Pepperoni Pizza - ©

What Makes Canadians Different From Americans?

There have been many attempts determine the differences between Canucks and Yanks. The problem has been that, in so many ways, we’re so alike. Conventional minds blame the fact that we share so much media content…

Poutine - © tasteatlas.comPoutine: So quintessentially Canadian, yet almost universally claimed
as a national specialty by the Yanks. How odd it doesn’t
show up in the American Top 10 List!

That’s true, I guess. But I always tend to look at what people are eating to compare and contrast cultural similarities and differences.

Which is why I jump right on the annual stories, that usually appear around this time, claiming to nail down what folks are ordering most.

What I did

Thanks to the internet and the prolific, almost ubiquitous presence of food ordering and delivery operations, it’s easier than ever to get the info that answers our question of the day!

This year, I happen to have data from DoorDash and GrubHub enumerating the top 10 foods ordered in Canada and the U.S. (respectively) during 2022.

Some surprises

Here they are: the Top 10 foods ordered by Canadians in 2022 (according to DoorDash)…

  1. Burgers & Fries
  2. Fried Chicken
  3. Poutine
  4. Sushi Rolls
  5. Chicken Wings
  6. Burritos
  7. Chicken Rice Bowl
  8. Shawarma Wraps
  9. Curry
  10. Pad Thai

And here are the Top 10 foods ordered by Americans (according to GrubHub)…

  1. Burrito (bowl or regular)
  2. Cheeseburger
  3. Cheese Pizza
  4. Pad Thai
  5. Chicken Quesadilla
  6. California Roll
  7. Fried Chicken Sandwich
  8. Caesar Salad
  9. Chicken Tikka Masala
  10. Boneless Wings


Some notable similarities:

There are lots of Chicken dishes showing up on both lists. Both specifically contain Fried Chicken.

Chicken Wings sit at position on number 5 on the Canadian list and number 10 on the American list.

Sushi also shows up on both lists, though not at the same position. (California Rolls at number 6 on the U.S. list and generic ‘Sushi’ at number 5 on the Canadian list.)

Asian foods also show up on both lists. Pad Thai is a particular fave, though at number 4 on the U.S. list and number 10 on the Canadian one.

Curries are also present on both lists: Chicken Tikka Masala at position 9 on the American list, and generic ‘Curry‘ at the same spot on the Canadian list.

Finally… Burritos top the American list, but only show at position 6 on the Canadian list.


So many similarities, but such a range of priorities as to amaze a casual observer. I am still wondering why Canadians and Americans love the same dishes so much in general, but apply such different order of preference to them.

Notable differences between the two lists:

NO Pizza in the Top 10 on the Canadian list – although that food is perennially rated the top most loved food around the world (see photo, top of page). And I mean everywhere.

NO Shawarma on the American List.

NO Caesar Salad on the Canadian Top 10 list, though it’s the drop-dead most ordered salad around the world.

And… NO Poutine on the American list, in spite of the fact that this Canadian delicacy is perennially the dish most culturally mis-appropriated by Americans as reported in their own food media.


Interesting, isn’t it, which foods are singled out by their absence on one of the two lists, compared to which are notable by their mutual presence?

-I think the most interesting point a comparison of the two lists makes is that, although Canadians and Americans are, in general – as predicted by the ‘Big Brains’ – how different they are at the ‘detail’ level.

Long live the subtle little differences! Vive la poutine!

~ Maggie J.