Pub chain Wetherspoon is taking on Nando's with new chicken range

Time for a cheeky ‘SPOONS! Pub chain Wetherspoon is taking on Nando’s with new range of £7.99 spicy chargrilled chicken meals available from TODAY

  • The Watford-based pub chain is taking on Nando’s with its new chicken range
  • British farm assured chicken is marinated, slow cooked and finished on chargrill
  • Half-chicken comes either a lemon and herb or spicy Naga chilli and citrus glaze
  • Both meals come with chips, spicy rice or salad and priced from £7.99 with drink 

Wetherspoon pubs are launching an assault on Nando’s by serving a new range of chargrilled chicken meals from today starting at just £7.99 with a drink.

The Watford-based pub chain said the British farm assured chicken is served on the bone having been marinated, slow cooked and finished on the chargrill.

The half-chicken comes with coleslaw and either a lemon and herb glaze and a garlic and herb dip; or with a spicy Naga chilli and citrus glaze and Sriracha hot sauce.

Both meals are served with a choice of chips, spicy rice or salad – and customers can also add a portion of five chicken wings as well as spicy seasoning to their chips.

The majority of the company’s pubs – 644 in total – will be serving the main meals at the price of £7.99 including a soft drink or £9.29 with a alcoholic drink.

Prices are slightly higher in the remainder of pubs – around 170 – and there are 14 pubs where prices will be lower. The five chicken wings cost £2.50 in all pubs. 

The headline price is nearly half the equivalent at Nando’s which offers a similar meal for £12.45 plus £1.65 for a soft drink – or beer from £3.95 and wine from £3.15.

The Wetherspoon half-chicken comes with coleslaw and either a lemon and herb glaze and a garlic and herb dip; or with a spicy Naga chilli and citrus glaze and Sriracha hot sauce

How do Wetherspoon’s chicken prices compare to Nando’s? 

Wetherspoon – £7.99, meal with drink

  • £7.99
  • Half-chicken
  • One choice of flavouring out of: a lemon and herb glaze and a garlic and herb dip; or a spicy Naga chilli and citrus glaze and Sriracha hot sauce
  • One side of coleslaw
  • One side from: chips; spicy rice; or salad
  • One non-alcoholic drink (eg glass of Pepsi)

Nando’s – £14.10, meal with drink

  • £12.45
  • Half chicken
  • One choice of flavouring out of: extra hot; hot; medium, spiced clementine; lemon and herb; ‘plain…ish’; and ‘Peri-Tamer’
  • Two sides from a choice of: Peri-salted chips, garlic bread; chips, spicy rice; corn on the cob; rainbox slaw; spiced grains and butternut squash; creamy mash; coleslaw; macho peas; long-stem broccoli; and mixed leaf salad
  • £1.65 extra for non-alcoholic drink (eg Coca-Cola 330ml bottle)

Matt Elsdon, Wetherspoon’s senior food development manager, said this morning: ‘We strive to offer our customers the widest choice of meals. We believe the chargrilled chicken dishes will be a great addition to the food offering in our pubs.’ 

Last week it emerged that younger customers drinking cocktails had helped boost Wetherspoon, but the pub giant had seen some of its older clientele stay away.

The group, led by Tim Martin, saw shares dip after it revealed like-for-like sales over a 15-week period were 8.9 per cent down on levels from the same period in 2019.

Wetherspoon said this included a 9.6 per cent decline in bar sales, although it highlighted a surge in sales of drinks typically bought by its younger customers.

Nando’s has a range of grilled chicken options which Wetherspoon will now be competing with

Over the 15-week period to November 7, the hospitality firm saw cocktail sales rise 45 per cent, vodka sales increase 17 per cent and rum sales rise 26 per cent. 

Meanwhile, it revealed draught products, which are traditionally bought by its older customers, saw significant declines amid caution due to the pandemic. 

Wetherspoons added its food volumes ‘appear to have been affected by some customers working from home’, with sales of breakfasts dropping by 22 per cent.

Last month Wetherspoon recorded its biggest loss on record after suffering heavily from Covid-19 restrictions – losing more than £150million last year.

Wetherspoon pubs are taking on Nando’s by serving a new range of chargrilled chicken meals

The company has only seen losses in three of its 37 years – in 1984, 2020 and 2021 – but the 12 months to July 25 were its worst to date.

