McDonald’s tries fresh beef patties

mcdonalds burger

After Wendy’s not-so-subtly slammed rival QSRs earlier this year for using frozen burger patties, one of those competitors—McDonald’s—could be on a path to change its frozen ways.

McDonald’s is currently testing the use of fresh beef at 14 locations in Dallas, the chain confirmed Thursday. 

Its fresh beef test is limited to patties cooked for the Quarter Pounder, McDonald’s spokeswoman Lisa McComb said, including the Quarter Pounder with Cheese, Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese, Bacon Clubhouse Burger and the Homestyle Burger, a regional sandwich served in the Dallas market. 

Though learnings from the test could inform the chain’s decisions down the line, it’s “very premature to draw any conclusions,” McComb noted.

Still, a move toward fresh beef could be a bid for the business of expanding fast-casual burger chains, many of which emphasize their freshness; not to mention other QSRs, with whom McDonald’s is currently embroiled in a price war.

Most QSR burger chains, with the exception of Wendy’s, use frozen patties. 

Members help make our journalism possible. Become a Restaurant Business member today and unlock exclusive benefits, including unlimited access to all of our content. Sign up here.


Exclusive Content


Restaurants have a hot opportunity to improve their reputation as employers

Reality Check: New mandates for protecting workers from dangerous on-the-job heat are about to be dropped on restaurants and other employers. The industry could greatly help its labor plight by acting first.


Some McDonald's customers are doubling up on the discounts

The Bottom Line: In some markets, customers can get the fast-food chain's $5 value meal for $4. The situation illustrates a key rule in the restaurant business: Customers are savvy and will find loopholes.


Ignore the Red Lobster problem. Sale-leasebacks are not all that bad

The decade-old sale-leaseback at the seafood chain has raised questions about the practice. But experts say it remains a legitimate financing option for operators when done correctly.


More from our partners