Sunday, June 24, 2012

Chicken Tenders SMACKDOWN!

This weekend we had the fun of having one of my son's friends over for a sleepover.  After a great day on the beach, then home to tend to a little sunburn - we had to make dinner for 2 hungry boys and a growing teen daughter. What to make?  Personally, I was craving chicken tenders - so I decided to satisfy my taste buds and hit the local Food Lion to pick some up.The kids were excited to be part of a food SMACKDOWN so that convinced them to want chicken tenders!

The 2 brands vying for my attention were Perdue and Tyson.  There were  other brands available as well, but they weren't "real" chicken tenders, they were more pressed/processed chicken parts -- I wanted the real deal.
Tyson, with their bright red packaging and a lovely photo of the tasty chicken tenders - $7.49 for a 25 oz. bag.  Perdue and their trademark blue packaging - newly adding green to the mix for the whole grain aspect of their food product.  Perdue is $7.99 for a 25 oz. package.  The two brands are so similar in their preparation and nutritional analysis we are truly comparing apples to apples. Both are real chicken coated with whole grain wheat flour according to the packaging. 

For this SMACKDOWN we were judging purely on taste - the moistness of the chicken, the flavor of the breading, the crunch factor.

I used a serving platter and labeled one side A and placed the Tyson brand on side A.  Side B of the serving platter held the Perdue brand. 

Side by side, the Tyson breading looked puffier and crunchier, while the Perdue was kind of flat on the surface - making the visual winner Tyson.  We do eat with our eyes - and all 3 children commented that the "tenders on side A of the plate looked crunchier than those on side B of the plate."  

Next judging was size.  Both Tyson and Perdue tenders were proportionately similar.  A tie!

Then initial crunch was judged:  The tenders on side A looked crunchier - and they were crunchier.  I even got "shushed" to listen to the crunch of the side A tenders versus the side B tenders.  Tyson wins.

Finally, taste was judged.  All 3 kids agreed that the tenders on side A tasted better.  They all liked the flavor of the crunchy breading and the moist and tender chicken inside.  They also agreed that the tenders on side B of the plate had a kind of "spicy" taste - which I think they are referring to a paprika or peppery taste.  The chicken was also dry.  Tyson wins on taste.

I agree with the test panel on all accounts - the Tyson Crispy Chicken Strips wins the first SMACKDOWN.

Do you have a favorite brand of something that you would like me to do a SMACKDOWN?  Let me know and I will feature your favorite product on a future SMACKDOWN!!!!