Artificial Ingredients Have Been Removed From McDonald's Classic Burgers

McDonald's burgers just got more "real." The fast food giant has already been using fresh beef for its quarter-pound burgers, and it just went one step further by removing artificial preservatives, flavors, and coloring from two-thirds of its menu. The changes affect McDonald's seven classic burgers: the hamburger, McDouble, Big Mac, single and double cheeseburgers, and single and double Quarter Pounders with cheese.

As CNN reports, calcium propionate (a preservative often used in bread) was removed from the burger buns, and sorbic acid (another preservative) was removed from the American cheese that McDonald's used. The Big Mac Special Sauce has also been revamped, and ingredients like potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, and calcium disodium EDTA were removed "without sacrificing that signature taste," McDonald's said in a statement. As for the beef, it has always been "100 percent pure," meaning that it contains no additives, preservatives, or fillers, and it has been seasoned with just a pinch of salt and pepper. 

One notable exception to the new rule are the pickles, which still contain an artificial preservative. This move from McDonald's recognizes "that now more than ever, people care about their food—where it comes from, what goes into it, and how it is prepared," the company said. A spokesperson for McDonald's told Forbes that individual franchises set their own prices, but the company isn't anticipating any significant price increases as a result of the menu changes.

Previously, McDonald's removed artificial preservatives from its Chicken McNuggets, announced plans to only use coffee from sustainable sources by 2020, and to only use cage-free eggs in the U.S. and Canada by 2025. As CNN notes, this is part of an industry-wide trend that has seen fast food chains like Taco Bell, Subway, and Panera remove artificial ingredients from their food offerings.

[h/t CNN]

Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that McDonalds recently switched the brand's beef patties to "pure beef." That is not a new change. The story has been updated to correct this error.

KFC's New Firelog Makes Your House Smell Like Fried Chicken


The classic yule log has received updates from Star Wars, Nick Offerman, and Lil Bub over the years. This holiday season, why not stoke your fireplace with a log from the folks at KFC? As KRON reports, the fast food chain has produced its own firelog that releases the scent of Kentucky fried chicken when ignited.

The KFC 11 Herbs and Spices log is the best way to fill your house with delectable fried chicken smells without ordering takeout. Made in collaboration with Enviro-Log, it contains 100 percent-recycled materials and burns for up to three hours. KFC warns buyers that burning the log "may result in a craving for fried chicken," and that it "may attract bears or neighbors who are hungry." Despite the mouthwatering aroma, the KFC firelog is not safe to eat.

KFC and Christmas may seem like an odd pairing, but it's an annual holiday tradition in other parts of the world. In Japan, KFC has been a Christmastime staple for decades, with customers placing orders for buckets of "Christmas chicken" months ahead of the holiday.

The KFC log went on sale for $19 on Thursday, December 14, and it's already sold out from the online store, but keep checking back to see if they've restocked them.

It likely won't be the last scented novelty product we see from the brand: KFC has previously released a candle, nail polish, and sunscreen all made to smell like its famous fried bird.

[h/t KRON]

Where to Score Free Treats For National Cupcake Day

December is a magical time of year, and not just because of all the winter holidays. A few days on the calendar this month cater to those of us with a sweet tooth, and we can’t say we’re complaining. National Cookie Day fell on December 4, followed by National Brownie Day on December 8, and we still have National Cupcake Day to look forward to tomorrow, December 15. Because if you’re already planning to indulge in Christmas cookies and cake, why not go all out?

The icing on the cake is that a few bakeries across the country will be handing out free cupcakes tomorrow. Sprinkles Cupcakes will be giving away a limited edition strawberry cupcake with rainbow sprinkles to the first 100 visitors at each of its bakeries, which are located in California, Nevada, Arizona, Texas, Illinois, Florida, New York, and Washington, D.C. The bakery will also be doing “impromptu cupcake drop-offs” around New York City tomorrow.

Baked by Melissa also promises customers a free cupcake of their choosing at any of its 14 outlets in the New York City region, according to Metro. The company will also post information about a cupcake giveaway to its Instagram page tomorrow, and you can participate by tagging a friend in the comments. Two winners will receive a “Superstar” pack of 50 cupcakes.

If you happen to live in Cleveland, LaBella Cupcakes is taking a unique approach to the holiday and launching a scavenger hunt at 10 a.m. tomorrow. It will take participants to 10 historic locations around the city, and the person who solves the clues the fastest will take home a dozen free cupcakes. Check out the company's Instagram and Facebook pages for more details. 

There’s also a chance one of your local, non-chain bakeries will be hosting a promotion, so it’s worth visiting their website or social media pages to see if there are some freebies you can take advantage of.