Fastest Drive-Thrus in America: Taco Bell and KFC

According to a recent survey of drive-thru customers, Taco Bell and KFC ranked #1 and #2 respectively among the top 10 drive-thru chains in the U.S. Taco Bell recorded a total time through drive-thru of 268 seconds and KFC, 272 seconds. The next closest was Carl’s Jr/Hardee’s with 286 seconds. Chick-Fil-A rounded out the top 10 at 541 seconds.

The FoodserviceResults team, in partnership with QSR magazine, conducted a comprehensive, nationally representative survey of drive-thru consumers in the U.S. using an online survey sample. Additionally, onsite audits were conducted in July 2021. Leveraging insights from numerous industry experts, the finalized survey was completed by 1,007 drive-thru consumers during fieldwork.

Taco Bell Kicks Off Sauce Packet Recycling Initiative

Taco Bell is moving to reduce waste that ends up in landfills by kicking off a partnership with TerraCycle, a major recycling company, which will make it very easy for customers to send in their single-use sauce packets for recycling. About 8.2 billion packets of Taco Bell sauce are used in the United States each year. Thanks to this partnership, Taco Bell sauce packets could soon go on to have a second life as outdoor furniture, a plastic shipping pallet, storage container, flooring tile, or material used at playgrounds and athletic fields.

Customers will be able to take these steps to recycle sauce packets:

1) Sign up for a TerraCycle account.
2) Collect empty sauce packets in a box.
3) Once your collection box is full, log into your TerraCycle account to download and print a free shipping label.
4) Ship your box via UPS.

Pizza Hut Names New CEO

Yum! Brands announced Thursday that Kimberly-Clark veteran Aaron Powell will take over as Pizza Hut’s CEO effective September 20.

Powell, the former president of Kimberly-Clark’s Asia-Pacific Consumer Business, is succeeding Artie Starr, who joined Topgolf as CEO in April. The new Pizza Hut leader will report to Yum! CEO David Gibbs and will assume global responsibility for driving growth strategies, franchise operations, and performance.

Crispy Chicken Sandwich Taco Available September 2nd

Beginning September 2, Taco Bell’s Crispy Chicken Sandwich Taco will be available nationwide at participating locations for a limited time after testing earlier this year in Nashville, Tennessee, and Charlotte, North Carolina.

On Sept. 4 Taco Bell will use two real college debate teams from the University of Georgia and Clemson University to go head to head in the name of ‘Team it’s a Sandwich’ and ‘Team it’s a Taco’. “The Great Crispy Chicken Sandwich Taco Debate” will air on Saturday, Sept. 4 during the Georgia vs Clemson primetime college football game on ABC (7:30 p.m. ET), via a :60 and three :30 ad spots.

“Our new crispy chicken innovation is far from the average chicken sandwich, and we’re certain it will get a spicy reaction from sandwich and taco fans alike,” says Liz Matthews, Taco Bell’s Global Chief Food Innovation Officer. “Even the masterminds from our test kitchen couldn’t decide if it was more taco or sandwich, which is why we’re excited to bring in the debate team experts to have some fun.”

The Crispy Chicken Sandwich Taco features all-white meat crispy chicken marinated in jalapeño buttermilk, seasoned with bold Mexican spices and rolled in a crunchy tortilla chip coating. It’s served on a warm soft flatbread shaped in an iconic taco form and flavored with Taco Bell’s signature creamy chipotle sauce. Enjoy it Regular or Spicy with crunchy jalapeño slices for those who want an extra kick.

You can find it a la carte for $2.49, Buy 2 for $4.49 or in a Crispy Chicken Sandwich Box for $5.49, which includes a Beefy 5-layer Burrito, Crunchy Taco and medium fountain drink.

Pizza Hut Brings Back Detroit-Style

Detroit-Style pizza is back at Pizza Hut for a limited time beginning August 25th – and now with the option to create your own personal recipe with up to five topping combinations.  Each pizza is rectangular-shaped, served with cheese all the way to the edge creating a caramelized crust, loaded with toppings and topped with a premium vine-ripened tomato sauce.

Breakfast is back @ Taco Bell…with help from Lil Nas X

Taco Bell is bringing back breakfast and launching a campaign with former Taco Bell employee Lil Nas X as its newest spokesperson. Monday morning, the restaurant announced the Grammy-winning musician is now Taco Bell’s “Chief Impact Officer,” a role that allows him to “collaborate on the brand experience from the inside out.”

“Lil Nas X knows the job, the experience and the culture Taco Bell creates for its fans – including its people,” Taco Bell CEO Mark King offered in a press release. “This unique partnership will deliver on more than just marketing, allowing us to tap into the genius of Lil Nas X to inspire our team members and align with our commitment to unlocking opportunities for young people.”

The campaign begins August 23rd with an initial 60-day push for the breakfast line to coincide with Lil Nas X’s upcoming Montero album release. Breakfast items include Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burritos, Hash Brown Toasted Breakfast Burritos, and Grande Toast Breakfast Burritos.

Study Shows KFC and Taco Bell Lead with Shortest Drive-Thru Wait

A new study from SeeLevel HX tracked fast-food drive-thru wait times.  KFC and Taco Bell customers spent less time waiting than others. KFC led the other nine restaurants included in the study, with Taco Bell coming in second. The average drive-thru wait time of the 10 tested brands was 356.8-seconds. The complete results are here (shown in seconds):

  • KFC – 283.3
  • Taco Bell – 310.2
  • Hardee’s – 321.6
  • Carl’s Jr. 341.6
  • Burger King – 344.3
  • McDonald’s – 349.3
  • Dunkin’ – 351.7
  • Wendy’s – 358.7
  • Arby’s – 394.2
  • Chick-fil-A – 488.8

Iron Chef Turns Taco Bell Into a Gourmet Meal

Top Chef and Iron Chef America star, Susur Lee recently launched a video series which sees Susur reimagine familiar fast food into gourmet meals has taken off on TikTok. In one of the videos, Susur is seen learning about Taco Bell‘s menu offerings before giving the items provided a try. With a Bean Burrito, various tacos, Crunchwrap Supreme, Fries Supreme, Cinnamon Twists and sauces, the chef creates an original two-course meal. Watch Susur Lee turn Taco Bell into a gourmet meal.

The Big Dinner Box is Back at Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut is bringing back one of its most popular menu items – the Big Dinner Box. With two medium, one-topping rectangular pan style pizzas, boneless wings and breadsticks, the Big Dinner Box is sure to satisfy. With price varying by location, the Big Dinner Box is available for a limited time at participating Pizza Hut locations.