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McDonald’s will offer a 63 cent McMuffin egg on Thursday

Now let’s celebrate a famous breakfast sandwich.

I’m talking about McDonald’s
MCD

Egg McMuffin, a simple but delicious combination of fried eggs, cheese and Canadian bacon, served on an English muffin. The breakfast service turns 50, and McDonald’s is marking the occasion by reducing the price of a McMuffin to 63 cents on Thursday, provided you order it on the McDonald’s app.

But I’m willing to pay full price for an Egg McMuffin – it costs $3.99 at my local Mickey D’s – and I usually do. It was a sandwich that was not only revolutionary for its time, but it remains one of the best in fast food land.

First, a bit of history. Before the Egg McMuffin, McDonald’s did not offer breakfast. For that matter, no fast food chain really does. This is an industry built on lunch and dinner burgers. Eggs are something people consume at some lousy hours when the only activity inside a fast food restaurant might be the team preparing to slice tomatoes.

Enter Herb Peterson, a McDonald’s operator in Santa Barbara, California. He wondered why he couldn’t serve something to customers looking for a quick and easy breakfast option, such as a morning burger. Peterson is also a fan of his eggs Benedict. So, in 1971, he came up with a portable version, going even further by having a blacksmith create a special iron ring, so he could cook a perfectly round fried egg for sandwich. McDonald’s officials say Peterson initially tried a version of the dish with the classic Hollandaise sauce, but later devised the recipe we know today. By 1975, Egg McMuffin was available nationwide.

Technically, Peterson isn’t the first McDonald’s operator to make breakfast — one in Pittsburgh started selling donuts and sweet rolls in 1970. But Peterson’s invention put McDonald’s on the breakfast map and created a whole new revenue stream for the fast food giant, which has annual sales topping $19 billion in 2020. McDonald’s officials would not say how much breakfast contributed to that profit, but QSR magazine, an industry publication, said in 2018 that pre-lunch orders account for 25% of the chain’s revenue. In other words, that’s a lot of Egg McMuffins.

And it also has lots of hot dogs and scones and hash browns, to name a few of the other items on Golden Arches’ breakfast menu. More on the matter: if you ordered a Croissan’wich at Burger King
QSR

or Grilled Cheese Burrito at Taco Bell
YUM,

or pretty much any breakfast item at any fast food chain, you’re witnessing the legacy of the Egg McMuffin. Wendy’s has invested $20 million to launch breakfast menu in March 2020. The Egg McMuffin is the game-changing sandwich — and in a sense, the way Americans (or at least the American fast food portion) eat it.

With that in mind, I went back to my local McDonald’s to buy an egg McMuffin this morning just to confirm what I basically knew – namely that the sandwich still worked. As I’ve rediscovered, the key to making it great is the balance between flavor and texture: the English muffin offers a little crunch; Canadian bacon with a hint of pork saltiness; cheese creates a note of cream; and the egg…well, the egg is the star. Mainly because it’s an actual egg – yolks, whites and all – rather than an egg “product” that never delivers the same level of satisfaction.

The Egg McMuffin is also perfectly customizable, which is something McDonald’s is trying to emphasize later this year. You can add bacon or tomatoes, if desired, string notes. I just put a little bit of McDonald’s hot sauce (Picante) in it. and have done so for many years.

For those interested in nutrition, the Egg McMuffin is truly one of the best bets on the McDonald’s menu, from a calorie perspective, at 300 calories. In contrast, the chain’s large hot dog biscuit, which contains 570 calories, has almost twice that amount. (That said, the Egg McMuffin is a bit high in sodium, with 820 milligrams.)

It’s probably no surprise that McDonald’s is playing Egg McMuffin right now, as it’s no secret that the chain has run into some trouble in recent years. breakfast is available. (And restaurants really love their breakfast business because it’s more profitable—because the company’s eggs cost less than burgers and chicken.)

Pandemic-related closures also hit fast-food restaurants like McD’s and Taco Bell by eat a bit from their breakfast sales as millions of Americans start working from home. And McDonald’s abandoned its all-day breakfast menu last year in an effort to simplify operations during the pandemic, company officials said. chain does not exclude profit.

I hope it comes back. I tend to order an Egg McMuffin rather than a Big Mac or Quarter Pounder for lunch or dinner. It’s satisfying and less intoxicating. And it provides proof that Herb Peterson had something from half a century ago. Times may change, but the Egg McMuffin lasts forever.

Fast Foodist is a new MarketWatch column that looks at restaurant menu items through a critical and business-minded lens. Send product suggestions that you think should be critiqued to cpassy@marketwatch.com.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/mcdonalds-is-serving-63-cent-egg-mcmuffins-a-look-at-how-the-sandwich-revolutionized-fast-food-11637177144?rss=1&siteid=rss | McDonald’s will offer a 63 cent McMuffin egg on Thursday

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