In 1946 Eldridge Litton founded Litton’s Market. The market became known for offering a wide range of groceries, produce, hardware, feed, and a full service gas station.
Eldridge Litton’s son Edwin grew up helping in the family business. A counter deli was added in 1962. The very first “Litton Burger” was sold here for .89 cents. This soon to be famous hamburger would later launch the idea of a new direction for Litton’s Market.
Edwin’s two children, Barry and Kelly, the third generation of the Litton’s Market family, picked up where their father and grandfather left off.
Barry, a butcher by trade, opened a fresh meat market in Fountain City in January 1980.
In 1981 a customer asked Barry to cook him a hamburger on the market's three-legged electric skillet. The next day, he returned bringing in 4 more customers. Barry sold his first 8 oz hamburger with bacon on a hoagie bun for $1.99. This rekindled the “Litton Burger” that had been a success since 1962. Two months later Barry was taking counter orders.
Kelly Litton is passionate for fresh well prepared food and the culinary arts. Following her studies Kelly began overseeing the kitchen at Litton’s Market.
Barry expanded to a full service restaurant in 1983. Sundays and holidays were always reserved for family time, Litton’s continued the tradition of closing the restaurant to honor the commitment to church and family.
During the 1990’s Litton’s Market and Restaurant became a North Knoxville landmark known as the home of the “10” (“10” came from the Bo Derek era; a slang statement for perfection).
The bakery was also started in 1983. Under the direction of self-taught baker Lynda Jones the bakery began creating a wide range of delectable desserts and breads.
A generation came of age at Litton’s Market and Restaurant. Loyal customers from all walks of life politicians, lawyers, business leaders, athletes, coaches, and popular entertainers, have made the restaurant their personal dining room.
Regional and national media coverage such as: ESPN and Southern Living have enticed travelers to include Litton’s Market and Restaurant as a destination in their travel plans through East Tennessee. The burgers and desserts are continually voted as East Tennessee’s Best.
Delicious home-style food partnered with quality ingredients, the staff’s genuine southern hospitality, and excellent customer service keeps this unique dining experience at the top of food lovers’ lists of favorites.