10 Fast Food Menu Hacks to Saving Money

When you’re hungry and in a hurry, fast food is sometimes your only option. However, despite what some people might believe about fast food, it isn’t always that cheap. Especially if you want to upsize something or add extras like more meat and cheese. You just have to know a few of the valuable secrets about these places that will let you get more food for less money. If you’re the kind of person who likes to eat but also likes to have a little extra cash in your wallet, then you need to follow these 10 fast food menu hacks that will save you money!

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Chipotle: Ask for Two Different Proteins

Chipotle is the place to go when you need something truly substantial: a big fat burrito or a protein-packed bowl, or even just a nice, melty, cheesy quesadilla. Chipotle is delicious but it can get a little bit pricey. So what can you do to make sure you’re getting the most for your money? Well, there’s actually at least one way to stretch your dollar at Chipotle. When you order anything, you add a protein: chicken, steak, barbacoa, or carnitas. All of those are good choices, and you can always ask for a double portion. However, you’re going to end up paying a lot more for that extra meat. If you really want to get more out of your meal, ask for two different proteins in your dish. The staff will be happy to do this, as they will just give you a half portion of each meat. However, it’s more than likely you’ll get more meat than usual since it’s more difficult to measure a perfect half portion than a full portion. That means you’ll probably end up with at least 1.5 times the meat you would normally get for no extra cost! If you ask us, that’s a pretty great deal, especially if you’re looking to fill yourself up.

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Starbucks: Ask for Less Ice in Your Iced coffee

Sometimes when you’re getting something to eat or drink at your favorite place, it’s not about necessarily saving a buck, but rather getting more for the money that you’re paying. After all, if you really want something, you’re not going to be nearly as satisfied with a cheaper, smaller item instead. Take a trip to Starbucks, for example. It’s a warm day and you’re in the mood for an iced coffee. However, you were up a little late the previous night and you really need that caffeine boost to your system. Sure, you could save a couple of bucks by getting a tall iced coffee, but let’s face it: you want that grande iced coffee. So what can you do to get more bang for your buck? The solution is actually really simple, and it’s something you can use to stretch your dollar further at other places too: just ask for less ice in your iced coffee. After all, the coffee they’re using for the iced version is already cold, and all that ice is just taking up valuable real estate in your cup. If you really wanted to get crazy, you could always ask for no ice at all, although that seems like it would make your coffee lukewarm at best, rather than keeping it cold.

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Arby’s: Order Two Jr. Roast Beef Sandwiches Instead

When you’re really craving meat, there’s nothing quite like a sandwich from Arby’s (they do have the meats, after all). Of course, sometimes you’re a little low on cash, meaning you have to get less of that delicious roast beef that you are so badly craving. Well that’s just no good, is it? We have good news, though, roast beef lovers of the world! There’s a simple way to make your money do more for you at Arby’s. Rather than ordering a single regular sized roast beef sandwich, just order two jr. beef and cheddars. You get more food for a slightly lower cost. It might seem like that’s impossible, but the math doesn’t lie. Ordering two jr. roast beef sandwiches instead of the large will actually save you $1.19. That’s pretty impressive when you think about it! Besides, you’re also getting two buns with your meal that way, so you can fill up on carbs. Of course, the other, lower carb solution would be to move the roast beef from one jr sandwich over to the other, giving yourself double the meat on a single jr. sandwich. Sure, you might get some strange looks doing that, but if you’re trying to cut down on the amount of bread in your diet, that’s not a bad way to start.

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Subway: Split a Footlong Instead of Ordering Two Six Inch Subs

If you’re really looking to fill yourself up, and you’re tired of all the greasy, deep fried options for fast food, then Subway is your best bet for something fresh and packed with vegetables. Of course, getting a footlong sub can sometimes be a bit too much for one person. A six inch will often do a fine job of filling you up. What if you’re going there with a friend, though? Well, there’s a solution for both of you to save a little bit of money. As long as the two of you are getting the same kind of sub (that is, with the same kind of meat, bread, and cheese), then you can just order one footlong and ask the sandwich artist to split it. This is a smart way to save money at Subway because the truth is that a single footlong is always less expensive than getting two six inch subs. This way, you and your friend can get a sandwich dressed up with any toppings you want while really only paying for one bigger sandwich. Again, though, you’ll have to make sure that you and your friend want the same kind of sub. Otherwise, this money-saving trick does not work at all.

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Taco Bell: Customize the Triple Layer Nachos

We’ve talked before about how great Taco Bell can be when you really want to fill yourself up since there are so many ways to customize their food. Well, we’re back to share a little money saving trick that can help you to make your money work better for you when you visit the Bell. Everybody loves the side chips and cheese, but when you need to save a little bit of money, there’s actually a novel solution to getting chips and cheese for just a little bit cheaper. All you have to do is order the triple layer nachos, and ask for a little bit of that signature Taco Bell customization. See, the triple layer nachos, if you tell them to hold the beans and red sauce come out at a cost of $1.10, whereas the chips and cheese cost $1.30 on their own. So what you end up with are more nachos, which are already covered in that delicious cheese sauce for 20 cents less! It might seem like a miracle, but this is a true tip for how to get more food for your money at Taco Bell. Besides, the staff is able to customize any dish in almost any way imaginable, so they won’t even mind doing this.

