What do we think about when we think of McDonald's? The golden arches? Crisp french fries? Perhaps the delectable Big Mac hamburger? Maybe you remember the commercials of the sometimes funny and often creepy Ronald McDonald. Whatever you remember, the restaurant has been a fast food icon for decades, bringing families American-style food at reasonable prices. Their popularity has grown to the point that countries around the world have adapted the restaurant into their culture, adding their own unique twists and food items that reflect their country. However, there is one thing that as children represents McDonald's more than anything else on their menu. That one item is the Happy Meal.
Ah yes, the Happy Meal. A miniaturized version of the grown-up meals served in a cardboard box with the golden arches shining brightly for all children to enjoy. What made these toys special to children was not the food itself, but rather the promise of a fun toy that came with the meal. While usually just a small piece of plastic that reflected whatever pop culture phenomenon was happening at the time, these toys have become a staple of his iconic fast food franchise. So much so, in fact, that these toys are now worth a small fortune.
Some collectibles range from $50 to entire collections worth nearly $1K. However you look at it, these toys could make you a lot of money, so join us as we explore 30 McDonalds toys that are worth a fortune now. You will not believe what we have in store for you.
30 Potato Kids
Everyone knows Mr. Potato Head. Whether it's the original toys or the star of the hit Disney film Toy Story, the Mr. Potato Head line is an incredibly popular line. What is it about this little toy shaped to look like a spud that drives kids to toy stores?
Is it the way you can change the outfits and look of the potato? Perhaps it's the accessories that allow the potato to become whatever the child's imagination wants. Either way, these toys are extremely popular, and yet, it's true value is quite a surprise.
What may shock some of you though is that apparently, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head had kids.
In 1987 McDonald's introduced a line of happy meal toys that were miniature Mr. Potato Head toys, and there were a total of twelve designs. Today the entire set can go for up to $75 on eBay!
One of the most popular children's toys of the 90's was undoubtedly Furby. Despite having deadpan eyes and rock hard bodies with matted fur, the creatures were a staple of any 90's kid. They were so popular in fact that the restaurant with the golden arches paired them with happy meals, and today a collection of 8 recently sold for over $900 on eBay.
That's a lot of money for such a small and creepy toy.
The toys have a tendency to creep people out with their unblinking eyes, and it's been often reported that these toys have a habit of talking in the middle of the night. Whether it's from perishing batteries or something else is up for you to determine, but the point is it's incredible to see that these toys are being sold at such a high price. It's one of the most expensive collectibles from McDonald's.
28 Hakuna Matata
It means no worries, unless you want to buy these next toys. You see, The Lion King was one of Disney's most popular franchises, and finding toys from The Lion King II is pretty difficult these days. It was one of Disney's biggest movie successes at the time, and the story of Simba and the Pride Lands became such a huge phenomenon that the film has inspired toys, merchandise, books, and even a huge and successful Broadway show. With that in mind, it's no wonder that the franchise spawned a second film. Despite it not being as commercially successful as the first, toys from the Lion King II still managed to snag a spot in McDonald's happy meals, and now they have earned a place as a McDonald's collectible item worth a lot of dough. If you manage to find one, be prepared to pay a hefty sum of $50.
27 Beanies and Babies
In other words, Beanie Babies! These toys are one of the most prized toys to ever come out of McDonald's. Outside of the restaurant they earned quite a reputation as being highly sought after and adorable. These adorable bean-filled dolls were paired with happy meals in the early 2000's, and while experts predicted they'd be valuable in the future, no one could have imagined they'd be priced at over $400 for an average doll and over $750 for the rare Beary the Bear doll. You read that right.
A rare beanie baby, known as Beary the Bear, is being sold online for over $750.
How on earth is that possible? It's so strange to imagine that these toys of simple cloth and beans came together to form one of the collector world's most infamous fast food collectibles. So be ready to shell out a lot of money for these incredibly rare toys.
26 A Picnic Basket!
Hello there Mr. Ranger sir! That's right everyone, the beloved Yogi Bear and his adventures in Jellystone National Park are making an appearance in the rare collectible McDonalds toys. Despite the love the original Yogi Bear show from Hannah Barbera garnered from audiences around the world, not all of Yogi Bear's adventures were so beloved.
In fact, one show, in particular, proved to be kind of a hit and miss with audiences.
