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McDonald's Big Mac Copycat Recipe
McDonald's Big Mac
By Todd Wilbur

Recipe Type: Sandwich
Calories: 560
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Recipe Rating: 4.8 (44 reviews)

Brothers Dick and Mac McDonald opened the first McDonald's drive-in restaurant in 1948, in San Bernardino, California. When the brothers began to order an increasing amount of restaurant equipment for their growing business, they aroused the curiosity of milk-machine salesman Ray Kroc. Kroc befriended the brothers and became a franchising agent for the company that same year, opening his first McDonald's in Des Plaines, Illinois. Kroc later founded the hugely successful McDonald's Corporation and perfected the fast-food system that came to be studied and duplicated by other chains over the years. The first day Kroc's cash register rang up $366.12. Today the company racks up about $50 million a day in sales in more than 12,000 outlets worldwide, and for the past ten years a new store has opened somewhere around the world an average of every fifteen hours. The double-decker Big Mac was introduced in 1968, the brain-child of a local franchisee. It is now the world's most popular hamburger and it is super easy to duplicate at home. You can use Kraft Thousand Island dressing for the special sauce, or just follow the link in the ingredients list to another recipe for cloning the special sauce from scratch.

Source: "Top Secret Recipes" by Todd Wilbur.

For a live demonstration of this classic clone recipe, check out this video.

1 sesame-seed hamburger bun
half of an additional hamburger bun
1/4 pound ground beef
dash salt
1 tablespoon Big Mac Special Sauce (see Tidbits)
1 teaspoon finely diced onion
1/2 cup chopped lettuce
1 slice American cheese
2 to 3 dill pickle slices

1. With a serrated knife, cut the top off the extra bun half, leaving about a 3/4-inch-thick slice. This will be the middle bun of your sandwich

2. Place the three bun halves on a hot pan or griddle, face down, and toast them to a light brown. Set aside, but keep the pan hot.

3. Divide the ground beef in half and press into two thin patties slightly larger than the bun.

4. Cook the patties in the hot pan over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Salt and pepper lightly.

Build the burger in the following stacking order from the bottom up:

bottom bun
half of Big Mac Special Sauce*
half of onion
half of lettuce
American cheese
beef patty
middle bun
remainder of Big Mac Special Sauce*
remainder of onion
remainder of lettuce
pickle slices 
beef patty
top bun

Makes 1 hamburger.


Click here for Todd's clone of the Big Mac Special Sauce.

