You are sitting in a drive thru, you are in a hurry and starving. In the back of your mind, you hear a voice saying “Eating fast food can never be healthy!” What do you do? Do you say, “whatever, I don’t have time to eat healthy!” and pick the greasiest and most delicious thing on the menu? Or do you sit there looking at the menu, and just decide to not eat anything because “nothing is going to be healthy” and you don’t want the “empty calories”?
Save this blog! The next time you are in this situation, and girl...it will happen at some point. Remember, don’t over think your decision. Focus on a solid protein choice and a serving of fruit. Yes, there are other things to look at, but today I am going to cover 4 different drive thru places and give you an example of what I would pick. Now, DO NOT think these are the only choices you can pick for a healthy breakfast. Because there are actually several different good food choices to pick from.
First stop, Panera Bread!
One of my favorite break foods is the Bacon, Scrambled Egg & Tomato Wrap. This easy to go food is filled with bacon, scrambled egg, grape tomatoes, emerald greens, Vermont white cheddar, mustard horseradish sauce, salt, and pepper in a Whole Grain Wrap. Wow, that is a mouth full of deliciousness!
Nutritional Information : 450 Calories, 24 g Fat, 10 g Sat Fat, 32 g Carbohydrates, 2 g Dietary Fiber, 27 g Protein.
Pair your wrap with a Summer Fruit Cup. This match sets you up for a successful day to fuel your body and brain! The mix of fresh pineapple, cantaloupe, strawberries and blueberries.
Nutritional Information : 60 Calories, 0 g Fat, 15 g Carbohydrates, 1 g Protein.
Pro tip, use the Panera app. You can order ahead and not have to wait in the long breakfast line!
Next stop breakfast idea, Starbucks!
I love Starbucks for so many reasons. One thing to keep on your radar is their wraps! Definitely check out the Spinach, Feta & Egg White Wrap. They bring together cage-free egg whites, spinach, feta cheese and tomatoes inside a whole-wheat wrap, then toast it to perfection. Yes, I did decide to feature another wrap, but this is because they are less messier, especially if you have to eat in the car. There are several other great breakfast choices to pick from. You know what nutritional facts to look for!
Nutritional Information : 290 Calories, 8 g Fat, 3.5 g Sat Fat, 34 g Carbohydrates, 3 g Fiber, 20 g Protein
Let’s go ahead and pair this amazing wrap with the Seasonal Fruit Blend! Starbucks has a great medley of seasonal fruit. Full of color, nutrients, ripeness and wholesome sweet goodness. I highly encourage you to try it.
Nutritional Information : 90 Calories, 0 g Fat, 24 g Sat Fat, 4 g Carbohydrates, 1 g Protein
Onward to drive thru #3, Chick Fil A!
Let’s talk about breakfast sandwiches! When I pull up to Chick Fil A, my brain instantly does not know what to pick! Do you feel like this too? One breakfast option that will fill you up, and tastes great is the Egg White Grill. It is a breakfast portion of grilled chicken with a hint of citrus, served on a toasted multigrain English muffin with egg whites and American cheese. I like to add their jalapeno salsa on it, but that is just me.
Nutritional Information : 290 Calories, 8 g Fat, 8 g Sat Fat, 30 g Carbohydrates, 26 g Protein
Once again, pair that sandwich with a medium sized Fruit Cup! It is a nutritious fruit mix made with chopped pieces of red and green apples, mandarin orange segments, fresh strawberry slices, and blueberries, served chilled and prepared fresh daily. Are you starting to notice a trend yet?
Nutritional Information : 60 Calories, 0 g Fat, 8 g Sat Fat, 15 g Carbohydrates, 1 g Protein
Final drive thru destination, McDonalds!
Are you surprised? McDonalds is a popular and budget friendly drive thru. It seems to get a bad reputation when it comes to nutrition. Next time you coast thru McD’s, check out their Sausage McMuffin with Egg. Yes, I am serious. This breakfast sandwich is a savory hot sausage, a slice of melty American cheese, and a delicious freshly cracked egg all on a freshly toasted English muffin.
Nutritional Information : 480 Calories, 31 g Fat, 12 g Sat Fat, 30 g Carbohydrates, 20 g Protein
The key is to pair it with….wait for it….Apple Slices. Dare I even suggest, but you could even eat two of the crisp apple slices.
Nutritional Information : 15 Calories, 0 g Fat, 4 g Sat Fat, 4 g Carbohydrates, 0 g Protein
I know, you are thinking to yourself. I still don’t see how these options are healthy, or this is not something I’d like. As I mentioned before, these are just examples of what I suggest.
Here are some fast food tips I recommend :
Look at the menu online (nutritional information is typically posted)
Request for adjustments made to your order. This could include a side order of egg or chicken breast, or even ask for no honey to be put on your CFA chicken minis.
Pay attention to the protein, aim for 20-30 grams.
Add that fruit option for a side. This gives you something fresh with your “fast food” and starts your day off with at least 1 serving of fruit for the day!
I’ve said this many times, and I will say it again. I do not want my clients to feel as though I am going to tell them what to eat. I do not write meal plans. I offer suggestions, based off of foods they enjoy. If you would like a little support from a Registered Dietitian, fill out my “Client Application”. Let’s get to know one another in a “get to know you call” and see what we can get started for you today.
I don’t want you to think "Eating Fast Food can never be healthy!" Because that is not true. You can still eat out, eat premade foods, and lose or maintain weight.
Let’s just go ahead and call it, Breakfast Fast Foods Debunked!