Top 10 McDonald's Products That Failed

6 min read
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Jan 27, 2024
Top 10 McDonald's Products That Failed
McDonald's periodically tested out new menu items in an effort to stay competitive. While some of them are bound to fail before they even get started, others go on to become enormous successes.
10 of the worst McDonald's products that either completely disappeared or faded into oblivion are examined in this list. Please feel free to share in the comments any of your personal worst-ever products.

1. Mc Gratin Croquette

Mc Gratin Croquette
Mc Gratin Croquette
This unique McDonald's burger was a colossal disaster, created for the Japanese market. Why did it not work out? Maybe it was the combination of mashed potatoes, prawns, and deep-fried macaroni. Maybe it was because it was placed atop a bed of cabbage?
Alternatively, it might have been the moniker, which is genuinely unheard of at McDonald's. In some places of Japan, it is still available as a seasonal product in spite of all of its shortcomings.
This one takes home the failure prize for being just plain bad, not for losing money. We have included a video clip of a Japanese advertisement for this monstrosity for your viewing pleasure.

2. Hulaburger

Hulaburger
Hulaburger
The most well-known failure of Ray Krok, the guy who acquired the McDonald's firm and transformed it into the massive franchise we know today, was the Hulaburger.
In 1963, the burger was invented with Roman Catholics in mind, who were not allowed to eat meat on Fridays. It was essentially a cheeseburger with a pineapple slice in place of the meat.
In contrast to the Filet-O-Fish, which was being promoted concurrently by a Cincinnati franchise, the burger was a complete failure.

3. McDLT

McDonald's Lettuce and Tomato, or McDLT, was marketed in a unique way. The top half of the bun, American cheese, pickles, sauces, lettuce, and tomato were prepared separately from the meat and bottom half of the bun.
After that, each was placed into a specially made, two-sided container. Just before eating, the customer was supposed to combine the heated and chilled sides of the sandwich to complete preparation.
The first issue was the awkward packaging, but the real issue is that nobody wants to buy fast food and then assemble it themselves. This horrible product failure is nearly entirely the result of the horrible video above.
In one of the worst advertisements of the 1980s, the well-known Jason Alexander stars. Eventually, this burger made its way back to McDonald's where it was redesigned, rebranded, and assembled specifically for you as the Big N' Tasty.

4. Arch Deluxe

Arch Deluxe
Arch Deluxe
The Arch Deluxe is marketed by McDonald's as a "hamburger for adults" with an elegant, mature palate. Children were seen in Arch Deluxe advertisements making "yucky faces" and wrinkled noses at the new adult burger.
They even featured Ronald playing pool and golf—two "adult" pastimes. And what was the outcome of the Arch Deluxe campaign, which cost over $100 million? "They teed off one of the most expensive campaigns in history, and still we estimate that comparable store sales were down for the quarter," stated a Wall Street analyst.
Soon after, there was a significant reorganization of the management team.

5. McLobster

McLobster
McLobster
As he considered them to be unsanitary, CEO Ray Kroc forbade the firm from selling hot dogs in his 1977 autobiography. Nevertheless, in the late 1990s, hot dogs were added to select restaurants in the Midwest (at the franchisee's discretion) as a summertime menu item.
In the late 1990s, UK stores offered hot dogs under the McChoice (later PoundSaver) menu. Additionally, Oscar Mayer hot dogs were served at least at one American restaurant at one point, and up until 1999, hot dogs were served at the Toronto SkyDome and Metro Zoo McDonald's locations.
Hot dogs were first sold in Tokyo in 2001, and they were brought back in 2009 under the new name "McHot Dog." The McHotdog simply never takes off, despite numerous attempts to bring it back.

6. McPizza

McPizza
McPizza
When McDonald's decided to enter the pizza market in the middle of the 1990s, the resultant pizza was tasteless, much like the rest of McD's menu, and the majority of people who genuinely wanted pizza went to their regular pizza restaurant.
The business and its franchisees were stuck paying for unnecessary enlarged drive-through windows and pricey new ovens. Regular Americans' pizza preferences remained unaffected by even the most aggressive marketing campaigns, and McPizza was eventually dropped and forgotten.
Why did this product not work as intended? In summary, people could find better pizza elsewhere and didn't identify McDonald's with pizza.

7. McPasta

McPasta
McPasta
In September 1991, McDonald's started testing a pasta-based menu in 40 locations throughout Rochester, New York, including lasagna, fettuccine alfredo, and spaghetti with meatballs. The company had previously tested pasta in the South in 1989.
A New Dinner Menu was tried for six to twelve months at two locations in Tennessee and New York at the beginning of the 1990s. Along with the pizza stated earlier, there were other dishes such as roasted chicken, lasagna, spaghetti, and fettuccine alfredo.
Vegetable medley and mashed potatoes with sauce were among the side dishes. Similar to the McPizza, McDonald's spaghetti was simply unappealing to customers.
The company recently experimented with kid-friendly pasta dishes in Australia and New Zealand, and both nations are dropping it (or considering it) from their menus as a result of low customer demand.

8. McAfrica

When the news is dominated by reports of widespread famine in Africa, what could be the worst thing you could do? Launch and promote a McAfrica burger so that you may eat it while you watch the destitute kids on TV go hungry.
The terrible taste timing of the advertising campaign was the product's issue rather than its awful flavor. This is not the first time McDonald's has made this error; the McAfrika, which was served on pita bread and had beef and vegetables, was introduced in Norway in 2002.
Due to the strong negative response, McDonald's placed contribution boxes for hunger relief at every location where the food was sold. We could be in for a McHolocaust in the future with such clever marketing.

9. McLean Deluxe

Men's distaste for this burger was its initial issue (much like Diet Coke which led to Coke Zero). Its flavor presented the next issue. McDonald's claimed in the advertisement above that it was "low fat but tastes great," but this was untrue.
Water was used to replace the lost fat, but carrageenan—or seaweed to you and me—was added to the mixture to keep the water in the meat. It should come as no surprise that the burger was a complete failure due to its terrible taste and little market share.

10. McHotdog

McHotdog
McHotdog
As he considered them to be unsanitary, CEO Ray Kroc forbade the firm from selling hot dogs in his 1977 autobiography. Nevertheless, in the late 1990s, hot dogs were added to select restaurants in the Midwest (at the franchisee's discretion) as a summertime menu item.
In the late 1990s, UK stores offered hot dogs under the McChoice (later PoundSaver) menu. Additionally, Oscar Mayer hot dogs were served at least at one American restaurant at one point, and up until 1999, hot dogs were served at the Toronto SkyDome and Metro Zoo McDonald's locations.
Hot dogs were first sold in Tokyo in 2001, and they were brought back in 2009 under the new name "McHot Dog." The McHotdog simply never takes off, despite numerous attempts to bring it back.