Fast Food Onion Rings, Ranked Best To Worst

If you enjoy onion rings, you are aware that not all fast-food restaurants are the same. Others turn them into a soggy, flavourless mess, while others make them crispy and tasty.

In order to help you choose where to sate your cravings, we’ve listed the top fast-food onion rings in this post from best to worst.

Fast Food Onion Rings, Ranked Best To Worst

Nationwide, onion rings are a preferred side dish in fast food restaurants. They have a crunchy, salty flavour that many people adore and are a fantastic substitute for regular French fries.

Onion rings are not all made equal, though, and certain chains are renowned for producing them better than others.

Based on their flavour, texture, and general quality, we’ll rate the greatest and worst fast-food onion rings in this post.

1. Culver’s onion rings

When it comes to Culver’s onion rings, they are perfect in every way. First of all, they are beautiful to the point of death.

These majestic beings are always a deep golden brown colour, always thick, and never fall apart.

Second, when you bite into one of these onion rings, you’ll notice how perfectly crunchy it is, how well-seasoned the outside is, and how the onion flavour is so good that you’ll reach for another one right away.

 Culver's onion rings

The onions they use are sweet on their own, and when that sweetness is mixed with the salt, the result is stunning.

When you order onion rings from Culver’s, you don’t have to give up taste or style.

About 10 million orders of onion rings are sold at Culver’s every year. If you try these things just once, you’ll see why they are so famous.

You shouldn’t go anywhere else in the fast food world if you want the best onion rings.

2. Whataburger’s onion rings

Most of the time, people don’t like greasy onion rings and look down on them. But at Whataburger, the grease is part of what makes their onion rings so tasty.

The onion rings at Whataburger are super crunchy, super tasty, super greasy, and super tasty. After you finish your first box of rings, you’ll be tempted to go back for more.

The onion rings at Whataburger aren’t always pretty, just like the ones at Jack in the Box. But when it comes to how they taste, you will never be less than thrilled. Even if you let them cool down completely, they still have a lot of taste.

 Whataburger's onion rings

Even better, Whataburger’s famous ketchup is the best way to eat onion rings anywhere in the world.

If you’ve never tried their ketchup, you should know that it’s so good that it’s sold in shops. If you put this ketchup on your onion rings, you’ll be in onion ring heaven.

3. Dairy Queen’s onion rings

As a general rule, if you go to Dairy Queen, you should stick to their sweets. They have a lot of great Blizzard choices and sweet treats like the Chocolate Dipped Cone and the Buster Bar.

If you don’t stick to the dessert menu, you might end up with a bad burger or chili cheese dog.

But Dairy Queen’s onion rings are the one exception to this rule. Even though these rings aren’t desserts, they’re worth every penny you pay for them and more.

Dairy Queen's onion rings

The best thing about Dairy Queen’s onion rings is that they come out piping hot. So, try to eat them right away, because they aren’t nearly as good after they cool down.

If you eat these onion rings while they’re still hot, the juices will burst in your mouth as the crispiness tickles your senses.

Did you pick them up at a drive-thru? If you have a long way to go home, stop in the parking lot so you can eat these onion rings while they are still good.

4. BurgerFi’s onion rings

A lot of fast food onion rings look like they came from the same factory or could be linked. That’s not the case at all at BurgerFi.

These are different from any other onion rings you’ve seen. The rings aren’t too thick, but they are very wide.

Even though the changed look doesn’t make a big difference in taste, the feel is great. The onion rings at BurgerFi are double-battered and cut by hand.

 BurgerFi's onion rings

They are crunchy all the way through and are easy to dip. The only small letdown is that you don’t get many of these wide rings with your order because they take up so much room.

Even though BurgerFi has only been around for a few years, its focus on offering natural, high-quality food has quickly made everyone take notice.

This fast food place doesn’t sell mass-produced items from questionable sources, and their onion rings are another example.

5. Jack in the Box’s onion rings

As far as looks go, the onion rings at Jack in the Box aren’t that great. When you first see them, you might not like how messy they look or how their shapes aren’t the same.

Some will be small, some will be big, and some will be broken to the point where they can no longer be called bands.

