McDonald’s Makes a Surprising Menu Change (Right Now)

The fast-food giant will bring a new item nationwide on April 12.

Since the pandemic, McDonald’s has mostly kept its menu intact, Most of its promotions have involved existing items in new combinations.

The chain has leaned on its celebrity meal collaborations which are really just a suggested order from its standard menu. McDonald’s (MCD) – Get Free Report has also put some secret menu/menu hacks on its regular menu, or at least made it easier for customers to order them.

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Aside from the newly renamed McCrispy chicken sandwich, the chain has put its efforts into efficiency, not menu innovation. While Restaurant Brands International (QSR) – Get Free Report Burger King and Wendy’s (WEN) – Get Free Report have regularly rolled out limited-time offers (LTOs), McDonald;’s has mostly avoided doing that.

That’s an intentional choice by the chain which has focused on its ability to service customers faster. This has included a massive explosion in its delivery business and a huge increase in orders placed via its app and through in-store ordering kiosks.

By adding very few limited-time offers to its menu, McDonald’s has made changes to its menu even more special. Now, the company plans to add a new take on a classic dessert to its menus nationwide.  

People wait in line at a McDonald’s.

Image source: Ezra Acayan/Getty Images

McDonald’s Adds a New McFlurry Flavor

McDonald’s has always had a pretty limited dessert menu. The chain has its classic soft serve, which is also offered with toppings as a sundae and it has shakes, an apple pie, a chocolate chip cookie, and the McFlurry.

A somewhat controversial offering, if only because the machine that makes it breaks down so often, the McFlurry has a lot of versatility. Since it’s just ice cream mixed with toppings, the chain should be able to offer new versions of it often, in the same way Dairy Queen brings in new Blizzard flavors seasonally.

McDonald’s actually hasn’t done that all that often — perhaps because it didn’t want to exacerbate the ongoing problems with the McFlurry machine. Now, the chain has a new McFlurry flavor that it plans to roll out nationwide Chew Boom first reported.  

“McDonald’s is celebrating spring 2023 with the debut of the new Strawberry Shortcake McFlurry starting April 12, 2023. The Strawberry Shortcake McFlurry features the brand’s signature creamy vanilla soft-serve, strawberry-flavored clusters, and crispy, buttery shortbread cookies,” the website reported.

McDonald’s Strategy Has Been Working

While Burger King and Wendy’s have relied on LTOs to drive sales, McDonald’s has focused on its efficiency and speed of service. That has actually worked, according to comments made by the chain’s CEO Christopher Kempczinski during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call.

“Despite continued volatility in nearly every corner of the globe, McDonald’s delivered exceptional growth throughout 2022. We achieved full-year comp sales growth of 10.9%, delivered strong guest count performance with 5% growth globally, and saw our momentum strengthen as the year progressed with double-digit comp sales growth across all segments in Q4,” he shared.

The chain has delivered that growth, at least partially, by focusing on its core menu items.

“Throughout 2022, some of our most successful campaign platforms brought our customers closer to the core menu items they love. The strength of our brand goes beyond the Golden Arches themselves and includes our iconic products such as our world-famous French Fries, the Big Mac or Chicken McNuggets, and the McFlurry. Each of these products are billion-dollar brands and in total, McDonald’s possesses 10 of these billion-dollar brand equities. In an environment where our customers are looking for the simple and familiar, our core menu items have never been more relevant or beloved,” he added.


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