I have to admit; Wendy’s is a weakness. I love their ground beef. After going paleo and discovering my soy allergy during a Whole30 along with my doctor’s help, I thought I would have to give up one of the three fast food places I go to on occasion, the other two being Carl’s Jr and Five Guys. Because I knew there would be times I would have to grab something in the spur of the moment, I went through all of the possibilities of soy at Wendy’s.
After reviewing all the ingredients used by Wendy’s in their food I have discovered:
1. They do not declare soybean oil as an allergen. It isn’t shady; the FDA does not require soybean oil to be reported as they erroneously think that all people with soy allergies can tolerate soybean oil. Wendy’s is 100 % compliant with the regulation. I react to soybean oil, so I am grateful that Wendys does list soybean oil in their ingredients list at the minimum.
2. I was pleased to see that Wendy’s does list soy lecithin as an allergen for soy. The FDA does not require soy lecithin to be declared by the same erroneous thinking they have of soybean oil.
3. I have listed iffy ingredients down:
A. Xanthan Gum can be made from corn, wheat, soy, or a combo of these ingredients.
B. Citric Acid can be made from soy, corn, wheat, dairy or Xanthan gum.
C. Natural Flavoring. Natural flavoring can be made from soy or anything else for that matter. Please see my article “Processed Foods – It’s a food carnival” for more information.
4. Most of the drinks have no ingredients listed on the website. One can assume that like Coca-Cola, the unlisted beverages would contain the minimum of natural flavors.
Soy At Wendy’s
Products listed upfront as containing soy.
- Wendy’s declares SOY on all of their hamburger offerings up front as they include American Cheese. They also contain the undeclared bun and sauces.
- Grilled Asiago Ranch Chicken Club
- Grilled Chicken Sandwich
- Crispy Chicken BLT
- Grilled Chicken Wrap
- Southwest Avocado Chicken Salad
- Taco Salad
- Power Mediterranean Chicken Salad
- Apple Pecan Chicken Salad Full Size
- Baconator® Fries
- Chili Cheese Fries
- Bacon Cheese Baked Potato
- Chili & Cheese Baked Potato
- Cheese Baked Potato
- Classic Chocolate Frosty®
- Vanilla Frosty®
- Chocolate Chunk Cookie
- Double Chocolate Chunk Cookie
- Artisan Egg Sandwich with Bacon
- Artisan Egg Sandwich with Sausage
- Biggie Breakfast Sandwich
- Sausage and Gravy Biscuit
- Bacon Egg Cheese Biscuit
- Sausage Egg Cheese Biscuit
- Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit
- Sausage Biscuits
- Egg & Sausage Burritos
- All Breakfast Bowls
Wendy’s does not list SOY as an allergen upfront on the following products.
- Southwest Avocado Chicken Sandwich – Uses Premium Bun, Southwest Ranch Sauce, Spicy Chicken Breast
- Spicy Chicken Sandwich – Premium bun, Spicy Chicken Breast, Mayonnaise
- Homestyle Chicken Sandwich – Premium bun, homestyle chicken breast, Mayonnaise
- Homestyle Asiago Ranch Chicken Club – Premium bun, homestyle chicken breast
- Spicy Asiago Ranch Chicken Club – Premium Bun, Ranch Dressing, Spicy Chicken Breast
- Crispy Chicken Nuggets – See below
- Chicken Tenders – See Below
- Crispy Chicken Sandwich – Sandwich Bun, Mayonnaise, Crispy Chicken Patty
- Spicy chicken wrap – Tortilla, Ranch Sauce, Spicy Chicken Breast
- Spicy Caesar Chicken Salad – Ceasar Dressing, Spicy Chicken Breast
- Caesar Side Salad – Ceaser Dressing
- French Fries – See Below
- Seasoned Home-style Potatoes: The website contains 0 ingredients for this item. Considering they fry with vegetable oil containing soybean oil, I would assume these potatoes would have that minimum. I hope they list the ingredients for this product soon.
Break Down of Ingredients used at Wendy’s in case Wendy’s is your only choice.
Soy At Wendy’s – Soy Safe
- 1/4 lb hamburger. Ingredients state ground beef and salt. Be aware that the site states in bold letters that the patties are cooked on the same grill as and may come in contact with ingredient that contain soy and milk. Use your own discretion.
