Is Subway Fast-Food In 2022? (You’ll Be Surprised…)

Subway is known for offering its customers ultimate customization when it comes to its food. With a range of sandwiches, salads, melts, and more on the menu, it’s easy to find something for everyone at Subway.

Fans of the franchise may wonder if Subway is classed as fast-food, why it is classed as fast-food, and whether it can be considered healthy. I’ve done the research, and here’s what I’ve found out about Subway!

Is Subway Fast-Food In 2022?

Subway is classed as fast-food as of 2022. The franchise is fast-food because all of Subway’s food is prepared before the customer arrives and doesn’t need cooking. With over 400,000 stores in operation, Subway is considered the largest fast-food franchise in the world. Subway is often known as a healthy alternative to traditional fast-food.

For more information on if Subway can be considered fast-food, including how it’s classified, if Subway is fast-food or fast-casual, and if Subway is as healthy as it claims, just keep reading!

Can Subway Be Considered Fast-Food?

Fast-food is a type of service that involves partially-prepared, limited options often sold through counter-service, the same model Subway uses.

Therefore, people classify Subway as a fast-food franchise.

For example, many menu options at Subway are pre-prepared or pre-cooked, like the vegetables, chicken, steak, and meatballs.

According to the “History” section of its website, Subway classifies itself as the world’s largest restaurant chain, likely due to fast-food’s unpopular stigma.

Is Subway A Healthy Fast-Food Option?

Subway has often promoted itself as a healthy alternative to many fast-food restaurants due to its options like whole wheat bread, fat-free sauces, and various vegetable toppings.

With that, Subway began to build its reputation as a healthy fast-food option in 1997 through a marketing campaign that advertised its seven low-fat sandwiches.

Through a critical understanding of its American audiences’ priorities, Subway built and expanded its brand while growing its reputation as a healthy fast food franchise.

Also, there have been reports that Subway offers a range of healthy meal options, with its food low in sugar and containing fiber and protein.

Is Subway Fast-Food Or Fast-Casual?

While some people have defined Subway as fast-casual due to its method of preparing the food before its customers, several people still classify it as fast-food.

For example, FastCasual has defined Subway as fast-food due to its low prices, around the $4 to $5 range, and informal décor.

Also, many menu items at Subway are pre-cooked and pre-prepared.  

Is Subway The Biggest Fast-Food Chain?

Is Subway The Biggest Fast-Food Chain?

Yes, Subway is the largest restaurant chain globally due to its business method of franchising its restaurants, which allows for fast expansion.

Initially, Subway started as an individual sandwich shop in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in 1965 and didn’t become a franchise until 1974 with the opening of the second store in Wallingford, Connecticut.

In 1974, over 16 Subway stores were in operation within Connecticut before expanding to other locations, including Bahrain in 1984, the United Kingdom in 1996, and more.

In 1990, Subway had opened its 5,000th restaurant, and now it has over 400,000 individual stores in operation, making Subway the biggest fast-food chain.

Due to its business model, which allows for rapid expansion, Subway has overtaken rival McDonald’s for the number of stores in operation.

Is Subway The Healthiest Fast-Food?

Subway has often been listed on some of the healthiest fast-food options, including Healthline, which named Subway one of the ten healthiest fast-food restaurants.

Moreover, Healthline has stated many Subway items are low in calories and fat and high in protein, earning it a Heart-Check Certification status from the American Heart Association Trust.

Therefore, Subway is often considered one of the healthiest fast-food places due to the customers’ ability to easily make healthy choices with their food.

Is Subway Better Fast-Food?

Subway uses its reputation as a healthy fast-food alternative as a competitive advantage to expand its business.

McDonald’s, which was previously the largest fast-food chain in the world, has been overtaken by Subway by the number of franchises the sandwich shop has opened.

The rise of attention regarding obesity, animal rights, and other ethical issues has created a bad reputation for fast-food restaurants such as McDonald’s.

On the other hand, Subway has avoided a negative image due to its healthy reputation, allowing continued growth.

Now that you know about Subway, you can also see our related posts on whether or not Subway sells coffee, if Subway’s veggie patty has egg, and if you can buy Subway bread.


Subway is considered fast-food due to how employees prepare its menu items.

For example, Subway employees pre-prepares the vegetables and pre-cooks the meat, which has led to its classification as fast-food.

With over 400,000 restaurants in operation, Subway is the largest fast-food franchise in the world.

Because Subway uses franchising as its business model, it has led to rapid growth since its first expansion in 1974.

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