Takeaway Truth: KFC’s The Mighty Burger

Takeaway Truth is an occasional Lifehacker feature where we compare marketing images against what you actually get served. Today: KFC’s The Mighty burger.

Fast food restaurants have been known to gild the lily when it comes to accurate depictions of their menu items. Far too often, the mouth-watering feast on the poster turns out to be a limp and oily morsel. In a bid to keep the fry-jockey overlords honest, we’ve decided to document the reality of fast food — it was either that, or go postal like Michael Douglas in Falling Down.

The Mighty is being billed as KFC’s biggest and juiciest burger yet. It consists of an extra-large Zinger “thigh and drum” fillet, a rasher of bacon, lettuce, red onion, BBQ sauce, cheese, mayo and lettuce on an extra-large bun. Like the infamous “Double/” burger, KFC is marketing the Mighty primarily at male customers, as the below advertisement attests:

The Mighty packs in 2989kJ of energy, 33.6g of fat and 2401mg of sodium making it one of KFC’s most indulgent menu items. So how does the real thing compare to the marketing?

Here’s what KFC’s The Mighty looks like in the advertising image:

And here’s what we actually got served at a Town Hall NSW restaurant:

Here’s a side-by-side comparison:

Now, if we wanted to be obstinate and bloody-minded, the KFC Mighty burger would score a big fat zero based on size difference alone. But it’s fair to say that no reasonable person would expect their burger to be several times larger than their head. (Hell, in one image it even dwarfs Sydney’s entire coastline — this is obviously inaccurate, but we wouldn’t call it deliberately misleading.)
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That said, there’s clearly an implication that this is a colossal burger — perhaps the biggest you’ll ever wrap your hands around. In reality, it’s not that much bigger than a Big Mac or Zinger.

Most similar-priced pub burgers would easily match it in a weigh-off. In other words, the poster is still fibbing even if you don’t take the burger’s scale literally.

When it comes to ingredient similarity, the Mighty isn’t the worst KFC example we’ve seen — compared to the Parmy Stacker Burger and Nacho Box this thing is practically a doppleganger. (Mind you, the Parmy Stacker Burger makes chalk and cheese look like dopplegangers so that really isn’t saying much.)
One glaring difference is the positioning of the cheese, onion and lettuce. Instead of being nestled on top, they were buried under the chicken and bacon on the bottom bun, which made for extra-greasy salad. This is swiftly becoming one of Takeway Truth’s pet peeves. Seriously, how hard is it to remember the order of ingredients layers? It seems that hardly any fast food workers are capable of this feat.

Our other main gripe concerns the size ratio of the buns compared to the fillings. In the poster, the bun can barely contain all that lettuce, onion and meat while in reality you can barely see any of it. In other words, you’re either getting smaller chicken or bigger bread buns — either way, it’s deceptive marketing.

Incidentally, if you’re curious to find out how the KFC Mighty tastes, I would strongly recommend against it. The thigh and drumstick fillet is about as appetising as it sounds (also, how do they mix multiple chicken parts into a single fillet? The meat isn’t minced. It’s not really something I want to think about.)

Like KFC’s ill-fated boneless range, the meat is a revoltingly off-colour medley of pink and brown instead of the usual succulent white. Here’s what you’re confronted with after taking a bite:

I can also confirm that the burger is distinctly ungentle on the way out — shortly after eating this meal I found myself trapped on a train without any toilets. I came this close to causing a bio-hazard that would have shut down the entire train network. Best avoided.

Truth rating: 5/10

Which fast food franchise or menu item would you like us to tackle next? Let us know in the comments section below.

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