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The McDonald's McRib Sandwich Is Coming (Baby) Back In A Big Way

For the first time since 2012, the fast-food chain will release its famed BBQ rib sandwich nationally.

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Mark your calendars. On December 2, McDonald's will be rolling out McRibs across the US. 

McDonald's | Facebook

What's the big McDeal, you ask? The McRib (which consists of a boneless pork patty shaped like a miniature rack of ribs, barbecue sauce, onions, and pickles) is a cult classic among McDonald's fans, a cultural phenomenon, and the subject of countless memes. This is the first time since 2012 that the restaurant chain has released the sandwich nationwide. 

Credit: Quickmeme

The news was first leaked by the website McRibGate, which tracks all things McRib and publishes stories on customers' greatest McRib Moments. Editors there got ahold of an internal document McDonald's sent to franchisees about the McRib's imminent arrival.

Related: McDonald's Releases Its First New McNugget Flavor in 40 Years, and Wendy's Cries Fowl

A storied history

The McRib was first introduced in 1982, shortly after the Chicken McNugget made its debut. But unlike the omnipresent McNuggets, the McRib is a limited-release menu item. Each year, often in the fall, McDonald’s announces the appearance of McRibs at select franchises. For instance, a quick peek at the McRib Locator app reveals that you can now purchase one in Hamilton, Montana. 

But this year is different. As of December 2, the McRib will be available in all 13,000 plus McDonald's franchises across the country. 

Good news in a terrible year

The nationwide release this year comes as McDonald’s U.S. sales rose nearly 5 percent in its latest quarter, according to CNBC. On the stock market, shares of McDonald’s have risen 6 percent so far this year. McDonald's is hoping the buzz around the McRib will help fuel sales in a year that has been challenging, to say the least, for the restaurant industry.

Related: Is Your Local McDonald's Ice Cream Machine Broken? Check the McBroken App

"There's nothing quite like the taste of the McRib. To our customers, it's become more than a delicious, saucy moment… it's a season, and it's taking the internet by storm," said Linda VanGosen, McDonald's vice president of menu innovation, in a statement. "That's why this year, we're proud to serve the McRib nationwide for everyone to enjoy."

But McRib fans better hurry up. McDonald's plans on taking it off the menu on January 15. 

Jonathan Small

Written By

Entrepreneur Staff

Jonathan Small is editor-in-chief of Green Entrepreneur, a website and magazine focused on the cannabis industry. He is also an award-winning journalist, producer, and podcast host of the Green Entrepreneur and Write About Now podcasts and the founder of Strike Fire Productions, a premium podcast production company with clients such as SAG-AFTRA and Purely Elizabeth. He had held editing positions at Glamour, Stuff, Fitness, and Twist Magazines. His stories have appeared in The New York Times, TV Guide, Cosmo, Details, and Good Housekeeping. Previously, Jonathan served as VP of Content for the GSN (the Game Show Network), where he produced original digital video series.