Last Updated on February 14, 2024 by Shari Mason
It seems impossible to encounter anyone who doesn’t relish the unique tang of sour pickles in their succulent burgers and chicken sandwiches from McDonald’s. The specific type of pickles used by McDonald’s truly elevates the taste, striking the perfect balance between sweet, salty, and sour.
But what kind of pickles does McDonald’s use? Our team did in-depth research to get you answers to this burning question.
What Pickle Does McDonald’s Use?
The local McDonald’s uses thinly sliced sour dill pickles.
If you love pickles and want just a couple more slices, you’re better off ordering their Angus Third Pounders, which are popular for their thicker slices.
You can also ask the crew for extra pickles. Their sweet pickle relish is only found in the Big Mac sauce.
However, the company has yet to disclose that information if you wanted to know exactly what brand pickles McDonald’s uses. McDonald’s doesn’t sell them a la carte, and they aren’t available online.
It’s unclear exactly where many fast food restaurants source their sour pickles, but plenty of people have likened them to Heinz and Albertsons Signature.
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What Are Kosher Dill Pickles?
It’s said that McDonald’s uses Kosher dill pickles for their burgers, which is slightly different from the regular cucumber pickles you can get at your local grocery store.
Kosher dill spears are made in the classic New York style, which uses salt brine flavored generously with dill and garlic.
On the other hand, regular pickled dill does not use garlic in the pickling process.
The main difference between these two types of pickles is their flavor.
With Kosher dill pickles, you’ll get all the tartness from regular dill and cucumber pickles but with the savory, spicy, and slightly pungent addition of garlic.
How Are McDonald’s Pickles Different From Other Fast Food Chains?
McDonald’s pickle slices have a naturally savory, tart, and sweet profile.
They also slice their pickles ever so thinly, so you’ll get plenty of that crunch without compromising the pickle flavor in your mouth.
Other popular fast-food chains use regular dill pickles in their sandwiches. However, we do find that the garlic flavor within the brine puts McDonald’s pickles leagues above everyone else.
Can You Buy McDonald’s Pickles?
Unfortunately, no, you cannot buy McDonald’s pickles anywhere.
McDonald’s pickles continue to be unavailable in both the store and drive thru. You also won’t be able to purchase them online.
If you want more than a few pickles, we suggest you get their Angus Third Pounders, which undoubtedly have more pickles in each bite.
Of course, you can always ask for extra pickles in your burger because their regular cheeseburger typically has only a couple of slices.
Read: How To Reheat A Big Mac?
Pickles Similar To McDonald’s
Heinz Hamburger Dill Pickles
Many say Heinz Dill Pickles are the closest thing you can get to McDonald’s pickles.
We have to say they’re absolutely right — these real pickles have a delicate taste and flavor, highly similar to the kind of pickles you get at the famous fast food chain.
You can also opt to get the Heinz Genuine Whole Sour Dill, but you have to cut them thinly to get the entire McDonald’s experience.
Grillo’s Classic Dill Pickles
Grillo’s Classic Dill Pickles are another great option if you’re looking for McDonald’s-ish pickles. These have a nice balance of sweetness, sourness, and saltiness, perfect if you want to eat them straight out of the jar.
The best part about Grillo’s is they look and feel like homemade pickles and have a nice satisfying crunch with each bite.
Milwaukee’s Baby Dill Pickles
Milwaukee’s Baby Dill Pickles have a nice sour dill taste that’ll keep you wanting more! You can get them from the Meijer Store.
Milwaukee’s is made with fresh cucumbers with a classic dill taste and a satisfying crunch.
Why do McDonald’s pickles taste good?
The McDonald’s chain adds pickles that taste good and provide the necessary freshness and crunch to balance a hefty hamburger bite perfectly. It’s also worth noting that their pickles are Kosher dill pickles, meaning garlic was added to the classic salt brine. This addition gives the pickle savoriness, saltiness, and pungency.
What Are McDonald’s Pickles Made Of?
McDonald’s lists the ingredients of their sliced dill pickles online, which consist of typical pickle ingredients like cucumber, water, distilled vinegar, salt, calcium chloride, alum, natural flavors, turmeric extract, spice extractives, and artificial preservatives like potassium sorbate. 
Unfortunately, we have yet to find out the exact kind of pickles McDonald’s uses for their burgers and sweet pickle relish for the Big Mac special sauce because the company hasn’t disclosed it yet.
You also can’t purchase them from their store or online, making it difficult to identify their source. You can, however, ask the crew for extra pickles.
What we do know is that McDonald’s uses Kosher dill pickles. These have added garlic to the salt brine, which gives it a savory, salty, and slightly pungent profile.
However, we know that McDonald’s continues to use artificial preservatives, like potassium sorbate, in their pickles.
However, we do find that some grocery options taste just as great as the kind of pickles from McDonald’s. Heinz Hamburger Dill Pickles, Grillo’s Classic Dill Pickles, and Milwaukee’s Baby Dill Pickles are just some of the few pickles that taste just like the ones McDonald’s uses.
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