10 Embarrassing Things You Should Never Order at a Restaurant

There is a host of reasons the wait staff at any given restaurant is silently judging patrons. Sure, bad or entitled behavior has a lot to do with it, but so does the order you place. A good rule of thumb is to just stick to what is on the menu or the daily special. Yet, without fail, so many patrons deviate, butchering the menu. Follow along to learn 10 of the most embarrassing things you should never order at a restaurant.

1. Well-done steak (or anything for that matter)

grilled beef steak

Grilled beef steak | iStock.com/VankaD

There is little less devastating to a chef than taking a beautiful rib-eye or filet mignon and having to prepare it well-done. Not only does cooking a steak well-done ruin the flavor and suck out the moisture of the beef, but it also has negative health implications. According to a report, the charred exterior of a well-done steak is directly linked to compounds associated with fostering Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Next: Ketchup 

2. Asking for a side of ketchup with that well-done steak

Tomato Ketchup

Tomator ketchup | Grafner/iStock/Getty Images

If you want to add insult to injury, order a side a ketchup to dip every bite of that well-done steak. This will certainly solidify your embarrassing restaurant order, not to mention have the entire kitchen staff coming out to take a peek at you. To boot, a well-done steak with a side of ketchup is our commander in chief, President Trump’s go-to steakhouse order.

Next: Ranch dressing 

3. Ranch dressing

Ranch dressing in ceramic ramekin

Ranch dressing | vikif/Getty Images

Restaurant goers can find nearly anything to dip into ranch dressing. You name it, there are people in the United States that will proudly dip it in the infamous sauce. Be careful where you order it though. Using the dressing as a side to pizza has practically become an epidemic, and there is no greater way to tick off a reputable pizza parlor than requesting a side of it.

Next: Daiquiris 

4. Strawberry daiquiris

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri with shallow focus

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri | iStock.com/dias46

Mai Tais, strawberry daiquiris, pina coladas, Long Island iced teas — you get the drift. All of these drinks are a go-to for barely-of-age college students looking to catch a buzz. These boozy beverages are a total hassle for bartenders to create, considering the number of ingredients that go into making them. So, if you want to avoid getting an eye-roll from the barkeep, order something a little more straightforward.

Next: Pizza 

5. Asking for a fork to eat your pizza

Eating pizza with a fork and knife

Eating pizza with a fork and knife | iStock/Getty Images

Here in the U.S., pizza is made to be eaten with your hands — not a fork and knife. Sure, in Italy it is more common to eat the pie with utensils, but in America, you are meant to take it in a little more fashion. When the thought crosses your mind to ask your server for a fork or knife, take a minute, let the pizza cool off, then fold that puppy up and indulge — with your hands.

Next: More forks

6. Asking for a fork at an Asian restaurant

Thai food and silverware

Thai food and silverware | iStock

There is a certain je ne sais quoi that comes with being able to properly operate a set of chopsticks. On the other hand, just giving it the old college try will make any restaurant serving Asian fare pretty darn happy. Nevertheless, before ever attempting to use the chopsticks, restaurant patrons will immediately ask for a fork. At the very least, try using the chopsticks and if you can’t get the hang of them, ask for a fork as a last resort.

Next: Hot tea 

7. Hot tea

Hot green tea

Hot green tea | isa-7777/Getty Images

Such an innocent request should not be an embarrassment, yet somehow ordering a hot tea at a restaurant comes across as high-maintenance and entitled. To begin, the server has to wait for you to make your selection, then has to assemble the smorgasbord of hot water and sweeteners, all for a $2 addition to the check. For a server, that amount of work translates to pennies on the dollar when it comes to their tip.

Next: Vegan

8. Anything vegan at a non-vegan restaurant

vegan burger

A vegan burger | iStock.com/margouillatphotos

Vegans can come across as, well, needy — particularly when dining at a restaurant that does not cater to the vegan diet. Running through the menu, many plant-based eaters will try to figure out how to fashion a meatless dish out of random ingredients sprinkled throughout the menu. Then, they trouble the server with ordering this off-the-menu concoction. Instead, just order a salad.

Next: Substitutions

9. Making massive substitutions

Two women sitting at cafe holding menu card giving an order to male waiter.

Two women sitting at cafe holding menu card giving an order to male waiter. | jacoblund/iStock/Getty Images

Do not be the person that takes an entree and asks to make a gazillion substitutions to it. If you don’t want half of the ingredients that come with a particular dish, odds are you should just order something completely different. Furthermore, if you cannot seem to find a meal on the menu that suits your needs, it may be worth preparing something at home.

Next: Fine dining faux pas

10. Chicken fingers at a fine dining restaurant

Chicken fingers

Chicken fingers | iStock

People are picky eaters, and for some reason, they take that pickiness to fine dining restaurants. High-end restaurants pride themselves on creating beautiful dishes from unexpected ingredients. That means that ordering chicken fingers with a side of French fries is pretty darn embarrassing. Once again, if you are looking for the basics, go to a bar and grill, not a fine dining restaurant.

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