Category Archives: Fast Food

Whataburger Chorizo Burger and Chorizo Taquito

[Please enjoy this guest review from Robert – Not Bob, a valued sometimes-contributor to Junk Food Betty. Thanks, Robert!]

As I’ve discussed on this site before, Mexican Chorizo has long been absent from most American fast food menu, for a variety of (wildly speculative) reasons.

It is mostly considered a breakfast meat, and Americans already pretty much have their breakfast meat team roster filled, what with “all-star” bacon, “second string” sausage, and “that kid you pick to be on your team before you end up having to pick one of the dorks, geeks, or fatties ” ham.

Chorizo also enjoys a well-deserved reputation as a mystery meat. Even people that love the stuff will joke about the ingredients, which can contain things such as “Pork salivary glands”, “lymph nodes” and the ever-popular “fat (cheeks)”.

Chorizo’s texture, which can range from crumbly to vaguely viscous, probably also sets off a lot of warning flags to most gringos, who like their meat a little more solid.

Finally, Chorizo just sorta tastes weird. It’s has a distinctive “twang”, and is a little spicy, but not in the familiar pickled jalapeño way, or even in the becoming more familiar chipotle or sriracha way. I like it a lot, but I will admit it’s a bit of an acquired taste.

In the last few years, however, a few fast food chains have been adding it, albeit in limited capacities. Chipotle had it on their menu for about a year, but recently yanked it, reportedly to make room for queso on their menu. McDonald’s has rolled out chorizo breakfast burrito market tests several times but they have yet to add it as a permanent menu item. Some of the smaller “Mexican” chains, such as Del Taco and Taco Cabana offer it, while the big chains like Taco Bell have pretty much ignored its existence.

What I didn’t really expect is to see chorizo turn up on a fast food burger. However, Whataburger has done exactly that. Here is their description:

“We put perfectly-seasoned chorizo between two all-beef patties, topped them with two slices of Monterey Jack Cheese, grilled peppers and onions and our specially-made Creamy Chili Sauce for a bold flavor with just the right amount of spice.”

Sounds…. Interesting… and potentially messy. I’ve mixed chorizo with my beef while making hamburger patties before with tasty results, but it appears that they are layering it with the patties on this. I am glad to see that they’re opting for Monterey Jack over yucky American or boring Cheddar, and I’m always up for some grilled peppers and onions on my burger. I’m a bit skeptical about the “creamy chili sauce”, but hey, I’ll give it a shot.

First impressions are always a little rough.

I do like Whataburger more than most of the other fast food burger chains, mostly because their burgers seem a little more “old school”. However, one place they’ve long needed an update is in the bun department. Whataburger has stuck by the same mediocre bun for decades; I honestly do not recall them ever trying to jump on the artesian roll / brioche bun / ciabatta / whatever bandwagon. The standard Whataburger bun is what it is, and what it always is is “sorta smooshed”. I typically avoid the Whataburger Bun Blues by always ordering any sandwich from them on their delicious Texas Toast. But, since that’s not the default bun for the Chorizo Burger, and it was for a review, I took one for the team and went with ol’ smooshy.

Under the bun was a lackluster collection of soggy peppers and onions. I usually ask for a side of whatever sauce they’re putting on a new burger so I can try it separately, and this time I forgot. However, the “creamy chili sauce” appeared to be pretty much the same sorta-spicy, sorta-tangy sauce that’s been cropping up on everybody’s spicy burgers and sandwiches the last few years. They might call it “chipotle sauce”, they may call it “spicy mayo”, but it’s all pretty similar.

My attempts to pry the two all-beef patties apart to view the chorizo filling didn’t go so well. The gooey melted cheese had glued them together. I was finally able to pry up a corner to reveal…

….sometimes food just isn’t pretty. But hey, it’s the taste that counts, right?

Cross-sectioned, it basically looked like a Sloppy Joe with a few extra ingredients.

At this point the table and my hands were getting kind of messy, so without further reverse engineering, I gave it a try.

It turned out that actually eating it was less messy than dissecting it, mostly because, as previously mentioned, the glue-like cheese had stuck everything together. Not surprisingly, the bun was soggy, but luckily didn’t fall apart. Mostly what I tasted was the burger patties and cheese, with only a slight touch of chorizo flavor, and was more “tangy” than “twangy”, probably because the “creamy chili sauce” really dominated the flavor. The onions and peppers were lost in the mix. Overall it not only looked like a Sloppy Joe, it kinda tasted like one too.

The next morning, I overcame my disappointment enough to give Whataburger’s Chorizo Taquito a shot.

“A bold take on our breakfast classic. We filled a warm flour tortilla with freshly scrambled eggs, perfectly-seasoned, sizzling chorizo and a slice of American cheese.”

Reading the description didn’t give me much confidence. Who puts a “slice of American cheese” into a burrito? Did they not have access to shredded Cheddar?

First of all, for the better part of $3, this ain’t much of a burrito. [Ed. Note: It’s technically a taquito, but Whataburger’s definition of a taquito is insane and it’s basically a burrito.] It’s about the same size as the Chorizo Burrito McDonald’s test marketed, but they gave you two of them for $3. There was one similarity to McDonald’s burritos, though, and that was the accompanying “salsa” that was fit only for the garbage can.

Cross-sectioned, I did notice a distinct lack or the telltale red of chorizo, and a preponderance of yellow eggs. Tasting the taquito bore this out. I could have eaten the entire thing and not known it was supposed to be chorizo con huevos. It tasted more like “sprinkle of paprika and slice of American cheese” con huevos.

So, there you have it. Two more entries in the “mostly disappointing chorizo fast food” catalog. At this point, I’m not sure if the fast food industry will ever crack the enigma that is chorizo. Thank God (and the Mexicans) for taquerias!

Whataburger Chorizo Burger and Chorizo Taquito

  • Score(Whataburger Chorizo Burger): 2 out of 5 fat (cheeks)
  • Score (Whataburger Chorizo Taquito): 1 out of 5 stupid slices of American cheese
  • Price: I’m a careless idiot and lost my receipts, but the burger (with no sides) was almost $6, and the taquito was almost $3. Pricey!
  • Size: 1 burger; 1 taquito
  • Purchased at: Whataburger #113
  • Nutritional Quirk: Not surprisingly, the default 2-patty Chorizo Burger is a 1140 calorie, 2100mg sodium intestine bomb. Whataburger does offer it in single patty and Jr. sizes, not that that will really make much of a difference.

