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Mankato, Minnesota: Last Happy Chef

Last survivor of an iconic franchise roadside eatery, this is the only remaining Happy Chef restaurant with a talking, spoon-hoisting Happy Chef statue. 36 feet tall, counting the spoon.

Happy Chef Restaurant

51646 US-169, Mankato, MN
Happy Chef Restaurant. Just north of the interchange of US Hwy 14 and US Hwy 169, on the west side of US Hwy 169.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

Visitor Tips and News About Last Happy Chef

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Last Happy Chef.

Last Happy Chef

A regional icon with a rich history. The restaurant is a traditional American, feel-good diner with great food and service. The chef statue was renovated in 2018 and has a motion-activated, speaker system that shares custom-recorded jokes and humorous banter. If you find yourself traveling highway 14 or 169 it's a great place to refuel your vehicle and yourself.

There is also a great dog park located across the highway for your furry travel companions.

[Justin Day, 09/04/2023]

A triumph of vocal restoration! The Roadside America Team last heard his corny quips on a 1992 road trip in the O.M. Wienermobile.

Last Happy Chef

After 20 years of silence, the last Happy Chef has his voice back! You no longer have to press a button to hear him talk; motion sensors trigger his voice as people walk by. Kind of cool to know that they fixed him up!

[Terry Wermerskirchen, 01/07/2019]

Sample Happy Chef joke: "I'm old enough to remember when emojis were called hieroglyphics!"

Happy Chef.

Last Happy Chef

A part of restaurant history, the Happy Chef restaurant in Mankato, Minnesota is the last of its kind. For those in larger vehicles wishing to check this place out, right next door is a BP truck stop with plenty of parking.

[Rick Sare, 06/19/2018]

Happy Chef.

Big Happy Chef

A big, happy, bow-legged chef waves a big spoon at motorists on Hwy 169 north of Mankato.

[Lapchik the Motorcyclist, 02/25/2016]

Happy Chef.

Last Happy Chef

The Happy Chef statue is right on the main road at a cute old restaurant that would be a good breakfast, lunch or dinner stop!

[Meredith, 07/29/2015]

"Oh boys and girls," says Happy Chef when you push his button, "I'm so happy you came to see me. Did you realize I was born and raised in Mankato?"

Nearby Offbeat Places

10-Foot-Tall Steel Godzilla10-Foot-Tall Steel Godzilla, North Mankato, MN - 2 mi.
Drive A TankDrive A Tank, Kasota, MN - 7 mi.
Lillo's Metal Art: Eiffel Tower, Firing Rifle, Jesse JamesLillo's Metal Art: Eiffel Tower, Firing Rifle, Jesse James, Good Thunder, MN - 10 mi.
In the region:
Death Spot of Little Crow, Hutchinson, MN - 57 mi.

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