27 April, 2011

Burger King's New Chicken Tenders

For quite a while now, Burger King's chicken nuggety-things have been vaguely crown shaped, mostly non-descript breaded chicken pulp.  Other than shaping them like crowns,  it never seemed like BK was putting much effort into them. No one really cared, because BK didn't put much marketing into them either as they concentrated on selling burgers and sending the King out to spook people with his creepiness.

And I think people still wouldn't care about Burger King's Chicken Tenders if BK hadn't gone around pointing at them and yelling about how great the New And Improved Chicken Tenders are.  Thing is, they're not all that "new and improved," they're just "different from how they were."

It's clear that BK is trying to mimic McDonald's Chicken McNuggets with their new Tenders. They've given up the sorta-crown in favor of the slightly randomized blobtangle shape Mickey D's has used forever. BK and McDonald's both can call it "white meat" all they want. There are a lot of inferior places on the top end of a bird where you can find "white meat," and because the Tenders are made with chopped and formed chicken, I'd say chances are pretty good that both the King and the Clown are already familiar with some of those places.

Both products share that "kind-of-like-chicken-but-more-like-bouillon" flavor that lots of fast-food chopped/formed chicken has, and there are other similarities to the McNugget as well. The Chicken Tenders are drier and less spongy in texture than their McDonald's counterpart, but the coating is quite similar: The seasoning seems to be (lots of) salt, a little pepper, and that's it.  Burger King really isn't trying all that hard here.

I should probably also mention the sauces that are available, but they're every bit as "meh" as the chicken.  There's generic "Ranch," Burger King's standard "BBQ Sauce" (cheap, smoke-flavored corn syrup), "Sweet and Sour" (not even as good as those little packets the Chinese take-out tosses into your bag by the handful), "Zesty" (a completely WTF flavor that defies definition - also, it's orange), "Buffalo" without the heat, and "Honey Mustard" (like dollar-store honey mustard poured right out of the jar.) It's like Burger King was going out of their way to be unremarkable.


C. said...

I ordered those without thinking twice, but when I was reading the tray liner while eating them I thought to myself shouldn't chicken tender be chicken breasts cut into strips and slightly tough instead of spongy?

Tampa Bay Food Monster said...

*sigh* it's just so disappointing. i yearn for their classic tenders (mostly from nostalgia)... and they give us this. you're right... it's like they're trying as hard as they can to be ordinary. maybe they're catering to children under five?

Nethead said...

I ate a 4-pack of these once, because I had a free coupon. I can honestly say they were worth every penny I paid.(LOL) Dunked them in ketchup instead of the sauces. The ketchup at Burger King is one of the standard brands, and thus edible. The tenders were really hot when I got them, which disguised some of the worst bits about them.