Jack in the Box Jack’d Jalapeño Hash and H’Angry Chicken Hash Munchie Mash-Ups

It’s rare that I’ll order french fries as a side to my fast food order, but their cousin, the hash brown patty, is another thing entirely. It’s a thing of beauty. Shredded potatoes that are formed into a hand-held shape and then deep fried into a greasy thing of glory? Yes please, all day long.

The only time I really like fries is when they’ve been smothered with cheese and other various toppings, so when Jack in the Box decided to do this with hash browns, I was excited. You’ve taken one of my favorite things and then done my other favorite thing with it, which is cover it with more stuff!

I’m amazed that nobody in fast food has done this before. I mean, does anyone even go to Waffle House for anything other than having the pleasure of ordering their hash browns smothered, covered, chunked, diced, peppered, capped, and topped, in any damn combination you please?

It’s a classic hangover remedy, which makes it a natural for Jack in the Box to be the first to add this to their menu. They’re officially called Munchie Mash-Ups, part of the Munchie Meal line, renowned for advertising to stoners and/or drunks.

In addition to these two flavors, there’s also the Wakey Bakey Hash, which is a mixture of eggs, bacon, pepper jack cheese and white cheese sauce with hash browns. I’m glad I didn’t have to say “Wakey Bakey” into the drive-thru ordering box, since I hate eggs and therefore cannot objectively review anything that contains them.

Jack’d Jalapeño Hash

“What do you call Crispy Hash Browns and Tasty White Cheese Sauce mashed up with Jalapenos, Bacon, and Pepper Jack Cheese?” This is the question Jack in the Box’s website asks of me. They believe the answer is “Ridiculously happy.” I counter with “Not enough toppings.”

I’m getting ahead of myself, however. First off, it appears that the base of these Hashes is two hash brown patties torn in half. The same type that you can get off the breakfast menu. Which means we’re off to a good start, because Jack’s hash browns are patties of greasy goodness.

I know I started off by saying there weren’t enough toppings, but it turns out that if you actually mash it up (as was promised in the name, but I’m willing to put in a little work) all the hash browns get coated quite nicely.

The jalapeños were your typical pickled sliced nacho affair, but there were enough of them to add heat to almost every bite. The bacon added a nice little crunch, but it was bacon bits and not the real thing. Not surprising, but a little bit disappointing.

It was hard to tell if there was any pepper jack cheese – maybe it blended in with the white cheese sauce, which was sort of generic as far as cheese sauces go, but added a lot of creaminess to the crispy hash browns.

I feel like a lot of this sounds disparaging, but when you combine all of these ingredients, something very simple but very delicious happens. Peppers, bacon, creamy cheese sauce and crispy hash browns all add up to a highly satisfying treat that straddles the line between a snack and a meal, depending on your appetite.

H’Angry Chicken Hash

“When hunger is mashed up with anger, it’s called h’anger. When Chicken Nuggets, Frank’s RedHot® Buffalo Sauce, and Ranch are mashed up with Crispy Hash Browns and Tasty White Cheese Sauce, it’s called Jack’s new *$3 H’Angry Chicken Hash Munchie Mash-Up. And it cures h’anger.”

These are Jack’s words. My response is that h’anger is a dumb portmanteau, and also that nobody uses an apostrophe in it. Way to take an already awkward and passe catch phrase and make it sound even more like it’s coming out of the mouth of your dad who just interrupted your high school sleepover to ask what everybody wants on their pizza. Anchovies all around, right, gals? Yes, he’s trying too hard after the divorce, but he’s doing the best he can.

Ol’ H’Angry starts with a base of those two halved hash browns patties, but after that things go a little off the rails.

It’s a mess, but kind of a beautiful one. Five – five! chicken nuggets perch precariously upon our hashers, drenched in ranch, Frank’s, and the seemingly ubiquitous Tasty (don’t tell me how to feel) White Cheese Sauce.

Oh, yeah, and there’s that big chunk of bacon in the front there. I was going to mention that this Mash-Up would have been perfectly fine without it, and then I read the description on the website and realized that it doesn’t belong there in the first place. Thanks for the errant extra clump of bacon, Jack in the Box employee!

Buffalo sauce, ranch, and chicken always go well together, and having all these condiments PLUS the cheese sauce made what are nothing more than kid’s chicken nuggets taste a little more special.

There’s really no way to eat both the chicken and the hash without things getting awkward, so I treated it as two snacks in one box. With three condiments, there was enough sauce left after I ate the nuggets to cover the hash browns, although I gotta say they worked less well with the potatoes than the chicken.

I liked both of my Hash Munchie Mash-Ups a lot, and for *$3 I’d say you’re getting a pretty good bargain, especially the H’Angry Chicken one. While you get a 2-for-1 deal with the chicken, I wound up liking the combination of ingredients on the Jack’d Jalapeño one better.

These may sound like a gimmick food – or do they? I can’t even tell anymore – but they’re legit tasty and might go into my regular rotation of Jack in the Box foods I order, which is something I can’t say of anything new they’ve come out with since the Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich.

*Sorry, Hawaii and Guam, they’re $4 for you for some reason. Still an okay deal.

Jack in the Box Jack’d Jalapeño Hash and H’Angry Chicken Hash Munchie Mash-Ups

  • Score (Jack’d Jalapeño): 4 out of 5 smothered, covered, chunked, diced, peppered, capped, and toppeds
  • Score (H’Angry Chicken): 3.5 out of 5 well-meaning, newly-divorced dads
  • Price: $3
  • Size: 1 Munchie Mash-Up
  • Purchased at: Jack in the Box #1516
  • Nutritional Quirk: A whopping 2,090 milligrams of sodium in one H’Angry Chicken Hash. You’re gonna be H’Thirsty after eating that. I’m sorry.

Wendy’s Bacon Queso Burger and Bacon Queso Fries

Oh Wendy’s, you had me at queso.

I’m pretty sure most of my blood is queso at this point. If you make a cheese that comes in sauce form, I’m pretty sure I’ve tried it. (Herdez Queso Blanco currently reigns supreme to me.) Quotes from the offensively boring commercial for Wendy’s line of queso products include “everything’s better with queso” and “feed your queso obsession”. I felt like they were talking directly to me.

Is everything really better with queso, though?

I thank both the Spring Oreos and the Herdez queso for their sacrifice. And yes, I tried it. It was beyond gross. Why did I do that?

Bacon Queso Burger

I picked the burger over the chicken sandwich that’s available (with all the same toppings) because I felt the beef/queso combo would be more interesting. I’ve dunked chicken into cheese sauce numerous times, but usually my cow interacts with cheese in slice form.

Wendy’s describes their Bacon Queso Burger as “A quarter-pound of fresh, never frozen beef topped with warm and spicy poblano queso, three strips of Applewood smoked bacon, fire-roasted salsa, red onions, and shredded cheddar cheese, all served on a toasted red jalapeno bun.”