- Applewood Smoked Bacon. Does not contain the cooked on same grill declaration, so again, use your own discretion.
- Pepper Jack Cheese
- Asiago Cheese
- Garden salad, hold the Ranch dressing.
- Plain Baked Potato
- Apple Bites
- Sugar Cookie
Soy At Wendy’s – Not Soy Safe
- Premium buns contain soy oil, and the iffy modified food starch, they do not declare soy as an allergen, but merely state “BUNS ARE TOASTED IN A COMMON TOASTER WITH PRODUCTS THAT CONTAIN EGG, SOY, AND MILK). CONTAINS: WHEAT.”
- Multigrain Bun: Contains Soybean oil
- Sandwich bun: Contains soybean oil, mono- and di- glycerides that may also be ethoxylated
- Tortilla: Contains soybean oil, hydrogenated vegetable oil containing soybean oil, Mono – And Diglycerides And/Or Citric Acid, Potato Starch With Monoglycerides,
- Southwest Ranch Sauce: Contains Soy Oil, Xanthan Gum, Natural Flavor
- Spicy Chicken Breast: Contains Gum Arabic, and is cooked in Vegetable oil containing Soybean Oil.
- Homestyle Chicken Breast: Contains Modified Food Starch, Gum Arabic, and is cooked in vegetable oil that contains soy bean oil.
- Grilled Chicken Breast: Contains soy lecithin, carrageenan, Xanthan gum, Gum Arabic, and listed as containing soy.
- Chicken Nuggets: Are listed as being set and cooked in vegetable oil that contains soybean oil. The breading also contains Xanthan gum and citric acid.
- Chicken Tenders: Are listed as being set and cooked in vegetable oil that contains soybean oil. Iffy ingredient in the breading is chicken broth. The majority of commercial broths contain soy.
- Crispy Chicken Patty: Listed as being set and cooked in vegetable oil that contains soybean oil.
- American Cheese: Contains Soy Lecithin. Wendy’s declares the Soy allergen on their American cheese
- Mayonnaise: Contains soy oil, only allergen listed is Egg.
- Smokey Honey Mustard: Contains soybean oil, citric acid, Xanthan gum, Soy lecithin, and has a soy warning on it.
- Ranch Sauce: Contains soybean oil, Xanthan gum, citric acid
- Caesar Dressing: Contains soybean oil, Xanthan gum, natural flavors
- French Fries: Contains soybean oil and cooked in vegetable oil containing soybean oil.
- Limeade: Contains Gum Arabic, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, and natural flavors.
Soy At Wendy’s – Iffy for Soy Foods
- Ketchup lists natural flavors.
- Pickles list natural flavors
- Light Sour Cream: Xanthan gum
- Berry Cherry Fruit Tea contains natural flavor. NOTE: I did try this beverage in the small cup. I had no reaction to it. Typically when the only soy ingredient is an iffy natural flavor and that natural flavor contains soy, I have a reaction. I advise you to try this using your own discretion.
- Small Strawberry Watermelon Fruit Tea contains Citric Acid
- Honest® Tropical Green Tea contains natural flavors
- Strawberry Lemonade contains natural flavors, citric acid. This product also contains modified cornstarch. Truth be told, modified anything freaks me out a little…
- All-Natural Lemonade contains natural flavors.
What I typically order at Wendy’s when I have to go there
1/4 lb hamburger patty with onion slice on top of the lettuce and tomato, side salad without croutons, plain baked potato, and unsweetened iced tea. Bonus, this meal is also paleo compliant, unless you don’t allow yourself white potatoes or tomatoes.
Wendy’s is pretty thoughtful about their allergic customer needs in my experience. You have to speak up and let them know, don’t assume they have ESP. You can ask your Wendy’s if they can water clean the part of the grill they will cook your meat on, as well as the spatula. Luckily for me, the manager at the Wendy’s I go to does this for me each time. I appreciate the treatment I get from her and her crew and they are the main reason I go there when I need a quick meal despite being paleo and soy allergic.
Now that you know more about the soy at Wendy’s, what changes are you going to make to your choices when you visit the restaurant? Are you allergic to soy too? Tell me all in the comments below.