Fast Food Fallacies: Fast Food Menu Items Compared to Their Ads

The resemblance between what you see and what you get at fast food restaurants has been a hot debate in the massively obese business community for decades. But the differences between what we see in the ads and what we actually wind up eating just seems to get further and further apart with each passing year.

The blog Alphalia picked up a few popular fast food menu items, took the prettiest possible photos of them they possibly could and then compared them to their advertisement counterparts. The results speak for themselves. As a bonus, I’ve added a picture from The Consumerist of Taco Bell’s Cantina Tacos compared to their advertised form. How far can you go before its considered false advertisement?

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  1. Fast food is disgusting, true but you obviously roughed (not fluffed)some of these feasts up. Especially the taco bell, the one in my town would never serve swill beat up as the ones in the picture.

  2. No, kingcobra2k, i don’t think they roughed them up at all. In fact, the last shot from Taco Hell as I like to call it looks way better than what I got when I tried those new Cantina tacos, I think they are calling them. Mine had very little meat and onions and none of the green things at all. I was shocked when I got home with it. Sad part is I don’t think anyone truly expects the food to look as good as ads do but to be edible doesn’t seem a big request considering the money these places make. Edible, cheese on the burger and not the wrapper, fully cooked with no hair, none of these are that hard but you wouldn’t know it based on what I have gotten at these places.

  3. Oh yeah, that’s lookin’ good compared to some of the fastfood I’ve been served in my neck of the woods. It’s legal bait & switch as far as I can tell. Never once have I gotten something that looked as good as it did in the ad or on the menu board.

  4. Oh no!!! These are all right on! They ARE THAT disgusting! Especially those j in the b tacos, ugh they make me sick watching people eat them!

  5. They can get away with anything as long as they call it a “serving suggestion”. They’ve been sued before for fraud based on the differences between what’s advertised and what’s actually served. The courts readily bought their excuse -I mean, defense that the ads were simply “serving suggestions”.

    But how can it be a “suggestion” when it’s absolutely impossible to serve the product that way?

    In my opinion, “serving suggestions” are nothing but legalized fraud and bait-and-switch. Anything that is not as advertised, or is a bait-and-switch is what I call a “serving suggestion”.

  6. Advertisement is sure way clever to promote ones product! And whats surprising is that some does care while others aren’t for the sake of popularity or something else. Nevertheless, this post should be circulated for them be aware of their misleading acts, i mean every fast food business in concern.

  7. Oh, Advertisements. The land of fairy tales and falsehoods. The images are computer engineered and the actual product is a chemically produced bio-hazard.

    Unrealistic ideals? For more than just our food. Even people in the advertisements aren’t real- I guarantee you that her boobs and his abs are not real. See, the burgers’ and tacos’ complexions are better in photo, too.

  8. the fast food i eat always looks better than that especially the whopper im not sure if its where you live or something but fast food actually sometimes looks like the ads where im from

  9. In Japan the food looks just like it does on the picture. Even at McDonalds. Of course, they actually take some pride in their food and demand more quality.

  10. The Whopper compare is spot on, I get burgers that look similar from my BK on a regular basis. It’s a shame you didn’t do a Big Mac as well. The actual product of these chains is mass produced by people that get paid the absolute least amount these companies can legally pay them. I’m never surprised by what I get from fast food chains because I already know it’s going to be crap. That’s just the price you pay for being lazy or not having enough time to make your own meal. If you want a better meal, you pay the 3 extra bucks and get take out from a local business.
    Suffice to say, we all contribute to this problem here in the U.S..


    What a dumbshit article.

  12. Great article – it is always comical to see advertising at its best.

  13. Half of the stuff they advertise isn’t even edible afterward due to so much “primping” of the product!

  14. I agree with Chris, when I traveled to Japan I stopped in a Mc Donalds in Tokyo and ordered a big mac meal, I was served promptly and with a big bright smile by happy employees. The food even looked exactly like the picture, I was shocked!!! I stopped in another location a few days later in Kyoto to see if it was the same, and indeed my filet o fish was fresh, hot and looking just like in the picture, so yes, fast food can me made as good as the picture. Sad thing is most places do not care enough to try….

  15. I love this post! We’ve definitely experienced this on several occasions! It’s what the above poster said, these people are barely getting paid. So, they don’t care if your burger looks like the picture. They just throw the stuff together and hand it to you.

  16. So true where I come from, but I’ve been in Japan for the past 5 years myself. The fast food tastes just the same but they really pay attention to presentation round here. The Whoppers look just like the photos, the Big Macs look like food, and the Domino’s pizzas are cut into equal slices. Even the toppings are spread evenly. I have no idea how they do this – it must involve some complex pepperoni algorithms to work out how many slices per square inch. Or maybe the high school kids who cook the stuff are forced to commit ritual suicide if the customer complains. However they do it, once you get sick of eating sushi and tempura (which takes a long time), you can’t beat the Japanese for making a Big Mac and fries (known as a Biggu Makku Setto) actually look like a meal.

  17. This is why I always eat tacos from TACO TIME! 100% better than Taco Smell any day of the week.

  18. I think it depends on where you go…I used to work at McDonald’s and we did have some employees that made some good looking sandwiches. That being said, we also had employees that could’ve cared less about how the food looked, just so long as they made it and it was sent out successfully. I also know of some really awful McDonald’s in my area that I NEVER go to because I never get edible food.

  19. junkie mcjuckfood

    all of you guys are dumb ass hell because if all the food looked as good as it did in the ad then it wouldn’t be fast food…catch my drift!!!

  20. the food doesn’t look as bad as the pics are……

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