I’ma get right down to it before I break down the various working parts: this burger was straight-up disappointing. I was hoping to just get real messy with some queso, but it was hardly there.

As you can see, there was more salsa than queso. It was had a little bit of heat, but the flavor was very bland. There was a hint of fire-roasted tomato, but other than that, it wasn’t something I would equate with actual salsa. It was more of a tomato mush.

I couldn’t taste any heat in the “red jalapeno” bun, although I could see little red flecks in it. It acted as little more than the usual deflated fast food bun, but the fact that it was toasted seemed to add a little extra touch to the burger that an untoasted bun wouldn’t; plus, that might have helped protect it from getting extra mushy from all the salsa.

One highlight: the bacon. I haven’t eaten at Wendy’s in quite a while, but one thing they seem to consistently get correct is their Applewood smoked bacon. It was thick, it was crunchy, and it was everything that fast food bacon usually isn’t. It’s just as good as if you made it at home in your cast iron skillet.

Also crunchy were the onions, being able to resist sogginess in their raw form. Their sharp bite seemed a bit unnecessary among all these other flavors, though.

And finally, on to the thing we’re really here for: the queso. The main star of the show. And the biggest problem.

First off, there were technically two types of queso on my Bacon Queso Burger. One of them was shredded cheddar cheese, except all I could detect were a few scant pieces on my burger. No worries though, because the star of the show is the queso sauce!

Except the queso sauce totally sucked.

First of all, I expected my burger to just be exploding with cheese sauce, much like with Jack in the Box’s Hella-Peño Burger. I don’t mind the mess; I welcome it. But the sauce was quite scant and the amount of salsa easily overshadowed it.

The biggest sin, however, is that this queso sauce had no queso flavor, and no poblano flavor to boot. Tasting it solo, there might have been a teensy bit of spiciness, but other than that, nothing. This burger had less cheese flavor than a regular cheeseburger, and it had TWO different cheeses on it.

Wendy’s Bacon Queso Burger made me sad. But I thought perhaps the next item I ordered would really let the queso shine…

Bacon Queso Fries

Wendy’s description: “Our natural-cut fries seasoned with sea salt and topped with warm and spicy poblano queso, three strips of Applewood smoked bacon, and shredded cheddar cheese.”

Okay, so no salsa mucking up the works now.

Which only reinforced how offensively bland this queso sauce was.

The bacon was still crispy and delicious (although a somewhat unwieldy fry topping) and Wendy’s fries are actually quite good and have that “natural potato” taste, so those were both good points. But it was, again, the highlight ingredient that was its downfall.

I will say that, on the surface, the fries looked short on toppings, but once I mixed it all together it coated all the fries quite nicely, and there was a lot of bacon to go around. Nothing irritates me more than cheesy fries or nachos that don’t get adequate coverage.

It took me a while to really pin it down, but Wendy’s queso is basically Bechamel sauce and xantham gum. Furthermore, Wendy’s promised me not just queso, but poblano queso, and while there seemed to be little bits of…things in the sauce, the flavor just wasn’t there.

You’ve besmirched the good name of queso, Wendy’s. I’d consider this a capital crime, but you do have really good bacon. And I can’t quit that chili. Just…work on your cheese sauce game, or just stay out of it.

Wendy’s Bacon Queso Burger

  • Score: 1.5 out of 5 “everything’s better with queso”s
  • Price: $4.89
  • Size: 1 burger
  • Purchased at: Wendy’s #00000621
  • Nutritional Quirk: On the Wendy’s website, the ingredients for Poblano Queso Cheese sauce just says “CONTAINS MILK”

Bacon Queso Fries

  • Score: 2 out of 5 “feed your queso obsession”s
  • Price: $2.49
  • Size: n/a
  • Purchased at: Wendy’s #00000621
  • Nutritional Quirk: At 510 calories, these fries are just 40 calories less than the burger. That seems wrong, somehow.

Taco Bell Naked Chicken Chalupa

The Naked Chicken Chalupa was in one test market in 2015 and another in 2016, and I read that it took two years to develop. Can you imagine being the person in charge for trying to make a fried chicken shell? Day after day, staring at this processed and battered (both literally and figuratively) piece of flat meat, trying through sheer force of will to transmogrify it into something it was never supposed to be?

“This is not how my life was meant to turn out,” he whispers to himself, fingers red and blistered from fry oil. “This was not why I got my Food Science degree. I was supposed to do good in this world.”

…If there’s a plus to rolling up on Taco Bell at 6:03am, it’s that your order is going to be fresh (or as fresh as you can expect). If there’s a drawback, it’s that you’re ordering a Naked Chicken Chalupa three minutes after opening time, and that feels embarrassing.

However, the nice man at the window did warn me that my Chalupa was fresh and therefore hot, which was both kind of him and made me chuckle at the accidental implication that the rest of my order was not, indeed, fresh. You mean the smashed wreckage that is the Meximelt isn’t lovingly crafted on the spot?

He was right though, as the fried chicken shell slightly burned my fingers when I took it out of its protective sleeve (smart move, Taco Bell) to photograph it.

I gotta say, I was surprised at how crunchy and juicy the chicken shell was. And spicy, too! I wasn’t even aware that it was supposed to be spicy, but my lips were slightly burning as I ate it.

Of course, the taco itself was mostly chicken. The sparse innards were your typical fare: shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, cheddar cheese and avocado ranch sauce. The last ingredient is the only real one of note, as its creamy texture and mild ranch flavor mixed nicely with the spicy chicken. Those bites were rare, but when they came together, it was really a good combo.

It’s disturbing how normal I felt while I was eating the Naked Chicken Chalupa. I mean, I’m eating a taco that has chicken instead of a shell. But really, it was just…eating some chicken. The thick, spicy breading and the moistness of the chicken were great surprises, especially given how pathetic the fillings were. It looks small, but it’s actually quite filling, and I can’t say as I wouldn’t have turned another one down.

Or maybe not, given what happened next.

I don’t often talk about the aftermath of eating the products I review, mostly because there isn’t one. Rarely, I get a surprise color poop, and that’s fun, but otherwise food is just food. In case you can’t tell, we’re going to get real with some toilet talk here. If that disturbs you, a.) why are you even here, and b.) skip the next paragraph.

Almost immediately after consuming the Naked Chicken Chalupa, I started having some pretty bad gas cramps. It was the only thing I’d eaten that morning, so I know it had to be the culprit. Just like any normal human, I get gas occasionally, but never have I had cramps that lasted for eight fucking hours. What I considered even more odd is that, while I was shitting more than usual, I wasn’t exactly wrecking toilets right and left. I’ve just never eaten something that left me in intestinal pain for an entire day, and I felt that was worthy of noting.

