Home The Funny Side This Is What The Original McDonald’s Menu Looked Like And It’s Delightfully...

This Is What The Original McDonald’s Menu Looked Like And It’s Delightfully Outrageous


You can’t find a fast food restaurant more American than McDonald’s. Recently, they’ve been offering up some menu options that are crazy AF: McNoodles in Austria and McNürnburger in Germany (I can’t pronounce it, either).

With their menu getting more ridiculous by the minute, it’s gotten us thinking: has it always been this way? The answer is no, not by a long shot.

This is what a McDonald’s menu looked like in the early 1940s.


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Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Chili and baked beans? Barbecued plates? Sounds more like the spread for a Fourth-of-July barbecue at Nana’s, not a Drive-Thru meal you pay someone else to make.

The chain’s humble beginnings started back in 1940, when its founders opened the then-named McDonald’s Bar-B-Q in San Bernardino, California.


Brothers Dick and Mac McDonald probably had no idea their unassuming restaurant was headed for world domination.


After closing down for three months in 1948 to do some alternations to the restaurant, they reopened McDonald’s with a pared-down menu of just nine items: hamburgers, cheeseburgers, and drinks such as coffee, Coca-Cola, and Orangeade, among others.

Thus began the rise of McDonald’s as we know it.

With their staple menu option emblazoned across the signboard on their front entryway, the McDonald’s 15-cent hamburger stole the show.


But other than the revamped menu, the biggest change was about to come in the form of travelling salesman, Ray Kroc. In 1954, Kroc stumbled upon the first McDonald’s while he was touring the country. The 52-year-old decided to help the brothers franchise their business.

With Kroc’s help, McDonald’s went from a humble diner to the nation’s most recognizable fast-food restaurant chain.


One year later, they opened their second store in Illinois, and it was here where the now-iconic Golden Arches first appeared.


The early McDonald’s crew only had to cook three food items, but their simple, down-home burgers carried the chain from obscurity to international stardom.


And that, my friends, is the story of how we met those burgers. Now, let’s go get a Happy Meal.

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