# If You Want To Be A McMillionaire, You'd Better Start Eating

If you’ve become addicted to McDonald’s Monopoly promotion, you may wonder roughly how many Big Macs you’ll have to eat until you can realistically hope to win a major prize

The number crunchers at Eat With A Spork has some comforting news for you, though. Using the site’s calculator, reader Mike determined you’ll only need to eat 476,991 Big Macs in order to expect to win \$500 whopping dollars in prize money.

Mike writes:

Ingested 257,575,140 calories.
Consumed 13,832,739 grams of fat.
Inhaled 496,070,640 milligrams of sodium.
Took in 21,464,595 grams of carbohydrates.
Packed on 73,592.90 pounds.
You spent \$1,779,176.43 trying to win a \$500 prize.

McDonald’s may not be generous with prizes in the contest, but it sure doesn’t shortchange you on of sodium, carbs or calories.

I’m Feelin’ It [Eat With A Spork]

Thanks, Michael!

Previoiusly: How Have You Fared At McNopoly?

1. XianZomby says:

Forget Big MAcs. I’m eating my way to riches with the McRib.

• buzz86us says:

I think the chances of winning the million are less than the chances of keeling over from a heart attack from eating all that “food” as McDonalds calls it.

• BlkSwanPres says:

The chances are slightly less than you keeling over from the weight of your self righteousness.

• BlkSwanPres says:

The chances are slightly less than you keeling over from the weight of your self righteousness.

• Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

I laughed, despite how stupid that was.

• Ichabod says:

“Sorry the animal we use to make the McRib is now extinct”

“Cow?, Pig?”

“No, think smaller, more legs.”

It’s gonna be a good week when that bad boy gets back. There’s a very real chance I might die! I just don’t know if I can last two more weeks!

McRib Mornin’ Noon and Night. Livin’ the dream

• XianZomby says:

God bless you sir. Perhaps you will set up your tent near my tent in the line I know will form outside my local McDonalds in advance of this historic, monumental, delicious event.

I will get bibs in advance and we can dine together. I’m going to wear the plastic bib featuring Grimace. You can have the plastic bib with Ronald McDonald.

• Blake says:

Screw McDonald’s, I’ve earned a free internet from Cicadymm!

2. jivesukka says:

The fries give you 4 pieces and since they are really potatoes they are good for you…right?

• fs2k2isfun says:

As far as school lunches are concerned they are a vegetable, so I would say yes!

• drburk says:

Ketchup is not a vegetable for school lunch purposes. The idea was proposed but removed from the standards before they passed.

• Back to waiting, but I did get a cute dragon ear cuff says:

Actually, the “ketchup” they proposed as a vegetable serving was based on flavored concentrated tomato paste. So that the 2 Tbs of that “ketchup” actually did contain a whole serving of vegetables, a tomato with all the water removed. Plus some HFCS to give it a ketchup flavor.

• Marko723 says:

A tomato is a fruit!

• ArmyCats says:

simple…

large tomato = vegetable
small tomato = fruit

• Marko723 says:

No, It’s a fruit.

• Marko723 says:

Tomato is a fruit, look it up.

• ArmyCats says:

I looked it up… That’s a matter of opinion. Scientists’ opinions in this case.
I stand by my own opinion and refuse to accept any other.

• Rommel says:

Take a look at carrots and lettuce. Are there any visible seeds, or seeds that you can easily feel?

Now take a look at the apple, orange, or tomato. Hmm… those little round thingies inside them must be flavor capacitors or something…

• SabreDC says:

EVERYTHING that grows in the ground or on vegetation is a vegetable. Fruits are the flowering ovaries that contain seeds to reproduce. Botanically, green beans are fruits as are tomatoes, and corn kernels. But they are still part of the vegetable kingdom.

• CarnivorousPETA says:

As far as school lunches are concerned, a AA battery is a vegetable.

• Phineas says:

Put ketchup on them and you have two servings of vegetables!

