The Real Purpose Of The Rectangular Buttons On McDonald's Lids

Soda is where fast food restaurants really make their money — but so many sodas look and taste similar, especially diet and regular versions of the same brand. Maybe you already knew the reason McDonald's lids and other fast food drink cups have those round buttons: Employees can mark which drinks are which.

But drink cups have a lesser-known secret: Behind those round circles are smaller rectangular pieces of plastic. As it turns out, these are buttons, too.

The little rectangular strips of plastic behind the labeled buttons on fast food cup lids are actually reset buttons. So if you accidentally press the round 'diet' marker, for example, you can use the rectangle button to pop it back into place. Even though, at McDonald's, all sodas are famously just $1, you still want to make sure you're enjoying the drink you ordered.

This is just one of many secrets at the popular burger chain. TikTok and other social media are full of the absolute best McDonald's hacks that can score you hidden menu items and save you money. And when internet commenters learned about the actual purpose of the rectangular ridges, they couldn't believe it.

Commenters were mind-blown about the McDonald's soda lid hack

When social media users learned that the lids on their better-than-average McDonald's Coke and other sodas actually contained reset buttons for the drink labels, many were mind-blown. One Twitter user even posted an emoji of an exploding head.

A TikToker amassed more than 11 million views with a video of himself demonstrating the hack, with the caption "I was today years old when..." Commenters were just as surprised. "I worked in fast food and didn't even know this lmao," one wrote.


All this time wasted not doing this on road trips to annoy my siblings🤦🏻‍♂️ #today #years #old #fyp

♬ original sound – Michael Mckee

Not everyone was as impressed; other folks online took the news in stride. "I don't know why I would ever need to backspace but nice to know it can be done," one commenter pointed out on Twitter.

However, due to growing environmentalist movements, there's a chance these lids might become a thing of the past. In the U.K., Burger King is phasing out plastic lids for dine-in orders as a way to cut down on unnecessary plastic waste at its restaurants. In total, they estimate this change could result in 30,000 kilograms less plastic used per year. That's a lot of rectangular buttons' worth!