Aug 31, 2012

Frozen Friday: Lean Cuisine - Sweet & Sour Chicken

Lean Cuisine's Sweet & Sour Chicken features chicken tenderloins and veggies in a sweet and sour sauce served over rice.

A 10-ounce box displays 300 calories, 3 grams of fat, and 2g of fiber and sells for $3.29 at my local Alberston's supermarket.

News: Taco Bell - New A.M. Crunchwrap and Mountain Dew A.M.

Taco Bell restaurants serving "First Meal" (aka breakfast) have two new menu items available: the A.M. Crunchwrap and Mountain Dew A.M.

The A.M. Crunchwrap is a kitchen-sink variant of Taco Bell's signature Crunchwrap Supreme and is filled with your fast food breakfast staples including scrambled eggs, bacon or sausage, cheese and a hash brown all wrapped up. It's priced at $2.49.

I also got some questions answered regarding the A.M. Crunchwrap and you can check those out below.

News: Burger King - $1 Smoothies This Labor Day Weekend!

Burger King is offering $1 small-sized Real Fruit Smoothies this Labor Day Weekend. Along with the promotion, they are offering a new flavor: Raspberry.

The deal runs starting today 8/31/12 through 9/3/12. Price and participation may vary, and it will cost more in Alaska & Hawaii because food costs more on a chain of islands in the middle of the Pacific and way up in the Arctic North.

Aug 30, 2012

Review: Papa John's - Thin Crust Grilled Chicken Club

Papa John's Grilled Chicken Club pizza is one of their specialty pizzas, and I guess, is supposed to resemble a club sandwich sans the lettuce. I tried the thin crust version and it came topped with grilled (not breaded!) chicken strips, hickory-smoked bacon, onions, and sliced Roma tomatoes.

A large is currently $14 at my local Papa John's or $9.99 on Mondays through Wednesday.

Around the World: KFC Japan - New Fried Chicken Features Rice in the Breading

The latest thing out of KFC Japan is a fairly unique take on the Colonel's chicken with the flavor of garlic, sprinkled with fried glutinous (or sticky) rice, ground sesame, and black pepper. As far as the translation goes, the promotion is being called "chicken flavor."

News: Yoshinoya - New Yaki Udon Bowls

Yoshinoya adds new Yaki Udon Bowls to a menu better know for beef (and rice) bowls. In a Yoshinoya take on stir fry and noodles, each Yaki Udon Bowl features your choice of sliced beef or grilled chicken thighs, wok-tossed with fresh vegetables (zucchini, bok choy, cabbage, snow peas, onion and garlic), udon noodles and Yoshinoya's special sauce, and garnished with ginger and sesame seeds.

News: KFC Chicken Littles Come to SoCal

KFC is now serving up new Chicken Littles at their southern California locations. Bearing little resemblance to the Chicken Littles of old, which were like mini chicken patty sliders, the new Chicken Littles are very similar to KFC Snackers. Each mini-sandwich consists of a mini hot-dog-bun-like roll with an Extra Crispy Chicken Strip inside along with a pickle slices, and mayo.

They're available for $1.29 each which is the same price as a KFC Snacker.

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Aug 29, 2012

Re-Review: El Pollo Loco's Crunchy Chicken Taco

I decided to re-review El Pollo Loco's Crunchy Chicken Taco since they've made it bigger, but also a little more expensive. They've re-tuned it a little bit as it no longer contains a blend of cheddar and jack cheese, but just plain jack to go with shredded lettuce and pieces of flame-grilled chicken.
They're now $1.99, up from $1.69 when they first came out in 2007, which is not bad if you consider inflation and rising food costs.

News: Krispy Kreme - Football Donuts are Back!

Providing an alternative to throwing and catching peanuts in your mouth, Krispy Kreme's Football Donuts once again make their return for football season.

Available on weekends only through February 3, 2012, at participating U.S. Krispy Kreme locations, the football-shaped yeast donuts are topped with chocolate icing, a black lace stamp, and strips of white icing.

You can get them on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday during the limited-time run. If you're playing to get over 9 dozens for some sort of huge football party, you'll want to call ahead.

