McDonald’s Breakfast Menu Prices Over the Years: A Quick Look

The McDonald’s breakfast menu has come a long way since it was first introduced. With a history dating back to the 1970s, the McDonald’s breakfast menu has evolved to meet the changing demands of consumers and the fast-food market. Prices have fluctuated throughout the years, reflecting both shifts in the economy and changes in McDonald’s strategy.

McDonald's Menu Items

Customers have witnessed the introduction, removal, and re-introduction of various items over the years. From the iconic Egg McMuffin (we love the Egg White Delight!) to the more recent McGriddles (not our favorite), McDonald’s has managed to retain and grow a loyal customer base for their morning servings. The breakfast menu has played a significant role in the overall success of the brand and continues to be a popular choice for millions of people worldwide.

Key Takeaways

  • McDonald’s breakfast menu has evolved over the years, both in terms of offerings and pricing.
  • Iconic items such as the Egg McMuffin have contributed to the success and popularity of McDonald’s breakfast menu.
  • The breakfast menu has had a major impact on McDonald’s overall brand and market presence.

The Rise of McDonald’s Breakfast

Back in the day, when ol’ Ray Kroc stumbled upon a small fast-food joint in California, little did he know that he was laying the foundation of a global franchise. McDonald’s, once just a local eatery, soon became an international phenomenon. But it didn’t stop there – the chain took the world by storm when it introduced its signature breakfast menu.

The McDonald’s breakfast journey began with a humble Egg McMuffin in the early 1970s. This iconic sandwich became widely popular, thanks to its unique shape molded by the egg ring, a genius invention that is still used in all of their locations today. As years passed, McDonald’s continued to expand its breakfast offerings. Today, the menu includes a wide range of items, such as Bacon, Egg & Cheese Biscuits, Sausage McGriddles, and Hotcakes, just to name a few. Check their current menu here.

One significant aspect that can’t be overlooked is the pricing strategy that has evolved over the years. McDonald’s has always strived to provide quality meals at affordable prices. The introduction of various menu pricing options, like the $1, $2, $3 Dollar Menu (learn more about it here), has made it even more accessible to a wider audience. While it is difficult to compare the exact menu prices from the early days to now, it is evident that McDonald’s has continuously adapted its pricing to cater to the ever-changing consumer preferences.

In recent years, McDonald’s has faced stiff competition from other fast-food chains entering the breakfast scene. Recent entries include Wendy’s and Taco Bell, but other heavy hitters like Burger King have vied for your breakfast dollars for years. However, the brand came up with an innovative move – the All-Day Breakfast. This decision proved to be a game-changer, giving customers the freedom to enjoy their favorite breakfast items anytime they want.

So, as we take a quick look back at the rise of McDonald’s breakfast, it’s evident that the franchise has continuously reinvented itself, both in terms of menu offerings and pricing strategies. The McDonald’s breakfast menu has come a long way since the days of Ray Kroc’s vision, and it will surely continue to evolve as the fast-food landscape changes in the future.


Evolution of the Breakfast Menu

1970s: The Birth of Egg McMuffin

In the 1970s, McDonald’s ventured into the breakfast arena by introducing the Egg McMuffin. This innovative menu item was created by franchisee Herb Peterson, who wanted to offer customers a fast food alternative to traditional breakfast items. The Egg McMuffin quickly gained popularity and became a staple in McDonald’s breakfast offerings.

1980s: Addition of Hotcakes and Biscuits

The success of the Egg McMuffin encouraged McDonald’s to expand its breakfast menu. In the 1980s, Hotcakes and Biscuits were introduced, giving customers more options for a quick and satisfying breakfast. Hotcakes brought a sweet touch to the menu, while Biscuits offered a more savory alternative that could be accompanied by sausage, bacon, or eggs.

1990s: Introduction of McGriddles

The 1990s saw further diversification of the McDonald’s breakfast menu with the introduction of McGriddles. These innovative sandwiches feature two maple-flavored griddle cakes sandwiching an egg, cheese, and a choice of bacon or sausage. McGriddles quickly became popular due to their unique combination of sweet and savory flavors.

2000s: Oatmeal and All-Day Breakfast

In the 2000s, McDonald’s continued to expand its breakfast options with the introduction of Oatmeal. This healthier option provided a warm and filling meal for customers seeking something different from the traditional fast food breakfast. Simultaneously, McDonald’s introduced the All-Day Breakfast, allowing customers to enjoy their favorite breakfast items at any time of the day – a major game-changer for the fast food industry.

