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Good to Go: Old Favorite Cowboy Chicken Shows Us How Takeout Should Be Done

It can feed a family well.
It can feed a family well. Taylor Adams
Good to Go is a column where our food writers explore Dallas’ restaurant scene through takeout orders, delivery boxes and reheated leftovers.

Forcing yourself to get your food only to-go can make you look back a bit.

At least, it has for me since I recently ordered something I frequently got in college: Cowboy Chicken.

It still holds up. The quick-serve restaurant has been around since 1981, and while we’re focusing on what’s best to get to-go, we’re going with this one today.

I used to go here a lot because it was easy enough to get good, flavorful protein and plenty of vegetables.

Admittedly, a favorite side is the creamed spinach — it really is everything you want it to be — but we’re told they won’t have it on the menu again until fall.

Still, you can get the rotisserie chicken cooked over a wood-burning fire, along with plenty of other sides that both satisfy cravings and actually have some nutritional value — something we shouldn’t skimp on, especially these days.

Here's another checkbox that’s filled on this: It travels well. It should. The place does plenty of takeout during Normal Time. But while we get more and more takeout with starches that fall to a sad state or a frou-frou presentation that sloshes to the side in transport, it’s nice when you can travel 15 minutes and get something that still holds up.

This chicken is so tender and juicy that even if you’re not a fan of the fowl, you’ll love its flavor under the crisped skin.

click to enlarge Exceptional sides (except for their best, which is creamed spinach): coleslaw, roasted corn, green beans. - TAYLOR ADAMS
Exceptional sides (except for their best, which is creamed spinach): coleslaw, roasted corn, green beans.
Taylor Adams
Sides for our recent order included fried okra, green beans, Mexican street corn and jalapeño coleslaw. The fried okra is good; not the best, but it hits the spot. (Random fact: The Dallas Morning News, in its former location, had the Headliner Diner, which served fried okra I am missing to this day.)

That jalapeño coleslaw has a bright flavor with virtually no heat, by the way.

click to enlarge Fried okra from Cowboy Chicken - TAYLOR ADAMS
Fried okra from Cowboy Chicken
Taylor Adams
Also worth getting are the twice-baked potatoes and the baked mac and cheese. And don’t skip the bread: They have decent rolls, too.

There are family meals, as well, if you’re looking to feed four to six easily.

Sure, we could eat nachos or barbecue all the time, but sometimes it’s nice to get a super, roasted chicken with sides like mom would make on a Sunday afternoon.

Cowboy Chicken, 5315 Greenville Ave., Suite 125 (Upper Greenville) and 17437 Preston Road (Far North Dallas). Online ordering available for pickup or delivery.
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Taylor Adams has written about the restaurant industry for the Dallas Observer since 2016. Now the Observer's food editor, she attended Southern Methodist University before covering local news at The Dallas Morning News.