• I wumbo. You wumbo. He- she- me... wumbo. Wumbo; Wumboing; We'll have thee wumbo; Wumborama; Wumbology; the study of Wumbo. says:

It stops being a veggie as soon as it is dipped into the fryer.

3. ap0 says:

I used to get suckered into that when I was a kid. I was a fat kid.

4. CyGuy says:

At least at the last McDonalds I was at, regular coffee was a dollar regardless of size and the Large size came with game pieces. This seemed to be the best value as far getting game pieces, it would have been an even better value if I hadn’t set the tray on one of those tables with the corner cut off at an angle which sent the tray and coffee to the floor.

BTW, I won a large sandwich – oddly it excludes Big Macs, which I would have no intention of getting anyway when I can get an Angus.

That is because the Big Macs have game pieces on them. All the food prizes you can win exclude anything that has game pieces on them. They don’t want you to keep getting free food.

• leprechaunshawn says:

I would have to disagree with you. I had a #1 on Thursday and only my drink had game pieces on it.

• leprechaunshawn says:

Maybe my local McDonalds didnt have the Bic Mac boxes with pieces on Thursday. I decided to run to McD’s before the start of the Packer game and my Big Mac had pieces today.

These statistics appear to assume that the promotion company isn’t stealing all the winning game pieces (again).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McDonald's_Monopoly#Fraud

6. I just blue myself says:

My brother in law won a breakfast sandwich and \$50. I have no idea how long it took him to get those, though.

• Rachacha says:

I remember many many years ago when I was in High school, the school band and chorus were traveling to a competition, and the group opted to work together and combine all of their game pieces when we were on the trip. We had 400+ people and several trips to McDonalds. We were able to fill over 10 complete monopoly boards except for the winning tickets on each. The only thing that we won were food prizes.

7. MikeM_inMD says:

I make my own McDonald’s Monopoly game pieces at home. ;-)

• omg says:

And how much have you won so far?

8. stint7 says:

I hate McNopoly so much…

• scotchguard says:

ditto. It’s just a marketing scam. No one wins any prizes except for food. whooptydo. *spins finger in air*.

I can’t believe so many people still get excited over it.

9. KillerBee says:

To be fair, you don’t have to eat them, you just have to buy them.

• enalzi says:

To be fair, it’s no purchase necessary, so you don’t even have to buy them. Just a stamp and two envelopes.

• KillerBee says:

Good point.

• CyGuy says:

Two stamps and two envelopes – getting awfully close to the \$1 I paid for a large coffee to get a pair of game pieces.

• Michaela says:

That’s how I play.

P.S.: My sister won a \$50 Shell gift card from the game yesterday! :D

10. omg says:

Once upon a time promotional games like this had a “no purchase necessary” requirement where you could, once per day, walk in, and get a game piece without buying anything. Wendy’s once had a game called Tic-Tac-Taste where the game pieces contained a single letter and the larger prizes were based on collecting all the letters to spell any single component.

As I delivered pizzas at the Domino’s next door to Wendy’s, obtaining my free daily game piece was easy and convenient. My cynical observation at the time was that all I ever got on the game pieces was “T” and “A” – the rare letters needed to win the larger prizes were “C” and “S” – and I wondered if that was intended to subliminally remind consumers of their “Hot and Juicy” ad campaign.

Fast Food apparently complained about the mandated free game pieces; getting a free game piece now requires mailing in a request with a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) for them to mail back your game piece. This means it now costs almost one dollar to get a game piece without a purchase, so I assume practically nobody bothers doing so.

• DanRydell says:

Tons of people did when you were guaranteed to win at least 1 Best Buy Buck each time (and sometimes more). People mailed in hundreds of envelopes, effectively converting cash into Best Buy currency at a pretty good discount.

11. dpeters11 says:

Yum, 15 tons of fat and half a ton of sodium.

