Low-Calorie Fast-Food Menu Items

by in Dining Out, February 12, 2013

chicken sandwich
You’re stuck on the road, or didn’t have a chance to eat and end up in some fast-food joint that’s all too conveniently placed in your neighborhood. What should you choose? Your best line of defense is to be prepared. I checked out popular fast-food restaurants and found options that can fit any calorie requirements; whether you’re looking for a quick snack or a sensibly-sized meal, I’ve got you covered.

Meals
A reasonable lunch or dinner has about 400 or 500 calories, depending on your overall calorie needs.

500 Calories

400 Calories

  • Burger King’s Premium Grilled Chicken Sandwich: Hold the mayo and use 1 packet of ketchup instead. Pair with a bottle of water. CALORIES: 410
  • Subway’s 6″ Turkey Breast Sandwich: Pair with a small bag of baked chips and water. CALORIES: 400
  • Wendy’s Jr Hamburger: Pair with a Caesar Side Salad topped with 1 packet of Lemon Garlic Caesar Dressing and a bottle of water. CALORIES: 400
  • Chick-Fil-A’s Chargrilled Chicken Sandwich (pictured above): Enjoy the sandwich with 1 package of Honey Roasted BBQ Sauce along with a large fruit cup. CALORIES: 400

Snacks
Snacks should provide some nutrition value and help stave off hunger between meals. If you find that you’re going more than 5 hours between meals, eating a snack can help you avoid being ravenous at your next meal.

200 Calories

  • McDonald’s Fruit & Walnuts: This easy to-go snack includes apple slices, red grapes, candied walnuts and low-fat vanilla yogurt. CALORIES: 210
  • Au Bon Pain Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal (small): The 8-ounce serving of filling oatmeal is a perfect snack that will help curb hunger until your next meal. CALORIES: 190
  • Taco Bell’s Crunchy Taco Supreme: One taco filled with beef, reduced-fat sour cream, shredded lettuce, cheddar cheese and diced tomatoes makes a filling snack. CALORIES: 200

100 Calories

  • Starbuck’s Short Hot Chocolate (8 fluid ounce): Order this warming winter drink with nonfat milk and sans the whipped cream. CALORIES: 130
  • Au Bon Pain’s Carrot Ginger Soup (small): The 8-fluid-ounce portion is perfect for a quick snack. CALORIES: 90
  • Dunkin Donut’s Caramel Mocha Coffee (small): Perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up. CALORIES: 110

TELL US: What’s your go-to lower calorie fast food fare?

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Comments (33)

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  3. Sammi Brown says:

    I really like when you also mention sodium content when discussing eating out. I have to watch my sodium and found that restaurant food in a mine field of sodium. Thanks for your help.

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