KFC is one of the biggest fast food chains in the world for a reason. While they might be most well-known for their delicious fried chicken, sometimes you want something with a bit more of a kick – that’s where their range of delicious sauces comes in!
If you’re looking to add more flavor to KFC’s iconic blend of 7 herbs and spices, then your best bet is to choose from one of their sauces. But which sauce is the best? With so many different sauces to pick from, it can be hard to know which one is the best choice.
That’s why we’ve done all the hard work for you!
In this handy guide, we’ll take a look at all of the sauces that KFC has to offer and rank them from worst to best. We’ve also reviewed each sauce, covering their flavor and what they add to your meal, so you know which sauce really reigns supreme.
So let’s get started, shall we?
Ranking All 7 Sauces From KFC
While KFC (see also ‘16 of KFC’s Best and Most Delicious Menu Items‘) is most famous for its chicken, no KFC meal would be complete without its delicious sauces. KFC offers 7 different dipping sauces, each with their own merits along with some downsides.
Here, we’ll be taking a look at each sauce and ranking them from lowest to highest, starting from the bottom and working our way up.
So without further ado, here’s our ranking of every sauce KFC has to offer!
Starting off our list is KFC’s most basic dip – their simple honey sauce. Honey might not be the first sauce that you’d think of as a great pairing for chicken, but there’s plenty to love here!
If you’re ordering biscuits, you can’t go without a drizzle of delicious honey! That’s not the only thing it’s good for, however; adding some of the sweet and subtle honey sauce to chicken gives it a hint of sweetness that balances out the savory chicken, or helps mellow out the heat of spicy tenders.
However, there are a few things that drag KFC’s honey sauce down to the bottom of our ranking. First of all, despite its name, this sauce isn’t made with honey (at least, not as the main ingredient).
Instead, this sauce mostly uses corn syrup for its sweetness. This leaves it without the gentle, almost earthy flavor of honey, and means that it’s more of a sugary syrup without a distinct flavor.
Don’t get us wrong, though; it might be at the bottom of our list, but this sauce is still a great option that goes perfectly with everything from chicken to biscuits! Its simple sweetness and gentle flavor give whatever you add it to a delicious syrupy touch.
Ketchup is a bit of a divisive choice for most people, so it makes sense that it would fall towards the lower end of our list. While its flavors are slightly more complex than honey sauce – with a blend of sweet tomato, tangy vinegar, and various spices – there’s still not a massive amount going on here.
That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however, and the simplicity of ketchup makes it great for accentuating the taste of your KFC meal while still letting the delicious flavors of their chicken shine through.
Great for slathering on a sandwich or dipping your fries into, ketchup adds a sweet and tangy twist to KFC that works super well with their signature herb and spice blend. Its biggest downside is that it’s just a bit boring – combine this with its polarizing flavor, and it’s safe to say that there are plenty of more popular options you can choose at KFC.
If you’re looking for gluten-free options at KFC, you’ll be pleased to know that their grilled chicken pieces and many of their sides, like green beans and corn on the cob, are generally gluten-free.
However, it’s always a good idea to check with the specific KFC location as preparation methods can vary.
5. Honey Mustard
Another honey-based sauce, honey mustard balances out the sweetness of the honey with a hit of mustardy heat. This more complex flavor profile perfectly complements anything from wings to fries, and helps elevate your KFC to the next level.
This double whammy of sweet and spicy helps to bring out the smokier flavors of the chicken and adds some zing that you can’t do without.
Along with making your chicken taste even better, it can also be a great addition to biscuits, fries, and even slaw! The gentle heat and punch of sweetness in this sauce make it a unique pick, but one that’s well worth making!
You might find that honey mustard may be a bit overpowering, and it can drown out some of the more subtle flavors like the herbs and spices in the chicken. It also doesn’t have as much of a kick as it could have, with less heat than you’d get with mustard alone.
With that said, though, it’s hard to deny adding honey mustard to KFC’s crispy tenders or popcorn chicken is a delicious decision!
4. Classic Ranch
Ranch is another one of those sauces that people seem to either love or hate. Despite this, though, the combination of buttermilk, herbs, and spices makes this sauce a classic for a reason!
It’s rich, creamy, and has plenty of flavors thanks to its onion, garlic, and herb blend giving it a tasty twist. Buttermilk is also a popular pairing for chicken, so it makes sense that this tasty ranch sauce is the perfect accompaniment to KFC!
What makes this sauce so great isn’t so much that it adds a ton of flavor, but rather that it compliments the flavors that are already there.
Whether you’re using ranch to cool down some spicy tenders or add some rich creaminess to popcorn chicken, this sauce is perfect for practically any dish you could want.
3. Hot Sauce
No fried chicken would be complete without some heat, and KFC is no exception. That’s why a drizzle of KFC’s delicious hot sauce is the perfect way to bring some spice to your chicken!
It doesn’t matter whether you’re dousing some plain chicken in the stuff, or topping off some spicy chicken with even more heat, hot sauce is the way to go.
