McDonald's versus Hungry Jack's

McDonald's is well known around the world and is exposed in popular culture to both blind adoration and serious criticism as the biggest fast food franchise in the world. McDonald's was founded in the United States and has been through a number of slogans over the years, the current being "I'm lovin' it."

In Australia, McDonald's biggest competitor is a Burger King franchisee called Hungry Jack's. Burger King also hails from the United States. The Hungry Jack's slogan is a direct attack on their competitors' products: "The burgers are better at Hungry Jack's."

McDonald's and Hungry Jack's sell many of the same sorts of products, and in this article I will line them up side by side.

The Burgers (except Chicken)

Burgers are sandwiches with a round sesame seed bun and a patty of some kind of pork, beef, seafood or vegetable matter. (We here at Foobar have decided to put chicken in its own category.) McDonald's allows you to add bacon to any burger which does not normally have it.

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
Mega Mac (grill order, promo item 2010) Ultimate Double Whopper (w/ bacon)
Big Mac Whopper
McFeast Deluxe Aussie Burger
Quarter Pounder With CheeseWhopper With Cheese
Double Quarter Pounder Double Whopper
Hamburger (no seeds, heart tick if w/ salad) Hamburger
Cheeseburger (no seeds) Cheeseburger
McDouble (single cheese slice, no seeds) (2010-2011, value item) Bacon Deluxe
Double Cheeseburger (no seeds) Double Cheeseburger
Triple Cheeseburger (no seeds) Triple Cheeseburger
Lean Beef Burger (2009, no seeds) Whopper Junior (w/ cheese optional)
Mighty Angus (no seeds, large square patty) M Angry/Classic Angus (single small patty)
Grand Angus (no seeds, large square patty) M Angry/Classic Angus (double small patty)
Fillet'O'Fish (fish, no seeds, heart tick if w/ salad) Veggieburger
Angus the Third/Angus the Great (no seeds, large square patty) (2010/2011 promo items) M
Mac Wrap (beef, Big Mac sauce, no bun) (2010, value item)
BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger (no seeds) (2010, value item) (2011, promo item)
McBLT (no seeds or beef, w/ mayo) (2010, value item, grill order)
Deluxe Cheeseburger (no seeds, w/ mayo) (2009, value item)

This tableaux (just a little bit fancier than a table) has been updated with the Almighty Angus wars of late 2009. While Macca's was going for a high-end experience using a special bun and unique salad formulations, the Hungry Jack's clones only have the Angus name attached. They are far less grand and mighty, and may end up leaving you slightly angry. They are priced at a fast-food level, however, which is the only real criticism of Macca's offering (unless you meet a store which skimps on the formula, or you have some sort of problem accepting that quality fast food doesn't have to be an oxymoron.)

Chicken menu

Many items on the Macca's and Jack's menus have chicken in them. For now, I'll exclude the kids menu... (For a bigger chicken range, check in at another fast food chain.)

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
Chicken Fillet Deluxe With Bacon (burger) (seared or crispy) M Chicken Royale (long roll, crispy)
Chicken Fillet Deluxe (burger) (seared or crispy) M Spicy TenderGrill/Crisp (burger, seared or crispy)
Classic Chicken Fillet (burger, no tomato) (seared or crispy) M TenderGrill/Crisp (burger, seared or crispy)
McChicken (burger, heart tick if w/ salad) Flame Grilled Chicken (burger, seared)
Chicken McNuggets Chicken Nuggets
Deli Choice Wrap (seared or crispy) (see below) M Chicken Wrap (crispy)
Mini Snack Wrap (seared or crispy) (2009 value item) M
Legends/Grand Chicken (burger) (2010/2011 promo item) M

Promotional items (2008)

Being an Olympic year, Maccy D's decided to play on its sponsorship of the games (Official Restaurant of Beijing 2008) by offering four promotional items. At the same time, Jack's was promoting the latest additions to the Batman and the Simpsons' franchises and generally clogging arteries around Australia with its "Stackers", consisting of multiple layers of beef, cheese and bacon doused in barbecue sauce. Reminded me of the Fungry's spoof that CNNNN used to do. Mmmm. I'm Fungry!

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
McAsia wrap Double/Triple Stacker
McAmerica bagle Quad Stacker
McAfrica burger The Simpson's Ultimate Whopper
McAustralia burger (not the same as McOz) The Dark Knight Whopper
McEurope burger (chicken)

Some items outlasted their promotional timeframe in some stores. The Ultimate Whopper is also available as a regular menu item now, without the Simpson's moniker.

