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Any Other Jack-in-the-Box Lovers Out There?

Leancuisine Aug 10, 2009 12:54 AM

Surely I can't be the only one who loves this place. Granted, I haven't had a burger at JitB in several years, but I find many of their other menu items to be fantastic.

After frequenting god-knows-how-many other chains, I find myself coming back to JitB based on a few constants: excellent (make that pretty damn good) customer service, tasty chicken, a frequent rotation of new desserts, and delicious small bites (i.e., fries, chicken tenders, jalapeno poppers).

My SO thinks I'm crazy for being such a regular customer. Any other chowhounds who find themselves oddly drawn to this joint?

  1. Barbarella Apr 21, 2011 10:57 AM

    My daughter loves this place so much, the last time we were in Cali I got some tacos to go, froze and took home in cooler to NJ. Cannot get out east.

    1. d
      daydream Apr 13, 2011 05:45 PM

      Hell yes I love Jack! I'm a college student. Their tacos are what my soul craves when I'm drunk. It's science, folks!

      Okay, what I REALLY want when I'm drunk is an authentic burrito from my favorite taqueria, but Jack is always open and close by when I need them. ;D

      1 Reply
      1. re: daydream
        callitasicit Apr 18, 2011 02:21 AM

        I visited a JIB when I was in San Diego and had the best fast food chain milkshake ever. I wish that we had one in Canada:(

      2. e
        Encinitan Feb 12, 2011 05:15 PM

        I like them for their breakfast sandwiches, which are available any time they are open. Nothing like having a quick breakfast type meal late at night.

        1. ChrisOC Feb 10, 2011 07:12 AM

          I love the Jumbo Jack, but living in New Jersey, I seldom get to have one.

          1. a
            aynrandgirl Feb 9, 2011 12:42 PM

            Jack in the Box is great. The Ultimate Cheeseburger is deliciously excessive, and they have great shakes. Now if only they'd expand east of Texas. SE Florida could use them.

            2 Replies
            1. re: aynrandgirl
              bbqboy Feb 9, 2011 02:50 PM

              They just Expanded to KC and they love burgers and FF. Should be a match made in Heaven.

              1. re: aynrandgirl
                pickychicky1979 Feb 10, 2011 07:54 AM

                We have them in Southern Illinois.

              2. g
                GK in SO Dec 29, 2010 11:27 AM

                I used to be a JITB lover, but now, not so much...the quality seems to have taken a dive since the 70s.

                The menu items I used to crave (each, during its somewhat limited tenure on the menu):

                1) Mushroom burger (garlicky, parsley seasoned mushrooms on buttery grilled sourdough)

                2) Gyros - with lots of extra onions and sauce!

                3) Frings - a combo of fries and onion rings in one bag! And, back then, the onion rings were actually pretty good, now they're downright terrible.

                I also used to love their burgers with that "secret sauce" type stuff (orangey/reddish in color, but oddly tasty!!).

                4 Replies
                1. re: GK in SO
                  Johnny West Dec 29, 2010 11:42 AM

                  Count me as a fan but, sadly, I go only once a quarter as I am
                  working on losing a few pounds. I have the Jumbo Jack, no
                  fries, and a large chocolate shake.

                  "We could kiss...."

                  1. re: Johnny West
                    Ruth Lafler Dec 29, 2010 03:08 PM

                    The shakes are another item where JitB blows McDonalds out of the water: not only do they taste better and have a better consistency, but they come with whipped cream and a cherry. I had the seasonal eggnog shake yesterday and it really tasted like egg nog (artificial rum flavoring?).

                  2. re: GK in SO
                    mucho gordo Dec 29, 2010 12:29 PM

                    The 'secret sauce' is reminiscent of 1000 Island dressing

                    1. re: GK in SO
                      daydream Apr 13, 2011 05:44 PM

                      Re: Frings

                      Message: OMG


                    2. ChrisOC Dec 12, 2010 07:46 AM

                      No Jack in the Box here in South Jersey, but when I go to Az one of he first things I want is a Jumbo Jack

                      1. mucho gordo Dec 9, 2010 02:09 PM

                        Count me in, leancuisine. While not a 'lover' per se, I do consider them a cut above mcD

                        1. JerryMe Dec 8, 2010 05:44 PM

                          I can't respond on "What's for dinner" under Home Cooking, so yes, indeed, three of their obnoxiously, excellent, greasy tacos w/ lotsa hot sauce. And I'm so, so, so grateful. The yummy grease and hot sauce are still burning but OH so good.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: JerryMe
                            JerryMe Dec 9, 2010 03:48 PM

                            Here's an inside - take the mustard and mix it w/ the sweet and sour sauce offered - uber good.

