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Wendy's

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    Score: 4.80. Votes: 5

    The little red packets of viscous hot sauce at the fast food giant have a cult following of rabid fans who will do whatever it takes to get their hands on large quantities. One such fan of the sauce commented online, "Are there any Wendy's employees or managers out there that will mail me an entire case of Hot Chili Seasoning?  I swear this is not a joke. I love the stuff. I tip extra cash to Wendy's workers to get big handfuls of the stuff." Well, there's no need to tip any Wendy's employees since now you can make as much as you want of the spicy sauce in your own kitchen.

    The ingredients listed on the real Hot Chili Seasoning are water, corn syrup, salt, distilled vinegar, natural flavors, xanthan gum, and extractives of paprika. We'll use many of those same ingredients for our clone, but we'll substitute gelatin for the xanthan gum (a thickener) to get the slightly gooey consistency right, and for the natural flavor and color we'll use cayenne pepper, cumin, paprika and garlic powder, then filter the particles out with a fine wire mesh strainer after they've contributed just what the sauce needs.

    This recipe makes 5 ounces of sauce—that costs just pennies to make—and it's just the right amount to fit nicely into a used hot sauce shaker bottle.

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    Score: 4.88. Votes: 211

    Dave Thomas, Wendy's late founder, started serving this chili in 1969, the year the first Wendy's opened its doors. Over the years the recipe has changed a bit, but this Wendy's copycat chili recipe is a great version of the one served in the early 90s. Try topping it with some chopped onion and Cheddar cheese, just as you can request in the restaurant.

    Click here to see more amazing Wendy's copycat recipes.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Wendy’s claims it took three years to develop the hit chicken sandwich that’s built on a croissant roll and slathered with the chain’s secret maple glaze. Now I’ll show you how to re-create four of these sandwiches at home, all with the same components, and you'll dig how easy it is. To speed up the process, we’ll incorporate shortcuts, including pre-breaded frozen chicken and Pillsbury Crescent rolls in a tube.

    For the chicken, find frozen chicken breasts or large tenderloins with a homestyle breading. Tyson’s Southern Style Breast Tenderloins work great if you pick out the biggest pieces from the bag. The breading on this chicken is similar to what you get at Wendy’s.

    Rather than making croissants from scratch, which is a time-consuming task, we’ll use the very common Pillsbury dough from a tube. Pillsbury’s “Crescents” are not true croissants, even though they look and taste similar to croissants. Real croissant dough rises with yeast and would blow out a Pillsbury paper tube in a day or two, even if chilled. For that reason, Pillsbury uses baking powder in products that usually call for yeast, such as cinnamon rolls and croissants. Baking powder is a chemical leavening agent activated by heat, and it will remain stable in the refrigerated section of your supermarket, safely inside the paper tubes until you bake it.

    Instead of cooking the rolls as directed on the package, we'll roll the dough using the technique below, form it in a 3½-inch ring mold, and bake it. This will make perfect croissant buns which we can slice and toast for our sandwich. If you don’t have a 3½-inch ring mold you can use a ring from a canning jar or a biscuit cutter. If the diameter is less than 3½ inches, just form the dough using the smaller mold, then remove the mold and press down on the dough until it is 3½ inches across. 

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    Score: 4.41. Votes: 51

    First served at Wendy's in 1969, the Frosty continues as a favorite in fast food shakes. This clone recipe is an improved version of the recipe that appeared in my first book, Top Secret Recipes. I've designed this new version for a one-person serving and have given it less of an intense chocolate flavor that's more like the real thing. I find the smaller yield also helps to make the shake blend better.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 4.75. Votes: 12

    When sales of this once limited-offering sandwich exceeded expectations, Wendy's made it a permanent menu item. Now you can re-create the spicy kick of the original with a secret blend of spices in the chicken's crispy coating. Follow the same stacking order as the original, and you will make four sandwich clones here at a fraction of the cost of the real thing.

    Source: Even More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    It may look like it's all chocolate, but Wendy's founder Dave Thomas thought that a purely chocolate frozen dairy dessert would overpower his burger and fries, so he mixed chocolate with vanilla to create his signature ultra-thick shake, and in 1969, the Frosty was born.

    My first crack at this iconic treat was revealed in a copycat recipe published 25 years ago that called for mixing milk with Nestle Quik and vanilla ice cream in a blender. Tasty? Sure it was. But the finished product was too runny, and the flavor wasn't perfect. That's why I recently holed myself up in the lab and created a formula that you now churn in a home ice cream maker until thick and creamy, and it tastes just like the real thing. Unlike my previous recipe which relied on pre-made ice cream and a drink mix, the scratch ingredients I used here allowed me to make small adjustments in flavor for a better match, and an ice cream maker is the perfect way to produce a thick, creamy consistency. So far, this is the best hack I've come up with to duplicate the treat that tests have shown is up to twice as thick as other famous desserts in a cup, including Dairy Queen's Blizzard and McDonald's McFlurry. 

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 3

    Of the four salads on Wendy's new Garden Sensations menu, this is the one that gets all the cloning requests. It's the sesame dressing that everyone's nuts about. The formula below gives you a nice 1 1/2 cups of the delicious stuff so it'll fit perfectly into a standard dressing cruet. Once you've got your dressing made, building the rest of the salad is a breeze.

    Check out my other Wendy's clone recipes here

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Unlocked by Todd Wilbur.

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    The Classic Greek Pita used the same salad base and dressing as the clone for the Chicken Caesar Pita, but replaces the chicken and Parmesan with a Greek topping that's a breeze to make. Even though Wendy's uses a pocketless pita that can be tough to find in stores, you can use the more common pocketed pita, just without opening the pocket. Instead, you heat up the pita, then fill up the center and fold it like a soft taco.  

    Source: Even More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 4

    Early in 1997 Wendy's introduced its selection of cold "Fresh Stuffed" pita sandwiches—a nice change of pace from the typical fast food fare. Basically what you're getting is a small salad wrapped in a warm pita bread. You might be saying to yourself "That doesn't sound like much for 3 bucks!" Then I would say, "Perhaps, but what if you could make a clone yourself for a mere fraction of that?" You would say, "Cool, man! Lay it on me." And then I would say, "Here you go." 

    Source: Even More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    In 1990 Wendy's not only added this new sandwich to its growing menu, but also added more international restaurants to the chain, including stores in Indonesia, Greece, Turkey, and Guatemala. Wendy's now claims more than 4,000 outlets around the world, with more than $3 billion in sales.

    This is an excellent sandwich if you like grilled chicken, and it contains only nine grams of fat, if you're counting.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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