There’s no doubt that last year was one for the birds — in more ways than imaginable. In a reflection of a growing focus on fried chicken in fast-food markets — and decreased interest in beef — McDonald’s is starting off the new year by launching three new chicken sandwiches.
Fried chicken sandwiches have been on trend in recent years, with everyone from Popeyes and Wendy’s to Chick-fil-A and KFC peddling their own spin, from crispy to spicy. McDonald’s is now trying to do one better, by releasing three different kinds of chicken sandwiches, all at once.
McDonald’s Crispy Chicken Sandwich will be available nationwide beginning Wednesday, Feb. 24, and will feature a crispy fillet. This one, geared toward fried chicken purists, will be topped with crinkle-cut pickles and served on a toasted, buttered potato roll.
There will also be a Spicy Chicken Sandwich, which will be the same fillet served with a Spicy Pepper Sauce and crinkle-cut pickles on a toasted potato roll, as well as the Deluxe Chicken Sandwich, which goes a bit heavier with the toppings: shredded lettuce, Roma tomatoes and mayo.
“We’ve heard our customers loud and clear, and we know they’re craving more chicken options,” said Vice President of Menu Innovation, Linda VanGosen, in a media statement. “We’re confident all chicken fans – from traditionalists to spice enthusiasts – will discover a new menu favorite they’ll come back for time and time again.”
McDonald’s told investors in November that it was working on boosting its chicken offerings, as that category seemed to be doing better than beef, but the chain had already been testing a version of the new chicken sandwich in December 2019 in Houston, Texas and Knoxville, Tennessee.
And so, it seems, the fast-food fried chicken wars have carried over into 2021 — and forcefully so. Earlier this week, Taco Bell launched a Crispy Chicken Sandwich Taco, and last week, Wendy's debuted its Jalapeño Popper Sandwich and Burger King announced that it would be releasing a Hand-Breaded Chicken Sandwich later this year.