Junk Food Betty: Come to stare at gross pictures, stay for the shit jokes, leave a complaint in the comments.

Here’s a fun postscript: if you’re reading this, chances are you can’t actually get your hands on a Naked Chicken Chalupa. I suck at getting reviews out in a timely manner, and apparently this product was a big, fat failure. Less than a month after its premiere, Taco Bell has taken it off the menu. Everything you just read means nothing!

Taco Bell Naked Chicken Chalupa

  • Score: 3 out of 5 crampy food scientists
  • Price: $2.99
  • Size: 1 taco
  • Purchased at: Taco Bell #022951
  • Nutritional Quirk: No surprise, the item is no longer listed on Taco Bell’s website, so I can’t access the nutritional information. But given the “condition” I was left in after eating it, I’m assuming the entire taco was actually made of beans.

McDonald’s Lone Star Stack Burger

IMAGE01

Probably one of the more successful snack food marketing campaigns in the last few years, despite it having a name that makes me want to punch someone, is the Lay’s “Do Us a Flavor” campaign. Honestly, it really is impressive that they can get as many people as they do all worked up about potato chips. Because, really, they’re potato chips.

In the time since Lay’s first came up with that concept, a lot of other snack and fast food merchants have attempted to replicate it with varying degrees of success, but few of them manage to drum up the hype that Lay’s does.

It was only a matter of time until fast food behemoth McDonald’s decided to give it a crack. The result? The McDonald’s Burger Showdown.

Apparently, back in March, they announced this contest. People could go online and build their burger using a “long list” of “fresh” ingredients. Once you selected your ingredients, chose a name and submitted your virtual burger, you would be on your way to, perhaps, burger fame and a jackpot of $5,000. The submitted burgers would be voted on by the unwashed masses, then judged by a “panel of qualified judges” using a set of criteria including “taste”, “creativity” and “operations feasibility”. Sadly, I missed all the fun, since I only became aware of this after the winner was announced.

Before we GET to the winner, though, we should list all the finalists, shouldn’t we? Because really, there are no losers here. This is the winners circle, right?

McDonald's Lone Star Bronc Burger Promo

First up is the “Lone Star Bronc” consisting of a Premium Bun, two Quarter Pounder Beef Patties, American Cheese, Pepper Jack, Grilled Onions, Crinkle Cut Pickles, Applewood-Smoked Bacon, Shredded Lettuce and Sweet Onion BBQ Sauce.

McDonald's Dobletxmeet Burger Promo

Next is the “DOBLETXMEET”, whose name infuriates me no end, which is made up of an Artisan Roll, two Classic Beef Patties, Swiss, Grilled Mushrooms, Grilled Onions, Applewood-Smoked Bacon, Herb Seasoning, Chipotle Ketchup and Ketchup. I guess “bonus” ketchup. Somebody really likes ketchup.

McDonald's The McSqually Burger Promo

Our next contender is the curiously named McSqually, consisting of Texas Toast, two Quarter Pounder Beef Patties, two American cheese slices, Applewood-Smoked Bacon, and Big Mac Sauce.

McDonald's The Gourd Burger Promo

Then we have the also-curiously named “Gourd”, which sports Texas Toast, Shredded Lettuce, Applewood-Smoked Bacon, Guacamole, ONE! (1!) single, solitary Quarter Pounder Beef Patty, American cheese and Barbecue Sauce (apparently, NOT sweet onion barbecue sauce, but the other kind).

Who are we kidding here? If those aren’t the winner, then they are obviously the losers. As famed NASCAR driver Ricky Bobby says, “If you’re not first, you’re last!”. So now we come, at last, to the real winner. The best burger that Texas, apparently, has to offer.

Cue up its announcement commercial if you like, or just read on….

McDonald's Lone Star Stack Burger Promo

The Lone Star Stack, lovingly crafted out of only the finest of artisan ingredients, including delicious buttery Texas Toast, crispy and tangy Crinkle Cut Pickles, two juicy Quarter Pounder Beef Patties, creamy White Cheddar and American cheese, Applewood-Smoked Bacon, Caramelized Onions and Sweet Onion BBQ Sauce.

At this point, you’re probably thinking what I’m thinking. These are all within one or two ingredients of being the same damn burger. Texas Toast, BBQ sauce and caramelized onions are showing up just way too much here. Either their “long list” of possible ingredients was all like “Please check one: [_] BBQ Sauce, [_] Barbeque Sauce, [_] Chipotle Ketchup (alright, you got us, that’s really just BBQ sauce again), or [_] Sweet Onion Barbecue Sauce” or their “panel of qualified judges” consisted of one fat guy in bib overalls named Billy Joe Jim Bob that just really really likes BBQ sauce on his burgers.

…And therein lies one of the first lessons that McDonald’s did not take away from Lay’s “Do Us a Flavor”, and that’s differentiation. With Lay’s, you’re dealing with potato chips vs. other potato chips, so they’ve got to be different from each other. I don’t think they’d ever pit “BBQ Flavored Chips” against “Also BBQ, But It’s a Different Kind of BBQ Sauce Flavored Chips “. The merit of these burgers aside, I honestly doubt that in a real-life taste test I could easily choose between them, because they all sound so similar.

The second thing that McDonald’s failed to accomplish was to personalize the contest. Who made these burgers? What are their names? Their inspirations? Where’s our Cheesy Bread Karen to carry the torch for starving Olive Garden patrons worldwide? Where’s our Meneko Spigner McBeth to make us jealous of the hand-made sushi rolls she got in her lunchbox instead of Lunchables?

The closest thing that McDonald’s did to giving this so-called contest any personality was to include an infographic on their site that conveyed the following factoids:

  • 2,545 people named their burgers “Mc_SOMETHING_”
    Whelp, it IS McDonald’s and pretty much EVERYTHING is named McSomething. No shocker there.
  • 6,420 people put jalapeños on their burgers
    Also, no big surprise. This is Texas and we do like our jalapeños. The real surprise is that none of these made it to the finals. I’m maintaining that Bill Joe Jim Bob is a big ol’ wuss when it comes to spicy food.
  • 248 burgers had “Alamo” in their name
    HELLO. TEXAS…. AGAIN. I’m surprised that number is so small, honestly.
  • 278 artisans were named “Josh”
    An interesting distinction to make, and the closest to knowing who is behind any of these burgers we’re apparently going to get. Also, I love how these days, the only thing you have to do to be dubbed an “artisan” is make something yourself, even if it’s just by clicking on burger ingredient names on a screen.
  • 708 burgers had no patty at all
    These were immediately disqualified, I am sure.
  • 15,541 people added spicy ingredients to make flaming hot creations
    …And again, not a single spicy burger made it to the finals. Somehow.
  • 497 people put bacon on their burgers, but no beef
    That seems a bit odd. Maybe they were confused and thought that the beef was automatic.
  • 2,522 people put “Texas” in their burgers’ name
    Not to belabor a point, but yup, “TEXAS!” If Texas-shaped buns had been an option, I’m sure they’d have been in the majority.