Although the show was a flop, the toys in happy meals for Yo Yogi are vastly popular and can fetch for an easy $100 now online. That's right, toys from a failed show still managed to become a huge financial success for collectors and sellers. Most people either hate or ignore the shows that fail like that, but the hardcore collectors are willing to shell out some serious dough for these highly sought-after toys.
25 More Than Meets The Eye
In the 80's, one of McDonald's most popular toys had to be the Transformers. Based on the hit toy line turned television and comic book franchise, the story of the Autobots and the Decepticons mesmerized kids. Their never-ending civil war that saw one faction fighting for peace and the other for total dominance of the galaxy, the toys were so popular that they currently have spawned an entire film franchise from Michael Bay. Yet, before their rise to fame in that regard, they first tried their hand at happy meal toys. That's right, the galactic robots fighting one another ended up becoming fun little plastic toys for McDonald's after all. They were unique because instead of vehicle robots, they were various food items from the restaurant that turned into robots. Now you can buy these toys for about $50 for a few of them.
When we think of collector's items being made out of old McDonald's toys, we tend to imagine toys from decades past, gathering dust in someone's garage and stumbling upon a fortune accidentally. However, some of these items are more current cash machines. That's right, toys from as early as five years ago are now worth quite a bit of money, especially when the toy in question comes from one of the world's most popular children's movies, Despicable Me. A more modern day fortune arrives from the minion toys McDonald's released with happy meals in 2013 for the film Despicable Me 2. The toys are so popular that the figure of Jerry the minion break dancing is worth $120. It's so strange to imagine such a relatively young toy becoming that popular, let alone garnering enough attention to give it such a huge monetary value. So next time you dismiss a new toy, don't. It could become worth quite a lot of money someday soon.
23 What's In A Theme?
It was said that back in the day if you couldn't get your hands on an American Girl doll, then getting a doll from Madame Alexander was the next best thing. I'm not sure if they were considered the knock-off version of American Girl dolls or were an equal competitor, but either way, these dolls were very popular with young children back in the day. These dolls often came with specific themes, and this McDonald's happy meal version of the Madame Alexander Disney dolls featured their dolls dressed as various Disney characters. From Minnie to Cinderella, these dolls showed their Disney spirit and were available in a wide range of outfits in character looks. These dolls now fetch for $130 on eBay. These are just the toys from McDonald's too. Can you imagine how much money the regular line of dolls is fetching? Especially without the old smell of fries on them.
22 This Is Halloween!
The toys in a happy meal aren't the only pieces of the puzzle that are now worth a fortune.
You see these magical toys and the meals accompanying them all came in special boxes.
While most of these boxes were just plain red with golden arches for handles, others were a little bit more elaborate. For some, it included pictures from the pop culture references that accompanied the toy itself. Other times McDonald's itself wanted to imprint their brand on a popular holiday-themed item, and this next piece of collectors paradise did just that. In the 90's and 2000's, McDonald's really upped their happy meal game by including the meal in a collectible Halloween glow in the dark bucket. Now, these buckets can be found being sold for over $100 a piece. That's quite a hefty price for a plastic container, but that's why collectors are in such a prized industry.
21 Go-Go Gadget
In the 70s, 80s, and 90s, one of the most popular animated franchises was none other than Inspector Gadget. Kids loved the action and adventure of the half man half robot detective, and he subsequently had a popular line of toys kept in happy meals. If you're looking to grab one of these limited edition happy meal toys, then you better be prepared to shell out up to $350. This is a toy that spans decades in popularity and has had time to grow in price and fame. Whether you loved the goofball antics of the character or were fascinated with the notion of a half man half gadget-wielding robot, these toys are highly sought after and can fetch you a hefty sum if sold today. It's easy to see why people hold onto their collectibles with an iron grip. They could just end up paying your way through college or something.
20 Happy Anniversary
Everyone loves Charles Schultz's Peanuts. The cartoon story of young Charlie Brown and his friends just trying to get through everyday life enraptured audiences around the world. Whether it's iconic moments like Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie Brown, Linus and Charlie waiting for the Great Pumpkin, or even the sad little Christmas tree that inspired the children to come together in harmony, the story of Charlie Brown has been around for decades. In the early 2000's, the 50th anniversary of Snoopy, Charlie Brown's beloved dog slash dog house fighter pilot, occurred and garnered his very own line of toys at McDonald's.
These toys now line up for over $100 a piece.
That's quite a way to celebrate the anniversary of one of the world's longest-running newspaper comics and it's star. If you managed to hold onto a few of these toys, expect a hefty sum coming your way.
