In the spirit of “giving people what they want,” Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) announced Wednesday the imminent return of the KFC Double Down Sandwich.
Technically, it’s not a sandwich. At least not according to Merriam-Webster’s definition of the word. The protein and fat compilation is not contained within slices of bread or between halves of a bakery bun.
The company describes the Double Down thusly: “two of KFC’s Extra Crispy, 100 percent white meat filets, two slices of cheese, two pieces of crispy, hickory-smoked bacon, with either the Colonel’s real mayo or spicy sauce.”
Nary a speck of vegetation in sight on this baby.
The Double Down originally debuted in 2010 as a special limited-time offer and was an instant hit, selling more than 10 million “sandwiches” in the first month. After making an encore appearance in 2014, the Double Down was again retired from the menu. Though gone, it was not forgotten by its die-hard fans, who petitioned for its return.
“The Double Down is one of the most buzzworthy fast food menu items ever,” Nick Chavez, chief marketing officer for KFC U.S., said in the KFC press release announcing the Double Down’s return.
“After nearly a decade of people begging for its return, we’re embracing the chaos, bringing back our most iconic sandwich ever for just four weeks,” he added.
When the behemoth “sandwich” was first unleashed on the public, it was seen as absurd and decadent, as Eater.com pointed out. However, by today’s standards, it’s pretty typical fast-food fare, nutritionally speaking.
The previous version of the Double Down, made with Original Recipe chicken instead of the Extra Crispy variety, reportedly came in at 540 calories, 1,380 milligrams of sodium, and 10 grams of saturated fat.
KFC has not been forthcoming with the nutritional content of the latest iteration of the Double Down, saying that it does not provide that information for its limited-time menu offerings, according to USA Today. However, the news outlet reported that the new Double Down clocks in at 950 calories.
That is far more than a McDonald’s Big Mac at 550 calories. The Burger King BK Quad Stacker, which features four beef patties, bacon, cheese, and “Stacker” sauce on a bun, comes close to the Double Down at 820 calories. But a Five Guys Bacon Cheeseburger beats them all, coming in at 1,060 calories.
Most likely, the calorie count of the Double Down is not a major concern to anyone planning to eat it, though it probably should be. A 2019 study published in The New England Journal of Medicine projected that “nearly 1 in 2 U.S. adults will have obesity by 2030, and … severe obesity will affect nearly 1 in 4 adults.”
While it seems that the fast-food industry is doing its best to help Americans reach that milestone, it’s not really fair to lay all the blame for the nation’s worsening obesity crisis at its feet. After all, fast-food retailers are just giving people what they want.
“For years, the fried chicken chain has been listening to fans clamoring for the return of the Double Down, making their voices heard via passionate petitions and across social media, and KFC is answering the call,” KFC explained in the press release.
For customers who are not ready to give up their buns just yet, KFC is also debuting a new, limited-time-only “premium Bacon & Cheese Chicken Sandwich,” which is served on a brioche bun.
The Double Down drops on March 6 for a limited four-week run.
For those eager patrons who couldn’t wait one extra day for the deep-fried and potentially artery-clogging concoction, KFC offered reservations for fans to try one on March 5.
A limited number of Double Downs were available for the first 2,014 fans who registered in advance. The website opened on Thursday, March 2, and by Friday the slots had been filled.
And the morbidly obese continue to ride in the electric scooters at Walmart while shopping for more junk food to stuff in their faces because they can’t walk anymore.
That “sandwich” is just stupid.