10 Foods That People Say Restaurants Always Mess Up

Man not enjoying food
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Imagine a world where mashed potatoes are always fluffy, pizza dough is always crispy, and hamburgers are always juicy. Where chicken breast is never dry, steak is always cooked to perfection, and pasta is always al dente.

That world doesn’t exist. It’s enough to make a food lover cry.

But don’t take my word for it. Here we embark on a culinary escapade as we uncover gastronomic disappointments that might just rescue your taste buds from a lackluster symphony of flavors. These are the foods that people find commonly underwhelming.  

Consider this your menu ordering survival guide, ensuring you don’t unwittingly squander both your hard-earned coins and precious caloric budget on these impostors. Do you agree with these selections? Let us know in the comments what foods you find constantly being askew from your tastebud expectations.

So get ready to be astonished because the truth is, there’s a lot of bad food out there you pay a premium for being served.

French Fries

French fries served in a fast food
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One comment hit the spot: “They’re either weirdly soggy or too dry and crunchy. My personal favorite fast food fries is probably WingStop b/c even though the texture may vary the seasoning makes up for it. McD’s would be #1, but they don’t really have that secondary point [like the seasoning] to compensate for the variation in cooking quality.”

Some complain about undercooked or overcooked fries, while others appreciate specific fast-food chains for their unique seasoning.


Facial expression of man eating with disgust grilled sasusage outdoor. Vegetarian feeling pain and suffering trying meat. Pork is bad. Recycled dead animal. Tasteless fried food. Adult male biting
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This comment pretty much sums up most of the BBQ in the Midwest from my experience: “Lotta nasty BBQ out there drowning in sauce to try and cover it up.”

Opinions vary on BBQ, with discussions ranging from preferences for specific places to criticism of restaurants named after states not known for BBQ.

Onion Rings

Onion Rings
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“I can usually tell by how the breading looks. The biggest issue I always have is the onions end up so tough that after the first bite you end up ripping the whole *** thing from the breading.”

The struggle with onion rings includes issues with tough onions and suggestions for improving them at home.

Caesar Salad

Homemade Healthy Romaine Caesar Salad with Dressing and Croutons
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“It either has barely any dressing, or it’s so drenched in dressing that it pools at the bottom of the bowl.”

Criticisms about Caesar salads focus on the inconsistent dressing levels, with suggestions for a well-balanced salad.


Homemade Breaded Fried Calamari with Marinara Sauce
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“Calamari. Often overcooked into rubber. At least here in the Midwest.”

Midwestern struggles with seafood quality are highlighted, with many expressing disappointment in overcooked calamari.


Herb omelette with chives and oregano sprinkled with chili flakes, garlic panini toasts
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“I straight up refuse to order an omelette at a restaurant. They’re usually overcooked and almost always disappointing.”

Omelet disappointment is a common theme, with some preferring to make their own to ensure quality.

Grilled Cheese

Grilled Cheese
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“Don’t get Reddit started on grilled cheeses. Hence the rant being copy-pastaed.”

Grilled cheese discussions include a warning about Reddit’s passionate debates on the topic.


Plain Hashbrowns
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“I said the same thing. When you ask for them well-done they just burn the outside and leave the inside raw.”

Complaints about undercooked and greasy hashbrowns are shared, with a specific mention of Waffle House’s consistently good hashbrowns.

Pad Thai

Chicken pad Thai dish of stir fried rice noodles with a contemporary presentation.
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“Many places make it way too sweet. It’s hard to find Pad Thai that isn’t just sugar noodles.”

Criticisms of excessively sweet Pad Thai are discussed, with some sharing preferences for alternatives like tofu or seitan.


Cheese Fries
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“Poutine. It’s trendy to stick fries, with cheese and a sauce and call it that, but you can’t really substitute any of the ingredients and have it taste anywhere near the original.”

Discussions on authentic poutine involve debates on the necessity of specific ingredients like fresh cheese curds and the right kind of sauce.


Coffee cup and beans
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“Coffee is rarely good in a restaurant.”

Complaints about the quality of restaurant coffee are widespread, with some sharing experiences of brewing fresh coffee during their shifts as waitstaff.

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie
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“Chicken pot pie. Do they really think I don’t want top AND bottom crust?”

A complaint about the lack of both top and bottom crust in chicken pot pies, with humor about the importance of the crust.

Huevos Rancheros

Huevos Rancheros
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“Raw corn tortillas do not taste good for one thing. There is an art to it.”

The art of making huevos rancheros is discussed, with specific emphasis on the importance of properly cooked tortillas.


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Corey Turner
Corey Turner, owner of FurBallFun.com, draws on a lifelong love for dogs and extensive pet ownership to offer a unique perspective in the pet industry. With a successful background in project management, he excels in critical analysis, precise attention to detail, and quality assurance. This expertise allows him to effectively differentiate true value from marketing hype in the pet sector. Corey’s contributions have been featured in various publications including Rockery Press Guide Books and WealthofGeeks.com. During his free time, he enjoys disc golfing, rock climbing, and bonding with his cherished FurBall friend, Harvey.