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Chipotle has really had some rapid growth over the last few years. We see new Chipotle locatins popping up just about everywhere, and they are almost always very busy!
Chipotle has good quality food and essentially let’s you create your own burritos, tacos, bowls and salads from their variety of ingredients.
There are several tools available in order to make correct nutritional decisions at Chipotle. First off is the http://www.chipotle.com website:
Another great tool can be found on many Chipotle fan web sites including ChipotleLovers.com. They offer you a tool that allows you to select your main item (burrito, taco, salad, bowl) and your supplemntary ingredients to get a full nutritional analysis of your selections. This is a great tool to use to help you make smarter Chipotle nutritional decisions.
There is nothing quite like the smell that comes from a Cinnabon location, even if you are a few hundred feet away. The smell draws you in and makes wanting a Cinnabon very enticing.
Cinnabon provides complete nutrition information on all the product via a PDF file at http://cinnabon.com/media/15381/cinnabon_nutrition.pdf.
It’s hard to resist Cinnabon, the smell of butter, yeast, cinnamon and sugar is sure the get your cravings going. To save calories, fat grams and sugar intake it is obviously best to select smaller Cinnabon items. A Minibon may cure your cinnamon craving, and save you 530 calories! For those who really have willpower maybe just inhaling the great Cinnabon scent and keep walking would be the best policy! I know it’s hard!
Here are the highlights for the best-selling items:
Product Calories Fat (g) Sugar (g)
Classic Cinnabon 880 36 59
Minibon 350 14 24
Pecanbon 1080 50 76
Cinnabon Bites (4) 350 15 24
Auntie Anne’s Pretzels are pretty darn good, and available at most malls and airports around the country. While not a substitute for a full meal an Auntie Anne pretzel is quite a snack.
Everyone is conscious about their salt and sodium intake, so out of the gate you may be wondering about pretzels. At Auntie Anne’s they will be happy to provide you with salt-free pretzels at your request. Also upon request they will not put additional butter on your pretzel after the baking process is complete. Making special requests makes sure you watch your nutritional intake, and also makes sure you get a hot, just out of the oven pretzel.
Auntie Anne’s original pretzel has 340 calories, 3 grams of fat and 1060 mg of salt. Get your pretzel without salt or butter and you have a tasty snack with 310 calories, 1 gram of fat and 400 mg of salt.
It is not often that you can walk thru the food court at the mall or in the airport and NOT be offered a sample of Asain Chao’s Bourbon Chicken. An offering that is hard to resist!
Many of Asian Chao’s items contain a combination of vegetables, protein and sauce. Therefore, items like the Broccoli Chicken have pretty low calorie counts per serving.
Asian Chao does not currently have calorie and nutrition information available on their website. It seems that this will change in the not too distant future as they seem to be working with FoodCALC who develops nutrition programs for the food service industry.
In the meantime, here is the basic calorie and nutrition info for the items on the Asian Chao menu, including the famous Bourbon Chicken!
Asian Chao Calorie & Nutrition Info
|Asian Chao Menu Items||Serving Size (oz)||Calories||Total Fat (g)||Sodium (mg)|
|Tofu with Vegetables||5||150||7||1330|
|Black Pepper Chicken||5||130||6||970|
|Asian Chao Bourbon Chicken||5||240||6||1050|
|Chicken in Black Bean Sauce||5||140||6||910|
|Chicken with Mushroom||5||130||5||1580|
|Kung Pao Chicken||5||130||4.5||1820|
|Beef in Black Bean Sauce||5||140||6||870|
|Beef with Broccoli||5||170||7||1990|
|Black Pepper Beef||5||170||10||990|
|Rice & Noodles|
|Lo Mein Noodles||8||350||17||830|
|Crab Rangoon||4 Pieces||370||23||540|
|Fried Plantains||4 Pieces||280||6||5|
|Vegetable Egg Roll||1 Piece||170||10||380|
|Pork and vegetable Egg Roll||1 Piece||200||12||450|
Denny’s has launched a new item on their $2-4-6-8 Value Menu. It’s the Fried Cheese Melt. This concoction is a grilled cheese sandwich with a twist. Four fried mozzarella sticks and melted American cheese grilled between two slices of sourdough bread. Served with wavy-cut French fries and a side of marinara sauce.
Recommended limits for a 2,000 calorie daily diet are 20 grams of saturated fat (this sandwich alone has 17 grams), and 2,300 milligrams of sodium (the sandwich alone has 2,670).
The calorie count is also quite high. For the sandwich, fries andthe marinara sauce there are 1260 calories.
Denny's Grilled Cheese Melt
|Item||Calories||Fat (g)||Sodium (mg)|
|Fried Cheese Melt||790||38||2670|
|Fried Cheese Melt w/ Fries||1220||61||2770|
|Fried Cheese Melt w/ Marinara Sauce||830||40||2920|
|Fried Cheese Melt w/ Marinara & Fries||1260||63||3010|
The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine has released the results of their study concerning fast food kids meals with high fat content and the relationship with childhoold obesity.
They have identified the five most unhealthful fast food kids meals.
The indicate that the worst is the McDonald’s Might Kids Meal which contains a double cheeseburger, french fries and chocolate milk. With 840 calories, 37 grams of fat and about as much sodium as a child should consume in an entire day. Out of all the meals analyzed this contained the most calories, fat and saturated fat.
The 2nd worst is Wendy’s Kids Meal of a chicken sandwich, french fries and a chocolate frosty.
The 3rd worst is KFC Kids Meal with popcorn chicken, potato wedges, string cheese and soda.
The 4th worst is the A&W Kids Meal with a cheeseburger, french fries and soda.
