Jack in the Box’s menu board has seen a number of deep fried finger food on it. Oh, let me count the salty, greasy ways. Stuffed jalapeños, mozzarella cheese sticks, chicken nuggets, egg rolls, chicken strips, onion rings, corn dogs, and now we can add their new Pizza Bites.
Yes, Jack in the Box is now offering something you might find being served as an appetizer at the birthday party of an 8-year-old. And, yes, it does seems like the fast food chain is heavily influenced by the finger food section in the frozen food aisle, and I look forward to Jack in the Box’s version of taquitos and Smucker’s Uncrustables.
Jack in the Box’s Pizza Bites are stuffed with the following stalwarts of pizza: pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, oven-dried tomatoes, garlic, and herbs. The exterior is called “pizza dough” on the fast food chain’s website, but it looks like the coating found on other deep fried finger foods. They come in either three or six pieces and are accompanied with a container (or containers if your get the six-piece offering) of Jack’s Buttermilk House Sauce. According to the press release, they were supposed to come with marinara sauce, but I didn’t receive any.
Their almost equilateral triangular-shape makes them easy to dip and, if you don’t have piece of paper around because you’re trying to live a “paperless” lifestyle, a decent replacement for a paper football. It will also make a game of paper football much more interesting if the loser has to eat the football, which will have landed on the ground enough times to collect hair, dirt, and possibly disease.
The first time I tried the Pizza Bites they looked a little burnt, as if they were toasted over a campfire, but the innards were perfectly gooey. I decided to give them another try from another location and got pieces that were as golden brown as the skin of a 20-something sunbather. However, while they looked good, the innards appeared dried up like the skin of 60-year-old lifelong sunbather.
During both tastings, I found the breaded dough to be thick and slightly chewy with a strong crunch. I also thought the exterior did a wonderful job of muting the flavors of the cheese, pepperoni chunks, and oven-dried tomatoes. It’s a little strange there wasn’t some kind of sauce within the confines of the Pizza Bites, which could’ve made a difference. Heck, the marinara sauce probably would’ve helped. Since the Pizza Bites weren’t bursting with pizza flavor, but bursting with crust flavor, I was glad it came with the supplied Buttermilk House Sauce.
To be honest, even if I got perfectly prepared Jack in the Box Pizza Bites, I’d bet they’d have an unsatisfying pizza flavor that would make me yearn for a regular pizza…or crash an 8-year-old’s birthday party to get some appetizers.
(Nutrition Facts – 6 pieces – 500 calories, 189 calories from fat, 21 grams of fat, 7 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 43 milligrams of cholesterol, 1969 milligrams of sodium, 413 milligrams of potassium, 56 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, 7 grams of sugar, and 22 grams of protein.)
Item: Jack in the Box Pizza Bites
Purchased Price: $3.89
Size: 6 pieces
Purchased at: Jack in the Box
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: More deep fried finger food at Jack in the Box. Crunchy crust. Makes a good ball replacement for paper football. Lots of cheese. Buttermilk House Sauce makes them decent, but it really should taste like pizza.
Cons: Breaded crust mutes other flavors. Cooking inconsistencies. No sauce inside the Pizza Bites. Deep fried finger food at Jack in the Box seems tame compared with deep fried finger food at county fairs. Do not eat the six piece one by yourself; share it with someone. Losing paper football and eating the Pizza Bites that’s fallen to the ground too many times.