But when you eat Jack in the Box’s onion rings, you’ll be reminded that you can’t judge a book by its cover.

Even though they aren’t very pretty, your taste buds will tell you that they are very tasty.

Jack in the Box's onion rings

When you consider that you can usually get these onion rings for around two dollars, the reasonable part of your brain may fall in love.

If the idea of tacos made in a Western way sounds good to you, it’s easy to get them at Jack in the Box.

Just order two of Jack’s famous tacos, a side of onion rings, and a container of BBQ sauce.

Then, fill the tacos with onion rings and put barbecue sauce all over them. Now you have cheap tacos with a Western-style that will fill you up.

6. The Habit Burger Grill’s onion rings

If you always get the onion rings at The Habit Burger Grill, you won’t be let down. All of their rings are really good.

They put a lot of spices in the batter, so the onion rings taste so good that you probably don’t even need a sauce.

If you want a sauce, The Habit Burger Grill has a really good fry sauce that people love.

If you can’t decide between French fries and onion rings, all you have to do at The Habit Burger Grill is order the Half & Half.

The Habit Burger Grill's onion rings

The basket will then be filled with half fries and half onion rings. It’s the best of both worlds.

The Half & Half doesn’t help, though, if one of their other sides is more interesting.

The Habit Burger Grill has great sweet potato fries and green beans in tempura, which could make your problem even worse.

But if you like onion rings, you won’t be unhappy with what they have to offer, so if you’re not sure, just get their rings.

7. Steak ‘n Shake’s onion rings

At Steak ‘n Shake, you can order a medium or large basket of onion rings, or you can get them as a side for your steakburger.

Here, a large order of onion rings is big enough to be a meal on its own, which may be tempting for people who really like onion rings.

Steak ‘n Shake’s rings are better than normal, which will make those people happy. They are like what you get at Carl’s Jr., but you don’t have to worry about bits and they have an even better crunch.

 Steak 'n Shake's onion rings

Should you get Steak ‘n Shake’s rings? Most of the time, you shouldn’t. That’s because their fries are just better.

There are Seasoned Fries, Thin ‘n Crispy Fries, Cheese Fries, Chili Cheese Fries, and Bacon Cheese Fries on the menu at Steak ‘n Shake.

All of their french fries are great. Choose one of their many kinds of fries instead of onion rings unless you really, really love onion rings.

8. Carl’s Jr.’s onion rings

Carl’s Jr. has onion rings that taste pretty good. When it comes to taste, these bad boys are well above average.

Every bite is juicy, and everything has the right taste. The only problem with Carl’s Jr.’s onion rings is that they leave a lot of bits behind.

It’s best to wait until you’re back at a table to eat while driving. If you don’t, you’ll have crumbs all over your clothes by the time you get out of your car.

Carl's Jr.'s onion rings

The good news is that there is a way to fix the bad thing about their onion rings. Order a Western Bacon Cheeseburger instead of their rings as a side.

This burger is a must-try because it has a patty made of 100% beef, gooey American cheese, two strips of bacon, tasty barbecue sauce, a sesame seed bun, and many onion rings.

With the onion rings inside the burger, you don’t have to worry about the crumbs and can just enjoy their taste. Problem solved!

9. Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers’ onion rings

More than 30 states have Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers sites.

Freddy’s has a lot of interesting sides, like cheese curds, chili cheese fries, and chili, in addition to steakburgers and frozen desserts. They also have onion rings that stand out for how full they are.

Even though it can be a good thing when it comes to onion rings, Freddy’s rings aren’t higher on this list because of how thick they are.

Their onion rings are not soft and fun to eat. Instead, they are so thick that they are hard to chew.

 Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers' onion rings

Even though the taste is better than normal, the jaw workout you get from eating these is not the best.

If you order these onion rings, you might be tempted to take off the covering and eat it by itself, leaving the thick onion behind.

When it’s time to choose a side dish at Freddy’s, choose either fries or cheese curds. Also a good choice is chili.

10. Fatburger’s onion rings

It’s also risky to order onion rings at Fatburger, but for a totally different reason. Consistency is the problem at Fatburger.

