Hooniverse Asks- What's the Worst Thought-Out Drive-Thru Food?


The United States recently lost to Mexico its long-held title as the most obese nation on the planet. Saddened by having been relieved of this crown, we hung our collective heads in shame, only to discover that lost bit of drive-thru burrito stuck in the fold between our chest and full moon of a stomach. See? Every cloud really does have a silver lining, and it’s delicious.

America long held the title due to our twin loves of fatty food and lethargy. Bringing those two passions together in an orgy of cardiovascular disease and ever flatter seat cushioning is the fast food drive-thru. If you have a hankering for a nosh in your Nash, or a burrito in your Buick, then you don’t even need to bother getting out of the car, you can just… drive through.

The thing of it is, most food that may be ordered through a loudspeaker is stuff that’s pretty easy to consume whilst sitting in your ride. Sometimes however, that mix of convenience and cleanliness misses the mark, and the food you desired turns against you even before it gets to your rapidly constricting arteries. That’s why it’s less likely that our Canadian friends would order Poutine in their Porsches. What has been your experience with road food, specifically drive-thru fare, and more importantly, what has been the worst conceived – as far as mess goes – food on the go?

Image source: Glitter Girl’s Blog

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54 responses to “Hooniverse Asks- What's the Worst Thought-Out Drive-Thru Food?”

  1. krazykarguy Avatar

    Even though burgers through a drive thru window are de rigeur in the US, the Burger King Whopper (love them as I may) are completely inappropriate to eat while driving.
    Huge floppy burger, thin buns, drippy tomato and mayo = lap full of Whopper.

    1. Dean Bigglesworth Avatar
      Dean Bigglesworth

      Isn't that why modern cars have adaptive cruise and lane assist..? 😉
      Seriously though, eating anything sloppier than a cheeseburger while driving is a bad idea.

      1. FuzzyPlushroom Avatar

        I stick to granola bars, bananas, or any sort of bagged snack food that doesn't leave crumbs or stains… if you have to look at it or use more than one hand while the car's moving, it's a terrible idea.

        1. MVEilenstein Avatar


        2. Dean Bigglesworth Avatar
          Dean Bigglesworth

          I rarely eat in the car, on longer(over 500km) trips I usually drive until the tank is empty and eat something at the gas station.
          On a recent trip to Norway I had to stop halfway trough Sweden to eat at Burger King though, seeing as we don't have it here and I had never eaten at one. Other than that I just drove for 7 hours each day, only stopping once a day to take a leak or refuel.
          Picture of loaner in front of bk on the way to Norway.
          <img src="https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/74465213/gt86arboga.jpg&quot; width="600" </img>

  2. Bryce Womeldurf Avatar

    Ice cream, in Florida specifically. It starts melting as soon as it leaves the freezer, no matter how cool your air conditioner blows, and it gets everywhere! There never seems to be enough napkins.
    A close second would probably be fried chicken. I've never tried it in a car, just because extra crispy crumbs can not be contained.

    1. racer139 Avatar

      My grandfather (and ice cream connesseur and also diabetic) used to turn the a/c off while eating ice cream, somthing about it melting faster as the cold air blows over it.

      1. Bryce Womeldurf Avatar

        Huh, seems counter-intuitive but maybe stagnant air is the answer.

      2. TurboBrick Avatar

        Convection. Same reason why ice cube in a 400F oven will melt slower than an ice cube in sink with cold water running over it.

    2. MVEilenstein Avatar

      You need a Skoda Yeti do that. (3:35)
      [youtube E7kEJ-pHkWA http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7kEJ-pHkWA youtube]

    3. C³-Cool Cadillac Cat Avatar
      C³-Cool Cadillac Cat

      Funny you mention fried chicken…
      Once, on the way down to the Texas hill country with my then GF, now wife, we were behind a generic econo-sedan. Her '81 Mercedes 240D was having difficulty with the 3 MPH headwind, so we weren't closing particularly quickly.
      Periodically, we'd see small items flung out the windows. To our pretty much never-ending delight, it turned out to be chicken bones from a massive bucket of fried chicken.
      I think we snort-laughed/chuckled about that one until close to Killeen. We were not far out of south Dallas at the time…

  3. OA5599 Avatar

    <img src="http://www.grubbugs.com/images/pdp_taco_supreme.jpg"&gt;
    Greasy meat, drippy sour cream and hot sauce, loose pieces of chese and meat, all held together in a fragile shell thats open on three sides and getting soggier by the second.

    1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
      Peter Tanshanomi

      A taco is a breeze compared to a tostada. One bite and the tortilla shatters like tempered glass, with no way to hold onto more than 10% of the contents.
      <img src="https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTN4cD-D0mgRAJWtFMWK7e6McWMdwfJV5yWN-nPs_p4S7g8lC5hUw"&gt;

      1. Bryce Womeldurf Avatar

        Oh man, now I want a tostada.

