Order This, Not That: Wendy's

by in Dining Out, Healthy Tips, July 21, 2009

Are all fast-food burger joints created equal, or does Wendy’s live up to its claim to be “waaayy better than fast food”? (Sorry, but a bacon cheeseburger still isn’t a good choice.)

ORDER: Simple and Fresh
Basic salads, such as the Mandarin Chicken or Chicken Caesar, have between 200 to 300 calories even with their special dressings. Opt out of extra toppings like crispy noodles and garlic croutons to save 70 calories and 2.5 grams of fat. Even better, pass on regular dressings, and go for the light or fat-free options instead.

You don’t see a lot of baked potatoes on fast food menus, but they’ve been a staple at Wendy’s for years. With 270 calories (without toppings), a potato and a side salad make for a well-rounded meal. Chili is also a unique offering but stick to the small size. The large cup of chili has only 280 calories but 1240 milligrams of sodium –- that’s more than half of the daily recommendation of salt.

If you’re in the mood for a sandwich or burger, the Jr. Hamburger is the best option with 230 calories, 8 grams of fat and just under 500 milligrams of sodium. Or make a meal out of the Grilled Chicken Go Wrap, which has 250 calories, 10 grams of fat and 730 milligrams of sodium.

NOT: Everything Burgers, Boneless Wings and Frozen Treats
The Triple Burger with Everything and Cheese tips the scale at 970 calories, 60 grams of fat (including 27 grams of saturated and 3.5 grams of trans fat) and 2,010 milligrams of sodium. The Baconator burger (that name just bothers me) isn’t much better with 870 calories and 51 grams of fat. Of course, it’s easy to figure out that you shouldn’t order a triple cheeseburger. The Chicken Club Sandwich might seem like a light choice, but stay away — it still packs 550 calories and 26 grams of fat.

I’ve seen a lot of commercials lately for their new boneless wings. Whether you’re eying the Bold Buffalo (520 calories), Honey BBQ (580 calories) or Sweet & Spicy Asian (550 calories), none of them are a healthy choice. Each serving has 18 grams of fat and somewhere between 1990 and 2630 milligrams of sodium –- not to mention a laundry list of preservatives, according to the ingredient info.

And what about Wendy’s signature Frosty dessert? A small Chocolate Frosty has 320 calories and 8 grams of fat, which is enough for a meal. I remember when there was just one kind of Frosty -– now there are all kinds of choices, many with added cookies and candy that only jack up the calorie and fat totals. You’re better off enjoying a small serving of chocolate ice cream from your home freezer.

We have some kudos for Wendy’s: They’re conscientious about noting potential food allergens and providing a list of ingredients for all their menu items. You can look all that up at their site.

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Comments (11)

  1. Rene says:

    Wendy's also has a Jr. sized Frosty that only has 150 calories, 4 grams of fat and 2.5 grams of saturated fat.

  2. Sylvia says:

    Wow. My family goes to Wendy's a lot during the school year. This was really helpful. :)

  3. mary says:

    im a manager at wendys and trying to eat healthy,this is a really help ,i always get my small chilli or a ceasar side salad ,and cant forget my baked potatoe.

  4. @3TAB says:


  5. Health Watch says:

    This article IS INCORRECT concerning the salads.

    The healthiest salad Wendy's offers is 350 calories minus the almonds and noodles which together is another 200 calories. If you eat the entire salad the total is 550 calories.

  6. Misha says:

    A grilled chicken sandwich, plain, and jr frosty is 8 grams of fat and very satisfying! Hot, juicy, cool, and sweet.

  7. @MomDarLena says:

    maybe I'm in trouble, usually order the bacon cheeseburger jr. for my Mom and I, and sometimes split a value fry. she likes diet coke and I don't though I rarely have soda so sometimes I have a value coke as well.

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  9. IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offencesFor abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

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