Review: Wendy’s Jalapeno Fresco Spicy Chicken Sandwich (Limited Time Only)

Wendy’s. Oh, Wendy’s. You used to be so good. Then, you screwed it all up. But for whatever reason, we still get an occasional Wendy’s craving. The burgers and fries have been messed up to the point of no return. And eating a meal will require a second mortgage on your house. But one thing is still reliable; the Spicy Chicken Sandwich still rocks.

Wendy’s brought back its Jalapeno Fresco Spicy Chicken Sandwich. It has been on the menu in the past, and is back for a limited time only.

We were pretty new when this sandwich was out last year, so we didn’t review it. Now that it is back, we figured we would give it a review. Better late than never, no?

The name confuses us right off the bat. “Fresco” essentially means “fresh.” So we have a “Jalapeno fresh spicy chicken.” Maybe we are thick (HO HO!). We figure that Wendy’s is trying to say that the sandwich has fresh jalapeno. We’re scholars!

Wendy’s website describes this creation as, “Fresh-diced jalapenos, pepper jack cheese, jalapeño bun and our ghost pepper sauce…” So, this stuff takes the place of the mayo, lettuce, and tomato that is on the regular Spicy Chicken.

Another part of Wendy’s site says that the cheese is Colby pepper jack. That stands to reason, since the cheese seems to be two different colors. This description also says it has a “red jalapeno bun.” Why can’t the description be the same everywhere, people! You are making us do research here, Wendy’s!

We’re willing to give Wendy’s the benefit of the doubt here, people, because we love the regular Spicy Chicken. We actually willingly put down our beers for this one. That never happens. Off to Wendy’s we go…

IMG_20160412_140233804That’s what we saw when we opened the box.

Can’t see real good? Take another look…

IMG_20160412_140250035You can see the melted pepper jack, the fresh jalapenos, and the ghost pepper sauce dripping out all over. The spicy chicken filet is the standard one. It is a decent size, and we have always been satisfied with it.

IMG_20160412_140506113The angle above is a look after we took the sandwich out of the box. The sauce really spilled out all over.

IMG_20160412_140350273Appetizing? You decide.

IMG_20160412_140621375And there you have it. Chicken, jalapenos, and lots of sauce mixed with the slice of cheese. And you can see the red jalapeno in the bun. Well, you can see two pieces, anyway.

The spicy chicken is the same as the regular. If you have never had a Wendy’s Spicy Chicken, the filet is real chicken. It is not chopped and pressed. The chicken must be soaked in a spicy marinade. It is an orange color. The chicken is coated with a spicy breading. A big selling point for us is that the chicken is crispy. That is not the case with all chicken sandwiches (we’re looking at you, Chick-fil-A!).

Since this sandwich is covered in a gooey sauce, some of the crispiness of the chicken is lost. We don’t have a problem with it, though. You can still sense some crispiness.

The chicken was tender and juicy. Good stuff.

The bun has jalapeno, supposedly. Like we showed you, we saw two pieces on a half. It was undetectable. It tastes like a regular bun. And it was pretty ordinary, actually. Meh.

There is some onion on the sandwich. Wendy’s doesn’t have it in the description. Herman could taste it; Denny completely missed it.

The Colby pepper jack cheese is pretty much undetectable. It might as well not even be there. And why?

The thing is covered in the ghost pepper sauce. There is a ton of it. And as such, it is the dominant flavor here. The sauce has a strong, spicy flavor. The heat hits right away, but it does build as well. We each sampled a half of sandwich. By the time we were done testing, our sinuses were getting cleared. Yuck. Gross. But it happens. You get the idea.

That said, we have generally found that ghost peppers are blow your face apart, snot in your food, wreck your intestines spicy. They are high up on the chart, people. This sauce doesn’t have that effect. It’s spicy, but not that spicy. Honestly, we don’t mind. We are getting too old for this shit!

It’s all about the sauce here, people. That is the real point of this sandwich.

Overall, this sandwich isn’t bad. Our biggest complaint is that there is just too much sauce. We agree that this sandwich would be better if there was way less sauce on it. We’re talking half the sauce, people. That would be enough.

We wouldn’t get it again. Both of us would rather just get a regular Spicy Chicken Sandwich. It is a classic, and doesn’t need modification.

The sandwich is $4.99. This is pretty standard today for a premium sandwich. We will leave the value up to you.

If you like a pretty spicy sandwich dripping with sauce, go for it. We’ll stick with the regular. Back to our beer…


  1. Nico

    That thing looks awful. I’m not sure if it is the combo of what it is made of, or the way it was put together, but it looks really nasty. I’m glad you gents throw your guts in the line of fire so we don’t have too.

    It is warm outside, raise a glass of Summer Shandy, stay mildly inebriated, gents!

    Sláinte & Salute!

  2. scope

    So you like spicy chicken, how about a hot wings review? Cold beer. Hot Wings. Sounds right up the fewdies alley. I like the site. It’s entertaining.

    1. Herman C.

      I am actually a big fan of wings. Denny likes them every once in a while. And I would love to review more of them. We did do one review of the Jim Beam wings from Pizza Hut. You should check it out:

      Glad you are enjoying the site.


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