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BK Chicken Tenders vs. McDonald's Chicken McNuggets: Which One Is Better?

Taste-Off! Burger King vs. McDonald's Chicken Nuggets

"Crispy. Tender. New," the Burger King website declares of its latest menu item, BK Chicken Tenders. Funny: they might've been new on the BK lineup, but we could've sworn we'd seen them somewhere. Oh, right, on the menu at every McDonald's worldwide for the last three decades as Chicken McNuggets.

Much like the BK Breakfast Muffin was to the McDonald's Sausage McMuffin, the BK Chicken Tenders are near-carbon copies of their Golden Arched counterparts. (When asked to comment, Burger King remarked, "We don't provide details on our secret recipe.")

McDonald's sells its nuggets in packages of four, six, and 10; Burger King's are available in boxes of four, eight, and 20. In our taste test, we learned that just about everything, right down to the packaging, is identical — except, we discovered, with regards to taste. To see how fast food's top two stacked up against each other in a chicken nugget faceoff, read more.

  • Chicken nuggets: Burger King's nuggets have a breaded texture, akin to that of a frozen chicken tender. McDonald's nuggets have a fluffier consistency, like that of battered, deep-fried fish, and a supple, moist interior. The winner: McDonald's.
  • Barbecue sauce: We weren't sure what to make of the McDonald's barbecue sauce. It doesn't possess any trademark smokiness, and is more like a sweet and sour sauce. We were, on the other hand, crazy for the Burger King barbecue sauce: it's complex, with layers of sweetness, smoke, and spiciness. The winner: Hands down, Burger King.
  • Ranch sauce: Burger King ranch reminded us of Hidden Valley, while McD's ranch sauce has a watery consistency and an eerily sweet taste. The winner: Burger King.

  • Honey mustard sauce: While BK's mustard is sweeter, McDonald's took the cake with a seed-flecked sauce that ends in a spicy hot kick. The winner: McDonald's.
  • Sweet and sour sauce: Another fail in the McDonald's sauce department: the dip tastes like pure corn syrup, without any sour ending whatsoever, making it our least favorite sauce. With a hint of plum, Burger King's dip is how sweet and sour sauce should taste. The winner: Burger King.
  • Buffalo sauce: Like Frank's Red Hot, McDonald's buffalo sauce is just the right heat level, with a pleasant tang. Sadly, we later found out Burger King has a buffalo sauce that we didn't try. The winner: N/A.
  • Overall sauce: Both chains offer one additional sauce (McDonald's, an overly smoky chipotle barbecue, and Burger King, something we didn't get to sample called "Zesty"). McDonald's dipping sauces are significantly larger in size than Burger King's. But in this situation, we'd take quality over quantity. The winner: Burger King.
  • Overall value. While McDonald's charges $3.74 for a six-pack, five pieces at Burger King sell for a mere $1.99, nearly half the price. The winner: Burger King.
  • The net-net: McDonald's has the better nugget, and Burger King the superior sauce.

At the end of the day, all we wanted were some Chicken McNuggets to go with our BK dipping sauces. Was that too much to ask? We know it'll never happen, but here's to hoping one day the two combine their synergies to produce the best chicken nugget combo ever.


Here's what we were working with.

The McDonald's Chicken McNuggets and their sauces.

Burger King's chicken tenders and sauces.

Sauce taste test: From left to right, honey mustard, ranch, sweet and sour, barbecue.

Some of the sauces, like the Honey Mustard, varied widely between McDonald's and Burger King.
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LilMizD95 LilMizD95 5 years
MCDONALDS NUGGETS R DA BEST!!! Id die eatn dem :)
Laxinisrelaxin Laxinisrelaxin 5 years
also wendys spicy chicken nuggets > both
Laxinisrelaxin Laxinisrelaxin 5 years
to the guy saying the most important difference was one product being tenders and the other nuggets (twice lol), i could care less what they are called. BK NUGGETS are hard, greasy, and although this is based on location, 90% of the time i get them they are cold. also this review sucks. where are you paying that much for mcnuggets..? you can get 4 for 1 dollar meaning 8 for $2's, meaning you actually get 2 more nuggets for the same price at mcdonalds. Also chipotle bbq sauce is absolutely the best of all sauces mentioned for chicken nuggets, followed by mcdonalds buffalo, then mcdonalds ranch.. and zesty is the best sauce at BK so i agree that your review is invalid.
amitakeuchi amitakeuchi 5 years
"Barbecue sauce: We weren't sure what to make of the McDonald's barbecue sauce. It doesn't possess any trademark smokiness, and is more like a sweet and sour sauce." ... "Overall sauce: Both chains offer one additional sauce (McDonald's, an overly smoky chipotle barbecue...." ... What?
fuzzles fuzzles 5 years
Like the first poster, I had a coupon for a free 4 piece nuggets or tenders, whatever you wish to call them. Either way, they blew. And pretty hard, too. I opted for the sweet and sour sauce, and didn't care for that, either. Honestly, though, I get the McNuggets maybe twice per year (always with the sweet and sour sauce), so it may be that I am a creature of habit. Nonetheless, free is good!
hexentanz hexentanz 5 years
Mcdonalds makes a 20 piece nugget. Even 100, but it is a secret menu item in most Mcdonalds so you have to ask for it specifically.
Melli2077 Melli2077 5 years
I've tried these as well. Honestly I (and my kids) like both about the same. I hold no preference to the other. I tried the new BK nuggets only because I assumed they would be a different version than the chicken fries and the "crowns" they had before. Honestly, in my opinion, they taste exactly the same as the crowns did.
gaucholoco gaucholoco 5 years
Chik. Fil. A.
leela2 leela2 5 years
McDs sweet and sour is unbeatable
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