12. Mongoloideon says:

All that fat and sodium and yet so little flavor. I have never understood the appeal of the sweet and loafy Big Mac, and it was always telling that it was a forced sell because of it being on all these promotional offerings.

Which flagship sandwich came first? Big Mac or Whopper or what?

• Thespian says:

Neither, actually. The Big Mac itself is just a knockoff of the Big Boy. But I imagine it probably did come along before the Whopper.

13. Oranges w/ Cheese says:

It’s kind of worrying that there’s more sodium than calories (almost twice as much) in those things O_o

• Alvis says:

You can’t compare different units.

• StuffThingsObjects says:

I find it weird that I have two testes yet only one penis. Why don’t I have two penises?

• ap0 says:

So you mean apples != oranges? Blasphemy.

14. FrugalFreak says:

Hash browns are cheapest prize, some places have 2 for a Dollar=4 pieces for \$1

• FrugalFreak says:

prize=product. had prize on the brain.

15. Destron says:

Since McDonalds (and fast food in general) is pretty much partly to blame for making everyone fat, I wonder how long it will be before the government steps in and forbids them from doing this stuff like the did with the cigarette companies when they used to give you points or whatever on the package to get free stuff.

Think about it… right now we are paying for all the cigarette related sickness and death, pretty soon it will be all the fat related death.

Sure, it’s all McDonald’s fault we are fat. It has nothing to do with society changes to keep kids inside more and playing less actively, nothing to do with wanting more food for less money, nothing to do with parents not wanting to raise their kids and tell them no they can’t have fast food, nothing to do at all with a lack of health education for children and teens. It’s all just that McDonald’s for supplying a demand for product.

• StuffThingsObjects says:

He makes a good point though: why impose one set of rules on a company yet allow another company to get away with essentially the same thing?

You have to remember that people’s idea of morality doesn’t always evolve past “Rewards? Sweet, I’m doing the right thing and should continue doing it!” Whether or not it is the government’s place to dictate what is and what isn’t allowable is up for debate, and I feel like most Consumerist readers would tell Big Brother to stay the hell away, but it’s still important to understand the psychological implications behind marketing strategies and what they ingrain in people.

All that aside, people just need to ‘vote with their wallets’.

• osiris73 says:

STOP MAKING SENSE!! Jesus, don’t you know where you are? God… take a look around you and smell the patchouli scented roses.

The problem with that is unhealthy food is does not come with a high chance of cancer like cigarettes do. Also, it is incredibly hard to tell with even possible “fat” related illness what is cause by eating and what is cause by lifestyle i.e. not exercising enough, bad portion control, medication interactions. So no you can’t treat McDonalds like Phillip Morris because they don’t even come close in terms of direct correlation from product to illness. That is why I brought up the points I did. Until we seperate society causes from food causes (which is still iffy since you can eat unhealthy food in moderate portions and suffer no bad effects at all) you can not treat them as the root of all evil.

• DrXym says:

It’s not just one thing that makes people fat. But clearly having drive thru restaurants on virtually every corner (pizzas, burgers etc.), selling oversize portions of food (often with XL options heavily promoted), food dripping in fat, is a major contributor.

What strikes me is that McDonalds seems so resistant to offering more healthy options. They pay lip service but otherwise it’s business as usual. I do not believe for a second they could not reformulate some of their products without materially affecting the taste.

How is it a major contributor? Are these places going out and forcing people to come in and order food? Is it law that you must stop at every single fast food place you see? Is there a minimum order amount required at these places of 20 dollars? If not then no it is not a major contributor, people’s choices are.

• BlkSwanPres says:

There are just as many gas stations, but I don’t get gas at all of them.

• LunaMakesThings says:

2. McDonald’s food isn’t any worse for you than many sit-down restaurants. McDonald’s, and fast food in general, get the brunt of the blame for classist reasons. Same reason Wal-mart gets pilloried for the same practices that other big stores get away with. If poor people shop there, then there must be something wrong with it, so the privileged will find any reasons they can to look down on it.

