Shake Shack has finally added avocado to its menu.
You can have it in one of two new avocado and bacon dishes, or, for the first time, add it to any other burger or sandwich on the menu.
Shake Shack launched its Avocado Bacon Menu Wednesday. You can order either a burger or a sandwich with freshly-sliced avocado and Niman Ranch applewood-smoked bacon.
The burger comes a Shake Shack patty, while the sandwich adds a crispy chicken breast, lettuce, pickles, and buttermilk herb mayo to the avocado-bacon combo.
Prices depend on where you are, but at the Flatbush restaurant in Brooklyn, New York, the burger costs $7.89 for a single and $10.69 for a double, while the sandwich costs $8.79. Adding avocado slices to other menu items costs $1.25.
The two new dishes are available until June 30 at all US locations, but Shake Shack told Thrillist that the avocado add-on option was here to stay, and that avocado was one of the chain’s most requested additions.
Immediately, fans and industry experts began to notice that the new offerings seemed very similar to Chick-fil-A’s and Popeyes’ iconic chicken sandwiches. Insider’s Kate Taylor previously reported on a leaked menu that revealed McDonald’s plans to release a new chicken sandwich, saying that the chain was planning to “take a page out of Chick-fil-A’s playbook.”
Former McDonald’s chef Mike Haracz told Insider “it’s very apparent” that McDonald’s is following Chick-fil-A’s lead with its sandwich. “It comes in a foil bag just like Chick-fil-A, from what I understand it has a very similar flavor profile,” he said.
“Chick-fil-A has very strong brand loyalists,” former McDonald’s chef Mike Haracz told Insider. “I’ve sat in panels when I was doing chicken work. They will try the food, but when you tell them it’s not from Chick-fil-A they’ll say, ‘Well, I think it’s great but I’m not going to buy it because I am a Chick-fil-A consumer.” However, there are some people who might go to Chick-fil-A strictly for the flavor, and if McDonald’s can match that, they may be swayed.”
Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich, which comes served on a toasted, buttered bun with dill pickle chips, is a favorite among customers.
According to a report by Edison Trends, Chick-fil-A received more online chicken sandwich delivery orders than any other brand in most of 2020, cornering around 45% of the total online order market share.
The bun was light and fluffy and the chicken breast was the perfect thickness.
Chick-fil-A’s chicken breast was flakier as opposed to juicy. Looking at both of the sandwiches, the fillet itself also looked slightly bigger. The breading was thinner and clung to the chicken breast well, which gave it a great texture.
However, I was slightly disappointed by Chick-fil-A’s pickles — they didn’t have the strong briny flavor or crunchiness I usually look for.
Next up was the newcomer: the McDonald’s crispy chicken sandwich.
The McDonald’s crispy chicken sandwich cost $5.99 at my local chain in Brooklyn, New York.
The chicken fillet was thick – right off the bat, it looked really similar to sandwiches I’ve had from other chains.
I’ve been a fan of McDonald’s McChicken sandwiches for years, but I could already tell that I was going to like this sandwich a lot more.
The sandwich came with a few whole pickle chips on top of the chicken fillet.
The bun held the contents of the sandwich together perfectly, and in terms of size, I thought McDonald’s did a great job at nailing the bun-to-chicken ratio.
Biting in, I was immediately impressed.
The breading of the sandwich had a slight sweetness to it. However, it was perfectly balanced out by the tart, crunchy pickles, which had a strong briny flavor. The chicken was thick, juicy, and flavorful.
The only aspect of the sandwich I wasn’t totally in love with was the bun — though it was a good size, I thought it was slightly too thick. I’m of the opinion that a sandwich bun’s sole purpose is to hold everything together, without overpowering the other ingredients. I think this thicker potato bun slightly missed the mark on that.
It was really hard to say which one I liked more. However, I have to give props where props are due – McDonald’s has come out with an undeniably good chicken sandwich.
So, how similar were the two sandwiches? Pretty similar, in my opinion. If I was to do a blind taste test, I might not even know which was which, unless one was slathered in Chick-fil-A sauce. However, this is not to say that McDonald’s is in any way actively trying to copy or imitate Chick-fil-A’s most iconic offering.
The fact is that there is a trend in what consumers across the board are looking for in a chicken sandwich, whether they’re ordering from Chick-fil-A, McDonald’s, Popeyes, or any other chain.
Judging by the success of the chicken-war competitors, consumers want a Southern-inspired flavor with juicy, flavorful chicken and tart and crunchy pickles. McDonald’s definitely delivered on all counts.
As far as this food reporter is concerned, the new McDonald’s chicken sandwich stacks up well against fan favorites — and might even be a new go-to menu item.
Jack in the Box’s new chicken sandwich lineup consists of the Cluck Sandwich and the Cluck Deluxe Sandwich.
The Cluck Sandwich comes with a crispy chicken fillet, pickles, and a mystery sauce, all held together with a brioche bun.
The deluxe version has the same bun and chicken combination, with the added bonus of mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, guacamole, hickory smoked bacon, and cheddar cheese. According to Jack in the Box, these extra ingredients are a “classic hit with consumers.”
Jack in the Box has also partnered with singer and actress Becky G for a social media #JacksNewChickenDance campaign to help launch the new chicken sandwich lineup.
The Cluck Sandwich is $4.99, while the Cluck Deluxe is $6.99. Both can be upgraded to the combo version for an additional $1.