Dickey’s Barbecue Pit: A Slow-Smoked Legacy Since 1941

Barbecue … a word cherished by many and a meal that has brought families together for generations. Slow-smoked, tender and flavorful meats have been at the epicenter of many celebrations, turning dinner experiences into truly memorable moments.
One barbecue franchise, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, has been serving authentic, competition-quality Legit. Texas. Barbecue. to fans nationwide since 1941. At Dickey’s, the food is meant to be shared over conversations, laughs, celebrations, playoff games and more to bring good food and good people together no matter what the occasion.
“We pride ourselves on cooking authentic, competition-style barbecue and comfort food that the whole family can enjoy,” said CEO Laura Rea Dickey. “Between dine-in, takeout, delivery, holiday meals and catering, guests have endless ways to get a hold of Dickey’s famous barbecue.”
When Dickey’s Founder Travis Dickey returned home to Dallas after serving his country in World War I, he turned his love of authentic, slow-smoked barbecue into a business – Dickey’s Barbecue Pit. Travis worked the butcher block while Miss Ollie Dickey served sandwiches and kept the books. The menu was limited to beef brisket, pit hams, barbecue beans, potato chips, beer, bottled milk, and sodas.
The original Dickey’s location in Dallas, Texas is still open and serving guests today. Travis’ son, Roland Dickey, stepped in to run the family restaurant in 1967 after his father’s passing. In 2006, his son, Roland Dickey, Jr., took on the role of head pit master and CEO, and later went on to become CEO of Dickey’s holding company, Dickey’s Capital Group. Dickey’s is now the world’s largest barbecue chain and has grown to more than 500 locations across the United States and internationally and is currently spearheaded by Roland Dickey’s daughter-in-law Laura Rea Dickey.
Franchising Dickey’s Barbecue
Nobody knows barbecue like Dickey’s. With nearly 80 years of experience smoking the tastiest meats around and over 25 years of helping franchisees reach their goals, Dickey’s team knows its way around the barbecue business.
Dickey’s takes pride in the fact that its team offers support for franchisees every step of the way. They help with everything from real estate selection to bid comparison and assistance with ordering from Dickey’s network of preferred vendors.
Dickey’s uses original time-tested recipes and serves signature Southern Hospitality with every plate. Every Dickey’s location slow smokes all of its meats onsite in open kitchens where guests can interact with their local Pit Master. In addition to ongoing training, a dedicated field and home office teamwork alongside each Owner Operator to guide them through the grand opening and to keep things running smoothly for years to come.
New Owner Operators attend Barbecue University, a three-week-long program that combines in-depth classroom-style learning and hands-on training. Owner Operators graduate with the knowledge needed to run a successful Dickey’s. Dickey’s also regularly adds modules and relevant updates on the Barbecue University online portal so that Owner Operators and Pit Crew team members can stay up-to-date and continually improve. The system allows for tracking of modules, so Owner Operators always know where they stand with development.
The Menu for Growth
An award-winning training program helps to ensure that Owner Operators are ready to run their own Dickey’s.
“Once you are open, Dickey’s in-house marketing team creates effective targeted campaigns designed to drive traffic so you can focus on operations,” said Laura Rea Dickey.
The Dickey’s menu is full of classic time-tested recipes, but the brand is ripe with innovation, especially when it comes to technology and data. Technology has always been important to Dickey’s, and prior to the pandemic the brand started enhancements to the e-commerce and online ordering platforms. The updated e-commerce site coupled with an enhanced franchisee intranet portal – the Smoke Pit – allows Owner Operators to have improved access to hundreds of support resources.
From a proprietary online ordering system to Smokestack 2.0 – a proprietary KPI and business intelligence data tracking system – Dickey’s provides the tools and technology to equip owners for success. Dickey’s digital investments coupled with a strategic approach to building sales have positioned the brand to achieve same-store growth throughout the pandemic, so Dickey’s has a strong foothold in the coming days.
In addition to stellar domestic growth, Dickey’s just announced a letter of intent to open 50 locations in Australia. International expansion has been a focus for the brand, with expansion also planned for Pakistan and the Republic of Georgia. Dickey’s already has overseas agreements in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Brazil, Singapore, and Egypt.