What was the worst "gimmick" fast food item you ever consumed?

Note: I don’t want people coming in here and listing stuff that got them sick or food poisoning or things where it was bad because of something out of the ordinary, the item in question has to be bad regularly and not just from a fluke. Also I don’t want people coming in here and saying “McDonalds” or just broadstrokes anti-fast food stuff because that’s not the point of the topic. I don’t care if your mother makes the worlds greatest pizza and we should all travel 1,000 miles to the middle of nowhere to try it over Pizza Hut pizza.

Fast food places have to try to “refresh” or “reinvent” themselves every so often, which means you’ll often get a seasonal or “gimmick” item that shows up for a few months than disappears rarely or never to be seen again. You’ll often see places like Taco Bell or Burger King seemingly coming up with a new gimmick item every single month, and we all know those can’t all be winners. So what was the worst “one and done” fast food item you ever had, stuff that you’re glad it gone, either because of taste or being horrendously expensive for what it was.

The Jack in the Box “Deli Trio” is probably a worst of both worlds scenarios in this case. Debuting about 6 or so years ago (I’ve found references to it showing up in 2010 online) it was literally just a sandwich you could make at home, with flat wheat bread and ham/turkey/salami layered in between. In addition for such a simple sandwich it was grossly overpriced at about $4 when the normal Jumbo Jack burger only cost $2 and you seemingly got much more food out of it. Plus owning to being a fast food item, it was very greasy and salty neither of which you would expect from a normal ham/turkey sandwich. It got to the point I remember the Jack in the Box website was giving out coupons you could print to get the sandwich free with ANY purchase, but not even that made them appetizing to me. They stuck around for a year before leaving the restaurant entirely, good riddance.

a while back jack in the box had this late night boxed meal where the sandwich was a supposedly grilled cheese sandwich that had a jumbo jack or something like it in the middle of it… they used some sort of cheese sauce and made the whole thing a soggy mess and it didn’t taste all that great either …
Now, this was probably a local thing but about 20-25 years ago a KFC manager decided that they’d use up all the leftover chicken … and tried to make burritos and potpie out of it … Well if you didn’t mind the bbq beans and undressed coleslaw and leftover deskinned chicken in a tortilla you might of liked it but i thought it sucked …
And the potpie was basically all their leftovers except coleslaw put in a pie crust with their gravy it wasn’t great but better than the “burritos” these days id say it was one of their "bowls " in a pie crust
oh and anyone remembers burger kings attempts at “tacos”? this was an attempt t omake jacks mystery meat tacos …just with leftover burger patties that were ground up… What they didn’t know is No one likes JIB’s tacos when they’re sober… and the meat was dried out tasting …they couldn’t sell them 3 for a buck in the 90s …

I worked at Jack in the Box at the time and I loved the Deli Trio sandwich. It could’ve been a little less salty, but it was delicious IMO.

Probably the worst gimmick sandwich we had in my time there, at least in terms of being a pain in the ass to make, was the “Sunrise Pannido”. This was a long, thin baguette with eggs, sausage, cheese, and Hollandaise on it. The problem was that it was so thin we had to chop the sausage patties and fried eggs in half with a spatula just to fit them on, which was easy to screw up and mean you had to start from scratch, and even then it was a crapshoot getting the ths sandwich closed without everything falling out of it.

We also had “pita snacks” for awhile. This was basically a flatbread taco that had your choice of a fried or grilled chicken strip, steak strips, or fried fish, topped with shredded lettuce, cheese, and chipotle sauce, for $1.99. We had to fold them into the sleeves for the regular chicken pita and then fold the sleeve shut, and when you tried to take it out it would invariably unfold and flop onto your tray. They never looked anything like the advertisement photos, people complained about them all the time, and I was honestly embarrassed trying to defend them.

We also had a chorizo breakfast burrito for awhile which was pretty good, but the company insisted on calling it a “chorizo sausage burrito”, and people were constantly complaining that they had expected sausage patties and what they got was basically chili sauce with finely-ground bits of sausage in it.

Nacho Fries from Taco Bell. They are nasty.IMO

heres the mess i ate… i liked the tacos better …https://www.jackinthebox.com/food/late-night/stacked-grilled-cheese-burger-munchie-meal tho i mis took the burger being in the grilled cheese sandwhich …

The McLobster Roll. McD’s rolled this thing out sometime in the early to mid 1990s. For reasons I probably don’t need to list here, that failed. I’ve heard that they are still available for a few months a year in the Northeastern states. If there are gas stations in the NE selling lobster rolls, I bet those are better.

The McDonald’s Lobster rolls around here were comparable to any I’ve had. Real lobster is hard to beat. The lettuce was just filler, but they were as good as lobster rolls costing twice as much.

I don’t know where you’re located, but we’re close enough to Maine so that the lobster was fresh.

Now if you want something nasty at McDonald’s, it’s the McRib.

Arbys Curly Fries. Horrible things, and they replaced what were excellent skin-on fast food french fries.

McPizza. In fairness, I didn’t expect much of a McDonald’s pizza, but I got less than I expected. It was similar to a frozen supermarket pizza that you might heat at home, but at twice the price. After one try, I resolved to stick to places that specialized in pizza–even chain operations like Pizza Hut made better than McDonald’s.

McRib is McRidiculous.

The McDonald’s fries with bacon and cheese. The bacon and cheese improve Arbys and Wendys fries via the Loaded Curly Fries and Baconator fries. However I think McDonald’s are the only low end fast food fries (not counting places like 5 Guys and french fry specialty places) that are tasty on their own, and the cheese goop is not appetizing.

So damn true. But what I love at Arby’s are the potato cakes. Delicious, hot creamy crunchy large blocks of tater tot style treats.

Jack in the Box tacos were so gross. Part of my issue with them was the shell. Half soft and greasy, half burnt and sharp.

McRibs… way too sweet.

I miss the Encherito.

Potato cakes are definitely the best tasting of the three but none were ideal. Curly fries are meant to be an unseasoned ketchup delivery mechanism so they’re right out. Their straight fries were hardly ever fresh, and conversely, the potato cakes are hardly ever available and so, while fresh, you have to wait for them.

Smurf ice cream. Color’s pretty and we’re reasonably sure no smurfs were hurt in its making, but it makes cardboard taste interesting by comparison.

My sister was still living at home and was a manager at McDs during that period. Each night she’d bring home a couple unsold pizzas and I ate a pretty steady diet of day old McPizza for a while. I remember it being “not great, but not too bad” although my standards at age 15 probably weren’t all that high.

Lighten up, Francis.

That’s what made them great, the freshness. Worth the wait, IMHO.

Speaking of McDonald’s, I remember the McLean being largely inedible. The fat content was replaced with some water and seaweed extract concoction that resulted in a dry salty “burger” patty.

I swear KFC is making fun of their customers and gluttonous slobs in general with their two items, The Double Down and KFC bowl.