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7 Unique Fast Food Menu Items To Try in Other Countries

By Michael Nordine
Read time: 4 minutes

America has a unique connection to fast food, but it certainly doesn’t have a monopoly on it. And while it’s true that our best-known chains have quite the footprint in countries across the world, the foreign locations of these fast-food restaurants often have menu items that aren’t available in the U.S. From chicken tikka masala burritos to bulgogi pizza, here are seven of the most enticing and unique fast-food menu items to try in other countries.

Teritama Burger – Japan

Skyscrapers in Tokyo, Japan, with snow-capped Mount Fuji in background
Credit: Torsakarin/ iStock via Getty Images 

In 1971, McDonald’s opened its first location in Asia on the ground floor of Tokyo’s Ginza Miitsukoshi department store. Today, there are more than 2,800 locations across Japan, second only to China and the United States for most McDonald’s restaurants. Many fast-food lovers consider Japan to have the best McDonald’s in the world, and with good reason. In addition to affordable prices and rumors (sadly debunked) of fry-scented cologne, they also have unique menu items such as maple butter pancake pies, peach smoothies, and fries served with an enticing seasoning known as shaka shaka potato grilled corn. 

Perhaps the most appetizing of all is the teritama burger, a favorite among Japanese customers that was first introduced in 1996 and features apples, ginger, an egg, and a pork patty drizzled in teriyaki sauce with a garlicky twist. It’s only available in the spring, so plan your next visit accordingly.

Chicken Tikka Masala Burrito – India

Busy bazaar in New Delhi, India, seen from above
Credit: hadynyah/ E+ via Getty Images 

One of India’s most internationally popular dishes gets the burrito treatment courtesy of Taco Bell, whose chicken tikka masala burrito features tandoori mayo sauce and cilantro mix alongside grilled chicken, onions, and Mexican rice. It’s far from the only regional item available at Taco Bell restaurants across the world: Korea has kimchi quesadillas, Cyprus has a gordita with fries and tzatziki sauce, and Spain has a taco pizza, to name just a few.

Bulgogi Pizza – South Korea

Narrow winding lane between traditional homes in Bukchon Hanok Village in Seoul, South Korea
Credit: Twenty47studio/ Moment via Getty Images 

Bulgogi, a style of grilled, marinated beef popular in Korea and abroad, has found its way onto pizza at Pizza Hut, which opened its first location in Seoul, South Korea, in 1985. There are two versions of the dish, one of which is fairly traditional — the pizza is topped with thinly sliced beef that’s marinated in a savory and sweet sauce and cooked over a flame (bul means “fire” and gogi translates to “meat”). The other also features sausage and honey mustard sauce. 

Ketchup Nuggets – Canada

Skyline of Toronto, Canada
Credit: NicolasMcComber/ E+ via Getty Images 

It’s a simple fact that most chicken nuggets end up dunked in ketchup, so Burger King in Canada decided to cut out the middleman and create its popular ketchup nuggets. They’re a spin on ketchup chips, which are considered a delicacy in the Great White North, and they allow customers to spend less time dunking their nuggs and more time savoring them. Elsewhere in Canada, McDonald’s has put its own spin on another national favorite: poutine.

Peri-Peri Chicken – South Africa

Skyline of Johannesburg, South Africa
Credit: EunikaSopotnicka/ iStock via Getty Images 

Peri-peri, a tangy sauce whose origins date back to 15th-century Africa and the Portuguese settlers who arrived there, has grown in popularity abroad, particularly thanks to Nando’s, a fast-casual chicken chain. But it was Subway who made a sandwich of it, with South African locations featuring it on their menu. The sauce, which you can try making yourself, gets its distinct flavor from the African bird’s eye chile, also known as the piri-piri.

Chizza – The Philippines

Homes on hillside in Baguio, Philippines
Credit: holgs/ iStock via Getty Images 

KFC’s Chizza — a portmanteau meaning, you guessed it, chicken pizza — is exactly what it sounds like: fried chicken with marinara, mozzarella, and pepperoni. The tantalizing menu item proved so popular upon its introduction to the Philippines in 2015 that it quickly made its way to countries including Taiwan, Thailand, Spain, and Mexico, and even had a brief run in the U.S. earlier this year. 

Time will tell whether they bring it back stateside again, but for now you may have to plan your next international trip around it. It isn’t the only delicious and unique fast-food menu item from KFC Philippines, though. There’s also the Double Down Dog — a hot dog wrapped in fried chicken and cheese. Your taste buds will thank you, even if your heart won’t.

Suya Pizza – Nigeria

Crowded street market in Lagos, Nigeria, seen from above
Credit: peeterv/ iStock via Getty Images 

If you’ve traveled to Nigeria, you’ve likely tried suya, a distinctly spiced skewer most often made from sirloin steak or chicken. Created in northern Nigeria in the 18th century, the dish has become a street-food staple all over West Africa. Anyone who’s been to a Pizza Hut in Nigeria has also had the chance to try suya pizza, of which there are two varieties: one with chicken, barbecue sauce, green peppers, and onions, and the other with pepperoni, beef, and mutton.

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