8 Fast-Food Chains That Serve the Best Coffee

8 Fast-Food Chains That Serve the Best Coffee Meaning: If you use these links to buy something, we will not earn a commission. There’s something special about finding a new go-to coffee spot—even better when that establishment is a fast-food joint known for its burgers and fries. Hitting the drive-thru for a coffee was once a gamble undertaken only on long-haul road trips or desperate early-morning outings. No longer. As fast-food chains step up their coffee offerings to vie for a spot in Americans’ caffeine-jolted routines, top-notch coffee served alongside fast-food fare is now the norm. And lucky us! Think of the perks. From a convenience standpoint, nothing beats a fast-food coffee run. You get your caffeine fix without leaving your vehicle. Plus, there’s the bonus of consistency at a chain; you’ll get what you want every time. And the coffee at fast-food chains is cheap—a hot coffee at McDonald’s is usually less expensive than one sold at a dedicated coffee shop. Fast-food chains have invested in elevated iced coffee offerings for a while, but don’t sleep on the hot coffee offerings. Quality drip coffee is sold at many fast-food establishments, and these eight chains serve the best of the best. Read on. Chick-fil-A Calories: 0 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 10 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 0 g For a chicken joint, Chick-fil-A’s coffee has no business being this good. But the secret to the coffee’s tastiness lies in its sourcing: Chick-fil-A brews specialty coffee beans sustainably sourced from Thrive Farmers, a farmer-direct, specialty-grade coffee purveyor. Rich and nutty, this caramel-tasting coffee has a natural hint of sweetness. It’s not watery, and it’s not bitter. The most interesting part? It’s a custom Arabica blend coffee made to pair with the menu, so don’t be afraid to order a chicken sandwich or two to go with it! For $2, it’s worth a try. (The iced coffee is also delish.) Wendy’s One Regular Hot Coffee (Medium) Calories: 5 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 10 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 0 g Coffee may not come to mind when you think of Wendy’s, but the burger chain serves up a more-than-passable cup of coffee. Made from medium-roasted Arabica beans from Central and South America, Wendy’s serves it up rich—and hot, thanks to well-insulated cups that keep the drink hotter for longer. Given that the fast-food joint relaunched its breakfast menu in 2020, it makes sense to brew up a great cup of java to go with the yummy breakfast options. Breakfast Baconator, anyone? The price for a small cup is just 99 cents. Culver’s One Regular Coffee Calories: 0 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 0 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 0 g This Wisconsin-based fast-food chain is known for its ButterBurgers and frozen custard, but don’t sleep on its coffee. Again, sourcing is key: Culver’s serves Blue Spoon Blend, roasted by Torke Coffee, a family-owned and operated Wisconsin coffee roaster. The freshness of the cup, with notes of cocoa, berries, and fruit, stands out the most, thanks to the small-batch roasting process. It’s smooth, delish, and Rainforest Alliance-certified. Try a cup for around $2.49, and don’t look back. Jack in the Box One Premium Roast Coffee (12 fl. oz) Calories: 5 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 5 mg Carbs: 1 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 0 g If you’re used to swinging by Jack in the Box for its signature tacos, you may be pleased to discover the chain also serves coffee, and good coffee at that. The High Mountain Arabica coffee is fresh and medium-bodied without that weird bitter taste. There is a smoky flavor that comes through in the roast. At around $1.59 for a small cup, it’s no gamble to try it next time you swing by the drive-thru for a breakfast sandwich. White Castle One Regular Coffee (Medium) Calories: 5 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 10 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 1 g White Castle is known for its sliders, but coffee is also on the menu. In fact, coffee was one of the chain’s four original menu items when it opened in Wichita, Kan., in 1921. Customers could also order the original slider, pie, or Coca-Cola. The White Castle Original Restaurant Blend is roasted from 100% Arabica beans from Central and South America, which results in a rich, bold, medium-roast coffee. One perk? White Castle’s signature blend is sold in grocery stores so that coffee cravers can enjoy it from home. A cup will set you back 99 cents. McDonald’s Premium Roast Brewed Coffee (Medium) Calories: 4 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 10 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 1 g McDonald’s Premium Roast Brewed Coffee is the most basic offering in the McCafe line, and it’s a staple—and one of the most consistent in the biz. While some cheap coffees tend toward bitter and burnt (like many a hotel breakfast cup), McDonald’s coffee is far from that. Yes, it’s on the watery side, but it’s a great choice for those looking for middle-of-the-road coffee, free from the bitterness that often plagues gas station coffee. The coffee takes well to a bit of cream and sugar, thanks to subtle notes of cocoa. At about $1, it’s a no-brainer for a quick caffeine fix. Carl’s Jr. Regular Medium Coffee (20 fl. oz.) Calories: 5 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 0 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 0 g In a sea of medium roast fast-food coffee, Carl’s Jr. stands out due to its bold blend. The West Coast-based chain slings a premium dark roast coffee made from 100 percent Arabica beans from Guatemala and Peru alongside its signature charbroiled burgers. Dark roast lovers will gravitate to this strong, aromatic coffee. It’s got a deep, full-bodied taste. If you’re tired of breakfast-style, light-bodied coffees, Carl’s Jr. is a rare fast-food joint committed to serving a full-tasting dark roast coffee with a smooth finish. And the price is right at around $1. Whataburger Regular Medium Coffee (16 fl. oz.) Calories: 5 Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g) Sodium: 10 mg Carbs: 0 g (Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 0 g) Protein: 1 g This Texas burger chain has long kept it simple regarding coffee—but it’s a rising star. Last year, Whataburger debuted a line of iced and hot coffees at select stores, and it’s now testing a new coffee blend that pairs well with menu items ranging from cinnamon rolls to burgers. Of all the hot coffee picks, this is the lightest. For coffee drinkers who enjoy a lighter roast, this 100% Arabica mild coffee blend may be the ticket—a small cup retails for $1.69. If Whataburger’s recent investment into coffee research is any indication, there may be more new brews on the horizon.

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