Perfect Clone
Suzi H  
Submitted on: 05/30/16
My pet peeve is restaurants that change or remove my favorite item from their menu. This has happened a lot, so I decided to find a clone for the Big Mac. We had this last night and it was perfection! We both loved the results, and I'm off to the store to buy more ground beef this morning! Todd, If you can clone those greasy Jack in the Box tacos, I'd be forever grateful!
Submitted on: 02/03/16
Better than a proper Big Mac
Big Mac without the tummy pain!
Submitted on: 01/21/16
I like a few others suffer from stomach pains after any form of McDonalds burger, not sure what causes it but it means I very rarely eat them, even though I love a good dirty burger! This recipe is fantastic, I can't believe how good the patties themselves were using just plain 5% fat ground beef. I used Thousand Island dressing but next time will make it complete. Without doubt the best burger I've ever had!
I Love Big Macs
Submitted on: 09/04/15
Usually, when we make burgers at home, it's the standard beef and BLT with cheese. I was craving a Big Mac and Googled it, which took me here. This is the only way I'm having a burger at home anymore! The only changes I made was I added bacon, an extra slice of cheese and a dollop of sauce to the top bun. AWESOME!!!!!
Been making this for years
Submitted on: 04/13/15
And it is better than the Big Mac. Feeling sorry for the lads who think it is not better...but I like my food fresh, and think that if McDonalds made their stuff with better quality ingredients and the sandwiches were fresh, this would be it.
Submitted on: 04/04/15
This burger taste better than a Mc Donald's burgers! My new favorite burger to make at home!
Almost perfect
Submitted on: 03/29/15
I made it just like this, however, I added 1/4 tsp. onion powder, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp. paprika. It tastes exactly the same as Mcdonalds!
Perfect Sauce
BoB Guzinya  
Submitted on: 02/27/15
This is spot on, I added 1/2 teaspoon of mustard powder, 1/2 teaspoon of paprika and 1 teaspoon of garlic powder.... everything else was fine and I used the dried minced onions from the spice section of the market, but with these you really need to let it sit 24hours or more.
To Karen
Submitted on: 12/22/14
To the reviewer below named Karen who gets stomach aches after eating McDonald's Big Mac, I always got stomach cramps & diarrhea after eating McDonalds burgers as well. I've heard it's because they keep their patties in a warming drawer where they get exposed to bacteria. Who knows...But without fail I would get stomach aches after eating at McDonalds. Blech!
Submitted on: 08/11/14
As a child Big Mac's were always my favorite. Sometimes I crave them, but at my age of 50 years old now...every time I eat one I get the worst stomach ache. Now, I can make my own. Delicious! And no stomach ache- thanks
Submitted on: 03/20/14
Taste exactly like Big Mac. Simply super!!!
Big Mac Sauce
Submitted on: 02/23/14
Wow after seeing how many calories this burger has I kept looking for other recipes, but wanted to know how they make that all famous sauce. Now that I know how to make it, oh Good Grief will be putting this sauce on everything.
Submitted on: 12/06/13
Made it today and it was as good as a Big Mac. The dressing is a tad different than an actual Big Mac but not too noticeably so.
bianca bridgewater  
Submitted on: 10/14/13
This burger was amazing -it may even be better than mcdonaolds .maybe that's just because its defintely healthier
Mc Donald's Onions
Sue Koutalis  
Submitted on: 08/05/13
I found out the trick to copying Mc D's...Dehydrated (rehydrate) onions..A friend worked there and told me that!!
Adam Smith  
Submitted on: 06/08/12
This tasted exactly like the real deal. Nice Job.
Jamie L.  
Submitted on: 06/05/12
This is hilarious - I just made a Big Mac at home! Smelled and tasted so much like the real thing, but I didn't have to drive 2 hours to get it!
Neil Klotz  
Submitted on: 04/05/12
I made these with my young son and it was a great success. As we were assembling the burgers, the smell became more and more familiar. Thanks!
James L.  
Submitted on: 12/28/11
Todd you really nailed it. My cousin Tried it and he said it was better than the original fast food version. thanks for your help!
Spot On
Catherine R.  
Submitted on: 12/04/11
I made this tonight for dinner. My husband is the hardest person to please when it comes to food. This was a hit. He said it was so close to the real thing and scarfed it down in like a minute flat. I think it actually tasted better than the real thing b/c it was fresh. I added a sprinkle of ground flax to each burger to make it a little healthier, but you couldn't taste that it was there.
Andrew Shulman  
Submitted on: 10/22/11
I've made these several times, and they always come out perfect. I've made a bunch at once for dinner for my family, and everyone loved them. A lot of my friends said they were even better than mcdonald's (i guess because of the lack of grease). I would recommend making the patties a good amount bigger than the bun, since they shrink A LOT when you cook them. Overall though, a perfect clone.