News: Sonic - Half-Price Breakfast Burritos on September 4th

Sonic is offering a back-to-school special on September 4, 2012, where all of their breakfast burritos will be available at a 50% discount all day (because like Jack in the Box, Sonic serves breakfast all day long).

News: Campbell's - New Limited-Edition Andy Warhol Cans

Soup can collectors and pop art aficionados rejoice! To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Andy Warhol's famed artwork, 32 Campbell Soup Cans, Campbell's Soup is releasing a set of limited edition cans of Campbell's Condensed Tomato Soup with labels derived from Warhol's artwork.

News: Arby's - New Hot Turkey Roasters

It looks like roast turkey is staging a takeover of Arby's menu with the addition of three new Hot Turkey Roasters. Posing as the other sliced meat, Arby's Hot Turkey Roasters come in the Turkey Classic, the Turkey 'n Cheddar Classic, and the Grand Turkey Club.

To promote the new sandwiches, Arby's will be offering each guest a free Turkey Roaster sandwich of their choice when they visit Arby’s between 11:00am and 1:00pm on September 6th.

The Turkey Classic is like an Arby's Classic Roast Beef, but with slices of hot, oven-roasted turkey instead of Arby's trademark roast beef.

Aug 28, 2012

Review: Jersey Mike's - Famous Steak Philly

Jersey Mike's Famous Steak Philly is a classic-style cheesesteak with sliced steak, grilled onions and peppers.

 The price is $7.75 for a 7-inch regular sub. You can also get it with chicken instead of steak.

News: Wienerschnitzel - New Der Chicken Dippers

Wienerschnitzel now serves their own popcorn chicken: Der Chicken Dippers. Available for a limited time, the new menu item features bite-sized morsels of crispy, white-meat, boneless fried chicken. They're cooked to order and served with your choice of one of three sauces: Sweet and Tangy BBQ, Spicy Buffalo Wing, and Creamy Ranch.

Portions range from one-third pound to one pound of Der Chicken Dippers with prices starting at a suggested retail of $3.59.

Aug 27, 2012

Review: Papa John's - Buffalo Chicken Pizza

Papa John's limited-time Buffalo Chicken Pizza has returned for a second run on Papa John's pizza rotation and features ranch sauce, sliced, breaded chicken strips, bacon, onions, and mozzarella cheese, plus a rather artistic swirl of buffalo sauce.

As with most Papa John's limited-time promotion pizzas, the Buffalo Chicken is available at $10 for a large.

News: Popeyes Introduces Three New Sauces and $3.99 Tenders Combo

Popeyes debuts three new sauces and highlights their Handcrafted Tenders with their latest promotional offering: a limited-time $3.99 tenders combo with three Handcrafted Tenders, Cajun Fries, and a biscuit plus your choice of six sauces.

The new sauces are Bayou Buffalo, Blackened Ranch, and Sweet Heat. Other sauce choices include Mardi Gras Mustard, Buttermilk Ranch, and Barbeque.

News: Starbucks - Buy Four Drinks, Get One Free

Rejoice thoughtful people (or eager gofers or bright-eyed interns), Starbucks is offering a bonus for those office runs (or group orders) for coffee. In a promotion they're calling "Starbucks Runner Rewards," Starbucks is offering a free drink when you buy 4 drinks (i.e. when you make a Starbucks runs for your friends, family, or co-workers) at participating Starbucks stores.

News: Sonic - New Hickory Flatmelt Sandwiches

Sonic's latest menu items are new, limited-time Hickory Flatmelt Sandwiches. They're pretty much barbecue burgers, but folded into warm, flatbreads instead of a bun. Specifically, each Hickory Flatmelt comes with your choice of marinated sirloin steak, or grilled or crispy chicken breast, hickory BBQ sauce, bacon, cheddar cheese, and grilled onions. It's pretty much all you need in a good barbecue burger.

Sonic tends to keep their limited-time offers to about a month, so you can expect to see these at your local Sonic restaurant till at least the end of September (possibly longer).

Aug 26, 2012

Review: Ben & Jerry's - Late Night Snack

Ben & Jerry's Late Night Snack ice cream was inspired by Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, more specifically as a way of saying "thanks" for a song sung on the shoe about Vermont's Finest. Late Night Snack features vanilla bean ice cream with a salty caramel swirl and fudge-covered potato chips clusters thrown in.