Finally, the 5th worst is Burger King’s BK Kids breakfast muffin sandwich meal. This meal has more sodium than children should have at breakfast and the highest cholestrol level of any item analyzed.
PCRM studied high fat content, high caloric intake, sodium levels, cholestrol and red & processed meats… all items that are believed to contribute to chilhood obesity.
It should be noted that most fast food restaurants do offer options with their kids meals. For example, McDonalds will substitute “apple dippers” for french fries and regular milk, juice or soda for chocolate milk. These substitutions would change the nutritional makeup significantly.
Five Most Unhealthful Fast Food Kids meals
|Item||Calories||Fat (g)||Saturated Fat (g)||Sodium (mg)||Cholestrol (mg)|
|McDonalds Mighty Kids Meal: Double Cheeseburger, French fries, and chocolate milk||840||37||14||1460||85|
|Wendys Kids Meal: Chicken Sandwich, French fries, and chocolate Frosty||770||34||9.5||1390||60|
|KFC Kids Meal: Popcorn chicken, potato wedges, string cheese, and soda||800||34.5||7.5||1800||65|
|A&W Kids Meal: Cheeseburger, French fries, and soda||780||29||9||1360||70|
|Burger King BK Kids: Breakfast muffin sandwich meal||410||11.5||4||600||95|
McDonald’s has rolled out their Angus Snack Wraps to locations across the country. They are featuring three versions:
Deluxe Angus Snack Wrap with angus beef, tomato slices, american cheese, pickles, lettuce and onions wrapped in a flour tortilla.
Mushroom & Swiss Angus Snack Wrap with angus beef, sliced mushrooms, swiss cheese in a flour tortilla.
Bacon & Cheese Angus Snack Wrap with angus beef, bacon slices, american cheese, pickles, and red onions in a flour tortilla.
McDonald\'s Angus Snack Wraps
|Deluxe Angus Snack Wrap||410||25|
|Mushroom/Swiss Angus Snack Wrap||430||26|
|Bacon/Cheese Angus Snack Wrap||390||21|
Burger King’s BK WHOPPER Bar in New York City is producing their own supersized specialty hamburger, pizza, sandwich. Called the NY Pizza Burger it contains four FOUR Whopper hamburger patties, pepperoni, mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce, all on a 9-and-a-half inch bun.
Fortunately the WHOPPER Bar will cut the sandwich/burger/pizza into six convenient slices or else you may be tempted to eat the entire “pizza” and intake 2520 calories! That’s a “whopping” number of calories — Oh, and low fat it is not, the NY Pizza Burger contains 144 grams of fat.
If you would like to try the NY Pizza Burger plan on a trip to New York City as it will only be available at the BK WHOPPER Bar in New York City. You can book your airline tickets early and get the best price since the NY Pizza Burger will not go on sale until early September.
Carl’s Jr. has launched a new hamburger product called the Philly Cheesesteak Burger. It is described as “juicy steak, with sautéed green bell peppers and onions, and melted American and Swiss cheeses, all piled on top of a charbroiled beef patty and served between a seeded bun.” Who doesn’t love cheesesteak? Who doesn’t love hamburgers?
The combination of these two items creates quite a nutritional quandry. The Philly Cheesesteak Burger weighs in at 750 calories with 45 grams of fat.
So you are in a rush, but you feel you want to eat healthy. Many of us assume that a salad is the way to go. Very often that is a bad choice, as fast food salads tend to rather caloric, high in fat, and very salty. Many people make their salads even worse nutritionally by adding a double serving of mayonnaise based salad dressing.
To help make you make the best choices let’s take a look at McDonald’s and Wendy’s salads, and for comparison sake we will also include Panera.
McDonald’s offers most of their salads with a choice of either grilled or crispy (fried) chicken. It is no suprise that the versions with grilled chicken are lower in calories and quite a bit lower in fat.
McDonald's Salads & Alternatives
|Item||Calories||Total Fat (g)|
|Southwest Salad with Grilled Chicken (Southwest Dressing)||420||15|
|Southwest Salad with Crispy Chicken (Southwest Dressing)||530||26|
|Bacon Ranch Salad with Grilled Chicken (Ranch Dressing)||430||24|
|Bacon Ranch Salad with Crispy Chicken (Ranch Dressing)||540||35|
|Caesar Salad with Grilled Chicken (Caesar Dressing)||430||24|
|Caesar Salad with Crispy Chicken (Caesar Dressing)||520||35|
|Quarter Pound Burger with Cheese||410||19|
|Grilled Chicken Classic (no mayo)||370||4.5|
Wendy’s offers some great tasting and attractive salads. However, their calorie and nutritional price tag is pretty high. Most of the salads are at least 500 calories, with up to 49 grams of fat.
Wendy's Salads & Alternatives
|Item||Calories||Total Fat (g)|
|BLT Cobb Salad||670||47|
|Apple Pecan Chicken Salad||580||27|
|Spicy Chicken Caesar Salad||740||49|
|Single Hamburger with Cheese||490||23|
|Ultimate Chicken Grill||370||7|
Panera Bread also offers some great hand-tossed salads. Once again the calorie and the fat grams are rather high, especially when you think you are “dieting” by getting a salad.
Panera Salads & Alternatives
|Item||Calories||Total Fat (g)|
|Chopped Chicken Cobb Salad||500||36|
|BBQ Chopped Chicken Salad||500||22|
|Asian Sesame Chicken Salad||400||20|
|Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad||510||29|
|Fuji Apple Chicken Salad||520||31|
|Strawberry Poppyseed & Chicken Salad||280||8|
|Pick 2 Chopped Chicken Salad + Chicken Noodle Soup||360||20|
As alway, there are choices at fast food restaurants… sometimes those choice are not so obvious.