10 European Fast Food Chains You'll Have to Travel to Enjoy Slideshow
July 18, 2013
Which fast-food chains in Europe haven’t made the jump across the pond?
If you don’t want to step too far outside of typical American fast-food chain fare, try Quick, the French version of McDonald’s. The menu at Quick is very similar to McDonald’s or Burger King. The Giant is basically the equivalent of a Big Mac or Whopper. Two burgers are sandwiched between the buns, separated by a slice of cheese and topped with lettuce, onions, and sauce. They also offer Magic Boxes, which are the French equivalent to Happy Meals.
Wimpy, United Kingdom
Don’t be deceived by the name — Wimpy's food is anything but. The name comes from J. Wellington Wimpy, a character from Popeye. There are locations all over the U.K. and Ireland as well as Japan, India, and Scandinavia. The food, such as the Bender in a Bun — a burger-shaped hot dog on a sandwich bun — is served on a real plate. Most of the restaurants have more human interaction than a typical fast-food chain, too, since the staff comes to check on you periodically.
Wikimedia Commons/Tanya F.
The Teremok chain was founded in 1998 and has grown to be one of the biggest fast-food franchises in Russia, with more than 200 restaurants. You’ll find typical Russian fast food here, such as borscht, dumplings, and minced meats. Blinis — thin pancake-like crêpes — are served with either sweet or savory filings and are a popular menu item. Unlike at many fast-food chains, here you can see your meal being prepared as you wait.
Though most Americans think of burgers when they think of fast food, Nordsee goes a different in a direction with a menu full of fish. From pollock to salmon to codfish to plaice, they have it all. You can choose how you would like your fish done, either baked, grilled, steamed, or fried. Nordsee attempts to use fish from well-managed waters for healthy, sustainable food. With more than 400 locations across Europe, it is the largest seafood chain on the continent.
Max Burgers, Sweden
If you need a good American burger, look no further. Max Burgers is not only Sweden’s favorite hamburger joint, it is also the oldest hamburger chain in Europe. And in Sweden, it’s even more popular than McDonald’s and Burger King. There are rotating specialty burgers, such as the Guacamole Burger, every month for something a little different from your average burger.
Wikimedia Commons/Barry Kent
Like the name implies, you can order from far away and this pizza delivery service has one goal: to deliver your food as quickly as possible. Aside from pizza, you can also choose from a selection of pastas, calzones, salads, kebabs, hamburgers, and even bacon-wrapped hot dogs. Telepizza also has gluten-free options of some of their pizzas, such as the Four Cheese and Ham and Bacon pizzas. The chain started in Spain, but has since expanded across Europe, South America, and the United Arab Emirates.
This Irish gem first started in Galway in 1978. Supermac’s claim to fame is that it pioneered two Irish delicacies — the chain claims to have come up with curry chips — french fries drenched in curry sauce — and the snack box, which can vary depending on the order, before anyone else. The menu also includes burgers, chicken, cod, fries, and Irish dairy ice cream.
Nando's, United Kingdom
Nando’s is home to the Portuguese flame-grilled Peri-Peri chicken. With locations all over the U.K., customers have a good chance of finding a location near them. In a style similar to Buffalo Wild Wings, guests choose how spicy they want their meat — chicken or beef — based on a scale from Tangy Tomato to Extra-Hot. Each customer can choose between having a wrap, burger, or pita.
While Hesburger might seem a lot like McDonald’s or Burger King at first glance, there are a few menu items that set it apart. One such item is the Ruis Burger — a beef patty topped with lettuce tomatoes, pickles, two onion rings, and paprika mayonnaise sits in between two slices of organic rye bread. With 240 locations in Finland and 80 locations across the Baltics, four in Russia, and three in Germany, Hesburger is Finland's largest food chain.
Chicken Cottage, United Kingdom
From grilled chicken to BBQ chicken to chicken burgers, Chicken Cottage knows its chicken. It is essentially the European equivalent to KFC. It was established in 1994 in Wembley, North London, but customers can now enjoy locations all over the U.K. One item that stands out on the menu is the Lamb Quarter Pounder (a deviation from the heavily chicken-centric menu), which is topped with cheese, a slice of gherkin, onions, and lettuce in a sesame seed bun.