When a chain gets top ratings in a Technomic survey, meaning respondents selected “very good” and “good” most often, Technomic follows with an open-ended question, asking: What items do you think are craveable?

Yesway was rated No. 1 for craveable food, and the answer, of course, is burritos. The burritos are hand-rolled in the chain’s central kitchen and are available in all 435 Yesway and Allsup’s stores.

Casey’s General Stores rises to the top for its pizza. “That's always been their bread and butter,” Byrne said, and Casey’s stands above the rest when consumers rate craveable pizza.

QuickChek and Get Go earn the top spot for sandwiches, with Wawa and Sheetz coming in third and fourth.

“They all are doing some fabulous-looking sandwiches,” Byrne said. In particular, he points out a unique offering at QuickChek, the pastrami Reuben on a Portuguese roll. Just adding something different like the Portuguese roll to a familiar sandwich makes it notable, he said. “These are the types of things that we're talking about when we point to craveability.”

As c-store retailers continue to work on growing their foodservice business, he said, the data shows that a winning strategy is to focus on a signature item and make it more delicious and more differentiated from competitors.

Pictured: QuickChek’s Thxgiving Sub.