Taco Bell and Pizza Hut Expanding Menus to Include Cool New Products!

Mike McAninch
by Mike McAninch | June 11, 2012 @ 3:22 pm | 1 

Yum! Brands Incorporated (NYSE:YUM) announced over the weekend a two pronged attack to expand its menu offerings. For those of you who are unaware Yum! Is the parent company of Taco Bell, KFC, Pizza Hut, and WingStreet. If you are looking to gorge on fast food they provide 38,000 locations in 110 countries to help your waistline suffer. Yum! Brands was spun-off from PepsiCo (NYSE:PEP) in 1997 and at the time boasted ownership of A&W and Long John Silver’s in addition to the current portfolio. In December 2011 Yum! Brands completed the sale of A&W and Long John Silver’s to A Great American Brand LLC.

Starting this July Taco Bell is rolling out a new menu called Cantina Bell with items such as the Cantina Bowl and Cantina Burrito. These offerings are directly poised to compete with Chipotle Mexican Grills (NYSE:CMG) higher end menu offerings but sell for less than $5. New ingredients at Taco Bell locations will include cilantro rice, black beans, and corn salsa. The venture is in collaboration with celebrity chef Lorena Garcia who will be one of the chefs on the upcoming season of Top Chef Masters on Bravo.

In the meantime the menu at Pizza Hut is also getting a bit of a shakeup. Moving away from their traditionally ultra greasy pan pizza the newest additions to the menu are four individual thin crust gourmet pizzas. The Quattro Fromaggio, BBQ Chicken, White Pizza with Garlic Shrimp, and Heat Lovers pizzas are priced at just $5 each for a limited time.

Yum! Brands is trading down 1.15% at 63.82 this morning, trailing the Dow Jones Industrial Average by around 1%.

Foodbeat’s Take: Not a fan of either Pizza Hut or Taco Bell but if the new menu items are a cut above their usual products I will have to give them a try. These idea’s certainly rank a lot higher than the Doritos Locos Tacos do on my radar but as North America moves away from junk food I move away from investing in it.

Sources:  The Motley Fool, The Wall Street Journal