Been & Going

[Kicking Back with Jersey Joe] McDonald’s Triple Cheeseburger Trap

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Jersey Joe exposes how McDonald’s is ripping you off with their Triple Cheeseburger promotion and shows you how to get more food for the same price.

THE 411

Name: McDonald’s Triple Cheeseburger

What: 3 patty hamburger sold at the fast food restaurant chain in the United States

Cost: $2.50 (current advertised special)


Keep a lookout for sneaky menu prices like this.  Many restaurants do this to add your money to their bottom line.  But, by being a smart shopper and doing a little research can help you find a better deal!


[Kicking Back with Jersey Joe] Burger King Halloween Whopper Taste Test

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In this SPECIAL EDITION, Jersey Joe taste tests Burger King’s new Halloween Whopper sandwich.  The first ever fast food sandwich with an all black bun in the US.

Specialty hamburgers with black buns have been featured as promotional items at fast food restaurants overseas for years.  The first, a Star Wars Darth Vador burger was sold by Quick restaurants in France in 2012.  Burger King immediately followed the same year in Japan, with a Premium Kuro Burger (which means Black Burger in English.)

However, the Burger King Halloween Whopper marks the first time a black burger has appeared in the United States.  Taco Bell did sell a blackjack, black colored taco shell, back in 2009.

THE 411

Name: Halloween Whopper

Restaurant: Burger King

Price: $4.99 sandwich only (value meals start at $7.99)




It’s a fun, novelty item for Halloween.  Give it a try.  I also like the addition of the A-1 sauce, instead of ketchup on a traditional Whopper.  A word or warning… the internet rumors are true.  Not to be gross, but it does turn an interesting color coming out the other end!  You’ll see!

[Kicking Back with Jersey Joe] In Search of the Arby’s Meat Mountain Secret Menu Sandwich

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It’s the sandwich lighting up social media – Jersey Joe checks out if all the  hype about the new Arby’s secret menu item – The Meat Mountain is the real deal.



THE 411

What: The Meat Mountain

Where: Arby’s restaurants coast to coast

Time: Limited time offering

Cost: $10 plus tax per sandwich

arbys meat mountain


This is a great idea on Arby’s part.  It all started off, when they posted a picture showing all of the meats they currently have for sale on a bun.  Customers started to ask for the sandwich and someone at the corporate office was listening.  Now, it’s become a win-win!

Arby’s gets all the free social media and web advertising and customers get to try a truly unique sandwich.  This will only on sale for a limited time, but this one will definitely be talked about for years to come.  Skip the diet – and give this at least a try!

[Kicking Back with Jersey Joe] A Chicken Big Mac?

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Just about all of us have had a meal at McDonald’s at one point in our lives.  Everyone is equally familiar with their signature Big Mac sandwich.  Those two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onion, on a sesame seed bun.  The sandwich has gone unchanged for half a century, but now thanks to competition – another restaurant is trying to “one up” the Golden Arches, by replacing those beef patties – with chicken!


The McDonald's Big Mac

The McDonald’s Big Mac

The Big Mac was developed by a Pennsylvania McDonald’s franchisee in the 1950’s.  The special or secret sauce that makes up the sandwich is rarely used by McDonald’s on any other products.


In fact, it has happened only twice.


McDonald’s once sold a Mac Jr., which was a single cheeseburger, topped with the Mac sauce, lettuce, and pickles.  For a brief time in 2011, a Mac Snack wrap was also sold which featured half of a hamburger patty, the secret sauce, cheese, lettuce, pickles, and onion wrapped up in a flour tortilla.


This year, McDonald’s has expanded their Quarter Pounder sandwich line by offering a new Bacon Clubhouse burger which features a quarter pound beef patty, cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, red onion, and the Big Mac secret sauce on a special Kaiser roll.  This is the first time the sauce has ever been used on different burger.  McDonalds also has a chicken option, where you can get chicken instead of beef, but with the secret sauce the taste, just isn’t very good.


The Big Mac is sold at most worldwide McDonald’s locations, but there are several variations, including versions that replace the beef with a chicken patty and more.  (read more about the international versions here).  But, none of these have ever been sold in the United States.


McDonald’s has been facing some stiff competition lately in a fast food burger war, by their greatest opponent – Burger King.


The Burger King Whopper sandwich.

The Burger King Whopper sandwich.

Burger King has its own signature sandwich, The Whopper.  But, they’ve fired a torpedo at the Golden Arches by creating their Big Mac knockoff – the Big King.


The Big King was first introduced back in the 1990’s, but was reformulated and only sold for a limited time.  However, it made a big return last year worldwide and is now once again assembled identically to a Big Mac.


