Why Starbucks' New Chicken Breakfast Sandwich Has Disappeared

The newest breakfast offering from Starbucks seemed so promising — a sweet-and-savory chicken, maple butter, and egg sandwich. 

The seasonal chicken sandwich was unveiled as part of a summer lineup of food and beverages that hit locations on June 21. The sandwich was described by Starbucks as having maple butter spread that was added to a toasted oat biscuit roll with chicken and eggs. But the sandwich was removed from menus just five days later, reports The Wall Street Journal, and the unsold sandwiches were thrown away (This wasn't the first time Starbucks added a chicken sandwich to its menu, with several being sold by the coffee retailer over the years, as well as a biscuit sandwich with chicken sausage and bacon from 2017 to 2020).

The most recent breakfast chicken sandwich was just one of many that have been added to fast food restaurants' menus in recent years. Recently, Wendy's added a Hot Honey Chicken Biscuit and in 2021, Taco John's added Honey BBQ Fried Chicken Tacos to its menu. 

Starbucks' sandwich did not meet quality standards

Unfortunately for chicken sandwich fans, Starbucks' breakfast sandwich was not long-lived. After it was unveiled, reports were made on social media that some people were sicken by the sandwich, but none of the claims were ever verified, reports NBC News. Starbucks says the allegations that the sandwich caused illnesses are not accurate, explaining that it pulled the chicken sandwich because it did not meet the company's quality standards, according to Today. "The quality issue that was identified by Starbucks would not lead to food borne illness and any reports linking the stop sale to illness are inaccurate," Starbucks said in a statement.

The Wall Street Journal said the Starbucks breakfast sandwich wasn't listed on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration website as a product that might have caused a food-borne illness. Starbucks said that stopping the sale of a food item is not unheard of and in this situation was done out of caution, according to NBC News.

Reviews of the Starbucks chicken sandwich also weren't very positive, with Bon Appétit calling it "bland" and a review on The Takeout saying it didn't have much flavor and that the chicken was a real letdown.