The most ridiculous fast food menu items of 2019 so far

Fast food fads come and go, often so fast that it's hard to keep up. But occasionally, a truly memorable menu item comes along. Why so memorable? Because it's so extra. Like, ridiculous extra. Sometimes it's a good ridiculous — as in, dang, these cheese fries are ridiculous. Other times, though, the ridiculous borders on ludicrous. As in, who ever thought to put this on a menu and market it to the masses? As you might have guessed, we're here to talk about both.

Each year, fast food restaurants seem to get lost in a cycle of one-upping each other to see who can come up with the most indulgent, dramatic, and, sometimes, downright puzzling recipes. Don't get us wrong; there are definitely times that sort of fierce competitiveness and confidence combine to form food we could only have imagined in our (most indulgent) dreams.

This year alone, there has been an impressive turnout of food so extra or imaginative it can only be described as ridiculous. From fries made out of funnel cakes to a burger so spicy it'll make you sweat, here are the menu items that did the most in 2019… so far. 

Jack in the Box Burger Dippers

In February 2019, The Impulsive Buy stumbled across a truly interesting concept: a cheeseburger in fry form. You're probably thinking, "Huh?!" Understandable — this isn't the sort of thing you see every day. In fact, depending on how well-received they are (or not well-received), it might be the sort of thing you only see in 2019.

When Food & Wine caught the scent of these strange rectangular "burger dippers" at Jack in the Box, it confirmed with a spokesperson that the chain has been testing the strange hybrid snack in select locations. In March, a Twitter user documented proof that burger dippers weren't a mythical food item by snapping a photo of the offering being advertised on a Jack in the Box menu in Sacramento, California. 

So, what does a cheeseburger compacted and shaped like an oversized french fry taste like? "It tastes like they literally put a whole burger in a blender and then deep fried it," one Jack in the Box patron told The Impulsive Buy. And who knows? Maybe burger dippers will be a big enough hit in test markets to make it nationwide. Fans of the bizarre food were tweeting about it as recently as March 21, 2019, so it's only a matter of time until we find out the ultimate fate of burger dippers. 

Burger King Funnel Cake Fries

In full disclosure, Burger King's funnel cake fries may not have originated in 2019 — per The Impulsive Buy, a version of this powdered sugar-coated snack has been on the menu before. The year was 2009, and they were then called "Funnel Cake Sticks." But it's been over a decade since that prior incarnation was introduced, so it's safe to say they've been erased from the public's collective consciousness. (Besides, the earlier version had a different name and quite possibly different formula.) 

This brings us to the present day. On January 23, 2019, BK teased their new sweet treat, writing on Instagram, "Crazy: putting 'cake' and 'fries' in the same sentence. Insane: adding 'powdered-sugary goodness.' Introducing funnel cake fries, now at Burger King." Um, yum? It's hard to say whether this is ridiculous bad to the point that sounds good, or so ridiculously bad that it's bad. Your perception probably has a lot to do with just how sweet your sweet tooth is. 

Either way, if you didn't get a chance to make that determination yourself, you're out of luck — for now. Funnel Cake Fries were reportedly only being offered for a limited time at participating restaurants, but if Twitter users get their way, they'll be back on the menu soon.

McDonald's Donut Sticks

While donuts not in donut-form seem a bit like sacrilege, who are we to argue with progress? If Mickey D's wants to give us donuts shaped like a stick, then by God we should all appreciate the innovation and eat them. Suffice it to say this new menu item begs to be filed under "ridiculous good" — which is what makes it particularly tragic that this seriously extra snack may have exited 2019 as quickly as it arrived.

Admittedly, there's a bit of confusion on that front. As recently as May 23, fans of the menu item were still happily getting their hands on the limited edition Donut Sticks. But also on May 23, Twitter user @jenniferohjenn lamented the apparent loss of these sweet treats. "So @McDonalds has these donut sticks…. They are like little sticks of happiness. Sugar and cinnamon…. Warm…. Perfect! I waited until Thursday to have them (cheat day) and guess what!! THEY JUST CALLED ME TO TELL ME THEY DON'T HAVE ANY," she wrote. 

Maybe you're lucky enough to live in an area where McDonald's is still offering Donut Sticks. If so, you probably want to know what to expect. Well, according to Thrillist, this snack "has some similarities to a churro" but is "flakier," as well as "light and airy like a croissant." They're apparently treated like a breakfast food and taken off the menu around 11 a.m. Oh, and they reportedly pair perfectly with coffee.

Burger King Spicy Chicken Parmesan Sandwich

Burger King probably isn't the first place to spring to mind when you think of Italian food. And yet, the chain recently added a classic Italian dish to its menu: chicken Parmesan. Well, sort of. As reported by Business Insider in May 2019, BK now offers a chicken Parmesan sandwich, a menu item originally launched back in 2017. However, 2019 is a new year and it was apparently time for a new chicken Parm. So, BK did what any reasonable fast food franchise would do — it gave the Italian-inspired sandwich a big twist.

Per Fox News, BK decided to go for broke by taking its already unique sandwich and making it super-spicy, breading the fried chicken patty with a blend of fiery spices. BK describes the Franken-sandwich as being "made with a 100 percent white meat seasoned chicken filet, fried crispy and breaded with bold flavors and just the right amount of heat." And then that spicy patty gets loaded up with three layers of marinara sauce, melted mozzarella cheese and shaved Parmesan cheese, all packed into a toasted potato bun. 

