Review: Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger from Wendy’s

The latest to join the Wendy’s menu is something to spice things up with the new Spicy Chipotle Crispy Chicken Sandwich and Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger.  Since I’ve always had trouble saying no to a Wendy’s burger, I figured I’d test my tongue against the Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger and see if I could track it down for the promoted 99¢ price tag.

Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger Wendy'sWendy’s describes their Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger as having “melted Pepper Jack Cheese, zesty jalapeños and a signature spicy sauce on top of juicy beef.”  While spicy fast food items aren’t really the biggest draw for me, I’ll still dabble from time to time to see if the product is able to balance flavor with heat.  I think the Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger succeeded in this area so I came away pleased.This “value” cheeseburger wasn’t priced at 99 cents at my local Wendy’s here in Maryland, but I never expect advertised prices at the locations around me anymore.  The sticker shock wasn’t as crazy as I’m used to in the case of the Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger and it was double the cost at $1.99; that should show you how badly I’ve been burned before by whacked out Wendy’s prices.  Coming in at under the 2-dollar mark was OK with me, but it will still lose some value points.

Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger Wendy's 2I do have an appreciation for Wendy’s burgers since I get a more natural beef flavor than the competition.  This burger patty was on the dry side yet didn’t bother me because it seemed to not impact its overall texture and the flavor didn’t escape.  The cheese, as you might tell from the pictures, didn’t have much of a melt to it.  This un-melty cheese issue feels extremely familiar to me when having Wendy’s.  Flavor-wise, the Pepper Jack cheese was subdued, but I feel as though I’d really miss it if this was just a hamburger. 

Spicy Chipotle WendysAny elements of spice and heat came directly from the signature spicy sauce and jalapenos.   The sauce was spot on for me as it came in at a fairly even level.  This will surely disappoint the big chile-heads out there, but I feel there will be a broader appeal when catering to the rest of us.  The flavor is smoky with a little bite which is mostly on the back-end.  I always hate when a spicy sauce burns (McDonald’s Habanero) to the tip of my tongue and I appreciate when there is something tasty to level things out.  I’ll be honest and tell you that jalapeno slices have crushed my taste buds in the past, but the Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger had a tame bunch.  Four nickel sized slivers of jalapeno peppers provided a delicate crunch and more of a salty kick than anything else.  On my wimpy heat tolerance scale, this burger came in at about a 4 out of 10.

Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger Wendy's 3 Those looking for a kick in the face of peppery heat will likely be disappointed with the Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger.  I was hoping for something with just enough heat to be noticeable, but nothing that would ruin my burger experience.  This is a cheeseburger first and a distant second for a truly spicy option.  You’re likely to be more satisfied with the premium Spicy Chicken Sandwich over this when looking to get a spicy fix.  I consider it a decent burger and if you can find it at 99 cents, it’s a really great value menu option.

Pros: Balanced flavor with a little heat. Under two bucks. Advertisted at 99 cents if you can find it.

Cons: This won't satisfy those people with a higher heat tolerance.

Taste: 7.75/10
Value: 6.50/10
Grubbing on-the-go: 7.00/10
Price: $1.99

Overall GrubGrade: 7.25/10

More Info: http://www.wendys.com
Nutrition Facts:
not yet available

23 comments on “Review: Spicy Chipotle Jr. Cheeseburger from Wendy’s

  1. Steven T. says:

    Looks decent enough. But if that’s a $1.99 in Maryland, it probably be closer to $3.00 here if not possibly more in Alaska. As decent as Wendy’s is, it’s not worth the price when their combo meals are around $10 or more.

    • Me says:

      Thanks for your valued opinion. Other than the second person here from Alaska, your comment helped no one. You should stay away from Alaska then if prices hurt too much for fast food. Why complain here.

    • alexG says:

      Interesting comment and information, never knew what prices were like in Alaska. I think prices in Hawaii are equally as bad for some products. Thank you for posting. Happy Holidays!!

  2. BigBelly says:

    nice review, it’s not as attractive at $2, but I might give it a try still

  3. Not Worth It says:

    Absolute B.S. to advertise heavily at .99, then you show up and it’s twice that. No way I’d make a trip there not knowing what the price is going to be. This is why I hate the dollar menu and more crap. Maybe it’s just me.

    • Robert says:

      Franchised Wendy’s can do whatever the hell they want. If you don’t like it, complain to the location, Wendy’s corporate doesn’t care.

      BTW I think the 99 cent chicken is WAY better than the 99 cent burger. The toppings work great together, though.