natasha Kerr  
Submitted on: 03/02/11
I refuse to eat at McDonald's anymore, haven't in 23 years because everything tastes the same. My husband printed this off for me to try because I LOVE testing your recipes and it was TO DIE FOR!!! It was better than an actual Big Mac!!!! I will eat this from now on!!
Submitted on: 03/02/10
Amazing...a true Big Mac made at home. Unbelievable!
Submitted on: 05/09/09
Great Job! I love Big Macs and I love being able to make them at home now! Thanks!
Submitted on: 04/30/09
Had never tried a big mac until I tried this recipe and now I am addicted to them! Can anyone help me out I'm in Australia and we don't have creamy french dressing so I am using liquid french salad dressing? - Tastes amazing still but am I using the correct substitute? Thanks
Rafael Dubena  
Submitted on: 04/05/09
This is just like the real one! My whole family loved it and I made it in Brazil! Very good, thank you!
Submitted on: 03/15/09
Amazingly Accurate! I used two 8-ounce burgers instead of the directed. I also used the hamburger buns I already had, but the taste and saucetasted just like the real thing!
Submitted on: 02/15/09
This is a fantastic recipe clone. You probably would not be reading this if you were not already a Big Mac fan. So here we go. Follow the recipe EXACTLY. The only thing I would recommend is using "Kraft Select American Cheese Slices" It is closer in flavor to the original cheese used back in the 70s. The construction really is critical, do it just as Todd instructs. The special Big Mac sauce is also very important, take the time to prepare the cloned recipe for that also, (a little further down the recipes page) It is well worth the effort. I have been a Big Mac fan for almost 40 years, and now I can make 'em at home! Thanks Todd, you're the man.
Submitted on: 09/05/08
Perfect!!! Love these! And what's best about them (besides their taste) is that they don't have the Trans Fat that you get at Mc Donald's! Oh - one thing we changed about them is increased each patty to be 3oz instead of 2, since the buns at the store are larger than those ad Mc Donald's. We also use dill pickle relish instead of sweet relish in the dressing.
Submitted on: 07/25/08
I made a batch of these when some friends came over. They loved them! They liked that they tasted like big macs but were right off the grill and weren't luke warm like Mcdonald's serves them.
Submitted on: 05/27/08
This recipe is fantastic!There is a difference in the taste and texture though and I couldn't quite put my finger on it til I realized the burger I had just made had MINIMAL preservatives and MINIMAL fat - That's the difference! My husband is now addicted to them and won't eat any other burger
Submitted on: 02/09/08
I had a family cookout awhile ago,and I made 20 of these burgers. They all said they are better than the real Big Mac!!!! From now on they insist I make them at all cookouts.
Submitted on: 01/27/08
I dont think it was as good as the real thing but it was one of the best homemade burgers I've ever had.
Submitted on: 11/01/07
It is so easy to follow!! I love it!
Submitted on: 11/01/07
Sounds like a good way to make a classic. Although this fella Michael down here is a weirdo. Doubtful that he even has a kid, or a wife for that matter.
Submitted on: 10/17/07
i made this for my family and we all loved it..it was a huge hit..i asked my hubby on a scale from 1-5..(5 being the highest) what would he rate it...he gave it a 4...i did as well..he said u did a good job on the sauce and asked me to make it with all of our hamburgers from now on...
Submitted on: 10/04/07
I just made 5 of them for my husband (skinny bottomless pit) He absolutely loved them and said they were much better than the Big Macs from the past and present..I added one more slice of cheese and one more set of pickles and put the sauce on all 3 bun tops...it was a nice fat burger...Thanks so much!! :)
Submitted on: 09/30/07
This was great!!!
Submitted on: 09/29/07
What a poor excuse for a recipe. Heck, my kid can make this one. Give us a break Todd...no wonder this was a freebie. I bet you won't even show this as a comment...coward.
Russell C.  
Submitted on: 09/29/07
Great clone of an American favorite. I used lean ground beef to make them healthier than the original. The whole family enjoyed them and we saved money too.
Submitted on: 09/26/07
Great! Just like McDonald's...I ate five already! The sauce is perfect!
Submitted on: 09/25/07
This recipe is FAR superior to the actual McDonalds burger...which I think are vile and disgusting. Haven't eaten McDonalds in years and never will again. The McDonalds burger is thinner, greaser and the beef is cut with something...probably soy.
Submitted on: 09/25/07
This recipe rocks, especially with the kids.
Submitted on: 09/25/07
Fantastic recipe. Easy to follow directions.