Here Are the Nominees for The Fasties, Thrillist's First-Ever Fast Food Awards

John Samels/Thrillist
John Samels/Thrillist

Long before the advent of the Popeyes Chicken Sandwich and the runaway plant-based burger trend, we've had a borderline-obsessive focus on telling you about the latest from chains like Wendy's and Burger King, how to order from In-N-Out Burger's secret menu, and even how to get, say, your favorite nuggets for free. Now, we're taking our fast food expertise and our unmatched hunger for all things served in grease-stained bags to the next level. 

Introducing The Fasties, Thrillist's first-ever fast food awards, arriving on Wednesday, February 19. Think glitzy TV and movie award show, but to honor the best things that came out of fast food restaurants in 2019, and uh, decidedly shorter.

The 16 award categories range from Best Sauce to Best New Menu Item of the Year. We'll finally put the "Fried Chicken Sandwich Wars" to rest (at least, for now) by presenting a winner in the Best Fried Chicken Sandwich category. Among the highest honors are Regional Chain of the Year and Chain of the Year. The Most Valuable Pickle (MVP) award will finally give the savory sandwich toppings the recognition they deserve. There won't be a celebrity red carpet, but there will be a ketchup carpet and an "In Memoriam" reel honoring the menu items we lost throughout the year. 

MORE: What's the difference between fast food and fast casual?

Yes, handing out golden burger trophies to fast food chains may sound ridiculous, but... that's kind of the point. We take fast food seriously, but we also don't take ourselves too seriously. Look no further than our wild, hour-long podcast about Taco Bell or this super-specific ranking of McDonald's dipping sauces. The Fasties are the ultimate embodiment of this intense -- yet playful -- focus on fries, Frosties, and everything in between. Of course, Thrillist isn't the first to hand out fast food awards, and we probably won't be the last. 

The 2020 Fasties winners will be announced via an awards show on Thrillist's YouTube channel and here on just in time for lunch at 12pm ET on February 19. In the meantime, grab a chicken sandwich, check out the nominees, and vote for the People's Choice in a few of the categories below.

Here are the 2020 Fasties Categories and Nominees

Best Fried Chicken Sandwich

  • Popeyes - Chicken Sandwich
  • Chick-fil-A - Chicken Sandwich
  • McDonald’s - Buttermilk Crispy Chicken Sandwich
  • Carl’s Jr. - Big Fillet Chicken Sandwich
  • KFC - Crispy Colonel Sandwich

Best Burger

  • Culver’s - ButterBurger Cheese
  • In-N-Out Burger - Double Double
  • McDonald’s - Quarter Pounder With Cheese
  • Whataburger - Double Meat Whataburger
  • Wendy’s - Dave’s Double

Best Plant-Based Burger

  • White Castle - Impossible Slider
  • Carl’s Jr. - Beyond BBQ Star
  • Carl’s Jr. - Beyond Famous Star With Cheese
  • A&W - Beyond Burger
  • Burger King - Impossible Whopper

Best Fries

  • Arby’s - Curly Fries
  • McDonald’s - Fries
  • Chick-fil-A - Waffle Potato Fries
  • Taco Bell - Nacho Fries
  • Checkers/Rally’s - Famous Seasoned Fries

Best Taco

  • Del Taco - The Del Taco
  • Taco Bell - Crunchy Taco
  • El Pollo Loco - Chicken Taco Al Carbon
  • Jack in the Box - Taco
  • Taco John’s - Crispy Taco

Best Dessert

  • Yoshinoya - Cheesecake
  • Taco Bell - Cinnamon Sticks
  • Wendy’s - Frosty
  • Culver’s - Vanilla Custard
  • Jollibee - Peach Mango Pie

Best Chicken Tenders

  • Raising Cane’s - Chicken Fingers
  • Popeyes - Tenders
  • Culver’s - Original Chicken Tenders
  • Chick-fil-A - Chick-n-Strips
  • Long John Silver’s - Chicken Tenders

Best Breakfast Sandwich

  • Subway - Bacon, Egg, and Cheese
  • Chick-fil-A - Chicken Biscuit
  • Wendy’s - Breakfast Baconator
  • Taco Bell - Breakfast Crunchwrap with Bacon
  • McDonald’s - Bacon, Egg, and Cheese McGriddle

Best Sauce

  • Culver’s - Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese Sauce
  • Chick-fil-A - Chick-fil-A Sauce
  • Raising Cane’s - Cane’s Sauce
  • McDonald’s - Honey Mustard
  • Whataburger - Spicy Ketchup

Best New Menu Item of the Year

  • Popeyes - Chicken Sandwich
  • Burger King - Impossible Whopper
  • KFC Kentucky - Fried Wings
  • Taco Bell - Black Bean Crunchwrap Supreme
  • Chick-fil-A - Mac & Cheese

​​​​​​Best Coffee

  • Culver’s
  • Chick-fil-A
  • McDonald’s
  • Sonic Drive-In
  • Jack in the Box

Regional Chain of the Year

  • Culver’s
  • In-N-Out Burger
  • Del Taco
  • Whataburger
  • Bojangles'

Chain of the Year

  • Popeyes
  • Burger King
  • Chick-fil-A
  • Wendy’s
  • White Castle

Menu Item of the Decade

  • Taco Bell - Doritos Locos Taco
  • KFC - Double Down
  • White Castle - Impossible Slider
  • McDonald’s - Szechuan Sauce
  • Popeyes - Chicken Sandwich

Lifetime Achievement Award

Most Valuable Pickle (MVP)

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Tony Merevick is Senior News Editor at Thrillist. Send news tips to and follow him on Twitter @tonymerevick.