recognized by Nation's Restaurant News for its impending competitiveness in the fast-food scene. As the franchise's name suggests, all of its burgers are made in the slider style; and the menu itself is relatively humble in the way of options. Just three different types — the original Smalls Slider, the Biggie Smalls, or the Biggie Smalls with Bacon — are cooked up in the kitchen of Smalls Sliders. But when the quality of these tiny beefy sandwiches is magnificent, who cares about the quantity?

From news outlets to online comments to video taste tests, Smalls Sliders is making waves — in a good way. "Good things (i.e. burgers) come from Small Sliders in Baton Rouge," reads the title of a raving review from The Advocate, referencing one of the burger chain's 180 locations. "I'll go by anytime I want a quick, quality burger — or four." Another review posted on YouTube described the sliders as "mind-blowing," outlining the buttery bun, the perfect patty, and the glorious flavorful house queso included for dipping. Given all of this universal positive buzz, the majority rules in this case: Smalls Sliders takes the cake when it comes to the ultimate slider. If there's not one nearby you, never fear — given the chain's quick-as-lightning expansion, you may not have to wait too much longer for your perfect mini bite.


In order to create the ultimate ranking of chain restaurant sliders, online consumer reviews across platforms such as Reddit, Yelp, Tripadvisor, YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and personal blogs were scrupulously consulted. The writer's own taste experiences were taken into account as applicable, as well, and all of these aspects contributed to what we believe to be a fair and accurate categorization. However, taste is subjective, and is important to note that individual preferences and experiences may vary.