McDonald’s has made a name for itself by providing convenience food to its customers at any time, day or night, and during every season of the year.
While its menu caters to every palate, it’s essential to consider which McDonald’s items are halal and which are not before ordering your meal at the drive-thru or inside the restaurant.
To help you make an informed decision, here’s what you need to know about halal food and which McDonald’s items are halal.
The True Definition of Halal!
Halal is an Arabic word that means lawful or permissible. Halal food can be defined as any food or drink that meets the Islamic dietary guidelines of Islam, which prohibits certain foods and ingredients as haram or forbidden. For example, pork and pork products are not considered halal because they contain traces of banned blood. Alcoholic beverages are also deemed forbidden in Islam and thus are not regarded as halal.
McDonald’s & Halal Foods
There are different types of halal food, but for today we will be focusing on McDonald’s. There has been a lot of controversy over whether or not it is halal to eat at McDonald’s, especially when you order chicken products.
Many people think it is haram to eat at McDonald’s because they use pork and beef fat in their fryers, making everything they make haram, including their fried chicken. But there is a difference between food prepared in America vs food imported from Muslim countries.
If you have ever ordered some McNuggets overseas, it was probably halal unless McDonald’s recently changed their recipe. However, if you live in America, then it might be best to avoid eating any food that comes out of their frying oil as, according to certain scholars, it may not be halal at all.
Requirements To Be A Halal Restaurant
Here are the requirements to be a halal restaurant.
1. All foods must be prepared according to Islamic law, i.e., no pork products, alcohol, or blood are allowed, and food must not be cooked over non-halal meats.
2. No pork products (pork, lard, etc.) can be used in any McDonald’s restaurants, nor can they use cleaning agents containing pork byproducts.
3. There cannot be a specific area to prepare halal food; Muslims are required to mix with people who aren’t Muslim when dining in these restaurants (McDonald’s has explicitly shaded areas for these customers).
4. Muslim employees cannot work in an area where meat is handled if they have direct contact with it during work hours; there must be a separation from cleanliness standards.
5. They should offer vegetarian alternatives and other halal meals since Islam forbids the consumption of pork and alcohol.
6. Restaurants should be willing to customize menu items (like sauces) based on customer requirements, including white sauce instead of bacon on sandwiches or substituting beef patties for chicken patties on burger meals like McChicken Sandwich.
7. The meals cannot cost more than regular meals offered in that restaurant.
8. Chicken McNuggets and Filet-O-Fish sandwiches come preloaded with Halal Certified stickers because most prepackaged meats are already halal-certified. Still, specific locations serve Big Macs that do not have a Certified Halal sticker, so double check before ordering.
Which Mcdonald is Halal?
Some Muslims are under the mistaken belief that all of McDonald’s food is halal, which isn’t true. In fact, only the food in the restaurant locations with halal-certified kitchens and staff are considered halal. In contrast, the other restaurants have at least one non-halal item on their menu, regardless of whether it’s labeled as such or not.
If you aren’t sure about your favorite restaurant’s policy on serving halal food, check out our chart to find out which Mcdonalds’ are halal.
The Golden Arches
Almost every country in which McDonald’s operates has a variation of its fast-food chain, with some serving pork and others not. This disparity can confuse observant Muslims, who follow halal dietary guidelines that forbid them from eating pork or anything else containing any trace of pork byproducts.
But there is no need to be confused: most outlets serve meat that has been prepared according to Islamic law. However, individual franchises may vary based on whether they operate directly under local franchise owners or are now used by a corporate headquarters.
About 70 percent of McDonald’s egg supply is sourced from cage-free hens at any given time. According to a report from Humane Farm Animal Care, eggs from cage-free hens have been rated as higher in quality. So that means an Egg McMuffin on occasion is halal!
According to Islamic dietary laws, Muslims cannot eat any animals that have not been slaughtered according to Muslim law. Most Muslims agree that all meat from a halal butcher or supermarket is halal, as long as there are no apparent signs of forbidden, such as alcohol. However, whether Big Macs are considered halal is a topic of great controversy and debate in some Muslim communities.
Though you can get McNuggets at most McDonald’s locations in Canada, there’s a chance you won’t find them if your nearest outlet is run by a franchisee rather than McDonald’s itself. If you want to make sure that your order contains halal-certified chicken, order from McDonald’s directly. You might also try asking if they can make sure to use halal meat: many franchises have done so and will accommodate your request.