Promotional items (2009)

Apart from the Angus Wars, 2009 was a quiet year for promotions. Macca's restructured their menu around seared versus crispy chicken, and introduced a value range that no-one really wants a piece of... (Deluxe Cheeseburger? With mayo? What were they thinking? That item is now discontinued, of course... But the value menu persists, just without the Apple Pie into 2010.) Hungry Jack's tried to one-up their "Stacker" controversy from last year with the "XL" range. But alas bigger patties didn't cut through with bigger Michael Jacksons, Sri Lankans, Chasers and John Safrans to fry in the Oz media landscape.

The biggest standout of the year may actually have originated in 2008 when TenderCrisp was first introduced: the Cheesy Bacon TenderCrisp. You can probably still order it "your way", as all the ingredients are available.

Promotional items (2010)

More Anguses? Really? These two chains have no imagination. Macca's do an Angus the Third which is really just a Grand Angus with a special chilli sauce. Mostly Hungry Jack's have toned down their anger for a Classic Angus this year, but the Angry was back for a little while mid-year and may be back again before the year is over.

Macca's have expanded M-Selections into breakfast and reformulated the Chicken Deluxe range with bigger chicken fillets. On the minus side, all M-Selections no longer have Coon cheese (yes, we really have a cheese called that in Oz—named after a guy with the surname Coon—it is a brand now owned by a yankee doodle cigarette company no less, along with Vegemite.) Mustard yellow coloured plastic is the new black here.

Bourbon* Whopper was a new one from HJ's, but there trying an Al Fresco TenderCrisp chicken range right now. Macca's redid there value range late in the year (September) to remove the McBLT and Double Bacon McMuffin (boo hiss) and put up a McDouble and a Mac Wrap instead. There appears to be no value brekkie menu item, but they are doing a Super Tomato Special McMuffin thing. Personally, I think the Aussie Deluxe Brekkie McMuffin thing from earlier in the year was better. Yeah, I'm really tiring of the confusing and unnecessarily longwinded names they're coming up with here...

Towards the end of the year Legends Chicken arrived, along with McDippers. McDippers have not since disappeared. Not to be outdone in the chicken area, HJ's introduced TenderGrill to compete with Macca's seared chicken and to complement they're own TenderCrisp. Not all stores have continued with TenderGrill—and indeed some Macca's franchisee's have also opted out of seared chicken, which has proved not to be so popular with customers.

* No alcohol- it just "tastes like" bourbon.

Promotional items (2011)

Two new McAnguses so far this year, and a new M Selections chicken burger has replaced the Legends Chicken from last year. The Anguses are a sauteed mushroom variety called Angus the Great and a Hickory Smoked BBQ doused version called (rather unimaginatively) the Smoky BBQ Angus. Both have swiss cheese. Meanwhile the Classic continues at HJ's, along with its breakfast cousin, the Angus Brekkie Wrap.

Speaking of breakfast, Macca's has two new US city themed Bagels: the Avocado sporting Boston and the Hollandaise topped New York City. Both are M-Selections also.

BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger has returned, but using the new Hickory Smoked BBQ sauce found on the Smoky BBQ Angus. McDoubles are still to be had on the value items menu.

Wraps versus Baguettes

Before the middle of 2008 (and the beginning of 2009 in Macca's case), those looking for a more generous sandwich could have indulged in Hungry Jack's fifteen centimetre baguettes or McDonald's Deli Choice Rolls. But now that those are gone, competitors Subway have the monopoly, with a more healthy selection of insides to boot. (There are exceptions to the Deli Roll shut out, being the Deluxe Brekkie and the Bacon & Egg, which both exist as Roll options on the Macca's breakfast menu, presumably because they sell well. And those sales owe nothing to healthy image, I am sure, because they are loaded with saturated fats.)

The table below now shows M-Selection wraps. Hungry Jack's still chooses not to compete in this space. I have also marked all M-Selections on this page. These are supposedly "premium" items for the more discerning punter: M-Selection burgers, including chicken burger items above, come on sourdough buns and include a more varied lettuce than the typical iceberg. The clone versions from Hungry Jack's come on corn-dusted buns. Personally, and I consider myself the more discerning of the discerning punters, I prefer the wheatgerm bun the HJ Grilled Chicken comes in.

All wraps are chicken wraps and come with a choice of crispy or seared chicken. (Note that while HJ's no longer have baguettes, they do have one wrap- see the Chicken section.)

