Why McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets Come In Four Basic Shapes


In case you weren’t aware, McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets come in four different shapes. They’re not just formless blobs of chicken meat; they’re actually formed into distinct shapes.

We had no idea.

Next time you eat them, see which shapes you get: a bell, boot, ball or bone.

See if you can spot them here.

“Our Chicken McNuggets are shaped uniquely for kids and kids at heart—it makes dipping more fun!” the company said on its website.

We agree. But why four?

“Three would’ve been too few,” McDonald’s said. “Five would’ve been, like, wacky.”

Okay. Four it is.

And you may be wondering: How are they made?

First, the chickens’ skins are removed (with a bit added back later “for flavor”). Then, the chicken is ground up. The dark meat from the drumsticks and the thighs does not get used for the McNuggets, Amy Steward, principal meat scientist at Tyson Foods, told CNET.

So what does get used? The breast and rib meat, in addition to the chicken tenderloin.

Next, the shapes are made with cookie cutters (!) and coated in tempura batter—they’re semi-fried and flash-frozen, so they’ll be at peak flavor when the individual McDonald’s restaurants fully fry them.

The various shapes are all about the same size, so that they’ll require the same length of time to cook, McDonald’s stated.

Are you “lovin’ it” yet?

You can even gather together a whole lot of McNuggets to make a McNuggets bouquet.


(Yes, please.)

You can watch a video on the whole McNugget-making process below.

[youtube id=”Ua5PaSqKD6k”]


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About the Author
Natalia Lusinski
In addition to Simplemost, Natalia is an ongoing writer for Bustle (sex, dating, relationships, and money), HelloGiggles (pop culture and news), The Delite (feel-good stories), and Don’t Waste Your Money (yep, money issues!). You can also find her writing in the L.A. Times, the Chicago Tribune's RedEye, xoJane, Elite Daily, Scary Mommy, Elephant Journal, and Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies, among other publications. She has a Ph.D. in couch-surfing, having spent four years sleeping on over 200 L.A.-area love seats and sectionals, all in an effort to whittle down her student loan debt. She still loves couch-surfing in other cities, too (hint, hint).

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