One thing about fast food is certain: options aren’t scarce in the U.S. However, you might be curious as to what the absolute best fast food items are when a particular craving hits. Below we deliver the top 54 fast food items in the nation so you can make a sound (tasty?) decision.
McDonald’s fries are considered by popular opinion to be the best fast food fries around. Their signature soft, buttery center complimented by their crispy and salted exterior almost makes us think of the old potato chip saying: “You can’t eat just one.” You also can’t beat the price and calorie count for a small.
The Signature Big Mac sauce covering this burger is theorized to be one reason for its popularity. Combine this secret drizzle with two 100% pure beef patties sandwiched between a sesame seed bun with pickles, crisp lettuce, onions, and American cheese, and you’re looking at one of America’s favorite burgers. At 563 calories, it also doesn’t make a bad meal choice.
The Burger King Whopper is coined “one of America’s favorite burgers.” It delivers 1/4 lb of flame-grilled beef layered with tomatoes, fresh lettuce, creamy mayonnaise, ketchup, crunchy pickles, and sliced white onions on a soft sesame seed bun. It can be thought of as BK’s version of the Big Mac: an iconic classic that consistently satisfies.
It would seem that McDonald’s Happy Meal does indeed make most kids, well…happy. The Happy Meal comes with either a hamburger made with a 100% beef patty, or tender and juicy Chicken McNuggets complimented by a side and a Happy Meal toy.
KFC’s Original Recipe® chicken is seasoned with KFC’s (still) secret blend of 11 herbs and spices, then hand breaded to crispy perfection.
Pepperoni pizza is an all-time classic, and Pizza Hut is still serving up some of the best. This is your go-to when you want a slice of pizza that brings you right back to your childhood, or when you need a game-time favorite everyone will agree on.
Don’t let the simplicity of the Americano fool you into thinking anyone can make it well. Starbuck’s baristas have been trained in the art of the Americano and getting that layer of foamy cream on top just right.
Everyone raves over Chick-Fil-A’s fries. Perhaps it’s their waffle shape, perhaps it’s because they’re cooked in peanut oil… We’re not certain, but we do know they’re a fan favorite.
You can’t go wrong with Chick-Fil-A’s hand-breaded and uniquely-seasoned chicken breast on a toasted and buttered bun. However, you can go even better by pairing it with those waffle fries we just mentioned.
Popeyes specializes in authentic New Orleans spice, which is most apparent in their classic fried chicken. Order it as a combo with a side or as a family meal.
Maybe it’s the curls. Maybe it’s the seasoning. Whatever the reason, Arby’s Curly Fries are a flavorful fry delight across the nation.
There’s something about the simplicity of the traditional chocolate and vanilla soft serve Frosty that keeps fast food lovers coming back for dessert time and time again. And the best part? You can get a small for just $0.99.
The Double-Double is a “best” at In-N-Out, featuring two 100% pure American beef patties, layered between their signature Spread sauce, cheese, onions, and a freshly baked bun.
The great thing about Dairy Queen’s Blizzards is the plethora of flavor options at your disposal. From Oreo to snickerdoodle cooke dough, and even hot cocoa flavors, there’s no sweet left behind when you reach for a Blizzard.
Along with the Frosty and Blizzard, McDonald’s has its own nationwide favorite ice cream dessert: the classic McFlurry. The McFlurry’s flavors range from M&Ms to Oreo Cookie, so you won’t be lacking options in the swirl-in department.
The Five Guys Bacon Cheeseburger is one of the most-loved burgers. It features two hand-formed patties with two strips of crispy bacon, wedged between two slices of Kraft American Cheese and a soft, sesame seed bun.
In-N-Out’s Animal Style Burger features extra Thousand Island spread on its beef patties, as well as extra pickles and onions. Load it up how you like from there.
Chick-Fil-A wins again with its nationwide favorite: bite-sized nuggets, perfectly seasoned, hand-breaded, and pressure-cooked in 100% refined peanut oil.
If you’re looking for a bit of spice with your chicken, definitely swing by Chick-Fil-A and grab the Spicy Chicken Sandwich. The pepper-seasoned chicken breast served on a buttered and toasted bun is one of the best spice “kicks” in a fast food sandwich.
The McNuggets are McDonald’s iconic chicken dish, featuring all white meat, bite-sized chicken breast fried to golden perfection. Add a side of their fries to complete a meal that’s been a favorite for decades.
The Cheesy Gordita Crunch is a cheese-lover’s dream. It features a flatbread covered in a melted three-cheese blend wrapped a crunchy, seasoned beef taco.
Shake Shack is in on the most-loved burger game. Its signature burger is a 100% Angus beef patty, freshly ground, and served on a non-GMO Martin’s Potato Roll.
Jack in the Box has some of America’s favorite fast food tacos. Each feature a crunchy shell with American cheese, shredded lettuce, and taco sauce. Plus, you can’t get a better steal than two tacos for 99 cents.
Wendy’s steps up its spice game with its own Spicy Chicken Sandwich, complete with a chicken breast seasoned with a fiery blend of peppers and spices settled between crisp lettuce, tomato, and mayo.
Auntie Anne’s Original Pretzel is crafted out of fresh, soft dough and baked to golden brown until it’s ready for the hands of its next owner whose craving an iconic, salty snack.