  4. IronBallsMcG Avatar

    When I was a young man I carried spare pants in my car due to a love of Hardee's Mushroom Swiss burger.
    There's probably worse drive through fare, but that was my downfall.

    1. FuzzyPlushroom Avatar

      That may actually be a worse idea than the chili I was going to nominate.

  5. racer139 Avatar

    I once ate a swiss chalet quarter chicken dinner complete with dipping sauce whilst trying to get out of the city during rush hour. For some strange reason I never got a drop of anything on myself, while it I where to go in and actually sit down at a table I would get at least the dipping sauce on the white shirt I always seem to be wearing. I have also gone to a classy restraunt while wearing my blackest dirtiest work clothes- to have lunch.

    1. Maymar Avatar

      It would just be wrong to eat Swiss Chalet and not use the dipping sauce.

  6. engineerd Avatar

    I've tried eating a Double Double (even non-animal style) in the car on the way from home to school. It did not end well.
    <img src="http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7168/6595859927_1b2c6cb9a2.jpg&quot; width="500" height="299" alt="Heaven on a Tray">

    1. Irishzombieman☆ Avatar

      . . . which is why I order singles to eat in the car.
      And still make a mess.

    2. hwyengr Avatar

      Every car that I owned while living in CA had In-n-Out stains on the seatbelts where it crossed your chest. It's so tempting when they ask if you're going to eat it in the car, and trying to keep it in the wrapper just leaves you with a mouth full of tissue paper.

    3. mallthus Avatar

      The trick to In-n-Out in the car is this.
      2×4, animal style, no produce. The 2×4 refers to 2 patties, 4 cheese slices. The extra cheese keeps the sauce, onions and pickles contained, while the lack of lettuce and tomato (no produce), keeps the whole endevour from getting wobbly.
      This comes from many, many years experience.
      <img src="http://www.details.com/images/slideshows/mens/standalone/details/feature/0909/fast-food/00001f.jpg&quot; width=600>

  7. pj134 Avatar

    A, mostly gooey, pound of burrito stuffed into a tempered tortilla.
    <img src="http://www.grubgrade.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/XXL-Grilled-Stuft-Burrito-Taco-Bell.jpg&quot; width=500>

    1. Irishzombieman☆ Avatar

      YES. My favorite thing on their menu.
      A while back, they apparently heard me say "chicken burrito, grilled" instead of "chicken grilled stuft burrito." Turns out you can get any burrito grilled for free, and the $1.49 chicken burrito grilled is much cleaner in-car fare (though it takes 2 or 3 to equal the fullness a GSB gives).

      1. chrystlubitshi Avatar

        the $.99 1/2 lb beef and potato burrito was the way to go for cheap and full. The potatoes made it so heavy (in your stomach) that one was filling enough, 1.5 was about the same as the GSB.

  8. CherokeeOwner Avatar

    Fried chicken. As good as it is, the grease gets on everything you touch and the inside of your car smells of chicken for a while.

  9. cruisintime Avatar

    I had breakfast two hours ago and now I am all HUNGRY……..Thank You Hooniverse .

  10. K5ING Avatar

    The hardest food for in-car dining has to be Sonic's Foot Long Chili-Cheese Coney dog. It's really hard to pick up and eat, even while sitting still. Impossible to eat without having to hit the bathroom afterwards to clean up too. Really good, but really messy.
    <img src="http://s3-media2.ak.yelpcdn.com/bphoto/4onM9PiXkiq4DRuNqvJSrA/l.jpg&quot; width="600">

    1. Robert Emslie Avatar
      Robert Emslie

      Wow, that's almost NSFW.

    2. MVEilenstein Avatar

      Trying to eat that with a plastic fork, too. What a joke.

    3. mallthus Avatar

      I actually used to work for Sonic and part of my role was designing packaging.
      In the hall of "Things That Didn't Go To Market" is a car friendly Chili-Cheese Coney box.
      It was too expensive.

  11. JayP2112 Avatar

    Let's design a "cup" with an itty bitty base and a huge bucket head. Make sure the center of mass makes the tipping point occur at any acceleration faster than a snail or sloth or some other slow animal.
    <img src="http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/654*491/big-gulp.jpg&quot; >

    1. Bryce Womeldurf Avatar

      This cup, combined with the cup holders in my old '97 Sentra that pulled out of the dash, right in front of the stereo, was a recipe for disaster.

    2. Dean Bigglesworth Avatar
      Dean Bigglesworth

      Gimme a liter of cola.

      1. humblejanitor Avatar

        We don't serve that size, Sir.

