Are Apple Pies at McDonald’s Vegan?

Many people wonder if the apple pies at McDonald’s are a vegan-friendly option. In this article, we will explore the ingredients used in McDonald’s apple pies to determine whether they meet the criteria for a vegan diet.

1. Ingredient Analysis

To determine if McDonald’s apple pies are vegan, we must first examine the ingredients. Below is a list of the main components of an apple pie at McDonald’s:

  • Apples
  • Sugar
  • Enriched Flour
  • Water
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Modified Food Starch
  • Salt
  • Malic Acid
  • Cinnamon
  • Xanthan Gum
  • Wheat
  • Soy

Based on these ingredients, the apple pie at McDonald’s may not be suitable for a vegan diet. While the use of apples, sugar, water, salt, and cinnamon pose no concerns, the presence of enriched flour, vegetable oil, modified food starch, malic acid, xanthan gum, wheat, and soy raises some questions.

2. Enriched Flour

Enriched flour usually contains additives such as Vitamin B and iron. Some brands of enriched flour may also include animal-derived ingredients like whey powder or mono- and diglycerides. Without more specific information about the source of enriched flour in McDonald’s apple pies, it is difficult to determine if it is vegan-friendly.

3. Vegetable Oil

The use of vegetable oil may suggest that McDonald’s apple pies are vegan. However, it is important to note that the term “vegetable” can refer to any plant-based oil and may include oils derived from animal sources. Without additional information, it is uncertain whether the vegetable oil in McDonald’s apple pies is derived solely from plants.

4. Modified Food Starch

Modified food starch can be derived from various sources, including corn, potato, and wheat. While most modified food starch is plant-based, it is difficult to determine the specific source without further information from McDonald’s. Therefore, individuals adhering to a strict vegan diet may want to exercise caution.

5. Cross-Contamination

An important consideration for vegans is cross-contamination. McDonald’s apple pies are prepared in a shared kitchen facility where non-vegan products, including dairy and meat products, are also handled. This poses a risk of cross-contamination, making it difficult to guarantee the complete absence of animal-derived ingredients.


While it is challenging to definitively determine if McDonald’s apple pies are vegan, based on the ingredients and potential cross-contamination, individuals strictly adhering to a vegan lifestyle may want to avoid consuming them. For those with less stringent dietary requirements, McDonald’s apple pies could still be enjoyed as an occasional treat. It is always recommended to consult with the restaurant or seek further information if unsure about specific ingredients or practices.