McDonald's Latest Menu Idea Is to Make the Big Mac Bigger (and Smaller)

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McDonald's will roll out the new Mac Jr. and Grand Mac, new versions of the Big Mac, nationwide next year.
McDonald's will roll out the new Mac Jr. and Grand Mac, new versions of the Big Mac, nationwide next year. Credit: Courtesy McDonald's

Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese … It may soon be time to update the Big Mac jingle.

McDonald's said Thursday that it will offer two additional sizes of its famous burger for a limited time in early 2017. One version will feature two larger patties, while the other will downsize to a single patty and skip the middle bun.

Tinkering with its famous double-patty sandwich with a middle bun is another way for McDonald's to try to entice patrons to visit more often. The chain's October 2015 introduction of All Day Breakfast was a hit that helped ignite sales growth. Now, with All Day Breakfast more than a year old, McDonald's has come up with another way to make more of its existing product lineup.

The Grand Mac, as its name suggests, is larger than the Big Mac. The Grand Mac will include two patties that together weigh in at one-third of a pound before cooking, two slices of American cheese, special sauce, lettuce, minced onions and pickles, and is served on a larger sesame seed bun. The two patties in the original Big Mac total one-fifth of a pound.

The Mac Jr. has one patty and skips the middle bun. McDonald's said the single-layer Mac. Jr. has a bigger beef patty, yet is easier to eat on the go.

"The Big Mac is a legend and a great-tasting burger with hints of pickle relish, mustard, garlic and onions," McDonald's Chef Mike Haracz said in a statement. "We listened to our customers who told us they wanted different ways to enjoy the one-of-a-kind Big Mac taste."

The new versions of the Big Mac are planned for a limited time.
The new versions of the Big Mac are planned for a limited time. Credit: Courtesy McDonald's

The Big Mac, introduced by Pennsylvania franchisee Jim Delligatti in 1967, went national in 1968. The famous jingle made its debut in 1974. The song, which has been used on and off over the years, was cooked up by Keith Reinhard, now chairman emeritus of DDB, and his team at Needham Harper and Steers.

The national introduction of alternatives to the 540-calorie Big Mac will not occur until early next year. Restaurants in Central Ohio and Dallas/Fort Worth tested the burgers earlier this year. Next, locations in Florida and the Pittsburgh area will offer the new burgers beginning in mid-November.

It's not the first time McDonald's has tried to cook up a new way to serve the Big Mac. In 2009, some might recall, the chain tested the Snack Wrap Mac: half a beef patty, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions wrapped in a flour tortilla. That version was echoed by the Whopperito that rival chain Burger King introduced this year.

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