Invented in 1995, the unusual design of the McFlurry spoon has continued to baffle soft-serve lovers and everyone with a knack for a perfectly blended, beautifully textured dessert that's sweet but not too sweet.
Fans of the tasty concoction have taken to Twitter many times over the years to ask questions about the strangely hollow and uncannily straw-like spoon — which, upon further investigation, reveals itself to be anything but a straw.
So, why is the McFlurry served with a hollow spoon?
As it turns out, the McFlurry spoon serves a very specific purpose, which necessitates its unconventional shape.
As a video by McDonald's reveals, employees have to attach the top of the spoon to a machine that mixes together the pillowy soft-serve ice cream with a range of equally delectable toppings — like OREO chunks, colorful pieces of M&M's, or the latest offering: delicious pieces of brownie with ooey-gooey caramel — before the McFlurry is served.
McDonald's reportedly aims to cut down on unnecessary waste by using the hollow spoon as a mixing implement, which also streamlines the preparation process. In an alternative — and much more dystopian — scenario, McDonald's employees would either be required to throw away the spoon the McFlurry is mixed with or clean the machine each time it's used.
"The hollow opening on top of the McFlurry spoon serves a very important purpose!," a McDonald's representative told Food & Wine. "After adding our creamy, cool soft-serve and delicious toppings to your McFlurry cup, our crew members attach the spoon to a machine that mixes the creamy vanilla soft-serve and yummy ingredients together, ensuring there is a perfect amount of your favorite topping in each bite."
McDonald's wants to reward everybody who mistook the spoon for a straw.
On Tuesday, May 4, 2021, McDonald's will offer everyone who thought the spoon doubled as a straw (and every other McFlurry fan) a Caramel Brownie McFlurry, free of charge.
All you need to do to take part is download the McDonald's app, scan the offer code, and head over to your nearest branch for a treat — no additional purchase is required.
Between Monday, May 3, 2021, and Sunday, May 9, 2021, everyone who orders a meal worth $15 or more via McDelivery with Uber Eats will also receive a Caramel Brownie McFlurry free of charge. The promotion marks the launch of the brand new dessert.
FYI: The spoon is unlikely to be turned into a straw anytime soon.
McDonald's will likely continue serving McFlurries with the hollow spoon.
As a representative told Food & Wine, pairing the McFlurry with a straw would make it unnecessarily complicated for soft-serve lovers to get a taste of the delicious treat.
"We think our creamy McFlurry is best enjoyed with a spoon. Some of the McFlurry toppings are too large and might pose a safety risk with a straw," the representative told Food & Wine.