REVIEW: Burger King Crispy Chicken Snack Wraps (Honey Mustard and Ranch)

Burger King Crispy Chicken Snack Wrap (Ranch and Honey Mustard)

I just spent the last hour reading about trademarks on Wikipedia and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website. While staring at pages that had very little pictures, I learned about “trade dress” and “trade dilution.” However, I didn’t learn why Burger King can offer their new Ranch and Honey Mustard Crispy Chicken Snack Wraps when McDonald’s was first to offer Ranch and Honey Mustard Snack Wraps and owns the “Snack Wrap” trademark.

Well, I don’t know whether McDonald’s really owns the trademark because while using the USPTO’s Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) I learned McDonald’s registered the Snack Wrap trademark in 2007, but also learned they abandoned the trademark in 2007. To be honest, I don’t know what any of that means.

Also, to be honest, I didn’t really spend an hour learning about trademarks. For 15 minutes I read about trademarks, got extremely bored, spent five minutes reading a Wikipedia entry about parkour, then wasted 15 minutes watching European parkour videos on YouTube, followed by six minutes of attempting parkour, and then spent 19 minutes on the ground in pain after tripping on a fence I tried to jump over.

But let’s not dwell on my poor athletic ability, but instead focus on whose Snack Wraps are better: McDonald’s or Burger King.

A McDonald’s Snack Wrap brings together one of their Chicken Selects Premium Breast Strips with shredded lettuce, a shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese blend, either McDonald’s ranch or honey mustard sauce, and a flour tortilla. Burger King’s Snack Wraps combine seven lettuces, one of their new Chicken Strips, a three-cheese medley, and either Ken’s Ranch Dressing or Ken’s Honey Mustard Dressing in a white flour tortilla.

Who’s Ken?

This is Ken.

After pulling out the Burger King Snack Wraps from their paper wrapping, I was surprised by how small they were. They were shorter than McDonald’s Snack Wraps. Because of their size, I felt the $2.29 I paid for each was a slight ripoff. Of course, here on this rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, we tend to have higher prices for things, so you’ll probably pay less than I did. But even at two dollars, these are still a little pricey since I pay $1.49 for a McDonald’s Snack Wrap.

Burger King Crispy Chicken Snack Wrap (Ranch and Honey Mustard) Closeup

Maybe it’s pricier because of the seven lettuces Burger King stuffed into each Snack Wrap. Or, in other words, it takes more green to make these Snack Wraps more green.

I’m sorry for the previous sentence.

However, in both Snack Wraps I purchased, I only counted only two different leafy vegetables. Mind you, I only know of three lettuces: dark green, light green, and red. However, even those two were a colorful step better than McDonald’s one iceberg lettuce. As for the cheese, it didn’t seem to do much to enhance the flavor and the flour tortilla was just like the one McDonald’s offers. I would like to say it would’ve been nice if the tortilla was warmed up.

The chicken strip in the Burger King Snack Wraps had a pleasant crispy exterior, but the meat inside was dry and a little tough. The chicken was marinated, and I could taste some of it while mowing through each Snack Wrap, but most of the Snack Wrap’s flavor comes from Ken’s dressings, which were tastier than their McDonald’s counterparts. Ken’s Honey Mustard had a stronger flavor and more mustard spiciness, while Ken’s Ranch Dressing was mild, but it still made the McDonald’s ranch sauce taste a little watered down.

So if I had to choose between Burger King’s and McDonald’s Snack Wraps, which would I choose? I’d have to pick the McDonald’s Snack Wraps, because their flavors aren’t vastly inferior compared with BK’s Snack Wraps, they’re cheaper, I have the option of getting grilled chicken, and they have fewer calories, fat, saturated fat, and sodium.

Update: Grilled chicken is now being offered. Grilled chicken was not available when this review was posted.

How much less do they have?

