McDonald’s Wouldn’t Create the McWhopper, So I Did, and It’s an Abomination

What happened when we called Burger King's bluff

Headshot of David Griner

As a wise Jeff Goldblum once put it, we were so busy wondering if we could, we didn't ask if we should.

Well I'm here to tell you: No. No we should not.

Burger King deserves credit for its masterful PR move this morning of running full-page newspaper ads offering to partner with mega-rival McDonald's on a McWhopper, created in celebration of Peace Day.

This beefy olive branch was described as "the tastiest bits of your Big Mac and our Whopper, united in one delicious, peace-loving burger."

Sadly, the world will never know what such a combination might have looked or tasted like, because McDonald's quickly declined the invitation. 

But it was too late for those of us at Adweek, who were already obsessing over this mythological beast of a burger.

As for me, I'm a man of action. So I texted an accomplice, drove to Burger King and then headed across the street to McDonald's. Bags in hand, we settled in at a nearby park and commenced with our foray into forbidden science.

Part 1: What we bought

For fairness, I matched up the Big Mac with the Double Whopper with Cheese. We got two of each, along with some Chicken Fries and McDonald's fries, which are normally the only things I'd buy at either chain.

Finally, we were ready to unite them in body and spirit.

Part 2: How we assembled the meaty manticores

Here's the challenge I put to myself and my laudably accommodating friend, Tanya:

"It's like when two people in their 30s get married. They both have a lot of stuff, so you have to decide what gets kept and what gets tossed when they move in together. So what survives the Big Mac-Whopper marriage?"

My version:

Top bun: Whopper

Top meat: Whopper

Middle bun: Big Mac

Bottom meat: Whopper

Bonus meat: Big Mac

Bottom bun: Whopper

Tanya's Version:

Top bun: Big Mac 

Top meat: Whopper

Middle bun: The top bun from a Whopper

Bottom meat: Big Mac

Bottom bun: Big Mac

Part 3: How they tasted

Mine: Like way too much low-grade beef. Admittedly, I included a combined total of three patties, so the meat-to-not-meat ratio was regrettable. Also, with so much mayo slathered on the Whopper bun and special sauce on the Big Mac components, the texture was rather disturbingly … creamy. I ate half of it and then it basically just disintegrated into primordial muck.

Tanya's: "The first thing you taste is the Whopper. The Whopper's larger, and has more of a distinct taste regardless. No matter what, you just taste the Whopper." So there you go, the McWhopper is basically just an overly expensive and logistically challenging-to-assemble Whopper.

Part 4: Our recommendation for those trying this at home

Well, for one: Don't.

Nothing about this experiment felt worthwhile, other than the fact it was a good excuse to catch up with a friend on a lovely late-summer day. If the weather is crappy and you hate being around other people, I certainly don't recommend trying this.

But if you must, we recommend Tanya's approach:

Top bun: Big Mac

Top meat: Whopper

Middle bun: Whopper top bun

Bottom meat: Big Mac

Bottom bun: Big Mac

Part 5: Bonus creation – Chick 'n' Fries

Now this was a mashup we could get behind:

@griner David Griner is creative and innovation editor at Adweek and host of Adweek's podcast, "Yeah, That's Probably an Ad."