3. Salt, fat, and sugar are not poisons and are in no way equivalent to the actual toxic chemicals found in cigarettes. Too much salt, fat, and sugar can cause problems, but the definition of “too much” will vary by the individual and it is not up to you, or anyone else, to decide what “too much” is for another grown person. Decide for yourself, and your kids, but for no one else.

• ninram says:

I have been NEVER eaten at a fast food restaurant, being a Kosher observing Jew, and somehow became overweight.

It’s lifestyle. And mine became very stressful over the last decade and I ballooned up.

Now I take responsibility and have started reversing that. by eating healthy and not living a sedentary lifestyle.

16. Vandil says:

The real win is not eating at McDonalds in the first place. No amount of money or prizes is worth the harm that food does to your body.

• XTC46 says:

So you wouldnt eat a bigmac if you got 1 Million dollars for it? I call shens.

• leprechaunshawn says:

Big Macs are delicious. I eat them even when there aren’t prizes available. To me, the reward IS the Big Mac!!

• XTC46 says:

I dont disagree. I dont eat them regularly, but once in a while it is what I want. My point was the guy above was full of crap. There absolutely an amount of money that is worth “the harm that food does to our body”. And its a hell of a lot lower than 1mil. I bet if somone said here is 10 bucks, eat this free big mac, he would do it.

a single burger from Mc Ds is not going to hurt you (unless you happen to be allergic to an ingredient) Hell, you could eat a big mac, a extra large tripple thick shake, and a large fries and there wouldnt be lasting damange (althought it would be way too much food for most and they would feel sick) but that would be due to volume of food, not the food itself.

17. minjche says:

Yikes! It’s creepy when numbers are put to something like this.

18. misterfweem says:

Why is anyone even surprised at these odds? Last I heard, games and promotions like this were meant to sell product, not enrich the masses enticed into buying the product. Y’all are treating McDonalds like it’s supposed to put a gold bar inside each Happy Meal or something every time this contest comes up.

19. YouDidWhatNow? says:

What kills me about the Big Macs is that they differ from a McDouble by one slice of cheese, one half a bun, a bit of lettuce and then salad dressing instead of mustard & ketchup.

I’m going to SWAG that the cost difference to McD’s is about \$0.30.

‘Cept a McDouble costs \$0.99 and a Big Mac costs \$3.29.

Been a long time since I had a Big Mac.

• leprechaunshawn says:

The McDouble @ \$1 is probably a loss leader while they make money on a Big Mac.

• YouDidWhatNow? says:

I can’t imagine anything on the dollar menu is a loss leader…I don’t ever see anyone order from the dollar menu and then get a Big Mac too, or whatever. Pretty much either you’re eating from the dollar menu, or you’re not.

• Extractor says:

You get hooked on the dollar menu when you order \$5 worth. 2 burgers and 2 chickens and drink. No reason not to only use \$ menu. Fries still a rip.

• XTC46 says:

A big mac also has lettuce, bigger patties, pickles, and a larger bun. There is certainly a difference in what you get, but yea, the big mac, id wager, is a hell of a lot more profitable than the McDouble.

• YouDidWhatNow? says:

I don’t think the patties are different – look the same to me. I noted the extra half a bun, and the McDouble already comes with pickles.

The net difference is as I described above.

I found an article from 2009 stating that, from franchisee interviews, the double cheeseburger at \$1 netted about 6 cents of profit (when it was on the dollar menu). Granted, the McDouble then came in with one less slice of cheese, and with costs going up, it’s maybe about the same. Probably varies by market…maybe it is a loss leader in LA while it makes a nickel in Omaha. At any rate…it’s clear that you’re getting raped if you buy a Big Mac.

20. kdui says:

Whatever, guys. I love McDonald’s.

21. mexifelio says:

Uhm, how many McD’s Monopoly stories you gonna run with, Phil?

