McDonald’s is one of the most recognized brands worldwide. The fast food chain has an extensive menu that will often cater to the local tastes of customers from India to Canada. Some of the items are variations on familiar McDonald’s items while others are a little more exotic. Here’s a list of the most salivating McD’s foodstuff America’s missing out on.
10. You Want Curds With That?
McDonald’s French Fries are about as famous as the burgers they compliment so well and for very good reason. Their golden brown deliciousness is the perfect match for a hot, juicy hamburger. Then there’s Quebec: birthplace of Poutine, a dish of french fries and cheese curds topped with brown gravy. This savory dish was invented sometime in the 1950s and has been a popular food in the province ever since. Outside of Quebec however, many people made fun of this dish and the people who ate it. Regardless of any stigma, this menu item would probably go over well in certain parts of America such as Wisconsin. Parts of the midwest have a love affair with all things cheese. “If it’s not broken don’t fix it” is often good advice and some would argue America’s friend to the North might have heeded this nugget of wisdom. McDonald’s French Fries are pretty much perfect as they are and any attempt to alter them or dress them up feels a lot like meddling. However, “the customer is always right” is another rule that the fast food chain seems to know something about. There are plenty of Americans who eat french fries with brown gravy so at least that part is well established. If McDonald’s determines that there’s a market for Poutine in America then you could see it at a location near you.
9. McMeat Cake
It’s called chocolate salami, but rest assured there is no actual meat in the McDonald’s treat available at locations in Italy. What they call chocolate sausage is actually a McCafe treat that would obviously go great with a nice cup of hot coffee. This menu item is similar to a refrigerator cake that you would make with those chocolate wafer cookies. The cookies are arranged together in a row and doused with whipped cream before being placed the refrigerator to chill. McDonald’s version of this classic treat is made by stirring crushed cookies into melted chocolate and then pouring the concoction into a sausage shaped mold to cool. Some country’s cuisine includes an abundance of wonderful desserts and Italy is definitely one one of them. Spumoni cookies, Biscotti and tiramisu to name a few examples of delicious Italian desserts are craved around the world. It makes sense that Italians would hunger for a tasty dessert when they visit their local McDonald’s. They can enjoy the chocolate salami while sipping coffee, espresso or cappuccino. This chocolate salami sounds like a delicious treat and would be a fine addition to McDonald’s McCafe’s in America. Americans love coffee, chocolate and cookies as much as Italians so what’s the hold up with this one?
8. Vegi Breakfast McSandwich
The Dosa Masala Brioche is a breakfast sandwich that was inspired by classic Indian cuisine. This menu item has been a big hit in Mumbai, the nation’s bustling financial and entertainment capital. The patty at the heart of this sandwich is a vegetarian dish made from turmeric spiced mashed potatoes and peas. The patty is fried and put in a brioche type of bun and topped with a molagapodi chutney mayonnaise. The sandwich also includes mustard seeds, curry leaves, onion and jeera (cumin.) According to some reviews these traditional flavors combine to provide a fairly authentic Indian taste that people can eat anywhere. McDonald’s considers this particular item to be a fusion of Indian and French because of the brioche, but the type of bun used seems very much secondary to the patty. If you like Eastern spices like turmeric, curry and cumin then you’d probably like this breakfast sandwich. In India the Dosa Masala would traditionally be served in a rice crepe. In America breakfast sandwiches like the Egg McMuffin and Sausage Biscuit are popular long established, but there might be room for a Dosa Masala Brioche sandwich on the menu. This item wouldn’t necessarily have to be marketed as a breakfast sandwich in America just because it is in India. The Dosa Masala Brioche would be fine for lunch or dinner with an order of french fries and a soda.
