McDonald’s brings back adult Happy Meals with nostalgic McNugget Buddies

The Kerwin Frost Box includes the choice of 10-piece Chicken McNuggets or a Big Mac, fries, a soft drink and a special McNugget Buddy collectible, coming back for the first time in over 25 years. (Credit: Provided / McDonalds)

After more than 25 years, McDonald’s is bringing back a nostalgic Happy Meal collectible that many enjoyed as children in the late 1980s and 1990s. 

The fast food giant last week announced the return of adult Happy Meals with a modern take on the beloved McNugget Buddies, which were first introduced in 1988 – best known for their wacky adventures and personalities, and interchangeable outfits.

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The new Kerwin Frost Box, which will become available in the U.S. starting on Dec. 11,  includes the choice of 10-piece Chicken McNuggets or a Big Mac, fries, a soft drink and a special McNugget Buddy collectible.

The new McNugget Buddies were designed in partnership with Kerwin Frost, a creative director and DJ from Harlem known for his work within fashion and music. Frost found his McNugget Buddy collection to be a source of creative inspiration as a kid, the company said. 

"Complete with mix-and-match outfits, the Buddies' designs are inspired by Kerwin's childhood experiences and belief that everyone should feel free to express themselves," McDonald’s said. 

The new McNugget Buddies include a miniature version of Kerwin Frost, in addition to Don Bernice, Uptown Moe, Waffutu, BRRRICK and Darla. 

Last year, McDonald’s partnered with fashion and product line Cactus Plant Flea Market to make another adult Happy Meal – dubbed the "Cactus Plant Flea Market Box." The meal came with four collectible McDonald’s figurines to much fanfare, and even some reported chaos at restaurants.

"With last year's Cactus Plant Flea Market Box, we unlocked the childlike joy of opening a Happy Meal box for fans of all ages," Tariq Hassan, McDonald's USA chief marketing and customer experience officer, said in a statement. "Fans told us they wanted to celebrate that quintessential childhood experience again."

Fans will also be able to get McDonald's x Kerwin Frost merchandise, including a variety of items featuring the McNugget Buddy collection and vintage pieces from Kerwin's own archive, the chain said. The items will also be available starting on Dec. 11 on, while supplies last. 

Meanwhile, McDonald’s is also rolling out a "mcflurry" of changes to its burgers nationwide. The chain said "small but tasty" improvements will be made to the Big Mac, McDouble burger and its classic cheeseburger, double cheeseburger and hamburger.

The burgers will also feature a juicer caramelized flavor from adding white onions to the patties while they are still on the grill, and more sauce will be added to its Big Macs, McDonald’s said.

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This story was reported from Cincinnati.