The Chicken Sandwich Wars

Popeyes Classic Chicken Sandwich
Popeyes Classic Chicken Sandwich

You might have heard of the now-infamous Chicken Sandwich Wars, an arms race of chickeny-goodness – first initiated by Popeye’s back in 2019. That single sandwich launch reported earned the brand an extra $400,000 in sales per location, and more than $200 million in free social media buzz. That all adds up to the competition furiously scribbling down notes to work out how to take a slice of the action.

At this point every single fast food chain has either launched a competing sandwich or has plans to launch one soon – and we’re keeping track. Here are all the entrants into this hotly contested space.

We’ve include all the new fried and grilled chicken sandwiches we know about for the last year or so here:

Burger King – Hand Breaded Chicken Sandwich

BK's new Hand Breaded Chicken Sandwich
BK’s new Hand Breaded Chicken Sandwich

Some two years in the making, the King announced in February 2020 that they hoped to replicate the success of their iconic Whopper with an all new hand-breaded offering. There’s no release date set yet, but we’ve previously heard May 2021 floated in industry press. Here’s more info.

Jimmy John’s – Smokin’ Kickin’ Chicken

Jimmy john's Smokin Kickin Chicken
Jimmy john’s Smokin Kickin Chicken

While not in the mold of the regular fried chicken patty on a bun – Jimmy John’s clearly didn’t want to feel left out of the Chicken Wars. This all new fiery sub with kick hit menu boards in February 2021. It’s expected to run until March, read more here.

Boston Market – Nashville Hot Crispy Chicken Sandwich

Boston Market Nashville Hot Crispy Chicken Sandwich
Boston Market Nashville Hot Crispy Chicken Sandwich

It’s not just fast food restaurants competing for title of best chicken sandwich. Even the sit down brands want in on the action. In late January 2021 Boston Market entered the fray with this spicy creation. Read more here.

Chick-fil-A – Grilled Spicy Chicken Deluxe Sandwich

Chick-fil-A adds new Grilled Spicy Chicken Deluxe Sandwich
Chick-fil-A adds new Grilled Spicy Chicken Deluxe Sandwich

Veering away from the fried chicken frenzy, Chick-fil-A dropped news of this all new grilled chicken sandwich in late January 2021. Their secret weapon? That chicken is marinated in spicy seasoning for an extra punch. Read more here.

Shake Shake – Korean Fried Chicken Sandwich

Shake Shack Korean Chicken in wrapper
Shake Shack Korean Chicken in wrapper

Hitting the menu in January 2021 is this sweet and spicy creation from the NYC hotshots. The sandwich isn’t really Korean style, it’s more Korean inspired. See what we thought of it in our review here.

KFC – Best Chicken Sandwich

KFC launches Best Chicken Sandwich Ever
KFC launches Best Chicken Sandwich Ever

This all new competitor from the colonel started to roll out in January 2021. The sandwich was the result of a range of testing in select markets first. The name is also unashamedly proud of those results. Read more here.

McDonald’s – Crispy Chicken Sandwiches

McDonald's Deluxe Crispy Chicken Sandwich 2021
McDonald’s Deluxe Crispy Chicken Sandwich 2021

When McDonald’s announced news that they’d be getting involved more actively in the chicken sandwich wars, no one expected the final results. In 2021 they announce three all new chicken sandwiches to put up against the competition. See more here.

Carl’s Jr. – BLT Ranch Big Chicken Sandwich

Carls Jr BLT Ranch Big Chicken Sandwich
Carls Jr BLT Ranch Big Chicken Sandwich

What makes a chicken sandwich even better? Carl’s Jr. reckons ranch and bacon, we’d be hard pressed to argue. See the details here.

Church’s – Chicken Sandwich

New Church's Chicken Sandwich
New Church’s Chicken Sandwich

Even the smaller regional guys are getting in on the action. Check out the all new chicken sandwich from Church’s Chicken here.

Zaxby’s – Signature Sandwich

Zaxby's Signature Sandwich
Zaxby’s Signature Sandwich

Zaxby’s press release for this new sandwich literally mentioned artillery shots fired. This one is all about the size and presence, check out the info here.

Habit Burger – Crispy Chicken Sandwich

The Habit Burger - Crispy Chicken Sandwich
The Habit Burger – Crispy Chicken Sandwich

Habit Burger’s entrant into the contest came toward the end of 2020. You can read our review and what we thought of it here.

Wendy’s – Classic Chicken Sandwich

Wendy's Classic Chicken Sandwich sandwich side
Wendy’s Classic Chicken Sandwich sandwich side

October 2020 saw Wendy’s launch another new chicken sandwich for fans – the simply named Classic Chicken Sandwich. The pickles set Redditors alight in argument, read our review here.

Wendy’s – Spicy Chicken Sandwich

Wendy's Spicy Chicken Sandwich
Wendy’s Spicy Chicken Sandwich

Before the Classic Chicken, Wendy’s also released this spicy chicken option. This smaller option was clearly a shot at McDonald’s dollar menu spicy chicken option. We reviewed Wendu’s new release here.

Curry Up Now – Tandoori Fried Chicken Sandwich

CURRY UP NOW Tandoori Fried Chicken Sandwich
CURRY UP NOW Tandoori Fried Chicken Sandwich

Another smaller regional operator getting in on the fun, and with a unique twist. The California based brand offered up this Indian-flavored option in September 2020.

The one that started it all – Popeyes

Popeyes Classic Chicken Sandwich
Popeyes Classic Chicken Sandwich

This sandwich is the one that started innumerable imitators across the fast food landscape. Is it still the best one out there? Here’s our recent look at the sandwich.