                          2. RetiredChef Dec 20, 2009 09:25 AM

                            What JITB does really well is their bus for their burgers are probably the best of any fast food chains. They actually have good flavor and contribute to the burger.

                            They also have/had??? A chipotle ?sirloin? Breakfast burrito that was the best fast food breakfast item I ever ate. I actually found myself going back to get that item which is very unusual since I frequent fast food about 10 times a year.

                            However those tacos they serve should be banned.

                            8 Replies
                            1. re: RetiredChef
                              bbqboy Dec 20, 2009 07:17 PM

                              Oh chef, c'mon. Deep fried Jack tacos are the stoner food of all time. Plus, if one is in an area
                              of the country where REAL deep fried tacos don't exist, well then a 2/99 set of tacos fills the bill.

                              1. re: bbqboy
                                KaimukiMan Dec 21, 2009 12:31 PM

                                "real deep fried tacos"? could you elaborate? is that different from a chimichanga?

                                1. re: KaimukiMan
                                  Ruth Lafler Dec 21, 2009 02:04 PM

                                  A chimichanga is a deep-fried burrito. I believe bbqboy is referring to what is known as a taco dorado (golden taco) with a fried shell (on which the American tacos including the Jack-in-the-Box version are based), as opposed to the soft taco that is standard in taquerias.

                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                    bbqboy Dec 22, 2009 07:07 AM

                                    KM, Ruth summed that up nicely.
                                    Variations include puffy tacos and the ones with peas in them that I grew up with in Kansas.
                                    There is one tiny chain in KC called In-A-Tub that clips the tacos closed and plunges them in the Deep Fryer. Wonderfully wrong.

                                    1. re: bbqboy
                                      KaimukiMan Dec 22, 2009 06:35 PM

                                      peas in tacos. well, why not.

                                      i guess most of the taco's i grew up with were 'fried taco's, but we just called them tacos and the others "soft tacos". live and learn.

                                      thanks for the clairfication bbq (and ruth), and I bow to your knowledge of stoner food as well. as for jitb taco's they are so oddly intriguing, but then so is a traffic accident.

                                2. re: bbqboy
                                  RetiredChef Dec 22, 2009 08:48 AM


                                  I will let you be the Chowhound Expert on stoner food and I defer to your expertise in this area.

                                  I now stand corrected.

                                  1. re: RetiredChef
                                    bbqboy Dec 22, 2009 09:33 AM

                                    I by no means claim to be THE expert on said subject :)

                                    reference point:

                                    1. re: bbqboy
                                      RetiredChef Dec 22, 2009 09:37 AM


                                      I stand corrected again!

                              2. Ruth Lafler Dec 8, 2009 12:05 PM

                                JITB is the nearest fast food place to my office, so when I was starving this morning (worked until 2:15 a.m., up again at 6:30) I popped in to check out the breakfast options. I went for the chicken breakfast biscuit, which was only okay. Although actually, unlike most fried foods I thought it tasted better after it cooled.

                                The hash brown sticks, however, were by far the best fast-food version of hash browns I've ever had -- they blow the mediocre (bland, with a weird almost waxy residue) hash browns at McD's out of the water.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                  bbqboy Dec 9, 2009 08:07 AM

                                  Regular breakfast jacks for .99 always satisfy.

                                2. p
                                  paprkutr Sep 21, 2009 09:47 PM

                                  Grew up on the greasy tacos, don't know what it is, but they are addicting. Have to add onion rings with them. Their breakfast biscuits are good too. Prefer this place to alot others. I know this stuff is not good for you, but their is something comforting about it.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: paprkutr
                                    NewDude Sep 21, 2009 10:56 PM

                                    No worries, man. We all know Jack LaLane wouldn't approve. It's either celery stick shakes or a sourdough jack and cheese. America, we have made our choice!

                                    But yeah, I make a run for the border a few times a year. They have a low fat menu, and quite frankly, it tastes just as good as their regular menu. I don't miss taco bell's nuclear waste fat gel oozing out of their regular tacos at all.

                                    As far as jack in the crack, I think they have a rice bowl with grilled chicken and veggies which is probably less unhealthy than their other items. I think the last time I got it with a fried egg roll though, so...

                                  2. n
                                    newkai Sep 21, 2009 09:41 PM

                                    I'm drawn to it by the occasional national commercials I see on TV - I would love to try it but the only ones on the East Coast are in North Carolina and that's a long way from NYC!

