An Outback Steakhouse customer was unable to resist the sizzling sensation of a skillet their steak came in.
The customer, Haley (@aleyyy_hh), revealed on TikTok they snuck the kitchen item into a to-go box and claimed they were going to bring it home to make their own food in it. Their video features steak and macaroni and cheese. “I just finessed this from Outback, I wanna cook eggs with it,” the text overlay on the video, which was viewed nearly 5 million times, reads.
Viewers found the move hilarious. Folks who used to work in the food service industry, specifically as dishwashers, stated they didn’t mind as it just gave them one less thing to clean during a shift at the restaurant.
“If you’re not putting whatever fits into your togo box then you’re not getting your money’s worth,” one said.
“Honestly as a former server at outback it gives me one less dish to bus so go for it,” another wrote.
“As a former outback employee I’ve seen many customers take dishes cups ramekins and the little skillets; we always know and never care,” a third wrote.
One commenter replied that the restaurant tracks its skillets, however, and that Haley would be caught if she did indeed stole it. “The bottom of the pan has a microtracking chip I used to work at outback buddy,” they alleged.
This was met with a wave of incredulous responses from other users on the platform. Haley responded to the comment with a follow-up video.
@aleyyy_hh Replying to @jopapop2 #greenscreen ♬ original sound – Haley💙💍
She shows the bottom of the pan, displaying numbers etched into the skillet’s underside, saying, “Are you talking about this? DC212 USA? Only thing on the back. 99% sure it’s either a sizing number or a manufacturing number definitely not a microtracking chip?”
The video then cuts to a screenshot of the product online, which Haley appears to have done in order to further drive home her point that the skillet is not micro-chipped to prevent it from being stolen.
“Looked it up, just because I’m curious now, and, looks like a manufacturing number don’t know if that’s the same one, looks about the same, so,” she says, trailing off.
She adds that she doesn’t believe the skillet itself it made out of actual iron” Don’t think it’s real cast iron. I give that, but, I wanted it,” she says.
Users couldn’t believe that someone would try and scare the TikToker into thinking that Outback Steakhouse was going to come after her for stealing the skillet.
“They’re acting like Outback is going to come back for it and break down your door,” one said.
Much has been written about restaurant theft. A Press Herald piece featured interviews from restaurateurs who’ve plead with customers to not steal cutlery, salt and pepper shakers, table fixtures, and other items from their dining establishments. One business in the piece even remarked that a customer stole a painting off of a wall. Per the report, “‘Everything that isn’t nailed down is fair game,’ observed Clark Frasier, co-owner of M.C. Perkins Cove in Ogunquit and former co-owner of Arrows, where waiters were trained to get the mother-of-pearl caviar spoons off the table quickly every night, lest they disappear into someone’s pocket or purse.”
The National Restaurant Association also published reports on restaurant theft, which, while not accounting for just cutlery or dining items, states that “75 percent of all inventory shrinkage happens as a result of theft – mostly by…employees.”
The Daily Dot has reached out to Haley via TikTok comment and Outback Steakhouse for further information.