OPINION: The best McDonald’s items, ranked

On February 14, 2016, I walked into a McDonald’s in Woodbury, Minnesota and applied for a position as a crew member. It was Valentine’s Day; love was in the air, along with the distinct smell of french fry grease. I was 14 years old and my parents had told me that it was time to get a job. I decided to apply to the closest place to my house, since my only means of transportation was walking. 

I continued to work at that suburban McDonald’s all throughout high school and part of college, before transferring to a Mankato location last year. I’ve made enough cheeseburgers to circle the Earth twice. I’ve mixed McFlurries by hand due to a broken ice cream machine with such vigor that my carpal tunnel has increased from tunnel to full on Underground Railroad. 

I’ve become well acquainted with the ins and outs of the corporate McBeast that is McDonald’s, and have seen up close and personal how most of the menu is put together in the kitchen. Similarly to last week’s column, thus commences my completely unbiased, completely factually based list of the best foods to order at McDonald’s.

(If you are Ronald McDonald, Grimace, the Hamburglar, or some high-up McDonald’s CEO, kindly do not read this article, as I will more than likely expose behind-the-scenes secrets that go on in the kitchen. I’d recommend reading the Associated Press article to my right, it’ll be much better for you!)

The chicken nuggets take number one spot, with absolutely no competition. At all. The other food items are battling for second place, really. Kind of embarrassing for the other foods, really.

Coming in second place, blowing everyone out of the water, is the Bacon McDouble. The elusive sandwich has sent many a customer into a tizzy with its name. Despite the innocent McMmoniker preceding it, a McDouble and a Double Cheeseburger are two completely separate entities. Both sandwiches have two frozen, never fresh patties, but a Double Cheeseburger has two slices of cheese, not one. 

The Bacon McDouble comes with two sauces served in perfect quantities. A dollop of mustard so small you can barely taste it, and a hearty serving of ketchup, sizable enough to drown out the mustard so you can barely taste it. The Joey Erickson household (consisting of me and only me) is a mustard-free one, but I’m not going to ask for no mustard on my burger. That’s embarrassing.

The bacon in the kitchen is usually so old that scientists can carbon date it to explore how dinosaurs lived in the Mesozoic Period, and so dry that simply looking at it with the intention of touching it will cause the entire piece to crumble a way in the wind, like a Thanos blip from Avengers: Endgame.  Despite that, it goes deliciously on a McDonald’s burger.

Paired together, the chicken nuggets and Bacon McDouble offer a meal worthy of five stars in any Michelin guide. Those stars may be the gold stickers you can buy in bulk at Office Max for $1.99, and smell like kindergarten glue, but they’re stars nonetheless.

Write to Joey Erickson at joseph.erickson.2@mnsu.edu

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