The McDonald’s Crispy Honey Mustard Snack Wrap has 330 calories, 15 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, and 700 milligrams of sodium, while the Burger King Crispy Chicken Honey Mustard Snack Wrap has 390 calories, 21 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, and 990 milligrams of sodium.

Overall, Burger King’s Snack Wraps are a tasty addition to the menu, even though they’re pretty much photocopied versions of McDonald’s Snack Wraps.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 snack wrap – Honey Mustard – 390 calories, 21 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 990 milligrams of sodium, 37 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of sugar, and 12 grams of protein. Ranch – 370 calories, 21 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 1,060 milligrams of sodium, 33 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of sugar, and 12 grams of protein.)

Item: Burger King Crispy Chicken Snack Wraps (Honey Mustard and Ranch)
Price: $2.29 each
Size: N/A
Purchased at: Burger King
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Honey Mustard)
Rating: 6 out of 10 (Ranch)
Pros: Really good Ken’s Honey Mustard. Decent Ken’s Ranch. Crispy chicken exterior. Watching parkour videos on YouTube. Vegetation variety.
Cons: Pricey. No grilled chicken option. More calories, fat, and sodium than McDonald’s Snack Wraps. Chicken meat was dry and a little tough. Photocopied versions of McDonald’s Snack Wraps. Learning about trademarks is boring.

NEWS: Burger King’s New Menu Items Might Confuse You Into Thinking You’ve Stepped Into A McDonald’s

IMG_1073

Burger King recently unleashed their new website (site was up and running while writing this, but it appears the old version of the site is up) and with it they also debuted a gastric bomb of new products. Many of the menu items will sound familiar because, well, McDonald’s did it. So here they are:

Chicken Strips

Available in 3 or 5 pieces, the white meat chicken is marinated and battered in seasoned home-style breading. The dipping sauces available include: King Kung Pao, BBQ Roasted Jalapeño, Barbecue, Honey Mustard, Sweet and Sour, Ranch, and Buffalo. A 3-piece Chicken Strips has 360 calories, 19 grams of fat, 3.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 1,400 milligrams of sodium, and 14 grams of protein.

Crispy Chicken Snack Wraps

Burger King’s Snack Wraps combine seven lettuces, white meat chicken, a three-cheese medley, and either Ken’s Ranch Dressing or Ken’s Honey Mustard Dressing in a white flour tortilla.

The Ranch Crispy Chicken Snack Wrap has 370 calories, 21 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 1,060 milligrams of sodium, 33 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of sugar, and 12 grams of protein. While the Honey Mustard version has 390 calories, 21 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 990 milligrams of sodium, 37 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of sugar, and 12 grams of protein.

Update: Click here to read our BK Crispy Chicken Snack Wraps review

Smoothies & Frappes

Burger King Smoothies are made with real fruit and low-fat yogurt, and come in two flavors — Strawberry Banana and Tropical Mango. The Strawberry Banana Smoothie has 310 calories, 0.5 grams of fat, 73 grams of carbohydrates, 60 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein. The Tropical Mango has 330 calories, 1 gram of fat, 78 grams of carbohydrates, 63 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of protein.

Update: Click here to read our BK Fruit Smoothies review

The frappes are topped with whipped cream, swirled with syrup, and, just like the smoothies, come in two flavors — Mocha and Caramel. Both Burger King Frappes have 510 calories, 22 grams of fat, 12 grams of saturated fat, 72 grams of carbohydrates, 49 grams of sugar, and 4 grams of protein.

Update: Click here to read our Burger King Frappe review

Salads

While everything else so far looks familiar, Burger King’s new salads don’t look like they’re from McDonald’s. The salads have the option of having either Tendercrisp or Tendergrill chicken and are available in three varieties:

Chicken, Apple & Cranberry Garden Fresh Salad – Seven premium lettuces, crisp apples, dried cranberries, bleu cheese, and Ken’s Apple Cider Vinaigrette. With Tendergrill chicken it has 520 calories, 35 grams of fat, 7 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 100 milligrams of cholesterol, 950 milligrams of sodium, 35 grams of carbohydrates, 35 grams of sugar, and 35 grams of protein.