For my money, the Big King just tastes better.  I like the flavor or BK’s flame broiled patties and I think their sauce is just a hint more subtle.  I think you can swap Big Mac sauce for regular tartar sauce and not know the difference.  BK’s sauce is more similar to Thousand Island salad dressing. (which, maybe it is?)


The Chicken Big King.

The Chicken Big King.

Burger King is going for round 2 in the burger war, by adding a chicken version to their menu.  Introduced a couple weeks ago, America can now feast on the Chicken Big King.


I decided to finally give one a try and Burger King is making it easy by offering two for $5 as a special, which really is a deal.  The sandwich uses two of the basic lightly spiced chicken patty BK uses on their value chicken sandwiches.


Once again though, I don’t think the special sauce works with chicken.  It tastes like a fish sandwich with tarter sauce.


That was the same issue I had with the chicken version of McDonald’s Chicken Clubhouse sandwich (which they gave me by mistake the time I ordered, but I tried it anyway.)  The special sauce just doesn’t work for chicken.  The taste reminds me of the Filet-O-Fish.


But, for a limited time BK is selling these on their 2 for $5 promotional menu.  These items rotate on a regular basis, so if you are interested in trying one, I wouldn’t wait around that long.  The sandwich is sold for a limited time only.


But, thanks to the fast food war, Americans can now experience what diners in other countries have for years and that’s the chicken version of the Big Mac or Big King.


The Chicken Big King contains 660 calories and 37g fat.


THE 411


Name: Chicken Big King


What: chicken version of McDonald’s Big Mac or Burger Kings Big King sandwiches


Where served: Burger King restaurants worldwide


Introduced: 2014


Availability: Limited Time Only




While I again applaud Burger King for trying and testing a new sandwich, I say skip this one.  You’re better off just going for the regular Big King.


Image credits – Don, Chandra Marsono

[Kicking Back with Jersey Joe] The McGangbang & Other McDonald’s Secret Menu Items

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Ordering an item off a restaurant’s secret menu, can give you the feeling that you’re part of a club, where only special people have the privileged information.  Many restaurants have secret menus, or items that you can order, that aren’t officially on the menu.   Fast food restaurants are no exception, with everyone from Burger King to In and Out Burger getting in on the secret menu act.


Some restaurants are more open about their secret items than others.  Dozens of websites and news stories are devoted to finding the newest secret item.  While some have been created by the restaurant specifically, others have been created by fans, and have become lore.  I recently sampled two of McDonald’s secret menu items: The McGangBang and The Land, Sea, and Air Burger.


The McGangBang




The McGangBang may be McDonald’s most famous secret menu item and likely, because of the price.  Both items needed to make the sandwich come off the dollar menu, giving you a full meal for only a couple of bucks.


Simply put, the McGangBang is a McChicken sandwich, shoved in between the patties of a McDouble.  Each costs $1 on the dollar menu, so for a cheap $2 plus tax, you have this belly busting sandwich!


The name is a nod to the adult term, “gang bang” which means to have intercourse with multiple partners at one time.  So, I guess your taste buds are getting multiple flavors at one time?  Obviously, this is not officially sanctioned by the McDonald’s corporation.


When I tried ordering this at my local New Jersey McDonald’s, the woman had no idea what I was talking about.  Sadly, she spoke little English, so even ordering regular items became a challenge.  Armed with my knowledge of the sandwich, I ordered the McChicken and a McDouble and assembled them, myself.


The taste was pretty good and the sandwich is definitely filling!  The chicken and the beef patties go well together.  The mayo from the McChicken worked well with the ketchup, pickle, and onions of the McDouble.  Each time I chewed, I got a little flavor of chicken and then a little flavor of beef.  The sandwich was a little heavy with all the multiple patties of meat.


Maybe a more “in the know” cashier will know about this sandwich, but my first secret menu ordering attempt was a bust.  Some online reports list this as being first served by employees at a Daytona Beach, Florida McDonald’s.  (Again, probably without the consent of the McDonald’s corporation.)



According to recipes online, you can replace the McDouble with a Big Mac, but I’m not sure how that would work with the secret sauce.  You can also spice this up, by replacing the McChicken with a Spicy McChicken.  I’d definitely try this again, but keep to the original McDouble recipe.


Apparently, there is another version known as a McWhitey, which features a Filet-O-Fish sandwiched in between two McChickens.


The Land, Sea, and Air Burger

The Land, Sea, and Air Burger



This giant sandwich looks really nice once assembled!  The land, sea, and air burger consists of a patty of beef (land), fish (sea), and chicken (air) all placed together.  Yes, I know chickens can’t really fly… I’m not responsible for naming this thing!  Would you rather call it the Land, Sea, and Embryo Hatcher Burger?


