Wendy’s Launches Saucy Nuggs

The QSR follows KFC and spicy summer flavor trends with seven sauce options.

June 11, 2024

Wendy’s launched Saucy Nuggs in seven flavors on June 10, bringing customers the QSR’s original chicken nuggets tossed and coated in sauce.

"This new innovation is all about providing a next-level culinary experience rooted in flavor," said John Li, global vice president of culinary innovation at The Wendy's Company. "We crafted four unique sauces to complement the Wendy's nugget experience and to provide fans with a variety of chicken options that meet their lifestyles and palettes. Whether fans want a bite-size snack or a full meal, we've got them covered with our new Saucy Nuggs."

Wendy’s offers the nuggets in seven flavors:

  • Honey BBQ: Wendy’s describes this flavor as “full of smokiness and sweetness, delivering exactly what you would expect from a delicious barbecue sauce.” With a subtle hint of honey, it's an approachable sweet and tangy flavor.
  • Garlic Parm: A classic flavor that packs a punch of layered, savory goodness from the very first bite, this sauce “strike[s] the perfect balance of garlic and parmesan without overwhelming your tastebuds,” Wendy’s wrote.
  • Buffalo: A beloved staple that always has your back! This sauce has buttery undertones with a subtle touch of vinegar.
  • Spicy Honey BBQ: The perfect balance of sweet and spicy, made for fans looking to level up their Honey BBQ journey.
  • Spicy Garlic Parm: A fiery twist on a classic—Wendy’s said this sauce has the sweetness and sharpness of four types of roasted garlic packed into this garlic parm sauce.
  • Spicy Buffalo: Wendy's Spicy Buffalo delivers an intense kick balanced by a subtle tang of vinegar.
  • Spicy Ghost Pepper: An intensely spicy experience with a lingering depth, this sauce is “perfect for the adventurous person who wants to dial it up on the spice-o-meter.”

The nuggets are served with a side of ranch or Blue Cheese dipping sauce and available in four, six, 10 or 20-piece counts.

KFC also launched saucy nuggets earlier this year in five flavors: Honey Sriracha, Korean BBQ, Sticky Chicky Sweet n’ Sour Sauce, Nashville Hot and Georgia Gold.

This week, KFC said it had changed its summer sauce lineup to three options, keeping Korean BBQ, Honey Sriracha and adding a new BBQ sauce flavor to its lineup: Honey BBQ. “A sweet, smoky and tangy sauce with brown sugar and honey rounding out the tanginess of tomato and secret spices. This fan-favorite classic BBQ sauce is made for the traditionalists.”

KFC said “more saucy news is to come later this summer.” The company is also extending its $10 Tuesdays deal for a bucket of eight pieces of drums and thighs and offering free delivery every Sunday this summer on KFC.com and the KFC app.

Both fast food chain’s sauces that bring the heat answer to consumers’ demand for fiery foods this summer, with some foodservice trendspotters calling spicy and “swicy,” or a combination of sweet and spicy, the current hottest flavor trend.

“The spicy trend is here to stay,” Sally Lyons Wyatt, packaged goods and foodservice industry advisor with market research firm Circana, said in an interview with CNN.