Do not anger the people who are in charge of your food. Let’s repeat that so even those in the back hear it: do not anger the people who are in charge of your food. Food service employees are human beings and deserve the respect of their customers. Unfortunately, some customers are so rude that they end up practically begging to be given a taste of their medicine.

The restaurant workers of Reddit opened up about the very worst things that they’ve seen done to a customer’s order in a surprisingly honest thread. From waiters and cooks doing horrible things to the food to get their revenge to tales of awful fails on the employee’s part. There’s also a story about pickles being added to random burgers.

Read on for some saucy restaurant gossip and don’t forget to upvote the stories that left the biggest impression on you, dear Pandas. Oh, and if you’ve ever worked in the food service industry, we’d love to hear about the best and worst things you’ve witnessed. Tell us all about it in the comments.

#1

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Wanted extra mayo so I maliciously complied by drenching it. Lady thought I would forget her fake $10 prayer tip the last time she was there.

Dumfk , insatiablemunch Report

Redditor u/RegulatoryCapturedMe’s thread on r/AskReddit drew in a large crowd and ended up getting over 33.5k upvotes. The stories were as insightful as they were entertaining, and odds are that they’re bound to make some customers reconsider how they treat waiters and cooks from now on. On the flip side, it’s also a wake-up call for anyone who messes with customers’ food for no good reason.

Before you start putting random things into the meal to mess with a rude customer, remember that this might end up hurting more than just their pride. Food allergies are a very real, very dangerous thing. And they're becoming more frequent. Restaurant staff need to be aware of any potential allergies that customers might have, as well as understand that sticking a dirty finger into someone’s dinner can cause anaphylactic shock if the person is allergic to nuts. They also need to reduce the possibility of cross-contamination between ingredients.

Bored Panda reached out to food expert, pie artist, and author Jessica Leigh Clark-Bojin for her take on how to best deal with this danger as a customer and what to do to protect your health when dining out.

#2

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants At my last restaurant job, my coworker would make very ugly sundaes for customers who were rude. For particularly nice customers, she would painstakingly recreate the sundaes in the menu pictures and give them extra cream and sprinkles.

Disobedient_Bathing , VD Photography Report

Autumn Artemis
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The polite little kids at my tables always got finely crafted rainbows on their sprinkle pancakes

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#3

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Some Indian guys came in one time and asked for us to make thier food as spicy as possible. I told them that's going to be extremely spicy and wanted to make sure they knew what they were asking for. They went on a long rant about how Indian restaurants are the only places that actual know what spicy is and anything we bring out isn't going to be close to how spicy they like their food. So I had the owner come over to tell them that we'll try our best but there won't be any refund on this food if it's too spicy. So we made them chicken fried rice with Trinidad scorpion peppers. After 2 bites and about 10 glasses of soy milk later, they ordered something else.

MrCanno , Ryan Quintal Report

Misterscooter
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I've seen warning signs at restaurants in Santa Fe that there are no refunds if you order the spicy chili.

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Food expert Jessica stressed that there’s never a 0% risk when dining out if you have life-threatening allergies to certain foods. She stressed that the burden of responsibility can’t fall just on the restaurant if something happens, even if the customer is very transparent in communicating with the staff about their allergies. There are simply too many moving parts to control everything, and cross-contamination is a real possibility even if everyone’s a professional.

“Most restaurants will do their best to accommodate guests with specific dietary requests, but for certain life-threatening allergies, it’s not always possible due to the possibility of cross-contamination,” Jessica told Bored Panda.

There are vast differences in food allergies. While some might make you feel uncomfortable for a time, others are a very real danger to your life.

#4

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants This isn't really bad, but a lot of the times when people send food back and there's clearly nothing wrong with it, the chefs will just rearrange the food on the plate, wait a minute or two and then send it out to the table.

The funniest part is when the customer says that its better.

Sophie-xoxo , Lefteris kallergis Report

#5

I didn’t tamper with food but if you were an a$$hole I would spill water on you. Had a couple of people who came in 3-4 days a week, were nasty mean and never tipped. Every single server they had spilled a pitcher of water on them over a two week period every time they came in. They finally got the hint. Don’t be mean to people trying to do their (stressful )job. Don’t want to tip? At least be kind.

bojenny Report

Autumn Artemis
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

You’re just helping with personal hygiene 🤷🏼‍♀️

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#6

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Tampering with food is not that common. I've been in the business a long time and only worked with one girl who spat in someone's food. Another server saw her and she got reported and fired immediately.

The only other thing that sometimes happens is when people get cocky and ask for extremely spicy food the kitchen staff turns into evil geniuses. A guy once asked me for wings so spicy that they would give a woman a miscarriage. I relayed those lovely instructions to the kitchen and I don't know what they did but the sauce was burning my nose and making my eyes water as I carried it out. He was not able to finish his wings.

