Hula Burgers, Kenny Rogers and Froot Loops Pizza
While doing research for both my McRib Podcast and McDonald’s Roast Beef Podcast, McDonald’s Hula Burger kept popping up. A quick search showed it to be just a piece of pineapple on a bun.
Its biggest claim to fame is that it would go head-to-head against the Filet-O-Fish to see who would win McDonald’s “no meat” sandwich crown. The Filet-O-Fish would win handily.
What I discovered.
While searching for images of the Hula Burger, I learned that McDonald’s has not given up on its pineapple dreams.
In the 1980s, they released the Gold ‘n’ Grill Burger in Australia. It was a standard McDonald’s burger with an added ring of pineapple, and it had a great ad campaign with a catchy jingle.
While the Gold ‘n’ Grill came ‘n’ went, the pineapple would return in 2017 as the golden crown that sat atop a chicken sandwich served in Japan and China.
If McDonald’s is looking for what to do next on a burger, they might want to see what is going on over in the world of pizza, and try Froot Loops.
A deeper search for burgers gave me this wonderful ad featuring legendary singer and star of Six Pack, Kenny Rogers, about to bite into a juicy hamburger topped with pineapple.
I was intrigued and quickly discovered that in 1986, Kenny was hired by Dole to be their spokesperson. After years of turning down offers for “commercials for cigarettes, beer and liquor,” Kenny finally decided that the stature and character of Dole seem a good fit for his image.
He would get paid $17 million to sing the praises of Dole and its tasty pineapples for 5 years, appearing in ious print ads as well as commercials.
In a celebration of pineapple passion and corporate synergy, Kenny and Dole released the cookbook, Cooking with Kenny Rogers. Filled with dozen of recipes, not only does it have a recipe for a Super Pineapple Burger, but it will also give you a simple recipe for Sausage Pineapple Pizza on the same page.
An Old Idea?
The idea of putting pineapple on a burger is not new. I have heard people say that the idea might extend back into the 1920s. Right now that is just speculation though, the first mention of a commercially available Pineapple Burger I could find was from 1957. Indiana’s Rancho Grande Drive-In was very excited to be putting a luscious ring of pineapple on their burgers.