Here's How Many Michelin-Star Restaurants The US Has In 2024

The Michelin Guide is considered one of the most authoritative restaurant guides in the world. It was started in 1900 by the founders of the Michelin tire company as a way to get French motorists to hit the streets (and therefore buy more tires). Now, here we are, over a hundred years later — of all the awards and accolades a restaurant can receive, a Michelin-star rating is still regarded as the most prestigious in the food world. It's truly been a wild ride.


Michelin stars are awarded once a year, honoring restaurants all around the world. Since its start in Europe, the Michelin Guide has expanded its reach, leaping across the pond and arriving stateside in 2006. As of 2024, the U.S. has 234 restaurants with at least one coveted Michelin star. It's worth noting that, as of May of this year, Michelin has only rated restaurants in just over 40 countries and regions, and seven U.S. states.

Michelin-star rating system, explained

The Michelin Guide has a three-star rating system; so even though a one-star review is considered a disaster on Yelp, in the Michelin world, one star denotes that a restaurant has "high-quality cooking" and is "worthy of a stop." Two Michelin stars indicate that a restaurant's "excellent cooking" is "worth a detour," and three stars signifies an "exceptional" restaurant has been deemed worthy of a "special journey." To earn a star, a restaurant must impress Michelin's team of anonymous inspectors, and a Michelin distinction can take several years to attain. However, stars can also be revoked. The awards are updated and given out annually, so each year, a restaurant has the ability to be awarded a star, or is at risk of losing a star.


Today, there are over 3,500 Michelin-star restaurants worldwide. Of the 234 Michelin-star restaurants in America, 189 have one star, 32 restaurants have two stars, and only 13 restaurants have an elusive three-star rating. Currently, California has the honor of being the state with the most Michelin-star restaurants, at 18 establishments.

The Michelin Guide goes beyond the stars

The Michelin Guide has grown its repertoire of awards over the many years it's been operating. In 1997, Michelin began recognizing restaurants that serve excellent food at affordable prices with the Bib Gourmand award. The main Michelin-star system honors fine dining restaurants. Bib Gourmand, on the other hand, highlights the more low-key establishments that may be just as delicious as their white-tablecloth counterparts, but are far less expensive. Currently, there are over 3,000 Bib Gourmand-winning restaurants worldwide, 370 of which are in America.


In 2020, the guide began awarding the Michelin Green Star to restaurants that demonstrate excellent sustainability and environmental practices. Any restaurant that's already in the Michelin guide is eligible for a Green Star, and so far, it has been awarded to over 500 restaurants worldwide, 29 of which are in the U.S.

While there are countless foodie rankings and resources that exist, the Michelin Guide is still a go-to authority for outstanding restaurants around the world. So the next time you're looking to enjoy a fabulous dinner, it might be worth trusting the Michelin Man and consulting one of its guides.