Menu Tracker: New items from Taco Bell, Arby’s

Menu Tracker: New items from Taco Bell, Arby’s

Chili’s, Dunkin’ Donuts, Krispy Kreme, Joe’s Crab Shack, California Pizza Kitchen, Pei Wei Asian Diner, Roy Rogers and Topper’s Pizza also introduce new menu items.

Taco Bell's new line of beverages
Taco Bell's new line of beverages

is expanding its partnership with PepsiCo and Mountain Dew with six new drinks.

The 6,000-unit Yum! Brands Inc. subsidiary now offers Manzanita Sol, an apple-flavored soda owned by PepsiCo that is popular in Mexico, as well as a diet version of Taco Bell’s tropical lime-flavored Mountain Dew Baja Blast. The chain also is introducing citrus-flavored Mountain Dew Sangrita Blast. Sangrita is a beverage often drunk with tequila in Mexico.

Additionally, the chain has introduced three non-carbonated drinks: a tropically-inspired Brisk Mango Fiesta; Brisk Iced Tea and Lemonade, which combines those two drinks; and zero-calorie SoBe Lifewater Yumberry Pomegranate.

 

The drinks are priced at a suggested $1.39 for 16 ounces, $1.49 for 20 ounces, $1.69 for 30 ounces and $1.79 for 40 ounces.

On its food menu, Taco Bell is adding Chipotle Ranch Chicken and Chili Cheese Fries to its line of portable Loaded Griller snacks. They join Beefy Nacho and Loaded Potato Grillers.

• Chipotle Ranch Chicken Loaded Griller: Grilled chicken, chipotle-ranch sauce and sour cream, wrapped in a tortilla and grilled

• Chili Cheese Fries Loaded Griller: Cheese fries, chili, crispy potato bites and warm nacho cheese sauce, wrapped in a tortilla and grilled.

Loaded Grillers are available all day for $1 through February, after which they will be priced at $1.49, except during Taco Bell’s Happier Hour, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., when they will be offered for $1.

Reel Big Fillet fish sandwich
Reel Big Fillet fish sandwich

has brought back its Reel Big Fillet fish sandwich, introduced in 2008 during the Lenten season.

The sandwich is battered and fried Alaska pollock with tartar sauce and shredded lettuce, served on a sesame seed bun. The recommended menu price is $2.99, but a spokesman for the 3,400-unit chain said many markets were offering two sandwiches for $5. The item will be available through the end of April.

Chili’s has introduced a line of eight Fresh Mex menu items, including two bowls, four enchiladas, a tostada and a taco.

• Chipotle Chicken Fresh Mex Bowl: Marinated grilled chicken, corn and black bean salsa, rice, and chipotle pesto layered with Cheddar cheese, pico de gallo, field greens, chopped cilantro, tortilla strips, sliced avocado and cumin-lime sour cream

• Margarita Chicken Fresh Mex Bowl: Marinated grilled chicken, salsa, rice, pico de gallo, field greens, cilantro, tortilla strips, avocado, black beans, and a citrus-based, tequila-spiked Margarita sauce.

Dunkin' Donuts' Brown Sugar Cinnamon Coffee and Latte
Dunkin' Donuts' Brown Sugar Cinnamon Coffee and Latte

The chicken used in the menu items is marinated in the Margarita sauce. Both items are available as part of a Lunch Combo served with soup or salad and priced at $7.

The other menu items are part of the 1,557-unit chain’s new Southwest Pairings, which start at $8 and are available for lunch and dinner. They include two or three of the items below, plus beans and rice.

• Green Chile Enchilada: Filled with seasoned chicken and Monterey Jack cheese, topped with green chile sauce, melted three-cheese blend, chopped cilantro and corn and black bean salsa

• Sour Cream Chicken Enchilada: Similar to the Green Chile Enchilada except with sour cream sauce instead of green chile sauce

• Beef Enchilada: Filled with taco-seasoned beef, three-cheese blend and onion, topped with ancho sauce, melted three-cheese blend, chopped cilantro, and corn and black bean salsa

• Cheese Enchilada: Filled with three-cheese blend and diced onion, topped with ancho chile sauce, melted three-cheese blend and chopped cilantro

Dunkin' Donuts' heart-shaped doughnuts for Valentine's Day
Dunkin' Donuts' heart-shaped doughnuts for Valentine's Day

• Tostada: A crispy corn tortilla dusted with Southwestern spices and topped with taco-seasoned beef or seasoned chicken with shredded lettuce, pico de gallo, three-cheese blend, black beans, chopped cilantro, avocado slices and cumin-lime sour cream

• Crispy Taco: Taco-seasoned beef or seasoned chicken, shredded lettuce, three-cheese blend, pico de gallo, chopped cilantro and sliced avocado in a crispy corn tortilla dusted with Southwestern spices.