Chicken BLT Garden Fresh Salad – Seven premium lettuces (including romaine, spring mix, and iceberg), thick cut hardwood smoked bacon, tomatoes, red onions, a three-cheese medley, and Ken’s Avocado Ranch Dressing. With Tendergrill chicken it has 510 calories, 33 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 125 milligrams of cholesterol, 1,610 milligrams of sodium, 13 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of sugar, and 42 grams of protein.

Update: Click here to read our BK Chicken BLT Garden Fresh Salad review

Chicken Caesar Garden Fresh Salad – Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, Parmesan croutons, shaved Parmesan cheese, and Ken’s Citrus Caesar Vinaigrette. With Tendergrill chicken it has 490 calories, 28 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 100 milligrams of cholesterol, 1,620 milligrams of sodium, 22 grams of carbohydrates, 7 grams of sugar, and 41 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Burger King BK Chef’s Choice Burgers (Bacon & Bleu and Bacon Cheddar BBQ)

Burger King Bacon & Bleu BK Chef's Choice Burger

I shall begin this review with the true story of how I ordered the new limited-time-only Burger King Bacon & Bleu and Bacon Cheddar BBQ BK Chef’s Choice Burgers.

When I ordered the new varieties, the employee who rang me up didn’t know what burgers I was talking about, even though on the large LCD screen behind her there was an image promoting all three BK Chef’s Choice Burgers. Unfortunately, the image was part of a slideshow of Burger King’s latest products and the new burgers weren’t anywhere else on the menu board, so when I pointed them out on the screen behind her and she turned her head to look, the image changed to something else. She then gave me a look that I’ve only seen when I ask people to pull my finger. She called over the manager who verified the new burgers and pointed them out on the register.

And that’s how I consumed almost a day’s worth of saturated fat and sodium in one meal.

As for the burgers themselves, I have to say they are the best looking major chain fast food burgers I’ve seen in real life. Okay, they still look nothing like their promotional photos, but they don’t look like the smashed blobs of meat, cheese, and bread that other burgers look like in real life. Of course, my burgers could’ve been made by the slowest and most careful BK employee in the company, so yours may not look like mine.

Burger King Bacon & Bleu BK Chef's Choice Burger Closeup

The Bacon & Bleu BK Chef’s Choice Burger consists of a 5.5-ounce flame-broiled premium ground chuck patty topped with naturally smoked hardwood bacon, Wisconsin buttermilk bleu cheese, romaine lettuce, red onions, tomatoes, and mayo on an artisan-style bun. Maybe it’s the addition of the bleu cheese, but this burger sounds more deserving of the title “Chef’s Choice” than the Bacon Cheddar BBQ one.

The bleu cheese wasn’t crumbled cheese sprinkled on top of the burger, it was more of a chunky bleu cheese spread. I prefer this since the crumbles fell out of other bleu cheese burgers I’ve tried. Although the layer of bleu cheese didn’t look like much, it did pack quite a punch, so much so that it taste bud-blocked almost every other ingredients. The thick bacon slices tasted like bleu cheese. The lettuce, red onions, and tomatoes tasted like bleu cheese. A little bit of the beef patty’s flavor hit my taste buds, but it was mostly bleu cheese. The bleu cheese also made the burger taste really salty. I know. I know. Fast food burger = salty. But, it made this burger taste especially salty. In order to finish it, I had to scrape off the bleu cheese.

Burger King Bacon Cheddar BBQ BK Chef's Choice Burger

My taste buds had a much better experience with the Bacon Cheddar BBQ Chef’s Choice Burger, which is made up of the same beef patty, bacon, lettuce, tomato, red onions, mayo, and bun as the Bacon & Bleu, but also includes two slices of cheddar cheese and a BBQ sauce. The BBQ sauce is the same stuff found in BK’s Western BBQ Topper burger, which I found tasty. Speaking of ingredients found in the Western BBQ Topper, I really wish the Bacon Cheddar BBQ BK Chef’s Choice Burger also had onion rings.

