Fried chicken is the new bacon.
The iconic dish isn't just a crispy, poultry treat on a lazy day. In fact, it might be one of the most popular foods on social media at the moment. Specifically, Instagram.
Foodbeast Publisher, Elie Ayrouth, pointed out on the latest Foodbeast Ketchup Podcast that different foodie Instagrammers are breaking the platform's algorithm by posting pictures of fried chicken, a role that was once filled by bacon many years ago in the heyday of the foodie renaissance.
The average fried chicken post has more engagement and likes than any other food right now. We used some food photos from our buddy Paul of @paulsfoodhaul to illustrate how fried chicken is cracking the code, as you can see below.
Data was culled from 15 different food influencer's Instagram accounts. Five different photos were stacked together, and if fried chicken was in that list, it would pull exponentially more likes and engagement, Ayrouth explained.
It's not like the influencers are doing it on purpose, either. If you look at most food blogger's Instagram feeds, there'll be one fried chicken photo for every ten food photos.
Fried chicken just blows up.
In the podcast, Ayrouth mentions that some food bloggers even admit to frequenting less than exceptional chicken spots, like Raising Cane's, simply for the likes.
While Raising Cane's makes a decent chicken tender, and their dipping sauce is pretty delicious, what brings influencers back seems to be the unexplainable amount of Instagram likes and engagement that each photo from the chicken finger chain brings.
The podcast touches on all the possible reasons why fried chicken is suddenly so popular. Reasons include the taboo behind not being able to eat it every day, the visual texture created by that crispy breading, or the that there's a variation of the dish in practically every culture the makes fried chicken a common denominator.
A simpler reason for this fried phenomenon, Evan Lancaster points out:
"The aesthetic will always carry the joy."
If you're one who lives for posting food photos on Instagram, snap a couple fried chicken pics and see how they stack up compared to the other dishes on your feed. Even if nothing comes of it, you'll just have some delicious fried chicken to munch on.