When it comes to food, it’s hard to beat a big, thick, flavorful, juicy burger.
For vegans in the US, it’s equally hard to find a place that serves the right kind of vegan burgers, the ones that satisfy your craving and leave you in pure comfort food bliss.
Is Carl’s Jr. any different? Does Carl’s Jr. have vegan options? Let’s find out!
Is There Anything Vegan at Carl’s Jr.?
Carl’s Jr. may not offer an extensive vegan menu, but a few items on Carl’s Jr.’s menu meet the vegan dietary guidelines. Here’s a list of all the vegan options at Carl’s Jr. for your convenience:
- Side Salad – with modifications
- Natural-Cut French Fries
- Crisscut Fries
- Hash Rounds
- BRC Burrito – without the cheese
- Bean and Cheese Burrito – without the cheese
- Beyond Burgers – with modifications
- Sauces, Dips, and Dressings
This is everything that vegans can eat at Carl’s Jr. with a few alterations. However, it’s important to note that the menu items may slightly vary across various Carl’s Jr. locations. Therefore, it’s best to always confirm before ordering, to be on the safe side.
Keep reading to learn what modifications these burgers require to meet vegan dietary guidelines, what ingredients each of these ‘vegan’ items contain, and get answers to all your questions about eating vegan at Carl’s Jr.
Carl’s Jr. Vegan Options – How to Order Vegan at Carl’s Jr.?
Here’s a quick rundown of all the items on Carl’s Jr.’s menu that can be customized for a vegan diet, with instructions on how you should go about ordering them. Take a look for a hassle-free experience at Carl’s Jr.
§ Side Salad
Carl’s Jr. Side Salad includes iceberg lettuce, red onion, tomatoes, croutons, and the restaurant’s special 4-cheese blend. It comes with a choice of house dressing or balsamic vinaigrette.
When order Carl’s Jr. Side Salad vegan style, ask to hold the cheese and croutons and get balsamic vinaigrette as your vegan salad dressing.
§ French Fries
What’s better than fries? Two different types of French fries!
Carl’s Jr. hears you all French fries lovers. The fast-food restaurant offers two varieties of French fries – Natural-Cut and Crisscut (or waffle) Fries.
At Carl’s Jr., they cook their fries in vegetable oil and not lard, as is common in the restaurant industry. However, they use the same fryers for fries and other non-vegan items. If this is something that you avoid, you would want to steer clear of Carl’s Jr. French fries.
§ Hash Rounds
Listed in the Breakfast Sides menu, these crisp on the outside, soft on the inside mini hash brown patties are delicious. And they are also vegan-friendly.
While Carl’s Jr. Hash Rounds do not contain any non-vegan ingredients, they are cooked in the same fryers used for non-vegan items, just like French fries.
§ BRC Burrito
Originally made with cilantro-lime rice, pinto beans, pico de gallo, hot sauce, and 4-cheese blend wrapped in a slightly crispy, grilled tortilla, Carl’s Jr. BRC Burrito can easily be made vegan.
All you have to do is to ask to hold the cheese while ordering, and you’ll have a delicious, juicy, and filling vegan burrito.
§ Bean and Cheese Burrito
Are you a fan of the classic bean burrito? Get Carl’s Jr. Bean, and Cheese Burrito customized to your vegan diet by skipping the cheese.
You’ll get a generous filling of pinto beans topped with hot sauce and wrapped in a grilled wheat tortilla.
§ Beyond Sausage Burrito
I can’t find Beyond Sausage Breakfast Burrito listed on Carl’s Jr. website.
However, it is given in the restaurant’s nutrition and allergen guide and also highlighted in one of PETA’s articles.
While Carl’s Jr. Beyond Sausage Burrito isn’t originally vegan, it can be made vegan by holding cheese and egg. You will get a soft wheat tortilla filled with vegan sausage, tomatoes, and hash rounds topped with house-made fresh salsa.
§ Beyond Burgers
Let’s talk about what we have all been waiting for – vegan burgers!
While Carl’s Jr. doesn’t have any vegan burger on its standard menu, the restaurant has Beyond Meat’s vegan burger patties. They allow you to swap meat with Beyond Meat patty in any burger on their menu. You will need to make a few other alterations as well to make a Carl’s Jr. burger completely vegan, such as skipping the cheese and replacing any non-vegan sauce and toppings with vegan ones.
Carl’s Jr. burgers that are easiest to make vegan are:
§ Beyond Famous Star with Cheese
Here’s how you can make it vegan:
§ Beyond Fiery Famous Star
To make this Carl’s Jr. Beyond Meat burger vegan, you will have to skip the sauce and cheese.
§ Beyond BBQ Cheeseburger
This BBQ-flavored burger can be made vegan by holding the cheese and onion rings.
