27 fast-food menu items from US chains that you find in Japan

NurPhoto / Contributor/Getty ImagesJapan serves some classic fast-food options and some with its own unique twist.
  • Domino’s Japan offers pies you’ve never dreamed of, including a lasagna pizza.
  • McDonald’s McCafe sells macarons and elegant little desserts.
  • Wendy’s in Japan serves pasta and soup in bread bowls.
  • KFC Japan biscuits look like doughnuts.

While Japan has its own great fast-food options, American travellers may also come across US fast-food brands like Domino’s, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, and more. But the menus may look different to a US tourist.

Not everything served at fast-food restaurants in Japan is as unique as those Burger King burgers with black buns, but there’s definitely a wide variety of things you probably won’t see anywhere else.

Check out some of the best fast-food options from American brands below.

The McDonald’s Filet-O-Shrimp is a must-try.

Flickr/ RickIt is listed on the Japanese menu as Filet-O Ebi.

The patty consists of big, plump shrimp surrounded by crispy, deep-fried breading.

If you love teriyaki sauce on everything, try a Teriyaki McBurger or Chicken Teriyaki Filet at McDonald’s.

McDonald’s JapanTeriyaki McBurger.

The Teriyaki McBurger features a pork patty smothered in sauce – and the Chicken Teriyaki Filet features a crispy fried chicken filet treated the same way.

This Gran Garlic Pepper burger would be a hit anywhere, but you can only get it at McDonald’s locations in Japan.

McDonald’s JapanGran Garlic Pepper Burger.

Local tastes can be different everywhere, but the Gran Garlic Pepper burger features a peppery garlic sauce that would satisfy nearly everyone.

McDonald’s lets diners season their own fried chicken at Japanese locations with Shaka Shaka Chicken.

McDonald’s JapanShake Shaka Chicken.

This item features crispy fried piece of chicken that you can shake in a bag with your favourite seasoning packet. It’s called Shaka Shaka Chicken and includes spicy red pepper or cheddar cheese powders to season your food.

If you’re someone who thinks that everything is better with tartar sauce, you might want to try Burger King’s Tartar Chicken sandwich.

Burger King JapanTartar Chicken Sandwich.

This is exactly what it sounds like – a BK fried chicken filet dressed with tartar sauce.

If you dream of crispy hash brown puffs with cheese, Burger King Cheesy Bites are the side for you.

Burger King JapanCheesy Bites.

It’s not quite a tater tot or a hush puppy, but BK Cheesy Bites could probably be a cousin of both of those things.

There’s an entire pasta menu at the First Kitchen and Wendy’s collaboration.

Wendy’s JapanCarbonara pasta.

In 2015, Wendy’s purchased Japanese fast-food chain First Kitchen and then began combining the two restaurant concepts (First Kitchen was known for its pasta and Wendy’s was known for its burgers) to form something entirely new in the Japanese market.

From pasta with beef cheeks to carbonara, you can now have a big bowl of pasta while your dining companion has a burger at Wendy’s First Kitchen.

Wendy’s First Kitchen isn’t afraid to put eggs on its burgers.

Wendy’s JapanCheese Bacon Egg Burger.

If you love eggs on your burgers, Wendy’s First Kitchen might have to be a stop for you. You can get the Mushroom Melt Cheese, Bacon, and Egg burger or a regular Bacon and Egg burger – with or without cheese. According to Paolo from Tokyo, the garlic mayo on the Cheese Bacon Egg burger tastes a bit like tartar sauce.

The Wendy’s Umami Chicken Tatsuta sandwich features extremely crispy chicken.

Wendy’s JapanUmami Chicken Tatsuta.

That’s probably because of its frying process – the marinated chicken’s coating uses potato starch to get its unique, shatteringly crispy texture. This sandwich also features a bed of fluffy shredded cabbage instead of lettuce.

In addition to chilli, Wendy’s First Kitchen also offers a selection of soups and stews in bread bowls.

Wendy’s JapanBeef stew.

