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The Big Mac is a hamburger sold by the international fast-food chain McDonald's. It is one of the company's signature products, along with the Quarter Pounder.

Product description

The Big Mac is the hamburger consisting of two 1.6 oz (45.4 g) beef patties, special "Mac" sauce (a Thousand Island dressing variant), iceberg lettuce, American cheese, pickles, and onions, all served on a three part sesame seed bun.


  • The Mega Mac or Double Big Mac - four 1.6 oz (45.4 g) beef patties and an extra slice of cheese. Available in China, Ireland, Serbia, Japan, Turkey, Malaysia and Thailand (Double Big Mac). Discontinued in Australia and New Zealand; limited availability in the United States and Canada (where it is commonly marketed under the name Double Big Mac). It is still available in one restauarant in the United Kingdom, in Manchestermarker.
  • Monster Mac - eight 1.6 oz (45.4 g) beef patties and extra cheese. Discontinued in Germany.
  • the Mckinley-Mac - made with two quarter pound patties. Named after Mt. McKinley in Alaska, and sold only in that state. Also known as the Bigger Big Mac as an LTO product to celebrate the 2006 FIFA World Cup.
  • In India, where the high Hindu population means that beef is not common, the Big Mac was renamed the Maharaja Mac and was originally made with lamb instead of beef; however, along with the company's other items it is now made from chicken.
  • Son of Mac - Also known as the Mini Mac or Baby Mac, a version with only one patty and no centre roll piece. It sold as a Baby Mac in New Zealand, Was sold in Australia, now discontinued. Served by some stores in the United States under the moniker "Mac Jr".
  • In Israelmarker, a special Kosher version of the Big Mac is served without cheese.
  • In Japan, there was a variant with egg, called the Mega Tamago, as well as a variant with tomato (called the Mega Tomato). Both versions dropped one patty and replaced it with the respective ingredient. Now discontinued.
  • In France there is a now a whole wheat bread version of the Big Mac. All other ingredients remain unchanged.

Special sauce

The name comes from a 1975 advertising campaign featuring a list of the Big Mac's ingredients: "Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun." The precise recipe for what McDonald's itself now calls Big Mac Sauce remains a secret, but it is recognized as a variant of Thousand Island dressing.

Big Mac Sauce is delivered to McDonald's restaurants in sealed canisters designed by Sealright, from which it is meant to be directly dispensed using a special calibrated "sauce gun" that dispenses a specified amount of the sauce for each pull of the trigger. Its design is similar to a caulking gun.


The Big Mac was created by Jim Delligatti, one of Ray Kroc's earliest franchisees, who was operating several restaurants in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvaniamarker area. It was designed to compete with the similar Big Boy. Customer response to the Big Mac was so good that it rolled-out nationally in 1967. One of its most distinctive feature is a middle slice of bread ("club" layer) used to stabilize contents and prevent spillage.

The Big Mac is known worldwide and is often used as a symbol of American capitalism. The Economist has used it as a reference point to determine the cost of living in different countries — the Big Mac Index — as it is so widely available and is comparable across markets. This index is sometimes referred to as Burgernomics.


The earliest instances of McDonald's utilizing advertising for the sandwich were mainly print ads, and a TV ad where Hoyt Axton sings "The Ballad Of Big Mac" which aired in 1969.

Two all beef patties slogan

The Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun concept for the jingle was created by Charles Rosenberg, Creative Supervisor of the Dan Nichols team at Needham, Harper and Steers, Chicago. Originally, the ingredients appeared as a one-word heading for a McDonald's ad developed for college newspapers. The words were then set to music created by Mark Vieha, who performed the original jingle. Charlie's advertising concept was to purposely turn the ingredients into a tongue twister. The jingle first appeared in a TV commercial titled "In a Word" developed by Dan and the advertising agency team. The first run of commercials ran only a year and a half, going off the air in 1976, but its popularity remained beyond its TV life.

Many franchisees in the United States ran promotions during the original campaign that awarded a free burger to customers who could recite the slogan within a specified time (usually two or three seconds). One example of its success, was that the McDonald's operators in New York City actually ran out of Big Mac buns. McDonald's Australia emulated this promotion in the mid-1980s, and some Brazilian McDonald's around the same time (only offering a free glass of Coca-Cola instead), in the Portuguese version, which goes as "Dois hambúrgueres, alface, queijo, molho especial, cebola e picles num pão com gergelim".