SailorSpoon11 , Pete Report

Jo Johannsen
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

When customers order like that, make a policy of getting witnesses, preferably the on duty manager, like the story above.

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“If you are lactose-intolerant and would like the restaurant to hold the cream sauce on your pasta, that’s likely no problem. If on the other hand, you have a deadly peanut allergy and would like the restaurant to hold the peanut sauce on your chicken satay, well, that’s another story,” the food expert told us.

“The kitchen can’t guarantee that trace amounts of the allergen will not make its way to your plate, and they (understandably) don’t want to be responsible for your anaphylaxis!” she said.

“If your allergies are so severe that they will cause you to have a spectacularly bad time should you come in contact with your triggers, it’s best if you stick to restaurants that have kitchens and menus which already exclude those items,” she explained to Bored Panda that customers with serious allergies need to do thorough research about the restaurant before eating there. If there’s not enough information on the menu, giving the restaurant a call or heading there in person to have an open and honest chat might help.

#7

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants It's not really bad but still makes me chuckle thinking back. My first job in highschool was at a fast food franchise in a very small town where you would know many of the people that came through.

Whenever a girl came through that this particular female coworker didn't like she would do whatever she could to increase the caloric count of the order. If the item had mayo she'd say put extra mayo. If the order had fries, put extra fries, larger soda/ice cream, extra cheese, etc in an attempt to make them just as little bit fatter out of spite - it was hilarious to witness this ritual.

Cindy, if you're out there I hope you're doing well.

flexibledoor64 , rob_rob2001 Report

Raphosaurus
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Imagine getting things for free, from somebody who doesn't like for not liking you. Sounds like a win-win for me!

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#8

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants We would call that the "B***h Tax".

You're a b***h? You receive a 3/4 portion

You're a b***h? Have fun with your practically virgin drink

We would never mess with their food, but if you were over-the-top rude then you get less food.

lilly_white_adore , Gareth Williams Report

chaotic legal
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

am I the only child who would order virgin margharitas just for the salt? and sometimes a lemonade margharita lol

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#9

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants I worked in a very well known fast food chain for a while. My favourite example of this actually involved nothing. The person who bought food had been rude to staff on multiple occasions. The person serving went to get their food, popped round the corner in a noticeable way, then returned having done nothing. He gave the food to him with a huge grin on his face and said "enjoy". He then watched the person throw it in the bin when he went outside.

PeteO5D , Farhad%20Ibrahimzade Report

Robin DJW
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

So the guy KNEW he was being a rude SOB, and assumed revenge was being taken. Great bluff. And he tossed it instead of asking for a free replacement order because he knew it would keep happening, whatever "it" was. Good job!

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Meanwhile, the very best thing that customers can do to prevent restaurant staff from sticking fingers in their food or (God forbid!) overcooking their eggs is to be nice. Be polite. Be gentle. Be witty. You’re dealing with human beings after all. Everyone makes mistakes, and some staff are trainees. And you can’t expect to be treated with a smile like a king if you act like an angry troll living under a bridge.

Bored Panda previously spoke to a server working at a fancy restaurant about her work. She explained to us what leaves a good impression on the staff.

“That huge musician Seal was in our restaurant once and he could not have been nicer. Tipped well, made friendly, genuine, conversation with the staff, just radiated kindness. It was really an encounter I’ll remember for the rest of my life,” she said.

#10

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants I had a buddy at mcdonalds, a real chaotic type, who every once and a while would say "oh hey, guess what time it is... PICKLE SURPRISE!" and put a whole handful of pickles on a random cheeseburger.

mattmoney31716 , jeffreyw Report

K- THULU
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Wish it would happen to me... I love pickles!

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#11

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants I’ve never f**ked with anyone’s food because thats gross

I did however throw someone’s credit card away after she mistakenly left it behind. Maybe she shouldn’t have stiffed me and been a b***h the whole evening

hopeg95 , CafeCredit.com Report

Ray Ceeya (RayCeeYa)
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

It's not the worst thing you could have done. You could have left it at the bus stop.

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#12

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Many many years ago when I was barista if someone was exceptionally rude I'd make their drink with decaf.

joemondo , Sung Wang Report

Not all customers are as nice, however. Some have physically threatened and even attacked staff members. “Not just over masks and other safety requirements, either. It’s as though the stress of the last year has amped societal entitlement up to a new degree. I spend more time now soothing tantruming adults than I do running food,” she told Bored Panda.

“Just last night a customer followed me out to the parking lot and tried to take down my license plate because I charged him for extra ketchup, (as per our business policy, written on the menu,” the server told us.

