Fast-food chains have been discontinuing beloved menu options since the beginning of time, but since the beginning of the pandemic, favorites are getting cut left, right, and center. If you wanna know what’s getting cut, you’re in the right place! Here are the 15 Saddest Recently Discontinued Fast Food Menu Items.
15. McDonald’s McGriddles
Shockingly, nearly a hundred items have been removed from McDonald’s menu since the pandemic started. One of these unfortunate cuts is the cherished McGriddle. The fan-favorite featured the maple sweet griddle cakes, thick-cut Applewood bacon, a fluffy golden egg, and a slice of good ol’ fashioned American cheese. While this departure has been very disappointing for our stomachs, it’s been doing a good job helping alleviate the wait time at drive-thrus – it dropped by 25 seconds! – as well as making the entire operation more efficient while keeping the quality of their products. So while we’re sad to not be able to have McGriddles for breakfast, lunch, and dinner anymore, maybe it’s for the best.
14. Popeyes Mac and Cheese
Founded in 1972, Popeyes is a beloved American fast-food restaurant that specializes in fried chicken. Because they’re in the fried chicken business and not the mac and cheese business, it makes sense that they would prioritize their chicken. But still, Popeyes mac and cheese brought joy to the masses! While the website no longer lists mac and cheese as one of their menu items, people from all over the country have come to different conclusions as to whether or not this item has actually been removed. It looks like some locations are still selling their famous mac and cheese, and others aren’t. If you’ve got your heart set on some of Popeyes Mac and Cheese, be sure to call ahead to make sure they’re still serving it! If not, there are plenty of recipes online that you can try your hand at. Who knows, maybe you’ll end up finding a recipe that speaks to you.
13. Subway Roast Beef
Subway is streamlining its menu, and fans are shocked that the sandwich chain decided to ax this popular item instead of letting some less desirable options fall by the wayside – like perhaps the slimy turkey? The Roast Beef has been cherished by customers for so long; it’s hard to say goodbye. Subway isn’t the only chain to limit the size of the menu to make the lives of employees and customers easier, but we have to wonder, why are they getting rid of some of their most popular items? The brand hasn’t spoken up about this, despite many angry fans Tweeting at them, so there may never be a definite answer. However, there is speculation that they’re replacing these scrumptious sandwiches with some new menu items. In response to one fan’s tweet, they said to stay tuned because some new and exciting menu items were on their way! We’ll have to see if their new items live up to their Roast Beef sandwich.
12. McDonald’s Artisan Grilled Chicken Sandwich
If McDonald’s is downsizing its menu based on how popular an item is, it makes sense that their Artisan Grilled Chicken Sandwich didn’t make the cut. You’ve probably never even heard of it. While it is tasty, it’s not nearly as popular as the company’s McChicken – which also happens to be easier to make. while some changes to the McDonald’s menu have hurt us deep in our souls, this one honestly just kind of makes sense. You can still get a crispy chicken sandwich at McDonald’s, so there’s no need for a complicated, fancy-schmancy Artisan Chicken in our current situation.
11. Taco Bell Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Taco
In August, a frightening rumor hit the Internet that Taco Bell was going to cut some of the most beloved items from their menu. Sadly, these rumors turned out to be true. In an effort to simplify and streamline operations in its restaurants, Taco Bell nixed more than a dozen menu items! This menu revamp went into effect on August 13. Some of these cuts were tragic, but one of the worst losses was the Taco Bell Cool Ranch Doritos Loco Taco. How are we supposed to experience happiness without the feeling of this taco sitting in our stomachs? On top of that, the Taco Bell spokesman announced that they would be completely removing the potatoes that were used in some meals, a blow to vegetarians and potato-lovers. There are many petitions online to bring back some of these popular snacks, so if you’re heartbroken over these changes, take comfort in the knowledge that many passionate fans are working hard to get these items back on the menu.
