Where Does Mcdonald’s Get Their Meat? Is It Real?

The Golden Arches, the Happy Meals, the quarter pounder… they’re all the stuff of happy childhood memories and adult guilty pleasures. Because let’s face it, sometimes you just have a craving for a Big Mac and some fries, and nothing but the real deal would please you.

We all know how big McDonald’s is, and we’re sure you’ve been there dozens of times. But, what about McDonald’s do you not know? It’s probably not surprising that a company of this magnitude has a lot of bizarre stories that it attempts to keep covered, and hearing them can make you wonder, “Where does McDonald’s get its meat from?” and “Is it real?” If you’ve been wondering about this recently, keep reading to learn more.

Where Does McDonald’s Source It’s Beef From?

McDonald’s beef comes from a variety of farms and ranches in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Additionally, their beef is produced from the sirloin, chuck, and round trimmings that are minced and then shaped into burger patties.

The classic Filet-O-Fish is made primarily with Alaska Pollock caught in the wild. McDonald’s chicken is free of antibiotics used in human medicine, and they source their nuggets from Georgia, North Carolina, Arkansas, and Tennessee.

Does McDonald Use Real Beef?

What everyone wants to know is, “Does McDonald’s use real beef for their hamburgers?” McDonald’s claims that their meat is 100 percent beef. “Every single one of our burgers is handcrafted with 100 percent pure beef, cooked and prepared with nothing but salt and pepper.” their website states. “There are no fillers, additives, or preservatives.”

A ground-up blend of chuck, sirloin, and round makes up most of the meat. Initially, the cattle start off on grass but transition to a diet of grains, grasses, and minerals.

According to a recent modification (via CNN), if you buy a Quarter Pounder at McDonald’s, your burger patty is likely to be fresh and not previously frozen. However, in terms of the health risks associated with McDonald’s meat, keep in mind that it is fast food, after all.

McDonald’s Meat Suppliers

McDonald’s gets its meat from a variety of sources, including Lopez Foods, which provides a significant portion of the meat used in burgers. Moreover, McDonald’s receives meat, poultry, and fish from Keystone Foods. To be precise, it gets 15 million pounds of fish, 300 million pounds of poultry, and 150 million pounds of beef from Keystone Foods per year.

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Furthermore, Keystone Foods was the first to bring up the idea of freezing burgers in order to preserve their flavor. Even today, McDonald’s uses this system to retain their burger flavor during the distribution process. Besides that, Kenny Longaker, a supplier based in Dutch Harbor, Alaska, supplies McDonald’s with the majority of the fish used in the Filet-O-Fish.

Importance of Freezing their meat

For its pork, poultry, and beef, McDonald’s uses a flash-freezing technique. Moreover, the flavor of the meat is protected throughout the flash-freezing process, making it even more juicy and tasty when cooked.

McDonald’s also partly fries the chicken nuggets before flash freezing them, which helps to keep the flavor locked in. However, the timeframe between when the meat is flash frozen and when it is served at a McDonald’s restaurant might be up to three weeks.

Does McDonald’s Get Their Chicken from China?

McDonald’s, fortunately, does not get pork, chicken, or beef from China, instead, rely on USDA-approved and verified suppliers and farms. Besides this, McDonald’s has a stringent process in place to guarantee that the facilities that supply their meat are of excellent quality and fulfill all USDA standards.

Sourcing Chicken for the Highest quality

McDonald’s gets its chicken from a variety of sources, including chicken nugget suppliers in Georgia, Arkansas, North Carolina, and Tennessee. Furthermore, pink slime is never used to make McNuggets or any other product at McDonald’s, although viral clips from some years ago claim to show pink slime in McDonald’s hamburgers patties.

Furthermore, McDonald’s chicken does not include any human antibiotics that are commonly used in medicine. Secondly, the McNuggets are made entirely of McDonald’s chicken breast, rib meat, and tenderloins.

Are Chicken, Pork, and Fish Meat Real?

Are McDonald’s Chicken, Pork, and Fish meat real? These thoughts must have been through everyone’s mind at least once. Yes, all of the other meat items are 100 percent meat as well. Real meat is used to make the McRib, chicken nuggets, and filet-o-fish.