7. McChicken King Style
Chicken Ala King means “king-style chicken.” The origins of this dish is in doubt but it might have been invented in the 1880s by a chef at the famous New York City restaurant, Delmonico’s. Traditional Chicken Ala King consists of diced chicken in cream sauce with sherry mushrooms and vegetables like carrots, corn and green beans. Some recipes also call for pearl onions. Chicken Ala King is served over noodles, bread or rice. McDonald’s has a long and successful history of adapting a wide range of foods to its menu. Over the years the fast food chain has introduced Chicken McNuggets, chicken soft tacos, a grilled chicken sandwich and a crispy chicken sandwich. So McDonald’s had a good track record for chicken menu items when it introduced Chicken Ala King at locations in the Philippines. McCrispy Chicken Fillet Ala King is the McDonald’s version that is offered on the island nation. As the name suggests this recipe for Ala King uses a fried chicken fillet instead of the traditional diced chicken, but there is a delicious looking cream sauce and some vegetables. McDonald’s Ala King is served with white rice. Chicken Ala King has long been a popular comfort food so it’s not surprising that the popular fast food chain would introduce a version of it. Although, it’s a little surprising it hasn’t been tried at McDonald’s in America yet.
6. Purple Pie Eaters
Taro is a plant grown on Pacific islands and popular in Southeast Asia. It is a root vegetable similar to potatoes and yams. Taro is a popular food in China which explains why McDonald’s restaurants in the Middle Kingdom offer a pie with a sweet taro filling. The filling is a striking purple color that might seem strange to people used to enjoying apple and cherry pie fillings. The taro filling has a consistency similar to chunky mashed potatoes which you’d expect because the taro is a starchy root vegetable. The idea of this food being used for a pie filling is not so strange when you think about it though because many Americans enjoy sweet potato pie. The sweet potato pie is a classic dessert and is especially popular in the southern United States during the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons. It’s not clear if this taro pie would be an easy sell in a lot of places in America that are happy with its apple and cherry pies. This exotic flavor was also tested at McDonald’s in the Hawaiian Islands and did pretty well there. As of June 2019 a blogger reported that Taro pies are available at McDonald’s locations in Hawaii. Although the taro pies might sell well on the Hawaiian Islands, it’s not clear a pie with a purple filling made from a kind of potato would catch on in America right away.
5. Green Cake and Beans
This exotic looking dessert, the Matcha Red Bean Layer Cake from McDonald’s like the taro pie offered in China, might not be an easy sell in many places in America. This exotic looking dessert is only available at McDonald’s in Hong Kong, China, but it could possibly do well in big American markets like Los Angeles and New York. If you like Matcha then you’d probably like McDonald’s Matcha Red Bean Layer Cake.For those who aren’t sure if they’d like it Matcha is a kind of finely ground green tea leaves. Green tea ice cream has risen in popularity in America so this would be the next step. This sweet cake is made from layers of crepes or thin pancakes with matcha cream in between the layers. Red beans are mixed throughout the cake that seem to be of dubious flavor value. It is topped off with another layer of matcha cream for frosting and sprinkled with dark green Matcha powder. This is a lot of Matcha, but if you are a Matcha fan then this probably sounds good. A reviewer for firstwink.com sampled the cake and thought the Matcha flavor wasn’t strong enough, but liked the consistency of the pancakes. McDonald’s could market this dessert in America as a healthier treat than its pies. Matcha Red Bean Layer Cake may not appeal to every McDonald’s customer in America because many of us are used to flavors like chocolate, vanilla and peanut butter. Having said that, it’s time Americans have the option of trying this exotic Chinese treat.
Street food in Los Angeles means tacos and in Berlin it’s currywurst or sausages cut into chunks and flavored with a curry spiced sauce. The German people certainly do love their sausage and McDonald’s like to give customers what they want. To this end in 2013 the fast food chain started offering McCurrywurst that was flavored with a spicy curry ketchup. Traditional currywurst is usually made with pork sausage, but the McDonald’s version is made with chicken instead. This German treat was offered to customers as part of a limited time promotion. One traveler to Germany who visited a McDonald’s location posted a blog saying he’d looked for this item, but didn’t see any McCurrywurst on the menu. Even though bratwurst isn’t a household name for many Americans, obviously there are forms of sausage that are popular. Of course the beloved American hot dog (inspired by German sausages) is an obvious example. There is no reason to think McCurrywurst wouldn’t be a hit at McDonald’s in America. This spicy chicken sausage would go well with an order of french fries or perhaps as part of a hearty breakfast with some hot cakes and a hash brown. If McDonald’s really wanted to go all in with an international menu it could pair the McCurrywurst with an order of Poutine. This combination would make for quite a meal that many Americans would certainly embrace.