Another key point that McDonald’s missed in their promotion is the promotion part. I never even heard about this until after this contest was over and the burger was out. Can’t be any buzz if nobody knows about it. On a side note though, as a Texan I do appreciate the nice play on the Gonzales “Come and Take It” flag. Nice touch.

Anyway, so I thought I’d try this thing out, so I headed to my local TEXAS McDonald’s. “Yee-Haw!”

The first thing I saw when I walked in the door was this delightful little display across from the order counter.

McDonald's Lone Star Stack Burger Promotional Display

Other than this unusually “crafty” point-of-purchase signage, the ordering process was uneventful, so I retired to a nearby booth to experience the best burger that Texas has to offer.

McDonald's Lone Star Stack Burger

As is typical, it looked considerably more…. compressed than the burger in pictures. Time to check under the hood.

McDonald's Lone Star Stack Burger Inside

I will say that they did well with their onion and pickle coverage. A generous amount of sauce was splooshed between the patties and the top toast slice. There was no spread at all on the bottom slice. The toast also looked considerably thinner than the Texas Toast pictured, and really didn’t look or feel toasty at all.

I was easily able to taste the onions separate from the burger, since so many had fallen off. This is good, because they did have a pretty solid caramelized taste. Unfortunately, under all that BBQ sauce, their flavor was almost completely lost.

The so-called “Sweet Onion Barbecue Sauce” just tasted like any random generic BBQ sauce. Its purpose there, obviously, was to do little other than keep you from tasting the onions, or the white cheddar, or anything, really, other than BBQ sauce. ….and to make the Texas Toast predictably soggy and fally-aparty. I actually do like Texas Toast on a burger, but it does have to be very toasted to not become a gooey mess. If McDonald’s plans to continue making it available, maybe they can check with Whataburger to see what their secret is.

The pickles, being pickles, did manage to cut through the overwhelming BBQ sauce taste to make their presence known. The bacon was, typically, lost and unnecessary. And that slice of American cheese was likewise unneeded. Why not two white cheddars? Why taint a “premium” burger with crappy American cheese? As I’ve said before, American cheese goes on value-menu items, not on a pricey limited special offering.

Taken as a whole, the Lone Star Stack was not a terrible burger, it was just extremely mediocre and boring. And, like most McDonald’s high-end burgers, it seemed to me to be a tad overpriced. Having two Quarter Pounder patties did make it fairly meaty, but it really didn’t manage to distinguish itself in any other way. It also doesn’t help that I’m really just not a fan of BBQ-sauced burgers.

McDonald’s Lone Star Stack Burger

  • Score: 2 out of 5 Soggy Toast Slices
  • Price: $5.99
  • Size: 1 Burger
  • Purchased at: A McDonald’s in Texas! Yep!
  • Nutritional Quirk: Nearly twice as many calories (960) and fat grams (54) as a Big Mac. Yee-Haw!

Burger King Angriest Whopper Sandwich

Burger King Angriest Whopper Sandwich PackageI remember trying the original Angry Whopper back in (what Wikipedia tells me was) 2008. This was before I had a website where I could share my views on fast food with the world, but that didn’t stop my husband and I from reviewing it with each other, and the general consensus was “unimpressed”.

We also pondered why the Whopper was angry, and was the whole burger angry? I declared that I would be disappointed if every ingredient wasn’t angry. I want my iceberg lettuce angry, dammit. This conversation went on for several minutes. We have fun.

Now, eight years later, Burger King is at it again with its Angriest Whopper Sandwich. I feel like we skipped a rung. Where was the Angrier Whopper? I also feel like they’ve marketed themselves into a corner. If this is the angriest a Whopper can possibly get, and it’s not spicy as hell, I guess we’ll all just have to give up and go home.

That wrapper is making a lot of assumptions about a.) the current status of my health and b.) how impressed I’m going to be with the Angriest Whopper. Also, what am I supposed to do, pin my sauce-stained wrapper to my shirt as a badge of pride? Show it to all my friends?

Oh, I know what I’m supposed to do: post it to Instagram, where nobody can care, and without looking you in your pride-filled eyes.

Here’s how Burger King describes the burger: “The Angriest WHOPPER® sandwich consists of savory flame-grilled beef, piled high with thick-cut bacon, American cheese, iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, angry onion petals, jalapeños, creamy mayonnaise and spicy angry sauce all layered between a red bun that has hot sauced baked in.”

That’s right, “hot sauced”. Apparently Burger King was so busy dyeing their buns a violent shade of red that they forgot to hire a copy editor.

Burger King Angriest Whopper Sandwich

Here we see the Angriest Whopper in all its unnatural glory. The angry onion petals and jalapeños are readily apparent, which is nice.

Burger King Angriest Whopper Sandwich Ingredients

Here we see Burger King’s notoriously shitty iceberg lettuce. I can actually see some green in there, which is a marked improvement from the usual BK sandwich. Also, good angry petal coverage, confusing tomato slice placement.

Of course, I had to try the bun on its own, to see if I could really taste any hot sauce(d). As it turns out, I actually could! It didn’t have a distinct hot sauce(d) flavor, but there was definitely some spice in there. Color me impressed. Also, color my poop red. More on that later.

Burger King Angriest Whopper Sandwich Halves

My Angriest Whopper got very angry when I cut it in half. Things were sliding out everywhere. There were casualties. However, this gave me the opportunity to try the angry onion petals by themselves, one of the few unique ingredients on this burger.

They did indeed taste spicy, but I couldn’t tell if that was the petals themselves or the fact that they were already covered in angry sauce. Predictably, they were also very soggy, which is disappointing since they could have added a nice crunch.

Which brings us to the other unique ingredient, the angry sauce. There certainly was a lot of it, and it was pretty spicy, but there were several things that bothered me about it. First of all, it was also sweet. And it was more of a glaze than a sauce – it had the consistency and appearance of sweet and sour sauce.

The sweetness in the sauce really bothered me. There’s no sweet in angry! There was a real opportunity to make a snot-inducing habanero sauce or something similar. I did get some sniffles, but that was about it.

