Food Berkeley Park

When you imagine ordering “off the menu,” you probably think of pricey restaurants where your wish is their command—not fast-food spots. But plenty of chains offer secret menu items that in-the-know customers can order. In fact, In-N-Out Burger’s covert options became so popular that they now print a special “Not-So-Secret” menu online. To learn about hush-hush items—some cool, others surprising and a few downright scary––that you can ask for at places like Arby’s and Long John Silver’s, keep reading.

Chipotle

Store policy at this fast-food joint says that employees will whip up anything you’d like—as long as they have the ingredients on hand. So if you aren’t in the mood for a burrito or a trio of tacos, you can request nachos, a quesadilla, a taco salad or whatever other Mexican creation you can dream up.


Subway

Long before Subway helped Jared lose 245 pounds, the sandwich chain had a less-than-healthy selection on their menu. Although the “pizza sub” (toasted with cheese, tomato sauce and pepperoni) was axed from the menu, employees will still make the Italian-inspired sandwich upon request.

Fatburger

Part-time vegetarian? Hate beef? Whatever your reason, the Fatburger chain has you covered. It’s not on the menu, but ask for a “Hyprocrite,” and you’ll be served a true contradiction on a bun: a veggie burger topped with bacon.

Wendy’s

True meat lovers know the secret to a serious burger fix: Wendy’s “Grand Slam” or “Home Run.” If their Triple Stack just isn’t enough for you, this unadvertised sandwich features four—yes, four—meat patties.

See how one blogger transformed 10 fastfood items into fancy gourmet dishes.


McDonald’s

It’s not printed on their menu, but if you find yourself with a hankering for a trio of milkshake flavors, many McDonald’s restaurants will sell you a “Neapolitan.” Like the ice cream, this milkshake features layers of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry shakes in one cup. In the mood for some diner food? You can also order Mickey D’s secret grilled cheese, which features slices of cheese in a hamburger bun, grilled.

Long John Silver’s

Nothing goes better with fried fish than…fried crumbs? That’s right, Long John Silver’s aficionados will tell you to ask for a side of “crumbs” to complement your meal. It’s essentially a box of fried breading that’s fallen off pieces of fish or chicken. The best part? It’s free!

Arby’s

Looking to add a little pizzazz to your order of fries? At Arby’s you can ask for an order of “wet fries” and they’ll serve you up a batch of curly fries with a side of Cheddar cheese sauce for dipping. But it doesn’t stop there: Other popular dipping sauces for fries include the chain’s classic Arby’s Sauce and the horseradish-flavored Horsey Sauce.

Taco Bell

If you’re looking to supplement your Mexican fare with something extra special, try asking for green chili sauce at your local Taco Bell. If the restaurant has it on hand, they’ll give you a side of the zesty sauce, which devotees go crazy for. And, if you were a fan of the now discontinued Cheesy Gordita Crunch, certain locations will still make the taco-gordita hybrid for you, provided they have all the fixings.

