We Tried KFC's Chicken Quesadilla So You Don't Have To

KFC's Chicken Quesadilla and sauces
KFC's Chicken Quesadilla and sauces - Michael Palan/Daily Meal

A quesadilla on the menu of KFC sounds like an idea borrowed from sister brand Taco Bell. However, the concept originally began as the Chickadilla at KFCs in Spain and Portugal in 2019. Four years later, KFC's home country is testing its own take called the Chicken Quesadilla. This American version features the chain's delicious fried chicken, cheese, and gravy, sandwiched together in a toasted tortilla.I had the rare opportunity to visit KFC's headquarters earlier this year and was treated to sneak previews of some of the coming menu attractions. One item just happened to be the Chicken Quesadilla, which sounded like a winner. Who doesn't love a good quesadilla, especially when it's made with some of the chain's most popular items? The successful test taste at HQ left me with hope about this product's future, and now that it's out in the wild, I wanted to know if it was ready for the limelight.I am lucky enough to live in a test market for the Chicken Quesadilla, so I hopped on over to my local Manhattan KFC to try its current iteration. This chew and review was based on taste, originality, comparison to the one I previously tried at KFC headquarters, and its overall viability and lovability.

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What Does KFC's Chicken Quesadilla Taste Like?

KFC's Chicken Quesadilla
KFC's Chicken Quesadilla - Michael Palan/Daily Meal

I removed the Chicken Quesadilla from its plain paper sleeve. It was not much to look at, as mine was poorly sliced, and had oddly placed toast marks in only about a third of the tortilla's surface. While its presentation and perforations weren't perfect, the pieces did easily pull apart. It then became immediately apparent how meager the contents of this quesadilla were. The small sliver between the pressed sides of the tortilla revealed stringy pieces of chicken in a mess of a thick brown liquid. Somewhere in there was a three-cheese blend, but it was not fully present.

My first bite tasted like a savory helping of Thanksgiving turkey, complete with some salty gravy drippings. It had a familiar KFC flavor to it, but I don't think the shredded chicken did it any favors. I felt like this quesadilla would have been better served if the chicken pieces were chunked, to add a bit more substance to a bite.

Sadly, the Chicken Quesadilla I ate right at the store was mostly lukewarm, which didn't help to sell it on me. Since I was gifted with two sides of sauce, I attempted to spice things up by dipping the quesadilla in them. Both the Sticky Chicky Sweet n' Sour Sauce and the Classic Ranch ended up dominating the taste of any subsequent bite of the Chicken Quesadilla.

How To Buy KFC's Chicken Quesadilla

KFC's Chicken Quesadilla and kiosk
KFC's Chicken Quesadilla and kiosk - Michael Palan/Daily Meal

The Chicken Quesadilla is currently being tested at select participating KFC locations in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Tennessee. They will remain on the menus for an unspecified time, while supplies last.

KFC's Chicken Quesadilla can be found on the menu under "Special Offers" and "Combos." It can be ordered when KFC starts serving lunch, until the store closes for the day. Ordering can take place in-store, at the counter, through a kiosk, or drive-thru where available. Advance ordering for Quick Pick-Up can be placed through KFC's app or website. Delivery may also be an option in certain areas, where additional fees may apply.

The suggested a la carte retail price for the Chicken Quesadilla is $4.49, which includes two dipping sauces of your choosing. It has 480 calories and 29 grams of protein. For $8.49, it can be turned into a combo, which includes fries or a side of your choice, and a medium drink. Prices may vary per location.

Our Final Thoughts On KFC's Chicken Quesadilla

KFC's Chicken Quesadilla at HQ
KFC's Chicken Quesadilla at HQ - Michael Palan/Daily Meal

Having tried the Chicken Quesadilla at KFC's headquarters' test kitchen (as seen in the picture above), and then all over again months later in one of its stores, it felt like I ate two completely different versions of the same thing. The one at HQ was perfectly designed and executed. It also had a winning taste that justified its reason for being. The one I tried in the test market seemed to be a shadow of its former self. Maybe the Chicken Quesadilla I received was missing something. Regardless, mine mainly seemed way too limp, and even unattractive by comparison to the original.

I still believe there is a great product that lies within a Chicken Quesadilla by KFC, at least in theory. In its current stage, perhaps it just needs a bit more finessing, and a lot more filling. The dip options are solid choices for most KFC products, but don't exactly align with this particular one. It would have been fun to see a side of spicy cranberry sauce paired with the quesadilla. I'd also like to see a future version where the gravy is omitted and replaced with something more tangy like a barbecue sauce. Another idea would be to skip the sauces all together, and make this all about what makes a quesadilla a quesadilla — lots of gooey cheese. KFC already made a Mac & Cheese wrap, so surely it can noodle around with the idea of including a smattering of it in a quesadilla.

Read the original article on The Daily Meal.