This TikToker Found a 24-Year-Old McDonald's Hamburger in Her Grandma's Closet

And McDonalds explained its surprisingly near-pristine appearance.


I'm finicky when it comes to leftovers. There are only certain restaurants and foods I deem worthy of a day-after reheat, and don't even get me started on the proper process for doing so. But one policy I won't budge on is that after it's been sitting in your fridge for more than a few days, it has no place on your plate. 

Some folks take saving food to extremes, though. Like, say, the grandmother that saved her McDonald's hamburger for... 24 years. TikTok user @aly.sherb took to the social media platform last week to showcase the surprisingly intact burger and fries her grandmother has kept in a shoebox for all these years, with its original packaging and all. The video had 3.9 million views at press time.

"The bread has never molded, the meat has never rotted," Aly's grandmother says in the video, as she showcases the, um, leftovers. "It’s never even broken -- it’s completely intact." 

And that it hasn't. The burger certainly doesn't look fresh, but you'd hardly expect the thing to date back to 1996. 

This isn't the first time an old, yet mysteriously mold-free McDonald's hamburger has gone viral. In fact, this is sort of a recurring thing, which may or may not have you questioning the kind of preservatives we've consumed. In fact, just last November someone happened upon the 25-year-old Quarter Pounder they had tossed in a cabinet back in the '90s -- only to rediscover the fast food classic looking shockingly unharmed.

And while you might be a little worried about all those Big Macs you pounded back in the day, at least we can rest easy knowing McDonald's has upgraded to fresh meat. The fast food giant had a perfectly sound reason for these... long-lasting burgers. 

"In order to decompose, you need certain conditions -- specifically moisture," the company said in a statement posted Monday. "Without sufficient moisture -- either in the food itself or the environment -- bacteria and mold may not grow and therefore, decomposition is unlikely. So if food is or becomes dry enough, it is unlikely to grow mold or bacteria or decompose. Food prepared at home that is left to dehydrate could see similar results. Look closely, the burgers you are seeing are likely dried out and dehydrated, and by no means 'the same as the day they were purchased.' The reality is that our burgers are made only with 100% USDA inspected beef. There are no preservatives or fillers in our patties and the only thing ever added is a touch of salt and pepper on the grill."

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Megan Schaltegger is a staff writer at Thrillist.