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Can You Eat McDonald’s Burgers the Next Day? (We Tried it)

Can You Eat McDonald’s Burgers the Next Day? (We Tried it)

We’ve probably all eaten some leftover McDonald’s Burgers.

You may have bought a few too many and then decided to eat the rest later that day or the next. Or maybe you served McDonald’s burgers at your kid’s birthday party and ended up with a couple of burgers left uneaten.

While they won’t taste as good, you can definitely eat McDonald’s burgers the next day if you store them properly. You can keep them in the fridge for about one day. You can then either eat them cold or reheat them.

So, what to do with those leftover burgers? Can you keep them in the fridge, eat them the next day, or reheat them?

If you want to know if McDonald’s burgers are actually still edible the next day, how long they can sit out, and if you can microwave them, all you have to do is keep reading!

Are McDonald’s Burgers Still Good the Next Day?

a man eating a mcdonald's big mac at home
My husband Max eating a McDonald’s burger

As we have two small kids, we sometimes buy some take-out food at McD’s and eat it at home. As the little ones don’t eat all that much, we’ve kept both hamburgers, cheeseburgers, and Big Macs overnight in the fridge and ate them the next day.

Our verdict? While they are certainly still edible and safe to eat if you store them properly, they are not very tasty anymore!

True, McDonald’s burgers aren’t exactly gourmet food, to begin with. But eating them the next day is something other than what I’d recommend.

They will be either very soggy or very dry, and the stuff that’s in them, be it salad, cheese, onions, or those questionable pickles, kind of melts into the meat and bun, turning your burger into a gooey mess.

They also lose most of their flavor so that the burger will taste like paper or, well, nothing at all, really.

Again, McD’s burgers don’t taste all that amazing anyway, but a freshly made burger at the restaurant can still taste pretty decent!

A McDonald’s burger that’s one day old will give you a pretty poor food experience! That’s my experience, anyway.

But sometimes, you just want to eat that burger regardless of how it tastes! Maybe you’re super hungry, or you just don’t want to waste food that’s still edible!

So, how do you handle the burgers the best way, and how should you store them?

How Long Can You Keep McDonald’s Burgers in the Fridge?

a mcdonald's big mac being kept in the fridge

While you can keep hamburgers and ground beef in the fridge for up to two days, McDonald’s burgers generally only make it one day in the refrigerator.

Again, the combination of ingredients of these burgers makes them unfit to be stored in the fridge for several days.

We have experienced this with Big Macs especially, as they have a lot of dressing and salad in them.

The longer you store them in the fridge, the soggier those Big Macs will get! Especially if you keep them in their original McDonald’s packaging.

Hence, 24 hours in the fridge is the maximum amount of time I’d advise you to keep them. And that’s stretching it already!

Keeping them in the fridge for just a few hours is probably the better choice! So if you’ve bought them for lunch, try to finish them for dinner the same day.

How Long Can McDonald’s Burgers Sit Out?

Cooked ground beef and burgers should only sit at room temperature for a maximum of 2 hours. This goes for any McDonald’s burger as well!

These burgers might be a quick and convenient fast food, but if left outside for too long, they can turn into the perfect breeding ground for bacteria causing foodborne illnesses. 

For temperature environments of 90°F and above, that time window shrinks to just one hour. 

I can stress this enough; do not eat burgers (or any food, for that matter) that have been left outside for hours and hours!

All kinds of bacteria, pathogens, and toxins can start to grow on them, and the last thing you want is to get a severe case of food poisoning from eating a Big Mac. 

So if you have some McD’s burgers left in the kitchen after a party or a game, don’t take any chances and toss them away! It’s not worth taking the risk. 

Can You Eat a McDonald’s Burger That Has Been Sitting Out Overnight?

The section above already answers this question, but as I see it popping up online, I wanted to answer it separately.

Do not, under any circumstances, eat a McDonald’s burger that has been sitting out overnight!

It might look okay, and it might look enticing to you when you wake up (after a long night of partying, for example), but trust me, after so many hours at room temperature, there’ll be plenty of bacteria activity going on in and on that Big Mac.

Toss it without any second thoughts, and either make a decent breakfast or head out and get a fresh burger!

Can You Eat McDonald’s Burgers Cold?

a cold Mcdonald's Big Mac

You can certainly eat any McDonald’s burger cold if you like. Let’s be honest; if you’re having some take-out, by the time you get home, most of the time, your burgers will already be cold anyway!

And so, they can certainly be eaten cold.

Whether they taste better or worse, cold or warm, is a very subjective matter. Personally, I prefer my McD’s burgers to be as warm as possible. I just don’t like their taste when they’ve cooled down.

If you eat them cold or cooled down, just remember the 2-hour rule I mentioned above! Don’t let them sit out for too long, as harmful bacteria can start to grow on them.

Can You Reheat McDonald’s Burgers?

But what if you, like me, don’t like to eat your McDonald’s burgers cold? Can you reheat them? You definitely can! And if you do it properly, they can actually taste pretty decently!

There are two options to reheat your McDonald’s burgers. You can either put them in the oven or the microwave.

While the oven generally produces better results for the burger patty, it often dries out the bun too much.

On the other hand, putting your burger in the microwave as is tends to result in a soggy burger bun!

But there is a neat trick to D-tour this problem. Keep reading if you want to find out more!

How to Microwave McDonald’s Burgers?

Depending on how warm you want your burger to be, you can microwave your McDonald’s burger for 30 to 60 seconds.

The trick is to leave the paper on your burger when you microwave it! This will keep the patty fresh and juicy and prevent the bun from getting soggy.

It’s a simple yet smart hack to get the most out of your reheated McD’s burger.

Unfortunately, this will only work with ordinary ham and cheeseburgers.

Big Macs, fish, or chicken burgers, which typically contain a lot of dressing and salad, won’t microwave very well.

Additionally, they don’t come wrapped in the needed paper either, so the trick won’t work with them.

But for those basic burgers, it’s a noticeable improvement.

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