In 2003, McDonald's revived the phrase. In an English-language ad from McDonald's international "i'm lovin' it" campaign, a rapper rapidly spouts off the trademark in the background music. Also in 2003, American Greetings and Carlton Cards released a Christmas ornament of a Big Mac, on which the slogan was both printed and played aloud by pulling on a string. Roy Bergold, National Advertising Manager at McDonald's, has a big hand in championing the original campaign and helping to bring it back.

In 2008, the phrase was revived by McDonald's Malaysia. The revival includes the original prize of a free Big Mac if the customer is able to recite the phrase in under four seconds. This was released in May, along with the promotional Mega Mac, which has four beef patties rather than the standard two.

McDonaldland character

In addition to the McDonald's signature hamburger, Big Mac was the name of a character in McDonaldland, the fictional world created as an advertising campaign for McDonald's. Big Mac was similar to Mayor McCheese, except he was the chief of police, wearing a constable uniform and sporting a large Big Mac for a head.

2004-2005 advertising

In 2005, McDonald's began offering product placement rewards to hip hop artists who namechecked the Big Mac in their music, giving US$5 to the artist for every time a song mentioning the hamburger was played on the radio. This offer quickly spawned a satirical reference from Hip Hop artist Mad Skillz, who references the marketing ploy in his track "2005 Wrap Up" by stating "And I'm beefin' wit' Mickey D's man, y'all dead wrong, Talkin' 'bout payin' rappers to mention Big Macs in their song, We do rap from the heart, y'all better have some respect, Alright, Big Mac! Big Mac! Big Mac! Now where's my check?"

Nutritional values

In the United States, the Big Mac has 540 kcal (2,340 kJ), 29 grams of fat and 25 grams of protein. In Australia, however, the burger is smaller with 480 kcal (2,010 kJ) and 24.9 grams of fat, but similar amounts of protein with 25.3 grams, while the Mexican burger tops out the scales at 600 kcal and 33 grams of fat.
Comparisons of the Big Mac standard nutritional values in different countries (% = % of recommended daily allowance)
Country Energy Carbohydrates Protein Fat (total) Dietary fiber Sodium Serving



495 kcal 42g (14%) 24g (32%) 26g (47%) 2.5g (10%) 1083 mg (45%) 202g .ar
480 kcal 36.2g 25.3g 24.9g 800 mg 201g .au
504 kcal 41g (14%) 25g (33%) 27g (49%) 3.5g (14%) 1023 mg (43%) .br
540 kcal 44g (15%) 24g 29g (45%) 3g (12%) 1020 mg (43%) 209g .ca
555 kcal 57g 27g 28g 1098 mg .cl
495 kcal 40g (15%) 27g (36%) 25g (37%) 3g (12%) 2300 mg (46%) 219g .hr
495 kcal (25%) 40g (15%) 27g (36%) 25g (37%) 3g (12%) 2300 mg (46%) 219g .cz
497 kcal 43g 27.1g 24.1g 219g .dk
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2300 mg 219g .fi
492 kcal 38.9g 26.2g 25.8g 4.2g 900 mg .fr
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2300 mg 221g .de
490 kcal 42.5g 27g 24g 5g 2000 mg .gr
510 kcal 39g 25g 28g 870 mg   .hk
495 kcal (25%) 40g (15%) 27g (36%) 25g (37%) 3g (12%) 2300 mg (46%)   .hu
505 kcal 43g 27g 25g 4g .it
545 kcal 42.7g 26.1g 25.8g 2g 864 mg 216g .jp
484 kcal 46g 26g 23g 730 mg 209g .my
600 kcal 50g 25g 33g 4g 1050 mg 219g .mx
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2300 mg .info
492 kcal (24%) 35.4 g (11%) 26.3 g (53%) 26.3 g (38%) 1080 mg (47%) 201 g .nz
495 kcal (25%) 40g (15%) 27g (36%) 25g (37%) 3g (12%) 2300 mg (46%) .no
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2300 mg .pl
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2.3g .ro
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g .ru
559 kcal 49.3g 27.7g 24.89g 4.6g 801.98 mg .za
535 kcal 46g (14%) 27g (45%) 29g (57%) 750 mg (22%) 219g .kr
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2300 mg .info
495 kcal 40g 27g 25g 3g 2300 mg .info
490 kcal (25%) 41 g (15%) 28 g (37%) 24 g (36%) 4 g (16%) 2100 mg (42%) .uk
540 kcal (27%) 45 g (15%) 25 g (45%) 29 g (45%) 3 g (13%) 1040 mg (43%) 214 g .us

See also

Similar products by other fast food chains:


External links

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