Author, Lisa Spriet, RD
Summer is here and for many of you, summer time activities are picking up! Summer is short in Canada, and after a long winter in lockdown, many of our clients are filling their weekends and weeknights with biking, golf, road trips, and outdoor fun, which we love!
Despite our best efforts at planning and prepping, our busy schedules can sometimes lead us to the drive-thru window… But wait, does that mean that you have to give up on your healthy eating goals for the day? We say no!
With the goal of weight loss, or weight maintenance, keeping calories, fat and sugar in check at the drive thru window can be a tough task. So, we are here to help! Whether breakfast, lunch or dinner, choose from the options below to keep your healthy eating on track.
- At NutriProCan, we do not recommend that clients indulge frequently or in large amounts of prepared or processed foods.
- Additionally, we support our clients in getting into the habit of making their own ‘fast-food’ at home through meal plans, prepping and recipes!
- Plus, we do not support any one Fast Food Chain:).
Top Fast-Food Items
McDonald’s: Egg McMuffin With Cheese – Breakfast
This lower-calorie, protein-packed sandwich is one of the healthier options at McDonald’s. If you are in a hurry, instead of skipping breakfast, this may be a convenient alternative to fuel your morning. Be sure to skip the ham and sausage (high in sodium and saturated fat) and consider adding a plain green tea on the side for an extra boost.
Ingredients: English muffin, large egg, cheddar cheese
- Calories: 270 cal
- Fat: 11 g
- Protein: 13 g
- Carbs: 28 g
Tim Hortons: Chipotle Cheddar Grilled Chicken Wrap With No Dressing (Add Mustard For 0 Calories) And a Harvest Vegetable Soup (Regular Size) – Lunch or Dinner
The Cheddar Grilled Chicken Wrap provides a great source of protein, without going overboard on calories. Choosing a wrap instead of a bun helps to keep calories in check as well! To round out your meal, pair it with vegetable soup, which has little fat and is loaded with veggies.
Ingredients Wrap: grilled chicken strips, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, tortilla
Ingredients Soup: carrots, celery, iced tomatoes, corn, beans, zucchini
- Calories: 375 cal
- Fat: 6.4 g
- Protein 23g
- Carbs: 54g
Wendy’s: Apple Pecan Grilled Chicken Salad, No Dressing (Full Size) – Lunch or Dinner
A Wendy’s classic for good reason! The crisp apples and roasted pecans give a crunch to the fresh lettuce blend. Consider skipping the blue cheese to reduce the saturated fat by a whole 8 grams. Also, do not be fooled by the vinaigrette dressing, which is typically viewed as a healthy dressing. It is packed with sodium and sugar (9 grams per packet!), so either skip it or add a small amount.
Ingredients: lettuce blend, red and green apples, dried cranberries, pecans, blue cheese, grilled chicken breast
- Calories: 460 cal
- Fat: 23g
- Protein: 39g
- Carbs: 26g
Freshii: Umamii Salad With Tofu & Lemon Juice (Full Size) – Lunch or Dinner
The name says it all! This dish is undoubtedly umami, which means deliciousness in Japanese. Its main ingredient is the superfood of kale, which contains vitamin A, antioxidants, and fibre. The hemp seeds provide omega-3 essential fatty acids and add a nice crunch. Choose lemon juice instead of the ginger miso dressing to keep calories, fat, sodium, and sugar in check.
Ingredients: kale, tofu, brown rice, avocado, edamame, mushrooms, cucumber, cabbage, carrots, hemp seeds, lemon juice
- Calories: 480 cal
- Fat: 21g
- Protein: 22g
- Carbs: 60g
Starbucks: Grande Soy Caffe Latte With Oatmeal -Breakfast
A grande unsweetened soy caffe latte to jump-start my morning, yes please! Pair this with hearty oatmeal to start your day off right! The Starbucks oatmeal is made of whole grain steel-cut and rolled oats. These are some of the healthiest grains, filled with fibre and antioxidants. Skip the brown sugar, and instead sweeten your oatmeal with dried fruit, blueberries, and a nut medley. Try topping your latte with cinnamon instead of sweetening it with sugar.
