If you’re of a particular age, it is almost a certainty that you
dined ate at a Burger Chef. If you’re younger, then you may not have ever heard of the one-time fast food giant.
Back in the 1970s, Burger Chef was second only to McDonalds as far as fast food franchises went. Burger Chef was a hit and as a result their investors were earning returns where 50% wasn’t unheard of.
Burger Chef’s popularity was because they served a comparable (some would say even better) meal than other fast food joints and Burger Chef was making innovative moves. Burger Chef was the first with…
- Funmeals: geared towards kids. Each Funmeal came with a sandwhich, small fries, small drink and a toy! Five years later McDonalds started serving Happy Meals using the same concept.
- Works Bar: Burger King said you could have it “your way”. Burger Chef took things a step further with the Works Bar. Each Works Bar contained everything you might want to doctor up your sandwhich!
- Salad Bar: Burger Chef offered a fully stocked salad bar and this was waay before the health craze hit.
- Media Tie-Ins: Burger Chef saw the importance of media tie-ins and so they made deals linking their food to kid popular franchises like Star Wars and The Brady Bunch.
I worked at a Burger Chef when I was in college. I’ve shared this story before but if you missed it or would just like to revisit it, check out Star Wars, Burger Chef, Mike Kott and Me.
I have good memories of the folks I worked with and the food we served at Burger Chef. It’s too bad the chain didn’t survive. MeTV posted What ever happened to the Burger Chef chain? that explains their rise and fall. Since you’ve read this far, you’d probably enjoy it.