By Gary Symons
TLL Editor in Chief
Kansas City Chief’s star tight end Travis Kelce—aka Taylor Swift’s boyfriend—has a new line of frozen BBQ dinners at Walmart.
Kelce is said to love Kansas City barbecue almost as much as certain pop stars, as it’s rumored he can often be found at Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que enjoying the burnt ends or meat-packed Z-Man sandwich.
Speculation had risen some months ago that Kelce was going to make some big moves in the food and beverage licensing category after his company Kelce Food Group LLC, filed a trademark for the name “Travis Kelce’s Kitchen” to make prepared entrees and frozen foods.
Now, the star player has confirmed the rumors, releasing a collection of five entrees as Walmart exclusives, all based on Kansas City barbecue.
The Travis Kelce’s Kitchen line includes Burnt Ends Mac & Cheese, Burnt Ends BBQ Baked Beans, Sausage BBQ Baked Beans, Seasoned Brisket Burnt Ends in BBQ Sauce, Seasoned Sliced Brisket in BBQ Sauce, and Sausage & Meatball Marinara with Peppers and Onions. Kelce’s one-pound meals are all fully prepared.
The launch surprisingly came with little or no fanfare, as the line was actually discovered by shoppers at Walmart, and the news reported in the publication Parade. A Walmart representative later issued a brief statement to Today.com, saying, “With the launch of Travis Kelce’s Kitchen, Kelce aims to share his passion for great food, especially the hearty BBQ that Kansas City is famous for.”
Also, given Kelce had already created a food company and trademarked a brand, his foray into barbecue could perhaps have been predicted. When the Super Bowl winning tight end moved to Kansas, he told the publication Inside Hook about his obsession with the city’s style of barbecue.
“It was definitely a match made in heaven when I came here,” Kelce said. “The local BBQ spots are unbelievable. My first couple months here I was going to a different spot ever week and my physique wasn’t where it needed to be as a professional athlete. I had to cut back a little bit, but I usually get it at least once or twice a month.
“I have a few favorite spots throughout the city. I love Q39. I love Jack Stack Barbecue. That’s white tablecloth-style barbecue so it’s a little bit fancier, but still you can get messy if you want to if you have some Tide PODS. Then there’s Kansas City Joe’s, which was originally Oklahoma Joe’s. That’s the famous gas station barbecue but you can’t go wrong with Arthur Bryant’s or Gates. I’ve been to just about all of them, but you can’t go to these BBQ joints with a white shirt. If you do, you’re definitely risking it all.”