McDonald's is the quintessential fast food restaurant: it's cheap, easy, and slightly untrustworthy. Along with that, you've got all the other great things that make America, America. Yet, with burgers and fries galore, McDonald's vegan options are limited to one lonely choice.  

Is it the fries? No. How about the salads, that's just lettuce, right? Nah, they've all got chicken.

(Technically, the side salad with the low-fat balsamic dressing is vegan, too. But I don't consider that a menu item — it's just sad.) 

So unless you feel like ordering five side salads to satisfy your hunger, you've gotta turn to your sweet side. As it turns out, the handheld apple pie is devoid of animal products. Now, don't get too excited, it's still full of saturated fat, high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors, and refined carbohydrates. 

And when it comes to opinions on apple pie, it's a pretty distinct spectrum. Some people love the warm combination of cinnamon with the tender, sweet apple chunks wrapped in delicate pastry. Or, like me, it's just some bland dough covering the epitome of a soggy, viscous disaster. 

Needless to say, I don't frequent my local McDonald's. Frankly, I rarely get fast food at all after eliminating animal products from my diet.

The Problem

Now on one hand, the lack of vegan options at McDonald's forces me to cook healthier meals at home or search to find suitable alternatives throughout the fast-food market. On the other hand, it can be stressful for myself and those around me when we can't all go to the most convenient restaurant in America and all be satisfied.  Sometimes, I just want to go on a spontaneous adventure without worrying if I remembered to grab an emergency snack

This begs the question: do I want McDonald's vegan menu to expand? Truthfully, I don't think I would be able to trust a fast-food joint to cook a veggie burger on a clean flat top and avoid cross-contamination. I'm also weary of receiving another bland, predictable salad or mushy compilation of black beans topped with some soggy tomato and wilted lettuce. Yet, it would still be something to eat.

The Solution

What we really need is more fast, healthy (and meatless) options in general. Even those who want to eat meat should still be able to have access to nourishing food on the go rather than being forced to resort to ultra-processed combo meals.

Fast-food restaurants have made some significant strides in this area over the past few years, but we definitely still have a way to go until everyone has access to affordable, healthy food suitable for all diets.

TLDR; My body is glad there aren't many vegan fast-food options, but my mind just wants an easy alternative. Oh, and I don't like apple pie.