When you don’t have any expectations, you can’t get disappointed. But when there’s an advertisement for a delicious meal shoved right up in your face but you get served a big pile of cheap-looking cooking, you can’t help but get angry.

Nobody expects picture-perfect food at restaurants. However, some of these meals are so incomparable to their ads, Bored Panda just had to show you side-by-side examples. Check them out below, upvote the most egregious cuisine lies, and let us know about the times when a restaurant has made you swear like a souped-up version of Gordon Ramsay.

We’re not talking just about fast food here. Restaurants in seemingly good standing are also known to violate the most basic tenet of human relations ever: don’t mess with someone’s food. (Though, come to think of it, can you really expect anything good from places that have pictures of food on their menus? Kidding! Haha! Just kidding! Please don’t hurt me, Picture Menu Restaurant Mafia.)

#1

My "Cookies And Cream Stuffed French Toast" From Ihop

My "Cookies And Cream Stuffed French Toast" From Ihop

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Leroy Fong
Community Member
1 month ago

look like someone took a sh*t on it

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#2

I Ordered Bruschetta From My Local Pizza Shop

I Ordered Bruschetta From My Local Pizza Shop

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Foxxy (The Original)
Community Member
1 month ago

That monstrosity doesn’t even deserve the name bruschetta.

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#3

Cheese Fries From Buffalo Wild Wings

Cheese Fries From Buffalo Wild Wings

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Rose the Cook
Community Member
1 month ago

Is the cheese colour natural?

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As I see it, there are two main problems when it comes to sloppy reality being far from the picture-perfect gourmet meals you expect to receive. And they have a lot to do with our expectations. The problems are all about the actual cooking standards and the way food adverts can raise our expectations too high.

The first issue is very human: sometimes, the people making your food don’t 'five a guck' about what you’ll get served or they mess up and decide to put the meals out anyway. They might be overworked and burned out. Or they might be lazy and inattentive.

The solution here is simple (and incredibly hard at the same time)—the kitchen staff need to find the inner motivation to take pride in their work. Meanwhile, management needs to maintain acceptable standards. If you wouldn’t eat something you make, why would you expect your customer to? It’s better for the food to be late but presentable instead of rushed and disappointing.

#4

This Steak Salad That Looks Nothing Like It's Advertised

This Steak Salad That Looks Nothing Like It's Advertised

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Samantha Lomb
Community Member
1 month ago

The second looks like when you throw all the leftovers in the fridge together at 2 am because you have the munchies

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#5

This Is So Outrageous

This Is So Outrageous

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Erin Presley-Froemke
Community Member
1 month ago

Jameson and Ginger had been online dating for a while, when the day came where they would finally meet.....

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#6

Subway Pizza

Subway Pizza

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Rose the Cook
Community Member
1 month ago

Is the base uncooked?

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The second problem, however, is directly related to how things are advertised. What you see on the menus are the ‘perfect’ versions of meals that restaurants want you to see. While some restaurants go for amateur snaps, others go all out and hire professional food stylists to turn grub into glamor shots.

Food styling is an art. Pros can end up using a whole array of tools, from tweezers and tape to blowtorches and paint. So when you take so much time and effort to create a work of art, can somebody in the kitchen who is under pressure really deliver something that’s comparable? Sometimes? Yes! Always? Dear Lord, no.

#7

Menu vs. What They Served Me. No, Millennials Didn’t Kill Appleby’s, They Committed Suicide

Menu vs. What They Served Me. No, Millennials Didn’t Kill Appleby’s, They Committed Suicide

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Lyra Fortune
Community Member
1 month ago

The title though! 😂

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#8

Taco Bell’s Grande Stacker Box

Taco Bell’s Grande Stacker Box

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Rose the Cook
Community Member
1 month ago

They forgot the filling.

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#9

Burger King Grill Dog Cheddar And Bacon

Burger King Grill Dog Cheddar And Bacon

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Adam C
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

for one second I thought the sausage was missing.

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#10

Part Of A $3.50 School Lunch. Picture On The Menu And What Was Served

Part Of A $3.50 School Lunch. Picture On The Menu And What Was Served

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postboredom
Community Member
1 month ago

School lunch?!?!? Seriously? Those poor kids..

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#11

A Texas Sized Disappointment

A Texas Sized Disappointment

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BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Apparently, they don't know the meaning of the word BIG.

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#12

The 3 Pieces Of Lettuce Was A Nice Touch I Guess

The 3 Pieces Of Lettuce Was A Nice Touch I Guess

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

its a taco which shows you its future

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#13

Dreams Were Dashed At The Airport

Dreams Were Dashed At The Airport

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Rose the Cook
Community Member
1 month ago

Weight watchers version.

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#14

Grilled Salmon At The Mall Food Court

Grilled Salmon At The Mall Food Court

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Rose the Cook
Community Member
1 month ago

Looks dried out.

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#15

Expectation vs. 2020

Expectation vs. 2020

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BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Sums up 2020?

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#16

Taco Bell, I Try To Love You, So Why Do You Treat Me This Way??

Taco Bell, I Try To Love You, So Why Do You Treat Me This Way??

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Phoebe Bean
Community Member
1 month ago

Shred Chicken BLur (I hardly see it!!)

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#17

Restaurant’s Charcuterie Board As Advertised vs. What I Got

Restaurant’s Charcuterie Board As Advertised vs. What I Got

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Call Me Mars
Community Member
1 month ago

Now you know they have a sponser from Babybel!