10. KFC Potato Wedges
Kentucky Fried Chicken has been around since the 1930s, and it doesn’t seem like it’s going anywhere anytime soon. As of December 2019, it ranked as the world’s second-largest restaurant chain, the first one being McDonald’s. There are over 22,000 restaurants in nearly 150 countries, so you can imagine how many fans it has across the globe. When KFC started testing out regular fries in some of its various locations, there were rumblings in the food world. Then, in June, it was finally announced: KFC’s Potato Wedges were being replaced by standard fries. Fans everywhere are devasted, though the brand seems optimistic. In one of their tweets, they claimed that the response to the fries had been overwhelmingly positive. Yeah, we’ll have to see it to believe it. As for all those wedge-lovers out there, we’re deeply sorry for your loss.
9. McDonald’s All-Day Breakfast
It was a huge deal when McDonald’s started serving its iconic breakfasts after 10:30 a.m. Waking up at noon and grabbing yourself some steaming hot Mcdonald’s Hotcakes was probably one of the most satisfying feelings in the world. Sadly, it looks like we might not be getting that again for a while. Recently, the National Owners Association – a group of about 80% of franchise locations – voted against bringing back McDonald’s all-day breakfast. This means no Hotcakes for lunch or Sausage McMuffin for dinner. The NOA said that their operations were keeping with a small menu because it’s beneficial for customer satisfaction. Meaning it’s easier to get food out faster without doing all day breakfast, and fast food is McDonald’s top priority. The limited menu and ease of operations allow the McDonald’s teams to focus on providing their signature fast service, and to them, that’s priceless. While there is no sign of all-day breakfast coming back anytime soon, we can still hope that one day, we might be able to have Hotcakes for lunch once more.
8. Shake Shack – Shack-Cago Dog
At the very beginning of the pandemic, Shake Shack announced that they would be serving customers on a strict ‘to-go’ model. That means that no one can stay and eat in the restaurant. They either have to order it online or get their food ‘to-go’. In order to keep things nice and simple, Shake Shack has also made their menu smaller. Unfortunately, this means that the Shack-cago Dog will no longer be served to hungry customers. The Shack-cago dog was a split-top hot dog overloaded with toppings: pickles, tomatoes, onions, and a slew of other stuff. If this was the thing that kept you going during your hardest days, you’re out of luck, because we have no idea when these will be returning to the menu – if ever.
7. Taco Bell Apple Empanada
Taco Bell originated in Irvine, California in 1962, and it’s grown a lot over the past sixty years. It was started by Glen Bell, and was originally a hot-dog stand called Bell’s Drive-In. Nowadays, things look completely different. To accommodate our current situation, they’ve followed the trend of chopping down beloved menu items from left to right. Taco Bell’s Apple Empanadas were on a different level when compared to the rest of their desserts, and now, much like many of the things we used to love, it’s gone, fallen from our grasp. The Apple Empanadas were actually removed even before the pandemic started, but who would say no to an Apple Empanada in this situation? The answer is no one.
6. McDonald’s Fruit and Yogurt Parfaits
While McDonald’s Fruit and Yogurt Parfaits weren’t exactly the healthiest options by a long shot, they still made our tastebuds jump with glee. This fast-food chain transitioned to their slimmed-down menu in April in order to fill drive-thru orders quickly, as well as provide better service, even when their kitchens were short-staffed. The brand cut items that were more complex to make or didn’t sell as well, and that included their Fruit and Yogurt Parfaits. It seems as though the Fruit and Yogurt Parfaits weren’t popular enough to remain on the menu and in our lives. Unfortunately, these sweet treats are going to be kept away from us for a little while longer, at least until the pandemic is over. Let’s hope it makes a comeback.