Popeyes biscuits are a signature side item at Popeyes, where no Louisiana-inspired meal is complete without its hearty and flaky buttermilk layers.
Popeyes offers its classic fried Louisiana chicken in chicken tender form, seasoned in New Orleans spice. This is a great option if you’re in the mood to add a dipping sauce to your meal.
When you’re looking for a classic crunchy-shelled taco, you’ll always be in luck at the nearest Taco Bell. They are a perfect snack, but if you’re looking for a full meal, it’s best to load up on a few of them.
Along with your Animal Style Burger, you can order Animal Style Fries topped with extra Thousand Island Spread, melted cheese, and onions. It may sound like a heart attack, but it tastes like heaven.
Stuff your soft flour tortilla with Chipotle’s seasoned-to-perfection meat. They offer high-quality chicken, steak, barbacoa, carnitas, or sofritas, as well as guacamole, and other fresh veggies to suit your taste.
If you’re craving an aromatic apple pie, but want it on the go, McDonald’s has your classic dessert wish covered.
Add a little spice to your fries by ordering Five Guy’s cajun-spiced and skin-on fries. Hello, addiction.
The Shake Shack Double Burger features two of its fresh, 100% freshly-ground Angus beef patties layered between lettuce, tomato, pickle, or onion.
Craving chicken for breakfast? Try it hand-breaded and seasoned, then wedged between a buttermilk biscuit. It tastes as good as it sounds, but if you don’t believe us, check out what’s so special about the Chick-Fil-A breakfast menu.
What is a fast food breakfast without a side of the all-time favorite McDonald’s hashbrowns? Morning, meet your golden-fried side of potatoes.
Made with lean steak meat, Steak N’ Shake’s classic Steakburger is your go-to favorite when you’re craving steak…between a bun.
The Egg McMuffin is well-known in the fast food breakfast world. Consisting of a freshly-cracked egg on a toasted English Muffin topped with real butter, lean Canadian bacon or sausage, and American cheese, it’s a McDonald’s “best” for your morning drive-through.
Craving fast food that isn’t chicken or ground beef? Stop by Arby’s and grab their Roast Beef Sandwich containing thinly-sliced roast beef piled on a toasted sesame seed bun.
It seems you can’t go wrong at In-N-Out when it comes to burger options. Try their cheeseburger with melted cheese atop a fresh patty and classic Thousand Island spread sauce.
Take a quick drive through Italy with Subway’s BMT, filled with Genoa salami, pepperoni, and black forest ham.
White Castle Sliders might be tiny, but they don’t fall short on taste. Each features a two-inch 100 percent beef patty steam-grilled with onions and a pickle. And while many Americans shake their heads at the quality of White Castle’s food, their Impossible vegan burger was voted one of the best burgers in the country recently, so they’re on the come-up.
Perfect for summer, this Sonic fan-favorite is a customer magnet. Fresh-squeezed lime meets the perfect amount of cherry sweetness and pairs well with a salty side or chicken tenders.
The Starbucks Pumpkin’ Spice Latte is probably one of the most well-known lattes in the nation. Get in the fall spirit with its rich flavors of pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.
When it’s burrito time, you may as well go Supreme. This iconic burrito contains seasoned beef, refried beans, Taco Bell’s red sauce, lettuce, cheddar cheese, diced onions, tomatoes, and reduced-fat sour cream for a filling and hearty meal.
The original Glazed Doughnut is a morning classic that never gets old. Dip it in your coffee, even if it seems a bit, well, old-school.
Donuts and coffee go together like peas in a pod, so it makes sense that Dunkin’ would have a quality coffee. From lattes to black coffee, flavor shots, and swirls, there are so many options to choose from.
This combo features four of Raising Cane’s classic chicken fingers, crinkle-cut fries, one Cane’s sauce, Texas toast, coleslaw, and a drink for a fast meal that satisfies in every way.
Culver’s Butterburger got its name for a reason. This fast food burger contains never-frozen, seared beef served between a freshly-buttered bun. It’s the Midwest’s version of In-N-Out, and customers are totally obsessed.
Subway cookies are soft, gooey, dessert perfection loved by Subway fans from coast to coast. Choose from several flavors ranging from macadamia nut to classic chocolate chip.
Another pepperoni pizza favorite is crafted by Domino’s. Grab a slice (or two, or five) of their iconic pie made with real mozzarella cheese and seasoned tomato sauce.
Indeed, stir-fry is on the “best” fast food menu. Panda Express Kung Pao chicken features spicy marinated chicken, peanuts, red bell peppers, zucchini, and green onions.
The Subway Chicken Bacon Ranch Melt is bursting with some of the best flavors in existence. It’s filled with melted Monterey cheese, seasoned white meat chicken, crispy bacon, ranch dressing, and your choice of veggies.
One of Starbucks nationwide favorites is the Caramel Macchiato, stacked with steamed milk, espresso, and sweet caramel sauce. In the summer, the iced version of this latte is one of the most-ordered items at the coffee shop.
Checker’s famous seasoned fries are extra crunchy and seasoned with their special blend for a unique taste.
With so many fast-food favorites, chances are you’ll run into at least one option in whatever state you’re passing through. Speaking of states…check out The Best Fast Food In Each State to see what’s selling out in your neck of the woods.