“So, the biggest problem with being a server right now is, in short, that many people treat us as sub-human trash. Say hello, look us in the eye when you order, leave a tip, and don’t call us names or threaten us. Is it so much to ask?”

#13

I used to work in fast food ... if you were a douche bag and you didn’t specify a meal or anything just ordering bits and pieces you bet I’m not going to offer cheaper packs with the same stuff! They got each and every individual item. Some guy once order some nuggets and chips and I gave him just that (approx $20) too bad if he was nice I would have offered a drink and saved him like $5 .

And vice versa some guy was having a party and ordering a whole heap of stuff but was such a nice dude I chucked it all into ‘meal deals’ and instead of it being $80-90 it was $50 (he gave me a good lil tip for that!)

welivein-a-society Report

chaotic legal
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

ah. Read the signs. Maybe I'll start drinking coke if it makes my food cheaper 🤣

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#14

I worked at a popular fast food chain in my younger years, it was my first time with closing shift and we were all doing our part to clean and prep the store.

I see this lady with a mop and bucket come out of the back, slop it on to the griddle and START MOPPING IT. I was appalled. I went and told the manager and she tells me well that’s the quickest way to clean it then scolded me for worrying about things that didn’t concern me.

I quit that job next day and then called the district office and told them what happened. That location closed down not long after. But the franchise still exists.

StellaLuna914 Report

David-Michael Wallace
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

A designated mop wouldn't bother me in the slightest. BBQ joints use mops to slather too. They're not mopping up the floor after tho.

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#15

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Worked in restaurants for over 10 years. It’s pretty rare that you see people mess with someone’a food but it does happen occasionally. The most memorable was once when a customer made a waitress cry complaining about their food and sent it back. The chef farted on the remake. It got a lot of laughs.

More common is if a customer is an a**hole, when they order dessert, you find the smallest slice of cheesecake you can.

TannedCroissant , stu_spivack Report

Aubrey
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This is kinda funny. I only say that cause like that's gross and I don't think it's right to tamper with food even if someone is a jerk, but then again, making a waitress cry is a whole new level of jerkiness

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At the core of being a good server, according to the professional, is making sure that everyone leaves the meal having had a nice and memorable time.

“I’m always on the lookout for anything extra I can do to make the night special for our guests. If I overhear a birthday mentioned, we bring out a piece of cake. If someone comes in wearing a Dolphins jersey, we’ll turn on that game if they’re playing. We take pride in our work,” she told us.

She also urged customers that see servers being mistreated at other tables to consider stepping in or saying something. Especially if the servers being mistreated are young.

#16

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants When I was a pizza delivery driver, when habitual non-tippers ordered I wouldn't cut their pizza all the way through.

Diet_Coke , Carissa Gan Report

Clan Leader
Community Member
7 months ago (edited) Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This is why tipping is a bad idea. In my country they pay you a living wage and anyone demanding tips gets told where to go. You get delivery drivers on 20 bucks an hour demanding tips. They don’t get them

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#17

Worked at a high end steak house. The dirty secret is many of their streaks were frozen and thawed out at the restaurant. Honestly, this didn't bother me. Anyway, that's not the story.

So it was the last hour or so of the night. The cooks were getting steaks out for the next day to be thawed. One of the steaks fell on the ground. Of course this can't be saved, but since it's frozen and not hurting anything it's just left to the can get to it. So for most of that last hour this filet mignon was being kicked around like a hockey puck. It was defrosting and starting to stick and honestly was gross, but shit had to get done and it would be cleaned up when then mopped the floor me

5 minutes before close this absolute a**hole of a woman comes in and demands she be seated and wants a filet. So of course she gets that filet. It's picked up, washed off, and put in the rapid defroster (microwave) and then thrown on the grill till "done".

Everyone just watched and tried to keep a straight face.

She left after drinking a bunch of wine and taking her own sweat time to finish, about 1.5 hours after close. She didn't leave a tip. Paid cash, and literally paid with exact change.

Anyway, yeah, don't piss off the cooks.

UtahCyan Report

Ray Ceeya (RayCeeYa)
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

My record was 2 hours and 20 minutes after close because the server overserved the hell out of his last table and let them stack pitchers. When they finally left, that server had clocked off and left me, the dishwasher, and the night manager to clean up that mess. He just ghosted. I have NEVER forgiven him for that.

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#18

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants The worst thing i did was to this one guy that I already didn't like and he was being kind of an a**hole, I overcooked his eggs.

LoneRhino1019 Report

“The server may look unbothered, but that’s because it’s their job. ‘The customer is always right,’ is one of the only pieces of training many of us get. It is literally our job to be sure tables leave happy. We cannot argue with you. So, just because they’re smiling on the outside doesn’t mean they’re not offended, or even feeling unsafe, on the inside,” she said.

