Abstract Ultrasonic synthesis was investigated as a synthesis method of non-platinum catalysts for alkaline direct methanol fuel cells (alkaline DMFCs) such as 20% mass Pd/C, Au/C, and PdAu/C. Among four kinds of solvents, ethylene glycol was demonstrated to be the optimum solvent for the synthesis of those catalysts. When ethylene glycol was used, the synthesized metal nanoparticles were highly dispersed on carbon particles. The synthesized Pd/C and PdAu/C showed the high oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity in alkaline condition (0.5 M NaOH aqueous solution), which was comparable to conventional Pt/C. Moreover, they showed lower methanol oxidation reaction (MOR) activity. Membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs) containing the synthesized Pd/C cathode catalysts and alkaline ion exchange membranes were fabricated and evaluated by single cell tests. They showed high performance that was comparable to MEAs with Pt/C cathode. In addition, it was found that the synthesized Pd/C was relatively tolerant to methanol crossover.