As for the other ingredients: the bacon was crispy but not really necessary. The lettuce and mayo completely disappeared and were also unnecessary. The tomatoes were actually juicy and added a nice cooling factor. The jalapeños were your typical pickled variety and added to the heat.

And the cheese. The cheese! One pathetic slice of American?! Even the original Angry Whopper had pepper jack! American is a step down in angry level. It also added nothing of value to the burger.

Overall, Burger King’s Angriest Whopper Sandwich was a messy disappointment. There was too much crammed into the burger, the cheese was lame, and the fact that the sauce was sweet really did make me angry.

Was it spicy? Yes, the copious amounts of sauce and the jalapeños did make for a pretty high level of heat for a fast food burger. But the sauce pretty much dominated everything. And it was sweet. Did I mention that?

I wish I could have tasted if the angry onion petals were actually angry or not. I’d like to see them as a side dish menu option as an alternative to onion rings. I would definitely order those with a side of ranch.

It was hard to tell if the hot sauced bun added any heat to the burger, but that brings me to an important Public Service Announcement:

Burger King seems to have a propensity for adding food coloring to their menu items that make the end result at best interesting and at worst, alarming. Yes, I am talking about your poopies. The Halloween Burger turned people’s feces neon green, and the Red Velvet Oreo Shake sent some people running to their doctors, alarmed that they had a sudden case of “I am hemorrhaging blood out of my ass”.

Given that nature doesn’t make fire truck-red hamburger buns, I am expecting similar…results after having eaten the Angriest Whopper Sandwich. I’m not above resorting to poop humor in my reviews, but I’m including this in all seriousness in case someone eats this burger and then runs to the ER because they think they are dying. You are not dying. Your poops have just been dyed.

Unless you really are dying. I’m not a doctor. I’m just trying to help save some people some panic attacks and medical bills.

Burger King Angriest Whopper Sandwich

  • Score: 1.5 out of 5 red poopies
  • Price: $5.79
  • Size: 1 sandwich
  • Purchased at: Burger King #17145
  • Nutritional Quirk: 51 grams of regretted fat.

Taco Bell Quesalupa

Taco Bell Quesalupa PackageTaco Bell was all abuzz on Twitter last week, touting it had what could be the “Biggest Idea Ever” (shove it, electricity) and showing a bunch of maybe-celebrities holding a green brick, because nothing gets you excited for Taco Bell like a fake greenscreened brick. And Mario Lopez. I saw him in there somewhere.

So excited was Taco Bell about this new product that they wouldn’t talk about their new product. Instead, they enticed Twitter followers to pre-order this Holy Grail of fast food online, allowing them to receive the mystery item two days before the rest of the filthy serfs who weren’t obsessed with greenscreen bricks.

I toyed with the idea of pre-ordering it, because I had to be honest with myself and realize that I am one of those people who would pre-order Taco Bell. But then I figured, eh, I can wait two days and avoid being That Guy. Plus, I was 99% sure what the new product was anyways.

And I was right! If you watched the Super Bowl, you saw that it was the Quesalupa, which TB describes as “A beautiful, chewy Chalupa shell on the outside, with delicious pepper jack cheese baked right inside the shell. Yes. Majestic, melty cheese stuffed inside the shell. A cheesy shell, filled with seasoned beef, lettuce, tomato, reduced fat sour cream, and you guessed it, even more cheese.”

Beautiful and majestic. Two things I always associate with Taco Bell.

While I wasn’t willing to pre-order, I did decide to try Taco Bell’s online ordering, mostly because you can customize the shit out of your order without shame. Extra sauce and jalapeños on everything, please! (I ordered my Quesalupa as-is for the sake of this review.)

I could tell my local Taco Bell didn’t get a lot of online orders because when I pulled up to the speaker I said that I placed my order online and the man immediately said, “Oh, Kelley?” I had apparently been the only person to order online in at least a few hours.

When I went up to the food-getting window, another guy came up and said, “Oh, is this the online order?” So, I guess online ordering isn’t very popular in my area. But the transaction did go very smoothly.

Taco Bell Quesalupa Filling

In case you’ve never had a Chalupa, the draw is the shell – it’s fried flatbread, which puffs up and becomes chewy and crispy; almost flaky. So, yes, the Quesalupa is just a Chalupa with pepper jack cheese inside the shell.

Since the inside ingredients are exactly the same as a Chalupa (and many other Taco Bell items), I’m not really going to talk about them. They were sufficiently Taco Bell.

Taco Bell Quesalupa Cheese Stuffed Shell

Right off the bat, I had beef with my Quesalupa. In every single advertisement, it shows people pulling their Quesalupa apart, with delicious-looking cheese stretching out between the two halves. I cut mine with a knife in order to take pictures, but I can assure you that at no point was there any stretching, even when I tried.

The issue, as far as I could tell, is that the cheese stuffed into the shell was just a big glomp near the bottom of the shell. Let it never be said that I don’t like cheese, but it felt like it was just sitting there, being greasy and congealed. And definitely not stretching.

I guess the fundamental problem is that I wanted enough cheese in my Quesalupa to make it feel like a quesadilla/Chalupa combo, but that amount of cheese resulted in a fatty overload. It felt like a bogged-down Chalupa. And the pepper jack was very mild and didn’t add much flavor.

I might be taking an unpopular stance here, but I kind of wish they’d stuffed the Chalupa shell with nacho cheese. Would that make it messy as fuck? Hell yes. But I feel like you could add more of it, and get more flavor, without having the clumpy, greasy effect.

Is Taco Bell’s Quesalupa Bigger Than Everything (hashtag hashtag hashtag)? Hardly. In fact, while I was eating it I realized that I felt the Quesarito was a bigger success, and then I wanted a Quesarito instead.

Taco Bell Quesalupa

  • Score: 2 out of 5 green bricks
  • Price: $2.99
  • Size: 1 Quesalupa
  • Purchased at: Taco Bell #022951
  • Nutritional Quirk: One Quesalupa has 40% of your daily fat covered, and you’ll feel it when you’re eating it.

KFC Nashville Hot Chicken

KFC Nashville Hot Chicken ContainerI always get excited when KFC comes out with something new, because they’re pretty unique in the fast food arena in that they’re not coming out with a new menu item every week. In fact, I’ve been doing this review thing for [checks imaginary watch] seven years now and I can count my KFC reviews on one hand.

Can we also talk about the new Colonel? If you gave me five million guesses as to what Norm MacDonald would be doing in 2016, I never would have guessed “being Colonel Sanders”. Also, that would be a really exhausting game. “Being Burt Reynolds” probably would have come up at least a dozen times.

