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Popeye's fried chicken sandwich is better than Chick-fil-A's



Photo: Kevin Pang

I am able to separate politics and food, or if we are honest, I can turn a blind eye. I think Chick-fil-A's policies are disgusting, but they are also near my house, their sandwiches and waffle fries are tasty, and my 3-year-old seems the same. It weighs my mind, believe me, but that triangulation of convenience, efficiency and quality of food takes precedence when you become a parent.

But this post is not about Chick-fil-A, thank goodness. It's about Popeyes and the new chicken sandwich. It's a sandwich that, if you feel guilty about handing over money to the Chick-fil-A corporation, you can turn to the site now, because I think it's just as good.

With both Popeyes and Chick-fil-A, you get a boneless fried chicken breast fillet and two jam slices, sandwiched between greased brioche-like buns that steam inside a foil envelope. Here the paths differ.

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Chick-fil-A's breathing is easy, and leans more on crispy than crunchy, and the flavor is driven by considerable flavor ̵

1; code for heavy MSG (for the record, I don't think this is negative). However, Popeyes has the popcorn-roofed exterior, and that spice plus fry job adds to the unmistakable "Popeyes fried" aroma. Chick-fil-A's chicken pieces also tend to be flatter slices, while Popeye's chicken breast is lying thicccc – My pieces measured almost 1 1/2 inches in height while maintaining substantial juiciness.
[19659004] Then that's how Chick-fil-A and Popeyes differentiate the standard and spicy version. Chick-fil-A's spices are integrated into the coat, while Popeyes uses a standard mayonnaise and "spicy Cajun spread" for its two sandwiches. The spicy chicken sandwich is definitely the highlight. It's warmer than most fast food definitions of spice, at a spice level that most Louisiana food lovers can at least respect. Will it burn off your tongue – no. A little bit of "Oooh yes, there it is" – yes.

In my mind, the trade-off is the taste of Chick-fil-As fried chicken versus the structural satisfaction of Popeye's fried chicken. But with the added richness of that mayo spread, Popeyes has a chicken sandwich that I think is just as flavorful by Chick-fil-A, minus the psychic shame – and in the case the spicy version, even tastier.


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