Here's Pollo Loco's key to success, its CEO says

Not trying to be next Chipotle: LOCO CEO
Not trying to be next Chipotle: LOCO CEO   

El Pollo Loco's recent success can be attributed to its combining the best elements of fast-casual restaurants and traditional fast food joints, its CEO said Tuesday.

"If you look at our brand … we have the quality of food that you'd get at a fast-casual [like] a Panera or a Chipotle, but you also get the speed, convenience and value that you'd get at a Taco Bell or a Chick-fil-A," Steve Sather told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" on Tuesday.

Comparable restaurant sales rose nearly 8 percent during the fourth quarter of 2014, the company reported last month. Its stock has risen more than 32 percent this year, according to FactSet. The company's stock traded nearly 3.4 percent higher at 12:58 p.m. ET.

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Sather added that the growth in the Hispanic population has also contributed to the company's recent success. "About 30 percent of our demographic is Hispanic," he said.

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Nevertheless, El Pollo Loco has also been able to capture the broader U.S. consumer, also said. "The food taste great and it's also very healthy for you. It's flame-grilled, not deep-fried."