Okay, focus. KFC’s new Nashville Hot Chicken was first test marketed in Pittsburgh. Just joshing, it was test marketed in Nashville.

…Wait, no, it really was test marketed in Pittsburgh. What?

Perhaps they were afraid Nashvillains, which I am totally calling people from that city from now on, would disapprove, and Nashville Hot Chicken would never live to see its nationwide release.

You see, Nashville Hot Chicken is a real thing, with a storied history that would be far too long for me to explain here, and is already explained very eloquently in that article.

To put it overly simply, Nashville Hot chicken is fried chicken that’s hot, and it comes with dill pickle slices. Count me all in.

KFC’s website sucks at telling you about their menu options, so I’ll inform you right now that you can get Hot Chicken in 1-piece, 2-piece or 8-piece options. I found this odd, and dubbed them “Why Bother, Decent Lunch, and Fat Man Party Time”.

They also offer Tenders, but I forgot to note their quantities because stop being a pussy and just eat your bone-in chicken. (I’m allowed to say that because I used to be one of those pussies.)

KFC Nashville Hot Chicken

I chose Decent Lunch, which came with a biscuit and a small coleslaw. I was not aware of the latter part until I got my Decent Lunch home. Nobody asked me what side I wanted. I would have chosen mashed potatoes, of course. The last time I ate KFC coleslaw was about 20 years ago. It turns out I still hate it.

Oh, right, the chicken. Here’s how KFC’s “we’ll tell you about our food but not how much you can buy” website describes it: “Get that flavorful, spicy, smoky Nashville Hot Chicken. Now with pickles! It’s finger lickin’ hot! (The chicken, not the pickles. The pickles are more like soothing lozenges for your mouth.)”

KFC Nashville Hot Chicken Skin

Here’s how I describe it: not smoky, barely spicy. Quite the review, right? Honestly, though, that’s about it. The chicken was moist, which was good. The batter was crunchy and medium-thick, which was also good. But the Hot was only a mild build of spicy heat, and I only detected a bit of smoky in a few bites. The bright spot was a mild peppery spice that worked well with the batter and the chicken.

Even the pickles were sad – they were the exact same ones you’d see on a shitty McDonald’s burger. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but I felt like the pickles were part of the whole experience, so they should have been better.

In the end, I was left with a red grease slick on my fingers that made me wonder why it was there when the heat wasn’t. Sure, there was a little spice, but not enough to need a pickle lozenge. I feel like KFC did a disservice to the name Nashville Hot Chicken.

In its defense, it was a lot better than the bucket of regular KFC chicken I bought along with it, which had a super-thin batter and was soggy like it had been sitting around for half a day. Has KFC’s regular chicken declined, or does my local restaurant just suck?

So, I’ve spent the majority of this review shitting on KFC’s Nashville Hot Chicken, and now I’m going to turn around and tell you to try it. It’s actually pretty tasty; it just fell short of my expectations in both the spicy and the smoky departments. But hey, it’s something new and different from KFC! That doesn’t come around too often, so give it a go.

Or, if you live in Nashville, get some real Hot Chicken.

KFC Nashville Hot Chicken

  • Score: 3 out of 5 pickle lozenges
  • Price: $5.79
  • Size: 2-piece meal
  • Purchased at: KFC #D212071
  • Nutritional Quirk: No nutritional info on their website, but I could tell from the red grease slick that covered my fingers that this is not health food.

Burger King A.1. Halloween Whopper (aka HA.1.loween Whopper)

Burger King A.1. Halloween Whopper (aka HA.1.loween Whopper) Mummy WrapperBurger King, YOU ARE THE BEST.

This is a sentence I have never said before, and possibly will never say again. Burger King has been soooo boring for years now, minus their Chicken Fries (which I inexplicably like) and their recent Red Velvet Oreo Shake (notable only for the amount of people who said “I thought I was going to die” after drinking it).

But for the next month, Burger King has won my heart. And all it took was some food coloring and a new wrapper.

In case you haven’t been following along, Halloween is my favorite holiday. And I happen to like junk food. So my demand for Halloween-themed food has always been high. For the most part, however, fast food keeps out of the Halloween biz, minus the occasional pumpkin pie milkshake or whatever.

The one exception was Taco Bell’s Black Jack Taco, released way back in 2009. And even then, they pretty much refused to associate it with Halloween, even though it was so obviously a Halloween taco.

Burger King isn’t trying to be sneaky with this one. They’ve embraced the darkness, literally, with their A.1. Halloween Whopper. Which they also call the HA.1.loween Whopper, a much more creative name that they seem to have stepped away from, possibly because nobody could pronounce it.

Look at that packaging. LOOK AT IT. It’s a burger wrapper made to look like mummy wrappings. Such a simple design, but so effective at making my heart explode with joy. You can tell the employees were instructed to wrap the Whoppers just so, so that you could see the mummy’s eyes staring out at you at just the right angle. I want to buy a bunch of them and use them as window decorations instead of store-bought clings.

Burger King A.1. Halloween Whopper (aka HA.1.loween Whopper)

Of course, the real draw here is the burger itself. Look at that burger. LOOK AT IT. I’d seen a million pictures of the HA.1.loween Whopper online, but nothing quite prepares you for having it right in front of you, knowing that you’re going to be putting that evil darkness into your own mouth.

As a fun aside, I asked for apple slices instead of fries with my burger and the person thought I wanted the apple slices on the burger. I hurriedly assured her that I did not. But it does prove that at Burger King, they really will make it your way.

Burger King A.1. Halloween Whopper (aka HA.1.loween Whopper) Bun

They claim that A.1. Sauce is baked right into the bun, but I took several bites of the bun alone and if there was any taste at all, it was merely the ghost of A.1. It tasted a little bitter to me, but I couldn’t tell if that was real or if it was because I was eating black bread.

Speaking of what’s in the bun, here’s a highlight reel from the laundry list of ingredients: FD&C Red #40, FD&C Blue #1, Raisin Juice Concentrate, Worcerstershire Sauce, and FD&C Yellow #6. You know what’s not listed? A.1. Sauce.

Burger King A.1. Halloween Whopper (aka HA.1.loween Whopper) Halves

As for the burger…I mean, do you really care about the rest of the burger? It’s a goddamn Whopper with A.1. Sauce on it. I guess the most interesting part was that they claim to use the Thick and Hearty version, but the sauce on the burger was anything but. In fact, the whole thing was messy as fuck, and it seemed like the Thin and Regular A.1. mixed with the mayo, resulting in watered-down flavor.