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Culver’s: Get the Kid’s Meal

Culver’s may not be one of the most well-known fast food chains out there, but they should be more recognized for their great food menu, as well as their delicious frozen custard. It’s also a great restaurant to hit up when you want to get a decent meal for less money. How do you do that exactly? Well, to the untrained eye, it would appear that the food cost just as much as it does anywhere else. However, the real secret to getting more food for your money at Culver’s is actually really simple. All you have to do is order the kids meal. “But wait,” you might be saying, “how am I, an adult, supposed to get enough food from just a kids meal?” Well, at Culver’s the kids’ meal is actually fairly substantial. With it, you get a cheeseburger, fries, small drink, plus a scoop of that delicious frozen custard. How much does it cost? $4.99. That’s right! You’re essentially getting eight dollars worth of food for only five bucks. You’ll get full enough to carry on with your day, and you get a delicious dessert to go with it all as well. So next time you’re hungry and looking for a good meal, don’t dismiss Culver’s. It might just be your best bet!

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Chick-fil-A: Order Strips and Toasted Buns Instead of Sandwiches

Everyone knows that for the best chicken sandwich in the game, you have to head to Chick-fil-A. Their fried chicken sandwich, complete with those pickles and a nicely toasted bun, make for one great meal when you need something to satisfy your hunger. However, sometimes those sandwiches seem just a little out of a person’s price range. Luckily, there’s an easy way to save money and get the same sandwich experience at Chick-fil-A. As anyone who visits the restaurant knows, their menu, along with all their sandwiches, also includes the option to get chicken strips, marinated and fried in the exact same way as the chicken for their sandwiches. Along with those strips, you can also order, as a side, a couple of toasted buns. Now, instead of paying six dollars for a single regular sized sandwich, you’ve paid significantly less for two smaller sandwiches! It’s basically the Arby’s principle but with delicious fried chicken instead of roast beef. Of course, this will only work if you want to get the traditional chicken sandwich, and not something like they spicy chicken sandwich, which is so delicious that it is just worth the full price anyway. If you’re really hungry though, this is a great deal to get in on!

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KFC: Stick With the Combos

Speaking of fried chicken, there’s really no competing with the Colonel, is there? KFC is the originator of the bucket of chicken, the 11 secret herbs and spices, and the idea of getting a meal of fast food fried chicken for the entire family. Of course, along with their classic fried chicken, there are also plenty of great combos. A good meal at KFC isn’t always cheap. Or is it?! Turns out, that to get the most value for your money at KFC, all you have to do is stick with the combos that we just mentioned. While they may be cheap, they pack a lot of food into one meal. So much, in fact, that it doesn’t even seem like it’s possible. For example, a five dollar box meal will get you two small chicken sandwiches, a cookie, a biscuit, a side, and a medium drink. That’s a huge amount of food for only five bucks, and considering that everything without the sandwiches alone would cost about $4.50, this is more than a great deal: it is an excellent one! So really, don’t ignore the low price for the combos. It might make it seem like you’re not getting all that much, especially in today’s world when five dollars won’t really get you anything, but the value is unmatched in the fried chicken game, so you might as well go for it!

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McDonald’s: Make a Double Cheeseburger into a Mini Big Mac

Without question, the Big Mac is the king of fast food sandwiches. Everybody knows what you get with the Big Mac: two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, and a sesame seed bun. It’s pretty unbeatable in the taste department, as there’s just something so perfectly satisfying about all those ingredients coming together. However, the Big Mac meal can end up being a little bit pricey if you’re trying to save some money. So what can you do? Do you just go without enjoying this pillar of fast food creations? Do you find another favorite menu item and stick with that instead? Absolutely not! There’s an easy solution to getting the flavors you love and saving money. All you have to do is order yourself a double cheeseburger, and add all the ingredients to make it into a miniature Big Mac! That’s right, this actually works! And it’s easier than ever with the ordering kiosks at most McDonald’s locations. All you have to do is order the double cheeseburger without ketchup or mustard, add mac sauce and lettuce, and there you have it! The poor man’s Big Mac is a great option for when you want a McDonald’s classic without breaking the bank, and what’s really great is that by doing this with a double cheeseburger, you also get an extra slice of that incomparable McDonald’s cheese!

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Dairy Queen: Customize Your Blizzard

To finish off a great fast food meal, there’s nothing quite as refreshing or delicious as the classic DQ Blizzard. with a variety of flavors to choose from already, these frozen treats are definitely worth the money. However, sometimes you might want a little bit more out of your dessert. How do you do that with a Blizzard? It’s easy! You can ask for many different customizations to your Blizzard for free, and the DQ staff will typically be happy to add them in. This includes adding a little extra shot of flavor syrup or blending two different flavors together into an entirely new one. How about a chocolate cherry blizzard? Or what about a delicious coffee blizzard base with some Heath bits or Oreo cookie crumbles? You can do it all, therefore getting more bang for your buck at any Dairy Queen location! You can thank us after you’ve tried adding more flavor to your Blizzard. We promise you’ll never taste a Blizzard the same way again.

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A modern millennial guy with a cute little family. Located in Southern California. I like writing about fun topics that are interesting to learn about.

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