Why Is KFC So Expensive? (9 Reasons Why)

If you need to feed the entire family and want to get the most for your money, KFC is definitely the place to go. However, when you compare KFC’s prices to other fast-food joints, you’ve probably noticed it’s a little more expensive to eat at KFC.

So, why is KFC so expensive? Are there specific reasons as to why the chicken costs a little more? If you’d like to find out, keep reading this article!

Why Is KFC So Expensive In [currentyear]?

KFC’s secret spice blend, use of fresh chicken, and high-calorie food options are reasons the fast-food chain is more expensive in [currentyear]. Also, KFC doesn’t have a dollar menu like other fast-food franchises and instead offers larger, family-oriented meals, leading to higher average prices. Finally, KFC fans are willing to pay more for the addictive food.

If you want more details as to why KFC is a little more expensive than other fast-food chains, keep on reading to find all the information you need below! 

1. KFC’s Herbs and Spices Blend

One reason KFC’s chicken tastes so good is the secret herbs and spices blend the restaurant uses in the chicken breading.

Also, because this 11 spice blend remains a mystery to the public, it justifies the higher prices KFC charges its customers.

In other words, because KFC is the only restaurant that uses its herbs and spices blend, it acts as a differentiating factor.

Additionally, KFC’s secret spice blend appeals to multiple taste spectrums that humans naturally crave; salty, sweet, and umami.

2. KFC Has Unconventional Menu Options

While ordering at KFC, you may have noticed that the fast-food chain doesn’t have a dollar menu like McDonald’s or Burger King. Instead, most of KFC’s menu items are more than $5, contributing to the higher prices.

However, even though KFC’s prices are a little higher, that doesn’t mean the restaurant skimps you on food. For example, KFC’s $5 Box Meal includes a full entree, drink, sides, and a dessert.

3. KFC Offers Family-Style Meal Options

Unlike other fast-food chains, KFC designs its menu options to include family-style meals. With the family-style meals, you can pick up more than enough food to feed four to six people for under $30.

So, because KFC’s menu has more family-oriented meal options, the average prices at the fast-food chain are naturally higher. Like the $5 Box Meal, KFC gives you a lot of food in the Family Fill Up options.

For example, a $20 Family Fill Up from KFC includes a bucket of chicken, four biscuits, mashed potatoes, gravy, and coleslaw. 

4. KFC Lost Sales During 2020

Another factor that led to KFC increasing its prices is the unprecedented global events that occurred during 2020.

Like other restaurants, KFC had to increase its prices to make up for all the lost sales at the height of this crisis.

For example, the most noticeable price shift was observed in the $30 Family Fill Up in some locations, which was previously priced at $20.

Also, KFC needed to increase prices to cover a new advertising campaign during this time. KFC felt the “It’s Finger-Lickin’ Good” slogan was inappropriate during a time when the world was concerned about the spread of germs. 

5. KFC Only Uses Fresh Chicken

5. KFC Only Uses Fresh Chicken

Because KFC uses fresh and never frozen chicken, the restaurant charges higher prices.

However, customers are content with paying a little more for fresh chicken because most other fast-food chains use frozen chicken.

According to KFC employees, the chicken is delivered to locations within two days from various local poultry companies. 

6. KFC Pressure Cooks Its Chicken

The aspect KFC is best known for is its chicken, so it should come as no surprise that KFC has essentially mastered the chicken preparation process.

For example, KFC chicken goes through a multi-step preparation process before it’s finally pressure-cooked.

By using a pressure cooker, KFC chicken maintains the juiciness and adds a crunchy texture that people crave.

7. KFC’s Food Is High in Calories

Another reason KFC’s food is a little more expensive than other fast-food chains is the number of calories the menu items contain.

Most of the time, high-calorie foods are more expensive, and that’s certainly the case at KFC.

For example, KFC’s food contains a lot more calories than other restaurants, so you’re getting what you pay for in terms of calorie to food ratio.

8. KFC’s Crispy Chicken Is Addicting

Because KFC’s chicken is specially formulated to be addictive, the restaurant can charge higher prices because it knows people will continue coming back.

With that, KFC’s food contains a lot of sodium, which is naturally addicting to humans.

Also, the crispy texture of KFC’s chicken is another element that makes the food addicting. Essentially, KFC understands people will pay a little more because the food is simply too good to pass up.

9. Customers Are Willing to Pay for KFC’s Prices 

Even though KFC continues to raise its prices, the fast-food chain offers food that fans can’t skip.

Overall, KFC has separated itself from other fast-food chains by offering unique menu items and better-tasting chicken.

Therefore, customers will fork over a little extra money to pay for better-tasting food. 

If you want to know more, you can also see our posts on why is KFC so good, why is KFC so popular in Japan, and what is KFC.


Several factors have caused KFC to raise its prices over the years. Some factors, like the global events of 2020, were out of the fast-food chain’s control.

However, other elements, like the secret spice blend and the use of fresh chicken, are luxuries fans will pay more for at KFC.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of QuerySprout.com.

1 thought on “Why Is KFC So Expensive? (9 Reasons Why)”

  1. I really miss eating KFC. It was the go to for my husband and I when we wanted to eat noddy 🙂
    We would get a bucket of chicken and two drinks and eat outdoors.
    Since the price hike, we have only been there once, and even though we talk about going, we quickly change our minds, when we remember that it is $30 for lunch and end up back at Taco Bell. I like Taco Bell, but I really miss KFC. I hope that there is an adjustment ahead in terms of the prices so that we can go back to enjoying our KFC picnics in the spring summer and fall.

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