Chain Restaurant Employees Shared The Dishes You Should Never Order And I’d Take This Advice Seriously

by 7 months ago
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We all eat at chain restaurants. It’s just part of being an American. Whether it’s Chili’s or Chipotle, Cheesecake Factory or the Longhorn Steakhouse, we’ve all got our favorites (the deep-fried Chicken Crispers at Chili’s are my kryptonite). Because of the high volume of customers, the need to standardize the experience across restaurants thousands of miles apart, and relatively low pay compared to non-chain restaurants, what goes on behind the scenes at chain restaurants isn’t always something we’d like to know about. But we’re here to do just that. Employees at chain restaurants hopped into a AskReddit thread and shared the dishes that customers should never order. I don’t know about you bros but I’m committing all of these to memory.

it’s been a while since I worked there, but don’t get a bourbon steak from Applebee’s. It’s like a black licorice tasting steak. It makes no sense. I’m convinced that every one of those I ever cooked was someone trying it for the first time.
I remember one time we accidentally cooked an extra one, and we offered it to a waitress to eat. She took one bite and immediately spit it out. She kept asking us all night “what did you guys put on it?!” she was convinced that we had put something nasty on it to mess with her. We didn’t do anything to it…that’s just how bad they were.

NEVER order a steak well-done. I guarantee you that the chef will pick the oldest, shittiest meat from the back of the shelf. You’d be better off ordering a burger.

As a prep and grill person for a burrito chain that advertises its lack of GMOs, I would say chicken. A lot of cooks tend to undercook it, so you get some raw pieces. I also suspect it’s where a lot of the outbreaks from years past originated.

This one doesn’t apply specifically to chain restaurants but it’s a very important lesson to remember in the restaurant world.

Seafood specials/buck a shuck oysters.
It means my seafood delivery is tomorrow and I’m trying to get rid of my old stock.
Really most special dishes are either ‘trying a new dish to see if it should go on the menu or not’ or ‘I’m trying to get you to buy this product before I have to throw it out.’

I worked at Denny’s for years. Everything comes frozen (even the avocados, which are then microwaved,) the gravy is powder stirred into boiling water, nacho meat microwaved. Store to store can vary from cleanliness, but at mine, I suggest avoiding the scrambled eggs, nachos, corn hash, sausage, French toast and waffles (especially the wheat or whatever custom mix they have.) I occasionally glanced at the menus and was surprised at how much they charge.

Well if you’re health conscious or counting calories, everything from Cheesecake Factory is fucking awful. Same with the bloomin onion at Outback Steakhouse. I’ve seen people order that as an appetizer and eat that alone. That shit is something like 3000 calories and 6000mg of sodium.

At McDonald’s just say you want a fish filet cooked to order. It will take ~5 more minutes but worth it compared to the filet that has been in the heated cabinet for hours.

Pretty sure they don’t sell it anymore, and it should be self-explanatory, but the shrimp basket from Dairy Queen.

DaFuzzyManPeach 2622 points 13 days ago*
Ice almost everywhere. Unless you’ve seen people take apart the ice machine and scrub the whole thing out, there is definitely mold in those.

Order what a place is known for. I used to work at an Italian Beef place (not Portillo’s but similar) and the beef sandwiches we served contained Italian beef cooked at another location and dropped off daily, giardiniera and peppers we prepped and cooked ourselves, bread delivered daily… quality food. Fresh.
Then, we had a BBQ rib sandwich. A box of them came frozen, we warmed em up and sent em out. Same thing with a fried steak sandwich we had. It was a beef place, just order the beef!

Anything from Applebee’s. It’s all cooked in the microwave, never fresh.

The Cheesecake Factory only uses a microwave for one dish – the Apple Crisp. In fact, the only microwave in the whole restaurant will be behind the counter in the bakery.

Pinkberry – The raspberries were usually filled with bees or moldy, but that was the distributor’s fault.

Going to be honest here, I didn’t realize TGI Fridays still existed.

Basically anything from Fridays. It’s almost all frozen, your lobster, soup, veggies – all microwaved. If any of your food isn’t hot enough, microwave. Plus if you order fries, anyone who walks through the kitchen and sees the plate on expo probably ate a good portion of them.
At my restaurant, they kept cooked and raw meat literally right next to each other but wondered why people complained about getting sick. All around distasteful.
Also, anything “vegetarian” actually isn’t. All the soups have meat or meat bases in them.
And 85% of the time your food has been touched by hands that likely weren’t recently washed. Plating the food before it’s served means one of the staff touched it with bare hands because they’re too lazy to use gloves. I never ate anything there when I worked there.

Talking about the McRib

It’s literally a preformed slab of processed meat that sits in a trough of BBQ sauce waiting for someone to order it. It usually sits in the heat cabinet longer than most of the other products.

Check the menu, if there is an item used only in one dish, chances are it’s not as fresh as the rest of the menu.

Worked at Taco Bell for way too long. Obviously nothing is top of the line, but I never ate anything with beans or red sauce. They sit out, get all nasty and crusty, and then the workers just pour hot water in it. By the end of the day it’s just recycled crusties. The beans aren’t as bad because they go through more, but that red sauce is disgusting.
Red sauce is in the Mexican pizzas, burrito supremes , bean burritos, etc. Avoid that shit
EDIT: the red sauce is not in the Mexican pizzas, but there is pizza sauce. If anything, this stuff is worse because they only use it for the pizzas. Grows a thick crust throughout the day

Frappes from Starbucks. Unless that’s the ONLY thing you’re consuming for the entire day.
SO much sugar and the calorie content is insane.

Most of the food at Panda Express is kept in a more sanitary environment than you would expect but I wouldn’t get the mixed veggies, fairly often we would get shipments of carrots that were clearly bad, like gooey and moldy but I was told to cut around the gross parts and then the carrots still got used. Also the blancher rarely gets cleaned or properly and gets used to clean off the wok ladles after every other dish gets made so there’s usually debris from other dishes just sitting in the water

Used to work for Pizza Hut. I suggest ordering from anyone else.

I worked in the deli at a Winn-Dixie for a few years when I was younger. (Winn Dixie is a grocery store in the south). We sold an Antipasto salad that was just made up of the ends of all the lunchmeats and cheeses we didn’t sell. They were usually expired, but we cut them up in cubes, and cover them in Italian dressing. I never tried it, but it sounds disgusting. People loved it though.
On a related note, at Winn-Dixie, after you open a new package of lunch meat, you have 6 days before the rest of it has to be thrown out. We would label it with a sticker, and wrap it in saran wrap every time we used it. Every night, we would go through the case, and pull the ones that went past their date. The manager would come in in the morning, and smell them. If she though they smelled ok, she would put a new sticker, and put tehm in the case for another 6 days.

Don’t order housemade chili or gumbo.
It’s just the meats we could sell in the last week, ground up and thrown into a pot with beans and spices to disguise the fact that the meat’s a little wonky.

I grew up in a restaurant family, this was law whenever we’d go out to eat on a Sunday/Monday. It’s not necessarily true in a major city like New York where deliveries come in every day. But, if you’re in rural anywhere this is an excellent rule to abide by.

I have heard many chefs saying not to order the fish on a Monday, as they get their last fish order of the week on Friday and they don’t get a new one till Tuesday

Well, bros, that wraps up the coverage from my end but if you want to keep on reading these AskReddit stories you can CLICK HERE to see that thread in full! As always, you can drop your story/ideas/thoughts in the comment section down below.

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