Nearly half of consumers (45%) say they eat chicken as a snack at least once a month, up slightly from 43% in 2015. Young consumers are driving chicken snack consumption: Three-fifths of consumers between the ages of 18 and 34 (59%) say they eat chicken for a snack at least once a month, compared to half of that demographic two years ago (52%).
The most popular chicken snacks ordered at restaurants include chicken nuggets, strips and wings, according to Technomic. Chicken quesadillas and popcorn chicken are also common. Nearly all chicken snacks are more preferred among younger than older consumers.
Au Bon Pain revamped its most popular chicken lunch entree as a snack option last November. The new 200-calorie Balsamic Chicken Petit Plate features chicken, mozzarella, bruschetta, basil and a balsamic drizzle. Katherine See, vice president of culinary innovation, says Au Bon Pain’s Petit Plate sales have doubled in a year since it introduced the snacks.