When healthy eating options come to mind, fast food isn’t really something that gets thought about. We tend to associate fast food with high amounts of calories, fat, and carbohydrates. There’s good reason for that, too, as some of the most caloric foods in the world can be placed in a bag and bought for cheap in a drive-thru.
McDonald’s is one of the places that people bring up constantly for having unhealthy food and was even the topic of the documentary “Super Size Me” which pointed out the food’s nutritional values. After all, McDonald’s is the top dog worldwide when it comes to fast food venues. Is it really all unhealthy, though? Surprisingly, there are some items on the menu that are surprisingly low in calories and high in protein. Here are the five healthiest menu options at McDonald’s when you’re really craving the golden arches.
McDonald’s Egg McMuffin has been on the fast food joint’s menu since the early 1970s and is still going strong to this day. One of the most beloved of McDonalds’ highly sought-after breakfast items. The Egg McMuffin just so happens to be one of the healthier food choices on the menu. It consists of two buttered halves of an English muffin, one egg, one slice of Canadian bacon, and one slice of American cheese. Coming in at 290 calories, with 11g of fat, and 16g of protein.
Sausage Egg Burrito
McDonald’s started off 2015 right when they first introduced their Sausage Egg Burrito on January 1st of that year. The breakfast item quickly became a customer favorite and remains on the menu as a healthier, quicker option to start your day. It’s made up of a warm tortilla filled with fluffy scrambled eggs, pork breakfast sausage crumbles, American cheese, and a mix of cooked green chiles and onions. It comes in at a reasonable 310 calories, with 17g of fat, and 13g of protein. Making for a healthier, protein-forward option when you’re on the go.
Added to McDonald’s breakfast menu in 2011, their Fruit and Maple Oatmeal is a warm and filling option for those wanting a more sweet, healthier, vegetarian bite to eat. The oatmeal bowl comes with two servings of whole-grain oats, cream, and brown sugar mixed together, topped with apple chunks, craisins, and two varieties of raisins. The hearty dish comes out to 320 calories, with 4.5g of fat, 6g of protein, and 31g of sugar. The Fruit and Maple Oatmeal is a comforting start to your day and a decently healthy choice compared to most fast-food offerings.
Crispy Chicken Sandwich
Since the 2020 COVID pandemic, McDonald’s has removed a majority of healthier menu options, particularly their salads and grilled chicken. Although, they haven’t rid their menu of chicken entirely. In early 2021, McDonald’s introduced their competition to the fast-food chicken sandwich wars. Their Crispy Chicken Sandwich quickly became a hit and remains on the menu today. It consists of two buttered halves of a potato roll, crinkle-cut pickles, Mayo, and a lightly breaded and fried chicken cutlet. It comes in at 470 calories, with 20g of fat, and 26g of protein. It’s a lower-calorie option compared to the rest of the menu, as well as a pescetarian-friendly one.
Filet o Fish
Another healthier McDonald’s menu item great for the pescatarian crowd, or religious folk who stray from regular meat on meatless Fridays, the Filet o Fish is a tempting option from the burger-focused joint. The Filet o Fish is the creation by McDonald’s franchise owner, Lou Groen, back in 1962. It’s made up of a fried square of Alaskan Pollock, topped with tartar sauce, and American cheese, on a standard hamburger bun. It comes in at 390 calories, with 19g of fat, and 16g of protein. This is a tasty and protein-packed sandwich for when you’re looking for something lighter and different from the usual fast-food fare.