If you like your food a little spicy, you can order the spicy version of this burger – Spicy Beyond BBQ Burger – with the same alterations.
Even though Carl’s Jr. offers Beyond Meat patties, the restaurant does not make vegan claims due to potential cross-contamination, a major issue for many vegans. They do not use separate equipment to cook vegan burger patties. If this is against your vegan commitment, you may want to avoid Carl’s Jr. burgers.
§ Vegan Sauces, Dips, and Dressings at Carl’s Jr.
Whether you’re ordering sides or getting a burger customized according to your dietary guidelines, you add more flavor to your vegan food with the following Carl’s Jr. vegan sauces, dips, and dressings:
- Mustard Sauce
- Sweet and Bold BBQ Dipping Sauce
- Spicy Buffalo Dipping Sauce
- Low-Fat Balsamic Vinaigrette
Choose any of these to amp up the flavor of your vegan food from Carls’ Jr.
§ Vegan Beverages at Carl’s Jr.
When eating vegan at Carl’s Jr., you can pair up for your food with any of the following drinks:
- Diet Coke
- Coke Zero
- Cherry Coke
- Dr. Pepper
- Diet Dr. Pepper
- Powerade Mountain Blast
- Barq’s Root Beer
Does Carl’s Jr. Offer Any Vegan Dessert?
Sadly, you have to skip dessert when eating vegan at Carl’s Jr. The restaurant does not offer any plant-based dessert.
Carl’s Jr. Menu Items That May Be Mistaken as Vegan
Following are some of the items on Carl’s Jr. menu that some might mistake as vegan, but they contain non-vegan ingredients:
- Fried Zucchini – Contains milk
- Jalapeno Poppers – Contain egg and milk
- French Toast Dips – Contain milk
- Monster Biscuits – Contain milk and egg
- Biscuit ‘N’ Gravy – Contains milk
Frequently Asked Questions
Let’s wrap up the article by answering some of the most common questions people ask about Carl’s Jr. vegan menu…
§ Does Carl’s Jr. have a vegan burger?
Carl’s Jr. does not have a vegan burger on its menu. However, you can get any of their burgers customized according to vegan dietary guidelines.
§ Is Carl’s Jr. Beyond burger vegan?
Carl’s Jr. Beyond burgers are not vegan as they contain non-vegan sauces and cheese. They can, however, be made vegan by skipping the cheese and replacing the sauces with any of the vegan sauces available at Carl’s Jr.
§ Are Carl’s Jr. onion rings vegan?
Carl’s Jr. onion rings are not vegan. The breading they are coated in before frying contains milk.
§ Are the waffle fries at Carl’s Jr. Vegan?
Carl’s Jr. waffle or crisscut fries are vegan. However, they are cooked in the same fryers used for non-vegan items. If this doesn’t bother you or clashes with your vegan principles, go ahead and order some for yourself.
§ Is Carl’s Jr. fried zucchini vegan?
Carl’s Jr. fried zucchini is not vegan. It’s breading contains milk.
§ Is Carl’s Jr. biscuit vegan?
Carl’s Jr. biscuits contain egg and milk. Hence, they are non-vegan.
§ Are the French toast sticks at Carl’s Jr. vegan?
Carl’s Jr. French toast sticks are not vegan; they contain milk.
§ Is Carl’s Jr. bun vegan?
Carl’s Jr. doesn’t provide the list of ingredients for their buns anywhere on their website. However, on the Beyond Meat FAQs page, they mention that Carl’s Jr. Beyond burgers can be made vegan by skipping the cheese and sauce. By this, it can be safely presumed that the burger buns they use are vegan-friendly.
§ How do I order a vegan burger at Carl’s Jr.?
When ordering a vegan burger at Carl’s Jr., you need to replace the original meat patty with Beyond Meat vegan patty and skip the cheese. You also need to make sure that the burger you’re ordering does not contain any non-vegan sauce and toppings. If it does, skip them or replace them with Carl’s Jr. vegan sauces and toppings.
The Sum Up – Is Carl’s Jr. Vegan-Friendly?
Even though Carl’s Jr. offers vegan burger patty and a few other vegan items on their menu, the fast food place cannot be classified as vegan-friendly. The primary reason is their lack of concern about cross-contamination, which is a major issue for many vegans.
At Carl’s Jr., all the items are prepared in the shared facility.
Moreover, as highlighted earlier, they also do not use separate equipment to cook French Fries, Hash Rounds, and Beyond Meat patties, all of which are otherwise vegan. If this doesn’t bother you, you can have a good vegan fast food meal at Carl’s Jr. However, if you strictly avoid cross-contamination, you may want to avoid eating at Carl’s Jr.
Can’t eat at Carl’s Jr.? You can try making your own vegan burger at home. Check out the following video for the recipe…