From KFC’s Double Down sandwich, and Taco Bell’s Doritos Locos Tacos to Burger King’s Whopperito, and Pizza Hut’s grilled cheese- and hot dog-stuffed pizza crusts, we’ve heard of it all. These crazy combinations keep drawing curious diners who want to say they’ve tried it all.
Welcome to the strange world of stunt foods, a trend within the fast-food industry that embraces splashy ingredient combinations to invent ‘foods’ that are simultaneously fascinating and horrifying. Regardless of how you feel about them, it appears these weird and wacky concoctions are here to stay.
However, these ‘stunt foods’ are not the actual money-makers and are usually only available for short periods of time. It can be termed a marketting strategy used by many fast-food chains to draw customers into the restaurant to try these outrageous combinations. Usually, people enter the restaurant to try these combinations and end up buying other regular items fom the menu. This has helped to offset the recent fast-food recession and reclaim some market share from rapidly growing fast-casual restaurants.
What makes the perfect ‘stunt’ food?
According to experts in the industry, culinary logic, knowledge of the familiar, and the ability to think out of the box are crucial factors. “ And it’s hard to get the intersection of those three things. But when you do, it can mean big business, as Taco Bell discovered with its Doritos Locos Tacos”, they say.
Why are people crazy about these culinary concoctions?
The thrill of trying something new, something that’s perceived as daring and can be showcased on social media as evidence of being adventourous definitely pushes people in to trying these stunt foods. Further, the innate curiosity that humans have to try what these foods taste like could be a huge driving factor.
For now, the more people talk about stunt foods, the more incentive there is for companies to produce them; but it will be interesting to see over the long run, whether the growing awareness about nutrition, the environmental impact of meat, and health issues will help customers to call out these foods for what they are — simple marketting gimmicks.
Check out Aditi Sriprasad’s post on https://www.hungryforever.com/stunt-food-world-regular-food-doesnt-make-cut/