Burger King’s chicken sandwich has been given a proper name

Burger King's hand-breaded Ch'King sandwich with lettuce and tomato sitting atop serving pouch
The non-spicy version of Burger King’s chicken sandwich, with lettuce and tomato
Photo: Marnie Shure

The Popeyes chicken sandwich. McDonald’s Crispy Chicken Sandwich. Hardee’s Hand-Breaded Chicken Sandwich. The KFC Chicken Sandwich. None of these offerings, despite their high-profile rollouts, had flashy names to go with them. Their titles are purely descriptive, and no one ever really questioned that decision. Yet Burger King, whose Hand-Breaded Crispy Chicken Sandwich we tasted last month, will launch said sandwich nationwide on June 3 under an entirely new name: the Ch’King.

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Product shot reading "The New Hand-Breaded Ch'KING" [image provided by Burger King]
Image: Burger King

Between this and the announcement that the chain is bringing back crown-shaped nuggets, it seems like Burger King is wedded to the idea of injecting its royal signifiers into the menu as much as possible. The apostrophe is a little off-putting to me, but it presumably couldn’t be spelled “Chicking” because that sounds like the act of tending to an egg incubator or something. None of this, I should say, was specified in a press release emailed to The Takeout. But it did say this:

The new hand-breaded Ch’King is finally here and available nationwide starting June 3. And ok, sure, we could have just named it a chicken sandwich, but that’s just not how we do things at BK® (See our fans’ favorite hamburger – The Whopper®).

As of this writing, though, the sandwich is still listed on the menu with its older, straightforward name. While I have no affection for the word “Ch’King,” I admit it’s less of a mouthful than ordering the “Spicy Hand-Breaded Lettuce & Tomato Crispy Chicken Sandwich,” as it is currently displayed on the website. (Pro tip: the lettuce and tomato add nothing. You want the regular spicy one, which comes with pickles.)

The press release also notes that from June 3 to June 20, customers who order the Ch’King at Burger King’s website or on the Burger King app will also receive a free Whopper with their order. This is so that the public can decide which one is the better sandwich. That’s a $4.99 value, folks.

Will customers continue to just order the “crispy chicken sandwich,” or will they embrace calling it the Ch’King? Does the word “Ch’King” come through clearly over a muffled drive-thru speaker? Worst of all, will this put the pressure on other fast food chains to debut cute, punny names for their sandwiches? Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.

Marnie Shure is editor in chief of The Takeout.

DISCUSSION

nottrappedinohio
TrappedInOhio

We have them locally and I really want to try one, but is it true that the spicy sandwich by itself is 950 calories? That almost sounds like a misprint.