Fast Food 1

    • Panda Express, Southern California’s King of Fast Food Chinese, plans to introduce “Kobari” beef to its menu on Wednesday, Sept. 22.  Cost: $2.90 for a regular entree.
    • Some Islands Restaurants are serving “lighter fare” grilled fish tacos. Available in Manhattan Beach, Torrance, Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, Irvine, and Porter Ranch.
    • Del Taco introduced its first American-style breakfast menu with the addition of three biscuit breakfast sandwiches in early September. The choices include: a Sausage Biscuit Sandwich (99 cents);  Sausage, Egg and Cheese biscuit and a Bacon, Egg and Cheese biscuit. The latter two cost $1.89. But for a limited time only, you can buy both for $3 at restaurants.
    • Taco Bell introduced Cantina Tacos Aug. 2. Choices: $1.49 for the Premium Fire-Grilled Chicken, Premium Cut Carne Asada Steak or Carnitas Shredded Pork; $2.79 for the 2 tacos any choice; and $4.99 for the a combo of 2 tacos of choice with a 30 oz. drink
    • Dairy Queen added a Mini Blizzard to its menu in early August. Cost: $1.99 and $2.49, depending the market, for a 6-7 ounce treat. That’s about half the size of a 12-ounce small Blizzard.
    • For a limited time through Aug. 29, Sonic restaurants are offering Footlong Quarter Pound Coney for $2.99.
    • Every Wednesday, Berkeley Dog in Mission Viejo is offering a $1.99 frankfurter. 25522 Marguerite Parkway #101, Mission Viejo.
    • The Counter is introducing Signature Burgers in a Bowl. The chain now offers burgers without the bun. The Counter Cobb, Southwestern, Mediterranean, Asian Veggie and Backyard Barbeque Signature Burgers are now available in a bowl ranging from $8.50-$11.50.
    • Johnny Rockets is promoting three Rocket Melts. The restaurant offers classic Patty Melt ($6.79), Tuna Melt ($6.49) or the BBQ Chicken Bacon Melt ($7.00) served on rye, wheat, homestyle white or sourdough bread.
    • Jack in the Box is offering two new items for the summer. For a limited time participating restaurants will have the Really Big Chicken Sandwich Combo, which features two breaded chicken patties, lettuce, tomato, bacon, Swiss-style cheese and mayo-onion sauce served on a jumbo bakery bun, along with a small drink and curly fries for $3.99. Also offered is the Mini Funnel Cake, sprinkled with powdered sugar for $1.
    • Pat and Oscar’s has a new spinach and bacon salad for the summer. The salad features grape tomatoes, red onions, bacon bits, hard-boiled eggs and bleu cheese crumbles, all tossed in a sweet bacon dressing. It is available in three sizes: small ($8.99), medium ($11.99) and large ($14.99).
    • Weinerschnitzel is offering its Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Freezee now through Oct. 2 for $2.89. The treat is a combination of chocolate chip cookie dough bites and soft serve topped with Tastee-Freez’s signature chocolate cone dip.
    • Mimi’s Cafe launched a major menu makeover this week, where restaurants now offer more all-day breakfast foods, lighter fare dishes and tapas-style plates. CLICK HERE to get full new menu details.
    • Wienerschnitzel is stepping up its chili offerings by adding a Double Chili Cheeseburger to its menu. The Double Chili Cheeseburger offers two patties and two slices of cheese topped with Wienerschnitzel’s signature chili starting at $2.29.
    • Chick-fil-A rolled out its Spicy Chicken Sandwich to customers nationwide.
    • Del Taco ads a Santa Fe Chicken Soft Taco to its menu this week. The taco features marinated grilled chicken, lettuce and cheddar cheese with a new roasted corn and black bean salsa and Santa Fe sauce. Cost:  $1.49 for a limited time only.
    • BJ’s goes gluten-free: @bjsrestaurants: We are pleased to introduce our Gluten-Free Thin Crust Pizza http://ow.ly/1QTDk
    • True Food Kitchen, slated to open this year in Newport Beach, is hosting job fair for new Fashion Island restaurant June 24-26: http://bit.ly/c2CJTY (via Craig’s list)
    • Have you tried the new ‘feminized’ steaks at Fleming’s ? New steaks cater to women! http://bit.ly/aeF6mu (via @NRNonline )
  • Qdoba adds Mexican Gumbo, 3-cheese nachos and two tacos options to its Craft 2 menu.
  • Jack in the Box debuts a $2.99 Grilled Breakfast Sandwich this week (April 12). It is made with  premium artisan bread, two fried eggs and two slices of American cheese, ham and bacon.
