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Young Ones to Watch: Sarah Klaassen, Co-Founder of Hendough

Sarah Klaassen has been in the food service industry since she was 15 years old, most recently working as a pastry chef for the Biltmore Estate. Now, she and her husband are building a fried chicken and doughnut empire.

By Sarah Brown1851 Franchise Copy Editor
Updated 3:15PM 10/22/21

Sarah Klaassen is the co-founder of North Carolina-based chicken and doughnut franchise Hendough, a comfort food concept that is quickly becoming an icon in the South. Klaassen has been working in restaurants since she was a teenager, either cooking, serving, bartending, attending culinary school or working as a fine-dining chef. Her husband Paul comes from a very similar background, and when the two decided to start a business, they easily settled on their favorite southern food combo: fresh, made-from-scratch chicken and doughnuts.

Today, Klaassen is helping grow the Hendough brand throughout the South so that incoming franchisees will be close enough to benefit from her and her husband’s hands-on support. The brand is currently looking to expand in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Florida. She loves the idea of franchising because it allows her to work with driven individuals like herself.

“We can’t be locals everywhere, so franchising is a unique opportunity to grow our brand and know that the business owner cares just as much as we do about Hendough,” she said.

Her biggest piece of advice to young entrepreneurs who are interested in business ownership or franchising: Ingrain yourself in your local community.

“Always look for ways to help your community, and you will get that support back,” she said.

Watch the full video interview above, or click here to watch it on YouTube.