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#18

Damn, I Am So Looking Forward To Eating This Delicious Burger With Copious Amounts Of Guacamole, Just As Advertised, And Then- Oh Wait..

Damn, I Am So Looking Forward To Eating This Delicious Burger With Copious Amounts Of Guacamole, Just As Advertised, And Then- Oh Wait..

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Ray Ceeya (RayCeeYa)
Community Member
1 month ago

You don't remember the great avocado shortage of 2017?

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#19

Tim Hortons New Fruit Loop Donuts

Tim Hortons New Fruit Loop Donuts

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BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

All the other Froot Loops left, because they were ashamed.

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#20

Jack In The Box Tacos

Jack In The Box Tacos

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Samantha Lomb
Community Member
1 month ago

eww

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#21

Thanks KFC, Totally What I Expected

Thanks KFC, Totally What I Expected

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Lyra Fortune
Community Member
1 month ago

Okay but the first pciture is photoshopped af.

Duncan Ash
Community Member
1 month ago

just look at that chicken

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BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

The Colonel is spinning in his grave.

Jayda Estrella
Community Member
1 month ago

No bun can look that perfect

Pungent Sauce
Community Member
1 month ago

You got ‘food’ at KFC, you knew what would happen....

Bob Belcher
Community Member
1 month ago

That's why Popeyes chicken sandwich is better

FatBaby
Community Member
1 month ago

CHicken isn't even deboned XD

Bradly Briggs
Community Member
3 weeks ago

KFC lost it years ago

MimsLarson
Community Member
1 month ago

Is that a chicken LEG?!?

mikedtw
Community Member
1 month ago

If you chomped down on this joke, you might have ended up in the dentist's chair. Can you say "bone in bread"? Disgusting.

Doris Bennett
Community Member
1 month ago

EWWWWWWWW! Nasty!

Johanne Trudeau
Community Member
1 month ago

KFC has fallen so much in the past years. At least the ones near my home, I can't speak for any of the others. I refuse to go there anymore...

Billy the kid
Community Member
1 month ago

i love my KFC.

Vicki Perizzolo
Community Member
1 month ago

I've never had KFC that looked like the top one...I doubt they've seen the pic

Diane Phillips-Herman
Community Member
1 month ago

Last time I had KFC I gave them back their shriveled up bucket of chicken and told them they had to be joking.

Sylas Lockwood
Community Member
1 month ago

that is weirdly wrong

Daniele Ribolla
Community Member
1 month ago

I'm a KFC fan, but never seen a thing like this...

Cybele Spanjaard
Community Member
1 month ago

KFC? Well that franchisee needs to go back to their cooking school instructions.

Tom Hardeveld
Community Member
1 month ago

bleh

Oskar vanZandt
Community Member
1 month ago

TIP: always check your food before you leave the premises (I've learnt this valuable lesson).

Bacony Cakes
Community Member
1 month ago

Should've gotten the popcorn chicken.

Purezz
Community Member
1 month ago

Yikes...Is anyone else getting a photoshoped vibe there?

Janet Bird
Community Member
1 month ago

Even I would send that back!

Louchebert
Community Member
1 month ago

By accident the cook cut off the dogs tale. 'Oh dear, what to do with it??' he thought... well...

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#22

Fungi Toastie From Subway

Fungi Toastie From Subway

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Lyra Fortune
Community Member
1 month ago

Thats not even the same item!

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#23

Arby's Bacon Beef 'N Cheddar

Arby's Bacon Beef 'N Cheddar

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Phoebe Bean
Community Member
1 month ago

So... they don´t "have the meats" after all... (as opposed to the Arby´s tv commercials declaring "We have the meats")

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#24

The Tempura Green Beans Looked Delicious On The Menu. I Think They Fell A Smidge Short

The Tempura Green Beans Looked Delicious On The Menu. I Think They Fell A Smidge Short

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Lyra Fortune
Community Member
1 month ago

Looks like the grass my dog pooped out

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#25

The Burger I Ordered Tonight

The Burger I Ordered Tonight

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Hope Floats
Community Member
1 month ago

These companies really shouldn't be allowed to get away with this...

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#26

I Know It's Airline Food, But Sweet Baby Jesus United Airlines, Why Would You Let Someone Pay $10 For This?...

I Know It's Airline Food, But Sweet Baby Jesus United Airlines, Why Would You Let Someone Pay $10 For This?...

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BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Even the one in the ad doesn't look that great.

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#27

This Is Why You Check Your Food Before You Leave The Restaurant...

This Is Why You Check Your Food Before You Leave The Restaurant...

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Foxxy (The Original)
Community Member
1 month ago

You want pizza with that sauce.

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#28

So I Bought This New Burger From Burger K!ng...

So I Bought This New Burger From Burger K!ng...

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Olivia Agave
Community Member
1 month ago

They threatened it with the cheese.

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#29

When Reality Doesn’t Meet Expectations

When Reality Doesn’t Meet Expectations

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RaroaRaroa
Community Member
1 month ago

Eww. These must all be franchisee run businesses skimping for the biggest profit. I can only assume they live in highly populated areas where they can still survive, even if no one ever goes twice.

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#30

The Pico De Gallo Burger At Whataburger

The Pico De Gallo Burger At Whataburger

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Lyra Fortune
Community Member
1 month ago

Well... what a bugger.

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Note: this post originally had 69 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.

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