To enjoy this monstrosity, you will have to pony up several bucks.  Only the Hamburger and McChicken are on the dollar menu, so you will need to pay the full price for the Filet-O-Fish to finish this giant sandwich.


This time, I tried ordering at a New York City McDonald’s and again, she had no idea what I was talking about.  So, I ordered the three sandwiches separately and assembled everything myself.


The taste was really gross.  The tarter sauce from the Filet-O-Fish drowned out all other flavors and the fish was really nasty with the hamburger and chicken.  While it looked impressive when plated, the taste prevented me from finishing this one.


I couldn’t find who first came up with the idea for this sandwich, but it is not as much of a cost saver as the McGangBang.  Do yourself a favor and pass on this one.


The internet is full of McDonald’s secret menu items, but it looks like only fans or bored employees are responsible.  None of these are sanctioned by the restaurant.


A few other popular so called McDonald’s secret menu items are:


Big McChicken – a Big Mac, but with the buns replaced with McChicken patties, similar to the KFC Double Down sandwich a few years ago

Chicken McGriddle – a McGriddle breakfast sandwich with a slab of fried chicken instead of the sausage, egg, or bacon

Grilled Cheese – cheeseburger with no meat patty or condiments

Mc1035 – only available from 10:35-11am, when breakfast service is switching over to lunch, featuring two burger patties and cheese (from a McDouble) sandwiched inside an Egg McMuffin

McCrepe – an order of hotcakes, with a yogurt parfait folded up inside

McKinley Mac – this was actually served at one time and still is overseas, featuring Quarter Pounder patties, instead of regular burger patties, on a Big Mac

Monster Mac – 8 burger patties piled inside a Big Mac, variations have appeared on overseas menus

Pie McFlurry – a McFlurry with an apple pie blended inside


While some of these may sound crazy, McDonald’s has an interesting assortment of sandwiches, which ARE being served by their restaurants overseas.  While there are hundreds of sandwiches we never see here, here’s a list of a few more novel ones being offered in foreign markets:


The Ebi Filet-O in Japan

The Ebi Filet-O in Japan

German Sausage Chicken – served in Japan, fried chicken patty, pork sausage, sauerkraut, cheese, and mustard

Mega Sausage – served for breakfast in Japan, a hot dog with relish and ketchup or mustard

McPork – served in Japan, a sausage patty with lettuce and sweet & sour sauce

Ebi Filet-O – served in Japan, a shrimp patty with Thousand Island dressing and lettuce

Mega Tomago – served in Japan, a double Big Mac with egg and bacon

Ad for the Mega Tomago

Ad for the Mega Tomago

McD Chicken Porridge – served in Malaysia, porridge with onions and chicken

Prosperity Burger – served in Malaysia, looks like a McRib, but with black pepper sauce and onions, may be chicken or beef

McSpaghetti – served in the Philippines

Seaweed Shaker Fries – served in Asia

Chicken Maharaja Mac – served in India, a Big Mac with spicy grilled chicken, instead of beef

McAloo Tiki Burger – potato and chickpea patty with tomato, onions, and tomato mayonnaise

Brie Nuggets – served in Russia

McTurco – served in Turkey, two beef patties, lettuce, tomato, cayenne pepper sauce on a pita

The McLobster

The McLobster

Kiwi Burger – served in New Zealand, with beef, tomato, fried egg, lettuce, and beet root

McLobster – served in Canada & parts of US, lobster salad on a roll

Lakeswrap – served in Norway, fried salmon filet, lettuce, cheese, in a tortilla

McKroket – served in Hungary, fried pastry filled with beef stew on a bun

• McPumpkin Omlet Sandwich – served in Hungary, vegetable beef hash brown, egg, cheese, lettuce, mayonnaise, on pumpkin seed roll


McDonald’s first opened in 1940 in San Bernardino, California and along with the rise of the automobile, helped fuel the fast food craze that swept through the United States and now globally.  Their menu of quick service burgers and fries, along with their mascot Ronald McDonald, has become an American icon.


While McDonald’s does not have an official company sanctioned secret menu, many other fast food chains do.  Pass along the info if you know of or have tried any!


McDonald's restaurant in Miles City, Montana

McDonald’s restaurant in Miles City, Montana

THE 411


Name: McGangBang and Land, Sea, and Air Burger


What: so called McDonald’s restaurant secret menu items


First served: approximately 2006?  Popularity spread with rise of internet





Don’t be surprised if you get shot down when you ask for one of these at your local McDonald’s.  I don’t want to discourage you from giving it a try.  But, if they have no idea what you are talking about, just do what I did, and order the parts to assemble the sandwiches yourself.


Just stay away from the Land, Sea, and Air burger… this thing is just gross!


Image credits – loop_oh, albedo20, Tony Chung, Canadian Pacific, and Dave Schott