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Healthier Options to Pick at Famous Fast-Food Chains

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Fast food is all around us. Quick, tasty meals are just a drive-thru away, and grabbing something on the go can be very tempting. However, fast food isn't always the healthiest option. Many fast-food meals are high in calories, fat, and salt, and can contribute to lasting health problems

But we all know that sometimes fast food is the easiest option, and it’s better to eat something than nothing, so many of us opt for meals on the go because of our busy lives. 

In this blog post, we'll share some tips on how to pick healthier options at popular fast-food chains, so you can still eat something more nutritious when you’re tight on time or budget.

Taco Bell

Taco Bell offers a variety of menu items, some of which can be healthier than others. Consider choosing a Fresco-style menu item, which replaces cheese and sour cream with pico de gallo. The grilled chicken soft tacos are a good option, and you can skip the guacamole and the cheese. If you're in the mood for a burrito, go for the Fresco-style grilled steak burrito. Remember to watch your portion sizes and avoid the nachos and the cheese sauce.


McDonald's has salads on the menu, but some can be misleadingly high in calories and fat. The southwest grilled chicken salad is healthier, but avoid adding the creamy ranch dressing. You could also try the artisan grilled chicken sandwich and skip the sauce. Hungry for a burger? Instead of the Big Mac or Quarter Pounder, opt for a Double Cheeseburger. In general, stick to grilled options instead of fried, and avoid the larger portions. 

Burger King

BK is known for its Whopper, but make a healthier choice at Burger King while still satisfying that craving and try the Whopper Jr. or the grilled chicken sandwich without the mayo. The veggie burger is also a good option, and you can skip the cheese and the mayo. If you're in the mood for fries, choose the smallest size, and pair your meal with a side salad and water instead of a soda.


Fried chicken is a staple at KFC, but there are other options available. The grilled chicken is a healthier alternative, and you can pair it with a side salad instead of fries. Avoid the biscuits and the cream-based sides, such as the mashed potatoes and gravy.


Wendy's has a great selection of salads, such as the apple pecan chicken salad or the grilled chicken salad. You can also opt for a grilled chicken sandwich or the chili and skip the cheese or sour cream. Avoid the larger portions, such as the Baconator or the fries.


Starbucks has more than just coffee. You can grab a sandwich or a salad, but be aware that some options can be high in calories and fat. The turkey and pesto sandwich or the chicken and quinoa protein bowl are both healthier options. Skip the pastries and the syrups in your coffee, as these add tons of sugar, unnecessary fats, and carbs to your day.


Chipotle allows you to customize your meal, which is great for making a healthier choice. Choose brown rice instead of white, and add beans and veggies to your bowl or burrito. Skip the cheese and sour cream, and be careful with the portion of the guacamole. Chicken or steak are the leanest protein options.

Dunkin Donuts

Donuts are not the healthiest breakfast choice, but there are other options at Dunkin Donuts. Try the egg and cheese wake-up wrap or the oatmeal with fruit. Skip the sugary drinks, such as the mocha latte, and opt for a black coffee or an unsweetened iced tea.

Panera Bread

Panera Bread has a great selection of salads, soups, and sandwiches. The Mediterranean veggie sandwich or the turkey chili are both good options. You can also customize your salad or sandwich to make it healthier. Avoid pastries and sugary drinks.


Fast food isn't the best option for our health, but there are ways to make healthier choices when we're on the go. By choosing grilled options, skipping the cheese and mayo, and watching our portion sizes, we can still enjoy a quick meal without ruining our diet. 

Your diet is your call, but if you are looking to eat a bit on the healthier side, know that there are options available to you. Treat fast food as a once-in-a-while treat rather than an everyday staple. With careful consideration, you can still indulge a craving without regret.