My local Fresh & Easy had a sale on these: two pints for $5 (normally $3.49).

Sunday Funny: Doritos - "The Dip Desperado"

Here's an epic Doritos ad that aired last year in the U.K. It's called "The Dip Desperado" and it chronicles the rise and fall of Esteban Ortega. Check it out:

KFC Singapore Introduces New Shrimp Stars

A box of KFC Shrimp Stars.
I've heard of star-shaped chicken nuggets, but never star-shaped shrimp nuggets so here you go: KFC Singapore just started offering new Shrimp Stars.

KFC Shrimp Stars look to be a good size and are breaded and deep-fried; a good match for KFC. They're offered in a "Snackers" combo deal with 4 Shrimp Stars, fries and a medium drink for 3.95 Singapore Dollars (~$3.15 U.S.).

Aug 25, 2012

Review: Yoplait - Honey Vanilla Greek Yogurt

Yoplait's Honey Vanilla Greek Yogurt isn't technically Greek or even yogurt according to a lawsuit. Regardless, it's non-fat and features twice the protein of regular yogurt coupled with the flavor of honey and vanilla.

Oddly, one of my local supermarkets sells a 6-ounce cup for $1.49 while a similar-sized cup of traditionally made Greek yogurt (which sounds like it would cost more) which it sells for $1.29.

Around the World: Pizza Hut Malaysia - Stuffed Pan Pizza

Now everyone knows Pizza Hut is famous for their signature pan pizza, and most of us have heard of Pizza Hut's Stuffed Crust Pizza, but now the two are combined together at Pizza Hut restaurants in Malaysia for the (get this) Super Pan Pizza!

Because it's a pan pizza, the crust surrounding the stuffed filling is crispy. Inside it's piped with two different cheeses (looks like mozzarella and cheddar) along with a tangy Garlic Napoli sauce. On top, there's chicken chunks, chicken loaf (like a meat loaf, but made with chicken), caramelized pineapples, and peppers.

Aug 24, 2012

Frozen Friday: Fresh & Easy - Channa Masala

Fresh & Easy's Channa Masala is part of their Eatwell line of foods, which have lower counts of fat, sodium, and calories. It's a vegetarian frozen meal that features garbanzo beans in a spicy curry served over rice with a mix of cauliflowers and spinach on the side.

Fresh & Easy has these for pretty cheap at $1.99 for a 9.25-ounce box.

News: CiCi's Pizza - $2.99 Buffet on September 6, 2012

CiCis Pizza will be running a Guest Appreciation Day on Thursday, September 6, 2012 where they will be offering their signature pizza buffet for $2.99.

I've never been to CiCis myself (there are none nearby), but $2.99 is super cheap for all-you-can-eat pizza. Even if the pizza was bad, I find that even bad pizza is still pretty good.

News: Chicken Soup for the Soul Now Makes Chicken Soup for Your Tummy

In an ironic twist, Chicken Soup for the Soul, best known for a series of books on inspiration and improvement, have created a line of (physical and not spiritual) soups that you to buy at the supermarket.

Sadly, the line won't be called "Chicken Soup for the Body," but has seven soups slated to arrive in stores in early 2013, and looks to expand into other foodstuffs throughout 2013 and leading into 2014.

News: Original Soup Man Coming to Stores Nationally

The Original Soup Man, whose founder and original New York location is best known as the inspiration for the "Soup Nazi" Seinfeld episode and character, will soon be available in supermarkets nationwide this September.

Aug 23, 2012

Review: Papa John's Six Cheese Cheesesticks

Papa John's Six Cheese Cheesesticks are like their regular Cheesesticks, but with six cheese instead of just one. The six cheeses are: mozzarella, Parmesan, Romano, Asiago, provolone and Fontana cheese.

It doesn't look like they're six cheese on top, but I guess they're all melted together. Those little black sprinkles are Papa John's "Special Seasonings." More on that later.

Papa John's sells these in a 10-inch size for $6.50 and 12-inch size for $7.50. Each order comes with pizza sauce and garlic margarine sauce for dipping.

News: Del Taco - New Daily Dinner Deals

Del Taco offers new, limited-time Daily Dinner Deals with a different discounted offer for each day from Monday through Thursday between 3pm and 11pm.

