The Fast Food Classic That Anthony Bourdain Couldn't Get Enough Of

In 2010, Anthony Bourdain went to war on fast food in The Guardian, writing, "I want my little girl to see fast-food culture as I do. As the enemy."  You might be inclined to think that the Johnny Cash of the food world, known for his love of tattoos, karaoke, and Film Noir would shy away from anything mass-produced (via CNN). Not so.  

The world-renowned foodie behind the hit TV shows No-Reservations and Parts Unknown obviously loved to sample the local, the artisanal, and the peculiar. You couldn't convince us to try cobra's heart, maggot fried rice, or raw seal eyeballs. But Bourdain didn't flinch (via The Daily Meal). 

That doesn't mean he didn't have a soft spot for mass-produced food. Because he did. A big one. For example, in 2017 he told The Boston Globe that he had a "perverse desire" to see how every hotel he stayed at made their spaghetti bolognese. And that's not even the half of it.  

The surprising fast food classic that Anthony Bourdain couldn't get enough of

What is Anthony Bourdain's "really disgusting, shameful pleasure?" According to the interview with The Boston Globe, it's mac and cheese at Popeyes. Bourdain was, purportedly, so embarrassed about his obsession with fast-food macaroni and cheese that he would hide under a hoodie before ordering himself a serving. Yes, other reviewers have compared the "mush yet brittle" noodles to "prepackaged cafeteria food," but to each his own (via Business Insider). 

Bourdain also secretly coveted mac and cheese from KFC according to an interview with WebMD. What does KFC's mac and cheese taste like? If you believe Insider, downing a serving is a bit like "eating straight margarine." Maybe that's why, per Bourdain, when fans caught him with a KFC mac and cheese it was like "being recognized leaving a porn shop'" (via AJC). 

Maybe mac and cheese isn't your thing. That's okay. Bourdain's infatuation with fast food went beyond mac and cheese.  

Pay homage to Bourdain by ordering at this fast-food chain

Everybody knows that Anthony Bourdain hated McDonald's, and particularly their chicken nuggets (via Cheat Sheet). But he didn't disavow all fast-food burger joints. In fact, Bourdain was an outspoken fan of Los Angeles, California chain, In-N-Out Burger. He liked it so much, that whenever the New York-based foodie took a trip to LA, his first stop was inevitably the In-N-Out franchise next LAX (via CBS Los Angeles and Twitter). 

What in particular did Bourdain order? Try ordering an "Animal Style," a double-patty burger complete with hand-leafed lettuce, grilled onions, and pickles (via In-N-Out and Eater). Don't take our word for it, take Bourdain's. As he assured the world in an interview with Eater, the burger is "like a ballistic missile. A perfectly designed protein delivery system." 

In the end, if it was good enough for Anthony Bourdain, it is certainly good enough for us!