Sonic is a pretty fun place to eat, with the carhops on roller skates and all. Given that Sonic focuses on burgers and hot dogs, the menu is smaller for us vegans. But personally, I still think it’s worth the experience.
Vegan options at Sonic Drive-In:
- French Fries
- Tater Tots
- Onion Rings
- Soft Pretzel Twist (substitute the dip)
- Applesauce (kids menu)
- Slushes (frozen drinks)
- Soft drinks and other beverages
You can also have the employees make you a custom vegan sandwich using the buns, veggie toppings, and sauces. And if you brought your own non-dairy ice cream, you could even order some of the vegan ice-cream toppings for it, too.
Keep reading for the full vegan menu at Sonic, along with answers to common questions about the Sonic veggie burger, and whether their Cinnasnacks and French Toast Sticks are vegan!
Fries, Tater Tots, and Onion Rings
The fries, tater tots, and onion rings at Sonic are vegan. They are fried in vegetable oil, not lard. This is a pretty big win. I know I could personally fill up on tater tots and onion rings if I wasn’t worried about eating healthy at all.
Note: These menu items may be fried in the same fryer as animal products, such as the chicken patties or mozzarella sticks. So if you feel strongly opposed to eating foods with that cross-contamination, you may want to skip these options.
Soft Pretzel Twist
Big twisted soft pretzel—fully vegan! But take note: It usually comes with a nacho-cheese kind of dip. So ask if they can switch the cheese dip for something else.
They may have a marinara dipping sauce you can swap in. If not, ask for some of their BBQ sauce or maybe the Asian Sweet Chili Sauce (both of these are vegan).
Here’s a little bonus from the kids menu: an applesauce packet!
Looks like this usually comes in a pouch, and it’s just 3.2 ounces, so not a significant contribution of calories—but it doesn’t hurt to have another little vegan side.
You can ask if they have apple slices for kids. I don’t see it on their website now, but they may be available at some locations. It’s a common addition to the kids menu at fast-food restaurants. (Request “no caramel” if they usually come with caramel.)
Custom Vegan Sandwich or Wrap
Only rare Sonic locations offer an actually veggie burger—and it may not even be vegan (more on that below). But many Sonic locations are willing to scrape you together a vegan sandwich from ingredients they have on hand.
The selection of these sandwich components will vary by location. But here are some items many Sonic locations have on hand to use.
Breads and buns for your sandwich:
- Hamburger Bun
- Hot Dog Bun
- Texas Toast
- Bagel (less common)
- Philly Roll (less common)
Note: When it comes to the bread, Sonic says the top four listed here “May Contain” milk and eggs. I wrote a post on what “may contain milk” usually means and why most vegans don’t worry about it. But in this case, it means something different.
Usually, “may contain milk” just means the product was made in a facility that also uses milk and eggs. So there’s a small chance of cross-contamination, but it’s mainly a disclaimer for those with severe allergies.
In Sonic’s case, each location sources its bread from local sources, so it varies by location. Personally I’d still expect these products to usually be vegan. But you may want to ask your Sonic location if their bread is free of dairy and eggs.
Veggies for your sandwich (Toppings):
- Dill Pickle Chips
- Dill Pickle Spears
- Hatch Green Chiles
- Diced Onion
- Sport Peppers
- Sweet Pickle Relish
Vegan Sauces and Condiments:
- Asian Sweet Chili Sauce
- Celery Salt
- Hickory BBQ
- Salt/Pepper Blend
Note: The Buffalo Sauce, Tartar Sauce, and Signature Sauce contain egg.
Sonic is known for its “Slushes.” Most of these are vegan. The main frozen stuff to avoid at Sonic is just the actual ice cream.
Vegan Slush flavors:
- Cherry Slush
- Blue Raspberry Slush
- Blue Coconut Slush
- Powerade Mountain Berry Blast Slush
- Grape Slush
- Cranberry Slush
- Cherry Limeade Slush (Real Fruit)
- Limeade Slush (Real Fruit)
- Lemonade Slush (Real Fruit)
- Strawberry Real Fruit Slush
Note: Sonic has two “Candy Slush” flavors that contain Nerds. Most Nerds are not fully vegan in the strictest sense. Pink and red Nerds may contain carmine, which is made from crushed up insects (yuck). So if you’re strict about such ingredients, avoid the slushes that contain Nerds.
Soft Drinks and Beverages
Sonic offers Coke products and several teas. All of these are vegan:
- Diet Coke
- Coke Zero
- Dr. Pepper
- Diet Dr. Pepper
- Barq’s Root Beer
- Sprite Zero
- Hi-C Fruit Punch
- Powerade Mountain Berry Blast Drink
- Fanta Orange
- Ocean Water
- Sweet Iced Tea
- Unsweet Iced Tea
- Sweet Green Iced Tea
- Diet Green Iced Tea
- Green Mountain Coffee
- 100% Apple Juice Box
- All Lemonade and Limeade varieties
Vegan Ice Cream Toppings
Sonic doesn’t have vegan ice cream—yet. But they do have plenty of vegan toppings. So if you wanted to bring your own dairy-free ice cream, or eat some of these toppings by themselves, you could.
Here’s the vegan list:
- Fresh Banana
- Maraschino Cherries
- OREO Cookie Pieces
- Peanut Butter Topping
- Strawberry Topping
Does Sonic Have a Veggie Burger?
Some Sonic locations have a veggie burger. We know this because a veggie burger is listed in the nutritional information on the Sonic website. However, it’s definitely not available at all Sonic locations yet.
It’s also unclear if Sonic’s veggie burger is fully vegan—there’s no ingredients list posted on the website. That said, it is likely not vegan, since the nutrition facts says it contains a small amount of cholesterol, which generally only comes from animals.
Are the French Toast Sticks at Sonic Vegan?
The French Toast Sticks at Sonic are not vegan, as they contain milk. This is noted in the Allergen Information on Sonic’s website.
Are Sonic Cinnasnacks Vegan?
Sonic Cinnasnacks are not vegan, as they contain milk and eggs. This is noted in the Allergen Information on Sonic’s website.
Whole-Food Plant-Based Options
When I make these vegan guides to restaurants, I like to include a list of whole-food plant-based options, too. Because a lot of the vegan options are usually things like fries and soda, which are not too healthy.
Honestly, Sonic is one of the hardest fast-food places to eat whole foods. They don’t have any salads. And there’s no sides of fresh veggies.
If you really wanted to eat whole foods at Sonic, you’d pretty much just have to ask for specific toppings. The employees may think you’re weird, but you could do it.
Here would be the whole-food options:
- Applesauce from the kids menu: The image used on their website shows a “No Sugar Added” applesauce packet, so that would count as WFPB. Also you could ask if they have apple slices. I don’t see it on their website now, but they may be available at some locations. (Hold the caramel if they come with caramel.)
- From the Sandwich Toppings: Avocado, Dill Pickle Chips, Dill Pickle Spears, Green Chiles, Jalapeños, Lettuce, Diced Onion, Sauerkraut, Sport Peppers, Tomato.
- From the Ice Cream Toppings: Banana, Lemon, Lime, Pecans.
- Beverages: Unsweet Iced Tea, black coffee, club soda, or water.
So, if you’re strictly WFPB, it’d probably be better just to bring your own food to eat while the rest of your family gets their stuff from Sonic! Or pick a different place all together!
Two More Recommendations for Your Plant-Based Journey
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