You sometimes get really good rings that are just the right amount of crisp and have a lot of taste.

If Fatburger’s onion rings are at their best, they probably deserve to be in the top five of this list.

But most of the time, this fast food place will serve you onion rings that aren’t even close to their best.

Fatburger's onion rings

Sometimes Fatburger’s onion rings are way too greasy and aren’t cooked all the way through.

The end result is a greasy mess that isn’t worth the work. Even if you force yourself to swallow all the rings, it’s likely that oil will get on your clothes.

Fatburger says that their onion rings are made from scratch, which could be a problem.

Even though a lot of the competition has it down to a science, whether or not your Fatburger onion rings are good may depend on how good the cook is.

Go ahead and order their rings if you feel lucky. If not, choose something safer.

11. White Castle’s onion rings

It’s a surprisingly bad idea to order onion rings at White Castle. First, make sure that what you order is made of onions and not birds.

Chicken Rings are sold at White Castle, and they taste even worse than they sound. Seriously, never order these rings on purpose because they are made of chicken.

It’s important enough that the White Castle employee should read back your order before you pay.

The second thing is that White Castle has something called “Onion Chips.” You also do not want these things.

White Castle's onion rings

Even though they’re not as bad as the Chicken Rings, Onion Chips are just lazy, boring, and not very tasty. They taste more like French fries than they do like onion rings.

If you do get White Castle’s onion rings, the best you can say about them is “meh.” Their onion rings aren’t bad, and they’re better than any other onion rings on this list.

But are they worth the chance of getting Chicken Rings or Onion Chips instead? Actually, no.

12. A&W’s onion rings

When compared to other fast food, A&W’s onion rings aren’t very good. However, they should be given credit for making onion rings famous by adding them to their menu in the 1960s.

Compared to other fast food onion rings on the market today, A&W’s are weirdly dry and don’t have much taste.

If one thing you like about onion rings is that they are juicy, you will hate what A&W sells. If you order this side dish, you should bring a big drink to help you wash it all down.

A&W's onion rings

At A&W, things aren’t all bad, though. Unlike Arctic Circle, A&W’s onion rings come with a really good sauce to dip them in.

One of their signature sauces is the Spicy Papa Dipping Sauce, which you may have tasted on the Spicy Papa Burger.

Since their onion rings are dry and don’t have much taste, the spice in this sauce is a godsend.

If you like hot food, the combination of A&W’s hot Papa Digging Sauce and onion rings might make you want to come back again and again.

13. Arctic Circle’s onion rings

Arctic Circle is a fast food company that has locations in Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Oregon, Washington, and Nevada.

They are similar to Dairy Queen in that they are mostly known for their sweet treats. But their main menu includes things like burgers, chicken, fish, soups, and, yes, onion rings.

The onion rings at Arctic Circle are just not that good. When you first see them, you’ll feel hopeful.

 Arctic Circle's onion rings

When you pick up one of the rings and see how weak and useless it is, you’ll realize you made a mistake in getting them. Arctic Circle’s onion rings become unappetizing due to being too wet.

Even worse, Arctic Circle doesn’t have any good sauces for dipping. The Original Fry Sauce, which they say they made more than 60 years ago, is their best sauce.

This sauce, which tastes mostly like mayonnaise and ketchup with a bit of vinegar added, is okay, but it doesn’t help Arctic Circle’s onion rings in any way.

14. Long John Silver’s onion rings

On the one hand, it’s great that Long John Silver’s even offers onion rings. You might not expect to be able to get onion rings at a fast food place that serves fish.

On the other hand, they aren’t that good. This is a fact that can’t be changed.

Even though your order of onion rings from Long John Silver’s might be good sometimes, it’s usually a big letdown.

In fact, the problem is the reverse of what went wrong with Burger King’s version.

Long John Silver's onion rings

Instead of not using real onions, Long John Silver’s onion rings have too much onion and not enough batter.

There are bare spots everywhere on these rings, and that’s just not okay.

These onion rings went viral after people discovered that Long John Silver’s meal was the unhealthiest diner meal ever.

For the record, 19.5 grams of trans fat are in a serving of their onion rings, which is a lot.

