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Dunkin’ Donuts sued by customer over steak-and-egg sandwich

Dunkin’ Donuts says its steak-and-egg sandwich contains Angus beef.

QUEENS — Queens resident Chufen Chen is suing Dunkin’ Donuts over a sandwich, accusing the chain of labeling beef as steak.

In a federal lawsuit filed in New York, Chen accuses the popular fast food chain of a repeatedly “false, deceptive and misleading” advertising and marketing campaign. The suit claims the Angus steak-and-egg breakfast sandwiches contain beef, not steak.

According to the complaint, “Its ‘Angus steak’ is not ‘steak,’ as the term is defined under 9 CFR 381.162” in the Code of Federal Regulations, “but rather a beef patty, an inferior product of minced meat that contains ‘fillers and binders.’ ”

The complaint also notes the chain sells the sandwich for 50-60 cents more than the other sandwiches on the menu.

Michelle King, a spokeswoman for Dunkin’ Donuts, said, “While we are limited in what we can say at this time due to pending litigation, we can assure you that Dunkin’ Donuts’ Angus steak-and-egg sandwich is made with real Angus beef, marinade and seasonings.”

“I believe this is consumer fraud,” said Chen’s attorney, John Troy. “They try to promote the steak but actually it is not steak. It is a meat patty.”

The lawsuit names three TV advertisements in which actors say the breakfast sandwiches in question are made of steak.

Dunkin’ Donuts lists the ingredients for the steak patty as:

Angus Beef, Marinade {Water, Beef Flavor [Water, Natural Flavor (contains milk), Autolyzed Yeast Extract, Yeast Extract, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein (Hydrolyzed Corn Protein, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Hydrolyzed Wheat Gluten, High Oleic Sunflower Oil), Glycerine, Artificial Flavor, Disodium Guanylate and Disodium Inosinate, Monosodium Glutamate, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Soy Sauce (Water, Soybeans, Salt, Ethyl Alcohol, Wheat), Salt, Triglycerides, Thiamin Hydrochloride, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative)], Salt with BHA, TBHQ, Citric Acid, Sodium Tripolyphosphate, Black Pepper}

Chen’s lawsuit seeks monetary damages, as well a court order stopping Dunkin’ Donuts from “inaccurately describing, labeling, marketing, and promoting” its products as containing steak.

“I believe all the people are entitled to damages,” said Troy.