The episode begins at the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob is blows a trumpet, heralding an important announcement from Mr. Krabs: it is the first annual bun seed counting contest. Anyone who correctly guesses how many seeds are in the jar wins a free Krabby Patty. Several people make guesses, each more ridiculous than the last. The next contestant is Plankton, but before he can guess, Mr. Krabs grabs him by the antennae and takes him outside. Plankton claims it is unfair that he does not get to guess; however, Mr. Krabs says that he can do whatever he pleases and that he knew all Plankton would do is analyze the Krabby Patty to steal his secret formula. Mr. Krabs then chews Plankton up, inflates him, and blows him away, where he splats onto the door of the Chum Bucket. Plankton calls the Bogus Business Bureau on him, but Mr. Krabs is unconcerned.
At the Krusty Krab, agents burst through the roof along with Agent Twirp, who tells Mr. Krabs he must accept guesses from all customers no matter how "diminutive" or "annoying" they are. Plankton pops out of Twirp's breast pocket, proudly proclaiming he is both. Mr. Krabs is adamant about refusing to let him guess, but when Twirp threatens to close down the Krusty Krab, he reluctantly agrees. Plankton uses technology to scan the jar and guesses: 500,301. Mr. Krabs laughs at him, saying it is actually 500,300 "and none." Agent Twirp interrupts and states that the contest isn't official unless all the seeds be counted, and Mr. Krabs refuses until Twirp once again threatens to close down the Krusty Krab if he does not comply. Mr. Krabs painstakingly counts every single seed from the jar: 500,300. However, SpongeBob notices an uncounted seed in the jar's lid, and Plankton wins.
Desperate to stall, Mr. Krabs makes excuses, but SpongeBob corrects him. Mr. Krabs says the contest included a free show, which Twirp allows. He constructs a puppet theater and performs a puppet show, but Plankton sees through the delay and continues to demand his Krabby Patty. Mr. Krabs realizes there is nothing else he can do, and sadly tells SpongeBob to prepare what could be his last Krabby Patty. Mr. Krabs has Squidward distract Twirp, giving him time to flush all the buns down the toilet, but a delivery man with buns thwarts his last-ditch efforts. When the Krabby Patty is ready, Plankton wants it "to go," but Mr. Krabs says it must be "dine in." Plankton stuffs the entire patty into his mouth, but Mr. Krabs tells him to swallow it. Once he does, he asks if he can go now, and is thrown out by Mr. Krabs into the Chum Bucket. In the Chum Bucket, Plankton climbs onto an operating table and tells Karen to remove the patty from his stomach right away, even declining anesthetic.
Later, Mr. Krabs and SpongeBob sadly watch the long line at the Chum Bucket. Suddenly, people rush out, sick from patties they say taste like stomach acid, aspirin, and carrots. The rest of the customers flee, and Plankton asks Karen what's going on. She tells him she followed his orders, revealing she focused on his stomach contents, rather than the Krabby Patty's ingredients. Relieved, Mr. Krabs tells SpongeBob to recover the buns he flushed down the toilet and to put the seeds from the jar back onto them. The episode ends with SpongeBob saying "That's my Krabs!" and laughing.
This is the first time Plankton was able to eat a Krabby Patty.
Mr. Krabs adding more rules to the contest.
SpongeBob unintentionally helping Plankton to get closer of getting the Krabby Patty.
Since Mr. Krabs counted 500,300 seeds, it's possible they stayed in the Krusty Krab for approximately 5 days since 500,300 seconds is approximately 5 days. Or they could've stayed longer than 5 days if Mr. Krabs loses count.
This episode is called "Plankton Eats" in Digiturk (Turkey).
This time, failure to obtain the Krabby Patty recipe was Karen's fault. She should have figured out Plankton wanted her to analyze the Krabby Patty and only the Krabby Patty, rather than everything else in his stomach. Otherwise, Plankton would have won for the very first time and stopped stealing the Krabby Patty formula (this would have changed SpongeBob SquarePants timeline history).
When Squidward distracts Agent Twirp, he mentions health-code violations, though it's never found out what they are or if they even exist.
These health-code violations could be grease slicks, and other greasy methods like in "Greasy Buffoons."
According to the buttons Plankton presses, the Bogus Business Bureau's phone number is 8918.
The scene where Mr. Krabs stuffs the buns into a toilet is similar to when Jim and SpongeBob are flushing Krabby Patties down a toilet in "The Original Fry Cook."
This is the second time Mr. Krabs says "Flankton" as oppose to "Plankton." The first was in "Free Samples."
When the Bogus Business Bureau enters the Krusty Krab, the title card music from "Hall Monitor" can be heard.
Moreover, this episode, and "Hall Monitor" are the only episodes that play this music.
However, it was used on the original pilot 1997 version of "Help Wanted" during the title sequence.
This episode premiered seven years after the book, "SpongeBob SquarePants: The Movie" was released, five years after "Can't Swim" premiered, and one year after SpongeBob SquigglePants was released on Wii.
The bun seed counting contest is based on real-life jellybean counting contests. Unlike Mr. Krabs' contest rules, the winner is usually determined by whomever guesses the closest to the actual number, rather than getting the exact number that is in the jar.
The Bogus Business Bureau is a reference to the Better Business Bureau. The purpose of both organizations is to make sure businesses are not being unfair to customers.
If one looks closely at the first fish in line at the Chum Bucket, when he turns around when the customer runs out, his eye stays in one place and moves to the other side of his face. When he turns around, the eye makes it to its original state.
Plankton was on the left side of the chair, but when Squidward walked up, he was suddenly on the right side.
Just before SpongeBob pulls out his spatula, Mr. Krabs' pupils disappear.
SpongeBob's hat disappears after Flankton eats the Patty Laddie, but is back on when he is squirted with ketchup.
In the scene where Mr. Krabs is walking towards the Bogus Business Bureau and says "Drat the luck," the Krusty Krab table behind him has a pixelated white outline. This makes the table look like as if it was poorly photoshopped into that scene.
The tape over Plankton's stomach wound from cutting the Krabby Patty out disappears in Plankton's final scene at the end of the episode.
The lid and SpongeBob's arms disappear when he splits in half, even though they are sticking a good ways forward.