"We believe that we are ready to expand and to start strategically to look at new markets, … and the results so far of the ones we've opened and the reaction have been very good," CEO George Michel told CNBC in an interview.
Other metrics have shown signs of progress. The chain's average restaurant volumes increased from about $1 million in 2010 to $1.3 million last year.
Same-restaurant sales, a key industry indicator, have also shown strength in recent years. Although they rose just 0.1 percent last year, they jumped for the three years prior, rising 9.3 percent in 2013, 7 percent in 2012 and 5.8 percent the previous year.
Read MoreHere are the 9 worst chain restaurant meals
Adding ribs to the menus, focusing on value, improving customer service and refurbishing restaurants helped drive sales during this period.
Still, a harsh winter dented sales at the beginning of last year, as it did with many other restaurant chains, Michel said.
The chain plans to concentrate growth on several key markets, including New York, New Jersey, Texas, Florida and Philadelphia. Michel estimates the chain will add six to eight net new restaurants this year. It plans to open 20 others next year.