Dunkin’ Donuts is adding a new coffee flavor and a new heart-shaped doughnut to its annual line of Valentine’s Day fare.

Through February, the 11,000-unit chain will offer a new Cookie Dough Donut, a heart-shaped doughnut with cookie-dough-flavored filling, chocolate icing and chocolate chips. The treat joins the heart-shaped Brownie Batter Donut, filled with brownie-batter-flavored filling and topped with chocolate icing and heart sprinkles, which has been brought back to the menu.

Dunkin’ Donuts is also introducing a Brown Sugar Cinnamon Coffee and Latte, available hot or iced, at participating locations through February.

The doughnuts and beverages are priced in line with other Dunkin’ Donuts items.

Krispy Kreme, Joe's Crab Shack, CPK and more

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Krispy Kreme is introducing new Hugs and Kisses doughnuts for Valentine’s Day and reprising its heart-shaped doughnuts. The items are available through Feb. 14 at a suggested retail price of $1.29 each or $8.49 per dozen at the chain’s 239 locations.

The new Hugs and Kisses doughnuts are shaped like X’s and O’s and have white icing and strawberry topping.

• Sprinkled Heart: A reprisal of the white iced, heart-shaped doughnut with red and white sprinkles

Krispy Kreme's Valentine's Day offerings
Krispy Kreme's Valentine's Day offerings

• Valentine Sprinkles doughnut: A chocolate iced ring with red and white sprinkles

• Chocolate Iced Heart: A chocolate iced heart-shaped doughnut with a red drizzle.

Joe’s Crab Shack has added calamari, buckets of crabs, mahi mahi and a Southern-inspired sampler to its spring menu, which debuted Jan. 28.

The Dippin’ Crab Bucket gives guests a choice of King, Queen, Snow, Dungeness or Antarctic crab varieties, cooked to order and served with a choice of new dipping sauces: Garlicky Butter; Tiki, flavored with garlic, plum and Sriracha sauce; and Back Bay, flavored with garlic and mushrooms. The item is priced between $22.49 and $32.99, depending on the type of crab ordered, and comes with corn, potatoes and a buttermilk biscuit.

• Shack Calamari: Batter-fried squid rings topped with Joe’s signature Shack Sauce, priced at $7.89

• Southern Sampler: Shrimp toast, crab fritters and fried pickles served with rémoulade sauce and ranch dressing, priced at $10.99

• Mahi Kabobbers: Three skewers of mahi mahi, bacon-wrapped shrimp, red peppers and red onions served with potatoes and corn hash, priced at $17.79

California Pizza Kitchen has launched a national cocktail program at its 223 restaurants, in partnership with Casamigos Tequila, a brand co-founded by actor George Clooney.

The first drink in the program is a Citrus Adobo Margarita, made with Casamigos Tequila Blanco, agave sour mix, Cointreau, chipotle adobo, orange and lime. The beverage is priced at $8.50 to $9.50, depending on the location. Other recipes are in the works, a spokeswoman said.

Pei Wei Asian Diner has added four new dishes to the permanent menu at its 192 restaurants.

• Thai Lime & Chile: Made with chicken, steak, shrimp or tofu stir-fried with Thai lime pineapple chile sauce, garlic, red onion, snap peas, Fresno chile peppers, cashews, bean sprouts, carrots, cucumbers and cilantro. The dish is served with white rice, brown rice or salad, starting at $6.39.

• Ginger Orange Edamame: Steamed soybeans with orange peel, ginger, garlic and sea salt, priced at $1.99 for a small and $2.99 for a large

• Szechuan Green Beans: Wok-seared green beans, Szechuan vegetables, Hunan sauce, chile paste and garlic, priced at $2.99

• Wok Roasted Vegetable Salad: Wok-roasted cauliflower, zucchini, carrots, green beans, scallions, assorted lettuces, Napa cabbage, cucumbers, tomatoes, toasted sesame seeds, curry salt and miso vinaigrette, priced at $7.29.

Roy Rogers has added a Gold Rush Hot Ham N Cheese sandwich to the menu at its 50 locations.

The sandwich is made with cured ham and melted American and Monterey Jack cheeses, topped with the chain’s Gold Rush sauce, which has flavors of honey, barbecue and brown sugar. The item is served on sourdough bread and priced at $4.19.

Toppers Pizza, a 53-unit chain based in Whitewater, Wis., has introduced chocolate breadsticks topped with bacon. Chocolate Baconstix joins a line that includes Tacostix, Pepperonistix, Baconstix and Cinnamonstix. The item is offered at a trial price of $3.99 until April.

The chain also has added three new dipping sauces: Chocolate Frosting, Chipotle Ranch and Marinara.

Contact Bret Thorn at [email protected] [7].
Follow him on Twitter: @foodwriterdiary [8]