These are on the smaller side which makes them super adorable – Paolo from Tokyo has the evidence in this YouTube video (it starts around the 5:20 mark).

Fries at Wendy’s First Kitchen come in various flavours, including Potato Flavored Potato.

Wendy’s JapanPotato flavour potato.

From Burnt Butter Soy Sauce Potato flavour to Wild Smoked Cheese, Wendy’s First Kitchen has spud lovers covered.

If you’re craving a float, Wendy’s First Kitchen offers 11 different kinds, all featuring Hokkaido Soft Cream.

Wendy’s JapanMatcha float.

Soft-serve fans, rejoice – from matcha floats to Coke floats, you have options.

Wendy’s First Kitchen also offers its take on an iconic Japanese dessert: shiratama zenzai.

Wendy’s JapanShiratama zenzai.

Their version features Hokkaido soft cream, sweet red beans, and those beautiful, fluffy little mochi pillows that give this dessert its name.

You can get soup at KFC Japan.

KFC JapanMinestrone soup.

If the minestrone looks remotely similar to the photo, it’s probably pretty tasty.

KFC Japan potatoes may look a bit different than what Americans are used to.

KFC JapanColoneling Potatoes.

These almost seem spiralized.

KFC Japan biscuits look like doughnuts.

KFC JapanBiscuits.

It definitely looks like they have layers.

This KFC chicken sandwich is sweet and crunchy.

KFC JapanWa-Fu chicken cutlet sandwich.

The Wa-Fu chicken cutlet sandwich has both shredded cabbage and a sweet honey glaze.

The Kernel Monaca Ice is a tasty dessert featuring the face of Colonel Sanders.

KFC JapanKernel Monaca Ice.

The center is vanilla ice cream.

KFC Japan also offers Krushers, which are like drinkable desserts.

KFC JapanStrawberry Millefeullie Krusher.

The Classic Chocolat tastes and feels like drinkable pudding, according to YouTubers JP & Julia. There’s also a Strawberry Millefeuille flavour available.

Roast beef and gravy is a pizza option at Domino’s.

Domino’s JapanRoast Beef and Gravy.

If you feel that chicken has no place on your pizza, there’s always this roast beef and gravy one.

The seafood special at Domino’s is available with your choice of tomato or white sauce.

Domino’s JapanSeafood special.

Snow crab and shrimp cavort merrily over your taste buds amid a lava flow of either tomato or white sauce.

If you like your pizza crossed with a grilled cheese, the Quattro Camembert Mille-Feuille at Domino’s may be your jam.

Domino’s JapanQuattro Camembert Mille-Feuille.

Stuffed crust pizzas usually only cram cheese into the edge of the crust that surrounds the outside of your pie – not in between layers of crust that undergird the whole thing. That’s the special thing about the Quattro Camembert Mille-Feuille, which also comes with four sets of toppings.

Tomato and basil, pancetta and olive, shrimp and garlic, and ham and mushroom make up this Quattro combo.

When you can’t choose between your favourite pasta dish and a pizza, order a Lasagna Pizza at Domino’s.

Domino’s JapanLasagna Pizza.

It comes with bolognese and white sauces, of course.

Galbi doesn’t seem like it would typically belong on pizza, but on a Domino’s Goryeo Galbi pie, it does.

Domino’s JapanGoryeo Galbi.

This garlicky delight, incidentally, does not come with tomato sauce.

Crab gratin pizza at Domino’s in Japan gives diners extra carbs.

Domino’s JapanCrab Gratin.

Not only do you get crab, pancetta, and white sauce, you also get sliced potatoes on this pizza.

Shrimp mayonnaise pizza at Domino’s is here for all your sweeter-side-of-savoury cravings.

Domino’s JapanShrimp mayonnaise.

With shrimp, corn, mayo, and cheese, this almost seems like a chowder in pie form.

The Domino’s Mayo Jaga sounds like a thin potato gratin on a pizza.

Potato with sizzling hot mayo and cheese almost screams “American Thanksgiving side dish.”

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