I Compared the Fried-Chicken Sandwiches From 3 Fast-Food Chains

A dense bun landed McDonald’s at the bottom of this ranking.



McDonald’s crispy chicken sandwich.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider


While the bun McDonald’s chose for this sandwich was pleasantly sweet, it was also dense and damp from the steam that gathered inside the foil-lined packet. I thought the chain’s classic hamburger bun would have been a better choice.

The fillet was nice and crispy, as advertised, and had a flavor profile reminiscent of other chicken products at the chain.

It came dressed with pickles and without sauce.



An open-faced view of McDonald’s crispy chicken sandwich.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider


Pickles provided some acidity to this sandwich, but they were thin and small, so their flavor came through only in certain bites.

While I do appreciate the opportunity to choose your own saucy adventure, I believe the flavors of the sandwich would have benefited from something tangy and sweet.

In my opinion, it felt incomplete without sauce.

The breading on Wendy’s chicken sandwich wasn’t as enjoyable as McDonald’s, but it was an overall better sandwich.



Wendy’s classic chicken sandwich.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider


The golden fry on Wendy’s fillet looked like it would be crisp and filled with flavor. Unfortunately, only half of my predictions came true.

It had a flavor similar in sweetness to McDonald’s sandwich, but the texture didn’t hold up. It wasn’t super crispy or crunchy, just a bit limp and soft.

The bun — dark, slightly chewy, light, and fluffy — helped salvage this sandwich.

The addition of pickles, mayo, lettuce, and tomato made it feel and taste more complete.



An open-faced view of Wendy’s classic chicken sandwich.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider


The three pickles and the tangy mayo offered acidity, and the lettuce and tomato brought freshness.

While this wasn’t a perfect sandwich, and it wasn’t bursting with flavor in every bite, it did satisfy my craving.

The simplicity and flavor execution of Burger King’s sandwich landed it in the top spot.



Burger King’s Ch’King sandwich.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider


Visually, this sandwich blew the others out of the water. A large, rippling, golden piece of fried chicken sat between two halves of a sweet bun, topped with two large pickle chips and a tasty sauce.

The fillet had a luxe and crunchy exterior, while the bun was soft and pillowy.

Pickles and sauce enhanced the crunchy texture of the statement-making breading.



An open-faced view of Burger King’s Ch’King sandwich.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider


A small amount of sauce that tasted like a mix of honey mustard and mayonnaise on both the top and the bottom buns made for a well-rounded flavor experience.

I also appreciated the size of the pickle chips here. They were big enough to cover most of the chicken and ensure a briny bite almost every time — almost.

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