Why McDonald's Was Called Out For Its Big Mac Sauce Pack

Have you ever been midway through a Big Mac and thought, "Why doesn't McDonald's sell this sauce separately?" Bottling up the fan-favorite condiment seems like a lucrative move for the golden arches — not to mention a great way to spice up other items on the menu. Imagine the extra creaminess you could add to classics like the McChicken or Filet-O-Fish by coating them in the legendary blend of mustard, pickle relish, and mayo. Recently, it seemed like this was finally possible for Big Mac lovers across the U.S. The chain began offering dip cups of Big Mac sauce for a limited time on April 27, finally allowing customers to dunk their food in the special sauce.

The joy was short-lived, as it soon became clear that the two sauces were not identical. In a viral video posted to TikTok, user @chefmikeharacz aka Mike Haracz explains why the new, packeted version is "not legit Big Mac sauce" compared to its predecessor. "McDonald's gets Big Mac sauce in these tubes that are refrigerated and brought into the restaurant," he tells viewers. "These little cups here, they have to reformulate the Big Mac sauce to be shelf stable." The result, as Haracz explains, is two very different condiments — he suggests asking for Mac sauce from the restaurant if you're looking for the original.

Why does the sauce taste different?

People in the comments section generally agreed with Haracz and commented on the notable taste differences between the two products. "I tried the cups and it tastes a little more acidic," one person said. "It tastes really vinegar-y," someone else agreed. "It's still good but definitely isn't the same." Others suggested which ingredients could have been swapped out or added. "I wonder if to make it more shelf stable they added ketchup," another person theorized, though this seems unlikely. Haracz, who once worked as a corporate chef at McDonald's, has already revealed in a previous video that ketchup is not typically part of the recipe, and the pinkish color of Big Mac sauce actually comes from paprika. Check out Haracz's TikTok below:


#stitch with @badluckshawty Former #McDonalds chef explains why this #BigMacSauce is fake. #mcdonaldssecrets #mcdonaldsdrivethru #mcdonaldslife #BigMac #bigmactiktok #bigmacrecipe #bigmacsaucerecipe #MacSauce #DoubleCheeseburger #mcdonaldsbigmac #FYP

♬ I Think I Like When It Rains – WILLIS

It seems likely that refrigeration methods are behind the change in taste. In a previous limited edition Big Mac sauce release in the U.K., consumers tried to stock up on the pots — only to discover they said "eat on day of purchase" and had a maximum seven-day shelf life. It makes sense that the chain would change the formula to prevent this from happening again, instead allowing fans to enjoy their Big Mac sauce cups for longer. Refrigeration is likely necessary for the sauce due to the presence of mayonnaise, which due to containing eggs, needs to be kept chilled. Unfortunately, there is no way to know if this is true, though, as the McDonald's website does not contain information on the sauce's ingredients or preparation methods.