If you’re a fan of fried chicken and mac and cheese, the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl is for you. Read on to learn more about this menu item and when and where you can get it as well as some alternatives for when KFC doesn’t have the bowl.
Overview of the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl
The KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl is a limited-time menu item that first came out in 2019. It combines the famous mac and cheese from KFC with popcorn chicken, and it’s very similar to the Famous Bowls the restaurant serves.
Unfortunately, as of this writing, the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl isn’t available. When you go to the menu, the page titled “Mac and Cheese Bowl” is just for their standard mac and cheese. That dish uses elbow macaroni and cheddar cheese sauce, so you get the standard taste you expect from mac and cheese.
Whether you want the regular Mac and Cheese or the bowl with chicken, you’ll want to head to your local KFC to check the pricing and availability. And if you want the bowl, you should follow KFC on social media to learn when they’ll bring it back next.
Why Get the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl
When it’s available, the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl is an excellent main meal item. You can combine chicken and cheesy pasta into one. It’s an easier way to eat the food than if you got pieces of chicken and a side of mac, especially if you have to eat in your car, like on a road trip.
The regular mac and cheese that’s always available is also worth trying. For one, you can order an individual or large size. So if you’re a vegetarian, you can have something to eat when all of your friends want to go to KFC.
It’s also an excellent side to any of the KFC meals if you’re not a vegetarian. Plus, you can order it with popcorn chicken to easily recreate the Mac and Cheese Bowl.
How to Recreate the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl
If you’re craving the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl, you may be able to order it. But since it’s not a standard menu item, your best option might be to recreate the bowl.
Luckily, doing so is easy enough when you go to KFC. Or maybe you no longer live near a KFC, in which case you can buy the ingredients and make a bowl from scratch.
Here’s how you can put both plans into action.
If you live near a KFC, you’ll want to head to your nearest location. Then, you can order an entree of popcorn chicken with a side of mac and cheese. If you’re quite hungry, you can get the larger size of the pasta.
Once you receive both items, you can mix them together yourself. You can do this in the restaurant, but you’ll have to be careful not to spill anything.
If possible, take your food home so that you can use your own bowls. Then, you can make sure the bowl is big enough to hold all of the chicken and pasta. You can also add any shredded cheese you have at home.
Make the Bowl at Home
Another option is to recreate the KFC chicken and mac and cheese. You can find a variety of popcorn chicken recipes online. And of course, most mac and cheese comes in a box with directions on how to make that.
As you’re boiling the pasta, prepare your chicken and cook it following a recipe. Try to time the items so that they’re ready and hot at the same time. You can ask a friend or relative for help so that each of you can focus on one thing.
Once both items are done, combine them like you would combine the KFC foods. Then, you can taste the bowl to see how you like it. For better or worse, this bowl probably won’t taste exactly like KFC’s, but it can still be a tasty treat if you don’t live near a KFC restaurant.
Other Fast Food Mac and Cheeses
If you don’t have any KFC locations near you, you can still satisfy your craving for fast food mac and cheese. Sure, you can recreate the Mac and Cheese Bowl at home. But if you don’t want to cook, you have options.
Plenty of other fast food restaurants sell mac and cheese. These recipes aren’t quite the same as KFC, but you may find you like one or more of them better.
Noodles & Company
First, you may want to try mac and cheese from Noodles & Company. You can get just the pasta and cheese sauce, which is great if you’re a vegetarian or are otherwise craving only a side of the mac.
If you’re craving some chicken on your pasta, you can order the BBQ Chicken Mac, and you can ask to remove the BBQ sauce and jalapeños. Alternatively, you can order the standard mac and cheese but add grilled chicken breast or parmesan-crusted chicken breast.
You could even order the regular mac and cheese and head home. Make some popcorn chicken to add to the dish. That way, it will be more reminiscent of the KFC version.
Panera is another fast food standard that has some great mac and cheeses. You can order a standard Mac & Cheese as an entree and get it with a side, like bread. Or you could order it as a You Pick Two with The Signature Take Chicken Sandwich.
Ask for only the chicken and no toppings on the sandwich. Then, you can cut up the chicken breast and add it to your mac and cheese to get some protein. If you want a bit of spice, you can order the spicy version of the sandwich.
Once again, you can also take your Panera home and make some popcorn chicken. That’s a great idea if you like Panera mac but want the taste of popcorn chicken rather than chicken breast.
Popeye’s is probably the closest competitor of all fast food mac and cheeses since it’s also a chicken restaurant. That makes it the easiest place to recreate the KFC Mac and Cheese Bowl if you can’t get to your local KFC.
You’ll want to order an 8-pc nuggets combo and upgrade your side to mac and cheese. Of course, you can add the nuggets to your mac and cheese. The nice thing about this option is it will come with a drink and a biscuit.
If you don’t need those, you can order just the nuggets and a side of mac and cheese. Combine the two to make your meal. While nuggets aren’t the same as popcorn chicken, they’re pretty close.
Chick-fil-A is another place to check out if you want to recreate KFC’s Mac and Cheese Bowl. Like at Popeye’s you can order a nugget combo and choose mac and cheese as your side. That way, you’ll get the two main things you need.
If you’re trying to eat a bit healthier, you can also order grilled nuggets. They’ll add a different taste and texture to your own mac and cheese bowl. Of course, you’ll need to go between Monday and Saturday since Chick-fil-A doesn’t operate on Sundays.