McDonald’s scrumptious oatmeal has taken a tasteful twist. In addition to the hugely popular Fruit and Maple Oatmeal, they’re now offering Apple Cinnamon. Atlanta-area McDonald’s owner-operator Keith Lollis says his customers can’t get enough of the healthy addition to the menu. “It’s our newest flavor, we recently introduced it. It contains red and green apples, walnuts [and] cream for only $1.99 plus tax. We’ve hit the mark with the oatmeal. We offer a variety of healthy menu options. We have at least six items that are 300 calories or less; we offer smoothies, bottled water, and orange juice. We are not just offering burgers and fries like we did in 1955.”

Lollis owns three McDonald’s restaurants in the Atlanta area, including the City of Hapeville (across from the old Ford plant), one on Riverdale Road and another on Camp Creek Parkway; each offers free WiFi. “I’ve been an owner for five years — two of them in Atlanta and three of them in Dallas,” shares Lollis, a Morehouse College graduate.

Throughout his college years and even during his career as a prosecutor in San Diego, Calif., his cousin was always recruiting him to join the wonderful world of McDonald’s owner-operators. “He would say to me, ‘At some point in your career, you may want to make a detour. Come talk to me and I will let you see how to run the business.’ I gave it a try in 2004.”

When asked to share business tips for someone considering becoming a franchisee, he says, “Save your money. Be flexible in your plans. The timing can be either fairly fast or slow. Also, be engaged in the business. Do your due diligence from the accounting side of the business to the operational side. It’s all-encompassing and not one of those businesses where you can check in and operate remotely. You are intimately involved as both owner as well as operator.” –yvette caslin