McDonald’s has more locations than any fast food chain around the world, and that includes around 1,500 of them in France. The fast food giant first entered the French market in the early 1970s and quickly caught on thanks to the standard fare like hamburgers, milkshakes, and of course, French fries.
However, there are some striking differences between the McDonald’s menus in France compared to the United States. France has been one of the key markets where McDonald’s often experiments with menu items, and while not many have transferred over to the US, they became staples of the French menu. Let’s take a look at five key differences between the menu for the two countries.
In the USA, McDonald’s is known for their greasy, meaty, cheesy fast food burgers. It’s been a McDonald’s staple since it was founded in 1955. Well, did you know that McDonald’s in France offers vegetarian options?
That will come as a huge shock to the American patrons who have all grown to love the relatively unchanged and standard fast food fare served at their local McDonald’s. McDonald’s in France offers 100% vegetarian options such as the Veggie Paprika, the McVeggie, the Spicy McVeggie, the Homestyle Chargrill Veggie, the Homestyle Honey Mustard Veggie, and the Caesar Salad Veggie. All with a grilled, or fried patty of meat substitute.
Another wonderful addition to the McDonald’s France menu is the option to go gluten-free. As you know, American McDonald’s menus don’t offer gluten-free options, besides the products that are naturally gluten-free.
With the significant increase of customers with dietary restrictions due to allergies, or lifestyle, it’s a real treat for a fast food joint to include gluten-free choices. There are gluten-free cheeseburgers, salads, dressing, sauces, french fries, carrots, and their delicious ice cream-based desserts. It’s a refreshing change of pace from the less than health-conscious options found in Mcdonald’s throughout the US.
There was once a time when McDonald’s had this customer-favorite item on menus throughout the US. Americans called them Mighty Wings and they were great. They made their debut in 1990, disappearing off the menu in 2004. McDonald’s took another stab at the chicken wing scene once more, briefly reintroducing them in America from 2013 to 2014.
The reason is simple. Customers couldn’t afford the pricey item and Mcdonald’s is known for having inexpensive food. So it just didn’t work out. These days, you can only get the crunchy snack, newly marketed as McWings, at international locations, such as France.
Believe it or not, McDonald’s sells salad. Their salads were sadly taken off the menus in the US as a result of the Covid pandemic, due to lack of funds. Using a variety of ingredients to make their salads, likely a less-than-popular dish at the fast food joint, clearly took a toll on the restaurant’s finances.
If you’ve been hurting since salads were taken off the menu, you can always make your way to France, where McDonald’s still offers scrumptious salads. They offer mostly Caesar salads and side salads, with a vegetarian chicken substitute option available.
It’s common knowledge that France produces some of the absolute best baked goods on earth. Pristine and delicious baked goods are a way of life in France. So, it makes sense that Mcdonald’s in France offers items like croissants and the beloved pain au chocolat in place of things like bagels, cookies, and cinnamon rolls that you’d find at the US franchises.
Their McFlurry flavors are unique as well, showcasing chocolate candy flavors like Daim and Toblerone. If that wasn’t enough, McDonald’s France offers our old friend, the fried apple pie that Americans miss dearly.