Wendy’s, the fast food restaurant with the freckle faced, red-headed Wendy, has recently joined the bandwagon in releasing new, natural-cut french fries. Jack in the Box was the first to do it, with Carl’s Jr. following closely behind. Now Wendy’s is ready to introduce their new spin on the french fry and I got the opportunity to try them.
For 41 years, Wendy’s has had the same french fry recipe that might possibly have contributed to the fact that they are down to the #3 spot of popular fast food chains, according to a recent Zagat 2010 survey. McDonald’s and Burger King have had a long running competition over who has the best fries and now Wendy’s wants their turn.
You may love Wendy’s for their Frosty, or possibly for their slightly expensive burgers, but their french fries left something to be desired. They were soggy, plain and bland tasting. They didn’t use salt on them, so you had to get the separate salt packets, which you only got upon request.
The new french fries from Wendy’s are definitely a step up. Made with russet potatoes, Wendy’s uses a blend of oils with zero trans fats and flavors them with sea salt. I was pleasantly surprised with the outcome. The fries are a bit crispier than their older version, with the almost-not-there sea salt flavor.
Just because they use the title Natural-Cut doesn’t make these fries healthier, all they mean by natural is that the skin is still on them. The fries still arrive at each restaurant in a frozen state, they are not cut fresh. Although sea salt is more natural than iodized salt it isn’t necessarily better for you in regards to sodium. In fact, their new fries have more sodium than their previous successor.
The previous french fries in a size small had 330 calories, 45 carbohydrates, 15 grams of fat and 280 grams of sodium. The new natural-cut fries have slightly less calories at 320 and less carbohydrates at 41 with the same amount of fat grams. However the sodium is a whopping 380 grams, 100 more for the sea salt!
The Bottom Line
There is no doubt that the taste and quality of the new natural-cut fries from Wendy’s is better. They stay hot longer, which is a huge plus, are crispier and pack more flavor. If you like a more salty flavor in your fries, you may not like sea salt. But if you like your seasonings to be a bit more mild, you will most likely enjoy this new variety. Wendy’s hasn’t yet become my favorite fast food restaurant, but this is a step in the right direction.