3. McIsland Breakfast
The Local Deluxe Breakfast Platter on the Hawaiian islands reflects McDonald’s ability to offer menu choices tailored to local appetites. Besides the usual scrambled eggs, sausage or bacon the Hawaii version of this popular breakfast includes rice, Spam and Portuguese sausage. These two meats are very popular on the islands and Spam is considered by some to be a staple of the local diet on Hawaii. Local Hawaiians are also big fans of Aloha brand soy sauce that you can get along with your Deluxe Breakfast Platter. Locals like to put the soy sauce on the eggs and rice for an extra salty treat. The McDonald’s Big Breakfast Platter has been a popular menu item for a long time with its selection of eggs, bacon, sausage, hash browns, an english muffin or biscuit and pancakes. Customers on the mainland might not want to have their pancakes replaced with rice, but it’s likely most fans of the Big Breakfast Platter would be open to trying Spam and Portuguese sausage. Both versions of the breakfast platter offer quite a bit of food, but surprisingly the Big Breakfast Platter is “only” 750 calories. The Local Deluxe Breakfast Platter offered on Hawaii is a little higher in calories, probably because of the Spam and Portuguese sausage, at a more hefty 900 calories. Both of these are hearty breakfasts that should keep you satisfied until you can get lunch.
2. McMac and Cheeseburger
Japan is known for some of its exotic foods with names such as sukiyaki, okonomiyaki, katsudon and of course a lot of Americans eat sushi and sashimi. With these kinds of dishes why would we expect McDonald’s menu in Japan to be any different? The Gracoro Burger is a unique sandwich with a patty made with breaded macaroni, shrimp and a white sauce. The Gracoro is served with cheese and a beef sauce for an unusual mix of flavors. Compared with some of the other international burgers McDonald’s has put out this one looks a little odd. However, just as a book shouldn’t be judged by its cover, a hamburger shouldn’t be judged by the breaded macaroni and beef sauce. There is nothing particularly out of place about any of the ingredients by themselves, but put together the result may seem like a bit much for some people. Macaroni and cheese has long been a popular comfort food in America so this part of the sandwich would likely be embraced by many McDonald’s customers. However, the combination of shrimp and beef sauce could be a bit harder to sell in the USA. Americans would probably prefer a beef patty topped with macaroni and cheese and a slice of cheese on a bun over Japan’s more exotic Gracoro. McDonald’s could call it the McMac & Cheeseburger.
1. Swiss Cheeseburger
The Swiss have been well known for centuries as makers of delicious chocolate. Of course in America there is a popular kind of Swiss Cheese sold at delis across the country. This deli cheese is like the variety of cheese made in Switzerland known as Emmental. This is the yellowish cheese with the familiar holes that cartoon mice seem to enjoy so much. McDonald’s has used this kind of cheese in America before with special menu items like the Mushroom and Swiss Burger. This special burger is popular when it’s released for a limited run. At its locations in Switzerland McDonald’s has taken it up a notch. The McRaclette Burger is a popular choice for Swiss customers because it is built around raclette cheese. This tasty looking burger also features a cheese sauce, pickles and onions on a nice crusty roll. In case you’re wondering what raclette is it is a Swiss dish like fondue. However, unlike in America where the fondue is used as a creamy sauce for dipping things like bread and vegetables. In Switzerland raclette is traditionally served over boiled potatoes with pickles. (Does Ikea serve this dish at any of its stores?) Everything about this Swiss dish sounds delicious and it is well past the time for McDonald’s to introduce it to its American customers. There’s no reason why the McRaclette Burger wouldn’t be an instant hit because Americans love cheeseburgers and it’s really just that simple.