The McFlurry is a brand of flavored ice cream distributed by the international fast food restaurant chain McDonald's and first sold in Bathurst, New Brunswick, Canada in 1995. It was then introduced to restaurants in the UK in 2000. It is similar in some respects to Dairy Queen's Blizzard.
McFlurry consists of whipped, soft-serve McDonald's vanilla-flavored ice cream in a cup. The McFlurry has a specially designed spoon with a hole in the handle which is attached to a blender. Sprinkles or various types of candy are added to the cup, which are then blended using the spoon. McFlurry flavors vary from market to market, and new flavors are introduced regularly.
The ice cream in a McFlurry is the same that McDonald's uses for its cones and sundaes. The ice cream is made from UHT milk, extended with methylcellulose. CNBC reported that, beginning in the fall of 2016, McDonald's started phasing out artificial flavors from its vanilla ice cream. The change was part of an effort to recover the more than 500 million customer visits it had lost since 2012.
Despite calling the McFlurry "a quick-serve medley of gelatinous, innocuous ice cream that some reviewers might consider closer to caulk than dairy," Wil Fulton of the Thrillist ranked the M&M McFlurry at the end of his list of the 17 Best Fast Food Desserts.The Daily Meal put the Oreo McFlurry on its list of the Best Fast Food Desserts.
Prior to September 2006, McFlurry container lids were of a size that caused some animals to become trapped with their heads inside the container. A small outcry in the UK, particularly to protect hedgehogs, caused a redesign in the container shape. After "significant research and design testing," the size of the opening was reduced to prevent entry of these animals.
The program 30 Rock prominently featured the McFlurry in the plot of its season 3 episode 11 show called "St. Valentine's Day." The intentionally heavy-handed product placement caused a controversy in the media.