KFCs Beyond Fried Chicken is now available in the US

10 Jan 2022

Following two years of testing, fast-food chain KFC is bringing Beyond Fried Chicken to restaurants across the U.S. beginning on Jan. 10. This nationwide launch of fried chicken made with Beyond Meat plant protein will only be for a limited time, according to a press release from the company.

In the United States, KFC was the first national quick-service restaurant to introduce plant-based chicken onto menus when, in 2019, it tested its Beyond Fried Chicken as a limited-run in Atlanta, Georgia. Following the great success of this initial trial — the Beyond Meat chicken sold out in less than five hours —the fried chicken restaurant added additional tests in Nashville, Charlotte and Southern California. KFC CEO Kevin Hochman, told Vox that he expects this limited-time, nationwide launch to also sell out.

KFCs Beyond Fried Chicken is now available in the US

While this launch gives KFC a first-mover advantage for plant-based fried chicken on fast-food menus in the U.S., it is not a debut for plant-based meat options in quick-service restaurants.

Coffee chain Dunkin’ previously had Beyond sausage on its breakfast sandwiches at thousands of locations prior to pulling it from its menu last year. Similarly, Little Caesar’s trialed Impossible sausage on its pizza, but the trial failed, and the pizza chain discontinued its appearance on menus.

It is clear that quick-service restaurants are interested in integrating plant-based options into their menus. KFC’s parent company, Yum Brands, is also partnering with Beyond Meat and announced plant-based protein menu items at both Taco Bell and Pizza Hut in early 2021. And KFC is actively taste testing iterations of the California meat-tech startup's plant-based meat analog to develop an even more convincing alternative to traditional chicken. Forbes reported that the current recipe is the one that the company tested in 2020.

While supplies last, Beyond Fried chicken will be available for $6.99, although prices will vary by location. The plant-based fried chicken will be available as a part of its combo meals or a la carte in six or 12-piece orders.

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