KANSAS CITY — The chicken sandwich wars waged between Popeyes and Chick-fil-A in August 2019 are far from over. McDonald’s joined the battle in December 2019. In May, KFC and Golden Chick threw their hats in the ring. In June, Checkers and Rally’s restaurants, Sonic and Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken introduced their own iterations. Now, three more restaurant chains are entering the war.
New from Wendy’s is the Classic Chicken Sandwich, featuring a crispy all-white meat chicken breast filet layered with mayo, tomato, lettuce and pickles served on a toasted bun.
“We can't wait for our fans to get their hands on the New Classic Chicken Sandwich, which has the perfect crunch from breading and pickles paired with the juiciness and flavor of the filet,” said Carl Loredo, chief marketing officer for Wendy's. “The Classic joins what customers have already come to know and love in spice and taste from Wendy's via our Spicy Chicken and Pretzel Bacon Pub Chicken Sandwiches.”
Church’s Chicken is launching Church's Chicken Sandwich, featuring pickles, mayo and an all-white meat chicken breast filet breaded with Church’s proprietary homestyle seasoning and buttermilk all served on a toasted brioche bun that is brushed with honey butter. The chain also will offer a spicy version with spicy mayo and jalapeño peppers on the side.
"Anyone who thought the chicken sandwich wars were over, consider this your notice. They've only just begun. As a challenger brand, we're taking a big shot ... This is just the opening salvo."
— Dooley Tombras, president of Tombras, Zaxby's creative agency of record
“We are experts in bone-in chicken, but the fan demand for that same level of quality and flavor in a boneless fried chicken sandwich from Church's was emphatic and persistent, so we got to work and delivered,” said Brian Gies, global chief marketing officer for Church’s Chicken. “Our culinary team truly outdid themselves on this masterpiece, which combines everything great about Church's, between two buns. It's a culmination of 70 years of down-home flavor and fried chicken expertise brought into every bite.”
Zaxby’s is introducing Zaxby’s Signature Sandwich, featuring a double breaded 100% white breast chicken filet with three thick-sliced pickle chips and a choice of Zax Sauce or Spicy Zax Sauce on a buttery toasted split-top bun. The spicy sauce features jalapeño and red cayenne.
“Zaxby's new Signature Sandwich has been 30 years in the making,” said Joel Bulger, chief marketing officer for Zaxby’s. “It's a natural brand evolution for us, perfecting the size, taste and flavor profile of this indescribably delicious chicken sandwich. We know the competition is fierce, but we're also confident that once you try it, there's no going back.”
Popeyes’ chicken sandwich debuted in August 2019 and sparked the so-called chicken sandwich wars among fast-food chains.