I’m a sucker for food trends. I stalk countless Instagram accounts for inspiration for tomorrow’s morning oatmeal toppings. I spend hours in Wegmans, searching the Nature’s Marketplace aisles for the latest “superfood,” or walked confusedly through the international asile, wondering whether I can make the ramen as delicious as cult-favorite Momofuku. My roommates are consistently asking, “what’s that?” when they see me unloading my grocery haul.
While I’m more apt to try health food trends, I can get behind a Cronut burger any day. But one thing I can’t get behind, is a food trend made up of things I don’t understand. For example, the unnaturally green Shamrock Shake that recently made its debut back in the McDonald’s across America. The company announced its return on February 17, with a tweet:
Wait for it… wait for it… GO! Shamrock Shakes are back! pic.twitter.com/2F6gsWkbAC
— McDonald’s (@McDonalds) February 17, 2015
Since its official introduction in 1970, McDonald’s has sold more than 60 million shakes. People celebrate the Shamrock Shake’s return like the favorite Starbucks beverage, the Pumpkin Spice Latter (or #PSL) in fall.
I’ve never been a fan of this St. Patrick’s Day-inspired treat—it’s just too green. What could possibly be in this shake of a “mystery” flavor and Hulk-like color? The answer: 54 puzzling ingredients (and, for a 22-oz shake, 820 calories, 23 grams of fat and 115 grams of sugar).
Don’t get me wrong—I love a big burger and crispy fries as much as the next girl. But my rule of thumb is that if I have to hesitate trying to pronounce something in the ingredient list, I probably shouldn’t be eating it. Between the sodium benzoate, carrageenan, and mono- and di-glycerides, I spent a little too much time reading the Shamrock Shake anatomy.
If this is one of your indulgences—like half a cake on your birthday, or too many chicken wings on Superbowl Sunday—who am I to stop you from Shamrock Shak-ing it up? But if you feel like skipping that ingredient list to try a homemade version of minty McDonald’s goodness, give one of these recipes a try.