On Monday, there's "buy one, get one free" Del Combo Burritos, which come filled with cheese, hot sauce, seasoned beef, and beans.

Aug 22, 2012

Review: Church's Chicken - Original Fried Chicken

Church's Chicken Original Fried Chicken is the original menu item for the chain; when they first opened in 1952, it was the only thing they served.

I don't know how much it cost; the nearest Church's is a bit aways from me and a guest brought a box by, so here we go...

Neat! Starbucks Japan - Portable Personal Drip Coffee Brewer

"Starbucks Origami Personal Drip coffee packaging.
In Japan, Starbucks offers an alternative to instant coffee called "Starbucks Origami Personal Drip coffee." While they have Starbucks Via as well, the Origami Personal Drip coffee is a convenient all-in-one disposable solution that brews fresh coffee anywhere as long as you have some hot water and a cup.

So how exactly does it work? Read on!

Aug 21, 2012

Review: El Pollo Loco - Chicken, Bacon & Guacamole Stuffed Quesadilla

El Pollo Loco's new Chicken, Bacon & Guacamole Stuffed Quesadilla features fire-grilled chicken, bacon, jack and cheddar cheeses, guacamole, and pico de gallo inside a grilled flour tortilla folded (Crunchwrap style) into a hexagon shape for easy eating.

My local El Pollo Loco has these for $5.49 each, which is on the pricey side for fast food.

My Starbucks is Not This Retro: Duddell St. Starbucks in Hong Kong

Starbucks has this neat concept store out in Hong Kong on Duddell St. where half the store is the typical Starbucks design and the other half is crafted to look like a bing sutt (literally "ice house" or "ice chamber").

A bing sutt is a type of Hong Kong cafe/diner popularized around 1950 to 1970, highlighting the convergence of East and West. They exist to this day, though in lesser numbers, and have traditionally served Hong Kong versions of Western comfort food as well as iced drinks, coffee, and tea.

News: Carl's Jr. / Hardee's - New Memphis BBQ Burger

Squeezing barbecue into the tail end of summer, Carl's Jr. and Hardee's now offer the Memphis BBQ Burger (well, Hardee's now offers, Carl's Jr. starts offering it tomorrow).

Touting the pairing of "meat-on-meat," the burger joins smoked, pulled pork and a charbroiled beef patty with crispy onion strings, American cheese, and Sweet Baby Ray's Memphis-Style BBQ sauce on a sesame seed bun.

Aug 20, 2012

Review: Green Burrito - Charbroiled Chicken Torta

I popped by my localCarl's Jr./Green Burrito recently to try their new Charbroiled Chicken Torta. The torta is a kind of Mexican sandwich and the Green Burrito's version takes a soft Telera roll and fills it with pieces of charbroiled chicken, guacamole, hot sauce, shredded cheese, shredded lettuce, tomato, and refried pinto beans.

The suggested retail is $3.29, but it's slightly more expensive near me at $3.59.

News: Barilla - New Shelf Stable, Microwavable Meals

If you think Barilla makes good pasta, you might be interested to know that Barilla now offers new Barilla Microwaveable Meals, made with 100% natural ingredients and no preservatives, but are magically (please don't take the "magical" bit as fact) shelf-stable.

Since they're not frozen, the meals heat up in the microwave in just 60 seconds. The pasta and sauces are separated into compartments so you can mix them as you like.

News: Pizza Hut Offers $5.99 Medium Pizza Only on Twitter

Pizza Hut is running a Twitter-only promotion for a 1-topping medium pizza for $5.99.

The deal is only available at participating locations and only through this Saturday, August 25.

You can access the deal via Pizza Hut's Twitter or by clicking here.

News: Papa John's Returns the Buffalo Chicken Pizza

It hasn't been gone for that long, but it must have been popular because Papa John's returns the Buffalo Chicken Pizza for a limited time.

The Buffalo Chicken Pizza features ranch sauce (instead of pizza sauce), sliced chicken strips, bacon, onions, mozzarella cheese and a tangy Buffalo sauce. Just an FYI, as you may notice from the picture, the "sliced chicken strips" are breaded.

