Vintage McDonald’s: See 5 decades of the famous fast food chain’s retro restaurants, menus & history

Note: This article may feature affiliate links, and purchases made may earn us a commission at no extra cost to you. Find out more here.

Vintage McDonald's - 5 decades of the famous fast food chain restaurant

Note: This article may feature affiliate links to Amazon or other companies, and purchases made via these links may earn us a small commission at no additional cost to you. Find out more here.

Take a look through time at these vintage McDonald’s restaurants of the 20th century — the food, menu boards, uniforms, old ads and retro architecture — starting back when fries were 10 cents in the ’50s, to the “unique” food concepts of the ’90s.

Early McDonalds menu: The drive-in with the arches (1950s)

McDonald’s Amazing Menu

Pure Beef Hamburger: 15c
Tempting Cheeseburger: 19c
Triple-Thick Shakes: 20c
Golden French Fries: 10c
Thirst-Quenching Coke: 10c
Delightful Root Beer: 10c
Steaming Hot Coffee: 10c
Full-Flavor Orange Drink: 10c
Refreshing Cold Milk: 12c

Simple old McDonald's menu from the fifties

Vintage McDonald's with big golden arches


Vintage McDonald’s menu from the 50s/early ’60s

You can taste the quality in every food on the McDonald’s menu

Old McDonald's menu from 1950s


McDonald’s history & architecture

1960s: McDonald’s golden arches blend with the elegance of brick and cedar in this sophisticated new building design

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1960s (7)

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1960s (5)

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1960s (6)


Customers at tables in an old-school eating area

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1960s (1)

DON’T MISS: Vintage McDonald’s Shamrock Shake TV ads


Jimmy’s mother knows McDonald’s hamburgers are 100% beef (1969)

McDonald's hamburgers 1969


Ronald McDonald in clownface: No, he’s not scary at all

Ronald McDonald in 1969


 

Back where “you want fries with that?” was said hundreds of times

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1960s (3)


Close-up: Old McDonald’s menu board from 1969

Hamburger: 20 cents
Cheeseburger 25 cents
Filet-o-Fish: 35 cents
Milk: 5 cents
Coffee: 15 cent

McDonald's menu in 1969


Vintage McDonald’s cashiers with paper hats & black bow ties

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (7)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (4)

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 70s (2)


Scenes from vintage McDonald’s kitchens

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (6)

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (3)


The classic McDonald’s restaurant design in the late 1960s

Below the golden arches, the sign said “Over 5 billion served”

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1960s (2)

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 100 vintage 1960s supermarkets & old-fashioned grocery stores


Feed the family for four dollars (1972)

At McDonald’s, you get a Big Mac, fries, a chocolate shake, a cheeseburger, fries, a Coca-Cola, a fish sandwich, fries, an orange drink, a hamburger, fries and a strawberry shake. For less than $4.00.

Vintage McDonalds ads from 1972

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (3)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (8)

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (10)


Man does not live by bread alone (1973)

McDonald’s Quarter Pounder. The sandwich where the meat really takes over.

Vintage McDonalds food from 1973


Outside dining tables at Mickey D’s

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (8)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (9)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (7)


Little kids loved McDonald’s!

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 70s (4)

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (9)


Kids hanging with Ronald McDonald and talking garbage cans

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (2)

Old Ronald McDonalds with kids and a field of hamburgers


Scenes of indoor dining at vintage McDonald’s restaurants (1970s)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (10)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (1)

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (2)

MORE: Remembering the old Next Door Restaurant chain from the ’70s


’70s fast food around the world

Retro McDonalds stores in the 70s (5)


Date night at the ol’ Mickey D’s

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 70s (1)

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (1)

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (5)

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (6)


Taking the teacher out to dinner (1973)

Not long ago, one kind, one court jester, one witch, one damsel in distress, one villain, three peasants, one knight and shining armor and one dragon took their third grade teacher out to dinner.

Her Big Mac, fries and strawberry shake cost each of the kingdom’s subjects about eleven cents. A mere pittance.

Vintage McDonalds ads from 1973

Vintage McDonald's fast food restaurant 1970s (4)


A fish story that’s easy to swallow (1973)

McDonald’s Fish, Fry ‘n Pie Dinner.

Try out Filet O’Fish Sandwich — a flaky fish filet, special sauce and cheese on a tender bun. A large order of McDonald’s world-famous French fries. A hot apple pie. And a large soft drink. That’s McDonald’s Fish Fry & Pie Dinner. It’s a great fish story you’ll believe as soon as you taste.

Vintage McDonalds ads from 1973 (2)


Smile & say cheeseburger (1973)

Vintage McDonalds ads from 1973 (1)

ALSO SEE: McDonald’s introduced the Big Mac, then created a jingle for it that we couldn’t forget


At McDonald’s, we serve you the real thing (1973)

At McDonald’s, our policy is to serve you the best products we can. So to serve our great hamburgers with a second-class soft drink — well, we just wouldn’t have it. Coca-Cola — It’s the real thing.

McDonald's drinks in the 70s (2)

McDonald's drinks in the 70s (1)

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 1970s (10)


Old-fashioned McDonald’s burgers from 1976

Old-fashioned McDonald's burgers from 1976


McD’s: Quality is makin’ it (1976)

Makin it with ground beef that’s 100% pure and leaner than most beef you buy at the store… Makin’ it with fish that’s U.S. government inspected… Makin it with potatoes that are U.S. #1…

Makin’ it with care and attention, so you always know what you’re getting… Makin’ it fast, so you get it good and hot… Makin’ it so good that you know McDonald’s is quality you can taste.