But at least as the mixed-up condiments ran down my hands, they looked kind of like blood. This is the kind of Halloweeny thinking you’ve got tap into to get that holiday spirit going while you eat a black burger in a mummy wrapper.

Oh, and the black bun had one last parting gift: I checked my mouth in the mirror right after eating the HA.1.loween Whopper, and my tongue was bright blue! I mean bright blue. Neon.

Actually, it might have one more parting gift – one similar to the Red Velvet Oreo Shake. But after looking at the bun and reading the list of food colorings in it, I’m prepared to not freak out if my Whopper says its final goodbye in a neon-colored way.

Burger King A.1. Halloween Whopper (aka HA.1.loween Whopper)

  • Score: 4 out of 5 neon blue tongues
  • Price: $4.99
  • Size: 1 burger
  • Purchased at: Burger King #17145
  • Nutritional Quirk:In case I wasn’t clear in the last paragraph, my poop might be neon blue. Just saying.

Jack in the Box Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich Munchie Meal

Jack in the Box Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich Munchie MealI get excited every time Jack in the Box comes out with a new Munchie Meal. I feel like Jack uses the Munchie Meal line to let their imaginations run wild and be completely unapologetic about the wacky foods they come up with. “Mozzarella sticks on a chicken sandwich? Yes. Jalapeño poppers on a burger? Yes. Chicken and hash browns on a croissant? HOW CAN WE NOT?”

If this all sounds like the ramblings of a stoner, well, Jack in the Box has done nothing to discourage this idea. Munchie Meals used to be advertised as available between 9pm and 5am, but they’ve since made it clear that if you have an office job, you can still get your munchies fix. It will just cost you $2 more, for some reason.

In another move away from weed culture, Jack has moved away from his “puppet hanging out with Weedlord Cheeto on the couch” commercials and has gone in a different, more mature direction.

It’s all narrated by the classic old man sitting in the corner of a dark, dingy pool hall, wearing a bowler hat because they’re always wearing a bowler hat. Jack enters looking like a bad update of the Fonz, but I guess he’s supposed to look really cool. He walks in, sinks an entire 8-ball rack in one shot, shoves a Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich in a surprised man’s face, and walks out.

“It was just an ordinary night until he showed up, with a hungry look in his eyes. And then…he made…the shot. And when jaws dropped, he had something for that too.” Then the old man chuckles because he is wise.

I’m not entirely sure what point the commercial is making. Or who Jack is playing against, since he just sinks the balls and walks right back out in the span of 21 seconds. Also, it’s pretty rude to just shove a sandwich into someone’s maw, but on the other hand it’s rude to walk in, take up a table and then leave without paying.

I guess I’d be surprised too, but in more of a “what the fuck just happened?” way than a jaw-dropping awed kind of way.

As always, my Munchie meal came with two tacos, halfsies (half regular, half curly fries), the sandwich and a drink. Since I’m easily susceptible to signage, I decided to order a Loco Lime Fruit Cooler as my drink, since I’d never had one before and there was an advertisement for it hanging right there.

However, the lady on the other end of the talky box thought “Loco Lime” translated to “iced mocha”. As soon as the words “Loco Lime” had left my lips, I regretted the silly phrase, and since I refused to say it twice, I just went with the coffee drink.

Let this be a lesson to fast food marketing teams – those of us who are easily embarrassed will be put off by silly-sounding menu items we have to say out loud. I’m looking at you, Taco Bell, with your Doubledillas and your Quesaritos.

Jack in the Box Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich

The Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich is unassuming on the outside, unlike the immediate mess that the Exploding Cheesy Chicken was. It’s also on the small side for a chicken sandwich, but that’s to be expected – after all, you’re also dealing with two tacos and halfsies. I’ve always found the “Munchie” in Munchie Meal to be a bit misleading, as I am always stuffed after eating one.

Jack in the Box describes the sandwich as “Spicy crispy chicken topped with onion rings all covered in nacho cheese sauce with jalapeños on toasted sourdough bread.” A pretty no-frills deconstruction.

Jack in the Box Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich Inside

After detaching the top bun, we get to the meat of the matter. Two onion rings that eerily compliment the circumference of the bun, three jalapeños, one spicy chicken…filet thing, and, of course, the nacho cheese sauce.

I was impressed with the methodology involved in constructing a Spicy Nacho Chicken – it appeared that an onion ring has been employed to keep the nacho cheese sauce and the jalapeños from running amok. Since the onion ring is almost as big as the bun, this didn’t limit these ingredients to just a tiny spot in the middle.

Jack in the Box Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich Halves

I always like when Jack puts something on sourdough, so I liked that part right off the bat. As for the chicken, it was a little thin, but fairly moist, and the breading actually had a nice little kick. I assume it’s the exact same chicken they use on the regular Jack’s Spicy Chicken. It was also nice that the breading stayed crispy, even under a layer of cheese sauce.

Amazingly, so did the onion rings. It’s nice to see onion rings on a sandwich actually be crispy. (I’m looking at you and your Western Bacon Cheeseburger, Carl’s Jr.) I feel like the breading added more taste and texture than the onion inside, which was largely flavorless and served mostly to just piss me off when it all wanted to come out in one long string, like onion rings do every damn time.

The nacho cheese sauce was your typical hyper-processed sauce, which I know is a big turnoff for some people. To me, however, it served as the perfect condiment, keeping everything moist and adding creamy texture and cheesy (if artificial) flavor.

Of course, the perfect compliment to nacho cheese is jalapeños! I only got three, but one of them was so massive it covered half the sandwich, ensuring that I got a hit of heat in every bite. They were your typical pickled jalapeños, and while those can sometimes lack a bite, these definitely packed a spicy punch that was supported by the chicken breading.

The Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich isn’t the craziest Munchie Meal Jack in the Box has ever dreamed up, but I think it’s a solid sandwich. The chicken was moist, crispy and spicy, the jalapeños were spicy, the cheese kept everything lubricated, and the crispy onion rings kept the whole thing from becoming a gigantic mess. None of these ingredients are new, but put together, they make for a solid late-night JitB run.

[Disclaimer: I paid for my Munchie Meal using a Jack Ca$h card provided to me by Jack in the Box. This in no way colors the objectivity of my review.]

Jack in the Box Spicy Nacho Chicken Sandwich Munchie Meal

  • Score: 3.5 out of 5 Fonz’d-out Jacks
  • Price: Free (normally $8)
  • Size: 1 Munchie Meal
  • Purchased at: Jack in the Box #106
  • Nutritional Quirk: Eating a whole Munchie Meal is really bad for you, if you look at the nutritional info. Since this isn’t really a surprise, I’ll just use this space to reiterate that I really hate those damn onion strings.