McDonald’s China dishes up coriander-flavoured ice cream

The bizarre flavour instantly became a hot topic worldwide.

Nicki Chan

Probably that one person singing in the shower at 2am.

Published: 25 February 2022, 1:13 PM

McDonald’s China served coriander ice cream for just five days – but it was enough to launch the internet into a heated debate about the flavour. 

“Coriander gang, raise up your hands, the fresh and sweet coriander sundae has arrived,” said McDonald’s China in a statement on Feb 18. 

Released for a limited time from Feb 21 to Feb 25, the dessert consisted of McDonald’s classic soft serve ice cream, drizzled with a green coriander sauce and topped with the herb itself. 

The taste is sweet and sour with a strong coriander fragrance, McDonald’s China said. 

The dessert set off a visceral response after Twitter user ZhugeEx posted about it, with many commenters reacting with disgust. 

“Might as well put soap in a cup,” tweeted one user. “This is a crime against humanity,” said another. 

However, some praised the dessert, and others expressed interest in trying it. 

“Cilantro ice cream is really f***ing good.  Anyone who hasn’t tried it should – spicy + sweet/creamy does amazing things on your tastebuds,” one user said about the combination despite not having tried the McDonald’s version. 

Another said: “As a massive cilantro fan, I desperately want to try this once things warm up. Anyone seen these in Hong Kong?” 

Coriander is known as cilantro in the United States.


The ice cream was available at 6.6 yuan, or around S$1.40. PHOTO CREDIT: XIAOHONGSHU/MCDONALD’S


Coriander is extremely contentious, although widely used. Hatred for the herb even inspired a Facebook group in 2013 that eventually branched out to sell merchandise. The group now consists of over 280,000 members. 

The same group created an unofficial anti-celebratory occasion, I Hate Coriander Day, which falls on Feb 24 – incidentally coinciding with McDonald’s coriander ice cream release. 

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Posted by I Hate Coriander on Thursday, 24 February 2022

This is not the first time McDonald’s has developed wild food combinations – last year, it released a chilli oil version of the same sundae.  

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