Burger King Bacon Cheddar BBQ BK Chef's Choice Burger Closeup

I’ve complained several times on this blog about flavorless bacon in fast food burgers and cheese being used more as a glue to keep the burger together instead of flavor enhancement, but the thick hardwood bacon slices and mild cheddar cheese in this burger surprised me since I could actually taste both. The beef patty was dry, which is par for the course when it comes to fast food burgers, but I just like with the regular BK Chef’s Choice Burger I enjoyed the flavor of the patty. Overall, it’s a really tasty burger, thanks to the BBQ sauce, meat, cheese, and bacon combination, and it’s my favorite of the three BK Chef’s Choice Burger varieties.

While I didn’t really care for the Bacon & Bleu and enjoyed the Bacon Cheddar BBQ, there’s something that really bothered me about both burgers — the inclusion of mayonnaise. It’s completely unnecessary in either burger when both contain a topping that provides a lot of flavor (i.e. bleu cheese and BBQ sauce). The mayonnaise’s flavor is nonexistent in both burgers, so why include it? Is it there to make sure the lettuce doesn’t fall out? If not, all it really does is include more fat and sodium to burgers that already have a lot of both.

I don’t know if you can still have it your way at Burger King, but if you can, I’d suggest getting the Bacon Cheddar BBQ BK Chef’s Choice Burger without mayo and the Bacon & Bleu BK Chef’s Choice Burger without mayo and less bleu cheese.

(Nutrition Facts – Bacon & Bleu – 760 calories, 51 grams of fat, 20 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 115 milligrams of cholesterol, 1,310 milligrams of sodium, 39 grams of carbohydrates, 17 grams of sugar, and 38 grams of protein. Bacon Cheddar BBQ – 820 calories, 56 grams of fat, 22 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 125 milligrams of cholesterol, 1,800 milligrams of sodium, 45 grams of carbohydrates, 12 grams of sugar, and 40 grams of protein.)

Item: Burger King BK Chef’s Choice Burgers (Bacon & Bleu and Bacon Cheddar BBQ)
Price: $6.99 (sandwich only)
Size: N/A
Purchased at: Burger King
Rating: 4 out of 10 (Bacon & Bleu)
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Bacon Cheddar BBQ)
Pros: Tasty BBQ sauce. Tasty beef patties. Nicest looking fast food burgers I’ve seen in real life. Awesome sources of protein. Thick slices of bacon. I could taste the cheese and bacon!
Cons: Pricey. Dry beef patties. Bleu cheese overwhelms all other ingredients and makes the burger super salty. Dear Lord that’s a lot of sodium and saturated fat. Mayo was unnecessary. The number of times I typed “blue” instead of “bleu” while writing this review.

REVIEW: New Burger King French Fries (2011)

New Burger King Fries (2011)

Some people love Burger King French fries, I’m not one of them. In fact, I believe it’s the third worst way for a potato to meet its end, right behind getting potato blight and being turned into Pringles.

As I’ve confessed in previous French fry reviews and to Ronald McDonald at knifepoint, I’m a McDonald’s fry guy and think they’re far superior than fries from other major fast food chains. They’re so far ahead of the competition, they’re like Tiger Woods before all the hookers.

Over the past several years, some of the major fast food chain have released new versions of their deep fried potato sticks. Jack in the Box has done it twice, Wendy’s did it last year, and now Burger King has introduced their new French fries.

What’s new about Burger King’s fries? According to the company, they’re thicker, have a better potato flavor, and have 20 percent less sodium than their previous fries. So what they’re basically saying in a press releases’ worth of words is that their old fries sucked. And they’re absolutely correct. They had a weak potato flavor, they weren’t salty enough, and, my goodness, what the hell was up with that starchy coating that made the fries seem a little unnatural.

