McDonalds introduces healthier option to Happy Meal menu

McDonald’s has introduced cucumber sticks to their Happy Meal menu. For a limited summer period from May – July, cucumber sticks will replace carrot sticks in all restaurants across the country.

The summer swap comes after new research reveals cucumber is one of the easiest ways to increase children's fruit and veg intake, with almost half of parents naming the popular salad ingredient as a go-to when it comes to achieving their kids’ five a day.

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Over 8 in 10 parents admit they find it difficult to achieve their children’s recommended portions of fruit and vegetables, with 33 percent of parents resorting to hiding it in meals, 21 percent cutting it into funny shapes and 21 percent bribing their children with the promise of pudding in an effort to make them eat it.

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Cucumber sticks were voted among children’s favourite three healthy snacks, alongside carrot sticks and cherry tomatoes, with 24 percent of parents naming cucumber sticks as the easiest to give their children.

Marie Emery, Head of Family Marketing at McDonald’s UK&I explains “We are always working on ways to improve our Happy Meal and the introduction of cucumber sticks is an exciting step in this journey. It can be tricky to get kids to enjoy their recommended fruit and vegetable intake but customers told us cucumber is a popular choice for families. More than a third of children already eat it between 2 and 3 times a week, so we’re delighted to be able to offer it as part of our Happy Meal. We’ll continue to listen to our customers and give them choices that work for their families.”

Fun cucumber facts:

  1. Cucumbers are part of the same plant family as melons, making them a fruit not a vegetable.
  2. A half-cup of sliced cucumbers has 8 calories and more than 10 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin K.
  3. A cucumber is more than 95 percent water.
  4. Cucumber slices over the eyes may help reduce puffiness, thanks to the fruit’s water content and caffeic acid.
  5. The world’s biggest cucumber, grown in southern China, was 67 inches long and weighed 70 kilograms.