  • Rubio’s added two new lower calorie salads to its menu this week: the Balsamic and Roasted Veggie Salad with Chicken and the Surfside Citrus Salad with Blackened Mahi Mahi.
  • KFC introduces April 12 the heart-stopping Double Down — a bunless sandwich made with two fried chicken fillets. Read more here
  • Irvine-based Juice it Up is selling a new line of “light” smoothies dubbed  “Delightful Blends.” Also, about 22 stores are now offering four more açai bowls. The chain was one of the first big brands to offer a bowl with acai, a Brazilian fruit packed with anti-oxidants.  Stores in Orange County carrying the additional bowls are in Santa Ana (2), Huntington Beach and San Clemente.
  • In May, King’s Fish House restaurants will kick off Lobster Fest. The Costa Mesa-based chain highlights Maine lobsters this time of year, and has added a few meals to its menu: Lobster Bisque and New England Lobster Roll. While lobster is available year-round at the restaurants, Lobster Fest allows diners to enjoy tastier, more affordable lobster, the company said. Nine different sizes are offered with choice of three preparation styles: steamed, stuffed and clam baked.
  • McDonald’s to sell $1 drinks in the summer.
  • Wienerschnitzel’s Lenten offerings: The Sea Dog fish fillet on a six-inch bun with tartar sauce; The Fish Wrap consists of an Alaskan Pollock fillet topped with a combination of salsa and mayonnaise and wrapped in a steamed flour tortilla; and The Fish N’ Chips includes two deep-fried fish fillets laid atop a generous portion of Wienerschnitzel’s hot, crispy french fries. Prices are $1.79 each for the Sea Dog and the Fish Wrap and $3.29 for the Fish N’ Chips.
  • Taco Bell is also offering a shrimp taco, the first time it has offered any seafood dish in 20 years. The Pacific Shrimp Taco cost $2.79 a lat carte; Shrimp & Steak Combo with drink cost$5.49 and Shrimp Tacos Combo (2 Pacific Shrimp Tacos and Large Drink) cost $5.99
  • Jack in the Box scraps natural-cut fries for crispier McDonald’s-inspired fries. (read full storyAPRIL FREEBIE ALERT: The San Diego-based chain revealed on its Facebook page that it is “giving away” its new free fries on “Fryday” April 16. Small fry only. 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Not valid in Spokane, WA; Tulsa, OK.
  • Jamba Juice debuts hot tea lattes this month (March) at stores. Read full story
  • Boston Market is offering a big combo meal special for $2.99. These so-called Market Meal Deals are available for a limited time through March 21. No coupon necessary. Choices include: 1/2 BBQ Chicken Carver with one regular gourmet side; Mini Meatloaf Meal, featuring one slice of meatloaf, one regular gourmet side and cornbread; Side Duo, which includes a choice of two regular gourmet sides and cornbread; or Soup, Side Caesar Salad and cornbread
  • Now through April 18, Krispy Kreme is offering two new, Southern-inspired doughnuts: Banana Pudding doughnut, with banana cream filling, topped with vanilla icing and vanilla wafer crumbles. Also new: Banana Caramel Cake doughnut.  Krispy Kreme operates in Mission Viejo and Orange.
  • BJ’s Restaurants, based in Huntington Beach, has added a Snacks and Small Bites menu, where items range in price $2.95 to $3.95.  New lunch specials starting at $5.95 have also been added to the menu. (Get full list of item)
  • McDonald’s restaurants are now selling the Shamrock Shake for a limited time only. (March 1)
  • Rubio’s Fresh Mexican Grill is now offering bottled beverages:  Fuze, Vitamin Water and Snapple Iced Tea.
  • Jack in the Box debuts a new Grilled Chicken Salad this week (March 1).  The new  salad features a blend of Romaine, Iceberg and Spring Mix lettuces, and is topped with grilled chicken, shredded cheddar cheese, grape tomatoes, cucumber slices, red onion and shredded carrots. It is served with seasoned croutons and a low-fat balsamic dressing.   The other two entree salads are the Chicken Club Salad and Southwest Chicken Salad. Cost: $4.99.
  • For a limited time during Lent, Del Taco is bringing back the crispy shrimp taco.
  • Buca di Beppo restaurants have revamped their menu, adding a handful of new dishes including a line of pizzas.  Prices for the pizzas (chicken pesto, veggie, 4 Cheese, Supremo Italiano) range from $12.45 to $21.95.
