Eating at American fast food chains in Spain
We love food. Getting to experience the local cuisine is always at the top of our priority list when we travel.
Before we take off, we spend an inordinate amount of time researching different dishes and trying to find the best restaurants. But as much as we love a proper meal, junk food is a serious guilty pleasure for us.
There is much love in our hearts for Taco Bell, McDonald’s and other convenient, comforting fast food.
Lately, we’ve decided to embrace this in our travels and seek out fast food items that are not available in the US.
On our recent trip to Madrid and Barcelona, we decided to go to familiar fast food chains and see what they had to offer.
Here are the fast food items we got to try in Spain that you can’t get in the US:
The first fast food chain we went to in Spain was McDonald’s.
It was close to our Airbnb in Madrid and we had some time to kill so it seemed like the most convenient option.
After browsing all the items that we hadn’t seen available at our local McDonald’s in California, we decided to get the McFlurry Filipinos and the McFlurry Caja Roja.
The McFlurry Filipinos had Filipinos blancos (white chocolate covered cookies) and white chocolate sauce.
If we hadn’t ordered the McFlurry Caja Roja at the same time, we probably would have enjoyed this more. There was nothing wrong with this McFlurry, but the Caja Roja version completely blew it out of the water.
McFlurry Caja Roja
Our favorite of the McDonald’s items, this was the best McFlurry either of us has ever had.
It featured chunks of Caja Roja chocolates, which is an assortment of white, dark and milk Nestle chocolates.
This was crunchy, chocolatey, and tasted like it had swirls of Nutella. We couldn’t resist coming back a few times to share another one of these.
Sorry, McFlurry Filipinos, chocolate and hazelnut is just a tough combo to beat.
McCroquetas de Jamón
Croquetas are one of my lifelong favorite foods, so my standards were already set pretty high.
Unfortunately, these McCroquetas did not meet those standards.
I can safely say that these were the worst croquetas we had in Spain, and we ordered croquetas at every restaurant and bar that had them on the menu.
The McCroquetas were absolutely our least favorite fast food item in Spain.
Burrito de Carne y Patatas
Let me start by saying that Taco Bell’s unique items game was strong. Even after repeat visits, we felt like we barely scratched the surface.
They seemed to have the most variety in their menu out of the fast food chains in Spain that we tried.
The burrito de carne y patatas was our favorite savory item that we tried, and we still lament from time to time that this burrito is not available in the US.
It’s a burrito filled with ground beef, fries, Habanero sauce, and sour cream.
It was delicious and it was cheap, which made it the perfect quick snack when we got hungry at odd hours. Or needed something to tide us over until those 9:00 and 10:00 pm dinners that are so common in Spain.
These are chicken nuggets meant to be shaped like nacho chips. They are triangular nuggets served with BBQ sauce and cheese sauce.
These were a bit odd and not something we felt the need to order again.
Bacon Top Fries
The Bacon Top Fries are fries covered with melted cheese and bacon bits. These exceeded our expectations, and, although basic, were pretty tasty overall.
It’s not something we would go out of our way for, but we were pleasantly surprised.
This was my favorite dessert at Taco Bell and one of my favorite fast food items in Spain overall.
The Taquito Lupita is a sundae with vanilla soft serve, a deep fried tortilla, dulce de leche and a dusting of cinnamon sugar.
You got fried stuff, you’ve got ice cream, you’ve got cinnamon, and dulce de leche.
There’s not much else you need to make a banging dessert.
Gordon’s one true love.
We ordered this based purely on how bizarre it sounded. Get some KitKats, put them in a tortilla, and then grill it up like you would with a quesadilla.
Obviously, we had to try it.
Lo and behold, this was by far the most unique item we tried during our trip and one of the tastiest.
We ended many a night in Barcelona by swinging by the closest Taco Bell and ordering one of these.
On one of our return trips to get a KitKat Chocadilla, we decided to branch out and give the Chocomarsh a try.
This was the same concept as the KitKat Chocadilla, but had chocolate and marshmallows instead of KitKats.
I had expected to like this even better than the KitKat version because I love s’mores and this sounded like a weird grilled version of s’mores.
But I was wrong. The Chocomarsh couldn’t hold a candle to our beloved KitKat Chocadilla.
The fast food item we regret not trying at Taco Bell
Crunchwraps are one of our favorite Taco Bell items and we regret not ordering one in Barcelona.
Instead of just the usual ground beef, the crunchwrap was available with chicken, spicy chicken, pork carnitas, beef carnitas or ground beef.
If you love crunchwraps, don’t make the same mistake we did.
Rustic Smoked Cheese
Before we get into this, you need to watch the very dramatic ad for this burger:
The Rustic Smoked Cheese is a burger with smoked cheese, crispy onions, and a stout-based sauce.
This was actually our last meal in Spain. We were at the airport in Barcelona and we had lost track of time browsing around the shops, trying to remember if there was anyone that we had forgotten to buy a souvenir for.
Our boarding time was quickly approaching and Burger King seemed like our fastest food option. I ordered the beef version, and Gordon decided on the chicken.
All in all, we were happy with this. It was a satisfying meal; you could taste the smoke in the cheese, and the bun was a nice rustic brown bread.
We can’t wait to see what special fast food items are available at the next location we travel to.
Which of the items on the list would you want to try the most? Let us know in the comments!
Kat is originally from Puerto Rico and is now living in (almost equally) sunny Southern California. She works at a children’s educational company and travels as much as her vacation time will allow. Some of her favorite hobbies include baking, planning Disney trips, and watching too much Netflix.