22. JollyJumjuck says:

Eat as much as you want. Unless you’re lucky, you’re never ever win.

23. spaceface says:

I can’t believe you are trying to justify obesity by blaming the media. We shouldn’t embrace obesity and make it OK.

You sound like a McDonald’s representative.

24. shoan says:

we got lucky we won \$50 on a cup of coffee so count us ahead. And did not have to eat a single burger for it. :D

25. crazydavythe1st says:

whoa. It’s a site that has something of a handle on statistics. It’s kind of shocking to not see people making the false assumption that the odds being 1:500 for example means that you’re going to have to play 500 times before you can win.

26. Fafaflunkie Plays His World's Smallest Violin For You says:

Why do we never find out who won the \$1M playing McNopoly? Probably because no one ever does?! Not since the scam the company printing the game pieces pulled off back in the early 00s have I ever once see/hear Mickey D’s announcing a \$1M McNopoly winner. Sure there was that cover-our-ass moment where there was that “someone somewhere at random at one of our locations will be handed a million dollars” contest, but really, who ended up with the big prize?

• enalzi says:
• BeFrugalNotCheap says:

Are you serious? That link just goes to a page featuring MODELS, not REAL PEOPLE. They’re working for the marketing department. How dare you post that link? How DARE YOU?

27. an educated consumer says:

I occasionally eat at Mc D’s. It’s cheap eats and fast. However I don’t need a marketing promo like winning game pieces for big prizes. They have been running them for years. I think your chances of getting better food is about the same as winning anything worthwhile. the only good thing about their food is if you have constipation, it tastes better than Metamucil. Btw I never saw any winners posted anywhere in the media. I guess I missed the fine print on the obits pg in the paper. The announced the winners posthumously.

28. jim says:

eh, you could as well do a story on lottery tickets. The ultimate in stupidity. As an example, people will not buy tickets with no chance of winning, say 30 million. But after a certain number is passed, say 100 million, they go nuts and start buying. Now logically, winning 30 million or 100 million, both will change your life in a dramatic fashion. Another dumb concept is that of the office pool as increasing the odds of winning. Well, everyone in a state can buy a lottery ticket and their odds will most likely still not break 50%. Everybody in the entire country could buy a ticket and there likely would only be 2 winners (megamillions, 1 in 175 million)

29. filmbuffy says:

It’s crazy. I didn’t think my parents collect those things. But my mom has a small addiction to McCafe. She won a bunch of stuff!! She won \$5 Walmart gift card, Medium fries, and a Mocha or whatever its’ called. With only 8 game pieces?? I was really surprised. I have a theory that different states have different prizes. She is in MI. I’m going to New Mexico and Montana for work, my friend and I wanna test out our theory. Doubt it though. It’s just one of those things if you happen to eat at McD during the promo time,—fine, but I’m not going out of my way to get game pieces!

30. steveliv says:

I remember a long time ago, McDonalds had a Dick Tracy promotion, I must have been 9 or 10. You would get a scratch off card to play. One day we were eating at McDonalds, and a worker left a stack of the cards on the counter. Suffice to say, my friends and I enjoyed free mcdonalds food for the rest of the summer. I feel bad about it now, but ah the foibles of youth.

31. teamplur says:

“\$500 whopping dollars “

read out loud >>>> [five hundred dollards whopping dollars]

32. \$@ndm@n says:

When I was a kid they would put the board and pieces in the weekend newspaper when the monopoly promotion started and I heard of people who would hit up all of the newspaper vending machines and pull them all out and and with all of the free food items he would eat McDonalds for like 2 months for free from all of the free food instant win pieces

33. dush says:

People don’t seem to get it. You don’t actually have to eat the food.
In face it would be funny if a group who wanted to play the game just bought a bunch of tickets and left the food on the counter and walked out.

34. BeFrugalNotCheap says:

Did any of you ever think that perhaps McDonalds simply doesn’t LIKE you and want to limit the number of pay outs? Why bother then?