The Happy Meal® has been enjoyed by families around the world for decades. Just as every family around the world is different, our Happy Meal changes with them. We’re listening to parents and have evolved our Happy Meal to include more wholesome sides.
We began evolving the Happy Meal in the U.S. in 2004, when we started offering choices such as Apple Dippers, milk and apple juice in select markets. In 2012, we began automatically including Apple Slices in every Happy Meal.
Since then, we’ve continued to make changes to core items, like removing artificial preservatives from our Chicken McNuggets® and hamburgers (except the pickle, which contains an artificial preservative, so customers can skip it if they’d like). We also removed soda from U.S. menu boards, resulting in a 15% increase in the number of Happy Meal orders served with milk, water or juice drink between 2013 and 2018. More than 3.4 billion fruit, low-fat dairy and water items have been served in U.S. Happy Meal orders since 2013.
Addition of Apple Slices
Happy Meals make it fun for our youngest guests to enjoy some wholesome options. We first added Apple Slices to the Happy Meal with the introduction of Apple Dippers in April 2004, and began including pre-sliced apple packages in every Happy Meal in 2012.
Boosting the Happy Meal Bundle
In 2014, we added Go-GURT® Low Fat Strawberry Yogurt, with 25 percent less sugar than the leading kids’ yogurt*, as an additional side option for Happy Meals. We also stopped promoting soft drinks as a beverage choice with the Happy Meal in 2014. This led to a real change in how families ordered, with more families selecting milk or juice drink as their beverage choice with Happy Meals.
McDonald’s continues to make positive changes. In 2018, we announced ambitious Global Happy Meal Goals with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.
* Go-Gurt® at McDonald’s has 5g of sugar per 2 oz. The leading kids’ yogurt has 8g of sugar per 2 oz.