19 Muppet Madness
Sometimes toys from shows can become popular. Other times the show spawns spin-offs that become even more popular than the original franchise, and their images and likeness become so revered that they become more valuable than their predecessor. That was the case for the Muppets, when a spin-off launched that drew a huge fan base that overpowered the original show and characters. From 1983-1987, a British and American show based on the world of the Muppets came to life and gained serious popularity. The show was Fraggle Rock, and the toys can be found in a set of four for over $200. That's right, over $200 is the price for these widely popular and rare McDonalds toys. The show Fraggle Rock has become a huge staple in children's programming, and iconic in its own right. It's no wonder a children's show so popular would spawn such a huge price tag on its toy line.
18 Surprise Babies
Kermit and Miss Piggy sure did drum up quite a lot of business, didn't they? Whether it was the films like A Muppet Christmas Carol or The Muppets Take Manhattan, or the ever popular show, The Muppets proved to be a mega successful and iconic franchise. Besides Fraggle Rock, the show also spawned Muppet Babies. You heard me right, Muppet Babies.
In the 90's, the Muppet franchise hadn't lost it's popularity.
In fact, it's popularity soared, and it garnered some attention at McDonald's when the toys being put into happy meals were Muppet Babies. Featuring childlike or baby versions of the characters, these toys have become a highly sought-after collector's item on the internet. These hunks of plastic now go for about $50 a piece. That's a lot of money for characters like Fozzie Bear, whose biggest claim to fame was his infamous Waka-Waka jokes on the show.
17 Use The Force
In a galaxy not so far away, the Jedi and Sith combined to bring together an epic happy meal box that is now worth quite a bit more money than was ever spent to produce it, to begin with.
This next item is quite shocking, to say the least.
In 2008 and 2009, McDonald's decided to partner up with the growing popularity of the show Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The show focused on the events between Episodes 2 and 3, with the Republic and Separatist forces fighting a galactic war that brought the Jedi into the role of military commanders, and started the path that would lead to the rise of Darth Vader himself. Rather than specifically make toys, however, the restaurant chain decided to make their happy meal boxes Star Wars themed. These boxes now can be found being sold at $50 a piece on eBay.
16 Valuable Dance
This next item is something we've actually discussed in a previous article. It was featured as one of the more dangerous toys parents didn't really know were dangerous, but apparently, their danger status hasn't had an impact on their monetary value for collectors. One popular toy that is now worth over $50 (more in its original packaging) is Sky Dancers. These toys (despite being dangerous at times), were popular dolls that when a button was pressed flew through the air. Their concept was pretty simple, and yet children loved these toys so much that they flocked to McDonald's to get a glimpse at the surprise waiting for them in their happy meals. It's amazing one small little toy was so popular and yet so dangerous that it's managed to retain its popularity through the decades, and in the process uses that popularity to get collectors to shell out a pretty penny for its purchase.
15 Puppy Overload
Nearly everyone around the world knows the story. A family of hundreds of adorable little pups comes face to face with a deranged fashion designer intent on destroying them for her own personal gain. The adventures of Cruella De Ville have become synonymous with villainy and even inspired some live action films in the process. Yet, nothing beats the original, especially when that original spawned hundreds of toys that are now worth a small fortune to whoever is lucky enough to have collected these plastic toys. In 1996, 101 Dalmatians was released to movie screens everywhere by Disney, and although they became more popular when it was released on VHS, the film was able to garner some big popularity points when McDonald's released it to their happy meals. Over 100 toys from the film were available to collect, and now the entire set can be sold for between $100-$200.
14 Pointless Toys?
Normally when children get a happy meal at McDonald's, it's because they are getting an awesome toy that is related to a specific film, show, or property. Whether it's a superhero movie getting their own toys or a popular cartoon mouse having a special anniversary, McDonald's is usually at the forefront of these upcoming popular franchises and becomes officially partnered with them.
However, what does the restaurant do when no films are immediately available to partner with?
Well in this next example, we see them go out on a limb and create something themselves. A small space of time in the 90's found there were no films, shows or any popular franchise getting ready to release anything, and so, McDonald's had to find their own toys to release. They released these toys called Space Rescue toys, and although they didn't do anything, they can now be found for over $100 a piece.