15. Sonic Drive-In’s onion rings

The Sonic Drive-In onion rings should have a warning sign. If you aren’t ready for what’s coming, you won’t be a happy guy.

A good onion ring is sweet, savoury, and salty all at the same time, but Sonic’s onion rings are weirdly and annoyingly sweet.

If you didn’t get a warning, it might take you a few times for the phone to ring before you figure out what’s going on. At some point, you’ll realize that you’re getting a bit of vanilla.

Sonic Drive-In's onion rings

What are these onion rings for? People say that Sonic puts vanilla ice cream in the batter. In theory, that sounds like something that could be tasty.

In the real world, it just doesn’t work that well. After a while, the vanilla flavor starts to overpower everything else you like about onion rings, and that’s all you’ll be able to taste.

If you want vanilla ice cream from Sonic, there are lots of choices on their ice cream menu that will work. Sadly, you’re out of luck if you want onion rings that actually taste like onion rings.

16. Burger King’s onion rings

When you bite into one of Burger King’s onion rings, you’ll find something very bad that will make you stop in your tracks.

Burger King doesn’t use real onion rings. Instead, they use a strange paste that tastes like onion.

Fast food restaurants sometimes cut corners when making their food, but this is ridiculous. How can onion rings be served without onions? That’s not acceptable.

Lorde said it best when she reviewed onion rings on a hidden Instagram account she used to run.

Burger King's onion rings

She called the onion paste Burger King uses “mulched onion filling” and gave their onion rings a one on her scale of one to five, which is the lowest possible score.

Even if you have to have onion rings and nothing else will do, don’t even think about going to Burger King.

Just let yourself die. These horrible things should make every other onion ring in the world angry.

Conclusion

When it comes to onion rings from fast food places, some are just better than others.

Whether you like onion rings with a crunchy covering, a sweet or spicy taste, or in a big size, there is a chain that will meet your needs.

Use our detailed guide to find the best fast food onion rings so you can enjoy this tasty side dish.

So the next time you’re at a fast food chain and want onion rings, think about our ranks and try some of the best ones.

Keep in mind that you should eat onion rings in moderation as they are a treat.

FAQs – Fast Food Onion Rings, Ranked Best To Worst 

What are fast food onion rings made of?

Fast food chains typically dip thinly sliced onions in a batter made of flour, milk or beer, and spices to make onion rings. They deep-fry the battered onions until they turn crispy and golden brown.

Are fast food onion rings vegan?

Most onion rings from fast food restaurants are not vegan because the filling usually has milk or eggs in it. But there are some fast food places that serve vegan onion rings made with plant-based ingredients.

How many calories are in fast-food onion rings?

The number of calories in onion rings from fast food depends on the chain and the size of the order. On average, 400 to 500 calories are in a plate of onion rings.

Are fast food onion rings gluten-free?

Most onion rings from fast food places are not gluten-free because the filling has wheat flour in it. But some stores offer gluten-free onion rings made with flours other than wheat.

What is the best way to reheat fast-food onion rings?

The best way to reheat onion rings from a fast food restaurant is to put them in a 350°F oven or toaster oven for 5–10 minutes, until they are hot and crispy again.

Can you freeze fast-food onion rings?

Yes, you can freeze onion rings from a fast food place if you put them in a container or freezer bag that keeps air out. Put them in the oven or toaster oven at 350°F for 10–15 minutes, or until they are warm all the way through.

How long do fast-food onion rings last in the fridge?

To keep fast food onion rings fresh, you should store them in an airtight container and place them in the fridge. They will stay good for 3–4 days.

Are fast food onion rings gluten-free?

Most onion rings from fast food places are not gluten-free because the filling has wheat flour in it. But some stores offer gluten-free onion rings made with flours other than wheat.

What is the best dipping sauce for fast-food onion rings?

The best sauce to dip fast food onion rings in is up to the person eating them. Ranch dressing, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, and ketchup are some of the most common choices.

How do you make fast food-style onion rings at home?

To make fast food-style onion rings at home, cut a large onion into thick rings, dip them in a batter made of flour, milk or beer, and spices, and deep-fry them until they are crispy and golden brown. Serve with the sauce you like best.

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