Chick-fil-A brings back popular menu item after 'pent-up demand'

Chick-fil-A is giving customers what they want this summer: Barbecue.

The fast-food chain announced Monday that it's going to start rolling out the Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich across the U.S. this week. The BBQ sandwich, which the company first introduced in 2017, was a fan favorite that year.

To accompany the tangy entree, Chick-fil-A said it would also offer a Strawberry Passion Tea Lemonade at restaurants nationwide. Another "summertime favorite," the Peach Milkshake, will also resurface this summer.

“We are so excited for the return of the Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich and to introduce our new Strawberry Passion Tea Lemonade, two seasonal items that evoke the carefree delights of summer,” Amanda Norris, Chick-fil-A executive director of menu & packaging, said in an online statement. “Customers loved the Smokehouse BBQ Bacon sandwich when it was available in 2017, and we think it pairs perfectly with the Strawberry Passion Tea Lemonade. We hope customers will enjoy these warm weather favorites all summer long.”

Norris told Business Insider there was some "pent-up demand" to bring the sandwich back — and the company listened.

"[The sandwich] features Chick-fil-A’s grilled chicken breast, which is marinated with a special blend of seasonings and grilled for a tender and juicy backyard-grilled taste," Chick-fil-A described in a blog post. "The sandwich is served on a toasted, buttered sweet yeast bun with Colby-Jack cheese, green leaf lettuce, bacon hand-tossed in a brown sugar and pepper blend, and a zesty Smokehouse BBQ Sauce crafted specifically for the entrée."

Chick-fil-A's Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich. (Chick-fil-A/Handout)

If you're eager to take a bite out of the summer sandwich, you don't want to wait. The Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich will only be available for a limited time, from May 20 through Aug. 24.

In March, Chick-fil-A revealed four potential menu items that "didn't make the cut." While some items may be popular, chefs Christy Cook and Shona Jonson said they likely won't make it out of the kitchen if they're too costly or difficult to replicate.

“We have certain criteria every potential menu item must meet before it’s added to our menu,” explained Jonson, adding items must "meet the speed of service requirements."