Whether you're broke or hungover, you can always count on McDonald's and its low-priced food to be there for you. In America, we think of McDonald's with its golden arches, chicken nuggets, and Big Macs, but in other countries, the fast-food chain looks a little different. You can find McDonald's at more than 36,000 locations in over 100 countries around the world, but each country's menu has some variations on popular items, along with new foods that are more culturally relevant. This is what you can expect at eight different McDonald's around the world.


McDonald's in Thailand serves some pretty interesting foods and is considered one of the more unique international McDonald's locations. Among popular items is a Samurai Pork burger. This sounds a little strange since Samurais are Japanese, not Thai, but the combination of pork, teriyaki sauce, mayo, and lettuce sounds delicious.

In my opinion, though, the best part of this location is the expansive dessert menu, which includes pineapple pie, traditional Thai rice pudding, and Millionaire's Cheesecake, which is actually very inexpensive (under $3). They also had a special menu for the promotion of the "Smurfs 2" movie, so I think Thailand wins best international McDonald's hands down.


McDonald's in Japan has a very unique menu. They serve Filet-O-Fish, available in the American McDonald's as well, but instead, they offer this staple as a breakfast item. They also serve items such as a squid ink burger (with a black bun) and Daigaku Imo French fries, which are the beloved McDonald's fries drizzled with a sweet honey and sesame sauce and topped off with sesame seeds. They also serve chocolate covered fries, which sounds like the dream of every fast-food fanatic out there.


Norwegian McDonald's restaurants include items such as Chilli Cheese tops (which are like cheese poppers), sweet potato fries, onion rings, hot wings, pasta salads, and quite a few fish items. They also serve an open-faced breakfast sandwich with Brunost, which is a traditional Norwegian cheese that has a brown caramel color due to the slow caramelization of the sugar in two kinds of milk.

The coolest part of their menu, however, is the Veggie McSpice, a vegetarian burger that's vegan if you hold the cheese. It includes the usual toppings, as well as a vegan McFeast sauce. Vegan and vegetarian burgers have been introduced in McDonald's in other countries before, but this new addition seems like a way to tap into the market.


If you're busy sightseeing in Brazil and need to start your day off right with some breakfast, try one or two (or both) Brazilian staples—Pão Na Chapa and Pão De Queijo. Both of these types of bread are offered at McDonalds. Pão Na Chapa is bread served with butter and Pão De Queijo is bread served with cheese.

Another main highlight of the Brazilian McDonald's menu is the Cheddar McMelt—a beef burger on a dark sesame bun, with grilled onions, melted cheddar cheese, and shoyu sauce. To finish off your meal, grab an Ovomaltine McFlurry, a blended ice cream dessert made with chocolate Ovomaltine powder, chocolate sauce, and chocolate chips.


Not surprisingly, McDonald's in India has a very large vegetarian menu to cater to customers that don't eat beef or any meat at all, and most items have flavorful Indian seasonings and spicy sauces.

Their breakfast menu includes the Veg Pizza McPuff, a vegetarian pizza pocket. They also have the Maharaja Mac, a chicken version of the Big Mac, as well as a vegetarian version with a patty made of corn and cheese.

Indian McDonald's also serves many dishes made of paneer, which is similar to a firm cottage cheese with tofu-like texture, such as the McSpicy Paneer burger or Spicy Paneer Wrap. They also offer two International variations of the McAloo Tikki (a burger with a potato-based patty) that draw on flavors from Mexican and Lebanese cuisine. 


The meat used in Moroccan McDonalds is halal, meaning that it is prepared in accordance with Islamic law and the Qu'ran. They serve staples such as the Big Mac and Happy Meals. They also have unique items such as the McArabia, a chicken sandwich with Moroccan seasonings in pita bread topped with lettuce, tomato, and garlic sauce, also found in other Arab countries. You can also purchase the Gambas burger, which has a patty made from shrimp instead of meat. 


McDonald's in France is much more elegant and refined than you'd typically expect from a fast food chain. They offer a Blue Cheese Burger, an Alpine Burger with three kinds of cheese, the McBaguette, and fancier burgers which they serve with a fork and knife.

French McDonald's locations also place more importance on the McCafé part of the restaurant, serving a variety of baked goods in glass displays and carefully crafted drinks such as creamy cappuccinos served in glass cups instead of plastic. In fact, McDonald's also has stand-alone McCafé locations in France.

They also have machines similar to an ATM to order your food, which speeds up the service when the lines get long. With services like these and business model that makes McDonald's more sophisticated and French, its no wonder that it's a big hit in France.


Mexican McDonald's packs a lot of flavor into their menu. These locations offer a Pico Guacamole Burger as well as Jalapeño Poppers. If you're going for breakfast, you have to try a McMollettes, the open-faced breakfast sandwich with beans and cheese. They also have a Queso pie, a flaky crust filled with creamy cheese.

If you need more flavor in your food, pick up some of their delicious sauces, including salsa verde and chimichurri. Finish off your visit with the Sundae Cajeta (ice cream with caramel, chocolate, or strawberry syrup). 

Many McDonald's locations around the world keep classic, staple items, such as the Big Mac, on their menus. But they also add their own flavors or serve totally different, more culturally tailored items, such as the McMolletes in Mexico or the McSpicy Paneer in India. Many McDonald's worldwide also step up the quality and sophistication of the restaurants (we're talking about you, France,) while others take on daring foods and combinations. Whatever the differences, we can all still recognize the chain by its golden arches, red packaging, signature slogans, and, of course, low prices.