5. iHOP Menu Changes
Due to the pandemic, iHOP has also started cutting down their offerings by releasing their smallest menu ever. The menu size changed both literally and figuratively. The beautiful, laminated 12-paged menu is now a disposable paper menu that rounds up to 2 pages. Predictably, the franchise has significantly reduced the number of menu items as well. In an attempt to simplify their operations, the company’s chief marketing officer, said the menu was trimmed across the board in all categories. Items that were difficult to prepare and rarely ordered were among the first ones to be retired. He said that they held onto the popular items that weren’t difficult to prepare, emphasizing that customer favorites like omelets, burgers, and pancakes, are definitely still on the menu in some form. Some of the items that were not as lucky include the Chicken Florentine Crepes, Banana Nutella Crepes, Pancake Sliders, and the Simple and Fit Omelet, and fans are already mourning these losses on Twitter.
4. Shake Shack Concretes
Owning over 250 stores globally, Shake Shack was founded in New York City. In 2001, Shake Shack was a hot dog cart in Madison Square Park, but it’s popularity steadily grew. By 2004, it was an established food stand within the park, expanding its menu to encompass not only hot dogs, but burgers, fries, and their famous milkshakes. Since its founding, it’s been one of the fastest-growing food chains, but like every other restaurant, the pandemic hit it hard. Even though it’s still keeping many of its popular items, you can say good-bye to Shake Shack’s Concretes: a dense frozen yogurt blended at high-speed with goodies mixed in. On top of that, as of December 2020, customers can no longer enjoy their meals at the Shack. You can order your food off of a popular delivery app, or get your food to-go. Looks like we’ll be enjoying our Shake Shack at home. No more endless lines, so that’s a plus, at least.
3. McDonald’s Bagels
We’re really sorry to break the news like this. When McDonald’s announced which menu items would stay and which would go, no one expected McDonald’s Bagels to be tossed to the side. And yet, here we are, in a bagel-less domain, mourning the possibility of what could have been. We know that these cuts are to simplify operations and support social distancing among staff members, but still, why bagels? Not only have these been cut, but this globally famous fast-food chain has also removed numerous other popular breakfast items – as well as canceling their all-day breakfast. It almost feels like they want to remove breakfast altogether. Luckily, customers can still access classic staples like egg McMuffins, Big Macs, fries, wraps, and chicken McNuggets, as those haven’t been removed… yet. Still, we mourn the loss of our beloved bagels, the perfect way to start the day – but sadly no longer with us.
2. Subway Rotisserie Chicken
What fans once called the best of the Subway menu is now a thing of the past. You heard it here first: Subway is no longer offering their famous Rotisserie Chicken Sandwich! The popular fast-food chain has taken this delicious sandwich off of their online menu. However, all hope might not be lost, as it seems like some locations may still by carrying this sandwich. This change shocked both customers and employees and both are taking or Twitter to voice their discontent. One fan asked why they would remove one of their top sellers from the menu, but Subway has yet to respond. One can only assume it had to do with cost. Presumably, whole meat rotisserie chicken is more expensive to source than their other chicken offerings, like their chicken strips. Even though some locations seem to be still offering this sandwich, it looks as though supplies are draining fast. Who knows if we’ll ever be able to take a bite out of a Rotisserie Chicken Sub ever again.
1. McDonald’s Salads
Because of the new guidelines implemented by the CDC, many fast-food restaurants are looking for ways to save money. The obvious lack of customers, as well as the need to supply staff with gloves and masks, means that McDonald’s needed to find a way to make up for lost profits, and fast. So, they decided to cut McDonald’s Salads. You heard it right: you’ll no longer be able to get a Southwest Grilled Chicken Salad or a Side Salad. The reason the company made such a drastic cut to their menu is that they use different types of lettuce in their salads than they use to garnish their burgers and sandwiches. By cutting the salads, the restaurant only needs to purchase one type of lettuce, instead of two. On top of that, McDonald’s says that their customers are relying on them to serve food quickly, conveniently, and safely. Cutting the salads helped them keep things simple so they could focus on their customer’s needs. In other words, if you’re looking for a healthier option, you won’t find it at McD’s.