We all know that if you were a kid getting treated to McDonald’s you were already pretty happy, but then you got a toy with your meal and things couldn’t get any better. Mickey D’s officially implemented the Happy Meal in 1979 and although they had given away toys before, this now meant there would be new toys in constant rotation and different ones for each theme, so you just had to keep coming back for more. Admittedly the ’80s saw some wicked Happy Meal toys but the ’90s definitely had the best. This list won’t only take you on a trip down memory lane but you won’t believe how many of these were some of your favorite toys even though they came as a side-piece to your hamburger meal. We’re definitely lovin’ it.
12. Berenstain Bears Books (1990)
If you grew up in the ’90s and didn’t learn at least some of life lessons from a Berenstain Bears book, then you didn’t learn life lessons properly. Definitely not the most exciting toy but Happy Meals were awesome and so were the Berenstain Bears so win-win.
11. Mini Furbies (1999)
To this day no-one is quite sure why the Furby was such a popular toy in the first place. It was annoying and in all honesty, mildly creepy, like a distant cousin to The Gremlins scary. Still the big versions were a hit and so a “free” little one of course went over great.
10. Tiny Toons Toys (1991 and 1992)
Tiny Toons actually had a couple rounds as the toy of the Happy Meal and both were awesome. The Flip Cars were downright genius, one character on one side, flip it over and BOOM brand new character, this never got old. Just in case that wasn’t annoying enough for parents, Tiny Toons made their return with noise maker cars, wind-em and watch-em go as little domes attached to the cars rattled little balls around that let out merciless noise.
9. Little Mermaid Floating Toys (1997)
Disney and McDonald’s have quite the partnership going which meant every awesome Disney film had its turn with its own set of toys. A lot of them were plush, which was okay, but The Little Mermaid toys were above and beyond. Not only were they gold but they floated because duh! mermaid, best idea ever.
8. Sky Dancers (1997)
While a lot of the time kids could equally enjoy the toys there were several instances when the Happy Meal give outs were separated by genders. Girls (and boys if they wanted) got one of the best with the mini Sky Dancers toys. The bigger versions were a must for Christmas presents but the little ones were just as much fun and came with McDonald’s food. ’90s kids were winning long before Charlie Sheen.
7. Mighty Ducks Pucks (1997)
Apparently 1997 was the peak year for the Happy Meal as it was also when we got the Mighty Duck Pucks. The cartoon was awesome even if it did feature alien type ducks and the pucks actually held up to quite the beating. Eat your McDonald’s and then go play hockey, at least exercise was being promoted!
6. Disney Masterpiece Figurines (1996)
Things were so much simpler in the’ 90s because we knew how to have fun and love toys that really didn’t do much. Disney once again had kids screaming to go to McDonald’s again and again to collect all of the figurines for the Disney Masterpiece Collection. Not only did you get a figurine, it came in a Disney VHS box. Old school awesome.
The McDonald’s changeables debuted in 1989 but things got even better in 1991 when not only did your favorite McDonald’s “meal” changed, it changed into a dinosaur. McDino Changers were actually pretty awesome pieces of technology for the average kid considering it was 1991.
4. 101 Dalmatians Figurines (1997)
McDonald’s not only increased business by handing out toys with their kids meals, but also by having collections which made kids want to get them all before they rotated out. Well, with a kid’s film entitled 101 Dalmatians, that left room for A LOT of figurines of one set. They were all incredibly adorable as well, there might have actually been 101 of them.
3. Batman Cars (1992)
Before Batman went on hiatus, Michael Keaton was the caped crusader and since the movies were so amazing, McDonald’s matched it with amazing toys. You could get a Penguin “umbrella” car, a Batman jet/car, a Catwoman car and of course the batmobile which could actually split into two to attack the enemies.
2. Space Jam Plush Toys (1996)
These “toys” were so cool they were basically the elite of McDonald’s toy hand-outs. First of all you had to pay extra for them and second of all the restaurants only carried one at a time, so you couldn’t quickly and obsessively try to get them all. Space Jam really was that cool, well it still is.
1. Teenie Beanie Babies (1997)
To think that there was a time when children went crazy over such a simple plush toy seems ludicrous now when stuffed animals are not even considered real toys by today’s youth. In the ’90s absolutely nothing was better than collecting Beanie Babies, while we were excited for the Happy Meal we couldn’t give a crap until we got our Beanie Baby. They were smaller than normal Beanie Babies but they had the legitimate tag and that’s all that matters. All about the status.