  4. James S says:

    I tired one of those on Saturday – I was impressed. Mine had a much larger meat patty and was hanging out of the bun. Also the local Wendy’s had it for 99¢. Also tried the chicken version which was also 99¢. I think the chicken version was the better bang for your buck. I have to believe they’re taking a significant loss at that price.

  5. Pointless Spirals says:

    Man, I live in Jersey, so I can’t really compare it to Maryland, but the restaurants/fast food joints near where I live always have the price as advertised on TV. Going there and then seeing the burger double the amount advertised must have sucked.

    In any case, I’m gonna try one when I can.

  6. DerangedHermit says:

    Wow, I’m surprised it’s $1.99 in Maryland. It’s either $.99 or $1.29 on LI (don’t quite remember)

  7. Rick says:

    I tried the chicken version, 1.99 (same for the burger) at a Wendy’s in Arlington, VA. You’re right about the cheese, I could go without it and wouldn’t notice much. The sauce was good, jalapenos were good on it as well. If this were cheaper I would get it again but for roughly the same price I could get one of the taco bell meal deals and a lot more food… Ryan is your Wendy’s owned by Davco by chance?

  8. Beefonstick says:

    All DC area wendys have higher than advertised prices in general. Its always deterred me from going w/o a coupon out of principal.
    Items look good for 99c though.

  9. thehottoddy23 says:

    I can only imagine what this thing would like at my Wendy’s, which is notorious for bad quality, screwed-up orders and just plain bad food (which is why I make about one trip a year to this particular Wendy’s). I like the spice idea and commend Wendy’s for doing something a little different, which they are often good at. Sticking with the theme of my other comments about Wendy’s, there is something about their food that just tastes wrong to me ever since the Dave’s Hot N’ Juicy burger came out a few years back. Not sure what it is but I’d much rather hit another quick-service joint than Wendy’s these days.

    • alexG says:

      I agree that something doesn’t right about their Hot N Juicy burgers. Not that overly manufactured taste of McDonalds or that fake flame broiled smokyness of BurgerKing, but something else manufactured that just tastes odd and different to me and not good at all. I prefer Carls Jr to any of the big 3 Burger places. And In N Out and 5 Guys are always the preferred choice.

  10. RossTheBoss says:

    Had one of these on Tuesday, was 99 cents in Chicago. Was a very tasty budget burger, really liked the sauce, even if the jalapenos were lacking.

    However, the three key ingredients — sauce, Pepper Jack and jalapenos — got me thinking… RETURN OF THE SPICY BACONATOR? Wonder if they would do that even if they don’t plan on bringing it back. That was one of my favorite fast food burgers of all time.

  11. The Emperor says:

    What I find super annoying are folks that purchase anything with jalapeno or habanero in the item name and then complain that it’s too hot. I personally like hot foods and you wimpy folks ruin it for the rest of us. (The McDonald’s Habanero Quarter Pounder is too hot? Really?)

    If you don’t like hot foods, stay completely away from anything that uses a descriptor like ‘HOT’ or ‘FIREY,’ or has a chili pepper in it’s name. That’s right. Nothing that says ‘Ghost Pepper’ or ‘Scorpion Pepper’ or ‘Viper Pepper’ or ‘Savina Pepper’ or ‘Habanero Pepper’ or, even, ‘Japaleno Pepper,’ just stay the heck away from it. It’s not hard.

    Jeez. Some of you folks with a wimpy palate are like simps with peanut allergies purchasing Snickers and Mr. Goodbars, then complaining that they’re too nutty. Come on…

  12. Icedus says:

    Oh geez, it’s almost 2014 and Wendy’s is still doing this with Value Menu prices? Why’d they even bother with the My 99 rebranding?

  13. MP says:

    Eating one of each right now & is 99¢ in Chicago suburbs. Very weak heat & salty peppers as pointed out. I like the burger version better & it’s nice to have a slice of cheese that completely covers the patties. I would get the burger version regularly.

  14. popwar says:

    I tried the chicken and i was not impressed at all . 5/10

  15. Paula says:

    I just had one What a waste of 1.89 in Canada , the burger was flat , the sauce overloaded. The cheese not even close to melted ! I would have added lettuce , tomato pickles and sauce and the peppers ! Not impressed! They can do better

  16. Bethany says:

    I forgot the sandwich came with jalapenos and while I was eating it actually thought they were pickles…definitely NOT spicy!

  17. current wendys manager says:

    I work at Wendy’s in Texas and the burgers and sandwiches you get from up there look terribly put together and it doesn’t look like their following correct procedures if the sandwiches your posting actually come like they are pictured. Even if they could possibly know your a food critic/ food news person I wouldn’t even serve the sandwiches the way they look in your pictures

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