McGriddles or Death: The Permanent Breakfast Bliss That Singapore Deserves
All images by Nathan Koh for RICE Media unless stated otherwise.

We take the McGriddles for granted.

Once a staple on McDonald’s breakfast menu, it was discontinued in October 2014. Why? McDonald’s refreshes their menu from time to time, according to a spokesperson. 

The McGriddles has been re-released in Singapore for the 10th time over the past five years, each time to much fanfare. And we keep falling for this on-again, off-again relationship.

Most Singaporeans—me included—can’t get enough of the breakfast sandwich. Numerous comments plaster McDonald’s Facebook posts over the years, asking them to bring it back to their regular breakfast menu.

If McDonald’s could bring back the Quarter Pounder, why can’t they do the same for the McGriddles?

Image: Facebook screengrab

Hitting the Sweet (and Savoury) Spot

Some may baulk at the McGriddle’s blend of sweet and savoury, but as Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus would say, you get the best of both worlds.

The soft, syrupy, moist, bouncy pancake buns. The egg, stacked on a savoury sausage patty. The melted sliced cheese, which usually gets stuck on the paper wrapping.

Now, the closest option Singaporeans have all year round is to assemble their own makeshift McGriddles from the components of McDonald’s Breakfast Deluxe. This, however, costs about $2 more. And there’s no cheese too! 

Personally, there’s also the nostalgia factor. The McGriddles reminds me of simpler times—the feeling of starting a (probably) horrible school day on the right foot with the right food.

It was a regular item on the breakfast menu when I was in secondary school. Every Wednesday, I woke up 30 minutes earlier to get the McGriddles before reporting for morning assembly. Before the hectic rush of the school day, I’d slowly enjoy my McGriddles while I walked to school.

Time passed; my McGriddles breakfast remained a constant. At least until it was discontinued.


Five Weeks of McDonald’s Bliss

When I missed the previous McGriddles release in March this year, I lived the following months with nutritional regret. After all, we only get the McGriddles twice a year—once around February or March and again around the mid-year mark.

Well, it’s back again. This is my redemption.

Since its re-release on July 27, I’ve had the Sausage McGriddles with Egg for four consecutive breakfasts. Having the McGriddles every day isn’t for everyone. But I’m just doing me.

I have to make the most out of the short time it’ll be here. No one really knows how long the McGriddles will be available. The official line we’re usually fed is that it’s here “for a limited time only”. Essentially, it comes and goes whenever McDonald’s corporate office decides.

Maybe this is by design. Amid all this uncertainty, diehard McGriddles fans like me jump at the chance to binge on it whenever it’s available. 

On my second visit to McDonald’s, before the manager could ask me if I wanted chilli or ketchup, I asked when this McGriddles run would end.

“Until next month, around five weeks.” 

“Five weeks only?” I thought to myself as I said thank you and left. Five weeks is not enough. May I suggest, perhaps, all year round, like it used to be?

There are seasonal classics such as the Prosperity Burger, Samurai Burger, Seaweed Shaker Fries, and Twister Fries, but the McGriddles doesn’t belong with them. It belongs on the regular menu with the greats, like the McSpicy and Quarter Pounder.


Why So Kiasu

If we’re looking at it from a business perspective, though, making the McGriddles a biannual treat has its perks for the fast-food giant.

McDonald’s choosing to put the McGriddles up as a seasonal item definitely pulls in crowds. Occasional merch drops add to the hype. 

I was contemplating if I should line up at McDonald’s Kallang for their new McGriddles hoodie. But remembering how Singaporeans lined up overnight for the previous hoodie release in 2019, I expected this to be no different. A line was formed by 8 PM the day before, with almost 200 people by 3:30 AM.

Video: @daniellelinnie / TikTok

Logistically, McDonald’s could probably offer the McGriddles permanently. After all, all its ingredients are already used in its other breakfast dishes. 

So why is it withholding this blissful breakfast from us? 

Maybe Singaporeans’ kiasu mindset is to be blamed. An engineered shortage is a surefire way to light a fire under Singaporeans and get them to buy into McGriddles mania.

It’s common to see long queues during an opening of a new restaurant or the launch of a new product. But the kiasu-ness is enhanced when limited time becomes part of the equation. McDonald’s employs scarcity to play us like a fiddle. Absence does make the heart grow fonder.


Bring McGriddles Back (Permanently)

Let me speak on behalf of fellow fans: Singaporeans are tired of the McGriddles leaving and returning like an emotionally unavailable parent. It’s a (phenomenally first-world) tragedy that we cannot have the McGriddles whenever we want. The lack of the McGriddles gives Singaporeans something else to complain about.

The McGriddles hold a special place in the hearts of many Singaporeans. Of course, there is the latter, who prefers eating the hard and dry (some would say crispy, but not me) buns of the McMuffin, Big Breakfast and Breakfast Deluxe.

Even if you don’t like the McGriddles, it is a fact that Singaporeans live on exclusives. Requesting the government for a SingPass-only concert, lining up for donuts, and even having merchandise with meals to promote sales—it pulls us away from the realities of our fast-paced lives.

So much so that Singaporeans are willing to line up for 12 hours for a hoodie or even eat the McGriddles daily.

Year after year, Singaporeans have shown their support for the McGriddles. We stayed loyal to the breakfast dish, even when we didn’t know when it’d return. Perhaps one day, we’ll be rewarded.

Singaporeans are ready for the McGriddles to make its glorious return to McDonald’s breakfast menu permanently. I’ll be the first in line when it does.

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