2020s: Spicy Chicken Nuggets and More

Entering the 2020s, McDonald’s breakfast menu has continued to evolve, with the introduction of Spicy Chicken Nuggets and other innovative items. Today, the McDonald’s breakfast menu offers a wide variety of options catering to different tastes and preferences, while always remaining true to its commitment of providing quick, convenient, and satisfying meals.

Price Changes Over the Years

Introduction of the Dollar Menu

In the early 2000s, McDonald’s introduced the Dollar Menu, which boasted a variety of breakfast items at an affordable price of just one dollar. This menu was created to attract more customers and offer low-cost breakfast options. Items like the sausage biscuit and hash browns became popular staples among fast-food breakfast lovers. The Dollar Menu eventually evolved into the $1 $2 $3 Dollar Menu, featuring more options and flexibility in pricing tiers.

Price Influence of Ingredients

The prices of McDonald’s breakfast menu items have been influenced over the years by the costs of ingredients like eggs, potatoes for hash browns, and other components. For instance, fluctuations in egg prices could result in changes to the prices of Egg McMuffins or other egg-based menu items. McDonald’s must adjust its prices to cover the higher ingredient costs while maintaining a competitive edge in the fast-food market.

Franchise Influence on Price

Individual McDonald’s franchisees have some control over the pricing of menu items in their restaurants. While the corporate office sets suggested prices for items, franchise owners can adjust the prices based on local market demand, ingredient costs, and other factors. This flexibility allows franchisees to respond to local economic conditions and maintain the appeal of their restaurant’s offerings.

Impact of Equipment on Pricing

Throughout the years, the evolution of equipment used in McDonald’s restaurants, particularly for breakfast items, has also influenced pricing. As the company introduced new cooking techniques and faster equipment, it increased efficiency, potentially reducing production costs. However, the investment in new technology also carries costs that may be passed on to the consumer through higher menu prices.

Pricing and Quality

McDonald’s has consistently prioritized both affordability and quality in its breakfast menu items. The introduction of the Dollar Menu, as well as the subsequent $1 $2 $3 Dollar Menu, aimed to provide customers with a range of value-priced options. At the same time, the company strives to maintain a reputation for serving tasty, high-quality breakfast items, whether it’s their signature Egg McMuffin or a simple serving of hotcakes. Balancing affordability and quality continues to be a key consideration in McDonald’s pricing strategies.

Noteworthy Breakfast Menu Items

Over the years, McDonald’s breakfast menu has featured a variety of delicious items that have attracted customers during the early hours of the day. Some of these classics have remained popular and unchanged, while others have been modified or even discontinued.

Starting with the iconic Egg McMuffin, this item has been a staple on the breakfast menu since its introduction. It consists of a freshly cracked egg, Canadian bacon, and a slice of cheese, all sandwiched between a perfectly toasted English muffin. Pairing it with crispy Hash Browns gives you the perfect breakfast combo.

Another crowd-pleaser, the Sausage Burrito, offers a yummy breakfast option for those on the go. Filled with sausage, scrambled eggs, melted cheese, onions, peppers, and a little spice, this burrito gives off a burst of flavors that can kickstart any morning.

For a hearty and satisfying meal, the Big Breakfast has made its mark, featuring scrambled eggs, a sausage patty, a fluffy biscuit, and hash browns. Customers can also opt for the Big Breakfast with Hotcakes, which adds another layer of indulgence with three delicious hotcakes and syrup.

One noticeable evolution in the McDonald’s breakfast menu was the introduction of McGriddles. These sweet and savory sandwiches consist of items like the Bacon, Egg & Cheese McGriddles and the Sausage, Egg & Cheese McGriddles. What sets them apart from traditional breakfast sandwiches is the use of griddle cakes with a hint of maple flavor as the exterior, giving a unique and memorable taste experience.

Over time, McDonald’s has offered more diverse breakfast options, like the Sausage, Egg & Cheese and Bacon, Egg & Cheese biscuits. These hearty sandwiches boast a flaky, buttery biscuit as the foundation and provide a great alternative for customers who prefer a different texture from the English muffin.

While McDonald’s breakfast menu has undoubtedly evolved over the years, it has remained a favorite among customers for its variety, affordability, and timeless appeal. Whatever your morning craving may be, there’s likely a McDonald’s breakfast item that can satisfy it.

The Impact of McDonald’s Breakfast Menu

Over the years, McDonald’s breakfast menu has played a significant role in attracting customers to the Golden Arches. Known for its wide variety of offerings, the fast-food giant has successfully captured the taste buds of people of all ages and backgrounds.

