Review: Chicken Dippers from Checkers
Checkers is one of those places that I always forget exists. It’s a shame too because I usually come away pleasantly surprised at the experience. For the most part, I feel that the Checkers/Rally’s restaurants do a good job at what fast food establishments should excel at. In my experiences, my local Checkers has quick drive-thru service, cheap prices and extra fair portion sizes. When I found out that Checkers was offering a combo box of chicken and fries for a couple bucks, I thought to myself, “This is what fast food is all about”. Here’s my take on new Chicken Dippers from Checkers.
Checkers describes their new Chicken Dippers like this:
Our flavorful, tender, breaded and seasoned white-meat Chicken Dippers are the tasty and fun way to dip and dunk your way to sauce satisfaction. Plus, they come with our always-awesome Famous Seasoned Fries at a price that’s hard to beat. Let the handheld Feast begin! *Not available at all locations. Prices may vary.
When the trend these days in fast food seems to lean towards going for big burgers, expensive salads and words like “artisan” being thrown around, it’s refreshing that a place like Checkers is focusing on value menu prices and sticking to the basics. Lots of fast food places are trying too hard to duke it out with business being lost to all the burgeoning fast casual spots. There isn’t anything too inventive about another style of chicken nugget, but Checkers Chicken Dippers laying on a bed of fries for my spare change seemed too good to pass up.
First issue to address with the $2 advertised Chicken Dippers… as with everything, prices may vary. Well the $2 combo box seemed too good to be true and that was made a reality when I paid $3 for mine here in Maryland. Even with the 50% price increase for me, it’s still just a few bucks and the “amazing” promo deal dropped to “good” deal range. The TV spot says the box comes with “6 delicious Dippers” and mine came with 7. I’m not sure what to make of it, but whatever the case, it’s still a pretty solid fast food item in terms of portion to price. A good amount of fries were also in my greasy box and two dipping sauces (one BBQ, one Honey Mustard).
The Chicken Dippers weren’t as scoop-shaped as I was expecting. Honestly, they are almost flat as a pancake and quite thin too. The breading doesn’t adhere to the pressed chicken breast well either and leaves almost a separate thick skin between chicken and crust. Taste-wise, you’re in for nothing too interesting. The little specks of green and red in the breading had me thinking there would possibly be a peppery-kick or some flavor not found in your run-of-the-mill chicken nuggets/strips. The seasoned crust unfortunately had absolutely nothing special about it. The only real saving grace with the Chicken Dippers is the dipping sauces and Famous Seasoned Fries. Go ahead and bury your Dippers in sauce to try and avoid the overly artificial and salty taste they present when tried solo. If you put 2 Chicken Dippers together, you might get enough chicken meat to make one chicken nugget at most fast food joints.
It’s hard to complain about an inexpensive box of chicken and fries. Finding this package for 2-3 bucks is still a pretty good deal for the amount of food you’re getting, but that’s about where the positives end. The Dippers by themselves are what’s really to be highlighted here and they are flat-out mediocre at best.
Pros: Inexpensive combo of chicken, fries and two dipping sauces.
Cons: Flat discs of chicken aren't very meaty. Breading faked me out with the red/green pepper spots.
Grubbing on-the-go: 7.25/10
Overall GrubGrade: 4.50/10
More Info: http://www.checkers.com