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After 30 Years On the Menu, This McDonald's Item May Never Come Back

The staple was cut in April, and the chain is moving on without it.
Mcdonald's golden arch

As only the most loyal McDonald's fans have noticed, there are several menu changes that were made back in April that are still lingering at the fast-food chain. For example, the All Day Breakfast still hasn't reappeared, and odds are, it never will. Why? Because McDonald's has actually seen its efficiency benefit greatly from the simplified menu. 

Another item cut from the menu for the sake of efficiency was the salad. All of McDonald's salad options, which included the Bacon Ranch, the Southwest, and the side salad, left the menu quietly and rather unceremoniously, and no one really seemed to miss them too much. However, with the chain having brought back items like the Bacon McDouble, vanilla ice cream cones, and chocolate chip cookies over the summer, the continued absence of the salad is prompting more questions. Is it ever coming back? (Related: McDonald's Is Making These 8 Major Upgrades.)

Judging by the brand's Tweets at wondering customers, McDonald's doesn't seem to have any imminent plans to bring the salad back. "We hope you find a new favorite soon," is about as telling of an answer as any—salads are likely gone for good, after having spent almost 30 years on McDonald's menus.

Industry insiders have shed some light on why the chain is so happy to keep salads off the menu. Besides simplifying the jobs of their servers, who can fulfill orders faster when there are fewer items to make, the chain will also streamline their ingredient purchases. 

"Instead of needing to purchase two kinds of lettuce, one for salads and one for sandwiches, now McDonald's needs only one," Jonathan Maze, editor in chief of Restaurant Business magazine, explained to The Washington Post.

But just because they're out with the old, doesn't mean McDonald's isn't growing their menu. This year, we've seen the chain put out plenty of new offers, like the Spicy Chicken Nuggets which sold out in record time, the seasonal return of the McRib, and the announcement of a brand new chicken sandwich and plant-based burger for 2021. Ummm, salad who?

Still, if you're feeling nostalgic, indulge in your feels by taking a look at some other beloved McDonald's items that have been discontinued below.

1

Arch Deluxe

mcdonalds arch deluxe burger
@AnthonyKincart/Twitter

If you were feeling fancy in the '90s, you could order an Arch Deluxe instead of a Big Mac. But there wasn't much to differentiate the "deluxe" burger from its cheaper counterpart, and it was removed from the menu.

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2

Beef Tallow Fries

mcdonald's food fries lights
Shutterstock

Once upon a time, McDonald's made its fries with beef tallow. These days, the fries are vegetarian-friendly and are prepared in vegetable oil. But there was something delicious about the beef tallow spuds.

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3

Artisan Grilled Chicken Sandwich

mcdonalds artisan grilled chicken sandwich on white background
Courtesy of McDonald's

If you prefer grilled chicken to crispy chicken at McDonald's, we have some bad news. The Artisan Grilled Chicken Sandwich is another pandemic casualty on the McDonald's menu, though the McChicken is still available.

4

Bagels

mcdonalds bacon egg cheese bagel
Courtesy of McDonald's

If you didn't like the traditional breakfast sandwich offerings like the egg McMuffin, you used to be able to get your sandwich on a bagel instead. Sadly, that's a thing of the past—you'll now have to head to a bagel shop to get your beloved bagel sandwich.

And for more nostalgia, don't miss these 15 Fast-Food Menu Items You Might Never See Again.

5

Fruit and Yogurt Parfait

mcdonalds fruit yogurt parfait
Courtesy of McDonalds

The only two items currently on the McDonald's "fries and sides" menu are fries and apple slices. The fruit and yogurt parfait, which layered strawberries and blueberries with vanilla yogurt, disappeared during the pandemic.

6

Onion Nuggets

mcdonalds onion nuggets
@WeRJustGrubbin/Twitter

McDonald's doesn't serve onion rings, but once upon a time, the Golden Arches served Onion Nuggets. They were a bit like the Texas Tonion from LongHorn Steakhouse, with fried onion chunks that were perfect for dipping.

7

Big N' Tasty

mcdonalds big n tasty
@McDo_PH/Twitter

The Big N' Tasty was added to the McDonald's menu in the late '90s. But like the Arch Deluxe, the burger didn't have enough to differentiate it from the chain's other burger offerings like the Big Mac.

8

Hula Burger

mcdonalds hula burger
@Ink184/Twitter

Cheese and pineapple slices don't usually go together, and pineapple isn't usually served in place of burger meat. But this inventive vegetarian creation was so out-of-the-box that we'd love to see it on McDonald's menus again.

For more, check out these 108 most popular sodas ranked by how toxic they are.

Mura Dominko
Mura Dominko is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!. Read more