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
Chicken Tandoori (heart tick for seared only) M Flame Grilled Chicken
Sweet Chilli Chicken M Spicy Chicken
Chicken Caesar (2008 Deli Choice Roll) M Ocean Catch/Country Chicken
Turkey & Cranberry (2008, Deli Choice Roll) Veggie
Chicken BLT (promo item)

Apparently some stores still do the baguettes, so more power to you if you can find one that does.


Menu extras, mainly to compete with the fish and chip store down the road. In McDonald's case, the Pasta/Zoo/Goo was to woo yuppie parents back after their programming by Aussie current affairs TV to steer clear of the traditional Cheeseburger/Hamburger Happy Meal (burger and fries). But after its failure, it's back to the drawing board. Meanwhile, enjoy your deep fried fare!

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
French Fries French Fries
Pasta Pets/Zoo Goo (kids menu) Onion Rings
McNuggets/Cheeseburger/Hamburger Happy Meal (kids menu) Chicken Nuggets/Hamburger Kids Meal (kids menu)
Apple Pie (2009 value item)


Salads for yuppie mummies. If you combine a Garden Salad with a McChicken, Fillet O'Fish or Hamburger (previously a Lean Beef Burger) and also stick with OJ or water instead of a fountain soft drink, you'll be eating a meal approved by the Australian Heart Foundation. Shock horror, but true.

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
Garden Mixed Salad (heart tick) Caesar Salad
Warm Crispy Cut Salad (2008 Salads Plus) Greek Salad (not available all stores)
Warm Herb Fusion Salad (2008 Salads Plus)


Not all Hungry Jack's do brekkie...

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
Hash Brown Hash Brown
English Muffin Aussie Brekkie
Egg & Bacon McMuffin Egg & Bacon Muffin
Egg & Sausage McMuffin/Mighty McMuffin (Bacon) Egg & Sausage Muffin
Sausage McMuffin Sausage Muffin (grill order)
Hotcakes Pancakes (why don't they call them "Flapjacks?")
Aussie Brekkie Wrap (2010, promo item)Bacon, Sausage & Egg Brekkie Wrap
Double Bacon McMuffin (2010, value item) Steak/Angus & Egg Brekkie Wrap
Rosti, Egg & Bacon Wrap M
Bakehouse Brekkie Roll M
New York City Bagel (2011, promo item) M
Boston Bagel (2011, promo item) M
Egg & Bacon Roll (not available all stores)
Deluxe Brekkie Roll (not available all stores)
Buttered Raisin Toast
Sanitarium Cereal

Macca's used to have a big brekkie too—still do in the US. Time to move there, I guess.

Grill order

As the McFeast Deluxe is now gone from McD's main menu, you'll need to "grill order" it. You could also grill order some of the promo items which have more recently disappeared. Items like (some of my old favs):

McFeast Deluxe is a little more complex, however...

  1. Start with a Quarter Pounder With Cheese
  2. You'll be keeping the patty, the cheese, the T-sauce and mustard
  3. I'll leave it up to you whether you want to keep: onions and pickle
  4. Ask to have added: lettuce, McChicken mayo and tomato


To help with grill orders, this is the terminology each store uses. Remember, get the sauce you want on your burgers! Not available all stores. Colours may vary. (Actually, to be serious for a minute, the struck out sauces probably never made it to Australia, they were only used on international formulations.)

McDonald's Macca's Hungry Jack's Jack's
Special "Big Mac" Sauce Thousand Island Dressing (N/A)
McChicken Mayo Mayonnaise
Tomato (or T*) Sauce Ketchup
Cheeseburger Mustard (we have a match!) Cheeseburger Mustard (we have a match!)
Deluxe Sauce (as on the Arch Deluxe) Cheeseburger Mustard+Mayonnaise
BBQ Sauce (depends on the store) BBQ Sauce (depends on the store)
Sweet Chilli Sauce Sweet Chilli Sauce (depends on the store)
Avocado Spread (as on the Boston Bagel) Al Fresco Sauce
Tandoor Sauce Bourbon Sauce (depends on the store)
Hollandaise Sauce (as on the NYC Bagel) Angry Sauce (as on the Angry Angus)
Hickory Smoked BBQ (as on the Smoky BBQ Angus) Black-Pepper Ketchup (as on the Dark Whopper)

* That's really just an Aussie nickname, they don't really call it that officially.

Author and editor: Kade "Archer" Hansson; e-mail:

Last updated: Sunday 24th April 2011