The Least Fattening Fast Food (Lower than 500 Calories)

by Nick

Let’s address the reality: when we visit fast food joints, we’re not typically on the hunt for a health-conscious meal. Instead, we’re drawn to the cheesy, greasy indulgence that’s quick and convenient. While finding a nutritionally dense, diet-friendly dish at a chain isn’t high on our agenda, some fast-food giants have adapted to this mindset. Not by promoting “healthy” options, but by quietly phasing them out from their menus.

However, what has remained constant is the availability of nutrition facts. Nearly every fast food chain offers calorie counts and sometimes detailed macronutrient information. Yet, delving into this data can sometimes be alarming. But for those of us who aim to monitor our calorie intake, checking nutritional information is a necessary step before hitting the drive-thru.


To make this process easier, we’ve identified some of the lowest-calorie meals you can find at American fast-food chains. However, there are several disclaimers to consider. Firstly, what qualifies as “low calorie” varies based on individual factors such as height, activity level, and dietary goals. For our list, we’ve set the threshold at 500 calories or less per meal. We’ve also ensured that these menu items provide sufficient food to constitute a filling meal for most adults.


It’s important to note that a low-calorie meal doesn’t automatically equate to “healthy.” The definition of a healthy diet is subjective and depends on various factors. While indulging in a fried chicken sandwich occasionally may not align with conventional notions of a balanced meal, it can still fit into a well-rounded diet when consumed alongside other nutritionally varied foods.


Recommendations on Low Calories Fast Food

With these considerations in mind, here are some of the best low-calorie fast food meals:


At Burger King, your quest for a low-calorie meal is easily fulfilled with their BK Royal Crispy Wraps, all of which clock in below 400 calories. You can even enhance your meal with a side of Chicken Fries and still keep it low-cal.

Checkers/Rally‘s, known by various names depending on your location, offers a robust selection of low-calorie sandwiches. Whether it’s the crispy fish sandwich, Bacon Cheddar Crisp, or Jacked BBQ burger, you can stay under 500 calories with these options.

Chick-fil-A‘s chicken sandwiches, excluding deluxe variants, are all under 500 calories. However, it’s essential to be mindful of your sauce choice. Opting for Chick-fil-A’s Buffalo sauce, with just 25 calories per container, can help keep your meal lighter.

Jack In The Box provides customizable salads where you can top them with grilled or julienned chicken and drizzle on their balsamic vinaigrette while still staying under 500 calories.

Shake Shack‘s low-calorie offerings are limited, but their BLT sandwich stands out with only 380 calories, making it a satisfying choice.

Taco Bell‘s commitment to offering vegetarian and vegan options extends to their selection of lower-calorie meals. Their Power Bowls, ranging from 420-460 calories, are highly recommended.

At Wendy’s, the crispy chicken BLT offers a surprisingly low calorie count of just 420, making it an excellent option for those seeking a lighter meal without sacrificing flavor.


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