Fast-food chain has brought its expertise to the supreme home cooking challenge.
While the sake of tradition will keep many batting away oven smoke in the kitchen well into the night, an easier alternative can form its own kind of Thanksgiving memories.
Some have “Friendsgiving” potlucks, a few in warmer climates bring some sandwiches to a beach picnic and still others have memories of indulging in fast food while watching the parade.
While Chinese food and pizza have for years been the choice of Thanksgiving rebels, some chains do offer a fast-food version of the turkey centerpiece.
Back in 2001, Restaurant Brands International (QSR) – Get Restaurant Brands International Inc. Report-owned Popeyes introduced the Cajun-Style Turkey — a full bird in the chain’s signature Louisiana-style blend that once sold for $39.99 but is now significantly more due to rampant food inflation.
The Cajun Fix Has a Long History
Popeyes has, over the last 20 years, marketed its turkey as a “Cajun Fix.” The turkey comes pre-cooked so all the host has to do is thaw, heat and serve it.
“Popeyes’ Cajun-Style Turkey is marinated with our signature blend of Louisiana seasoning, slow roasted and then flash fried for a crispy coating.” reads the separate website created for placing orders. “The Turkey is delivered to your door pre-cooked so all you have to do is thaw, heat, serve & enjoy.”
The turkey is available to pre-order from October 18 in the continental United States (no turkey for Hawaii and Alaska, unfortunately) for $94.99.
Last year, the same turkey cost between $39.99 and $54.99. The higher number takes in account both inflation (food prices have risen by as much as 10% this year) and the shipping that was formerly not included — the latter can run high when it concerns shipping frozen food across the country. Side dishes are not included.
For those who want to get their Thanksgiving turkeys in a row, deliveries can be arranged as early as October 24. There’s even a “shipping and returns” section in case the turkey does not arrive in “pristine condition” (but not if you just want to see it and give it back).
The one caveat is that the Cajun-Style Turkey still takes somewhere between 48 to 72 hours to thaw so it’s not as simple as placing an Uber Eats (UBER) – Get Uber Technologies Inc. Report order — even though it’s fast food, having it on your table will still require some planning.
Every year, the return of Cajun-Style Turkey ads causes a stir online from fans who are either long-time fans or shocked by its existence.
Thanksgiving And Fast Food: A Long Tradition
Given its cultural association as a food holiday, Thanksgiving is also a prime marketing opportunity for fast-food chains of all kinds.
At a time when the rest of the country goes home for the holiday, many fast food places stay open and have traditionally marketed themselves as either a “last resort” or a way to bring together lonely people who have not been invited to an elaborate fireside dinner.
In recent years, some chains have also leaned into the idea of a non-traditional Thanksgiving. Last year, Yum! Brands (YUM) – Get Yum! Brands Inc. Report-owned Taco Bell sent some fans Friendsgiving Party Packs with Cinnabon Delights Candied Yams, Green Bean Casserole Supreme and dessert nachos.
McDonald’s (MCD) – Get McDonald’s Corporation Report also ran a Friendsgaming promotion in which those spending the holiday staring at a screen could at least order a few Crispy Chicken Sandwiches for sharing.