The chain sunk to a pre-tax loss of £154.7million, up from £34.1million a year ago, while sales were down from £1.26billion to £772.6million.

Nando’s was founded in Johannesburg in 1987, and there are now more than 450 outlets in the British Isles. The first UK one opened in Ealing, West London, in 1992.

In August the chain had to temporarily close around 70 outlets in Britain after staff shortages hit its chicken supply chain in a blow to the country’s hospitality sector. 

How to make your own Nando’s! FEMAIL reveals how to make your own PERi-PERi dishes at home (and the secret is to bake AND grill it)

By Bridie Pearson-Jones For MailOnline

Nando’s released a step-by-step guide last year to their famous PERi-PERi chicken thighs, spicy rice and macho peas during an Instagram live when their restaurants were forced to shut in lockdown.

Hosted by Nando’s head of food Tim Molema, live from his kitchen, with singer Jgrrey following his instructions, the live stream promised a fun hour of cooking the marinated thighs and rice,.

In order to cook their famous PERi-PERi- chicken thighs, spicy rice and macho peas, Mr Molema advised to have the boneless chicken thighs marinated overnight in the Nando’s sauce of your choosing to give it their unmistakable taste. 

He advised to get chicken the Nando’s way, the secret was to bake it in the oven then finish it off in a hot grill pan. 

Fancy trying it yourself? Here, FEMAIL reveals how to make Nando’s chicken at home if your local branch is closed. 

NANDO’S BONELESS CHICKEN THIGHS  RECIPE

INGREDIENTS 

  • 125g bottle of PERi-PERi Sauce (choose your flavour) 
  • 12 boneless chicken thighs, skin on
  • To serve Your favourite Nando’s PERi-PERi sauce   

Last year, Nando’s released a step-by-step guide to their famous PERi-PERi chicken thighs, spicy rice and macho peas during an Instagram live when their restaurants were forced to shut in lockdown. Pictured are their PERi-PERi thighs  

 METHOD

NANDO’S MACHO PEA RECIPE 

 INGREDIENTS 

  • 400g frozen peas
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 3-4 springs fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2-3 sprigs fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 good pinches of dried red chilli flakes (add more if you like it hot)

Nando’s mix their peas with fresh parsley sprigs and fresh mint, as well as olive oil and butter to give it their famous creamy consistency  (pictured: Nando’s macho peas)

 RECIPE

 

NANDO’S SPICY RICE RECIPE 

INGREDIENTS  

  • 200g Basmatri rice
  • 450ml Cold Water
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1/2 white onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1/2 green pepper, finely diced
  • 1 small green chilli, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp ground tumeric
  • 1/2 cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp salt 

Tim also revealed how to make Nando’s spicy rice (pictured), which involves a green chilli, ground tumeric, cayenne pepper and  smoked paprika

 RECIPE

 

And if you can’t get your hands on Nando’s premade sauce… try SORTEDFOOD’s Piri-Piri chicken 

SORTEDfood – YouTube is an online food community with more than three million followers, dedicated to making delicious food accessible to everyone.  

Here, they share their recipe for Piri-Piri chicken with FEMAIL… 

SORTEDfood – YouTube is an online food community with more than three million followers, dedicated to making delicious food accessible to everyone. Here, they share their recipe for Piri-Piri chicken with FEMAIL…

Ingredients

  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 160 ml olive oil
  • 60 ml red wine vinegar
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 fresh chillies (to taste)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 small chicken
  • 1 handful mixed salad leaves
  • 1 portion chunky chips

 METHOD

MAKE THE MARINADE

CUT THE CHICKEN

2. Cut either side of the backbone with a pair of sharp shears and then remove the diamond-shaped breast bone from inside the cavity. 

RUB OVER THE MARINADE

3. Open the chicken up like a book and rub the marinade all over, inside and out. Leave in the fridge overnight if you can. 

PREHEAT THE OVEN

4.Preheat oven to 180°C. 

ROAST THE CHICKEN

5. Lay the spatchcock chicken on a baking tray and roast for about an hour until cooked right through and there are no signs of blood at the thickest parts of the bird. Check by cutting into a leg joint.  

SERVE WITH CHIPS!

6. Serve with plenty of fresh salad and some chunky chips. Serves 2-4

 

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