Elevate Copycat Big Macs By Cleverly Swapping The Middle Bun

Is there any fast food burger out there that's more iconic than a Big Mac? The towering handheld at the helm of the McDonald's menu is by far the chain's most popular burger, with roughly 550 million sold annually in the U.S. alone. You may have even helped contribute to that statistic yourself, in which case, you know how satisfying a number one from the Golden Arches can be.

Unfortunately, it isn't always easy to satisfy your craving for the monstrous sammie. Sure, the grills at McDonald's are way less likely to be broken than the ice cream machines, but there's always a chance that something could prevent you from getting your hands on the meal. Just ask Don Gorske, who has only gone eight days without eating the sandwich since 1972 — one of which the Fond du Lac Reporter says was due to a snowstorm that prevented his local McDonald's from opening.

Luckily, Mickey D's has made it pretty easy for patrons to re-create its famous Big Mac at home. Not only did the chain detail all of its fixings in its infamous jingle, but in 2012, one of its executive chefs even revealed the exact ingredients that make up its signature special sauce. As an added bonus, making copycat Big Macs allows you to get a little creative, and if you're looking for where to start, chef Edward Lee tells Food & Wine you should look no further than the middle bun.

A fried green tomato is just one possible replacement

It may seem blasphemous to stray from the Big Mac's standard make up of "two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, on a sesame seed bun" when making copycat versions of the star of the Mickey D's menu, but Ronald McDonald isn't in charge of your home kitchen — you are. And that means anything goes, including chef Edward Lee's suggestion of swapping out the sandwich's middle bun for a fried green tomato.

Before you say anything, we know that middle bun – known professionally as the "club" – is a crucial part of the Big Mac's structure that Thrillist says inventor Jim "MJ" Delligatti included as a means of soaking up the special sauce. We totally respect his decision, too, but as Lee, who you may recognize from "Top Chef," explained to Food & Wine, "the fried tomato adds crunch and a mild acidity." Plus, he notes, "more bread is boring."

Green tomatoes are typically available in the late summer and early fall, but if you want to elevate your copycat Big Mac outside of the fruit's seasonality, there are plenty of other swaps you can make. Three years ago, a Reddit user piqued the interest of many others on the platform when they swapped out the middle bun for a hash brown, while a TikToker elevated his homemade Big Mac by replacing the club with fried mac and cheese.