    3. MVEilenstein Avatar

      There's no denying they're perfect for long trips, though. I used to go to QuikTrip back in the day and get a DoubleQuart. Surprised I don't have diabetes.

      1. JayP2112 Avatar

        Long trips- 6 pack of MtDew and a bag of jerky. That'll get me to Memphis.
        But Taco Bell has that blue MtDew Baja Blast in this same tippy cup. I break my rule for that stuff.

    4. mallthus Avatar

      If you've got a solid base cup holder, these are fine. Anything like this Saab cupholder, and you're doomed.
      <img src="http://0.tqn.com/d/cars/1/0/Y/h/ag_07saab95_chopen.jpg&quot; width=600>

  12. GTXcellent Avatar

    I can't eat anything in a car without spilling all over myself. The instant I try to drive and put food in my mouth at the same time, I turn into a 3 year old – that's why I always have a giant bath towel handy, to wear as a bib.

  13. marmer01 Avatar

    Bonus points for eating while driving a stick in traffic. The best car food is a smallish Burger King bacon cheeseburger; it's hand-sized and the cheese keeps everything together. If it's not enough, order two. But you guys are all reminding my why food isn't allowed in my car (except plain water.)

    1. C³-Cool Cadillac Cat Avatar
      C³-Cool Cadillac Cat

      I understand the NO FOOD rule.
      In my vehicle, water…maybe.
      On road trips, if we're in the car, not the motorcoach, which is like driving a small house…literally…and my wife can go and nuke stuff while we're moving, I limit food to beef jerky, Combos, chewy granola bars, and only soda which has either a screw-on cap or good lid.
      At the same time, my lovely wife and I had mostly figured out eating, while in-motion, on our '91 Honda ST1100 sport-touring motorcycle. On LD rallies, 1,500+ miles in 24 hours, you had to get creative. I customized the tail trunk to accommodate a Camelbak drinking tube, and got one long enough to reach me. Freeze it the night before you leave, sweet tea was good, wrap it up in the Polartec you know you're gonna need at some point, and you have beverages for about 8 hours.
      You learn to balance intake with perspiration quickly, or you don't place highly very often.

  14. mac350 Avatar

    There's so much McDonald's ultra-fine salt on the floor, seats and console of my car it looks like a kilo of cocaine exploded. Is my car going to rust from the inside out?

  15. scroggzilla Avatar

    The Burger King Croissanwich, not so much for the individual foodstuffs that make its greasy whole, but for its packaging which comes in a wrapper, inside a box that cannot be opened with one hand.
    I've had a genuine monkey at the beginning of 2001: A Space Oddity moment trying to get those fuckers opened.

  16. jeepjeff Avatar

    I drive a Jeep Wrangler. If the cupholders weren't mandated, I think Chrysler would have skipped on them, as there's no way to put a full cup of anything in them an not have the beverage go everywhere when you hit the first slightly rough patch of road. (My suspension is awesome, an no, the bumper test indicates the shocks are fine…) Pair that with it being a stick, and I just end up stopping wherever I get food or at a rest stop or park if I brought food.

    1. MVEilenstein Avatar

      My truck has no cup holders – just an unstable Wal-Mart piece on the floor. Since it's a bench seat and a 5-speed, the only drinks I can make work are smaller than 16 ounces, preferably with a closed top.

  17. Batshitbox Avatar

    I am so frikkin' hungry right now… I made it about halfway down the page, it's 10:30 in the morning, and all I want now is a Buffalo Chicken Taco Burger Pizza. With Chili Cheese Curly Fries.
    This is almost as bad as that time me and my housemate made a candle using bacon grease. As soon as we lit it, the whole apartment smelled like bacon, only we didn't have any bacon left to cook! Madness.

    1. FreeMan Avatar

      I think you can get one of those at Geeks Pizzeria in the Village, if they haven't torn it down for all the renovation they're doing.

  18. TurboBrick Avatar

    Ortolan, while driving through the French countryside in my Citroen.

  19. wisc47 Avatar

    I don't allow food in my car, plain and simple. The one time I let someone eat in my car I ended up with a melted M&M on the passenger seat.

  20. Van_Sarockin Avatar

    It's gotta be a Manwich on Wonder Bread.

    1. chrystlubitshi Avatar

      [youtube cCuuGNc96lw http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cCuuGNc96lw youtube]

  21. VolvoNut Avatar

    Whatever the PO of my '91 740 ate, or more accurately, spilled everywhere you can't reach. I am still pulling old french fries and formless hunks of gooey stuff mixed with hair out from under the front seats, in between the rails. I found a befouled cassette, sticky with unknown brownish gunk, labeled "Road Life", just the other day.
    Though they were very appreciative when I mailed them the key to their 850 that I found wedged between the seatbelt holder and the center console. It was sticky too.

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