The fast-food industry has us duped – it’s the hard truth. From serving soggy, day-old fries to overcharging on so-called signature entrees, their convenience is our demise. But not anymore; it’s time we take a stand, demanding exactly what we want from our favorite menus. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the pure bliss of beating the system with these 14 fast food hacks to make your meal even better.
1. Customize your fast food burger.
A lot of fast food joints make a pile o’ burgers and put them under heat lamps so they stay hot. That’s why fast food is so fast. But if you don’t want a burger that’s been sitting around for a half hour, aging by the minute, simply customize your burger order so they have to make it fresh.
2. Get your Jamba Juice made-to-order.
Don’t pass up a smoothie with banana in it just because you hate bananas. At Jamba Juice, you can ask to substitute an ingredient for something else or request to have more or less of an ingredient in your favorite smoothie.
3. Save at Jack In The Box.
You can get a double bacon cheeseburger at Jack In The Box for around four bucks, but if you order two of the Jr. Bacon Cheeseburgers off the dollar menu, you can take off one of the buns and stick ‘em together. You get your double for two bucks less, and there’s an extra half-bun to feed to the birds.
4. Order two Junior Roast Beefs at Arby’s.
As Arby’s puts it: “Happiness does come in value sizes,” especially when those value sizes save you money and get you more food. If you go for two Junior Roast Beef sandwiches over a regular sandwich, you get more bang for your buck.
5. Try the Poor Man’s Big Mac.
Save yourself a couple of bucks—$2.60, to be exact—by ordering a McDouble off the dollar menu. Ask them to hold the ketchup and mustard and add Big Mac sauce and a piece of lettuce. Voila! A poor man’s Big Mac!
6. Get a Venti water at Starbucks.
There is something about Starbucks water, isn’t there? It tastes cleaner, crisper, and so much cheaper when you order it in the largest cup size over purchasing a fancy foreign bottle of water.
7. Ask to wait for the fresh fries.
No one likes to get the sad, soggy fries that have been sitting around getting limp under the hot lights. Ask for fresh fries, and you’ll get crisp, piping hot fries every time. You may have to wait a little longer for your food, but it’ll be so worth it.
8. Get a grilled cheese almost anywhere.
If it’s a grilled cheese you have a hankering for, almost any fast food joint that uses buns will be happy to make you one. All they do is put cheese between a bun turned inside out, and grill it to perfection.
9. Get the best poutine ever at KFC.
Poutine is a beloved Canadian dish of hot, crisp French fries slathered in brown gravy and cheese curds, and it’s gooood. Head to any KFC, and ask for French fries topped with cheese and gravy. Some KFC locations actually carry cheese curds just to make a more authentic, less-hacked poutine. Never hurts to ask.
10. Order the 10:35 at McDonald’s.
You arrive at McDonald’s just a hair past breakfast time, and lo, you’re too late for your usual McGriddle. But you may be able to order something even better: The famed and elusive 10:35. Get yourself a McDouble and that last, lonely Egg McMuffin. Remove the top bun off the McDouble, place the egg and the Canadian bacon on top of the patties, and replace the bun. No, you didn’t die and go to heaven. You just experienced one of the tastiest fast food hacks on the planet.
11. Order the Wet Fries at Arby’s.
If you order Wet Fries at Arby’s, you’ll get a pile of their delicious curly fries smothered in hot ’n’ gooey liquid cheese. If you want to spice it up a bit, ask for some jalapenos on top. You can also order a Classic Roast Beef, remove half the beef without compromising the integrity of the sandwich, chop it up, and sprinkle it over your Wet Fries for a more robust treat.
12. Make a Healthy, Easy Chicken Salad.
Lay down a bunch of lettuce in a big bowl. Add some veggies: Cucumbers, tomatoes, fresh green beans. Lay a couple of Cane’s chicken fingers on top, and you’ve got yourself a fresh and healthy, quick and easy chicken salad without having to turn on the stove.
13. Order both chicken and steak at Chipotle.
14. Ask for a round egg at McDonald’s.
If you’re not a big fan of McDonald’s square yellow egg patty, you can swap it out for a real egg made on the griddle with a ring. All you have to do is ask for a “round egg,” and you’ll get it at no extra charge.
You didn’t think that was all we’ve got, did you? You needn’t be a slave to the fast food menu when you can hack the heck out of it. For even more tips on how to get the most out of your fast food meal, check out these 23 Simple Fast Food Hacks That Will Change Your Life.