Fish Filet Sandwiches
Some of their fish filet sandwiches are entirely halal, so double-check with your local store before purchasing. The Spicy Filet-O-Fish is what you’re looking for if you want a halal sandwich; be sure to inform your server that you wish for a halal sandwich, and they’ll bring it right out.
Shakes and Milkshakes
Americans can get a real kick out of McDonald’s Shakes and Milkshakes. Unfortunately, fast food chains are often packed with non-halal ingredients and high fructose corn syrup. Still, some good news: Most flavors of McDonald’s shakes and milkshakes at U.S locations do not contain animal ingredients or pork gelatin! The only halal flavors listed on McDonald’s website are vanilla and chocolate.
Which McDonald’s Have Halal Food?
McDonald’s and Halal food go hand in hand, or so it would seem, given the sheer number of halal McDonalds worldwide. But how does Mcdonald’s determine which stores get to carry halal food and which ones don’t?
And why do some Mcdonald’s carry halal and non-halal products, while others only have halal? The answer has to do with the ethics of the business and whether they want to serve both Muslim and non-Muslim customers simultaneously.
If you visit North America, you can find halal food in any restaurant listed as McDonald’s. If you are looking for something other than burgers and chicken nuggets, try your luck at one of these restaurants (City Name), Wendy’s, Subway, Dairy Queen, Taco Bell, and Chipotle. (Other City Name) White Castle, Checkers/Rally’s Hamburgers & Carl Jr.
Restaurants are just some other places that serve halal food if you happen to live near them. Those interested may wish to purchase ingredients from local grocery stores and supermarkets such as Whole Foods Market and Kroger; both chains are widely available.
Australia, New Zealand & Pacific Islands
There are restaurants in Australia, New Zealand, and island countries within Oceania that serve halal food. McDonald’s Australia and Pacific Islands locations offer halal menu items Sydney Airport Domestic Terminal (Sydney).
McCafe, Ground Floor McNuggets Kiosk; Melbourne Airport T3 Domestic Terminal (Melbourne) – McCafe; Melbourne T2 International Terminal (Melbourne) – McCafe; Auckland International Airport (Auckland) – McCafe. All above outlets were confirmed to be using halal-certified meat products.
Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Guyane Français (French Guiana), Brazil, Venezuela; plus areas of Peru and Colombia. This includes all countries in South America except Chile, Bolivia, Argentina, and Uruguay.
The most common halal meat can be found in Brazilian beef, lamb, or chicken. Be aware that you will only find halal meat where a higher proportion of Muslims lives.
When eating out: Muslim-friendly restaurants can be identified by symbols outside and written in Arabic on their menu. McDonald’s fast-food restaurants in Latin American countries serve halal foods to cater to Muslim clientele in these regions. There are also some vegetarian dishes on menus across South America.
Essential Steps to Find Out Which Mcdonald Are Halal
There are tons of resources about what halal is, but most people don’t know much about it—including restaurant staff. If you ask them if something is halal, they may make an incorrect statement based on their understanding of it. Find out which sources they relied on to get their information; if it came from non-Muslims who knew nothing about halal, try to find a different source.
Look Up Ingredients Online
Many products that have ingredients made with animal byproducts can be considered Haram (or illegal in Islam) because using these ingredients involves unethical practices such as harming animals or cutting corners when it comes to slaughtering livestock for consumption.
But some companies do create synthetic alternatives for many animal-based products so their foods can pass Muslim standards. Make sure to double-check before assuming any food product is halal—and avoid foods with gelatin, which often contains pork or beef fat.
Talk To Them In Person
This isn’t always possible, especially when restaurants are busy and understaffed during peak hours. You can speak directly with a business representative via telephone or email, contact them and clarify anything that might seem vague.
Use Common Sense
Sometimes knowing whether something is halal requires common sense rather than research. For example, McDonald’s typically uses pork fat to cook its fries, which should probably be avoided unless they explicitly state otherwise. When we don’t think critically about our actions and do what seems most accessible, we risk violating our religious beliefs without even realizing it.
Donate To Charity Instead
It would be best if you considered donating money to a reputable charity instead of purchasing questionable items that could potentially violate your religious beliefs. It won’t cost you too much—just an hour or two of your time every month or so—and you can feel confident that your hard-earned cash was put to good use.