                                    1. t
                                      Timmy McTimmerson Sep 21, 2009 01:15 PM

                                      You're not the only one, I love it too! Sourdough combo is my fav, the Jumbo Jack for $1.29 destroys every other place's value menu.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: Timmy McTimmerson
                                        NewDude Sep 21, 2009 09:24 PM

                                        Dang man. You're gettin me hyped up for some Jack in the Crack greasebombs!

                                      2. c
                                        Chelsea422 Sep 4, 2009 09:13 AM

                                        If I had one near me, I would get me some tasty onion rings, a chicken fajita pita, chicken strips with buttermilk ranch dressing and those tacos that are so bad they're so good. they always had delicious soda for some reason too. why do they run out of chicken fajita pitas all the time though?
                                        I grew up with Jack in the Box in the midwest, and there's none to be seen where I am now, in NJ, a wasteland that has only the most typical fast-food joints for the most part, I'm stuck with McDonald's (never go) and Wendy's and Burger King. bleh.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Chelsea422
                                          RCTRIPLEFRESH5 Sep 4, 2009 10:00 AM

                                          amen brother. nj sucks as far as fast food goes. onloy good places is fuddruckers which is not wven close enough to me for me to go. cheeburger cheeburger is k too but costs an arm.

                                        2. a
                                          ArrowSmith Sep 1, 2009 11:49 AM

                                          I'd love to eat there, I hear they've got great sandwiches these days. I just can't abide the grease bombs and the calorie-bombs of their "fresh" sandwiches. It's just not part of my diet.

                                          1. Phurstluv Aug 27, 2009 02:08 PM

                                            I also really like the hearty breakfast bowl, but I don't even want to know how many calories, etc is in it, I only had it 3x and that's enough! And I don't eat anything the rest of the day..... but with the sausage, bacon & hash browns mixed together with cheese, and I add hot sauce, it's damn good. Basically a good hangover cure.

                                            1. r
                                              RCTRIPLEFRESH5 Aug 23, 2009 08:39 PM

                                              ive always wanted to eat at a jack in the box however her ein new jersey we are lacking those.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: RCTRIPLEFRESH5
                                                bbison Aug 27, 2009 09:53 AM

                                                The ciabatta double bacon cheeseburger and breakfast sandwich they had were damn good, but then they went away. The sirloin stuff and mini-burgers are nasty. They still have a few winners though.

                                              2. n
                                                NewDude Aug 17, 2009 12:11 AM

                                                Ha ha, yeah the sourdough jack and curly fries were guilty pleasures, indeed. Are they still on the menu?

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: NewDude
                                                  littlew1ng Aug 17, 2009 07:19 AM

                                                  i don't know, i've lived for two years now in an area without a JB within a 150-mile radius :(

                                                  1. re: NewDude
                                                    Phurstluv Aug 17, 2009 09:17 AM

                                                    Yes they are, and they're less than a mile away from me - some days it's hard to resist!!!

                                                  2. littlew1ng Aug 16, 2009 04:56 PM

                                                    oh yeah and curly fries. how could i forget how awesome their curly fries are.

                                                    1. littlew1ng Aug 16, 2009 04:56 PM

                                                      awesome jalapeno poppers, sourdough jack and a spicy chicken sandwich that puts wendy's to shame. seriously, i miss JB so much for awesome late-night drive-through. Pretty good breakfast stuff, too.

                                                      1. s
                                                        schmoopy Aug 13, 2009 10:29 PM

                                                        I love Jack in the Box... ESPECIALLY those greasy tacos!! You can't compare them to authentic Mexican tacos of which we have so many to choose from here in So Cal. They are a food item unto themselves and you just have to enjoy them for what they are - the greasy, almost translucent taco shell (oily on the bottom, crispy around the edges), the mystery meat filling, the "cheese", and the wilty lettuce... it all comes together in a wonderful, inexplicable way to form that lovely and delicious JitB taco. Yum! By the way, does anyone remember the Moby Jack? It was their fish sandwich. It was always such a treat to stop there on our way to our yearly summer camping trips up north of Malibu. I think it was the only time that we ever went to Jack in the Box and it was such a treat. That was back in the 60s! I'm not sure when they stopped making them but it was my childhood favorite fast food item!

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: schmoopy
                                                          lemons Aug 17, 2009 08:56 AM

                                                          What an excellent description of those tacos you write, Schmoopy. And yes, I still miss the Moby Jack. Two tacos for an appetizer and then an MJ...I remember listening to the Watergate hearings on the car radio while waiting in the drive-through for them.

