Fast Food Review: Western Bacon Thickburger from Hardee’s
Rarely can I pass up a western-style burger. The Rodeo Cheeseburger from Burger King is a personal favorite of mine. So when Hardee’s added to their line of Thickburgers with a western version, I had to make the stop. Introducing the Western Bacon Thickburger from Hardee’s.
Padma Lakshmi and I might be soul mates. She was all over the Western Bacon Burger in that Hardee’s/Carl’s Jr. commercial. You won’t be seeing me in a sexy dress having BBQ sauce spilling all over the place, but there’s just something about onion rings and BBQ sauce on a burger that makes it extra special. So I can definitely relate to Padma’s “love affair” with food. On a recent road trip, I drove passed at least 8 signs pointing towards a Hardee’s restaurant. Only on my return trip did I decide to stop by and sample the Western Bacon Thickburger. This burger is billed as, “A 1/3 lb. 100% black angus beef Thickburger topped with beer-battered onion rings, spicy sweet BBQ sauce, melted cheese, diced onion and strips of bacon.”
The Thickburger beef patty is definitely hearty clocking in at a 1/3 pound. I was happy it wasn’t overly greasy and had a “real burger” taste. A lot of fast food burgers to me seem to get their flavor from being overly greasy. This burger was able to maintain a nice burger flavor without dripping with grease. The BBQ sauce, on the other hand, was definitely dripping from this beast. It made the burger extra sloppy and the fact that the BBQ sauce wasn’t that great made it even worse. The BBQ sauce is supposed to be “spicy sweet” and that’s just the way I like it. What I got, in fact, was just a BBQ sauce taste which was neither spicy or sweet. The strips of bacon on this burger overlaps everything and sticks out from the rest. It was decent but didn’t really add or take away from the meal. The cheese was melted well over the burger but really did nothing to add to the taste and just added to the calories and fat (warning this thing is 900 calories with 53 grams of fat!). On the bottom of the burger there are a couple of pretty thick beer-battered onion rings. The onion rings had a nice crunch to them but I couldn’t find their specific taste. Where the onion ring lacks in flavor, the diced onion provides the backup. Too bad the diced onion flavor overwhelmed the entire burger and I found myself scraping off some of them. I think the diced onion really worked against the other flavors of the burger. The sesame seed bun struggled to keep all the ingredients intact. The Western Bacon Thickburger carried a price tag of $4.19 for the burger alone and $6 and change for the combo. I must say, it’s a really nice sized burger but not worth $4.19. I actually got sick of it three quarters of the way through and didn’t finish the entire thing.
If I were to ever get this burger again, I would hold off on the diced onions and get a better idea of the flavors from the other ingredients. I just hate when a meal is almost completely dominated by one of the ingredients, and that ingredient turns out to be your least favorite. So I’m going to say that with a little customization, this burger holds some potential. I won’t go as far as saying it was poor, but it’s really close. As is, it wasn’t very impressive and had me longing for a Rodeo Cheeseburger from the BK value menu.
Pros: Nice crunch to the onion rings. Hearty and big. Has potential if you hold the diced onions. Burger not overly greasy.
Cons: BBQ sauce wasn't very spicy or sweet. Too much onion taste. Not cheap. Sloppy. 900 calories and 53 grams of fat!
Grubbing on-the-go: 4.25/10
Overall GrubGrade: 5.00/10
More Info: Hardees.com
Calories - 900
Total Fat - 53 grams
Saturated Fat - 20 grams
Cholesterol - 100 milligrams
Sodium - 2040 milligrams
Carbs - 72 grams
Sugars - 19 grams
Dietary Fiber - 3 grams
Protein - 34 grams