  • For the month of February, all Dairy Queen and DQ Grill & Chill locations will sell a Midnight Truffle Blizzard — a mix of chocolate truffle pieces blended with rich, dark cocoa fudge and creamy vanilla soft serve.
  • Starting today (2/4/2010), all Beach Pit BBQ locations have added smoked vegetables to their menu. Also, the chain is now offering a la carte for all items on the menu due to customer demand.
  • Jack in the Box debuts Thursday (Feb. 4) two grilled, panini-style sandwiches. Get full details here.
  • For a limited-time only in February, Sonic restaurants will give you a free medium order of onion rings when you buy the chain’s new Steak Melt Toaster (made with sirloin steak). Locally, Sonic operates carhops inMission Viejo and Anaheim.
  • Pei Wei restaurants added Caramel Chicken entree to its menu, a sweet & spicy Vietnamese-inspired wok-prepared dish.  Cost: $7.75-$9. Customers can sub chicken for beef, shrimp, vegetables or tofu.
  • Irvine-based Taco Bell is introduce a cheap $5 meal dubbed the “Five Buck Box.” The box comes in two combinations. Volcano Box: includes the volcano taco, volcano double beef burrito, crunchy taco, cinnamon twists and a medium drink. The Cheesy Gordita Crunch Box features the cheesy gordita crunch, burrito Supreme, crunchy taco, cinnamon twists and a medium drink.
  • Carl’s Jr. added a Grilled Sourdough Sandwich to its menu in late January: Get details here.
  • Baja Fresh is promoting on its Facebook page four new “primo” tacos: Spicy Marinated Fire-Grilled Steak, Blackened Mahi Mahi, Blackened Shrimp and Langostino Lobster.  No word on price. Stay tuned.
  • Jamba Juice is now offering $1 oatmeal on Wednesday. It’s also added a new flavor to the morning hot meal: Berry Cherry Pecan.
  • T.G.I. Friday’s restaurants said Monday (1/11) that it is bringing back its “3 for $12.99″ dinner menu. The value deal allows diners to combine three items (an appetizer, main entree and dessert) for $12.99. The restaurant claims more than 300 food combinations are possible.  Six new dishes have been added to the menu, and are included in the meal deal:  three types of Wedge Salads (Italian, Southwest and Classic), Sizzling Parmesan-Crusted Chicken, Sizzling Chicken Mexicali and a Southwest Southwest Chicken Quesadilla. The dinner for two $20 deal is also a great option. You get a shrimp cocktail, two entree choices, and dessert.  (Menu details)
  • Wienerschnitzel is offering the following three items for $3.99: chili cheeseburger, chili cheese fries and a chili cheese dog.  Deal good through Jan. 30.
  • Also, a Laguna Hills operator tells us that turkey dogs are coming back. A company rep confirms that the dogs return Feb. 1. They will sell for 99 cents.
  • Hooters has added a weekly cheap eats deal dubbed “More than a Mouthful Mondays.”  For $5.99, the restaurants will offer a 1/2 pound cheeseburger with fries all day, every Monday. (By the way, on Wednesdays, Hooters sells a $5.99 boneless wing platter.)
  • Denny’s is testing a Value Menu in Southern California, as well as other regions in the country.  Prices range from $2 to $8 for items such as a value slam and a BBQ sandwich.
  • Ruby’s Diner has added four new eggs Benedict dishes to its breakfast menu. Get details and 2-for1 coupon here.
  • For a limited time only, KFC is selling fiery grilled wings.
  • Applebee’s introduced five new dishes under 550 calories: Asian Crunch Salad for $7.99;  Grilled Dijon Chicken for $9.99;  Spicy Shrimp Diavolo for $9.99; Grilled Shrimp & Island Rice for $ 10.99; Asiago Peppercorn Steak for $12.99
  • Del Taco’s Facebook page (yes, DT is finally doing social media!) announced that due to popular demand Shredded Beef is now a permanent part of the menu.
  • El Pollo Loco is starting off the New Year with a major menu addition: The Costa Mesa-chain has added sirloin steak to its menu. To get the full scoop, and see pics of the new steak meals, read this blog post:  El Pollo Loco chickens out, adds steak.
  • Taco Bell rebrands its Fresco menu, and tweaks nutritional value of some food items. Read more: Drive-Thru Diet campaign.
  • Chick-fil-A adds a yogurt parfait to its breakfast menu as of Jan. 4. Cost: $2.25. The chain also upgraded its coffee.
  • McDonald’s new $1 breakfast menu should be in full swing by Jan. 1