As the vegan diet becomes exceedingly popular, people are looking for more and more vegan options at their favorite restaurants. One of my vegan friends goes to Chipotle and gets a meal with guac, a tortilla, rice, and beans… not too shabby.
But did you ever think you could eat vegan at McDonald’s? McDonald’s is famous for their hamburgers, cheeseburgers, fries, and chicken nuggets. It doesn’t really seem like the place a veggie-lover would enjoy just because of their exceedingly meat-heavy menu. Yet, vegan foods can be found even in the unlikeliest of homes. So, vegans can rejoice because they, too, can eat at McDonald’s (for the most part) if they stick to this list.
Disclaimer: McDonald’s states on their website that no meal is officially sanctioned as vegan or vegetarian. Spoon University does not officially endorse any meal as certified vegan.
1. Fruit & Maple Oatmeal
If you ask for no cream, the fruit and maple oatmeal is the perfect choice for any vegan breakfast. Clocking in with under 300 calories and 5 grams of protein, this hearty breakfast is one of the better picks at McDonald’s, especially compared to its counterparts like McDonald’s breakfast sandwiches or their pancakes with a breakfast sausage.
2. The Basic Side Salad
This isn’t the most exciting meal at McDonald’s, but it is a vegan option. With only 15 calories, you’ll probably want a little more for your meal. Unfortunately, all other salads at McDonald’s are full of dairy-filled dressing and vegan-unfriendly protein options.
You could attempt to customize a salad like the “Premium Southwest Salad with Grilled Chicken” but if you remove the cheese, chicken, and dressing, you’re left with some lettuce, corn, and beans and you might be better off just ordering the side salad to begin with. You can always get balsamic vinaigrette on the side for a healthier and vegan dressing.
3. Fruit (Apple Slices and Cuties)
McDonald’s sells fruit – apparently. According to their online menu, McDonald’s is the proud server of both apple slices and cuties. Once again, probably not the most filling meal (honestly more like a snack), but if you’re dragged to McDonald’s by your non-vegan friends and you’re feeling a little peckish, this is the snack for you.
Sorry vegans – the McFlurries and Shamrock Shakes of your dreams are strictly off limits. However, McDonald’s does offer a variety of vegan drinks ranging from soda (which honestly is not the healthiest option, even if it is vegan) to coffee (yes) to orange and apple juice. I personally am lactose-intolerant and feel the pain when it comes to the unavailability of McDonald’s drinks (I want you, Oreo McFlurry).
Although this list is sparse, in all honesty, there were more vegan options at McDonald’s than I initially expected. I probably still wouldn’t frequent McDonald’s as a vegan but hey, if you’re stuck there for some emergency, you know what to order.