Have you ever been out with friends and have nothing to order on McDonald's drive-through just because you are following a vegan lifestyle.
Whether you have been living the lifestyle for years or are thinking about going meat-free soon, there is no denying that it can be hard to go to fast-food chains like Mcdonald's and find suitable vegan options when following this trend. However, with some creative ordering techniques (which we will share below), finding tasty plant-based meals at America’s favorite chain restaurant could not be easier!
What is Vegan at McDonald's USA?
The popularity of plant-based diets across the world has led to restaurants, including fast-food chains, adjusting their menus to meet changing needs of their customers. In fact, McDonald's stores in America aren't keeping pace with other nations that offer more vegan options. American McDonalds doesn’t sell any plant-based range targeting just vegans yet despite having signed a contract with Beyond Meat (plant-based meat alternative brand) for their MC Plant range.
While you can order bits and pieces from here and there on the McDonald's menu, a complete vegan meal is still just an American dream.
After years of pressure, McDonald's finally announced that they will be adding vegan options to their menu. This is a huge step in the right direction for animal rights and healthier eating.
MC Plant is the first-ever plant-based burger introduced by McDonald's in some of their Denmark and Sweden stores. Most likely it will come to American stores in late 2021 depending on the feedback from their customers. MC Plant is basically a plant-based patty in a sesame seed bun with tomato slices, lettuce, pickles, onions, mayonnaise-style sauce, ketchup, mustard, and American cheese (I am not sure if it is dairy-free or not).
What's Vegan on McDonald's Menu?
As we wait for the Mc Plant to launch in America, we should stick to the current offerings of McDonald's. We all know that McDonald's is famous for its burgers and fries, but when you're a vegan looking to eat there the choices are limited. Several options will leave you feeling satisfied without sacrificing your ethics or health. Let's find out how you can get creative with the limited Vegan options at McDonald’s.
Fruit & Maple Oatmeal
You can order a healthy fruit and maple oatmeal bowl for breakfast at MacDonald. Although you have to specify no milk or cream until now they don't offer any plant-based substitute so it's just water-based oats which is unfortunate.
Premium Roast Coffee
Treat yourself to a cup of McCafé® Premium Roast Coffee. It is made with 100% Arabica beans and filtered water. It is expertly roasted and freshly brewed every 30 minutes. I recommend enjoying the coffee with a pinch of sugar. Unfortunately, their creamers contain dairy so Avoid them.
I'm a huge coffee fan, so when I heard about wakeup with bold flavor americano coffee - I was instantly sold. It is vegan and has no dairy in it. It is made with signature McCafé espresso combined with hot water, for those who prefer a bolder cup of coffee this will be a treat.
Minute Maid orange juice is vegan-friendly and tastes like fresh oranges. It's great for making your morning meal delicious too!
Baked Apple Pie
To your surprise, Macdonald's has a vegan baked apple pie. It is so far the most appetizing vegan option available in American McDonald's stores. The flakey pastry layers have a crispy texture while gooey sweet filling will satisfy your craving for something light and fresh!
Vegan Bread at McDonald's
Flour tortillas and English muffins are vegan at Mcdonald's. You can fill them up with the choice of veggies and dips to create a DIY veggie sandwich.
McDonald Vegan Lunch and Dinner
During the pandemic McDonald’s announced to remove their less-popular items from their menu, salad was among one of them. According to Insider, the decision was said to be a temporary move to simplify and speed up operations.
McDonald's website menu and chains still do not offer any salads for their customers. If they bring their salad range back vegans can enjoy some of their salads to make a side or meal.
McDonald's does not offer a great range of salads for their vegan customers; they can only have a side salad which is of course less than appetizing. To add some variety, vegans should try McDonald's Southwest Chicken Salad without chicken and cheese by adding dairy-free dressings from Newman’s Own to make it more appetizing.
You can choose from a list of salad dressings that are vegan and dairy-free. These options are
- Newman’s Own Creamy French Dressing
- Newman’s Own Balsamic Vinaigrette and White Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Newman's Own Classic Oil and Vinegar.
- Citrus Splash Dressing
- Sesame Ginger Dressing
- Zesty Italian Dressing.
- Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette.
DIY Vegan Sandwich or Wrap
As US McDonald’s does not offer any sandwiches for vegans until now, it's up to us to make one on our own. Making your vegan sandwich is much easier than you think. You can do so by ordering some soft tortillas, an English muffin, or artisan roll without any meat and fill them up with southwest salad (no meat cheese) or side salad with ketchup mustard sauce to taste; voila!
A fulfilling lunchtime meal that isn't too difficult on the wallet.
Doesn’t that sound yummy?
You have a wide selection of drinks to choose from at McDonald’s. Unfortunately, their shakes and smoothies are not vegan-friendly as they contain dairy products. Vegans can pick any drink option available such as slushies, sodas, or juices which all don't include animal byproducts in them!
- Fanta Orange
- Diet Coke
- Dr. Pepper
- Coca Cola
- Hi-C Orange Lavaburst
- Iced Tea (Sweet and Unsweetened)
- Minute Maid Strawberry Watermelon Slushie
- Minute Maid Pink Lemonade Slushie
- Minute Maid Blue Raspberry Slushie
- Minute Maid Premium Orange Juice
- Apple Juice
- Black Filter Coffee
- Black Iced Coffee
Apple slices are basically from the happy meal menu but you can order them as a side. They're good for your health, so try adding them to salads, DIY sandwiches, and oatmeal bowls!
Baked Apple Pie
An exciting snack at McDonald's is Baked Apple Pie and unexpectedly it is vegan all over the world and is Delicious. You can enjoy these crispy flakey layers of pastry with gooey apple cinnamon filling. It is so far the most appetizing vegan option available in American McDonald's stores.
Dipping sauces that are vegan at McDonald’s are
- BBQ Sauce
- Spicy Buffalo Sauce
- Sweet and Sour Sauce
- Maple Syrup
What is Not Vegan at USA McDonalds
This list is quite long, you cannot enjoy any
- Biscuits with fillings
- Muffins with filling
- Burgers ( all burger patties are meat-based)
- Sausage burrito
- Hash browns
- Any bakery items
- And Fries
Vegan Meal Ideas
McDonald's is never on my list when eating out because of its limited vegan options. But there are some meal combos that I actually enjoy. These are
- Fruit & Maple Oatmeal Bowl made with water with some maple syrup and an Americano.
Tip: Have some coffee mate dairy-free liquid creamers in my bag. Just add them to your oatmeal bowl and it will add a nice creamy flavor and texture.
- Baked apple pie with a cup of black coffee without sugar.
- A tortilla wrap filled with southwest salad without cheese and dressing and some sweet and sour sauce and some mustard. Enjoy it with a glass of coke.
- McDonald's slushies are my all-time favorite and I enjoy them till the last sip.
- Order any burger or sandwich from the menu and ask to leave meat, cheese, and mayo. Instead, order some extra lettuce tomato, and pickles. Add some spicy BBQ sauce and enjoy with a side of apple slices and any fizzy drink.
- Some iced coffee with a side salad with sesame ginger dressing.
Vegan options at McDonald's are very limited, but there are some things you can order to fill up your stomach. There isn't anything on this menu that looks appetizing or fancy so if you're looking for something more than just filling up your stomach in an emergency, I don't recommend going to McDonald's for any dine-out experience.
What do you think? Let me know by commenting below!