If it sounds like a lot, it's probably because it is. 

Carl's Jr. Bacon Truffle Burger and Bacon Truffle Cheese Fries

Truffles in fast food? With the March 2019 unveiling of its limited truffle burger and bacon truffle cheese fries, Carl's Jr. is getting posh. This indulgent meal is an interesting dichotomy of gourmet and guilty pleasure, and Carl's Jr. knows it. "Truffle is traditionally viewed as a rare indulgence, and we're bringing it to the everyday dining experience by infusing the distinct truffle flavor into an entirely new offering for our burger-loving customers," Owen Klein, vice president of Culinary Innovation for Carl's Jr. told QSR.

In a review of the burger, the dish is described as having a "savory unctuousness" thanks to the truffle-infused white cheddar sauce. Paired with a 100 percent Black Angus beef patty, two slices of applewood-smoked bacon, crispy onion strings, Swiss cheese, caramelized onions, and mayo on a toasted premium bun, the burger is "quite rich and more than a little greasy," according to Brand Eating.

Curious about the fries? They're a much more pared down version of the burger, topping the starchy strings with only the truffle-infused white cheddar sauce and applewood-smoked bacon pieces.

KFC Cinnabon Dessert Biscuits

First of all, everyone knows KFC's biscuits are the best. So, the fact that they've decided to turn them into a dessert food feels like too much in all the right ways. Per Thrillist, for a limited time, KFC is smothering its fluffy carb pillows in Cinnabon's cinnamon brown sugar glaze and cream cheese frosting. Basically, it's like manna from heaven. 

A spokesperson confirmed to Thrillist that this decadent dessert-like treat originally rolled out as part of the chain's Mother's Day campaign. KFC officially introduced the item on social media in early May, writing on Twitter (in the voice of Colonel Sanders, of course), "I may just be a humble chicken salesman/colonel/doctor, but I know a good dessert when I dream one. And, boy, have I dreamed one! Take a gander at the new @Cinnabon Dessert Biscuits, pulled fresh and streaming from my subconscious." 

It's unclear how long the ooey gooey offerings will be available for, but KFC does describe them as being a limited-time item. Also up for grabs for a limited time? Free Cinnabon Dessert Biscuits. Per KFC's website, "You can get four dessert biscuits for free when you buy a 10-piece bucket meal or larger." 

Sonic Red Bull Slushes

Sonic has more than a few flavors of its iconic Slushes under its belt. At any given time, the drive- (and skate-) thru eatery offers a sweet assortment to choose from — and they get pretty inventive with their selection, too. Naturally, there are classics like cherry and grape represented. But in 2018, Sonic made waves by introducing a polarizing Pickle Juice Slush. They also offer Slush candy add-ons like Nerds and Pop Rocks. And, in 2019, they announced they would be adding Red Bull Slushes for a limited time.

Designed to "refresh" and "energize" you, Sonic's Red Bull-infused Slush takes the classic energy drink and turns it into an icy treat that comes in two different flavors: Original Red Bull and Cherry Limeade Red Bull. But, just like 2018's Pickle Juice Slush, the new flavor doesn't seem to be a unanimous hit. On social media, it's already racked up an eclectic array of reviews, ranging from "nasty" and "so gross" to "the best gimmick drink" ever. Just be forewarned; in addition to the obvious caffeine, a large Cherry Limeade Red Bull Slush packs a sugary punch with 111 grams

Wendy's Frosty Cookie Sundae

When you find a favorite food, you don't want anyone to mess with it. It's the whole "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" ideology. Such is the case with Wendy's Frosty — that gloriously thick and creamy dessert treat you may or may not use for dipping your french fries. Then again, no one ever discovered greatness by refusing to take chances. A compelling case for being bold is Wendy's Frosty Cookie Sundae.

In case you ever wondered what you'd get if you crossed a vanilla Frosty with big ol' chocolate chunk cookie bites and then drizzled all of that in Ghirardelli chocolate sauce, here's your chance to find out. Decadent? Check. Rich? Check. "Bangin'"? That too, if you ask Twitter user @Linville34.

Like many of the out-there food items on this list, though, Wendy's Frosty Cookie Sunday won't last forever. Although an end date isn't specified, Brand Eating reported in late April 2019 that this blissful indulgence is part of a "limited-time menu item for the warm weather." 

Burger King Angry Whopper

Way back in 2012, Burger King rolled out a menu item known as the Angry Whopper — a combination of a beef patty, hardwood-smoked bacon, habanero cheese, jalapeño slices, spicy-fried onion petals, tomatoes, lettuce, and a spicy "angry" sauce. It was like a Whopper on steroids. In a 'roid rage, if you will. And although it went away all those years ago, BK brought it back in April 2019. Only, it isn't exactly the same. 

It's still excessively spicy, sure, but the chain toned it down just a bit. In place of the habanero cheese of old, BK opted for American cheese this go 'round. As for the rest of the spicy stuff, it's still all there. The heat factor here is intense and so are the calories, the latter of which come in at a whopping (yep, went there) 850 calories for one burger. So, it's definitely not for the faint of heart. Like, literally, if you're going to partake of this extremely spicy and caloric beast, you should probably make sure your ticker is in good working condition before you tackle the challenge.