There are few things KFC customers love more than Hot & Spicy chicken - and the Colonel is finally beginning to capitalise on this fact. This year, the company launched its first offshoot product in the form of Hot & Spicy Chicken Nuggets. Now, its infusing that famous fiery flavour into its popcorn chicken range. At least, that's the idea in theory. Read on for our taste verdict.
Here's the spiel from KFC's website:
Bite sized pieces of real Aussie chicken breast fillet, tumbled in our special Hot and Spicy marinade and crunchy coating. This offer is not everywhere and not forever.
An average 135g serve of Hot & Spicy Popcorn Chicken packs in 1835kJ of energy, 24.7g of protein, 26.5g of fat, 25g of carbohydrates, 0.7g of sugars and 1173mg of sodium. Naturally, those numbers spike considerably when you throw in fries, a drink and other menu items.
For the purposes of this taste test, we plumped for a 1931kJ Go Bucket. (Ordering KFC without fries is not an option, natch.)
Hot & Spicy Popcorn Chicken shares the same radioactive-orange hue as the nugget version. Unfortunately, it's also just as bland. Once again, the batter isn't nearly as spicy as the boned version of Hot & Spicy and it lacks that familiar crunch. Instead, it's softer and packs decidedly less heat.
There's nothing especially wrong with this product. If you like the taste of Popcorn Chicken you wont find much to complain about.
With that said, heat addicts are going to be left bitterly disappointed. To get any kick at all, you need to pair them with a tub of Supercharged dipping sauce - at which point you might as well be eating regular Popcorn Chicken.
It's possible that my taste buds have been super-humanly fortified by extreme chilli taste tests but I kind of doubt it. Even the wimpiest palate won't break a sweat here. I'd happily serve them to my grandma.
In conclusion, this isn't KFC's best attempt at the Hot & Spicy formula. Fingers crossed for the Hot & Spicy KFC Double!
Taste Verdict: 6/10
Last week, we taste-tested an advance batch of the Chilli Factory's most hellish concoction yet. the dubiously named 'Reaper Paste'. The main ingredient is Carolina Reaper chillies — AKA the hottest pepper in the known universe. This is the story of eight men who sampled it and the hospitalisation that nearly ensued.