Aug 19, 2012

Review: Good Humor - Mounds Ice Cream Bars

Good Humor's Mounds Ice Cream Bars are a new add to the Good Humor ice cream portfolio and consist of coconut-flavored light ice cream with coconut flakes dipped in a dark chocolate flavored coating.

There are 6 bars to an 18-fl-oz box. One of my local supermarket has these selling for a regular price of $4.29, but I raided one of these from my brother's fridge (money saved!).

Around the World: Dunkin' Donuts Korea - Monkey Banana Mini Donuts

So this summer, Dunkin' Donuts has been frying up donuts shaped like bananas in Korea. But, not just any bananas... mini bananas. They call them "Monkey' Banana" donuts (I think they mean "Monkey's Banana" or it could just be a random apostrophe).

They kinda look like bananas, but they also look like fat sausages. Maybe they should put them in a hot dog bun or roll for their next promotion.

As you can see, the promotion comes complete with a silly-looking monkey mascot.

Aug 18, 2012

Review: Twix Ice Cream Bars

Twix Ice Cream Bars are an ice cream version of the Twix candy bar. Each one features vanilla ice, caramel, and Twix cookie bits covered in a chocolaty coating.

A 11.58-fl-oz box of six retails for $4.99 at my local Ralph's. They were on sale for $2.99 though.

Around the World: McDonald's Taiwan - Hello Kitty McDonald's Plush Dolls

McDonald's x Hello Kitty in Taiwan.
While not as extravagant as the Hello Kitty Fairy Tales promotion in Hong Kong earlier this year, McDonald's Taiwan is currently offering a limited-time run of four Hello Kitty plush dolls dressed up as the McDonaldland characters.

The dolls are about 6" tall and the available characters are Ronald McDonald, Birdie, The Hamburglar, and Grimace. The Ronald and Hamburglar versions are currently available while the Birdie dolls are set to release on 8/20 with Grimace soon following after on 8/23.

Aug 17, 2012

Frozen Friday: Stouffer's - Farmer's Harvest Garlic Chicken

Stouffer's Farmer's Harvest Garlic Chicken features grilled white meat chicken, cavatappi pasta, asparagus, broccoli, and carrots in a creamy garlic sauce.

A single-serving, 12-ounce bag retails for $4.49 at my local supermarket (sale price usually about $2.50 to $3).

Around the World: The Kit Kat Chunky Peanut Butter Bar

The Canada version. The French gives it away.
So, Kit Kats come in a peanut butter version, but not in the U.S. Instead, it's available up north in Canada and across the Atlantic in the U.K. Sad, right?! It's called the Kit Kat Chunky Peanut Butter.

"Chunky" not because the peanut butter is chunky, but because the bar itself is chunkier than that standard Kit Kat bar and it comes as one big Kit Kat rather than four separable ones.

News: Burger King Offers 50 Cent Vanilla Soft Serve Cones

For a limited time, Burger King is offering their Vanilla Soft Serve Cones for only 50 cents. They're normally around a buck (price varies from location to location).

Not a bad deal to beat the summer heat.

Price and participation may vary.
Aug 16, 2012

Review: Carl's Jr. - Sweet Potato Fries

Carl's Jr. Sweet Potato Fries are a new addition to the menu this summer so I popped over to my local Carl's Jr. for a try.

A small order set me back $2.29.

News: Sonic - New Cheesesteak and Chipotle Breakfast Burritos

Sonic's Zesty Cheesesteak Breakfast Burrito and Smoked Chipotle Breakfast Burrito.
Sonic is serving two new breakfast burritos for a limited time: the Zesty Cheesesteak Breakfast Burrito and the Smoked Chipotle Breakfast Burrito.

Both are variations of Sonic's existing Steak & Egg Breakfast Burrito.

News: Kraft - Lunchables Now Available with Smoothies

Move over fruit juice! Three varieties of Lunchables now feature Chiquita Strawberry Banana Smoothies.

The smoothies are made with real fruit with no added sugar or sweeteners and count as a 1/2 cup serving of fruit.

Aug 15, 2012

Review: El Pollo Loco - Original Pollo Bowl

El Pollo Loco's Original Pollo Bowl features a bowl of seasoned rice and pinto beans topped with flame-grilled chicken breast, onions, cilantro, and pico de gallo.

It's $4.69 a bowl at my local El Pollo Loco restaurant.