Ingredients oatmeal: steel-cut and rolled oats, dried fruit, blueberries, nut medley
Ingredients caffe latte: soy milk, espresso
- Calories: 330 cal
- Fat: 7.5g
- Carbs: 51g
Pita Pit: Whole Wheat Grilled Chicken Pita With Hummus, Tzatziki And Veggies ( Regular Size) – Lunch or Dinner
A tip for a healthier option at Pita Pit is to specify a whole grain pita to increase your vitamin B, fibre, and protein intake. Don’t forget to fill your pita with as many veggies as you like; after all, they are unlimited! Alfalfa sprouts are a unique option that is nutrient-dense and high in vitamin K.
Ingredients: whole wheat pita, lean chicken, cucumber, spinach, green peppers, onion, mushroom, alfalfa sprouts, hummus, tzatziki
- Calories: 456 cal
- Fat: 13g
- Protein: 32g
- Carbs: 48g
Panda Express: Broccoli Beef With a Side Of Super Greens – Lunch or Dinner
In the past decade, Panda Express has added entrees that are lower in calories and sodium, and higher in protein and vegetables. One of these newer meals is broccoli beef! The beef is tender and coated with a ginger soy sauce. To meet your daily vegetable needs, pair it with a side of super greens: a medley of cabbage, kale, and broccoli!
Ingredients/tips highlight: beef, broccoli, ginger soy sauce, cabbage, kale, broccoli
- Calories: 240 cal
- Fat: 10g
- Protein: 15g
- Carbs: 23g
Chipotle: Chicken Bowl With Cauliflower Rice – Lunch or Dinner
Chipotle is considered a healthier fast-food chain as its ingredients are fresh, not processed, and free from added preservatives. However, some options can be high in calories and fat, so make your choices wisely, such as a chicken bowl! Try the new cauliflower rice in your bowl to mimic the flavour and feeling of white rice, with fewer calories and carbs and more fibre. This adds veggies to your diet in a different way! Load up on fajita vegetables and romaine lettuce. Consider reducing your guacamole and cheese portions in half to reduce calories and fat significantly.
Ingredients/tips highlight: Chicken, cilantro-lime cauliflower rice, light black beans,extra fajita vegetables, extra romaine lettuce, tomato green-chilli salsa, half guacamole, light Monterey jack cheese
- Calories:520 cal
- Fat: 24g
- Protein: 45g
- Carbs: 39g
Starbucks: Egg White & Roasted Red Pepper Sous Vide Egg Bites With Seasonal Fruit Blend – Breakfast or Snack
Have them for breakfast or as an on-the-go snack! These convenient and delicious egg bites are a healthier option at Starbucks. They are lower in calories and high in protein. Pair it with the seasonal fruit blend for a nutritionally balanced meal.
Ingredients: egg whites, cottage cheese, Monterey jack cheese, red bell pepper, spinach, feta cheese
Ingredients fruit blend: Pineapple, Mango, Strawberries, Blueberries
- Calories: 260 cal
- Fat: 8g
- Protein: 13g
- Carbs: 35g
Wendys: Summer Strawberry Salad (Full Size) – Lunch or Dinner
With summer in the air, Wendy’s strawberry salad is available for a limited time, so this item may not be available if you choose to try it out later in the summer. It is sweet, savoury, and high in protein. The vinaigrette is a healthier option than the creamier dressings as it is lower in fat and calories. However, it contains 10g of sugar, so it may be something to reduce or omit.
Ingredients/tips highlight: lettuce blend, grilled chicken, cheese, applewood smoked bacon, strawberries, candied almonds, parmesan, asiago, fontina, champagne vinaigrette
- Calories: 450 cal
- Fat: 23 g
- Protein: 41g
- Carbs: 25g
Authors: NutriProCan Dietitians, Lisa Spriet, RD and Alison Andrade, Nutrition and Dietetics Student, Western University
Want to optimize your food choices for achieving your ideal weight and maintaining it long-term?
Talk to a Registered Dietitian – The first 20-minute call is free so you can learn if our approach would work for you! /nutriprocan.ca/request-appointment