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    25 Menu Items That American Chain Restaurant Workers Heavily Advise Against Ordering

    Don't ✍️ get ✍️ the ✍️ chili ✍️.

    Every time you eat at a restaurant, it comes with certain risks you wouldn't face if you made your own food at home. Chain restaurants in particular are known for the quick (and low-cost) way they churn out orders, which can often result in some low-quality eats.

    A while back, Reddit user u/CraveKnowledge decided to be a real one, and asked restaurant chain workers to share the dishes we should "not order, and why." Here are 28 menu items redditors think you should avoid at all costs:

    1. "Seafood specials or buck-a-shuck oysters. It means my seafood delivery is tomorrow, and I'm trying to get rid of my old stock."

    2. "Those deep, dark, corner menu items. For instance, if you're at a place that specializes in seafood, and there is a burger on the menu. If you're ordering something that they do not specialize in, then why would you even go there in the first place. I'm not going to go to the local Mexican joint for a plate of spaghetti."

    3. "At the last restaurant I worked at, I would never order the adult burger. The child burger was the same size and $2 cheaper."

    4. "I worked at Denny's for years. Everything comes frozen (even the avocados, which are then microwaved). The gravy is powder-stirred into boiling water, and the nacho meat is microwaved."

    5. "Ice almost anywhere. Unless you've seen people take apart the ice machine and scrub the whole thing out, there is definitely mold in those."

    6. "As a prep and grill person for a burrito chain that advertises its lack of GMOs, I would say chicken. A lot of cooks tend to undercook it, so you get some raw pieces."

    7. "I have heard many chefs saying not to order the fish on a Monday, as they get their last fish order of the week on Friday, and they don't get a new one until Tuesday."

    8. "ANY of the wings from Sonic. It is our lowest-quality meat. Just ask for some popcorn chicken with wing sauce on it."

    9. "NEVER order a steak well done. I guarantee you that the chef will pick the oldest, shittiest meat from the back of the shelf. You'd be better off ordering a burger."

    10. "Don't order house-made chili or gumbo. It's just the meats we couldn't sell in the last week, ground up and thrown into a pot with beans and spices to disguise the fact that the meat's a little wonky."

    11. "Never get a dirty martini. Multiple bartenders just stick their hands inside the olive jars, then pour that into your drink."

    12. "Anything with bacon bits or shredded cheese (like a loaded potato). They just sit in the open, and people snack from them."

    13. "Stadium snack bar. So many to avoid, but one in particular: popcorn with butter. I used to work a booth in a stadium. When getting ready for the day, we opened the lid to the 'butter' warmer and scooped out the dead bugs that were at the top of the semi-solid sludge before turning it on."

    14. "Lasagna. Every place I’ve worked it’s been a pre-made meal that gets reheated in the microwave."

    15. "'Fresh squeezed' lemonade. That shit is not squeezed. It comes in a jug that's mixed with equal parts sink water."

    16. "Before you order soup of any kind, check to see if they're made from scratch on site. In every place I've worked at that sells soup, it comes in a bag, and we'd heat it up in boiling water or a steamer, then sell it at a huge markup. The product quality is honestly terrible. When you open the bags of soup and pour them for service, they all smell the same."

    17. "Free samples of anything boxed or jarred are usually expired product that stores are trying to get rid of."

    18. "Anything with gravy. Gravy is very difficult to keep at a safe temp, while also keeping it the correct consistency."

    19. "Don't get something that has avocados late at night — they'll be brown and mushy. Avocados are generally prepped in the morning before lunch and not another time during that day unless they run out."

    20. "Don't order bread pudding at a fucking restaurant, you guys. It's a garbage dessert. It's old bread soaked in eggs and heavy whipping cream and baked off who knows how long in advance. Make that shit at home with your own bread."

    21. "Any type of 'bar' citrus. They tend to have a lot of bacteria from people who haven’t washed their hands and don't use tongs to grab them."

    22. "Smoothies that aren’t from a smoothie shop. They’re extremely simple and way overpriced."

    23. "Chicken lettuce wraps. Yeah, they're amazing, but they're made out of the leftovers and remnants of the chicken used for the actual entrees. They're almost entirely made out of fat and gristle."

    24. "I used to work for a local pizza chain. I was never told what was in the Alfredo sauce, but I WAS told that if I knew I would puke."

    25. And finally, "I worked a lot of food service jobs — never get tea. Ever. Not unless someone you know works there and tells you they take amazing care of the tea urns. The rubber seals that people neglect in the nozzles are basically black mold."

    Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.