The introduction of all-day breakfast in 2015 was a game changer for McDonald’s, with predictions of a 2.5% increase in sales per year. This move not only boosted revenue but also increased guest counts by 2.3% and added $31 million in profits. As more people enjoyed the convenience of having breakfast anytime, the popularity of items like the Egg McMuffin and Sausage McGriddles skyrocketed.

One important aspect of McDonald’s breakfast menu is its adaptability to customer preferences. Over the years, the menu has expanded to cater to various tastes, with options such as:

  • Bacon, Egg & Cheese Biscuit
  • Egg McMuffin
  • Sausage McMuffin
  • Sausage McMuffin with Egg
  • Sausage Biscuit
  • Sausage Biscuit with Egg
  • Bacon, Egg & Cheese McGriddles
  • Sausage McGriddles
  • Sausage, Egg & Cheese McGriddles
  • Big Breakfast
  • Big Breakfast with Hotcakes
  • Hotcakes
  • Hotcakes and Sausage
  • Sausage Burrito
  • Hash Browns

However, the continuous evolution of the breakfast menu isn’t just about offering new flavors. McDonald’s has also made efforts to incorporate healthier options into the menu, such as using liquid eggs in Eggs Benedict instead of fried or scrambled eggs.

The self-service aspect of McDonald’s has made ordering breakfast more accessible and efficient, allowing customers to customize their meals to their liking. This convenience has contributed to the growth of breakfast menu sales, giving customers more freedom and control over their meal choices.

In conclusion, the impact of McDonald’s breakfast menu on customers, revenue, and the overall Golden Arches brand has been significant. It has allowed the company to cater to a wider audience and adapt to changing customer preferences and expectations.


Over the years, McDonald’s breakfast menu prices have undergone various changes. The company continuously adapts its menu offerings and pricing strategies to appeal to different customers and remain competitive in the market. Some items have been introduced or removed, while others have seen price adjustments.

For instance, the introduction of the $1, $2, $3 Dollar Menu made certain breakfast items more affordable. Alongside these changes, McDonald’s has also embraced new technologies and presentation styles, like the use of video screens for displaying their menu.

Despite these alterations, McDonald’s has maintained its standing as the world’s largest hamburger fast-food chain, serving consistent and recognizable menu items in over 120 countries. The company’s commitment to providing its customers with familiar tastes has become a key component of their identity and success.

In summary, McDonald’s continually evolves its breakfast menu options and prices to cater to the changing preferences and demands of its patrons worldwide. They demonstrate how vital it is for businesses to understand their target market and make necessary adjustments to stay relevant and maintain customer satisfaction.

Frequently Asked Questions

How have McDonald’s breakfast menu prices changed since the 1990s?

McDonald’s breakfast menu prices have generally increased over the years since the 1990s. Along with inflation and cost of living adjustments, the company also made various changes to its menu, introducing new items and discontinuing others. As a result, comparing prices directly from one decade to another can be challenging.

What were typical McDonald’s breakfast menu prices in the early 2000s?

In the early 2000s, McDonald’s breakfast menu pricing was quite different from today, with many burger options having lower prices. It is difficult to directly compare the prices due to changes in the menu over the years, but most items were more affordable compared to today’s prices.

How much did a McDonald’s breakfast cost in 2015?

It is difficult to provide an exact cost for a McDonald’s breakfast in 2015, as the price varied depending on the specific menu items chosen and the location of the restaurant. However, around that time, the fast-food chain offered several value menu options and combo meals, allowing customers to select affordable options for their breakfast needs.

What is the rate of increase in McDonald’s breakfast prices over the years?

The rate of increase in McDonald’s breakfast menu prices over the years cannot be calculated precisely due to several factors. Menu item changes, regional price variations, and promotions all contribute to fluctuations in the prices. Additional factors, such as inflation and the cost of living, also play a role in price adjustments, making it challenging to pinpoint an exact rate of increase.

Did McDonald’s menu prices fluctuate significantly between 1990 and 2009?

Between 1990 and 2009, McDonald’s menu prices experienced some fluctuations. While this period saw an overall increase in prices, certain promotions and limited-time offers allowed customers to enjoy more affordable options at times. In addition, the introduction of new menu items and discontinuation of others contributed to price changes, making it difficult to quantify the exact degree of fluctuation.

How did the introduction of new items affect the overall McDonald’s breakfast menu prices?

When McDonald’s introduces new items to its breakfast menu, the overall prices may be affected in various ways. A new item might lead to the discontinuation or reconfiguration of existing items, which can cause price shifts. Additionally, the cost of producing new ingredients and adjusting their supply chains may impact the prices of other menu items. However, these changes often aim to maintain the overall value proposition for customers.

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