But Burger King’s old fries are now in the past, joining their old old fries that were available until the mid-1990s. So what about Burger King’s new fries. Are they better than their old fries? Also, are they better than McDonald’s fries?

Well, I’m happy to say Burger King’s new fries are an improvement, but it’s slight. If you liked the flavor of Burger King’s old fries, you’ll enjoy these because they pretty much taste the same and they have the same starchy coating to keep them crispy and hot for longer. The potato flavor is slightly enhanced, but I really was expecting more. And, while having 20 percent less sodium than Burger King’s previous fries helps blood pressure, it doesn’t help with the flavor.

Also while I’m talking about sodium, can someone explain to me how it’s possible for Burger King’s fries to not have much of a salty flavor, even though they have significantly more sodium than McDonald’s fries, which have a wonderful saltiness to them. A small-value serving of Burger King’s new fries has 330 milligrams of sodium, while a small serving of McDonald’s fries has only 160 milligrams. Heck, a large McDonald’s fries has 350 milligrams of sodium. This blows my mind.

New Burger King Fries (2011) Innards

Perhaps the most noticeable difference Burger King’s old and new fries is that the new fries are thicker, which obviously makes them appear more substantial than other fast food fries. But I have a problem with Burger King putting their new bigger fries in the same Frypods and sleeves Burger King put their old fries in. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel kind of gypped getting less fries.

Burger King’s new fries are thicker, but are they better than McDonald’s fries? Oh, hell no.

The thing about McDonald’s fries is that they’re addictive, like potato chips. It’s hard to stop eating them. They have a flavor that’s robust enough that it doesn’t need ketchup. When I run out of McDonald’s fries, a part of me feels sad and wishes I had more. These are things I’ve never felt towards Jack in the Box, Wendy’s, or any of the Burger King fries, even these new ones.

But, again, I have to say Burger King’s new fries are an improvement over their old fries. It’s a slight improvement, but it might be enough for me to consider being turned into Burger King fries the fourth worst way for a potato to meet its end, right behind getting blasted into a wall with a potato gun.

(Nutrition Facts – Medium size – 410 calories, 18 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 570 milligrams of sodium, 58 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of sugar, and 4 grams of protein.)

Other New Burger King French Fries reviews:
Serious Eats
Grub Grade

Item: New Burger King French Fries (2011)
Price: Part of Whopper Jr. value meal
Size: Medium
Purchased at: Burger King
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Thicker fries. A slightly improved potato flavor. Starchy coating makes the fries crunchy and hot for longer. There’s 20 percent less sodium than Burger King’s previous fries. McDonald’s fries.
Cons: Tastes almost exactly like their old fries. Doesn’t even come close to being as good as McDonald’s fries. Has less sodium, but still much more than McDonald’s fries. Starchy coating makes the fries seem unnatural. Potato blight

NEWS: Burger King Revamps Their Fries…Again; I Hope Their Onion Rings Are Next

Burger King

Update: Click here to read our new Burger King fries review

I’ll be honest. I don’t love Burger King fries. I don’t really care for the coating around them and I don’t think they’re salty enough. I pretty much consider them the starch that allows me to take breaks in between bites of a Whopper. However, maybe I won’t feel that way when I taste Burger King’s new and improved French fries.

Burger King last changed their fries in 1997, which is a long time when one compares it to Jack in the Box who have updated their fries twice since 2004. Of course, BK rival, McDonald’s has never revamped their fries. Unless you count those times when they started using a trans fat-free oil and stopped using beef fat to fry them.

BK says the new fries are larger, fluffier, and have better potato flavor than their old fries. Our pals over at Grub Grade gave the new fries a try.

While a few locations already have the new fries, they’ll be available in about 7,000 North American restaurants by December 5. The suggested price for Burger King’s new fries will remain the same as the previous version. The fries will have about 20 percent less sodium and will be cooked in trans fat-free vegetable oil.

If you’ve already tried the new fries, let us know what you think about them in the comments below.