“If you’re not comfortable saying something to the abusive customer directly, just find a manager and quietly inform them of what’s going on, they’ll take it from there. A lot of servers are students who are too nervous about losing the job or looking unprofessional to ask for help. And, as someone eating in the restaurant rather than working there, your words will carry far more weight with the harasser than ours would anyways.”

#19

Not a restaurant but sometimes if a customer at my grocery store is being an a**hole I’ll put their bananas or bread on the bottom of the cart so they get squished

FarmerExternal Report

chaotic legal
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I was taught to pack groceries myself - goes faster, you make sure you got everything, and it's just nice to help the cashier, they get enough trouble!

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#20

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants One table were extremely racist to my colleague so I was given their table and they were so nice to me. So I overcooked their free brownie so it was burnt in some spots, put too much chocolate topping on their brownie so it was sickly sweet and very hard to eat

If they had complained I wouldn’t pleaded ignorant about burning it and would’ve said I was being nice with the extra topping

EmmaPemmaPooBear , Frédéric BISSON Report

chaotic legal
Community Member
7 months ago (edited) Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Some people have the sign "we have the right to refuse service to anyone" and i feel that would be a legit reason to use it. Poor guy.

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#21

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants If you are a b***h to baristas at Starbucks, you will get decaf espresso shots in your latte/cap/frap what ever. If you ordered tea, they will not shake it.

This is the way.

[deleted] , Fahmi Fakhrudin Report

Rebekah
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I am ok with this. Be nice to those helping you.

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#22

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants I worked for Applebee’s for 7 years, and not until my last year did I witness this act. One of the cooks would drop down to one pair of tongs for the grill station for closing. He used the same tongs for raw chicken, beef, seafood, and cooked food. He would swish the tongs in his sanitizing solution, that looked like soup since he never changed it, claiming that it was “good” after that. I called him out on it and he told me that he never told me how to cook, so I should let him be. I told management too and it was swept under the rug like everything else. I quit shortly after, but that was the only time I witnessed something f**king disgusting like that.

bigeddiespaghetti , Joshua Hoehne Report

#23

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Worked at a movie theatre for a while. Our pizzas came frozen in a large bag of many pizzas, so the contents sometimes got shifted around during shipping.

One dude was acting like it was the end of the world because he got there late, hungry, AND had to wait in line. He ordered a pepperoni pizza, so my coworker went to the freezer, pulled out a pizza with ONE slice of pepperoni on it, and tossed that sucker into the oven.

The guy eventually got a refund, but that must have felt good to see the reaction from him.

ogonga , John Liu Report

#24

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Saw a coworker throw a hot dog onto a greasy floor, step on it, throw it back on the grill and then serve it.

The customer was treating one of our waitresses like total garbage (continually hitting on and demeaning her.)

He did clean the grill and utensils after.

I was 14/15 and didn't really see a problem at the time.

Impster5453 , Yuheng Chen Report

#25

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Guy was being an a**hole at the drive thru, so I gave him no onions instead of extra onions

comik300 , fdecomite Report

#26

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Was over 10 years ago, I worked at a golf course restaurant, one of my female co-workers had some crude shit said to her by one of the old golfers. Something along the lines of "with an a** like that you shouldn't be in the kitchen, you should be on the course serving us beers!" Then he ordered a ham sandwich on the turn to the back 9. She licked the f**k out of that ham before putting it on the sandwich, then wrapped it in saran wrap, punched it, and went out and handed it to him herself.

imapersonmaybe , Eaters Collective Report

SelkieBlackfysh
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Hate to say this but that old dude would probably have tipped her for the saliva. Yeugh.

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#27

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Friend used to work at a small local grocery store, and apparently the owner would open a bag of chips, eat a handful, use a coffee hot plate to reseal the bag, and put it back on the shelf.

ALLCAPSB***HES , EvelynGiggles Report

A Jones
Community Member
7 months ago Created by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

That's illegal. For one pathogens, two who knows what diseases they carry.

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#28

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants Pour the whole tray of drinks over a guest - twice. International trade fair with students as waiters. First time was an accident, second time she was so nervous she was practically shaking and spilled the drinks again on the same guy.

skaffen37 , Stevan Sheets Report

#29

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants I saw a waiter pour an orange juice, take a big swig with his lips on the rim, top it up then take it to the table.

RegulatoryCapturedMe , Nenad Stojkovic Report

#30

30 Funny, Petty, And Rude Things People Have Seen Done To Customers' Orders At Restaurants One time I ordered a liter of cola and the kid working the register secretly poked a hole in the cup.

thefritopendejo , Hector Alejandro Report

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