KFC’s hot sauce is beautiful in its simplicity, using just a few ingredients – these include cayenne pepper, brown sugar, vinegar, and a selection of other delicious spices. It boasts a fiery kick with a hint of sweetness to mellow it out, while the vinegar adds a tangy bite without becoming overpowering.
Adding hot sauce to your chicken is a no-brainer, but you can also mix it with some other dishes that KFC has to offer to great effect. Why not give your coleslaw a spicy twist, or balance out some creamy mash and gravy with a hit of peppery heat?
2. KFC Sauce
That’s right – the classic KFC dipping sauce isn’t at the top of this list!
Originally known as ‘Finger Lickin’ Good sauce’, KFC changed the name of this sauce during the coronavirus pandemic to discourage transmission of the virus.
Despite the name change, however, it’s still the same sauce we all know and love.
KFC sauce is actually a blend of many different sauces and ingredients. Containing a mix of ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, pickle juice, onion, vinegar, and more, KFC sauce is a complex and incredibly flavorful sauce that happens to go perfectly with practically everything that KFC has to offer.
It’s smoky, slightly sweet, and with a tangy hit that works wonders with tender chicken. It tastes very similar to Chick-Fil-A sauce, so you know it’s a great pairing for chicken.
Although it was designed to go with KFC’s crispy chicken tenders, you can enjoy this tasty sauce with whatever you’re ordering!
While KFC sauce is darned-near perfection, the signature blend still isn’t the best sauce that KFC has to offer (a controversial opinion, we know).
So let’s take a look at which of KFC’s dips tops its iconic sauce!
1. Honey BBQ
The third (and final) honey-based sauce on our list, KFC’s honey BBQ isn’t just the best of the three – it’s the best sauce KFC has to offer!
Its simple combination of sweet honey and tangy, smoky BBQ sauce is a match made in heaven, and one that’s only improved by adding KFC’s delicious crispy fried chicken into the mix.
But that’s not all you can use it for – in fact, there’s barely anything at KFC that doesn’t pair great with this delicious sauce! Dip your fries in it for a tangy hit of flavor, or add it to your coleslaw to add a burst of smoky BBQ goodness.
You can also slather corn in it, where the sweetness of the honey works great with the juicy corn. Or why not mix it with potatoes and gravy for a richer, tastier experience?
Yes, there’s pretty much nothing that can’t be improved by this delicious sauce!
While the other honey sauces on this list can be overpoweringly sweet, honey BBQ balances this out with the perfect blend of BBQ sauce; as a result, neither flavor is overwhelming.
It’s sweet, smoky, tangy, and has just the slightest bit of heat to round it all out. What more could you ask for?
While it’s not technically a sauce, we have to give a shout-out to KFC’s iconic gravy! There isn’t any fast food chain that has a gravy that can match KFC’s, and its rich and meaty taste makes it a fantastic addition to more than just mashed potatoes.
Made with the juices leftover from frying the chicken, KFC gravy is packed with flavor and is perfect for slathering your chicken in. It also makes a great dip for fries, adds a ton of flavor to corn or biscuits, and even adds a whole new dimension to slaw.
So while it might not be a sauce on KFC’s menu, their gravy is almost better than some of the sauces they do offer!
What Goes Best With KFC Sauces?
The taste of a sauce isn’t the only thing that matters – sometimes, the most important thing is what you pair it with.
While KFC’s best sauces can go with pretty much anything on their menu, some sauces are at their best when added to the right dish.
For example, ketchup works best with fries or in a sandwich, and simply dipping your wings in won’t let you get the most out of it (unless you like that – we don’t judge!). Similarly, their honey sauce is the perfect addition to biscuits; while you can also use it with chicken, the sweet honey can be overwhelmingly sweet if you don’t have anything to balance it out.
A lot of what pairs best with which sauce mostly comes down to personal preference, but it’s still a good idea to consider which flavors will work best together. If you’re a fan of the taste of KFC’s spicy chicken but you aren’t into the heat, then classic ranch can mellow out the spice while bringing some great flavors of its own.
On the other hand, you can add some more spice to other items with a splash of hot sauce, or use honey BBQ to bring out the smoky spices in KFC’s iconic batter.
The choice is yours!
And there you have it – every sauce from KFC listed, reviewed, and ranked!
All of these sauces are a great option for the next time you’re enjoying some delicious fried chicken, and each has their own unique merits that set them apart from each other.
Of course, which sauce is actually the best comes down to your own personal preference at the end of the day, but hopefully our ranking has given you an idea of how to separate the best from the rest!
KFC’s chicken is delicious on its own, but you’re definitely missing out if you aren’t pairing it with one of their tasty sauces. So now that you’ve seen our list and covered all 7 of the delicious sauces that KFC has to offer, you can give them a try for yourself and see whether or not your opinion matches ours.
So next time you’re enjoying a meal at KFC, try out one (or why not all?) of these sauces! Enjoy!