Burger King Japan: Kuro Burger

Kuro Burger with fries
Nicholas Datiche / Sipa / Shutterstock
Black burgers were popular a few years ago.

If you’re feeling health-conscious in America, you might order your burger on a brown whole-wheat bun rather than white. That’s about it as far as colors go.

Japan has no such restraints.

Burger King released the Kuro (“black” in Japanese) Burger back in 2012. The company mixed bamboo charcoal into the dough to create the jet black bun, while squid ink was used to give the ketchup its dark color.

Strangely enough, this isn’t the only black-bun burger to ever hit the market. McDonald’s China released its own black bun with white sesame seeds, while the European chain Quick released another inspired by Darth Vader.

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Pizza Hut Middle East: Crown Crust Cheeseburger Pizza

Burger patty crust on pizza
Pizza Hut Middle East / YouTube
An even more artery-clogging pizza.

Pizza Hut has grown and spread rapidly after setting up its first parlor in Wichita, Kansas in 1958. The company now has 14,000 restaurants all around the world and, instead of keeping to standard Italian-American fare, caters to different tastes in different countries.

That said, the Crown Crust Pizza that debuted in the Middle East back in 2010 is a little questionable. Instead of the normal ring of bread, the crust on this monstrosity is studded with mini burger patty “gems” topped with cheese. Fit for a king — and probably his whole army, too.

McDonald’s Netherlands: Maestro ‘Truffel’ Deluxe

Double patty burger
McDonald's Nederland / YouTube
Don't personify burgers.

Going from gluttonous to gourmet, McDonald’s in Europe has a whole collection of Maestro Burgers. They cater to the fancier fast foodie, featuring upscale ingredients including truffles and foie gras.

What makes the line especially strange was the decision to give the burgers human names in certain countries. Try not to lose your lunch as you bite into a Magnificent Maurice, Brutal Brutus or Juicy Jane.

We are fond of Frisky Fran and Goosey Gustav, though.

Burger King Spain: Fondue Burger

Hamburger with extra cheese sauce
Burger King Espana / YouTube
There is such a thing as too much cheese.

A nice slice of softened cheese on your burger is usually welcome. An entire ladle full of goo, perhaps less so.

A healthy glob of fondue cheese is used as the sauce inside the burger, but you also get an additional side helping for more cheesy goodness. The promotional picture looks rather bizarre, as a stream of fondue drips on top of the bun. Seems messy to eat.

While it isn’t available on the Spanish website anymore, the Fondue Burger was also available in Japan for a limited time in 2015.

McDonald’s Italy: McShrimp Burger

Shrimp patty in bun
McDonald's Italia / YouTube
Shrimply delicious.

Put “Mc” in front of any food, and it will instantly grab your attention. The company has one powerful brand.

There’s actually some confusion about the McShrimp, as the name applies to different dishes depending on where it’s made. Residents of Italy knew the McShrimp as a breaded shrimp-meat patty inside a bun, while residents of Russia knew the McShrimp as a breaded-shrimp side served with a variety of sauces.

Either way, for anyone who loves seafood and was sick of the regular Filet-O-Fish, this could have been a tasty alternative.

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Indonesia KFC: Salted Egg Chicken

Fried chicken in egg sauce
kfcindonesia / YouTube
Eggy and salty.

While salted egg sauce might sound strange, even a little unappetizing to some Westerners, salted eggs are a popular Indonesian treat. It’s the pairing with the quintessentially American KFC that raises an eyebrow.

Even though the snack was released in 2018, part of the company’s “Taste of Asia” campaign, the dish had been in research and development for about two years. Apparently, KFC wanted to get the flavors just right when it took its crunchy deep-fried chicken and slathered it with egg sauce.

McDonald’s Hong Kong: Satay Beef Twisty Pasta

Beef and twisted pasta
McDonaldsHK / YouTube
Selling pasta at a burger joint.

What do you see when you hear the name McDonald’s? A Big Mac, hot salty fries and a cup of cola?

McDonald’s Hong Kong thinks you should envision a satay beef dish with twisted pasta and veggies in a bed of broth. While this item isn’t particularly weird, per se — it sounds delicious, honestly — it’s pretty off-brand for the McDonald’s most Americans know.

A few variations have been introduced, including the Grilled Chicken, Ham N’ Egg and the Sausage N’ Egg Twisty Pasta, which features an egg and sausage patty on top.

Burger King Israel: Doughnut Burger

Burger bun with ketchup on top
Burger King Israel / YouTube
Dinner and dessert combined.

To celebrate Hanukkah at the end of 2016, Burger King decided to combine what it does best (burgers) with a traditional Jewish doughnut (sufganiyot) to create the SufganiKing.

Don’t worry, the doughnut bun has a mostly savory flavor, and the blob on top is ketchup, not jelly. As for whether the white dusting is flour or sugar, we’ll leave that to your imagination.

The doughnut burger is not a wholly new invention. People have been gorging on so-called Luther Burgers, made with Krispy Kreme doughnuts instead of buns, for some time stateside.

KFC Arabia: Chizza

Heart shaped chicken pizza
BabbleTop / YouTube
Two great tastes that taste great together.

“All Chicken. No Crust.” That’s the slogan for KFC’s Chizza.

Similar to the company’s infamous Double Down, this heart-shaped pizza has had the crust replaced with a crispy chicken patty. The crunchy pizza became available in the Philippines in 2015, then Singapore in 2017. It was so popular it expanded to Japan.

Of course, KFC Japan decided to put an Asian twist on the already twisted Chizza. It created a Korean-inspired amalgamation using bulgogi: thin, marinated slices of beef. Fans won’t have to tell you bulgogi is usually served on rice with vegetable side dishes, not on top of a chicken-based pizza pie.

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McDonald's Japan: Pumpkin Spice Fries

McDonald's pumpkin spice fries
McDonald's Japan/Twitter
The pumpkin spice must flow.

And you thought America had finally pumpkin spiced everything: almonds, Twinkies, deodorant. Looks like we missed deep-fried potatoes.

McDonald's Japan tested out this seasonal treat in fall 2016. The pumpkin-spice drizzle on the Halloween Choco Potato is actually just an addition to the restaurant chain's chocolate-covered McChoco Potato fries, which were introduced earlier that same year.

At least this is one weird item you can easily recreate at home. Grab a large order of McDonald's fries, a bottle of chocolate sauce and some ground cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves. The glory, disappointment and regret will be all yours.