                                                          1. re: schmoopy
                                                            LA Buckeye Fan Sep 1, 2009 01:27 PM

                                                            You write poetry, Schmoopy. Orange-grease-running-down-my-sleeve poetry.

                                                          2. k
                                                            kjen Aug 13, 2009 01:08 PM

                                                            I love it! My favorite is their chicken fajita pita. I also think they have the best onion rings of any other fast food joint.

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: kjen
                                                              Leancuisine Aug 13, 2009 10:10 PM

                                                              kjen and Phursluv: you just described my two weaknesses, jalapeno poppers and chicken fajita pita. Their poppers are a decadent cheese bomb that go down way too easily.

                                                              I remember in the 80s, after the ecoli burger-death scare, this chain was stigmatized. Then something happened; in the early 2000s, they created kitschy, talked-about commercials, and stepped-up the quality of their food, along with the service. Viva la Jack-in-the-Box.

                                                              1. re: Leancuisine
                                                                free sample addict aka Tracy L Aug 23, 2009 03:01 PM

                                                                The fajita snacks are good too. The calorie content on the regular pita is pretty good and it is very filling compared to other fast food joints.

                                                            2. m
                                                              melissa511 Aug 13, 2009 12:39 PM

                                                              Even Jonathon Gold (Pulitzer prize-winning food columnist for the LA Weekly) has admitted he likes the stuffed jalapenos. Me too. They can be lethal to a white shirt, though.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: melissa511
                                                                Phurstluv Aug 13, 2009 12:47 PM

                                                                They undoubtedly make the best ff jalapeno poppers. Ever. Their tacos - not so much, we have better tacos in SoCal that come off of roach coaches.

                                                              2. Ruth Lafler Aug 13, 2009 10:10 AM

                                                                I'm not much of a fast-food person, but I love their commercials for their mini-sirloin burgers, with the "little people" cowboys and the "cows the size of schnauzers but they're cattle"! Anyone tried the burgers themselves?

                                                                2 Replies
                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                  TomSwift Aug 13, 2009 10:27 AM

                                                                  Not for another 2 hours. I think those commercials are inspired and although I may not actually eat them all for lunch today I'm going to try them. I'll report back. Bear in mind that, corporate policy for uniformity notwithstanding, the Jacks I'll go to here in So Cal may be atypical.

                                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                    Jen76 Aug 23, 2009 08:29 PM

                                                                    The commercial is better than the burgers. ;)

                                                                    I tried them twice at a friend's insistence that they were actually really good. They weren't. Dry, bland, bleh. But, I LOVE the commercial and especially the "cows the size of schnauzers" line.

                                                                  2. t
                                                                    TomSwift Aug 10, 2009 09:31 AM

                                                                    Coupon good for 2 free tacos (no purchase necessary) for tomorrow 8/11. I think you can get the link on the Chains board. Not so good tacos, perhaps even offensive, but still free.

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: TomSwift
                                                                      NewDude Aug 10, 2009 02:26 PM

                                                                      I tried the tacos once. They deep fry them. They were literally as hard as plastic. I still ate them, though. Sometimes, I just wonder...

                                                                    2. n
                                                                      NewDude Aug 10, 2009 02:00 AM

                                                                      Jack in the Crack was part of the bad ol' days for me. When I was overweight, and absolutely reliant on fast food instead of cooking. Or even microwaving. I really enjoyed going through the drive thru, ordering a grease bomb of some kind (they had a sourdough burger I used to order), some ridiculously oversalted and deep fried curly fries to go along with that. Topped off by a dehydrating soda. It was awesome but really bad for your health.

                                                                      The place was admittedly very popular as a post clubbing, post inebriation must stop. Hey, it was open, and it was greasy. That's all that was asked!

                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                      1. re: NewDude
                                                                        Leancuisine Aug 10, 2009 11:23 AM

                                                                        Can't argue with your points. Admittedly, I patronize JitB approximately 3-4 times a month. I am not, nor have I ever been, overweight. In fact, I consider myself to be in pretty darn good shape and health. I just can't seem to get past my craving for this place.

                                                                        1. re: NewDude
                                                                          KaimukiMan Aug 13, 2009 08:11 PM

                                                                          wow, was like reading a mirror. Waddaya mean an ultimate bacon cheeseburger combo isn't a snack?

                                                                          1. re: KaimukiMan
                                                                            Phurstluv Aug 13, 2009 08:14 PM

                                                                            You are a riot, my friend!!! Love those, btw!!

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