Trying to save money and eat healthier? It’s not always easy, but this mom found a way by making homemade Happy Meals at home!

My kids LOVE McDonald’s – who am I kidding? I love McDonald’s! But since we are staying home, saving money and trying to eat better, we don’t get it very often.

McDonalds happy meal on a table.

McDonalds Happy Meals

With that being said, if you have a kid that constantly asks for a McDonald’s Happy Meal, you HAVE got to see this genius hack from Mom Tanesha Baldwin.

This mom has figured out how to “trick” her son into thinking he was eating McDonald’s. In reality, she made the chicken nuggets and fries right in her own kitchen oven. Genius, right?

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Happy meal box that is red and yellow with rainbow letters.

McDonalds At Home

Tanesha Baldwin posted on Facebook when she came up with the brilliant idea saying:

My son loves McDonald’s. ? But let me tell you who ain’t finna be running cross that street everytime he wants “chiccy nuggets and fren fwies” ?????

Like the innovative mom I am, I got a solution for allat!!! 

Tanesha's son loved happy meals so she makes them homemade with shoestring fries, and Tyson chicken nuggets, and cookies.
Tanesha Baldwin

She continued saying:

“I made sure he ain’t tear up the boxes like he usually do ? and I saved the containers. Today he holla he want “Donald’s.”OK, bet!!!! I had the whole meal already in the freezer, the trick was to make sure it’s shoe string fries cuz the little crumb snatcher knows the difference?”

-Tanesha Baldwin

Make Your Own Happy Meal

She had the Tyson Frozen Chicken Nuggets and Frozen Shoestring French Fries. She then baked them without her son knowing and stuffed them inside the McDonald’s containers she kept.

Tyson chicken nuggets are a great substitute for the chicken nuggets in a happy meal.

She then told him they were being delivered (I mean, this is entirely believeable nowadays) and he totally thought it was legit.

Oh, and of course she included the toy!!

Happy Meal toys individually wrapped
Samut Prakan, Thailand – June 28, 2020 : A photo of toy cute Minions, Minions character plastic toys from McDonalds\’ Happy Meal set on table

I don’t know about you but I find this GENIUS. Plus, since everything is baked, it seems to be healthier than fried McDonald’s food and it’s totally cheap too.

If you have a kid that seems to only eat McDonald’s you have to give this a try! I know I am going to!

Inside the happy meal with Tanesha's son holding the box looking very happy.
Tanesha Baldwin

How To Make A Happy Meal

This is such an amazing idea and will save money in the long run, plus, you can always switch it up a bit to ensure they’re eating other things. However, you don’t want to trick them too much, because they’ll probably be able to tell and if they like something that isn’t on the menu then it may be an issue down the road.

But McDonalds has some options for their Happy Meals.

Mcdonalds logo, the giant golden M against the blue sky
McDonald’s Restaurant Location. McDonald’s is a Chain of Hamburger Restaurants around the World

Happy Meal Options

The two choices you have for Happy Meals is chicken nuggets and hamburgers. Apples are an option for a side as are French fries.

Drink wise you can often get water, Honest juice boxes, or small jugs of milk or chocolate milk.

These are easily enough to keep on hand and put together!

Happy Meal Ingredients

Animated happy meal box on a table next to chicken nuggets, a drink, and a shrubbery.
Happy meal set on desk in front of McDonald`s restaurant and cafe

Happy Meal Box

Tanesha mentions she is very careful with the box, but just in case something does happen…McDonalds released a template to make your own Happy Meal Box!

While most boxes can be easily reused, it may not be so easy with the hamburgers. Or if something happens to the boxes here are some thing you can use in a pinch!

More Lunch Fun from Kids Activities Blog

Check out more mom hacks from us!

Did you make your own McDonalds Happy Meal at home? What did you include?

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