The McRib’s sandwich is made with pork shoulder, and the chicken nuggets are produced with breast, tenderloin, and rib meat and are marinated for a more flavorful taste.

So, Yes. McDonald’s famous Filet-O-Fish is made with actual fish. It comes from Alaska Pollock that has been captured in the wild. McDonald’s places a high value on sourcing its food in environmentally sustainable ways. As a result, Mcdonald’s receives its seafood from a sustainable fishery.

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McDonald’s chicken is not given any antibiotics that are needed in human medicine. This policy of not taking antibiotics began in 2015. Also, the chicken meat has cleared USDA inspection.

Does McDonald Use Real Pork in McRib?

The McRib is made entirely of real pork, primarily pork shoulder meat. The pork shoulder is also ground up and molded into the McRib patty for their popular limited-time sandwich. A rib press rack is used to give the McRib its rib shape, similar to how a burger press works to make a burger shape.

McRib Pork Sources

McDonald’s sources pork from Lopez Foods for iconic products like the McRib, which is only available during particular periods of the year and isn’t a year-round menu offering. Interestingly, McDonald’s prepares the McRib by grinding pork shoulder and shaping the ground pork into rib-shaped patties.

100% Real but Still Cheap, How? 

McDonald’s imports meat in bulk, as it does all of its other items, allowing the company to save a great deal of money. Fortunately, bulk buying and saving money allows McDonald’s to keep their costs low because the savings are simply passed on to the customer. When meat prices soar and suppliers are pushed to raise their prices, some of the cost is passed on to the consumer.

Seasonings Used in McDonald’s Beef Products

McDonald’s typically season their beef with a pinch of salt and pepper before it’s flash-frozen and delivered out to McDonald’s locations. Further, McDonald’s does not use any flavor enhancers or preservatives, believing that using only salt and pepper is ideal for maintaining freshness.

Preparing Fresh Beef

Fresh beef is trickier to handle than frozen beef since there is a higher risk of contamination. For this, employees had to educate themselves to deal so that they’re better equipped to handle the new regulations. Employees have to be cautious not to spill raw beef juice on other materials or food.

Moreover, they wear blue gloves to prevent such events from occurring. The employees are given ample training to handle accidents. McDonald’s upgraded its packaging technology improved refrigerated capacity and did a variety of additional things to ensure that the fresh beef was handled properly.

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The quarter pounder is a must-try because it’s always 100% fresh. Burgers are made with two types of beef. The 10-1 beef is flash-frozen, whereas the 4-1 meat is 100% fresh.

Does McDonald Use Real Eggs in their Egg Mc Muffins?

They use freshly cracked Grade A eggs from IFFCO, UAE, which they pour into our custom round egg molds and cook on a heated griddle until they’re perfectly round for your delectable McMuffins.

How Does McDonald Make Burgers?

McDonald’s has reliable suppliers that provide 100% Halal and pure chicken and beef patties frozen to them since freezing isn’t just a safe and effective way to keep food fresh, but it’s also a great way to save money. It also maintains excellent food quality standards, and meals are cooked fresh to order, so you can eat your food warm and fresh!

Is that Pink Slime in Burger Patty?

Pink slime (also known as LFTB, finely textured beef, or boneless lean beef trimmings or BLBT) is a beef by-product used as a food supplement to ground beef and beef-based processed meats as a filler or to lower the overall fat level of ground beef.

Routine Audited Meat Processes

McDonald’s conducts annual audits of beef processors and suppliers and can track every step of the meat production process. Furthermore, this covers the procedures from when the meat is still on a living cattle to the flash-frozen patties that are delivered to their restaurants.


McDonald’s sources its beef from a wide range of farms and ranches in the United States, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. Hence it comes from reliable resources and is handled to the adequate controls to ensure that it is safe for human consumption.

McDonald’s meat does not contain pink slime, and the company does not use chicken treated with human antibiotics, contrary to popular belief. Finally, the beef used by McDonald’s is 100 percent actual meat with no additives, fillers, or preservatives, which keeps the meat fresh and gives it a true meat flavor.

So now you can order and enjoy your Big Mac, chicken nuggets, or McRib to the fullest since the meat is 100% meat, and McDonald’s is transparent about how and where it is sourced.