The Inspiration Behind McDonald's McRib

McDonald's is a popular fast food brand that's easy to spot in many parts of the world, thanks in part to its iconic golden arches. The chain's large and often evolving menu keeps fans on their toes, giving them the opportunity to taste (or miss out on) many different products. One of these menu items is McDonald's somewhat controversial McRib

Per the brand's official website, the dish includes seasoned boneless pork coupled with a BBQ sauce, slivered onions, and dill pickles with a toasted bun. McDonald's describes the sandwich as "BBQ pork sandwich perfection." According to Forbes, the McRib was launched in 1982 and has been making recurring appearances on the menu ever since. (However, if you're in Germany, it seems you can get your hands on a McRib whenever you want.)

Don't underestimate fan's devotion to the McRib. There's even a website, the McRib Locator, that provides information on the availability of the dish at McDonald's outlets. Customers add details of the latest "sightings" whenever they come across the sandwich.

The McRib is rooted in southern cuisine

According to Maxim, McDonald's McRib sandwich was created by the brand's first executive chef, Rene Arend. The chef previously worked at a luxury hotel, and when he joined the fast food chain, he was asked to work on the brand's menu. (Fun fact: This is the man who invented the legendary Chicken McNugget back in 1979!) Arend explained that the nuggets ended up being so popular that McDonald's found itself struggling to get its hands on enough chicken and had to find another option. 

Arend said, "We had to come up with something to give the other franchises as a new product. So the McRib came about because of the shortage of chickens." The chef explained that he took significant inspiration from Southern BBQ when he created the McRib. He had eaten pulled pork sandwiches in South Carolina and was excited about trying something similar for McDonald's, which is how the McRib was born.