Black bun burgers are an unfortunate trend, with most attempts at the gimmick failing horribly. As many restaurants around the world have discovered, it is very hard to make a burger with a black bun look appealing to the general public. A lot of them decided that adding some ridiculous ingredients would make their black bun sandwiches stand out from the crowd, but for the most part this idea failed horribly. There have been a ridiculous number of attempts at making a black bun burger, but the following are some that you might not have known existed.
10. Kuro Burger
The Kuro Burger from Burger King is the kind of thing that you would only find in Japan, not specifically for its black bun, that’s been done before in many different places, but for what gives the bun its black colour. This limited time burger was released by Burger King in Japan to celebrate the five-year anniversary of the fast food restaurant relaunching in Japan. This burger consisted of the regular toppings found on most hamburgers, lettuce, cheese, pickles, but it also came with the added bonus (if you consider it a bonus) of black ketchup, black cheese and a black bun. You may be wondering what was added to make the bun and ketchup black, and if you guessed an ungodly amount of food colouring, you would be wrong. The bun had added bamboo charcoal to give it its black colour, whereas the ketchup used squid ink, both of those ingredients sounding like something you would probably only find in food from Japan. One would hope that a weirdly black burger would at least taste good, but from reviews found online from when this menu item was available, it was far from tasty. Pictures of the hamburger taken from customers who actually ordered it make the burger look even more unappetizing than just the idea of a black bun already does. A lot of people found the colour of the bun and ketchup just downright offputting, and who can blame them? When people think of a delicious hamburger, they don’t tend to think of black buns and sauces.
9. Ikasumi Burger
This was McDonald’s Japan’s answer to Burger King’s black burger, except they released theirs for a Halloween promotion, and only in limited stores in Tokyo. McDonald’s released this burger with a black bun, squid ink sauce, fried onions and some chipotle sauce on top of two burger patties. The only saving grace in terms of this burger looking more edible than the Burger King version, is the fact that McDonald’s decided to use regular coloured cheese, making it look a little more appetizing than the black cheese used on the Kuro Burger. Reviewers said it was a bit better than the Burger King version, but still wasn’t anything special when it came to taste or presentation. Appearance and presentation are usually considered important things when it comes to food, so the black colour of the burger was off-putting to a lot of people. Burgers with strange coloured buns historically don’t go over well, no matter how many times it’s attempted or what colours are tried, people seem to like their buns to just be the same colour they are supposed to be. It was a good effort from McDonald’s to compete with Burger King, making their black burger just a bit cheaper than their competitor, but even with a lower price these burgers didn’t go over that well, and are at no risk of returning as a regular menu item any time soon.
8. Hakooka Burger
This black burger is a lesser known one for a lot of people, having been released by a fast food place that is only in Kuwait, called Humbah. It’s not a main stream fast food place like McDonald’s or Burger King, but it seemed to be taking some notes and attempting to follow their footsteps when it comes to gimmicky hamburger buns. This small burger place released a black bunned burger inspired by The Dark Knight, or at least that’s what it was advertised as. Whatever the inspiration, clearly this burger place had not heard about how unpopular strange coloured burger buns were, or they probably would have just skipped this gimmick all together. There are few reviews for this burger that can be found online, but the ones that are able to be found are for the most part at least positive. The small number of reviews indicates that there probably weren’t many people who actually went and tried the hamburger, probably put off by the black colour of the buns. It looks like it’s just a regular hamburger for the most part, no strange toppings to be found, aside from the colour of the buns. There’s no indication of what gives this hamburger it’s black colour, so one can only guess what was used, either way it doesn’t look half as off-putting as some of the other black burgers out there, so they at least have that going for them.
7. Dark Vador Burger
This burger was released by a fast food company named Quick, which is a burger company that has over 400 restaurants internationally. The Dark Vador burger was added to the menu in celebration of the re-release of the Star Wars movie “The Phantom Menace”, along with three other themed hamburgers named after characters from the Star Wars franchise. The other burgers all featured normal coloured buns, with varying flavours created by the burger patties and the sauces, but they wanted to make one that stood out more, and so they attempted the age-old black bun trick. This burger was made to be a bit on the spicier side, which alone would have been enough to make the hamburger a unique menu item, but instead Quick decided that they needed to take it one step further and join in on the black hamburger bun gimmick. Reviews stated that this hamburger was actually pretty tasty, putting aside the weird black colour of the buns, so at least they got the taste right, even if the colour wasn’t necessary. This limited time hamburger went over a lot better than most restaurants who attempted the black bun thing, but still didn’t sell as well as it probably would have if they would have just kept the buns the way they are supposed to be.
6. Black (And White) Burgers
McDonald’s has tried to create success from black hamburger buns more than once, and each time it doesn’t go over as well as they probably thought it would. This time around, they decided to not only include a black hamburger bun on their menu, but also a white hamburger bun, both of which looked like a McDonald’s burger that had been left out for far too long. These two hamburgers came as a package deal, but they both included different meats as their main ingredient, the black burger consisted of pork and the white one consisted of chicken. This menu item was released for a limited time by McDonald’s china, and they didn’t review or sell very well. Both hamburgers looked very off-putting in general, but the colour of the buns especially made people avoid ordering this particular item. Both hamburgers featured sesame seeds on top that were coloured the opposite of the buns, making the buns look just that much more disgusting for the consumer. This menu item stayed in China, and even there it didn’t remain on the menu for long, but despite haing yet another black burger not work out in their favour, this wouldn’t be the last time that McDonald’s would attempt to sell a sandwich with a black bun.
