We are well aware that In-N-Out is not the most vegan-friendly restaurant out there. In-N-Out Burger is, however, trying its best and taking baby steps towards healthier, greener pastures. Over 16,000 people signed a petition in 2016 to make the restaurant add a vegan burger and other vegan options to their menu.
Expectedly, this move received a backlash, with some even comparing it to “adding Chinese food to a pizza place.”
While In-N-Out vegan burgers sound like an oxymoron, if you’re in the vegan food group, here are your vegan options at In-N-Out Burger (for now).
In-N-Out Burger is an American regional chain of fast-food restaurants famous primarily in California and on the West Coast, with over 70 years old in the restaurant business. Currently, it has over 300 locations all over the country and is rated one of the top fast-food restaurants in customer satisfaction surveys.
It’s one of the biggest fast-food chains that hasn’t chosen to franchise its operations and gone public yet because they don’t want to compromise the quality of their food. It remains in the Snyder family with Lynsi Snyder, the founders’ only granddaughter, as president and CEO today.
Primarily, the restaurant sells the famous In-N-Out burger, fries, and shakes that have cultivated a loyal customer fan base.
What Vegans Can Order
If you’re dead-set on a strict vegan journey but want to eat at a nearby In-N-Out location, here are some vegan options at In-N-Out Burger.
Veggie Burger (No Spread)
In-N-Out has its own version of a Veggie Burger for vegetarian and vegan customers. And while it’s nothing like the Plant-based Vegan Burger Whopper from Burger King or like the veggie burgers from other restaurants, it’s a good attempt.
Instead, In-N-Out’s Veggie Burger contains the following fresh ingredients: lettuce, onion, and tomato, with a generous dollop of the secret In-N-Out spread on the toasted bun (the In-N-Out spread is not vegan, though, but we’ll talk about that later). You can opt to add ketchup or mustard instead, which are the only vegan-friendly sauces.
To make the veggie burger more interesting, you can add some more onions as In-N-Out has a whole variety of them. A side of yellow chilies will also add a kick to your otherwise mellow meal. The burger bun can also be toasted if you prefer a crispier bite.
Sandwich or Grilled Cheese Without The Cheese
You can also order a grilled cheese sandwich at In-N-Out, but without the cheese, of course. Without the two slices of melted American cheese, the sandwich will only contain lettuce, onion, and tomato, and while it’s not the most appealing, it definitely pairs well with a basket of french fries.
Vegans should stay away from the In-N-Out milkshakes as they don’t have a non-dairy vegan option. The fast-food restaurant does have an extensive list of vegan-friendly beverages, including:
- Sodas: like Coca-cola, Diet Coke, 7-Up, Dr. Pepper, Barq’s Root Beer,
- Juices: Iced tea, pink lemonade, Minute Maid Zero Sugar Lemonade
- Hot drinks: including coffee and sweet tea
In-N-Out’s french fries won’t pose a threat to vegans as they are made from 100 percent fresh-cut potatoes and lightly dusted with rock salt. The crispy fries are deep-fried in sunflower oil (without animal products like animal fat) and can be ordered well done or light well, depending on your preference.
As far as we know, no other food item on the menu is deep-fried in sunflower oil, so there’s no need to worry about any cross-contamination when you eat it.
However delicious it may be, the famous Animal Style Fries is not vegan friendly as the fries are coated with the famous In-N-Out spread (mayonnaise-based).
In-N-Out Offerings You Should Look Out For
The famous secret sauce of In-N-Out Burger is not vegan, unfortunately. It’s made with a base of mayonnaise, which uses egg as its main ingredient. It’s often referred to as a variation on the thousand island dressing.
Just like other hot chocolate, this hot drink from In-N-Out Burger is also most certainly not vegan.
As a vegan, you should also watch out for the grilled onions at In-N-Out Burger. The onions are grilled alongside the meat burger patties so there will always be a potential for cross-contamination.
Make Your Own In-N-Out Vegan Spread
Just because you’re vegan, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the In-N-Out Secret Sauce alongside your homemade veggie burger. Here is the simple vegan-friendly version you can make at home. You can also use it to coat your version of the restaurant’s Animal Style Fries!
- 2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise 
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 2 tablespoons pickle relish
Simply mix all the ingredients thoroughly. This recipe is also highly customizable, so you are free to make adjustments according to your taste preference.
You can also make a big batch of the In-N-Out vegan spread and store it in your fridge inside a tightly sealed container, so you have easy access anytime you wish.
Unfortunately, no. In-N-Out Burger does not offer the impossible burger as of today. You may also want to know if Five Guys have vegan burger options.
Yes, In-N-Out has a not-so-secret secret menu — while the secret menu items might not be displayed in restaurants, they can be seen and accessed through the website.
Yes. All ketchup is vegan, including In-N-Out’s.
In-N-Out’s shakes are most certainly not vegan as they all use real ice cream (made from milk). You may opt for their sodas instead for a vegan-friendly option.
While the In-N-Out fast-food chain may not be the top choice for most vegans, it's great to know that the restaurant tries its best to provide good vegan options.
The restaurant is most famous for their french fries, though, which we believe is a pretty good reason to pay a visit!