Christmastime is upon us once again, and so are all the tasty treats that this time of year inspires. Along with your aunts. mothers, and grandparents heading to the kitchen to prepare those baked treats, savory delights, and festive drinks, fast food restaurants across the country are modifying their menus to cater to those in the holiday spirit. There are some classic favorites and a few brand new items we’ve never seen before.
If you’re in for something to take to the holiday party or home to the kids for the last day before the break, here are some of the best:
Krispy Kreme Gingerbread Glazed Donuts (December 12 only!)
Krispy Kreme has recently dabbled in switching up its dough recipe or glaze recipe for special releases, but on National Gingerbread House Day (December 12), the participating restaurants will switch up both for a whole day! The new donut features fried gingerbread dough spiced with cinnamon and ginger and covered in a warm gingerbread molasses glaze. This already sounds way better than the cold, hard gingerbread that has undoubtedly passed through several sticky fingers before reaching your plate.
McDonald’s Holiday Pies
An oldie but a goodie, McDonald’s is bringing back their holiday pies. The hot apple pie crust is replaced with a sugar cookie-like crust, bedazzled with confetti, and the pie is filled with vanilla custard. This version of the holiday pie will only be available at some locations as others have opted (understandably…vanilla custard with sprinkles???) for a strawberry and creme pie.
Starbucks Christmas Tree Frappuccino
Now this is cool (pun intended). Starbucks is offering a green Christmas Tree Frappuccino this holiday season that actually looks like a Christmas tree! The fully-fluffed Christmas tree in a cup is a blend of mocha and peppermint at the bottom (the trunk), topped with matcha-infused whipped cream (the tree), a caramel drizzle (tinsel), candied cranberries (ornaments), and a strawberry topper (the star). This frap sounds neat to drink, or just to take fun Instagram pictures.
Starbucks Holiday Frappuccinos
Starbucks has a drink for just about every holiday, but Christmas is where they just go wild. In yet another holiday offering, along with its Christmas Tree Frappuccino and Christmas Blend coffee beans and hot coffee, Starbucks is offering three festive Frappuccino flavors: chestnut praline, peppermint, and caramel brûlée. Fraps are arguably one of the best menu items for their mix of sweetness and strong coffee flavoring, and these holiday flavors have only sweetened and already sweet deal.
Sonic Holiday Mint Master Shake
Sonic is the king of crazy cool drinks and its holiday offering lives up to the title. The Holiday Mint Master Shake is a thick, creamy blend of mint flavor and Oreo pieces finished with a whipped topping. This holiday drink sounds like it just might be as epic as its name.
Shake Shack Holiday Shake Trio
Naturally, Shake Shack is throwing its Santa hat in the ring with a new holiday shake trio. Customers can celebrate the 2017 holiday season with their choice of frozen hot cocoa (hot chocolate frozen custard topped with whipped cream and a chocolate chip marshmallow), a Christmas cookie shake (sugar cookie frozen custard topped with whipped cream, crumbled shortbread and red and green sprinkles), or a chocolate peppermint shake (chocolate frozen custard blended with peppermint and topped with whipped cream and chocolate peppermint candy crumbles).
Popeye’s Cajun Turkeys
A diversion from the sweet treats, Popeye’s is selling cajun turkeys just for the holiday season. This a most appropriate choice for the Louisiana-based chicken restaurant. The 9 to 13 pound turkeys are seasoned with Louisiana seasonings then roasted and flash-fried for a crispy exterior. Arguably one of the most expensive holiday fast food offerings, the birds cost about $40 and you have to reserve them ahead of time at a participating restaurant. Luckily, this handy locator shows a tiny turkey icon next to the ones where you’ll find the fried birds, so you can save yourself some time.
Many people associate the holidays with slaving over a hot stove, but this year, when it comes to easy comfort food, fast food restaurants are sleigh-ing the holiday season.