13 Madame Alexander Strikes Again
That's right, the popular doll line had another popular theme that now garners some big bucks. Previously we talked about how these American Girl doll competitors had made a name for themselves with their Disney themed happy meal toys. The Disney Princess themed dolls with their matching Disney outfits are worth quite a large sum online, and yet, the toy line managed to create yet another themed toy line with McDonald's that had young children begging their parents to buy them a happy meal. Madame Alexander's Alice in Wonderland themed dolls can fetch for a huge price of $300 online now. That's right, the story of young Alice falling through the rabbit hole straight into the multicolored world of Wonderland became a huge inspiration for the Madame Alexander doll line, and the dolls individually are worth quite a small fortune to whoever was lucky or smart enough to collect them.
12 Mystery Toy
Another prime example of McDonald's branching out with their own unique toys comes in the form of a mystery. Most toys come with simple yet enjoyable tales for children to follow. A line of robots fighting one another. Cowboys fighting off the law. Police officers chasing would-be hamburger robbers.
These children's tales drive their imagination and help them be creative going forward in life.
However what happens when the toy in question has no origin and wasn't quite explained to the public for consumption? This next toy is something no one quite knows about. Rumor has it they are meant to be underwater aliens, but the Deiner Keishi toys in happy meals in the 70's now can be found being sold for $400 on YouTube. The mystery of the toy no doubt added to the monetary value of the toys, and whoever was smart enough not to throw out the toys can now make a pretty penny.
11 It's A Me, Mario!
That's right Nintendo fans, Super Mario got the McDonald's treatment, creating six versions of Mario, Princess Peach and Yoshi all getting their own toys. Already having dominated the video game world and even with a shocking film that Nintendo fans have tried to forget, the world of Mario delved into the fast food industry, bringing a chance for children to own a small piece of the characters they spent hours staring at a screen playing as. Taking the family-friendly and action-packed video game franchise and developing a small children's toy out of it was no easy feat. It takes a lot to peel children away from a screen and get their imaginations working with a small piece of plastic. It's no wonder the toys themselves fetch for such a huge sum of money now on the internet. These toys can now fetch for $100 a piece online.
10 Fast Food Theater
A blast from the past. That's how I would describe this next item on our list, and it's going to surprise a lot of you how something made so cheaply and so old can be worth a small fortune to some of you. This is another instance of forgoing the toys at McDonald's and instead focusing on the packaging the meals came in. A 60's era happy meal box known as Ronald McDonald Theater Takeout Box is a huge collector's item for fast food buffs. This box retails at $99.99 on eBay right now, despite it just being a piece of nearly sixty-year-old cardboard. It's amazing to see that such a small package could be worth that much. It makes you wonder if you should be saving all of our colorful food packages in the future, for they could end up being worth quite a lot of money.
9 Batman Pride
Now it's time to move on from toys and packaging for a bit and look at some of the restaurants' decorations that adorned their front windows. You see it wasn't only about the toys, the food or the packaging at McDonald's. Sometimes it was all about the experience you were given while there. Whether you went to a McDonalds with an indoor playground and watched your kids play or were given a box with a crossword puzzle for you and your little one to solve, getting a happy meal at McDonald's always guaranteed you something unique and special. This included the displays that drew you into the restaurant, to begin with. You can save about ten bucks if you opt for this next item rather than the theater takeout box. For $89.99, you can grab the storefront display for Batman: The Animated series, which hung in the front window of McDonald's stores.
8 Disney Magic
Outside of the happiest place on earth, McDonald's took the reigns from Disney and their amusement parks by including a special happy meal toy line that celebrated the iconic companies anniversary. The 100 years of Disney toy line at McDonald's fetches quite a price these days on the internet. At $5 a piece, these figures of Disney characters can be collected and sold for nearly $1K for an entire set. Selling several of these can garner some big bucks as well. So it doesn't matter if you have the whole collection or just a handful, these small chunks of plastic ended up being quite a money making service for those who had the foresight to save them for a rainy day. Who would have ever thought small plastic versions of Mickey, Donald, and Goofy, could be added up with the rest of the Disney family for such a hefty price tag?
7 Classics Gone Wrong
While Disney has been known to adapt several classic stories, Victor Hugo's The Hunchback of Notre Dame definitely doesn't have the same child-like appeal of say Beauty and the Beast. The story of Quasimodo, the hunchback child taken in by a power-hungry religious fanatic and forced to live in the bell tower of the infamous Notre Dame in Paris has been one of the most iconic pieces of literature in our culture. Disney's version took this story, and added talking gargoyles, a tragic love story that failed to give the main character the romantic ending he deserved, and brought about one of the most visually compelling films that Disney had made up until that point. Yet, the villain was haunting, and his actions deplorable. Despite it being a little too scary at times for children, the collectible set of the film at McDonald's fetches for nearly $200 online these days.
