We already broke down the 19 ingredients in McDonald's French fries, so we decided to break down the ingredients in the number one fast food chain's other potato option — the McDonald's hash brown. McDonald's is the top global fast food chain and has the most money in sales than any other fast food chain. In our opinion, it also has the best hash browns.

Just an FYI before we get into this, there are 150 calories and 9 grams of fat in one McDonald's hash brown. Check out the ingredients below.

1. Potatoes

pasture, vegetable, potato, tuber, ulluco
Mishika Kochar

This one was kinda obvious... but at least they're using real potatoes.

2. Oils

alcohol, juice, oil, liquor, beer
Betsy Chilcoat

I had to group the oils in one category because there are so many. To make their hash browns, McDonald's uses canola oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil, and "natural beef flavor"* oil — four different oils!

*The "natural beef flavor" is a wheat and milk derivative.

3. Citric Acid

lemon, citrus, juice, lemon peel
Caroline Liu

Citric acid is used as a preservative in many processed foods. While this occurs naturally in citrus fruits, it is chemically made for mass food production. Citric acid is made through fermentation of cane sugar or molasses in the presence of a fungus. 

4. Salt

salt, flour
Bobbi Lin

This is another obvious answer if you've ever had a McDonald's hash brown. In one hash brown there are 320 grams of sodium, which is roughly around 20 percent of the general daily recommended value by the FDA.

5. Corn Flour

cereal, corn, pasture, vegetable, popcorn, meat, hazelnut, maize
Kirby Barth

Corn flour is commonly used for breading. This could explain the extra crispy and crunchy texture of their hash browns.

6. Dehydrated Potato

salt, chips, potato, corn, french fries
Emily Palmer

Foods are dehydrated to increase the shelf life. By using dehydrated potatoes, this allows McDonald's to mass produce hash browns and keep them stored safely for consumers to eat. 

7. Dextrose

corn, cereal, pasture, vegetable, wheat, meat, popcorn
Kirby Barth

Dextrose is a naturally occurring form of glucose. It is also called corn sugar or grape sugar. Dextrose has about half the sweetness as regular table sugar and is commonly used in processed foods.

8. Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate (SAPP)

sandwich, lettuce, bread, meat, tomato, vegetable, cheese, beef
Shelby Cohron

SAPP can be used as an additive in many foods. It is used as a leavening agent in baked goods, for water retention agent for meats, and in this case, it is used as a sequestrant for potato processing. A sequestrant improves the quality and stability of foods. SAPP also helps to maintain the desired color. Sodium acid pyrophosphate is labeled by the FDA as GRAS, which means it's generally recognized as safe.

9. Black Pepper Extractives

Black pepper extract is made from peppercorns and is used to add flavor.

10. Prepared in Oil

herb, olive oil, tea, oil
Jessica Kelly

The oil I already mentioned they use to make the hash browns isn't enough. To fry the hash browns, they use canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil with TBHQ (a preservative for unsaturated vegetable oils), citric acid and polydimethylpolysiloxane (yes this is a real thing and it's added to cooking oils to keep oil from splashing during the cooking process). 

Ten ingredients (with the oils combined) doesn't seem too bad when you consider some processed foods have over 25 ingredients. But now you know what you're actually eating when you go to McDonald's for a hash brown... Psh, no one goes just for the hash browns. Enjoy your OJ and Egg McMuffin with it.