El Pollo Loco, pronounced “L Po-yo Lo-co” and Spanish for “The Crazy Chicken,” is the nation’s leading quick-service restaurant chain specializing in flame-grilled chicken. Founded in Guasave, Mexico in 1975, El Pollo Loco’s long-term success stems from the unique preparation of its award-winning “pollo”-- fresh chicken marinated in a special recipe of herbs, spices and citrus juices passed down from the founding family. The marinated chicken is then flame-grilled, hand cut and served hot off the grill with warm tortillas and a wide assortment of side dishes.
The first El Pollo Loco, or “The Crazy Chicken,” began as a roadside chicken stand in the small town of Guasave on Mexico’s Pacific Coast. It featured an authentic family recipe-fresh chicken marinated in special herbs, spices and citrus juices and then flame-grilled to perfection. The restaurant quickly became a local favorite. In 1980, the first California restaurant opened.
Today, El Pollo Loco is owned by American Securities Capital Partners, a New York-based equity investment group and Company Management. The tradition continues with signature dishes that satisfy consumers desire for flavorful food that fits well with today’s healthy lifestyles. We’re currently flame-grilling marinated chicken in 322 El Pollo Loco restaurants: 137 are owned and operated by the company and 185 are owned by franchisees.