McD - Quality is making it - burgers - 1976


Good morning, America! Breakfast menu options in the ’70sMcDonald's breakfast food - 1978


Retro McMuffins and breakfast platters

Old styrofoam containers, plus cups of coffee and orange juice

Vintage McDonald's resturants in the 70s (3)


You deserve a break today

Forget about cooking. And washing dishes. And a hard day at the office. Or a hard day at anything. Get away to icy cold Coke, triple-thick shakes, our famous golden French Fries, Filet 0′ Fish Sandwiches, Hot Apple Pies, and big Big Macs.

Get up and get away to McDonald’s. It’s just the kind of break you deserve today. Or any day. So get up and get away to McDonald’s.

McDonald's hamburger meals in the seventies


100% Pure beef. Pure pleasure. (1973)

That’s what you get in every Quarter Pounder with cheese sandwich. A lean and unmistakably good taste of 100% pure, domestic beef including cuts of chuck, round, and sirloin. No fillers. No additives. Simply pure lean beef, leaner than the ground beef most people buy.

And for cheese lovers, there’s not one, but two melted slices of our rich and golden cheese. All tucked into a freshly toasted, sesame seed bun. Its your Quarter Pounder with cheese. And we make it 100% for you.

Vintage McDonald's hamburger from 1978


McDonald’s food from the 1980s

McDonald's food in the 1980s (1)

McDonald's food in the 1980s (2)


Scenes from an old McDonald’s store in the eighties

Vintage McD play place for the kids, back when they had mini-merry-go-rounds.

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (3)

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (4)

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (5)

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (6)

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (8)

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (1)

Old McDonald's resturants in the 1980s (2)

ALSO SEE: Vintage KFC: About Colonel Sanders & the Kentucky Fried Chicken fast food chain’s history


McD Salads: Tossed fresh. Tossed crisp. Tossed all day long.

We start with fresh, crisp vegetables and greens. And we toss them together all day long. That’s how we make sure every salad you order is as fresh as we can make it.

Because experts agree vegetables and greens are at their nutritional best when they’re fresh. So at McDonald’s, you’ll find our Chef Salad, Chicken Salad Oriental and Garden Salad being tossed fresh, cool and crisp all day, every day.

Any other way just wouldn’t be as good. Or as good for you. For more information about our salads, and all our menu items, ask your McDonald’s Restaurant Manager, or call our Nutrition Information Center at (312) 575-FOOD. It’s a good time for the great taste of McDonald’s

Vintage McDonald's salad ads from 1987 (3)


Vintage ’80s McDonald’s: Our new food group.

We’ve got some very good reasons to call out three nutritious new salads our new food group.

Our crisp, tasty Chef Salad, Chicken Salad Oriental, and Garden Salad make it easier than ever to balance your meal at McDonald’s. They’re a fast, convenient way for you to include vegetables in your diet. They help you get more vitamins, minerals and nutrients.

And help your visit to McDonald’s fit nicely into your daily, weekly, and long-term diet planning. So next time order a salad with your meal. Or just order a salad. Either way is good for you. And fine with us.

For more information on our salads, and all your menu items, ask your McDonald’s Restaurant Manager. Or call our Nutrition Information Center at (312) 575-FOOD.

It’s a good time for the great taste of McDonald’s

Vintage McDonald's salad ads from 1987 (1)


We shop where you shop

Hunt’s, Kraft, Vlasic, Gorton’s, Sara Lee, Keebler, Coke, Quaker, Tyson’s, Carnation and McCormick spices. And many others. We buy trusted brand names just like you.

Vintage McDonald's salad ads from 1987 (2)

ALSO SEE: Check out 100 vintage 1970s supermarkets & retro grocery stores


McDLT ad from 1987

Vintage McDLT ad from 1987


McDLT: The hot stays hot, the cool stays cool

It’s the tastiest way to enjoy delicious, cool lettuce, tomatoes and cheese a hot 1/4 lb* beef patty on a sesame seed bun!

The lettuce stays crisp, the tomato firm and juicy because our special package keeps the trimmings cool on one side and the hamburger hot on the other side…until you put them together!

The long-lost McDLT burger from McDonald's


McDLT ad featuring Jason Alexander before Seinfeld (c1985)


McDonald’s food from the 1990s: Egg McMuffin

McDonald's food from the 1990s (7)


Did somebody say McDonalds?

McDonald's food from the 1990s (1)

MORE: Vintage 7-Eleven stores: Remember the old days of Slurpees, to-go coffees, movie rentals, arcade games & more


Filet-O-Fish: Back by demand

Your favorite Filet-O-Fish sandwich is back… bigger and better than ever! Crispy on the outside, tender and flaky on the inside. Plus that famous, tangy tartar sauce with American Cheese!

McDonald's food from the 1990s (2)


Spanish language McDonald’s menu board in Boston area (1991)

From The Boston Globe (Boston, Massachusetts)16 Jun 1991
From The Boston Globe (Boston, Massachusetts) June 16, 1991

Scenes of a ’90s McDonald’s restaurant

Retro McDonald's restaurants from the 90s (3)

Retro McDonald's restaurants from the 90s (1)

Retro McDonald's restaurants from the 90s (2)

 

 

 

CSI TV show star Eric Szmanda in McDonald’s ad from 1996

Eric Szmanda in McDonald's ad from 1996


Mornin’ Break: Coffee & hash browns – plus a bacon, egg & cheese biscuit sandwich

McDonald's food from the 1990s (3)

McDonald's food from the 1990s (4)

McDonald's food from the 1990s (5)

McDonald's food from the 1990s (6)

MORE: Vintage Taco Bell restaurants & what the Mexican fast-food chain used to serve

PS: If you liked this article, please share it! You can also get our free newsletter, follow us on Facebook & Pinterest, plus see exclusive retro-inspired products in our shop. Thanks for visiting!

More stories you might like

Because the fun never ends

Comments on this story

Leave a comment here!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.