FRANKLIN, TENN. – Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s aren’t newcomers to the ongoing “chicken sandwich wars” despite introducing their new Hand-Breaded Chicken Sandwich platform. The chain reimagined their popular Hand-Breaded Chicken Tenders — which launched more than a decade ago — into three new builds including the Hand-Breaded Chicken Sandwich and the Hand-Breaded Chicken & Waffle Breakfast Sandwich available at both Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr., along with the Hand-Breaded Chicken Biscuit at Hardee’s.
“Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s new Hand-Breaded Chicken sandwiches have been hard to keep a secret while we have been perfecting the formula over the last couple of years,” said Owen Klein, vice president of global culinary innovation at CKE Restaurants. “We’re hand-breading around the clock to deliver the flavor profiles that are truly craveable and will be something people will want — and can get — all day long.”
A 360-degree marketing campaign will support the launch of the new sandwiches and will include custom content on the adult entertainment platform, OnlyFans, marking Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s as the first-ever national quick-service restaurant to join the platform, according to CKE Restaurants. The channel, called Hot & Hand-Breaded, features exclusive, tongue-in-cheek content leaning into the trending autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) and Mukbang (which translates to “eating broadcast” in South Korea) culture.
The campaign also includes a partnership with VICE’s MUNCHIES, the first verified major food publisher on the platform, kicking off on May 24, to bolster content across digital channels, CKE said.
“We’re not the first to enter ‘The Chicken Wars,’ but CKE is definitely making a splash in a way no other brand in this space has before,” said Patty Trevino, senior vice president of Marketing, CKE Restaurants. “Most brands would probably blush at the thought of launching an OnlyFans channel, but we see it as a massive opportunity to reach our audience on a new, emerging platform and make our food the star. Our customers have been begging us to bring our delicious Hand-Breaded Chicken into a sandwich, and it thrills me to be able to bring this to life with three mouth-watering options.”