Beyond Fries: 3 Unique Sides on the Burger King Menu

As for fast food fries, McDonald’s (MCD) – Get McDonald’s Corporation report was a clear customer favourite. It seems that every few years Restaurant Brands International (RSQ) – Get Restaurant Brands International Inc report Burger King and Wendy’s (MAGNIFYING GLASS) – Get Wendy’s Business Report restart their fries (usually saying they’re better than McDonald’s) and customers rarely seem to agree.

Wendy’s tried putting bacon and cheese on its fries, nicknaming them Baconator Fries while Burger King had the unfortunate experiment of low-calorie Satisfries gone horribly wrong. None of this helped either brand nab its rival with a Thrillist ranking placing McDonald’s at number two behind Arby’s Curly Fries.

On this list, Burger King came in 13, behind the two Yum! Brands (YUM) – Get yum! Report Brands, Inc. KFC and Taco Bell, which only sometimes offers its Nacho Fries. It’s embarrassing but not as bad as Wendy’s, which saw its revamped 17th tier fries trashed by the critic.

“Wendy’s old fries were nothing out of the ordinary (trust us, we’ve had a lot of correspondence about fries over the years), but they were perfectly enjoyable and paired deliciously with being pushed in a Frosty. Now they have this weird, barely-there-but-definitely-there artificial taste that seems off, despite the visible patches of potato skin,” the site shared.

These results were very similar to a story from Uproxx, which ranked McDonald’s behind only Five Guys, which is a much more expensive fast food offering, with Wendy’s and Burger King ranking well below the undisputed leader in fast food.

That’s probably at least part of why Burger King decided fries shouldn’t be its only side dish. And that’s taken the chain down some pretty strange roads, at least for this category of restaurant.

Burger King goes way beyond fries

Burger King has been selling onion rings since 1998, when they first appeared on its dollar menu. The chain has kept them ever since, and while they have their fans, they never became the fan favorites one would expect, if only because neither McDonald’s nor Wendy’s sell onion rings.

The chain, however, offers a varied menu of side dishes that include:

  • Cheese bites: “Melted cheesy potato bites covered in a coating of crispy breadcrumbs.” It’s a potato-based non-fried and who complains about the addition of cheese?
  • Jalapeño Cheddar Bites: “Our Cheddar Jalapeño Bites are filled with gooey cheddar cheese and spicy jalapeño chunks, covered in a light, crispy coating.” These don’t have any potatoes involved, but are quite a similar item to the Cheesy Tater Tots.

  • Mozzarella sticks: These are self-explanatory, but they make sense for a fast food menu, even if they never gained a lot of followers.

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Burger King also has its chicken fries, a form of frying that is at least unique.

“Made with white meat chicken, our chicken fries are coated in a light crispy breading seasoned with savory spices and herbs,” the chain explained on its website. “Chicken fries are shaped like french fries and are perfect for dipping in one of our delicious sauces. Choose from BBQ, Honey Mustard, Ranch, Zesty, Buffalo and Sweet & Sour.”

Something works at Burger King

Burger King may lag behind McDonald’s (and maybe Wendy’s) when it comes to fries, but it’s grown its business in the US and around the world.

“Burger King’s international business, which reported positive same-store sales growth of 19.4%, a sequential acceleration of 320 basis points. In addition, Burger King US began to narrow the gap to the performance of industry and saw comparable sales improve to more than 1.8% from a 1.6% decline in the third quarter,” RBI CEO Jose Cil said on the earnings call. of the fourth quarter of its chain.

And while none of these side dishes seem overly popular, Burger King clearly believes in them as they survived a recent menu cut.

“In late December, we rolled out our first of 2 waves of menu simplification, removing low volume items so team members could focus on serving our most popular products and providing customers with a better experience. Burger King consistently fantastic,” Burger King US President Tom Curtis shared.

The changes did not impact sales and appear to have resulted in an increase in repeat visits due to improved execution.

“In addition, we are streamlining some product builds into the menu and simplifying our menu boards to make it easier for team members and guests to produce and order. These measures and the renewed focus on operations are well welcomed by our franchisees and are beginning to drive progress in several key operational metrics, including order accuracy and overall satisfaction,” he shared.

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