6 Bulk Ponies
That's right people, you knew at some point we were going to come to this point. Of all the franchises McDonald's has worked with, no one has worked with the fast food franchise more than this next one.
One of the most popular children's series has to be My Little Pony.
Whether you love the original series or you are a hardcore Bronie, the franchise has been featured many times as a collectible happy meal toy. Now, however, you can buy these toys in bulk online. A pack of 150 toys can sell for $100 (plus shipping and handling). So if you are a die-hard fan who can't get enough of the small little plastic ponies, then you can buy a whole bunch for just the measly sum of $100. Or if you have a bunch of these toys already, bundle them together and sell them. You'll fetch quite a price.
5 Finger Puppets
That's right, McDonald's got in on the creepy factor and created their own finger puppets in 1993, featuring Ronald McDonald and the Hamburgler. While the appeal of small cloth dolls on a person's finger has alluded me for years, it's more about the price these toys fetch that continues to baffle me. The toys value is baffling not only because of what kind of toy they are, but because they are centered around two of the McDonalds mascots and not any particular popular franchise that normally is featured in the restaurant. These toys can now be found online for $39.02 a piece. While that's not as much as the other toys we've found here, the fact that such a small toy could garner such a hefty sum, to begin with, is pretty amazing. So if you happen to find these toys laying around in your house somewhere, get yourself a quick $40 and sell them.
4 Heir To The Beanie
The legacy left behind by the Beanie Baby toy line is something that has stuck around even today. People loved collecting those little toys, which inspired spin-off toys, sports-themed Beanie Babies, and even knock-offs. Yet, throughout the years, the Beanie Baby line has only continued to increase in value on the internet, and a new line of Beanie Baby in the 90's manages to garner nearly as much money as the original line.
In 1997, McDonald's came out with new beanie babies known as heirs.
If you happen to have all 10 of these toys in mint condition, you can sell them now for $370 on eBay. What is it about this toy line that is so valuable? Whatever it is, the dolls are worth quite a lot of dough, so I'd start looking through old boxes now if you want to cash in on these valuable items.
3 Go Go Power Rangers!
That's right, it's the franchise that launched a legacy. The story of teenagers called upon by an ancient power to use superpowers granted by him to fight evil threats like Lord Zed, Rita Repulsa, and Ivan Ooze, is one that has enraptured children for decades. The rangers all came with different backgrounds and adopted the power of whatever animal or creature was featured within their series. The original franchise spawned several generations worth of spin-off shows and has garnered its own universe of storytelling. The Power Rangers was one of the most iconic franchises in the 90's, and McDonald's cashed in on their success by having an entire line of Power Ranger action figures in their happy meals. They even had a ninjazord toy you could collect. Each of these toys fetches for $35 on eBay, so if you have the entire collection prepare for a nice payday.
2 World Tour
We've already talked about the mega-successful franchise, Peanuts. The children in the world created by Charles Schultz are iconic in their own right, as are the items or pets they are associated with. Linus and his blanket. Pigpen and his dirt cloud. Lucy and her psychiatrist stand. These are all a big part of why the franchise is such and a hit, and we can attribute these iconic characters and items to the success Charles Schultz experienced. In 1998, McDonald's decided to capitalize on the success of the Peanuts franchise by making a new toy line. That toy line was Snoopy World Tour happy meal toys, and the entire collection is currently being sold online for $315 on eBay. Snoopy and friends seem to be making quite a huge impact even today on the world of collectors and are worth quite a pretty penny now, so don't miss out if you have these rare toys.
1 Today's Hot Toys
The biggest shock of all comes from a toy that just released last year at McDonald's. Kids found themselves collecting Teenie Beanie Boos, the newest form of Beanie Babies to hit happy meals. Coming out in 2017, you can find people selling these toys to serious Beanie Baby collectors for around $50 a piece.
That's a lot of money for a brand new toy kids can get for free.
It's just amazing to see such a brand new toy garnering that big of a price tag. Whether it's the name and legacy of the Beanie Baby toy line or the rate at which collectors in this new digital age are so freely willing to shell out money, I'm not sure. However, there's no question that these toys are worth quite a lot of money, and are more likely than not only going to increase in value as the years go on.