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Fast food prices are going one way – up

To counter this trend, chains are adding new products to lure customers

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Photo (c) Zeljko Santrac - Getty Images
Fast food prices are rising fast. In a survey of what the major fast food companies have planned, researchers found that consumers might need to keep a few dollars more in their wallets to pay for their burgers, shakes, and tacos.

The chains aren’t necessarily greedy, mind you. They’re simply faced with the rising cost of doing business, like having to fork out more for buns because of grain import issues stemming from the Russia-Ukraine conflict, as well as higher prices for dairy and meat items.

According to a variety of sources that ConsumerAffairs consulted, here’s what consumers can expect.

Jack in the Box: A 10% increase happened in the second quarter of 2022

Shake Shack: Prices are set to rise between 5% and 7% in the mid-4th quarter of 2022.

Domino’s Pizza: Earlier this year, Domino’s raised the price of its Mix & Match delivery deal from $5.99 to $6.99. It also made a move on its $7.99 national carry-out offer, restricting it to digital orders only. 

Burger King: BK has yanked the Whopper from its value menu, and cut back on its 10-piece chicken nuggets to 8-pieces. 

Chipotle: According to Business Insider, fans of the fast-casual Mexican-centric chain can expect prices “in the mid to high-single digits” this month. Breaking that down to individual orders, that increase could mean somewhere in the ballpark of a 50 cent to $1.10 uptick per entree. 

Cheap eats and new items being added

Value menus have taken a gut punch recently. For those who haven’t been to the Golden Arches lately, and think they can fill up on a couple of items of the Dollar Menu, sorry, but the Dollar Menu is gone. As a matter of fact, the company shook up its entire Value Menu which included a price hike of its cheeseburger for the first time in 14 years. 

However, cheap eats are not gone everywhere. There’s a glimmer of hope at Taco Bell. The chain is testing $2 nachos, but only in Columbus, Ohio.

Taco Bell and other fast food chains are also testing new menu items to try to keep things interesting enough that consumers who haven’t visited in a while might decide to make a trip.

In addition to the $2 tacos, Taco Bell is testing a cheesy chipotle chicken flatbread made with chicken, chipotle sauce, tortillas strips, onion, a three-cheese blend, and if you want, jalapenos, atop a flatbread for $3.99. If it sounds good, you’ll have to go to Charlotte, N.C. because that’s the only market it’s available in for now.

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, Chick-fil-A is testing baked egg bites, Hardees and Carl’s Jr are both testing items served on King’s Hawaiian Bread, Buffalo Wild Wings has pizza topped with boneless wings, and Outback Steakhouse has Nashville hot wings.

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