Recently, McDonald’s invited us to test out the newest addition to their Happy Meals menu.
Our family haven’t ever really eaten at McDonald’s, save for a couple of drive throughs on long trips, but as the new Happy Meal promised to be as tasty as ever but much healthier, and my interest was piqued.
With an average of 3.5 million customers everyday in the UK, McDonald’s is a food retailer that can make a big difference with even a small change, and that’s worth exploring, so Mark, JD, Jay and I headed to St. Paul’s in London to check it out.
Giving parents what they want
Interestingly, McDonald’s didn’t simply pop the new Happy Meal on the menu following internal discussions, they actually developed the product by consulting closely with Mumsnet users.
To get a better idea of what kids and their parents want out of a kid’s menu, they surveyed over 1,000 Mumsnetters and then created a focus group, where Mumsnetters and Gransnetters could try the new menu options and talk through their thoughts with McDonald’s.
The grilled chicken wrap
JD loves a chicken sandwich, so I was pleasantly surprised to discover that McDonald’s were swayed by 78% of Mumsnetters who said they’d like to see a grilled chicken wrap on the menu.
Here’s how the new grilled chicken wrap shapes up nutritionally. When you compare it to something like a kid’s pizza at one of the family chains, or a coffee chain sandwich, it’s actually very favourable.
Nutrition Values per portion
Grilled Chicken Wrap
|Energy — kJ||765kJ|
|Energy — kcal||181kcal|
|Of which saturated fat||0.9g|
|Of which sugars||2.9g|
As standard, the grilled chicken wrap comes with grilled chicken, shredded lettuce and low sugar ketchup wrapped in a small tortilla. And you can choose to add tomatoes, pickles or onion. This was something requested by 93% of Mumsnetters, and I can see why – kids get just what they want, and can leave out what they don’t want, so no food waste!
The verdict? It’s a good sandwich. With whole pieces of chicken, fresh salad, soft tortilla, there’s nothing not to like!
The chicken wrap is part of a Happy Meal, so kids can also choose a side (a bag of carrots, a bag of melon pieces or small fries) and a drink (a water, orange juice, semi-skimmed milk or fruit shoot).
I’ve always believed that eating out has a place in a family’s diet, and I think it’s important we don’t frame things as ‘treat food’ vs ‘normal food’ or ‘good’ vs ‘bad’.
As families, I believe we should take joy in food whilst learning what should make up the majority of our diet and what it best enjoyed occasionally and in moderation.
But even with an open minded approach, I’ve tended to shy away from “fast food” assuming it could only offer calorie-dense, nutritionally poor options. However, having tried out the wrap and had a fun afternoon at McDonald’s, I think it’s clear that a grilled chicken wrap Happy Meal is a perfectly good option for a quick meal on the go in a family-friendly setting.
This is a commissioned post for McDonald’s.