5. Black Bun Frog Burger
Another very strange, and very disgusting looking, limited time menu item to come out of Japan, this sandwich is exactly what the title suggests. Not only is the bun black, but in the middle of those daunting black buns, you’ll find a nice set of fried frog legs. As if black buns weren’t enough to turn people away from trying a sandwich, the Orbi Yokohama museum in Japan decided to make their sandwich even less appealing by including frog legs that stuck way out of the bun. Even if you were adventurous enough to try this hamburger, it would be hard to even try to eat, since a lot of the frog legs are sticking out of the bread. Luckily this burger was not only a limited time item, but it was also limited to only being sold at the museum. The menu item was created to promote one of their limited time exhibits, which hopefully the weirdness of the sandwich was enough to draw people in to the exhibit, because it probably wasn’t a very popular menu item for people to actually order. There aren’t really any reviews of it online, but it’s easy to imagine that it probably wasn’t their top selling menu item, the pictures of it just don’t look appealing at all, which is partially the fault of the black bun and partially the fault of the frog legs hanging off the black bun.
4. Kuro Ninja Burger
As if the poor sales of the first Kuro burger weren’t enough, the next year Burger King made yet another black burger, this time even worse than the previous Kuro burger. This one comes with a hash brown as a topping, along with an unnecessarily long piece of floppy bacon that just looks absolutely off-putting. Burger King Japan seemed to think that the low sales numbers of the original burger were due to the plain flavour and lack of original ingredients of the rest of the burger, and not because of the black buns, so they added more and re-released this limited time menu item under a slightly different name. The reviews for this burger were unsurprisingly as bad as the original release of the Kuro burger, the additional toppings that Burger King Japan decided to add didn’t seem to appeal to their customers like they thought it would. Who can blame them? No one wants to eat a burger with a black bun, let alone one that also has a disturbing looking piece of very long bacon on it. Sadly, this would not be the last time that Burger King in Japan would release a Kuro burger, because they seem to love continuing to put out menu items that have failed in the past. We can only hope that one day they will learn from their previous mistakes and stop releasing hamburgers with black buns.
3. Black Bun Burger From Dubai
The black bun burger trend seems to have no limits as to where it will pop up, but not all of them seem to be as terrible as the ones listed above. There is a local burger place in Dubai called Salt, and from online reviews, their simply named black bun burger seems to be a hit with locals and tourists alike. If you have ever dreamed of eating a black bun burger on the beaches in Dubai, Salt is apparently the place to go, with people praising its atmosphere and delicious gourmet hamburgers, which includes reviews of the black bun burger as well. Salt has proven that not every black bun burger needs to be gimmicky and having just a simple and well-made hamburger between those off-coloured buns is enough to sell the item on its own. The black bun burger is actually one of Salt’s most popular selling items, maybe Burger King and McDonald’s should take some notes from Salt for their inevitable future release of yet another black bun hamburger. At least this local Dubai restaurant was able to show that if you actually take the time to make a good hamburger instead of slapping random ingredients on, even a black bun won’t deter people from eating it.
2. First Order Burger
This is yet another black bunned burger that was inspired by Star Wars, this time it was done by Disney themselves to celebrate the opening of a Star Wars themed attraction at one of their parks. A Star Wars themed restaurant was opened, named the Galactic Grill, and on the menu at this new themed restaurant, along with several other gimmicky Star Wars themed items, was a black bunned burger named after one of the groups in the Star Wars movie. Apparently Disney couldn’t think of a better way to represent the First Order than to create a black bun hamburger with a couple of spicy items as toppings, not a very innovative idea, many other companies have done this exact same thing. This particular hamburger with a black bun looked a lot more appetizing in real life than most of the other attempts other companies have taken, which is at least one thing they had up on most of their competition. The burger had a slight spicy theme to it, offering fried peppers and a spicy lime sauce on it, along with the black bun that so many others have attempted to sell before. Disney seemed to at least halfway be on the right track with the black bun burger, theirs wasn’t as unnecessary as some other who have tried to create a black bun sensation. The burger didn’t get any rave reviews, but it also didn’t flop like some of its competitors in the black burger making game. It was a pretty average burger all in all, so it wasn’t a terrible decision on Disney’s side of things, but it definitely wasn’t a huge hit either.
1. Black Bun Crab Burger
The last burger on this list isn’t actually a hamburger in the traditional sense, this one was offered from a local restaurant in Russia named Wave Burgers and More, and instead of the traditional beef patty, this one was made from crab. That wasn’t the only different aspect of this hamburger, the black buns on this sandwich made it stand out from other menu items, and surprisingly in this case it was actually a good thing that it stood out by using a black bun. Aside from the crab patty and the black bun, this sandwich seems to be pretty average, with regular toppings such as lettuce and tomato found between the dark buns. Reviews found online state that this sandwich was a favourite menu item of quite a few customers, and for a good reason, it was made with fresh ingredients and it was made simply instead of trying to use complicated ingredients to draw people in. Quite a few people left reviews saying that this sandwich was one of the best they had ever eaten, and from the pictures they took of the food it actually looks appetizing despite the odd colour of the buns. It looks freshly made and quality, unlike the customer pictures of its fast food counterparts, showing that the black bun on sandwiches doesn’t always have to look off-putting. Sadly, the restaurant is no longer in operation, so if you had plans to go and give it a try yourself, you will be pretty disappointed.